Archive for 2010

CakePHP Installation & Configuration

December 15th, 2010 Leave a comment
CakePHP Installation & Configuration

In the past, we have discussed the importance of application frameworks. Frameworks make it easier to write maintainable code and they also provide a shortcut for rapidly developing new web applications. One of the more popular frameworks for use with PHP is CakePHP. CakePHP is a model-view-controller style framework. Structurally, it has many similarities to Ruby based Ruby on Rails web framework. CakePHP is one of the oldest and most robust and stable PHP frameworks on the market. CakePHP is free and open source. They have a manual called the Cookbook that provides… View full post »

PostgreSQL 9.0 Offers Many New Features

December 10th, 2010 Leave a comment
PostgreSQL 9.0 Offers Many New Features

I’ve always loved PostgreSQL. It is my database of choice these days and I use it with both CakePHP and with the Django framework for Python. PostgreSQL has always had a very robust feature set and was one of the first truly ACID compliant open source databases. With the recent release of version 9, PostgreSQL has added a slew of requested features that truly put it above the rest. The biggest new feature in Postgres 9.0 is streaming replication. As many have noted, third party solutions for this have existed for some time but now there is… View full post »

Best jQuery Plugins for Your Website – Our Top 10 Choices

December 7th, 2010 Leave a comment
Best jQuery Plugins for Your Website - Our Top 10 Choices

Web design, like any type of design, moves through times when certain styles and paradigms are popular. Creating some of the currently popular visual effects can be a difficult task. Added to this challenge are a number of common problems that web developers encounter. Here are 10 jQuery plugins that will help you create stunning visual effects on your web sites and solve many common web application challenges. Google Feed API Plugin http://plugins.jquery.com/project/jgfeed One common web development task is to include content from another web site or blog on a page. Often this is done in a sidebar or… View full post »

Apple, Google and Microsoft – Who Will Be Victorious?

December 1st, 2010 Leave a comment
Apple, Google and Microsoft - Who Will Be Victorious?

Recently there as been a lot of news and analysis about the relative positions of Google, Microsoft and Apple in the IT industry. In many ways, it appears that the three companies are bitter rivals and locked in a struggle to dominant the future of computing. The question many people are asking is how will this competition play out? Who will ultimately be left standing when the dust settles? Apple has made a pretty spectacular rise lately. The media really grabbed onto the fact that Apple’s market capitalization recently bypassed Microsoft. There has been a lot… View full post »

How to Help IT Recruiter Get You Hired

November 23rd, 2010 Leave a comment
How to Help IT Recruiter Get You Hired

If you are just starting out in your IT career or trying to find a position in a slow economy, you might want to consider being a contractor or consultant. Typically, consultants are hired by IT firms and they then work on-site with the firm’s client on a specific project. Typically, a consultant’s contract will be 3-6 months in length and will specify the role they will fulfill on the client’s project. The first step to getting a contract position is to get noticed by an IT recruiter. Recruiters are not Technical IT recruiters work for IT consulting firms… View full post »

Introducing HTML5 Book Review

November 17th, 2010 Leave a comment
Introducing HTML5 Book Review

HTML5 is the developing new standard for HTML. It has received a lot of attention lately due to Apple providing some impressive demos of its capabilities. For the Apple iPad, HTML 5 is being offered as the alternative to Flash. As a result, a lot of hype and myths abound about HTML 5, its capabilities and browser support of it. I often read books on new and emerging technologies to keep my own skills sharp. Recently, one of these books was Introducing HTML5 (Voices That Matter) by Bruce Lawson and Remy Sharp. New Structural Elements I would… View full post »

HTML5 Intro: Use It Today!

November 14th, 2010 Leave a comment
HTML5 Intro: Use It Today!

Ever since Apple announced that they would not be supporting Flash in favor of the multimedia features of HTML5, there has been a lot of media attention on HTML5. Unfortunately, along with the media coverage there has been a tremendous amount of myth and misrepresentation regarding the level of browser support for HTML5. I’ve even heard some designers say that HTML5 won’t be ready until 2012 and that we should all sit tight and wait for it! The truth is that many of the elements of HTML5 are available for use today and browser support is pretty… View full post »

OWASP – the Open Web Application Security Project

November 9th, 2010 Leave a comment
OWASP - the Open Web Application Security Project

