The Age of Web Development

We were talking about form design at the accessibility meeting at the Cleveland Sight Center this morning, and one of the regular Web Dev SIG attendees made a comment about how it depends on the age of designer as to whether labels or notes were put before or after an input field. Of course, I had to chime in “Oh come on now! Not all of us whippersnappers are bad form devs!” The original comment really irked me, inspiring this soapbox post.

If you are using the age of the developer or designer as a metric for web design, you’re doing something wrong.

Maybe there’s that stereotype that young developers will focus on new technologies as being the best way no matter what. Maybe there’s a stereotype that boring HTML pages were written by older developers. And if those stereotypes are there, I’m calling you out now.

Plain and simple – poor web development doesn’t discriminate. You can be of any gender, any race, any creed, any age… it doesn’t matter who you are. The only way a developer can get away from poor design/development is by hearing that their design doesn’t work because of {insert reason here} and then receiving constructive feedback on how to improve their design.

This isn’t the first time that I’ve heard someone make a general remark about how the “younger” generation doesn’t know how to design web forms. But I’m tired of hearing that. People enter the web development arena at various ages, and honestly, age should not even be considered when looking at a poorly written app. Prior experience, possibly… but age, no….

SQL Server MVP Deep Dives

Tonight, I got to hear Allen White give another awesome PowerShell presentation – this time on gathering SQL perofrmance data with it. Now, when it comes to PowerShell, Allen not only talks about it, he passionates (passion-ates) about it. (His word…. as other SQL people can confirm…)

Anyhow, when he started tonight’s SQL meeting, he mentioned the SQL Server MVP Deep Dive. Take 53 SQL Server MVPs who are all passionate about one part or another of SQL Server – covering Database Design and Architecture, Database Development, Database Administration, Performance Tuning and Optimization, and BI Development – and the right publisher – Manning – and you get an amazing deal.

When I originally heard about this on Twitter, there was a lot of tweeting going on about it. From what Allen said tonight, they sold out of the 150 copies that they had at PASS. And typically, a book at PASS might sell 20 copies, but 150… that’s unheard of!

But wait, there’s more! These authors aren’t collecting any royalties on their book. Instead, 100% of the royalties – that’s right, 100%, all of the royalties – are getting donated to War Child International.

Sure, you can purchase the book through other booksellers, but if you want to make sure that most of your money makes it to the charity, order your book directly through Manning. The other retailers will take their cut of the sales before getting the money to Manning, who’ll then get it to the charity.

If you want a book that covers a little of everything from the top SQL talent in the MS SQL Server community, I highly recommend you check this out.

Zune HD + Audiobooks = Improved!

Disclaimer: Although I work for a company that deals with audiobooks, these thoughts, comments, complaints, and affirmations are my own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of my employer.

While I was listening to some of my audiobooks on my Zune HD at work today, I noticed that something changed (or that for as much complaining as I do about this, no one ever pointed it out to me).

So let’s say you have some audiobooks on your Zune HD.

1. Turn on your Zune HD.
2. Touch “audiobooks”.
3. Press one of the titles to bring up the “Pin to Quickplay” menu.

Do you see it? What’s that option underneath it? Is it really… a Delete option?

I couldn’t believe that I was seeing it. But I upgraded my Zune HD’s firmware over the weekend, so maybe it’s one of the cool new features in the new firmware.

Thankfully, I had an audiobook that I needed to delete. So here’s what I did…

1. Start up OverDrive Media Console.
2. Start the transfer wizard to get into the Advanced Options and Browse the files.
3. Verify that there are files for that audiobook on the Zune HD.
4. On the device, get to the “audiobooks” list.
5. Bring up the menu I mentioned above and press Delete.
6. Confirm the delete.
7. Repeat steps 1 and 2.
8. Verify that those files are no longer there.

Finally… an easy way to delete audiobooks from the Zune HD!

There’s still no option in the software to manage audiobooks, but now we can simply delete them from the device.

Way to go, Zune HD team!