Blogs

My voicemail greeting

  • Posted on: 22 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten

So, I've recently been getting a lot of junk voicemails and in an effort to inconvenience these callers as much as it inconveniences me. It's time for a long winded and time consuming voice mail greeting. I extended the BEEEP at the end so that it keep on going for the full two minutes before they can leave a message.

Tee-double-hee

Hello, you've reached my voicemail.

I tend not to use voicemail much anymore, who does? If you really want to get hold of me your best bet would be drop me a quick text message or email. But, if you are one of the many annoying telesales, marketing or spambots that like to leave me messages - perhaps this will help answer any questions:

No, I dont want any new credits cards.

No, I am not interested in getting paid for reviewing hotels.

No, I do not want to go on a cruise.

No, I don't care if I have won a free prize.

No, I am not "Amy" the woman you are looking for who has some unpaid bills.

No, I don't want a new car (well actually I do, but not from you).

How to display multiple google maps in html

  • Posted on: 21 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten

 

I'm tweaking a customers website today and spending time tidying up some small issues. One of these issues was to display a Google Map widget for each of the companies three offices. This would have been super easy using a CMS like Drupal but this is to be added to a custom HTML5 website. Even so, "Sounds pretty straightforward" I thought and volunteered   ;)

 

tips for programmers*sigh* After an hour of reading radically different google maps tutorials, trying (and failing) to get the maps to display, I was starting to mutter swear words. But then YAY! after a strong coffee, and an afternoon doughnut I was able to figure out the gremlins and see the maps in all their glory.

I finally got Google Maps embedded in my page, working lovely, using a mixture of code examples from various sources. Heavily modified, it works beautifully and of course, is hopefully very readable for any other code-monkey out there. So its time to write it down before it fizzles out of my brain forever. If you came here after googling (or bing'ing) every combination of "multiple map on one screen" possible then I hope this helps...

So you want to display more than one google map on your web page?

 

It's easy to upgrade AS400 RPG/400 to modern, web-enabled IBM i RPG4... honest!

  • Posted on: 12 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten

RPG Modernization made simple

or a tale of taking old crusty gray haired legacy RPG and making it modern rich and vibrant -- or is that over playing it too much? ;)

The more I play with Profound/UI the more I like it...

(virtually) unchanged RPG code, auto-generated DDS for HTML version of DSPF and a recompile and *boom* web enabled RPG applications... Especially cool, because going forward if we need to make a change to the RPG program then its as simple as making the change to the one version of the code and then (1) compiling it over the old DDS/DSPF into the 'green screen' library and then (2) compiling the same RPG source code over the new Profound RichDDS/DSPF into the web library and *KABOOM* -- two versions of the program, one running perfectly in green screen and one running perfectly in the web, but both including our new code changes.

Like it!

Telly: The Worst Week of My Life

  • Posted on: 10 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten

Only one week to go before the marriage of Howard and Mel which quickly escalates into the week from Hell. The series follows the bumbling Howard as he lurches from one appallingly embarrassing disaster to the next in the week leading up to his wedding.

A fairly typical modern British sitcom - but based around a stuck up, middle class, fussy couple how love each other but just get themselves ina pickle. Funny, amusing and romantic. The missus loved it and it made me smile consistently. Soft Anglocomedy but, something anyone who likes British RomCom/Sitcom will enjoy. :)

Telly: The Worst Week of My Life

  • Posted on: 10 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten



Only one week to go before the marriage of Howard and Mel which quickly escalates into the week from Hell. The series follows the bumbling Howard as he lurches from one appallingly embarrassing disaster to the next in the week leading up to his wedding.

A fairly typical modern British sitcom - but based around a stuck up, middle class, fussy couple how love each other but just get themselves ina pickle. Funny, amusing and romantic. The missus loved it and it made me smile consistently. Soft Anglocomedy but, something anyone who likes British RomCom/Sitcom will enjoy. :)

When is an AS400 not an AS400?

  • Posted on: 5 March 2014
  • By: NickLitten
ibm as400 is black not white

IBM Power Servers are NOT the same as the old IBM AS400 serversThis has been an ongoing argument disagreement in our IBM i and RPG programmer communities for well over a decade: Should IBM have changed the name when the launched the replacement for the old AS/400 computer? Many people using the latest IBM i servers still enjoy calling it "the 400" but the big problem with this is that non-technical people (often management) hear this and then think they are still using the huge old fashioned pre-internet computer system of yesteryear.

