How connected are you?

As I sat here in the hospital today, I was able to use my Sidekick to check email, chat live with folks on AOL Instant Messenger, and even read blogs.  It then occurred to me that I am a very ‘connected’ person.  Wherever there is GPRS signal, I have access to pretty much everything as well as I do by my desk.  I remember that it wasn’t so long ago that all of my family didn’t even have cell phones, now I can’t get away from data.

I actually think it’s a pretty good thing for the most part.  How about you?

Also, for an update, Claire is doing much better.  All of the tests that have come back so far have been negative, as has the chest x-ray.  Her temp has slowly subsided too, and that’s good, because if she would have gone over 101 again, they would have done a spinal tap…  That’s not something any of us wanted to see.   Hopefully tomorrow morning the doctor will see her and let her go home.  We can only hope.  

Helplessness

There’s nothing that makes you feel as helpless as a parent as seeing your children suffering and not being able to do anything about it.  This morning, my daughter Claire (who is one day shy of one month old) woke up with 101.8 fever.   Not a big deal in older kids, but really troubling for someone as young as Claire.   So we rushed her to Quick Care (which should  be labelled Excruciatingly Slow Care) and they decided to admit her to the hospital.

So here I sit in the hospital worried sick about my child.  And there’s absolutely nothing I can do as a parent to fix it.  And Claire can’t tell us what hurts, she just cries a mournful cry.  Not a fun day.

Upgrading to Domino 6.5 – Went off (almost) without a hitch…

I have a Domino environment that consists of three Domino servers and a Domino/Sametime server.  This past weekend we upgraded all the servers from Domino 5.0.12 to 6.5.  Left Sametime at 5.0.12 because I wasn’t convinced that upgrading it would work.  So I held off.  Everything went very well, except I totally forgot about one gotcha that took me awhile to fix later.

Basically one server was set up to use IIS as its HTTP stack.  Well, 6.X uses a WAS Plugin to take care of it instead.  So, just doing the upgrade broke access to .NSF’s via a browser.  Ugh, totally forgot about checking on that and it’s NOT listed as something to look for in the upgrade red and yellow books.  Anyway, I looked through the redbook and followed directions, and GASP, it didn’t work.  Granted, it was a redbook that I got last Lotusphere, so it was a little out of date.

Anyway, I headed to notes.net (it will ALWAYS be Notes.net to me) and started searching.  Looks like I wasn’t the only one perplexed.  The documentation in the redbook WAS actually wrong.  After searching a while, I found the proper syntax and finally got everything up and running.  Now this isn’t a trivial task.  You need to copy the websphere plugin files to directories you first have to create on the server.  You also need to edit the registry and add some info.  You then need to set up an XML config file correctly, and THEN you need to add the proper virtual directories and ISAPI filters to IIS.  Whew… what a lot of work to use a sucky web server.

Anyway, I wanted to share this info for anyone getting ready to upgrade.  Make sure you have the right info before you go in to the IIS configs.  It will save you a ton of time.

Chicago Notes User Group – Granite

Just got back from my user group meeting in downtown Chicago.  Granite is a group of tech professionals that work with Lotus and IBM technologies.  It’s a user group that meets once every other month and gets speakers from all over the country.  We’ve had in countless vendors as well as such luminaries as Ed Brill.  If you are a Notes professional in the Chicagoland area, you really owe it to yourself to come on down and become a member.  It’s great networking, you get a ton of information, and you can help your peers solve their Domino quandaries.  Web developers, Notes Developers, Websphere geeks, Workplace junkies and Admins all welcome!

Also as of today, yours truly has joined the Granite Board of Directors.  I’m the Technical Director which means I’m the one that will be keeping the Quickplace up to date.  It’s fairly ugly aesthetically at this point, so I’ll see what I can do there.  I’ll also see if I can update the logo to be a little more, shall we say, modern.  I’m really looking forward to giving a little back to the Granite community.

Connected Photographer

Just wanted to let everyone know that there is a new digital photography publication out there. It’s called Connected Photographer and is from ZATZ Publishing. These are the same folks that bring you DominoPower, WebSpherePower and more. Be looking out for articles from yours truly as well. I’ve written for DominoPower before and I’ve already finished one article for Connected Photographer. Feels good to get back in the saddle again.

