large files

Spent some time today working on importing a largish XML file (approx 46MB) into SQL Server. I didn’t spend any time thinking about the best way to do it, just the only way I knew how… read it into memory, parse out the parts you want.. it was taking 90 seconds just to read it into memory. Is there a better way?

This is a pretty cool way to look at your outlook mail.

tourist day in Boston

Friday night Karen and I drove to Maine to pick up a friend (hi April!) from California who is visiting the East Coast for the summer to show her Boston on Saturday/Sunday.

Had dinner Friday night @ Wild Willy’s, a mom and pop burger joint in York (have the Bubba burger if you get a chance). Drove home.

Saturday we got up, Karen made Chocolate Chip and Dried Cherry Scones. Drove into Boston. Parked at the Common. We thought we’d get the 30,000 view first so we walked to the John Hancock tower, which ended up being closed. Walked to the Prudential instead. Got some pictures of Fenway, the Hancock Tower, and the Charles.

Then we bought Old Town Trolley passes and hopped on the Trolley. Got off in the Fort Point Channel district, saw the Boston Tea Party replica. Had lunch (King Crab legs, a Jonah crab, chowda, cob, and melon).

Walked to the Aquarium. Got back on the Trolley. Took the trolley to the USS Constitution, aka “Old Ironsides” (pictures: here, here, and here). Took the tour of the USS Constitution. Walked the USS Casspin (a US Navy World War II Destroyer! try to find the Hedgehogs if you ever visit!). Trolley’ed again.

Walked through Beacon Hill. Saw the Bull & Finch Pub (inspiration for Cheers). Walked to the famous ducks in the Garden, took pictures.

T’ed it to Harvard Square. Walked through Harvard’s campus. Saw the Memorial Church of Harvard University. Took pictures of the church.

T’ed it to Park Street. Walked to the North End while taking pictures. Had dinner @ Rossina. Walked to see the Feast. Walked to Mike’s Pastries. Got dessert.

Walked (w/ dessert) through the North End, Hay Market Square, the Holocaust Memorial, Government Center, and down Tremont Street to lay on the grass and watch some of Shakespeare on the Common: Henry V. Ate our dessert (tiramuso, lemon tarte, and chocolate eclaire). Watched the stars and took blurry pictures (can someone help me figure out how to take pictures at night?). Walked to Loews Theater. Watched Minority Report. Movie ends at 1am. In bed by 2am. What a day!

weekend starts today

next birthday I want this. If you think it’s science fiction, check out the movie. Amazing. Can I add it to my Amazon wishlist?

took the day off today, so my weekend starts today. I’m working outta my wife’s office because our house doesn’t have A/C and it’s sticky hot outside.

Ben Forta wrote an article on CF that showed up on meerkat & xml.com (i’m assuming because it mentioned XML). Notice that they’re running CFMX, an Access database, and no error handling. Poor, poor development practices. Come on guys!

What an interesting movement this is (found here). The mailling list lives here.

xml

tomorrow @ MINDSEYE I’m giving a presentation to management/design/creative on XML, basically a high level overview of what it is and how they should be thinking about it. After working with Spectra, which used a pseudo XML called WDDX to store data, I’ve created a couple different methods (CF/ASP/JSP) of managing data in web applications, but none of them have been automatic, meaning you couldn’t just send fire method x on object A and persist the data to the db. Data Binding or data persistence does do that… I just haven’t been able to use it in a site yet… so, here’s a link to an article on xml.com about data binding and XML which compares .NET to Java’s open source castor framework. Really interesting. I need this book too.

a new Kephart

Our friends Craig and Kristen Kephart, who live up in beautful York, Maine, just had their second. Pictures are here. Coincidentally (or not?), Money Magazine just picked York as one of the top ten places to vacation in the entire US. If you ever get to York, you definitely have to go to Browns Ice Cream. And after you eat ice cream, drive back north (toward Short Sands Beach) on Broadway and turn right on Ocean Ave. Better yet, walk.

the race

Karen won… well, she finished. 12 miles of biking, 800 meter swim, 3 miles running.. pictures here.

From robots.net: Micromechanical Flying Insects. Essentially scientists are trying to reproduce the fly. Our flying drones supposedly have scared Saddam Hussein into not appearing in public. Can you imagine what life would be like if we had autonomous flies!??? Sheesh, that’s cool and scary at the same time.

Would you believe that there is an Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International?

finished

finished Pilgrim at Tinker Creek… I guess the nap this afternoon gave me enough juice to finish it out. I read books quickly.. I’m sure there are lots of things I don’t even pick up, just like a complicated movie, sometimes you have to see/read it twice, but I usually remember the stories and this book had a great number of them (muskrats… the frog & the giant water bug, grasshoppers and locusts). From the last chapter, page 275:

“There is not a guarantee in the world. Oh your needs are guaranteed, your needs are absolutely guaranteed by the most stringent of warranties, in the plainest, truest words: knock, seek, ask. But you must read the fine print. ‘Not as the world giveth, give I unto you.’ That’s the catch. If you can catch it will catch you up, aloft, up to any gap at all, and you’ll come back, for you will come back, transformed in a way you may not have bargained for — dribbling and crazed. The waters of separation, however lightly sprinkled, leave indelible stains. Did you think, before you were caught, that you needed, say, life? Do you think you will keep your life, or anything else you love? But no. Your needs are all met. But not as the world giveth. You see the needs of your own spirit met whenever you have asked, and you have learned that outrageous guarantee holds. You see the creatures die and you know you will die. And one day it occurs to you that you must not need life. Obviously. And then you’re gone. You have finally understood that you’re dealing with a maniac.”

Now with 50% less caffeine!