Brian Conrad

Software Development and More.

Going Universal

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Continuing on the Universal Windows Platform track, last fall I started working with Xamarin Forms in Microsoft’s Visual Studio. I had done several apps using .NET and Microsoft Forms but Xamarin offered a way to create one app using the UWP (Universal Windows Platform) to create an app for Android, Windows and iOS. I’ve had a number of requests for iOS apps over the years but I shied away from doing them because 1) I didn’t own a Mac and 2) nor did I want to invest time in learning Objective C which has little use outside of Apple products.

Over the Top Programming Examples

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One of the problems I run into developing for a new platform, SDK or toolset is finding examples that are not “over the top”. Seems that some of the SDK developers feel the need to write a kitchen sink example that you have to wade through to just figure out how something works. It’s like their kitchen sink (or Swiss army knife) is intended to be a resume for their next job instead of helping developers get up and running quickly.

Finding This

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Since I own my name as a domain and have had a blog for years I was a little puzzled when folks I used to work with had trouble locating me on the Internet. I don’t have a Facebook page but have had a LinkedIn account for years which is how some old friends found me. It used to be that a search on my name would list the blog on the first page.

I guess I'm not a blogger

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It’s been months since I’ve written anything here. I’ve been busy with some projects that have taken a lot of time. Usual excuse, huh? What I’m confronting now are two upgrades of development machines. The machine I’m writing this on is a 4 year old Linux box running Ubuntu Studio. It’s plenty fast except for one thing: it can’t run Android emulators very fast at all. Seems that each rev of Android needs more speed.

FCC Rules Published

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The FCC rules for Net Neutrality have been published in PDF format, so you can peruse the 320 pages and 80 pages of dissent and comments. So far I’ve made it through 12 pages which is probably more pages read than read by visitors on this site. https://apps.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-15-24A1.pdf Whadya think?

Net Neutrality:Where's the Rules?

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It’s been about a week alread after the FCC voted on the Net Neutrality rules. As yet we’ve been unable to see them so much of what has been written has been speculation. I suspect that the delay of making the rules available to the public is that they must be released in print from the Government Printing Office as they are released in PDF form online. I believe this has happened before.

I like Mark Cuban's movies but...

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I seem to watch a lot of movies that Mark Cuban’s Magnolia Films and Magnet distribute. His company is a venue for movies that would be playing art houses if they hadn’t disappeared from the landscape. However I feel his is a little off in his concern about the proposed FCC rules regardling Net Neutrality. Wealth apparently has it’s priviledges as he apparently has been able to review the 332 pages of rules the FCC wants to pass.

Democratizing the Arts

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Back in the day to be in the arts was a risky career choice. Hence the term “starving artist”. I was told this when I was a kid but it was like holding up a red cape at a bull. So I chose a career in music. I began my professional career at age 15 when local musicians had a problem finding available drummers for their weekend gigs. This even required getting an approval from the national offices of the American Federation of Musicians.

Changing the Scenery

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An update to my personal site was long overdue. I had checked out a variety of different templates and open source web design systems to update my JyotishTools.com site. These included Bootstrap, Jekyll, and MiddleMan. I settled on Hugo as it was just an app to install and runs from the command line. With the other systems you need to make sure you had all the correct versions of Rails and Rake.