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Website Monitoring Services

July 12, 2009

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Website Monitoring Services

Following the migration of a number of my websites from physical servers to virtualised hosting, many of the sites experienced worrying outages. I subsequently went in search of a decent web server monitoring service that could shed some light on the actual downtime. The following is a review of the top 3 of those services, along with screenshots and recommendations.

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Cancelling Rhapsody

June 24, 2009

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Cancelling Rhapsody

I’ve been a long-time subscriber of Rhapsody’s music service (since 2005), but recently I decided to switch because of many little annoyances that finally made it almost unbearable to use. I may do a Rhapsody vs. Napster comparison at some point in the future, but today I thought I’d share my experience with trying to […]

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Wolfram|Alpha answers life’s tough questions

June 5, 2009

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Wolfram|Alpha answers life’s tough questions

The new Wolfram|Alpha “computational knowledge engine” is the coolest thing I’ve seen in a long while. My first impression was that this was just a big fancy calculator to help people solve NP-complete problems and complex differential equations and whatnot. Not that this wouldn’t be impressive in its own right, but it’s not exactly something […]

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HD Resolution Smackdown: BluRay vs AppleTV vs DVD

May 18, 2009

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HD Resolution Smackdown: BluRay vs AppleTV vs DVD

HD, SD, 720p, 1080p & Upscaling – wheat from chaff I once penned an email to my friend (Sarah) extolling my perspective on the relative quality a range media and TV hardware resolutions.  The data was far from scientific, but it’s based on a reasonable exposure to a range of media and output formats.  The […]

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Google Reader iPhone App: problems

May 16, 2009

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Google Reader iPhone App: problems

The Google Reader iPhone App (or any reader application for that matter) and Desktop Readers are the types of interfaces [and if not the model for those] that will eventually the replace age-old practise of scanning broadsheet newspapers, the writing for which is already on the wall.  This makes these types of UIs crucial in […]

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GMail – too much space is never enough

May 16, 2009

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GMail – too much space is never enough

What a full GMail inbox looks like I always wondered what GMail would do if, and whatsmore if I even could, reach/ed the capacity of my GMail account.  Well, as if to prove one of the corollary of Parkinson’s Law, today I discovered the limit of GMail’s patience with by hammering it (as an ’email […]

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How not to write a job posting

April 19, 2009

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How not to write a job posting

I keep an eye on the job market, just so I know who’s hiring, what they’re hiring for, and where I fit in with my current skills. I don’t read postings on monster.com or anything like that, I just keep up with a few choice job boards. After reading some well-written postings, it’s easy to […]

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Shaking the phone: a disturbing trend

March 31, 2009

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Shaking the phone: a disturbing trend

I have recently noticed a disturbing trend start to develop in iPhone apps. It’s the “shake the phone to refresh” interaction model (a.k.a. the “Etch A Sketch” interaction model). The worst culprit is the Facebook app which requires the user to shake the phone to see their friends’ latest updates. To any iPhone developers out […]

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Tracking ADSL Data Usage (Bandwidth) on iiNet

January 24, 2009

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Recommended software: iiUsage For those of use below the equator (where data allowances are still measured and capped), monitoring bandwidth usage is usually a case of logging into to ISP control panel page.  iiNet, for example, have Toolbox – a reasonable utility, but a pain to login if all you want to know is our […]

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Proof that Outlook 2007 is a Resource Hog

January 20, 2009

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Having recently doubled my PC memory, I was not surprsied to find that running five fat (‘phat’?) applications at the same was a lot less painful with less need for the OS to use virtual memory (virutal RAM at a snails pace via your hard disk). However, upon returning to my computer today, I was […]

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