Notice: I no longer maintain this site regularly. While some content is still relevant, most of it will be migrated to my company site soon. To see what I'm up to go to focuslabllc.com.


Online Invoicing and Accounting

For the past two years I've been a happy customer of Freshbooks (referral link). There came a time, fairly early on, when my business partner and I realized we needed a better system for invoicing our clients. We were a young company still figuring some basic things out. After looking around at various solutions we landed on Freshbooks. I can't say how much hassle their service has saved us these past two years. With those kind words said, I must admit that we're actively looking for the "next step."

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There Is No Spoon

There Is No Spoon

This post is for my fellow EE'ers. I will not be using full names or many links and will not be educating you on what happened as this is intended for people who are already aware of the scenario. If you'd like to read about it I suggest reading EE Insider's post "The Matrices" or Travis Smith's post "The FieldFrame Controversy Explained". They are both 3rd party views on the event and recommended readings with good insight. This purpose of this post is not to explain what happened, but rather to expand on and clarify some of my personal thoughts.

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Programming Flashback

Programming Flashback

As noted on my obligatory "about" page I started my development with HTML 3.2 while in middle school. The vast majority of my development experience has been with the web but while I was in high school I didn't have the opportunity to carry around a laptop from which I could work. Somewhere along the way I started using Texas Instruments (TI) graphing calculators. One of the fun things about these calculators was that you could easily write your own programs in BASIC directly from the device and run them. This is a great time passer...during class (I wonder if mom and/or dad read this blog). Today I found an archive download online for a TI-89 application I wrote and I wanted to share the "readme" file with everyone. It's funny.

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ExpressionEngine Add-On Pricing: Decisions

First let me thank everyone who participated in the discussion about add-on pricing. There were many great thoughts shared and it helped me make my decision on add-on pricing. What I have decided is to stick closely to what EllisLab already does with ExpressionEngine. The exception will be MSM sites. Essentially I will sell one license per installation of ExpressionEngine. So if you run a single domain or 100 domains off of a single EE install you will only require a single license from me. I will stick closely to the volume discount rates that EllisLab has setup which is outlined on this page.

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Error 5103 in iTunes

Error 5103 in iTunes

Tonight I felt like renting the new Star Trek movie in iTunes. I'd heard really good things about it and had wanted to rent it for some time. My wonderful wife bought me an iTunes gift card for Christmas so I wanted to start putting it to good use. The nearly 4GB download finally finished (HD rental) and I was ready to start the movie. After clicking play I received a dialog box with error code 5103. I ran Software Update to make sure I had the latest version of iTunes hoping that it would be a simple fix. That didn't do it. After some digging I got it going and now I'm sitting here enjoying this action-packed opening sequence. Here's what I found:

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2010 Changes

For some reason I feel like sharing some things I intend to do in 2010. I've never really been one for resolutions but I do set "goals" to some degree of the word. Typically I just aim to achieve something but not particularly by a certain date. For 2010 I will keep that pattern and not really set dates for my personal goals. That said, here are some things I'm working on.

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ExpressionEngine Add-On Pricing

ExpressionEngine Add-On Pricing

There is an interesting thing going on in the ExpressionEngine community right now. More developers are realizing that they should actually get paid for their public add-on development. I'd venture to say that most developers who release public add-ons got their start by fulfilling a need for a specific client project. I know that was the case for me. I needed a few features in EE that weren't available any other way, 1st or 3rd party (hey! what ever happened to the 2nd party and why don't we ever mention them). Considering that detail, most add-on developers were originally paid for their development. Somewhere along the way these add-ons, not just for ExpressionEngine but for software in general, became commonly distributed freely. Don't get me wrong, I love free software. I love using it and certainly enjoy creating and sharing it. That said, we all have mouths to feed. Some of us more than others.

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Shopping for Headphones

Shopping for Headphones

I love music. Simple. It's always been an important part of me (and my family for that matter) and it's a piece of every single day of my life. Whether I'm singing around the house to the soundtrack in my head, just listening to iTunes or playing guitar, music makes its way into my day.

I'm most effective in development/programming when I'm listening to really good music. A while back I made a playlist in iTunes called Now This I Can Work To. It contains about 9 hours of music which typically gets me through a work day, if necessary. I also love listening to Pandora stations. So, the time has come for me to shop around for some new headphones so I thought I'd share my thoughts.

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My Mom Hacked Devot:ee

Apparently my mom hacked Devot:ee this weekend.

I am a big fan of the ExpressionEngine community. I've enjoyed being a part of online communities since creating my first little community called Servants of God (later called TeenZion) to the good ole days of being a moderator at flashkit.com. Over the years I don't think I've experienced one quite like what EllisLab has built around their products. Devot:ee is a popular community-driven "fan site" for ExpressionEngine. I have some of my EE add-ons listed there as do many other developers. Devot:ee is actually a big contributor to my growth in add-on development. Without that site I wouldn't know about half of the add-ons I now have experience with. Anyways, on to the story about my mom.

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A Big Thank You

A Big Thank You

Last Sunday, the 15th, my wife and I took our 16-month old to the emergency room. Being me, I kept a lot of people updated via Twitter and Facebook. For those of you who don't know, I actually keep my Twitter and Facebook interactions fairly separated. I use Twitter for my nerdy/businessy chatter and Facebook for my personal and “hey we went to school together” chatter. Sometimes my message overlaps both realms so I simply use selective twitter status and send the message to twitter.

Over the past week I received a lot of support and kind words from family, friends and colleagues from around the world.

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