September, 2005

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    aus-dotnet mailing list has a new home

    • 7 Comments

    The aus-dotnet mailing list, that wonder from downunder which is helping 1000's of local developers, has moved mail servers. The new mailing list is supported by the good folks at ICO - thanks Ben, you're a champ!

    Dr Pete sent a note out this evening to let the subscribers know about the new system


    From: Peter Stanski
    Sent: Thursday, 8 September 2005 9:14 PM
    To: dotnet@stanski.com
    Subject: [aus-dotnet] The List is FINALLY back online again! The story so far....

    Hi Guys!

    Yes we are live again! So what happened?

    Our previous ISP's systems were no longer able to cope with the levels of emails we generate on their server. Also, apparently we were clogging up their anti-spam systems which impacted on their other customers.
    Having 1000+ members means that every time you send an email out you touch someone's inbox. So each day if we have 30+ posts we're generating 30K+ emails. 

    Basically, we got told that we would have to get off their server onto a more higher end system which was going to cost 10x times more. AND, their new mail platform would not be able to support the mailing list - which was the deal breaker.  Also, the server became unstable over the last 4 weeks which explains why sometimes the mailing list would not deliver emails, and then deliver them all out in one hit causing more bottlenecks in their mail servers. So things started to spiral out of control. 

    In the last few days it got to the point where their system stopped several times and the SMTP service kept stopping as a result. And we got told to get off the platform, so much so that they shut down the mail system before they were supposed to.  I sent out an email a few days ago telling you all that we were moving to a new server, and that it would be seamless.

    As you know this was not the case. The ISP shut down the mail system without telling us about which resulted in the list stopping all together. Had they kept it going, you would have not seen any issues with the list. So we are no longer with them 8-)

    It just so happens that I had been chatting with Ben Sudbry from ICO the a few weeks ago about all things .Net and their hosting platform. Last week when things really hit the fan, I called Ben and we had a chat about their hosting infrastructure supporting locked down lists mailing - ie. can't post to list without being a subscriber. You'd be surprised how much spam we block every day.  AND while I am on the topic, there is someone in Singapore trying to send phishing emails to the list stating that Stanski Consulting wants you to give us your personal details. Please be careful should such email ever make their way onto the list.

    Back to the story, so Ben and I talked about the list and he kindly offered for ICO.com.au to sponsor the mailing list. If you guys need a .Net hosting platform have a chat to them about it. My experience has been excellent and they have promised that if we ever start to need more grunt for the mailing list- they can crank it up for us.

    So we're on the new platform as of now. The DNS MX records are pointing at the correct SMTP mail server and life should be good for all.

    Finally, the list is going strong due to your involvement and I hope that you continue to gain benefit from its usage as a community as a whole.

    Happy Coding!
    Peter Stanski

    [ Currently Playing : The Unloved One - INXS - Stay Young 1979-1982 Disc 2 (03:58) ]

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    Claiming my feed at Feedster

    • 0 Comments

    No Need to Click Here - I'm just claiming my feed at Feedster feedster:6f304594ec28a096ddd2d574e1d58a00

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    How Can I Be A Presenter at TechEd next year ?

    • 8 Comments

    I've been asked recently by some folks that they would like to be able to present at Tech.Ed next year, and who they need to contact.

    My reply went something like this

    Participate in the community.

    • start a blog
    • participate on a mailing list, like the aus-dotnet mailing list
    • go to a user group
    • present at a user group
    • contribute to a community dev project such as DNN
    • do internal presentations at your place of work
    • write articles for magazines
    • get published online
    • write a book

    You do these things and we'll be begging you to present ;)

    Look's very similar to an earlier post of mine - So, you want to be an Evangelist?

    [ Currently Playing : Ty Taylor (08-24-05) - What You Need - - (02:18) ]

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    Upcoming important dates leading up to VS2005 Launch

    • 0 Comments

    Here are some key dates, as we get closer to the launch of Visual Studio 2005 & SQL Server 2005

    31 Oct 2005
    7 Nov 2005
    29 Nov 2005
    28 Nov 2005 - 2 Dec 2006
     VS Live *NEW

    [ Currently Playing : Jordis Unga (07-11-05) - Baba O'Riley - - (01:48) ]

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    ASP.NET Site of the Day : A-League

    • 3 Comments

    Tech.Ed's over, so best to get back to normal activities, as I try and feature an ASP.NET site each day

    Thanks to an email from William Luu, an Aussie .NET Blogger, which alerted me to the fact that the new launched A-LEAGUE has a new web site and it's all ASP.NET, as are all the club sites.

    Hyundai A-League

    The League

    A little over two years ago, the wheels were set in motion for a new national football (or soccer as it was known then) competition to be introduced on to the Australian sporting public, culminating in the launch of the Hyundai A-League. On Friday 26th August, 2005 those wheels will be off and running and the exciting journey will commence. The decision to start afresh will hopefully begin the revitalisation of the game at the domestic level in Australia. There are many facets involved in the staging of a national competition and should be regarded as equally as important as what happens on the field. The League section of the website, is provided to assist football fans with information about the Hyundai A-League in general.

