So Grooveshark has been around for some time now. You can search for practically any song and you play it full. I wonder how long it’s going to last. Then again JustHearIt is still going strong for some time as well, and it’s still up. Grooveshark has a larger library it seems though. On a different note, they’re both great Flash apps.
I needed a program to convert movie files to iPhone. I found this great tool called FLV to AVI MPEG WMV 3GP MP4 iPod Converter. I found the best settings for an DivX encoded .AVI that was 22 minutes (an episode of The Office) at 176MB was as follows (which surprisingly generated a file that was 175 MB):
So there’s a few ways so far to develop native apps for the iPhone. Let’s count the ways:
1. The Apple Way: These technologies are the native tools that Apple encourages developers to use. They include Objective-C, Cocoa, XCode and Interface Builder. You can find more information at the Apple Developer website.
2. The .NET Way: The Mono project’s version of the .NET framework. You can use C# and the .NET framework to make native apps. Check out MonoTouch for more information.
4. The Adobe Way: In Flash Professional CS5 (not out yet). You can use ActionScript to create Flash applications that will compile natively to the iPhone. Read more about it in Adobe’s FAQ.
The biggest downside is if you’re a Windows user, you’re mostly out of luck. Flash Professional CS5 is the only one so far that lets you develop on a Windows machine. The rest are for MacOS’s.
A few weeks ago, Google released Chrome Frame, which is an IE plugin that can make your IE render a webpage like Google Chrome. After you install it, however, by default it’s only triggered when you have the following meta tag on your webpage:
<meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="chrome=1">
To always have it running so that every page (regardless if the webpage has the meta tag), you will have to make a quick Registry edit.
Here are two handy apps I use when I have to parse XML data.
firstobject XML Editor – This is a great tool that I primary use for formating XML into a more readable format. I just paste it in the editor, hit F8, and it beautifies it. It does more than that, but that’s what I use it the most.
Buba XPath builder – This is a nice tool where you can create an XPath search string and it shows you the results in real time by applying it to your XML data.
These are some of the items I’ve used in my projects. Not all items apply for all projects. Also, various items can happen simultaneously and could be maintained via various methods. Terminology may change depending on your organization.
Project Definition (PD) – Maintained via Microsoft Word
The biggest document of the lot. It includes project goals, target release, deliverables, requirements, use cases, business rules, glossary, and references other project/business documents.
Project Plan – Maintained via Microsoft Project
Timeline of the entire project. It includes, planning, approval, development, testing, deployment. The project manager receives the project plan from the vendor and may work with it as-is or may need to work together with the vendor to establish points.
Content Dictionary (CD) – Maintained via Microsoft Word
Content that will be on the user interface of applications / products. Two purposes:
- It is formatted using a very primitive wire-frame layout. The wire-frame represents describes to the designer the priority of text and where on the page it should be. The design team then improves on the wire-frames to include usability then turn it into mock-ups of actual web pages.
- Text is prepared in this document so it can easily be translated into multiple languages. This document is submitted to the translator and we get a document, with this same layout, but content translated.
Release Management (RM) – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Visio
A plan that lays out how the project is to be rolled out / released.
Quality Assurance – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Visio
A plan that lays out the strategy for quality assurance.
Site Map – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Visio
Visual layout representing new tree structure of pages that will be added to our current one.
Contractual Framework (CF) – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Adobe Acrobat Professional
Legalities of the contract, relationship, payment, and deliverables. It must be agreed by the vendor before taking on any work.
Request for Proposal – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Adobe Acrobat Professional
A quick summary that explains the details requirements of the project. Brief, around 10 pages. This is the only document that the vendor can possess without an NDA. Word / PDF
Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Adobe Acrobat Professional
A document signed by the company and the vendor that states what shall remain confidential between both parties and as well as legality behind any actions taken. Word / PDF
Vendors – Maintained via Microsoft Word / Excel
Various vendors selected based on clientele, experience (e-commerce, financial, and creative experience), portfolio, web site look-and-feel, professionalism, location, and development & management methods, size.
The software project manager will need to keep track of emails, proposals, estimates, quotes, contact information, status, etc.
Business Documents – Maintained via Microsoft Word
A collection of other documents that are part of the project in which the vendor shall use to familiarize themselves on other parts of the company – business process for departments, other projects, policies, etc.
In the past as a project manager, I came across various tools to management the never-ending lists of requirements. The following tools specialize in different key areas:
- Requirements Gathering
- Protopying of Products
- Use Case Modeling
- Managing Actors & Resources
- Collaborative Work Among Stakeholders
While Microsoft Project is best for timelines and allotting resources, its a major hassle getting it fine-grained as some of these tools. Also, it does not possess some of these major functions.
I bring this up because with all the major stakeholders and moving pieces in the auctions project, and because of the unique way that it has to be project-managed, we need more order in managing various resources and artifacts.
The tools are as follows:
Check out the WikiPage for “Comparison of project management software” for a more comprehensive list of software.
1. Select External Tools
2. Enter the following in the textboxes:
Make sure the path to your project doesn’t have spaces! (bug with Eclipse)
3. Set the hotkey to F5 so it runs the external tool: