Wednesday, January 31, 2007


Swan Races at Lotusphere

Ok, so not my proudest moment. I failed miserably in this race. I didn't understand the turning point and we paddled the entire pond. We had some laughs anyway. Thanks to Warren Elsmore for hosting the race and posting this picture. Thanks to Andrew Kelly for sailing with me.

Monday, January 29, 2007


CoComment for tracking blogging comments

At Lotusphere 2007 last week, I heard Sean Burgess mention this web service for tracking you comments online. Sounds good to me. I signed up today. You have to add a plug-in for Firefox. I ran a quick test and I didn't see my comment listed yet. Oh well, I'll keep playing. It's got to be better than using my memory to track all the comments I make on blogs. That's not cutting it anymore. Check out

Sunday, January 28, 2007


Ben's latest stick animation

Ben loves animation and he's begging me to post his latest creation. He's created this animation using, Pivot StickFigure Animator. We converted it to an animated gif so we could post and his buddies could review. He calls it "Sashe episode 1 The New Ninja". Having come from 10 days at Disney, I can only encourage his imagination.


My heroes have not always been bloggers...

... but they are now. My heroes have generally come from the sports world or historical figures like Roger Staubach or Ben Franklin. Now, I look up to the Lotus blogging community as my heroes. They're an intelligent, thoughtful, interesting and welcoming community. The talent represented here amazes me. They are some of the best professional speakers as well as implementers of Lotus technology. They have a sense of humor and can speak Geek, business and general conversation fluently. The knowledge they share for free on a daily basis is fantastic. Check out they're blogs regularly. It was a pleasure and honor to hang with these folks for a week at Lotusphere 2007.

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Friday, January 26, 2007


Day 3 & 4 at Lotusphere

Day 3 started off great and ended better. I won a 1gb Travel USB drive by wearing the TLCC tshirt and going to the product showcase. I almost bought one in the store earlier in the week. Some more great content including the "How to Sell Lotus Notes", "Low Level Prototyping" and "30 Lotuscript techniques".
Great content on basic skills that everyone can benefit from.
Speedgeeking was a hoot. Burn your brain out all day in sessions, drink some beer and see 12 presentations all presented in 5 minutes each. As if 4 days of technical lecture didn't burn me out, this session is perfect to make sure I'm loaded with more stuff to learn. The one thing I've learned is that you don't really absorb it till you take it back to the office and practice. I quit the SpeedGeeking after #10 because I had plans to meet some friends and go see The Robert Cray band at the House of Blues. All I can say is, "Awesome!". I don't know his music real well so I didn't know what to expect. I did know he is a great blues guitarist and if he jammed, I'd enjoy it. Did they ever Jam! What a great voice, player and the band was tight. We all raved about the night and what a great idea it was to miss the party at Animal Kingdom(in the rain). Day 4, I headed out to the BOF for Bloggers. I was late, it was raining and I went to the wrong room. The BOF's moved over to the Swan. No worries. It was a crowded session and good conversation around blogging. I went to a good session on retrofitting old Notes apps to new stuff. Some great content there that I need to review. I headed over to EPCOT to meet my wife for lunch and we had sushi in Japan. Then I caught a set with Off Kilter and headed back to the Dolphin for the Closing session. Very interesting presentation by Astrophysicist Dr. Neil Degrasse Tyson. Hung around with the blogger crew and got a great picture of them on stage. That was it for Lotusphere and I headed back to EPCOT to have some fun with the wife. It was the best Lotusphere that I've been to.
Great content, friends and more fun that I should be allowed.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Day 2 at Lotusphere

Went hard today covering the conference from BOF to BOF. (Birds 0f A Feather) Interface and usability were themes today. The BOF had some good dialog and was a good primer for the presentation later in the day. Today was Nathan Freeman day as I got a heavy dose of him. He's a character and was full of idea's. Things that come to mind were using layers, color pallete(he used a fantastic web site to assist in this, ColourLovers ), good use of white space and etc. First time I can remember the show spending any time on interface and usability. Great stuff! Tons of code and examples today in the sessions I attended. Here's a quick list and hopefully I can expand on this after the conference. Javascript toolkits and all the cool elements you can quickly add to your site. Extending and understanding the Blog template recently added to Notes/Domino. Nice job here by Sean Burgess and Jon Von(awesome use of Flash presentation; will check this out later)! Ray Bilyk did a nice intro to upgrading your old apps to 6 and 7 versions. This lead in nicely to the Interface Matters with Chris Blatnick and Nathan Freeman. Lots of great demo's of old and new makeovers. My finishing BOF was the meeting of some of the most talented developers in the Domino world. Great interaction and the room was packed. Nice job as always to Bruce Elgort.
I finished the day going down to Planet Hollywood for dinner with some old friends from previous job. Awesome! Plan on seeing them tonight for the Robert Cray concert. Off to day 3!

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Day 1 at Lotusphere

The mad rush to the opening session was on at 7:30 am. I ran right into Andrew Kelly on the way over to the Dolphin. I hoped I could get some breakfast before the session. The place was packed. We headed up to the ballroom and the line was already getting long. I zipped down to the first floor to catch some muffins and coffee for Andrew and I. Ran into Joe Litton and they saved a seat for me. I should have eaten that last muffin because I crushed it with something in my bag and it stuck to my notebook and was in crumbs all over my bag. The session was packed and they had to turn people away. The energy was high and they had a great live band to kick it off. The band featured about 15 singers doing The Who, David Bowie and some other rockin' stuff. Lance Armstrong was the guest speaker. Seeing an American hero on stage gave me goose bumps. He did a nice job with humor and telling stories of his Space adventures. I particularly liked his comment that when they decided to send a man to the moon they could have sent criminals but instead decided on pilots. They had fantastic scientists on the project and he was just a "Technition" who installed some mirrors. He explained that those mirrors were installed to help us determine the distance to the moon and are still in use today. They initially had trouble hitting the mirrors with a laser beam. Trouble was it's like hitting a dime from 2 miles out. The biggest trouble was that they didn't know they had the wrong latitude and longitude from the spot the observatory they were shooting the laser beam from and it had been wrong since the 1800's. It was great when they finally did get it right because they could then calculate the mileage for his expense account. Laugh!
My sessions were ok for the first day. Started out with the famous "Worst mistakes in Domino". Always a great laugh and learning experience. I had to rush over to the Swan pond for paddle boat races. I was horrible and came in last. I went off course a bit. Quick lunch and headed to an LEI session. I picked up one tip there that could really save me in a current project. I need to review the use of views as data selection. Seems there's a way where you can lose data. I have the technote written down to review. I did some product showcase, bought a JavaScript book and a carrier for my iPod. There were a couple sessions on my agenda I'd seen before. "How to make Domino web sites that don't look like Domino" was one of these but I believe I picked up a couple new web tricks there. I skipped a couple sessions and did a usability study in the lab. I did the BOF on blogging and wiki's that had some interesting comments on how to apply these in a company. For fun, I had a few laughs and drinks at Joe Litton's room and then over to the JamFest. Great energy, horrible singing and some good rock tunes. Now, let's start day 2.

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Sunday, January 21, 2007


Jumpstart day at Lotusphere

Just a quick note on day 1 at Lotusphere for me. I had a difficult time choosing my sessions. I went to the SOA, AJAX, Blog Template and Testing Jumpstarts. The SOA session was tough for an 8am start. It was a little dry and no examples. Too much lecture for my ADD. Good news though that Notes 8 will have a Web Services consumer capability. The AJAX session by Scott Good was better but there was a very beginner intro to JavaScript. That took up the first hour and not all of it related to AJAX. I did enjoy the AJAX part and Scott is a good speaker that can hold your attention. I'll definitely check out his blog for the examples used like the address book lookup, type-ahead and AJAX views. The Blog template Jumpstart had the two authors of the IBM blog, Steve Castledine and Declan Lynch of the Blogoshere OpenNTF template. They did a great job explaining the importance of blogging and a overview of how to customize your blog using these Notes templates. I had the opportunity to meet Declan last night and he's done a great job on this template. He notes the new version 3 template may be available in a couple weeks. I only lasted an hour in the final Jumpstart on Testing in Domino. I'll have to read the notes. I needed to get some work done and check out some football... Now heading over to the welcome party. Go Pats!

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BALD and Turtle party's are big fun

It's was great to see the Lotus Bloggers today at Big River and ESPN Club. One of the biggest advantages of blogging is that you get to meet some great people online and that makes it easier to carry a conversation when you meet face-to-face. You feel like you already know each other and you have something in common. The bloggers have a great attitude and are exciting people. Looking foward to learning and partying with them all week. I should be able to post pictures soon. For now, I have to run off to the first JumpStart session.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


Travel woes

The story so far on my Lotusphere trip is the trouble we've encountered. First, note to self, be more assertive. We got to the airport a couple of hours early. We should have tried to hop on the 10am plane because our luggage did. When we got to the airport, we stood around waiting for our luggage for 45 minutes before we reported it missing. Come to find out, it took the earlier flight and was waiting for us. Cool thing about the flight was that Geno Auriemma, who coaches the UConn Women's basketball team, was right behind me getting on the plane. We rode the monorail to the terminal with him. He seemed tires so we just said Hi. Second problem was when we entered our room to find we had a musty room with double beds and a broken faucet. There's three adults and we ordered a room with 2 queen beds. While my wife laid down for a bit, we went down to ask for another room. This one was on the first floor so we took a look before we went up to the fourth floor to get my wife. We walked in and saw a nice room. Only problem was it had one bed. Not good and she said this was the only room left working with 2 queen beds. Back to the front desk. We tried a different cast member. This one worked and the room is nice facing Epcot. Third problem happened last night after a long day doing the Magic Kingdom Keys to the Kingdom tour (Awesome!) and the Epcot death march. My wife was exhausted and skipped the Illuminations fireworks. My sister-in-law and I headed to the hotel and she stayed downstairs to make a phone call and etc. I tried my room key in the room I could swear was my room. Room wouldn't unlock. I didn't want to bang too hard and wake my wife. I waited for my sister-in-law about 10 minutes and then headed downstairs. I found her at the bottom of the elevator and we went up to try her key. Didn't work. We went to the front desk and got new keys and came back up. Didn't work with the new keys. Went down to the front desk and came back with the front desk clerk and a master card key. Didn't work. Went back down and got the metal key. We finally got in.
Hope that's it for trouble. Looking forward to today and hooking up with the BALD bloggers.
We're still having a great time even with all the troubles. Next post, I'll write some stuff about the tour at Magic Kingdom.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


New attractions in Disney Parks

Here's a note of new fun at Disney World as the Loti (Lotus Developers, Admins, and etc.) prepare to invade the land of Mickey for the annual Lotusphere conference. Disney is constantly adding new attractions. Here are a few if you intend to take some extra time and see the parks.(My wife is the Disney expert and this mostly comes from her studying of the discussion boards)

Mount Everest - Loti will get a chance to experience this new coaster at Animal Kingdom for the Wednesday night party. My wife and sister got a special preview of this ride last January. A thoughtful cast member invited them for a ride when Disney was only allowing cast members and friends. I wouldn't call the sister's thrill ride types but they enjoyed it. They had to sit down and catch their breath for a while. They were excited to get the preview.

Nemo show - In the place of the Tarzan Rocks show at Animal Kingdom, there's a new show starring Nemo. All I know is that it has puppets and people are enjoying it.

Clam ride - They've built clam mobiles and a tour of The Living Seas.

Updated GM display at Test Track - I enjoy Test Track and the GM display. It's the only time you can sit in a new car/truck and not be hassled by a sales person.

New Pirates - There's some new stuff in the famous Pirates of the Caribbean ride. Jack Sparrow and Davey Jones are among the pirates. I'm told the rides been refurbished.

Monster's Inc. Laugh Club - Did not get good reviews when it opened in Magic Kingdom. Maybe the crowd was throwing tomatoes? It's closed till they make it better? It was over behind Buzz LightYear.

Note that Splash Mountain, Mexican boat ride(my wife's favorite), Rockin' Roller Coaster(opens middle of our week) will be closed for repair.

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Sunday, January 14, 2007


New game for iPod - Suduko

I discovered this gem yesterday in the iTunes store. I enjoy playing this game for a couple reasons. First, it's a number puzzle game. I find these relaxing. Second, it's an excuse to put my headphones on and listen to tunes. Now with this game being on my iPod, I can do both in the one unit. Cool! It has nice graphics. The navigation is great. I'm often swearing at the click wheel when using it in the iPod menu. It seems to click on the item above or below the one I want. In this game, the picking of numbers is better. If you want to cheat, this game makes it easy and you don't need an eraser. I found the Hard puzzle not too hard but the next level is very hard. It keeps some points and unlocks some other puzzles/scenery as you progress. The other nice feature is the Newspaper mode. You can add puzzles from the newspaper or any other source. Only drawback is battery eating. My iPod's a year old and I may need a new battery soon. I'll need to bring a battery booster/charger if I want to last my whole trip next week. For $5 and a quick download, it's well worth the price. I'd like to see more simple games like this for iPod. I find that some of the simplest games can be the most addicting.
Enjoy and Rock On!

Friday, January 12, 2007


Let's talk about the weather for Lotusphere

I'm stressing on what the weather's going to do in Orlando when I arrive next week. We've not had winter weather all winter in New England. The warmer it stays here, the more I feel we'll get blasted later this year. I've got a bad feeling that the Artic blast will cool Orlando down too. I checked the site today and the extended forcast is for 67-74 for highs. That would be great if it just doesn't rain. I would really like to spend some time outside while I'm there. Oh, please don't send any Nor'Easter's for my plan flight down.
Rock on!

