Latest Posts

Do We Still Need Mobile Apps?

Between around 2009 and 2019, it seemed like every business, every web site, every university, etc, had a mobile app on both the Android and iOS app stores.  If you didn't have a mobile app, you weren't cool, plain and simple. You were behind the times. 

But these days, with so many junk apps out there, and with the mobile web being easier than ever to develop, do we really still need mobile apps at all?

Lightsail: Amazon AWS, Made Simple

When shopping for server space, especially for a client, you need the name recognition and trust of a company like Amazon.  But Amazon AWS can be a daunting ecosystem to navigate, especially for those that just need the basics:  a server and a database.

That's where Amazon Lightsail comes in.  Still hosted on the framework of Amazon AWS, the UI for setting up a new server, database, adding storage, etc, is greatly simplified and much easier to manage, and while still costing a similar rate as other VPS vendors.

Long Live LibreOffice!

I've been using OpenOffice for years-- it's a free (mostly compatible) alternative to Microsoft Office.  With no license fee to pay, it's a simple solution when setting up a new computer for a friend who needs an occasional word processor, powerpoint creator, etc.

But I recently have jumped ship on OpenOffice, and switched to an even better (and still free) office suite:  LibreOffice.

Silk Icon Set Made Easy

If you are anything like me, you find yourself using the Silk icon set (from famfamfam) all the time.  The icons are very smooth and modern-- in fact, you will find a few on this site.

But, they are often difficult to pick what you want, because you have to load the index in one screen, then find the file you want in the zip file.

SSH Key Authentication in Eclipse

I love Aptana as a PHP IDE which lets me edit remote files, through an SSH/SFTP connection.  However, at the time of this writing, it does not support every kind of SSH exchange algorithm.  When it hits a snag, the exact error message it gives is "No suitable key exchange algorithm could be agreed."  I found this was the case on Acquia servers.

While this can be fixed at the server level, if you are working for a client who does not have access at that level (For example, on an Acquia server), you just can't use Aptana.

Which is where regular old Eclipse comes back into play. - Great for Small Business Finances

This post isn't really about IT or programming, but I thought it could help some folks out anyway.  I am a freelance developer, and like a lot of freelancers, I need an easy system for keeping track of my finances.  I believe I found that in the free web site

Let me state for the record that I am not paid by Wave, nor am I in any way connected to this company.  All I can say is that in my own experience, it has made keeping track of purchases & invoices a lot easier.

Best Screenshot Software Hands-Down

If you find yourself sending a lot of screenshots to clients or colleagues, I can't recommend enough the program "Greenshot".  It's free and open source, and allows you to very quickly and easily capture just regions of your screen, certain windows, etc.

You can then either save your screenshot directly, or edit it in a basic image editor which lets you draw arrows, rectangles, and even blur regions-- very handy if you are sending sensitive information.