Monthly Archives: August 2008

Adidas marathon series 2008

Last year I competed in the Adidas Frank Duffy 10 mile race and came 487th overall. I’ve been training non-stop since then and last Saturday I did the same race again and came 143rd taking nearly 11 minutes off my time (1:04:44 this year). You can see from the photos below that it wasn’t an easy race to say the least 🙂

Frank Duffy 10 mile 2008

I ran with the guy on the left of the picture for about 3 miles before he lost me. I nearly caught him at the end though.

Frank Duffy 10 mile 2008

A sprint to the finish.

About a month ago I also did the Adidas 5 mile runner challenge and came 123rd (31:21).

Adidas 5 mile 2008

Next year I’ll be setting my sights on the top 100…… Bring on the marathon.

On another note, the proof watermark is there because want €25 for each photo…. OUTRAGEOUS!!!!!

Archive of an SVN changeset

All too often I need to release changes to a staging or live server and I always felt the releases were taking too long.

At Karova we use SVN and I always try and commit any releases in one changeset. I wrote a python script to archive all the files listed in a changeset. It’s been very very useful so far. Simply run the python script in the root of your repos and you will be prompted for the changeset number. The script then archives all the files in that changeset in a zip file named by changeset. You’ll need the svn client in your path for it to work though.


Too long in visual studio?

When do you know when you spend too long in visual studio?

When you finish writing a document in Open Office and find yourself repeatedly ‘Ctrl+Shift+B’ ing. I chuckled out loud when I realised what I’d just done. I think it’s a default muscle reflex now, just ‘Ctrl+S’ is.

Web Application installations with Wix…. Awesome

This week I set off with the goal of making one of our web applications alot easier to deploy. The tools I chose were –

  1. Web Application Installer (WAI)
  2. Wix (Windows Installer XML)
  3. WixEdit

I’d played with all three before but never really got past prototype stage. I’ve spent the last day learning wix and all the elements relevant to me. The Web Application Installer is collection of scripts and a template for different types of web applications. Firstly you use WAI to generate a list of files to install and the use WixEdit to edit that list and many other properties of the wix installation. Once happy with the configuration of the installation WixEdit will generate an msi for installation on your target machine. They truly are an excellent collection of tools. I now have an msi installer that sets up a web site in IIS, sets the ASP.NET version to 2, sets all the required permissions, creates a DB in SQL Server Express (specifying where to save the mdf and ldf files too) and changes the connection string in web.config accordingly. Todays quota of job satisfaction has now been achieved – saving about an hour per install (I’ve to install this app 28 times for different clients so the work was definitely worth while).

One huge pit fall which made me silly amounts of angry was that the SQL script you use to generate the tables and initial data for your database MUST be saved in Unicode (UTF-8). If it’s not then wix won’t be able to read it. I lost 3 hours yesterday with this!!!! as SQL server management studio express by default saves to UCS-2 Big Endian. Very little documentation on this fact so hopefully this post will help a little.

British Gas continue to amaze

Yet again British Gas have been at it. Last December the electricity account for my old house was closed after hours on the phone and email trying to get the account set up first (after two years) so that I could close it. Last week I was on holiday and came back to two letters stating I owed £241 for electricity used form June to December. I then got another letter today threatening legal action. Why on earth did this take 8 months!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.

They didn’t have any forwarding address and found me from my new account in my appartment here which I didn’t think was very fair.

What a crowd of shams. I’m livid here, I thought I was done with all that hassle.

Norway Holiday 2008 – Epic

I’m just back from my, what is turning out to be, annual trip to my Mum’s summer house on the Helgeland islands off the coast of Norway. It’s a long journey involving 2 planes, an overnight ferry and a short car ferry. Well worth it though. Myself and my brother were there on our own for a few days before the rest of the family arrived (9 adults and 3 kids at the end of the trip). I did plenty of fishing, running, cycling, swimming, walking, reading, baby sitting and eating. The summer house is not yet finished it’s renovation so we spent some time helping out getting things order – specifically the sewage system in the cellar which invloved digging up the concrete in the cellar and laying new pipes (a fun job 🙁 ). I took loads of photos which are all online @ – below I’ve chosen a few of the best ones.
norwayjuly2008 An arty photo attempt with my shades and one of the flies that pestered us for most of the mountain trip.
norwayjuly2008 Base camp on the mountain with a lovely river to the left and lakes scattered throughout the peaks of the island’s mountain.

Cooking some of our catch
norwayjuly2008 Very very tasty – especially after a days fishing and hiking.
norwayjuly2008 Mid air pose. The water was freeeeeezing!!!
norwayjuly2008 Some of the farm’s horses roamed along by the shore. Very friendly beasts.
norwayjuly2008 My brother fishing on the shore
norwayjuly2008 My white self up the mountains
norwayjuly2008 In total we caught 94 trout in just over two days up the mountain.
norwayjuly2008 Count them…. 94!!!!
norwayjuly2008 One of the most amazing sunset’s I’ve ever seen.
norwayjuly2008 Me and the sunset and Peter in the background supping down a well deserved brewski.
norwayjuly2008 Ringnes… My Norwegian beer of choice. Only because it’s the cheapest mind you.