Big Data Overview Course: Why Everyone Should Take It

March 11th, 2013 Leave a comment
Big Data Overview Course: Why Everyone Should Take It

Google. Facebook. Github. Twitter. LinkedIn. Microsoft. Any of these names sound familiar to you? I’d imagine they do: they’re some of the many big names in the technology and web industry today, and they all share one very important thing in common: they’re processing terabytes, sometimes even petabytes, of data a day. This means they need a reliable, robust, and scalable network architecture that can meet the growing demand they have for data processing each day: a network architecture that includes services and software like NoSQL, Hadoop, BigTable, and MapReduce. Each one of these tools is a very specialized software solution designed… View full post »

Has PHP Killed JSP?

March 7th, 2013 Leave a comment
Has PHP Killed JSP?

Having recently written an article on Apache vs Tomcat, someone commented to me that they had never had occasion to use Tomcat: since they had started web developing, PHP had been the dominant language on the web landscape, and they saw no reason to learn JSP. In fact, they asserted that JSP is a dying language- one that PHP has effectively superseded. Were they right? According to a W3Techs.com study, as of February 2012 PHP held a commanding lead in web presence: of the dynamic sites evaluated, 75% used PHP. JSP’s share was a stark contrast, trailing at 10%. It would… View full post »

Best Big Data Books: Our Top 5 Choices

February 13th, 2013 Leave a comment
Best Big Data Books: Our Top 5 Choices

Big data has been a huge part of infrastructure in the past couple of years, but it’s new enough that not many people are fully versed in its intricacies. To help out in that regard, here are some of our favorite big data books that have come out recently that can help you be your office’s Hadoop Hero (or other alliterative pun!): 1. Hadoop in Practice By Alex Holmes Hadoop in Practice makes my list for Big Data because it’s not necessarily just a Hadoop manual that explains the ins and outs of Hadoop – it’s more of a guide for someone out… View full post »

Best Android Books: Top 5 Choices For 2013

February 7th, 2013 Leave a comment
Best Android Books: Top 5 Choices For 2013

2013 has come to us, and we’ve noticed that our Best Android Books: My Top 5 Choices post has still been getting quite a few hits recently. Unfortunately, it’s been awhile and some of the books on the list are a bit out of date – with that in mind, we’ve gone looking for some new, cutting-edge Android books to help you be at the top of your Android development game! 1. Professional Android 4 Development By Reto Meier I was quite impressed with Reto Meier’s breadth in this book – while many developers are fluent in Android 2, for the most part… View full post »

PHP Templating: Pros and Cons

February 3rd, 2013 Leave a comment
PHP Templating: Pros and Cons

Quite a few people now have started using and enjoying templating systems in PHP to more cleanly separate design and development. For those unfamiliar with the term, PHP templating is a system (like “Smarty”, one of the most popular for PHP) that allows programmers to divide application logic from content presentation. It uses tag-based mechanics to allow “tags” defined in HTML files to be replaced by data that is generated by PHP code behind the scenes. It makes for very nice and usable templating, as opposed to the sometimes-messy approach of blocking off sections of <?php tags and having dozens… View full post »

Android Context Menu Tutorial

January 31st, 2013 Leave a comment
Android Context Menu Tutorial

The context menu in Android is vital to many applications – the best way to think about it is to equate it with a right-click on a normal desktop computer. If you long-press a view in an app, it expands a similar list and you can take certain actions with them that you would not be able to do with regular clicks alone; while many different customizations and actions can be performed with single presses or hard menu buttons, often the quickest and most user-friendly way to implement an action is through the use of these “right-click” or “long-press” menus,… View full post »

5 Useful Android Code Snippets

January 12th, 2013 Leave a comment
5 Useful Android Code Snippets

Sometimes it’s hard to make Android programs without trying to reinvent the wheel: often there are simple tasks that aren’t obvious at the start, and it can be more trouble than it’s worth writing them from scratch. To help make your code writing process easier, here are 5 Android code snippets for some common tasks that may not be obvious! 1. Reading a Text File from A Device SD Card This one is a snippet that’s often used simply because it’s a common use case- the way to do it, however, isn’t always obvious. Here’s a snippet to help you read… View full post »

