How the Amazon Kindle Will Change Music

So the word if officially out that Amazon will start shipping, on November 29th 2007, their new eBook reader called "Amazon Kindle".  The device is very compelling if you are looking for an eBook reader, here is are just some of the vital statistics: White background, black text "ePaper" screen 10.3 ounces in weight Runs 2 days with Wireless turned on, a week with it off. Recharges complete in 2 hours Blog reader (or at least some blog feeds available) Full Wikipedia access Read Microsoft Word documents and images (JPG, PNG, BMP and GIF) 88,000 books available now, 100 of the 112 New York Times Bestsellers Wireless access to data without the need for WiFi *blink Hold on there, run that last point again for me... Yes, you read correctly you get access to the Amazon data services directly from the device using Sprint's wireless broadband network and without a monthly charge.  How?  Amazon is absorbing the charges, the control the platform, you go to them for data, and simply do it over the Sprint network.  That is absolutely incredible and the single most ground breaking concept within this device.  With a $399 price tag, is definitely a niche market right now, but if you consume 20ish books a year, then you'll make back the money within a year on the savings over "dead tree" versions. But my question to you, dear readers, is that if there was a cell phone company willing to let a company "Pay Per Download" on devices in the field, how is it that Jeff Bezos found them, and not Steve Jobs!  Just imagine if you will an iPod, not an iPhone, with the ability to download new songs literally anywhere, anytime, at a small 25 cent upcharge on the cost of the song for the download.  This could be huge, and I'll bet you money that someone from Apple is already talking with Sprint about this concept right now. The good news for everyone else in the portable music industry is that this is a chink in the armor of Apple.  If someone can jump on this bandwagon fast, and cut a deal for the same services for music, they could vault themselves over the iPod in popularity because it would still be tethered to WiFi spots.  Now, it can't be the " Music Player", it would have to be someone with a name in hardware already, and someone with enough money to make the deal happen fast, and who has a vested financial interest in seeing the iPod tumble.  Is there such a person?  I think so...

Hiring Talented .NET Developers at Sogeti

I'm thrilled to announce that business is so very good at the moment that Sogeti is once again looking to increase the ranks of their Microsoft Practice.  Sogeti has been my employer since August of 2006, and I must say that I've been thrilled with my experience there.  The team that we have in Dallas are some of the brightest folks I know.  Of course, platitudes are not a reason to work for a company, but enjoying what you do is key. In case you are not aware, Sogeti is a division of Capgemini which focuses on regional IT services delivery.  What does that mean?  It means our consultants don't travel (for the most part) and are placed at positions within their home cities.  We have at Sogeti one of the best work/life balance benefit packages I've ever encountered in the industry, here are some details: All full-time employee consultants are salaried, W2 employees.  We are a consultancy, not a contracting body shop.  Rolling off a project with a client results in bench time at the office while sales places you at the next client, not the end of your time at Sogeti. Medical and Dental Insurance paid for the consultant, plus the option of a Health Savings Account which allows you to save money towards any sort of "out of pocket" medical expenses, even over the counter drugs, with pre-tax dollars.  If you don't use the money, it rolls over year to year, and becomes yours to do with as you wish at retirement age. Comp-Time for every billable hour over 40 worked in a week.  We've all had that nasty 60 hour a week project, they for the most part cannot be avoided, but with this plan you would earn 20 hours of Comp-Time per week to use to spend time with your family when work was less crazy.  They reward time with time, not money, and that is key. Three weeks of PTO for the first two years, four weeks after that (it goes up again but I forget when).  Also twice per year you can purchase a week of PTO, meaning you could have as much as 5 weeks of PTO in your first year and that is not factoring in Comp-Time. What sort of folks are we looking for you ask?  .NET Developers of all levels but if you have experience with any of the following technologies that would definitely help: BizTalk Server - We've got the premiere BizTalk practice in the area and would love to welcome more talented developers into the fold. Microsoft Office Sharepoint Server 2007 aka MOSS 2007 - A hot technology at the moment and the emerging enterprise web technology.  If you've work with Sharepoint, drop me a line. So are you interested?  Drop me a line at with your resume attached and I'll get you in touch with the right people to start the process.  Remember, life is to short to do something you don't enjoy completely.

1000 Lines Of Code

Scott Watermasysk, of .Text and Community Server fame, has a post on his new blog which talks about the start of his current project at Telligent called Graffiti.  In it he discusses his opinion that if a first version of your project cannot be accomplished in under 1,000 lines of code, then it probably is being over-engineered from the get go. Key to this premise though is the idea that you re-use pieces produced by others in order to avoid writing your own code.  He discusses a large variety of other libraries which Graffiti uses, or used in the first few releases.  Some have been replaced, some are still used, but the point is something that is discussed in "agile" circles quite a bit and circles around lots of catch phrases like "Release Often", "Keep It Simple", "YAGNI" and the like.  What I particularly like about Scott's example is that it is a stand against "Not Created Here" which is a horrific airborne virus that many corporate IT departments have caught. How many things that you've written code for do you know for a fact have been solved before and you're re-writing simply yo re-write?  Data Access, yup.  ORM, yup. Security, yup. Nearly every problem has been solved before, and using an existing library does not diminish the value of your project in fact it increases it because your "Time to Market" will be much higher. Go read Scott's post, and when your done riddle me this dear reader : What is the biggest piece of code have you personally written that you know you shouldn't have?  Mine is easy, I've re-engineered an entire Rules Engine when BizTalk Server's Rules Engine was available to me.  That was a big piece of code, like 3 developers for 4 months kind-of big.  Live and learn.