What I’m thankful for…

Here in the States we have a holiday we call Thanksgiving.  It’s a time to reflect on our lives and figure out what we’re all thankful for.  In addition it’s a food and football holiday.  Eat lots of turkey and stuffing, watch American football.  All in all, a nice relaxing holiday, and the start to the holiday season.  Every year on my blog, I’m going to list what I’m thankful for.

First and foremost, I’m thankful for my family.  I have a wonderful wife who’s my soulmate and best friend.  This world is so much better with her in it.   Secondly, my daughters.  Two year old Kali, and two week old Claire.  I’m so proud and thrilled to be a Dad, especially for both these little girls. I’m also thankful for being gainfully employed.  This is a bad economy, and to have such a good job throughout these times is a true blessing.  It allows me the opportunity to support my family and be a geek.  I’m also thankful for this community.  I know it sounds corny, but I appreciate you all in Domino-land, and I’m thankful that we have a good circle of friends and acquaintances to support us and share in our highs and lows.

That’s it, no tech news, no Domino rants, no photography news.  Just thanks.  It’s something we should all do this holiday season.

Domino Community Blogging Site

Well Ed had a really good idea.  It was born of the fact that many blogs cease to exist over time, and to find good Domino info, you have to search various blogs that may or may not be updated regularly.  As such, he thought that a community site that works like Kiro5hin.org might work well.  I think this is a great idea and to me would be kinda like SlashDot in a way as well.  You take a bunch of different folks with posting rights and give them the ability to update one site that everyone can go to for the latest in Lotus/IBM Community postings.

While I think this is a great idea and I would LOVE to contribute, I really hope that many of the personal bloggers out there keep their sites going in spite of this.  The reason I blog is that I have more to talk about than just Lotus stuff.  Gadgets, Digital Photography, Macromedia development, family and more are all things I want to share.  I read guys like Volker for his wide range of tech ideals, John Head for gaming info, jonvon for his interesting chat logs, Duff for his book reviews, Carl for all things IM… and so many more.  I love what I read and I really feel part of a community of like-minded folks.  I think this is what makes blogging great, and I hope we don’t lose something like that…

Partnerships and Software

First, thanks for all the well wishes folks.  Life has been good.  My daughter is doing great and we’re getting a LITTLE more sleep now.  Anyway, it’s been a week really devoid of tech for me.  It’s kinda been like tech rehab for me!  But, recently I’ve been working on something that makes me wonder about some things about PartnerWorld for Software at Lotus.

You see, in addition to working as the Manager of Groupware Services for a global telecom company, I have my own side business.  I’m sure many of you do as well.  Basically I’m a consultant that helps with internet technologies for small businesses.  I don’t do a lot of work, but it’s nice for the extra money and experience each year.

Well a couple of weeks ago a got an email to see if I wanted to become a Microsoft partner.  I know what you’re thinking.  Why would I consider becoming a Microsoft partner?  Well, the answer simply is that I think Microsoft makes some good software, and when I’m consulting I deal with MS software all the time.  Granted, I hate some MS Software such as Exchange, or their messy HTML conversion, but for the most part, MS is a good company if you ignore their FUD.

That being said, there was another reason to become a partner.  The software package.  What I’m speaking of is a package of software including licenses for most all of the latest Windows products.  XP, Office, W2K3 Server, the whole lot.  Most of these included 10 CAL’s as well.  The software is for internal use only to run your business and demo products.  The cost, $299.  Yes, three hundred dollars.

After seeing this, I started to wonder about PartnerWorld for Software.  That subscription is $2000, and doesn’t seem to cover as much other than quick access to the software.  I would think that IBM would be able to match those prices if not do it cheaper.  Hell, I’d love to be able to partner as a very small business without the 2K outlay.  All I know is that what Microsoft is doing is going to work.  I’m going to see a lot of the MS products installed at my business soon…

Hello World!

Today I would like to welcome to this world my new daughter Clarissa “Claire” Iris Roling.  She was born at 12:10 pm today and weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces and was 19 inches long.  Mom, Baby, Big Sister and Dad are all doing fine.  And for those inquiring minds, YES, Iris is what you think it is :-)

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