Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Book Review: Myths of Innovation (Kindle) by Scott Berkun

This is my review of the Myths of Innovation (Kindle version) by Scott Berkun.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Top Software Testing Books

Is there such a thing as "the" top 10 or 20 Software Testing Books? The type of books that if you were to major in Computer Science or Computer Information Systems with a minor or emphasis in software testing (or software quality assurance) you would be required or recommended to read? These could be anything from practical how-to's to the understanding of software testing's evolution into a modern day field.

A quick search of Amazon Books > Computers & Internet > Software for the term "testing" turns up some 450 results. If you organize those results by bestselling Lessons Learned in Software Testing and Testing Computer Software both by Cem Kaner, et. al. appear on the first page towards the bottom. But why are they the best selling? If you search by relevance you get many more books and those two I mentioned previously come up towards the top. Again why? Perhaps Amazon needs to add a separate category for software testing?

The reason for asking is simple: If you want to get better at something you try and learn as much about the topic as you can. Maybe I should do like other people online and just publish my own?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Action Alerts PLUS subscription

I just signed up for Jim Cramer's Action Alert's Plus service which is his personal charitable portfolio (organized as a trust) that he and his team make investments through and (supposedly) donate the profits. The service comes with a 30 day trial and after that costs roughly $400/year however I was able to find a special offer for only $200/year.

Over the next 30 days to year, depending on how I like it, I will try to review the service so that others may gain a better understanding of how it works.

As of today it looks like Action Alert's Plus portfolio has 33 positions (stocks), it's 2011 YTD performance is at 4.18%, a lifetime return of 34.99% and a value of $3,117,825.00.

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Failed Bloggers Guide to Blogging

I came across this interesting guide / post on blogging. The author makes the point that bloggers have become so obsessed with statistics, improving our rankings and publishing often that we forget that blogging can be a personal thing, a reflection.

He then lays out his "guide" for blogging: Ignore the stats, publish whenever you want, make it personal, keep the default template, etc.

Check out the post:


Monday, May 16, 2011

Cheap Apple iPad's

I was looking around for gifts for Mother's Day when I decided to check out Apple's refurbished products section. It seems a little un-Apple-like to offer older products at a discount for a very long time so they must have over produced the original by a large number. You can still buy refurbished iPad's now 3 months after the launch of version 2. And you can do it for $349 + tax for a 16GB WIFI version with a 1 year warranty from Apple.

So if you want to get into a tablet like the iPad and do it for cheaply a refurbished version is the best way to go. Sure they aren't the latest version but they still work very well. The first version is a little slower, doesn't come with cameras, isn't quite as thin and doesn't have quite the same battery life. It's also $150 cheaper. Any other variation including larger storage and 3G are also discounted quite a bit.

Do yourself a favor and get a Cheap Apple iPad

Introducing the Google ChromeBooks

Today at their I/O conference Google announced two new ChromeOS powered devices called ChromeBooks, one built by Samsung and the other by Acer. Like the CR-48 pilot program Google launched six months ago (which I'm using to write this post) these new ChromeBooks will feature the full size Chrome Keyboard, fast boots and of course the ChromeOS.

The Samsung and Acer ChromeBooks will be available June 15th from Amazon and Best Buy and they will feature many hardware improvements over the pilot program devices including dual-core Atom processors, a better track pad and longer battery life - for all day computing. The dual-core processors should allow for better streaming of movies, something that is incredibly painful today on the pilot devices.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Changing the default search in the location bar for Firefox 4

By default Firefox 4 uses a Google search to help you find any mistyped URL locations or addresses placed into the location bar. Somehow I ended up with Yahoo as the search in my location bar and Firefox doesn't give you an easy option to change it back.

I assume some program that I installed hijacked my location bar search based on this Mozilla support article: http://support.mozilla.com/ast/questions/767962#answer-129005. Fear not, it's easy to change.

To fix the problem you need to edit the Keyword.URL field in the about:config section of Firefox and this article here has the steps on how to do that.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Hulu Plus, Office 365 beta and Google Music Beta

I signed up for Hulu Plus last week when they announced Hulu was available on the Xbox 360. No credit card was required so I signed up. On my computer I use Hulu's desktop application all the time and although I don't currently have my Xbox 360 hooked up I thought it might be worth exploring the new content. Turns out if you have a Netflix subscription Hulu Plus doesn't really offer much in terms of content: X-Files, Serenity, etc. are all available for Netflix streaming. Most other stuff is already free on Hulu. It really seems the only benefit is mobile support but I don't know if that is worth almost $100 / year.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Sugar: The Bitter Truth or Why Sugar is Poison

In 2009 Dr. Lustig, a Professor of Pediatrics at UCSF, taped and published a video title Sugar: The Bitter Truth to YouTube. I recently saw it and it's made me think. The point Dr. Lustig tries to get across is that Sugar, specifically Sucrose and Fructose (including High Fructose Corn Syrup), is poisonous.

The video is worth watching, perhaps several times considering the dense amount of information and the depth at which Dr. Lustig goes to prove his point. The downside is the video is about an hour and a half long.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

GTAC 2011 and STARWEST 2011

The two big Software Testing events of the year, GTAC or the Google Test Automation Conference, and STARWEST are both being held in October of this year. Big month for software testers!

According to the Google Testing Blog GTAC 2011 will be held in Mountain View, CA during the week of October 25th. STARWEST 2011 will be held in Anaheim, CA during the week of October 2nd.

The real question is how do I get my company to pay for both? Hopefully GTAC is reasonable inexpensive.