Welcome to my blog !

A blog devoted to all things geeky, including PHP, Web Development, Photography, Design, Gadgets and Gizmos.

June 23 2008

Canon 450D Arrives!

My new Canon 450D camera finally arrived.  I’ve spent about an hour playig with it, taking some snaps around the house and the local park.  So far VERY impressed, the image quality is great. 12 Megapixels w00t.

Canon 450D

and speaking of photography, this article is pretty sweet.  How to avoid camera shake..

June 22 2008

Zend VS Cake

I’ve been using the Zend Framework for PHP for a while, I’ve only done 3-4 projects using it, and only 1 using the MVC component of Zend 1.5.  The code is very solid, PHP 5 and easy to use.  However, I had to take a look at Cake for a potential job coming up soon.  Coded up a quick blog app based on the code demonstrations on the Cake site.  Impressions of the source code (mishmash of PHP4 with PHP5 compliance checks) was not good.

Compared to Zend, the codebase doesn’t look like it would be easy to jump into should I need to make any  modifications to it.  On the other hand its FAST to develop with.  Zend is way more hands on, having to extend a lot of classes for basic stuff (pagination, database acl etc) while cake 1.2 gives you those elements for free as well as scaffolding, simple configuration, simple authentication.  Cake is just a lot simpler and faster all round, I might get a couple of things done in Cake and see if I am feeling inclined to go back to Zend.

June 18 2008

Apple Store Opens in Australia

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Well its finally here!  The brand new apple store opened today in George Street, Sydney.  I’m a huge Apple fan since getting my macbook pro in June of last year.  I think my first mac purchase was an ipod so I’m not what you would call a long time user.

I bought an ipod touch earlier this year (32gb) and love the little beast.  Its a blast to use, great interface and hopefully some great new apps come July 11.  My next purchase will probably be a mac pro or a 24″ imac.

Apple store sydney

June 18 2008

Why I like YUI

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I usually use JQuery for javascript work, the shortcuts for dom manipulation, XPath and the plethora of plugins are fantastic.  But recently I had to find a nice calendar for a booking application.  Something that I could easily populate with booked dates, have date ranges, different date renderers (colours/formatting on the date boxes).

I gave YUI calendar a try and if did it all out of the box.  They have created it in a way that makes it highly extensible and easy to use.  You can also plug in AJAX features relatively easily (which I didn’t do for my project but would be ideal for a booking/date management system).

Its also a great project to support because its open source and the developers at Yahoo have been really been giving some great tools to the development community over the last few years.

Also YUI has GREAT documentation.  Check it out..

June 17 2008

Geotagging with Google Maps and Flickr

This is the quick way to geotag photos for those who don’t have the cash to buy a GPS at the moment.  Simply take your photo, perhaps jotting down a street name (if your memory isn’t too good), then cruise over to Google Maps.

In Google Maps, navigate to the location where you took the photo. Zoom in as much as possible. Click on the ‘link to this page’ link on the right hand side of the page.

You will be presented with a rather long url.  You need to copy the section after ‘&ll’. The ll stands for Latitude and Longitude.

Example Url:

http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=san+francisco&ie=UTF8&ll=37.823938,-122.370336&spn=0.003483,0.010396&z=17

Now when you add your photo to flickr include the tags:

geo:lat=37.823938
geo:long=-122.370336

June 17 2008

Firefox Download Button

If you are like me, you download things off the internet and have to alt tab to see firefox’s download menu to open the item.  On a mac its a little easier with stacks available to quickly open the item from the downloads folder.

I decided to add a download button to FF3, which has turned out to be pretty handy.  Just right click on the top menu in firefox and select ‘customize’.

Then select the download button.  I added it next to the back button, so its always very easy to open up recent downloads!

June 17 2008

Firefox 3 release day!

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Firefox 3 was includes a LOT of new features including a smarter bookmark search, re-worked options sections, nicer standard search, nicer appearance and faster performance.  The browser is BLAZINGLY fast, and best of all is a free download.

http://www.getfirefox.com to download it today.  They are also going for a guiness world record for number of downloads in a day so grab it today and help them get the record.