A simplified history of The 400:

Hardware: The AS400 was replaced by the iSeries. The iSeries was replaced by the System i. The System i was replaced by the Power System.

Software: Operating system has evolved and been rebranded with each new system hardware upgrade -- from OS400, thru I5/OS to the latest OS called IBM i. That is an internet fact. 

I like to describe this as:

Generation 1 - AS400 (running OS400 operating system)

Generation 2 - iSeries (running OS400 operating system)

Generation 3 - System i (running i5/OS operating system)

Generation 4 - Power System (optionally running the IBM i Operating system)

<RANT>

For some hugely frustrating reason, there is still a sizable group of IBM i Software Developers who insist on referring to the latest and greatest IBM i Power machine by the incorrect name of it's twenty year old predecessor. This machine is NOT an AS400. It is not "THE 400". It's not even an iSeries. The AS400 is an old computer system from the last century! The AS400 hardware could not run the modern operating systems we use. The AS400 was invented before the advent of email, before facebook, Hell... it was around before the internet! Calling IBM POWER SYSTEMS an AS/400 is insulting and automatically puts the picture of an old legacy computer system into our users heads. Not good. When a new model of a computer is released with brand new hardware and a different name (to differentiate it from the old model) use the correct name. I just don't understand this resistance against the new machines branding. As I.T. Professionals surely it's the information technology that fires us up. Surely it's the excitement of modern computers that wakes us up every morning? We are all IT Professional, surely that makes us all Star Trek Nerds, which in turn means we all understand that "Resistance is Futile!"  ;) 

</RANT>

Anyway, back on topic of the AS400 -> iSeries -> System i -> Power System upgrade discussion

Last night, I was reading a frustrating discussion on Linkedin about this very subject. The core of the conversation goes like this

I heard from one of my old customers from the 1990's and my software is still running on their 400 - bloody good machines these iSeries boxes

Cool! But I wouldn't think they are still using the old iSeries hardware. Probably on a more recent IBM Power System running the IBM i operating system

PEEPSHOW is the best comedy on tv and if you dont agree then you are wrong and its that simple for sure.. yep.. shut it loser

  • Posted on: 28 February 2014
  • By: NickLitten
Peep Show - utter genius

Peep show... peep show... bloody brilliant ... nuff said

Arguably my favorite laugh-out-loud sitcom of all time. Peep Show is a British sitcom starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb and it filmed from the unusual 'through-their-eyes' point of view. You can also hear the thoughts of the person who's eyes you are looking through. It follows the incredible life of the two main characters it's rude, funny and just brilliant.

I've binge watched the whole 8 seasons on at least three seperate occasions and each time it's funnier.

Double, treble thumbs up!

Telly: PLEBS - Veni, Vidi, Laughum

  • Posted on: 27 February 2014
  • By: NickLitten


Funny Roman Slaves wandering around and being slavish. Modern twist on a vintage anglo-sitcom style.

PLEBS follows three desperate young men from the suburbs as they try to get laid, hold down jobs and climb the social ladder in the big city - a city that happens to be Ancient Rome. The series stars Tom Rosenthal (Friday Night Dinner), Joel Fry (Trollied) and Ryan Sampson (After You've Gone) as the three young men - Marcus, Stylax and their lazy slave with an attitude problem, Grumio.

Telly: PLEBS chuckling at Romans

  • Posted on: 26 February 2014
  • By: NickLitten

I found this by accident and it's yet another Telly series which reminds by just how funny and irreverent English TV can be.

Plebs is based in Rome at the time of the Roman British invasion - an easy play on the Latin word 'plebeians' -- and if you don't know what that word means that you need to jog back to school and give your history teacher a swift kick up the arse. Plebs is filled with stupid British comedy, occasional naughty words and frequent innuendo and sexual comments it just about sums up British comedy at its best. It's The Inbetweeners meets Ancient Rome:

PLEBS follows three desperate young men from the suburbs as they try to get laid, hold down jobs and climb the social ladder in the big city - a city that happens to be Ancient Rome. The series stars Tom Rosenthal (Friday Night Dinner), Joel Fry (Trollied) and Ryan Sampson (After You've Gone) as the three young men - Marcus, Stylax and their lazy slave with an attitude problem, Grumio.

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