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007


HP support gets an "A" today

My recent experience with "Support" of any kind has been less than fun lately. Tonight, however, I was pleased. I had a busy day troubleshooting/coding/meetings at work today. I was a little frazzled as I made my way in the door. Upon entering the living room, I found my wife and son upset as they tried to replace the print cartridges in the HP printer. As my wife further annoyed with me with her comments about how the computer and the printer sucks, I began my part-time home computer troubleshooting job. (With steam coming out my ears) I hardly had my coat off as I struggled to figure why the cartridges would not latch on in the printer. After a couple minutes, I realized I needed to turn them a different direction and Yahoo, snap they're in. :) Now I can eat...
After dinner, dug into the question why we get a test page everytime we turn the printer on. I Googled it and got something on the HP site but it didn't look like my answer. I went to the HP site and to support. I searched around the FAQ's and typed in the question. I looked through the first 10 of 250 responses. Screw that. I see they have a chat support but it says they don't support Mac's. I'm on FireFox so I ignore their warning and the chat opens up with no problem. They're a little slow in the chat. It's like they're searching a support site no matter how simple the question. Anyway, we unplug the USB first and I still get a test page. I plug the USB back and then scan the test page. It seems that the printer uses the page with all the lines on it to calibrate the printer. All better. I'm a happy camper. During the chat, he compliments me for helping with troubleshooting. I do this crap all day long is what I say on the inside. On the outside, I just thanked him.
So, try chat out. It's free and no hassle. It's worked for me twice now.
P.S. As I look now at the test page, there's a picture of doing this but the instructions are lame. The instructions are in about 10 different languages but I only speak one and it doesn't say anything about scanning.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Cool iPod video utility - HandBrake

The fact I have a video iPod does not excite me. At what point would I see myself glued to my iPod watching a video. Besides, there are few movies I'd watch over and over again. To me, it's a waste of space that could be used for more music. :) But, since I'm getting ready for a trip via plane, I figured why not see if I could rip a couple videos for the ride. I Googled and found HandBrake. I'm not going to go into any detail other to say I successfully ripped a DVD and it plays on my iPod. I just took the defaults and let it fly. It took 20min or so. I just hope my battery can last the whole flight. P.S. It's only for Mac.

Monday, January 08, 2007


Bloggers Annual Lotusphere Dinner(BALD) & Wed. Party Rumor

Plans are being made. I see Bruce and Joe have mentioned the annual get together is on for Big River on the Disney Boardwalk. It's for 3pm Saturday before Lotusphere gets rolling. I wish we could do this monthly. Truely looking forward to seeing everyone again. All are welcome.

My wife found talk about the Wed party rumor on the Disboards she follows daily. There's more rumor talk on the Turtle's Unofficial Lotusphere site. I really enjoyed SeaWorld last year. I'd really like to see a good live band. If they do have it at Animal Kingdom, as the rumor suggests, I could be persuaded to check out The Robert Cray Band over at the House of Blues on the same night instead. I've got mixed feelings about the party being at Animal Kingdom in the dark. I enjoy the park during the day but I'm not sure it will be that great at night. Although, it may be the first time I ride the new Everest ride and there's free beer/food.

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Thursday, January 04, 2007


Five things you may not have known about me

Following the lead set by the other Lotus bloggers and invited by Joe "aka Little" Litton(that little known fact was very romantic :) )
Here's my list:

1. I've been to Europe but I've never seen it. It's sort of a riddle. My dad was stationed in Germany in the Army and my mom was there too. I was conceived there but born in the good ol' U.S.
2. My real first name is Harry. I'm a Jr. My first son is the third. My parents always called me by m middle name "Curt". Or when they were angry at me, Curtis. My first name comes from my great grandfather and my middle name comes from my great grand mother's maiden name.
3. I'm a direct descendant of one of the founding fathers of Hartford, CT. His name was Rev. Samuel Stone.
4. My 6th, 7th and 8th grade traveling basketball team went 75-0. In high school, I was the captain of the basketball team. We won our league, league tournament(I sank the winning shot at the buzzer) and district. Our best player sprang his ankle before the quarter finals of the state tournament and we lost. I'm 6'2" but I could dunk in high school.
5. I have 1086 Grateful Dead and 439 Jerry Garcia songs on my iPod, so far. I have 7440 songs total. 20% of my song collection on my iPod is Grateful Dead related. (I didn't even know that about me.) Many of my songs are well over the 3 minute average. I could play it straight through during the Lotusphere conference and never play the same song. (If you don't count all the live repeats I have) :)

Pass the ball --> Chris W, Chris B, Ray, Rob, Rocky

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Lotusphere Party rumor

Where's this year's Lotusphere 2007 Wednesday Night Party? I found Ben Langhinrich' s post on the Unofficial Lotusphere 2007 site suggesting that it's Animal Kingdom. He notes the blog post on the Developer Works Blog. I've been searching almost daily to see where the party's at. Seems to me that the announcement is late this year. It will be interesting to see if this is the spot and if they can pull off a good time at this park. I guess the new roller coaster is a plus but what else can the do to make this a good time? I hope they add a great live band.
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