James O'Neill's blog

Windows Platform, Virtualization and PowerShell with a little Photography for good measure.

May, 2006

  • Programming RSS - a complete reader in just 90 lines of code !

    I know - platfrom folks shouldn't do code. But yesterday I wrote my first "proper" program in nearly 2 years. My university lecturers would hate me to call VB "proper" programming: but although I've done a some scripting I haven't written anything with...
  • Groove and Mind Mapping

    In my post last Friday I mentioned installing Groove and the Mind Genius Mind mapping software which I use so much. When I had trouble explaining what Groove 3.1 did, I made a mind map - which has now been given the Mind Genius V2 treatment. ...
  • Vista DOES HAVE Podcasting! (but it’s a bit ugly). The RSS screen saver is built in too..

    Regular readers (if I have any) will know that RSS is one of my interests. So I noticed Robert Scoble’s post “Windows Media 11’s lack of Podcasting gets noticed” which in turn followed up a post on Geek News Central For background: Podcasts...
  • RSS Stumbler now available for download

    It was a pleasant surprise to get a mention from Robert Scoble , for my "RSS in 90 lines of code", and the I'm pleased to announce that it is available for download. Before give you the link, please be aware that Only the source code is included...
  • The Mis-appliance of science pt2 – working for Microsoft

    Microsoft is a better place to work than it was last week. I was out of the country on Friday. My phone downloaded the start of a long mail from Lisa Brummel – who I mentioned recently : A mail from a major name saying he was excited by Lisa’s mail...
  • On Taxonomy …

    The following dates from 2002 when I was working a with Sharepoint Portal Server 2001. We used to talk a lot about meta-data (data about the data - file properties) and Taxonomy - the method we use to classify documents. I came up with a Taxonomy Ten...
  • Media Centre Edition is dead, Long live Windows Media Centre.

    I want an Xbox 360. Someone gave me an original Xbox and the games still impresses me. When I got the Xbox I already had a cable TV decoder, VCR, and DVD player lashed into the back of the TV. I gave the DVD player to my Dad because the Xbox did that...
  • Save the Planet with a little at a time with Windows Vista

    You may have heard claims about how Vista can help you save electricity. It has 3 features which play a role in this. Firstly it's "Sleep" and Hibernate modes work better than their equivalents in XP - various things have lost their veto over Hibernation...
  • The Mis-appliance of science pt1 – talking about the benefits of Vista

    Talking about cost of ownership on its own is nuts. There, I’ve come out and said it. There are two sides in most economic decisions, the gain side and the cost side. You can’t make a decision based on just one. So anyone with a budget should ask ...
  • Woof-woof: feed me that dog-food

    Unexpectedly a new-ish laptop came my way on Wednesday. Pre-installed on it were newer builds of Windows Vista and Office 2007 than I had been using. There was little else besides the standard Anti-virus product, and yesterday morning Windows defender...
  • Save the Planet with a little at a time [part 2]

    One of the nice things about the new job is I get to walk round and bump into people I haven't spoken to for ages. Sharon left Microsoft a few months ago, and was sitting in the coffee bar when I walked by on Thursday. Her web-site is called "joining...
  • Get the search you want in IE7

    I guess people who worked for Microsoft a few years ago must have some idea what it's like to be Google right now. A huge market share means people want to criticize you, you seek solace by watching your stock price, but that only makes you worry that...
  • Got the search I want in IE7

    So, last week I was talking about " getting the search you want " this morning I was looking for some information on Microsoft's intranet. We're testing the next version of sharepoint search internally and I as I putting my search in I was thinking, ...
  • When was the last time you looked at Word and said “now THAT is cool” ?

    This post, and the last one were made from Word 2007 Beta. I don’t mean typed and spell checked in word, then copied out to notepad, to strip words extra tags, then copied into the blogging engine, reformatted, links re-instated and posted . I do mean...
  • Exploring Vista explorer

    Vista feels different even before you log on. The logon process itself has changed: fast user switching is longer disabled when the machine joins a domain. Smart card logon needs Ctrl-alt-del to start it (at least with this build and my smart card reader...
  • Longhorn Beta 2 also now out

    John Howard – who did this job before moving to the Virtualization group in Redmond - told me to look out interesting stuff at the WinHEC conference which is happening now. Bill Gates’ keynote is online now [the time differences and yesterdays travel...
  • Vista beta 2 released

    More details here . I've been saying for some time now: wait for beta 2 it is a big improvement over some of the other pre-release editions.
  • Slides from Tuesday

    I've had several requests for this week's "Let's look at vista" slide deck. The slides are in the technet archive
  • One care now available.

    One good thing about getting BBC news as an RSS feed in Outlook, is headlines like “ Microsoft Debuts security package ” get my attention. Windows Live One Care is now available for users of Windows XP.
  • Now on the Vista web site...

    You get some idea how important vista is going to be when a web-site update makes the BBC news site . I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve been asked what the hardware requirements for Vista will be. It’s now on the Vista Web Site start looking...
  • Who's taking the Wii ?

    Back in the 1990s when I was working for a Microsoft partner I read Douglas Coupland's novel "Microserfs" The story starts inside Microsoft, and the narrator talks about hanging with the cool guys at Nintendo on the other side of I520 from his building...