Web applications are difficult to secure. This is a well known fact. Hardly a day goes by that we do not hear a media story about a data security breach at some commercial site. Part of the challenge of securing web applications is that platforms can differ so much and the typical web application functions on multiple levels, protocols and software stacks. To help companies and developers with the tremendous task of securing web applications, OWASP was formed. OWASP or the Open Web Application Security Project is a global 501(c)(3) non profit organization dedicated to making the… View full post »

Blueprint CSS – Framework for Grid Based Design

November 5th, 2010 Leave a comment
Blueprint CSS - Framework for Grid Based Design

Creating CSS for a web site can be a complicated affair. There are many different compatibility issues and various fixes and hacks to make different browser behave properly. Many web site designs are based on a grid. CSS frameworks abstract the common elements of grid based design into a series of CSS classes to simplify the creation of stylesheets. These frameworks also incorporate the most common browser fixes and hacks to make the process of writing cross-browser CSS transparent. One of the more popular CSS frameworks is Blueprint. What is Grid Based Design? Grids are a frequently… View full post »

PHP 5: Your Visual Blueprint for Creating Open Source, Server-Side Content Book Review

November 3rd, 2010 Leave a comment
PHP 5: Your Visual Blueprint for Creating Open Source, Server-Side Content Book Review

I am often asked for book recommendations by friends and associates wanting to learn new technologies or programming languages. The request I get most often though is for a good book to learn PHP. Recently, I read PHP 5: Your Visual Blueprint for Creating Open Source, Server-Side Content by Toby Joe Boudreaux. I figured it might make a good review for me on the changes in PHP 5 and it looked like a book that I could potentially recommend to new PHP programmers. Visuals This book takes a rather unique approach to teaching PHP 5. It’s part of Wiley’s… View full post »

Best Free Android Apps for Network Professionals

October 28th, 2010 (Guest Blogger)Leave a comment
Best Free Android Apps for Network Professionals

Network professionals often find themselves on call. All too often, something simple pops up during these on-call periods that could be quickly resolved with the right tools. As a result, many network professionals find themselves lugging around a laptop “just in case”. However, Android phones are now capable of running a number of network applications that can greatly simplify those quick fixes. While they won’t replace the PC versions and they won’t always solve your problem, these 7 applications are indispensable to a network professional and may even save you from dragging out your laptop. Ping This handy… View full post »

jQuery in Action Book Review

October 26th, 2010 Leave a comment
jQuery in Action Book Review

I’ve always been very good at keeping my skills sharp and learning new technologies as they emerge. My favorite way to do so has often been to read books on various IT topics and to experiment. It’s only natural that associates and friends often ask me to recommend books to them. I’ve been using jQuery for about 3 years now for most of my JavaScript development and wanted to get a more in-depth understanding of it. To do so, I turned to jQuery in Action, Second Edition by Bear Bibeault and Yehuda Katz. I really cannot recommend… View full post »

Google Analytics – Maximizing Keyword Reports

October 25th, 2010 Leave a comment
Google Analytics - Maximizing Keyword Reports

Imagine a far-too-common scenario where you run a test search query and notice that your ad has shifted from position 1 to the right sidebar in position 5. Before immediately shifting your bids to return to the previous position, you may want to evaluate the relative return from each position. Focusing on bid costs or conversions independently is not enough since only a complete Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) analysis will help you determine the relative merits of each position. With Google Analytics you can track the results from each keyword position by accessing the report under the AdWords section… View full post »

Check for Available Username with CakePHP, Ajax and jQuery

September 27th, 2010 Leave a comment
Check for Available Username with CakePHP, Ajax and jQuery

When a user registers for your web site, it is usually a requirement that they have to select a unique username. It can be a pain when your usual usernames are taken. You keep submitting the form just to wait and then see an error message that the username is already taken. Using Ajax to check and see if a username is available before the user submits the form will make your registration page more friendly. Here is one method for doing it using CakePHP, Ajax and jQuery. First, we are going to create a very lighweight… View full post »

IPsec Site-to-Site VPN Best Practices

September 22nd, 2010 (Guest Blogger)Leave a comment
IPsec Site-to-Site VPN Best Practices

It has been a common case for enterprises to implement a site-to-site VPN solution to connect its central office to remote offices. In some cases when leased line is the primary path between the two locations, site-to-site VPN can serve as a backup solution if primary path is to fail. Obviously, if you have to select the right site-to-site VPN solution today, there are lots of options out there with companies like Cisco and Juniper dominating that market. In order to build the right and affordable solution – you should thoroughly analyze your requirements. Will you require a built-in redundancy and… View full post »