It's a late Saturday night in early January and I'm drinking a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, downloading the Windows 7 Beta, catching up on my RSS reader, doing a year-end inventory and analysis and thinking about my goals for the new year. The "new year's goals" thing may seem a bit late, but I've learned not to make any new resolutions until after CodeMash, especially if my goals might include consuming less alcohol or food. Now that CodeMash 2009 is in the books I can move forward.
CodeMash gets bigger and better each year. I always learn at least a few new things. I always meet at least a few new people. I always glean something that changes my perspective - maybe even shakes my foundation. It is a great event. If you've never attended you are doing yourself a disservice; you should check it out next year.
At CodeMash a lot of friends asked me what I have been working on. Surprisingly, I have not written much about it here, but my main squeeze over the past couple of months has been Harvest Reporting Server. I helped push version 2.0 out the door in November, fixed a lot of bugs and pushed out Harvest 2.0 Service Pack 1 a couple of days ago, and have been working on adding a ton of great new features for version 3.0, due out in a few months. I plan on creating a lot more content about Harvest here, mostly about customizing and creating custom reporting packages, but up to this point most of the writing I've been doing about Harvest has been helping to create documentation.
There is a lot of interesting stuff coming from CES this year. One of my more recent interests is Netbooks. It looks like the features keep adding up and the prices keep coming down. I nearly bought one this past week, but I think I'll be patient and let the market settle out a bit more over the next couple of months. One interesting note from CES in relation to netbooks are the solid state drives being announced in the 512GB to 1TB size range. Wow.
Sometimes the underdog wins. I watched the Arizona Cardinals solidly trounce the Carolina Panthers 33-10 after hearning all the network analysts say they didn't have a chance of doing so. I'm not particularly a Cardinals fan, but I'd like to believe that underdog victories bring balance to the world.
I still owe my faithful audience a wrapup to my Windows Home Server series. It is in the pipeline, but I will provide a preview now - I love WHS. It has simplified my life a great deal and it has taken a great weight off my mind, particularly having backups of all of our digital photos. Getting backup strategy in place for every computer and fileshare we have in the house was something I kept meaning to do and kept putting off, though it was continually eating away at the back of my mind - troubling me. I can now cross those things off my list. Done and done.
While I have not been blogging a lot lately, I have been programming, experimenting and playing around. I've got a ton of good material built up for some "Customizing Graffiti" posts. I previewed some of it to Jayme a few days ago and I don't remember his exact quotes, but I'm pretty sure he screamed "That's HOT!" in his best Paris Hilton-like voice. I've blogged a bit about Graffiti CMS in the past and I've probably said it before, but I'll say it again - I LOVE Graffiti. I think it is the Wordpress for ASP.NET web developers - because you can do absolutely anything with it. It really is the biggest hammer in my toolbelt.