Archive for category General

Java and USB devices

Here is an interesting artice from Jeff Friesen discussing how to interact with a USB device using java: 

Java and USB by Jeff Friesen — Want to use a USB device in Java? Some with native abstractions, like mass-storage drives, work as you'd expect, but many devices like webcams and game controllers are simply invisible to the Java programmer. Jeff Friesen looks at two APIs that expose USB devices to Java, then shows how to build a Java USB implementation of your own.

Currently, Java does not officially support USB but Jeff discusses how you can use thirdparty APIs as well as his own API.  Readers may also be interested in the Bluetooth JSR.

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Twenty one issues with an IT Client……

I saw this on IT Contractor today, some of the issues are pretty funny and some very true 🙂

1. They interview you before getting budget approval, and then tell you afterwards that the budget has not been approved.

2. They set technical tests and get their own answers wrong.

3. They ask you what your weaknesses are. Would Tony Blair tell you what his weaknesses are? He was asked a similar question on the BBC Today programme and answered: “that’s for me to know and you to find out.”

4. They give as a reason for rejecting you after interview that you do not have adequate experience in skill X when you admitted prior to interview that you didn’t.

5. They give as a reason for rejecting you after interview that you do not have adequate experience in skill X when it wasn’t asked for in the first place.

6. You are a contractor and you have a gap of a few months on your CV and it’s known that the IT market is in a downturn. They ask what you’ve been doing? Trying to find work of course!

7. They hold interviews when they know that the job will be filled internally.

8. Human Resources (aka Human Remains) interview you and ask you lots of stupid questions, none of which have any relevance to whether you can do the job.

9. The job is a contract position and they insist on knowing your career aims for the next 20 years.

10. You have 10 years’ solid IT industry experience, yet they insist on your having a 1st class honours degree from a top 10 university and 3 A’s at A-Level before they’ll even look at you.

11. You have 10 years’ solid IT industry experience, yet they insist on your having a 1st class honours degree from Oxford, Cambridge or Imperial. So those who graduated from Harvard magna cum laude need not apply then?

12. They ask you to give them an idea on how to proceed with the problem that is forcing them to look for a contractor in the first place. In other words, they want free consultancy as part of the interview. But once they’ve got the consultancy they hire someone else.

13. They advertise a job that specifies that the candidate must have at least 3 years’, but no more than 10 years’, experience in C++. In other words, those aged over 35 need not apply.

14. They insist that you have 2 years’ commercial experience in a new software technology that has yet to be released.

15. You are rejected because you do not fit the “company culture.” In other words, you are too old.

16. They say you must be able to write bug-free code as a matter of course. So their current software is bug-free then?

17. They get the agency to give you a technical test over the phone. You pass this and they invite you to their offices. They never set eyes on you but they get the agency to set you a written technical test. However, afterwards, you receive no feedback whatsoever, despite numerous attempts at follow-ups.

18. You have an interview on a Tuesday. After the interview they tell you that they have more candidates to see and they won’t be making a decision until Friday. Wrong! They’ve already made a decision – that you won’t be one of the candidates they’ll choose on Friday. If they want you they’ll make you an offer within 24 hours, either later that day or the next morning, regardless of whether they’ve got others to see.

19. They think that if you haven’t got commercial experience in skill X then you can’t do it at all.

20. You have been a professional programmer for 10 years, but you don’t have commercial experience in the latest skill, X. Yet they treat you as though you are a brand new programmer with no commercial experience at all.

21. They ask for a shopping-list of a dozen skills. You are able to land the contract anyway. But after you’ve completed it you’ve only had to use one or two skills on the shopping-list. 


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Google Checkout

It looks like Google Checkout is about to launch.  This will be a direct competitor of Paypal who up until now have been the dominate player in the e-payment market.   Google plan to integrate their Adwords service with Checkout.  This means that a person searching the web can see that a site advertised accepts Google Checkout payments.  Their will also be incentives for Adwords customer in the form of discounts for Checkout in return for money spent on Adwords.

As Google are able to gather immense amounts of information about buyer behavior from their search engine and Adword programs, it looks like Google Calendar could be a very powerful tool for any on-line store.

 Google have also released an API for developers to interact with Checkout.  Anyone that is interested in Developing using this API should check out the cookbook.

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Add an Icon to your website….

I came across this handy web tool for converting image files into icons.  There are also tips for adding the icon to your website.  I gave it a go with my Passion Development logo and it worked great.

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So, Where have I been?

Well, I have been pretty busy lately hence the lack of blogs.   Passion Development is up and running, well the company anyway.  I still have a bit of work to do on the web site. 

So why did I decide to start Passion Development?

In the last few years I have seen a lot of changes in the Software Development industry in Ireland.   Companies are constantly down sizing their product development departments, in favor of short term projects developed by contractors.   Gone, are the years of large product development departments that suffer from the quiet periods between projects.  In today’s software industry, if you are not adding value you are simply a cost.  

It is my aim to use the skills that I have developed to add value to my clients. 

Passion Development LogoI asked a friend of mine, Wendy Kavanagh of dynamo to design a logo for me that emphasized my passion and love for the work that I do.  I could not be happier with the finished product. It is made of an very abstract p  and d.  Thank you Wendy for all the hard work.  Now, If I only got to work on the content for the Passion Development Website, she could work magic charm on that too.



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