Scott Hanselman

GlucoPilot for the Palm - Open Sourced?

January 30, '06 Comments [6] Posted in DasBlog | Diabetes
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NewColorSmallYears ago I wrote a "C" application for the original Palm called GlucoPilot that I later updated to color Palms. It was the first Diabetes Management Application for a PalmPilot and gained a following. I sold the product to Healthetech who continued to sell and support it for a few years longer. Then, Healthetech got out of the diabetes business and into the diet-related market among other things.

There are literally tens of thousands (perhaps more) of GlucoPilot users in four languages. I've approached Healthetech with the idea of making a GlucoPilot Community Edition that would be Open Source, but with a commercial friendly license that would allow Healthetech to take the changes and potentially commercialize GlucoPilot later. This is similar to the approach newtelligence took with DasBlog.

Right now, GlucoPilot isn't available to download, and doesn't work on Palm OS 5 systems. Palm OS 5 was the one where the CPU totally changed and I never got a copy of Metroworks CodeWarrior as well as the new APIs. I'd like to update GlucoPilot to support not only the newer Palm systems like Treo's but also high-res displays.

However, with my current commitments I couldn't head the technical aspects of this project - I could only act as a product manager. If you, or someone you know, is an experienced Palm programmer and, hopefully, a diabetic, and are interested in truly committing to this product and it's community, please contact me. Please spread the word.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Tracking Book Rankings with the Amazon API

January 30, '06 Comments [0] Posted in ASP.NET | Tools
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Arthur Wait just turned me on to a project he's written callHanselmanTitleZed TitleZ.

It's written in ASP.NET and has some clever Ajax-like and DHTML behaviors. You can set up your own "watch list" of books as well as great printed reports. It's free now, and they'll charge a small fee when it's out of beta. I can see my editor using this tool.

I'd probably invert the Y-axis on the graph such that a low ranking made the line appear higher and there's a few small problems with stylesheets in FireFox with the printed reports, but otherwise, it's pretty slick for a beta!

He says he's tracking 250,000 titles right now. This is great for authors who want to track their rankings and also for competitive research.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Updated January 2006 Blogroll

January 29, '06 Comments [0] Posted in DasBlog
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A few people asked me recently for my blogroll, so I took a bit of time and pared it down to 206 (from the 250+ it was) and posted it here. You can get to my live updated Newsgator OPML here. I'm sure I missed some folks or accidentally deleted your blog, just email me and I'll get you back in there.

A lot of folks don't realize that DasBlog already includes a Blogroll.aspx page that will automatically style a file called blogroll.opml if you place it in your /SiteConfig folder. It's styled using a file called opml.xslt. In my case, I blatently stole mine xslt file from Joshua Allen's OPML page and modified it for my own use.

If you have DasBlog installed, put your blogroll.opml file in /SiteConfig and visit /blogroll.aspx yourself. Of course, you're welcome to modify the existing shody opml.xslt as much as you like. Maybe I'll included a version of Joshua's with DasBlog.

Now playing: Mario - How Could You

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Subversion case-sensitivity problems

January 26, '06 Comments [7] Posted in Subversion | Bugs
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Does anyone out there also running Subversion find this to be a little disconcerting? Stuart does. There are two issues here, first it seems there's a number of asserts in the release builds of Subversion. It appears the code uses asserts when an 'uncomfortable' state is reached - except that asserts halt/panic the server, rather than aborting the current transaction. Probably not what they intended when the started to use asserts.

The second, more acute, problem is that there's a particular assert that will occur when making a branch or tag using a mixed case string for the repository when the server expects a different case. Rephrased: If you tag a repository named http://foo/bar/trunk but you typed in http://foo/Bar/mytag then you'll bring down the entire SVN server. Nice little DoS on any SVN server, right there. The user only needs access to a single repository on that server and they can bring down the whole thing.

The bug's been reported, but I'm not seeing that it's thought of as a big deal. I hope this is fixed soon...for now, I think I'll keep my home repository on CVS. Whew.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Babies sleeping through the night

January 26, '06 Comments [17] Posted in Parenting | Z
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CIMG4435Z is 8 weeks, 2 days old. Yeah, yeah, I know, we still count days. We've, of course, been trying to get him to sleep "through the night." Many folks, myself included, think that "through the night" is kind of a mythical goal and I've said it when asked. A few days back he slept from 9pm to 3am and that was "through the night" as far as I was concerned. We have continued our quest for a few more hours sleep, though.

Now, I know all babies are different and this all may be a fluke and there will be times when he's 8 years old and won't sleep through the night, but for the most part, I think our general technique is working. I'm sure you've got similar tips.

Z slept from 11pm until past 8am last night freeing us (and particularly my wife) up to sleep 9 hours. Here's what my extensive () eight weeks of parenting has taught me.

  • Routine - Babies love routine. We put him down, plus or minus an hour, at around 9pm ever night. This will likely head more towards 8pm.
  • Food - We are breast feeding exclusively (no formula) and pumping with a breast pump. We give him one bottle of pumped milk a day, so he's used to it in case of emergency.
    • We give him a bottle just before bed to really fill him up. Babies seem to get comforted by the boob more than the bottle, so he'll drink as much as 4oz with the bottle, eyes open while he'll go into "buffet mode" on the boob and pass out. When he's that full, and keeps it down, he'll sleep for hours, not being awoke by hunger.
    • We'll also sometimes "top him off" just before he's put into the crib (which is next to our bed)
    • Another technique that is well thought of that we haven't tried is to give a breast-fed baby one formula bottle a night. Formula is harder to digest and says in the tummy longer, letting babies sleep longer as a result.
  • Warm Bath - After he eats and gives us the obligatory and nearly immediate gift of poo, he takes a bath(picture above) in water that's warm (100 degrees F). We'd been using lukewarm water and he used to freak out. When we switched to using rubber-ducky thermometer that checks for temperature safety we make it hotter. He loves the tub at only eight weeks. Totally relaxes him.
  • Set the Stage - We've also started lowering the lights and turning on the radio around this time. Too much light seems to freak babies (at least this one) out. We slow down, talk quiet and generally prep him for a quiet time.
  • Swaddling - Don't use a receiving blanket to swaddle, it'll never work, too small. We use this blanket because it's huge - 42"x42". When he's on lockdown he can't wake himself up with spastic arms.
  • Down is down - Now that he's put down he'll cry here and there, but we believe he's to young for us to Ferber him (in the hardcore way). However, we do avoid picking him up when he's down as it just starts the whole process over. We stoke his face and comb his hair and generally watch for the difference between "sobbing" and "crying." He sobs when he's tired, he cries when something's wrong.

CIMG4437None of this is rocket science and I assume it's all up for debate and variability. However, it's working better each night and knock wood, it'll continue to work for the most part.

All of this means a happier baby when he's awake and gives the wife and I time together before we collapse from exhaustion, wake up, rinse and repeat the process for the next eighteen years.

It's also easier to write posts like this when he's happily asleep :)

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.