Farewell RJ

Monday, 21 April 2008

I also found out on Friday that RJ has accepted a position at Alcidion. I hope they realise they're getting some quality talent.

Amongst other things, I believe they're happy to accept the fish tank too!

Farewell Murray, Warren, Online Services and FLC-IT

Monday, 21 April 2008

Friday was a day of goodbyes. First off at City West campus was an official farewell for Murray Barr, who has been at UniSA (and it's predecessors) for over 30 years.

Warren Willsmore was also acknowledged as he is leaving to work with a paraplegic foundation (Warren, sorry I can't remember the proper name).

I've worked with both of these guys, and they will be greatly missed.

Following that, "Antidisestablishmentarianism" Drinks were held at the Garage Bar. This was a chance to catch up with friends and colleagues and mark the end of the Online Services and FLC-IT teams.

As was said on the night "all our applications and systems have been running well this year, so beware of anyone trying to cast blame on us if things suddenly go funny from now on".

Remember one of my favourite phrases - "Not a culture of blame!"

School holiday outings

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

It's School Holidays in South Australia, and that just happens to coincide with me still being on leave. Yesterday, seeing as the car was booked in for a service, I suggested we might all head into the city to see the sights. It was going to be a lovely fine day too.

After dropping off the car, we caught the train into the city, which the kids enjoyed (especially going through the tunnels).

A note for the future: the museum doesn't open until 10am, and there's not a lot else open before then! Some pre-packed morning tea saved the day however.

Once it opened, the museum was good. The kids enjoyed looking at the animal displays, and they are still talking about the giant squid.

There's also a train display in Rundle Mall, including a free Thomas train ride, which was a bit of a hit.

We had a bit of time to kill before lunch so I crazily suggested we have a look through Toys R Us while telling the kids we weren't going to buy anything. Amazingly, the kids were happy to browse, but didn't kick up a fuss when we left without any new acquisitions.

Time for lunch (hotdogs and donuts) then a walk back to the station to catch the next train home.

This is where things could have gone horribly wrong. A combination of pregnant wife and two tired kids plus the fact that because the car was still being serviced, we had to catch a bus home, but that meant a 1.5km walk home from the bus stop. You would think this is a recipe for disaster, except for the fact that there just happens to be a park with a playground half-way.

So after a short stop to recharge batteries/try out the slides and swings, we made it home in one piece.

The whole day was a really enjoyable, and we all a great time. Not every family outing is like this, but it is nice to have a good one every now and again!

ASP.NET and ADO.NET 3.5 Beta Exams

Friday, 11 April 2008

In the latest MCP newsletter, it mentioned that new .NET 3.5 exams are on their way. Curious to know whether there were any beta exams available, I did a quick search and found Gerry O'Brien's blog. That looks like a good one to stay subscribed to.

The good news is I've managed to book both 70-562 (Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5, ASP.NET Application Development) and 70-561 (Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5, ADO.NET Application Development) exams. The bad news is that I think I've taken up the last two slots for these left in Adelaide.

The bad news is that as examination is done by Prometric there are only two exam centres listed for Adelaide - Excom and Dimension Data. The exams are only available until 4th May, but when I was scheduling mine, it only listed Excom as having two free days left. Thanks to me, those days are probably taken now.

I'd also love to know why Prometric doesn't allow filtering the test site list by State. I might fire off an email to them to ask about that.

Adelaide International Cello Festival

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

I'm sure this will be of interest to all you .NET programmers - have you heard about the 2008 Adelaide International Cello Festival?

The main programme runs from Friday 11th - Sunday 20th April.

This is totally out of my league, but I might see if I can go and catch one or two things. Nothing like seeing experts in their field to inspire you.