    Cool. Anyone know who developed it?

    [ Currently Playing : Every Planet We Reach Is Dead - Gorillaz - Demon Days (04:53) ]

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    Sensis deploys 400 Tablet PCs

    • 1 Comments

    I spotted this article last night, while I was catching up on my email. Sensis is a leading Australian advertising and search company, owned by Telstra. They are the folks responsible for the White Pages & Yellow Pages, as well as Citysearch, Trading Post and WhereIs, and the recently launched "Search Engine for Australians" which has had some comments on blogs recently.

    But enough of that, this is a terrific story about a large Tablet PC deployment - 400 Tablets PC isn't a small number that's for sure.  I wonder if this make Sensis the largest Tablet PC user in Australia? I also wonder if there are any custom apps that have been developed for this deployment. Anyone know?

    Take one tablet before your visit
    By Adam Turner
    August 30, 2005
    Next

    Thomas Arthur, vertical business general manager at Sensis. Photo: Erin Slattery

    Telstra's online advertising and search engine arm, Sensis, put more than 400 Acer Tablet PCs in the hands of mobile salespeople this year. This allowed the road warriors who flog, among other things, space in the White and Yellow Pages to give customers on-screen proofs of their advertisements and then sign the contract right there and then on-screen.

    A third of the project's multimillion-dollar budget was spent on making representatives comfortable with the technology so the tablets could be a sales tool and not expensive paper weights, says Sensis vertical business general manager, Thomas Arthur.

    Training, scenario playing and interactive DVDs were used during the 15-month project to prepare for the move away from pen and paper. It included a large trial in Mildura. Staff could consult trainers for six weeks after they got their tablets.

    "We even had a competency exam, so at the end of the training we had an expectation that they would be competent in using this tool and if they weren't they went back and did the training again," Mr Arthur says.

    "It was very important that customers weren't being asked to amuse themselves for 10 minutes while sales staff figure out what they're doing."

    Another important consideration was that the technology did not get in the way of the salesmanship.

    "We needed a tool where the contract could be closed in front of the customer," Mr Arthur says.

    "Making sure the Tablet PC is a sales aid rather than just an order-taking process is the single most important thing we have to ensure. It's very easy to take an order, but that's not selling."

    Almost 90 per cent of customers sign electronically - one of Mr Arthur's key performance indicators. Sales staff are also successfully encouraging customers to buy bigger colour advertisements because they can quickly see how they will look.

    Pre-deployment training, followed by detailed analysis of their use, is vital in any large scale tablet or notebook deployment, says Acer national corporate sales manager Frank Ugolini.

    "One thing we push with our customers is not to just implement a new program and walk away, or else all you've done is just given staff a Tablet PC that's a great toy," Mr Ugolini says. "You've got to measure how they're using them, what value they're getting out of that and what the return on investment is. If you don't, it becomes a toy and it doesn't really provide value to the business."

    After considering several lightweight alternatives, Sensis elected to go with Acer's 2.74 kg TravelMate C302 Tablet PC, with a 14.1-inch display, full keyboard and 1.6 GHz processor running WindowsXP Tablet PC Edition.

    "Our view, and the advice we got from our legal people, was that in signing a contract it was very important that we could demonstrate that all relevant terms and conditions were available to the customer when they signed. It's very difficult to do that on screen smaller than 14 inches," Mr Arthur says.

    "Even a 10-inch screen just couldn't show all the terms and conditions and we were looking at a situation where, if we were challenged, somebody could point out that."

    Although the ability to write on the screen with a stylus is a useful annotation tool, a keyboard is still vital when out on the road.

    "The annotation and sketching is great, but there's a lot of data entry and when you're doing that you need a reliable, full-scale keyboard, which you're comfortable using," he says.

    "Even when they're modifying advertisements on screen, the sales reps increasingly use a pen to draw the line and the bubble, but the keyboard to enter the precise text. Why? Because then there's no mistake."

    [ Currently Playing : Talking Bout My Baby - Fatboy Slim - Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars (03:44) ]

  • frankarr - an aussie microsoft blogger

    Aussie .NET Blogger heading to Redmond

    • 1 Comments

    I spotted this post last week from David Kean, in which he announced his new job over at MicrosoftClarke posted a  congratulations last week, and it's my turn now.

    Congratulations on the new role Buddy!

    David was one of my ISV Buddys and a long time member of the Aussie .NET Blogger list. But does this mean the Aussie .NET Blogger list is now less one member?

    [ Currently Playing : Black Betty - Spiderbait - Triple J Hottest 100 Volume 12 Disc 1 (03:26) ]

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