• Options for getting to CodeCampOz 2010

    I’m impressed that Mitch got virtually all of the sessions and speakers organised for CodeCampOz 2010 by July and this year the event isn’t until November (20-21st)!

    There’s some good topics being covered on the agenda, but how would I go about getting there now that the “FLC pool” car we had access to at the Uni (back in the old days!) is no longer an option and what would it cost?

    Car hire

    Getting to Wagga Wagga from Adelaide is a good day’s drive, and something I’d really only undertake if there were others to share the trip/driving with. But assuming that was sorted, and you were hiring from the Friday to the Monday (eg. driving there on the Friday, driving back home on the Monday), Hertz list options including a Toyota Corolla Hatch for $158 or a Toyota Camry for $207. Don’t forget to allow for petrol, and of course the cost of 2 days that you won’t be working.

    Flying

    Wagga has a regional airport, but it is only serviced by flights from Sydney and Melbourne. Ideally you’d fly in on the Friday afternoon, and head home on the Sunday night.

    WebJet lists a few options. I’ve listed the cheapest I could find here:

    | Date

    Flight

    Time

    Route

    Cost

    Total Cost
     

    19/11

    QF736

    12:15pm-4:40pm

    (ADL-SYD-WGA)

    $286

    $286
     

    JQ775

    3:20pm-5:05pm

    (ADL-MEL)

    $99

     
     

    ZL3286

    6:35pm-7:40pm

    (MEL-WGA)

    $139

    $238
     

    21/11

    QF223

    5:00pm-10:20pm

    (WGA-SYD-ADL)

    $286

    $286
     

    ZL3281

    4:50pm-6:00pm

    (WGA-MEL)

    $139

     
     

    TT8039

    9:00pm-9:50pm

    (MEL-ADL)

    $74

    $213

    So choosing the Melbourne options would cost $451, via Sydney is $572. But you’d still need transport once you got to Wagga – so either hire a car once you get there, or get a taxi from the airport and hope someone can give you a lift out to the campus.

    Accommodation

    Don’t forget you have to stay somewhere. Last time I stayed at the Central Point Motel – nothing fancy but it did the job. Wotif lists them at $98/night.

    Lunch is normally provided (in the form of Pizza), but allow for breakfast and dinner expenses.

    Non-financial costs

    And all this assumes that my family is willing to let me take off for another weekend not that long after spending a week away at TechEd on the Gold Coast!

    Even attending Adelaide’s own CodeCampSA had a similar expense as far as my family is concerned. That ended up being a two full days that I’m not around to share the load, do family stuff and spend time with my wife and kids. While I love to learn new things and pursue professional development opportunities, when it comes to the crunch family should be the more important of the two – so anything that takes away from time with the family had better be worth it.

  • Another famous person.. Ian Reid

    I was doing some housecleaning in Google Reader and noticed an old RSS feed for Ian Reid (my old boss at UniSA). In checking to see if Ian had an updated blog, I discovered that:

    1. No obvious new blog
    2. but Ian has a new homepage
    3. and Ian is on Wikipedia (cool!)
    4. and he’s been on Wikipedia since 2005
    5. which strangely I don’t think I knew
  • Google App account migration

    I received an email from Google a few weeks ago informing me that soon the @gardiner.net.au accounts hosted in Google Apps will be able to access virtually all of the suite of regular Google Applications (eg. Blogger, Reader etc). About time!

    “Google Apps” is the name of Google’s hosted app service for a specific domain – not to be confused with Google Applications which you can access with just a regular Google account.

    Up until now, Google Apps users were limited to a small subset (Mail, Calendar, Docs, Chat and Sites). This also meant if you wanted to access non-App applictions, you had to have a separate Google account, though it could have the same name as your Google app account.

    This change is a good thing in that now the one account will be used to log in to both the App services as well as the other applications.

    If you have a Google account with the same name as your Google Apps account, the non-Apps account will be renamed so that it is now unique. Any services/applications that were attached to the non-App account will remain with with that account.

    So while all the services that I used to access with my old Google account are still there, they are now attached to the renamed account instead.

    One thing that is helpful in the interim is Google have recently added the ability to switch between multiple accounts (Windows Live IDs have had this for some time), however I’d prefer to have all my services under the same account. Unfortunately there is no automated migration path to transition application settings between accounts.

    The only solution is to manually move settings over. eg. For Reader, export my feeds to an OPML file then import them (which is fine for feeds but doesn’t migrate your “shared items” nor the “people you follow”). For other services like Blogger, Google Groups and Google Code, you need to re-register with the new account.

    All this is a pain for me, but the other tricky part is that I’m not the only person using my domain. Google does tell me that there are other family members who are in a similar situation but for privacy reasons they won’t tell me exactly who or what those users are. I’ll have to wait for them to contact me so I can help them out. At least my domain just has a few users – this is going to be a much larger job for enterprise customers!