Top 5 Small Business Switches

January 7th, 2013 (Guest Blogger)Leave a comment
Top 5 Small Business Switches

Small businesses can sometimes have a tough time buying networking equipment. The problem isn’t always a matter of knowing which networking equipment is the best- heavyweights like Cisco, Juniper, and HP have long been providing enterprise-quality switches, routers, and firewalls that are time-tested and well-known for being fast, reliable, and stable. The problem is often the cost- that equipment can cost upwards of thousands of dollars, a budget that often isn’t at all feasible for small businesses. Thankfully, however, there are high-performing, stable, and reliable switches for the small business market that come in at under $1000 and are still… View full post »

jQuery Tabs Tutorial

December 26th, 2012 Leave a comment
jQuery Tabs Tutorial

jQuery tabs on content have become a stylish addition to Web 2.0 websites, but it’s not always obvious just how to make them work, and many people have been writing up tutorials on how to write your own tab scripts using jQuery. Thankfully, however, there’s an addition to jQuery called jQueryUI that includes tab support and pre-built tab functions so you don’t have to roll your own every time you write a website. Here’s a quick tutorial on how to get them up and running on your website! Method A: The Conventional Way jQueryUI now supports tabs as part of its integrated… View full post »

Top 5 Android ROMs

December 23rd, 2012 Leave a comment
Top 5 Android ROMs

Part of the appeal of the Android operating system is the great customization and configuration that it gives users due to its open-source nature, and many developers have taken it upon themselves to offer up customizations of the stock operating systems for various reasons, including speed, aesthetic, feature-set, and others. Because of the wide distribution of Android ROMs out there, it can be tough to decide which one you want to test-run. We’ve taken a look at a few and we’ve picked out our top 5 Android ROMs to help you decide which ROM to run on your Android phone! 1…. View full post »

jQuery Tutorial: Scrolling Effects With Anchor Links

December 20th, 2012 Leave a comment
jQuery Tutorial: Scrolling Effects With Anchor Links

Sometimes you’ll want to use anchor text in a page, but you don’t want any old boring anchor scroll. The instant click-through to anchor links is devoid of any interesting flair, and that’s no longer a viable option in today’s Web landscape. Web 2.0 is all about having smooth effects to go with your buttons and bevels, and so maybe you want a cool scrolling effect for your anchor links on your site. Here’s a quick and easy way to get that on your page! Step 1: Create The Anchor Link You’re going to want this in the part you want to… View full post »

Is jQuery Right For Your App?

December 17th, 2012 Leave a comment
Is jQuery Right For Your App?

jQuery has taken over in the application-building world, and people have been using it left and right to build new applications, from hobbyist projects to large-scale, enterprise-level applications. There are, however, other toolkits like dojo out there that offer alternatives to jQuery: should you always use jQuery, or is there a reason to switch to one of those other toolkits when the need arises? First off, it’s always a safe bet to use what you know. If you’re familiar with the jQuery library, it’s almost certain that you’re going to do faster, better work with jQuery than you would with another… View full post »

5 More Useful PHP Snippets

December 14th, 2012 Leave a comment 1 comment
5 More Useful PHP Snippets

Given the success of our last PHP Snippets article, we’ve decided to go ahead and find a few more useful PHP snippets. Without further ado, here are some more useful (and a bit more complex) PHP snippets for use! 1. Generating CSV Many people have come up with their own functions for generating CSVs, but the problem is that many of them fail to take into account wayward quotation marks or apostrophes that will bring down their CSV and make it harder to parse later. A much better idea is to take those into account, like so: function make_csv(array $to_csv, $file = false)… View full post »

Finding The Optimal Minimum Split Count For Your Hadoop Job

December 11th, 2012 Leave a comment
Finding The Optimal Minimum Split Count For Your Hadoop Job

Figuring out ways to optimize Hadoop isn’t always easy, and one part of the job that’s often overlooked is the split size / split count of a Hadoop job. Most people often leave it alone to the preset defaults, but are the preset defaults right for you? Let’s find out! When you’re looking at minimum split count, you want to look at a great deal of things: one of the most important ones is the map task capacity of the cluster for the particular job at head. Let’s say, for example, that a particular cluster has a map task capacity of… View full post »

Hadoop: The Definitive Guide Book Review

December 8th, 2012 Leave a comment
Hadoop: The Definitive Guide Book Review

By Tom White Hadoop is great idea for a framework, and it’s been one of a few game-changers in the open source world in the past few years. It’s designed to distribute processing for many large datasets across a machine cluster so that the dataset can be processed in parallel. The fact that it’s open-source and free is another bonus- there’s no cost to try out the software and see if it fits your needs, and it’s enabled many companies to sift through large datasets that they otherwise would have had to buy expensive proprietary software for. As might be expected,… View full post »