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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

VB.NET System.Threading.ReadWriteLock

First of all, download the sample code (VS 2008 SP1). This code will attempt to read and write to the same subject (collection) on different threads simultaneously.

Refer to '.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS' as core reference.

The name ReadWriteLock is misleading. It may cause you to think there are two locks; in reality there is a single lock that restricts both reading and writing.

A ReaderWriterLock allows multiple threads to read data at the same time. The only restriction is that a thread cannot modify the data while someone is reading it. In order words, a write lock is to ensure that no threads are reading data while it is being updated.

Therefore, it is wrong to use two different ReadWriteLock instances for reading and writing of the same subject.

But what if you first acquired read and before releasing it, you need to write ? (such as FIFO).

--> Make use of 'UpgradeToWriterLock'

But there is a problem, a value can change during the process of 'UpgradeToWriteLock'.

When the calling thread calls UpgradeToWriterLock? ? (step 4), the thread is removed from the list of active readers and placed in the pending writer requests queue (step 5). If a request from a different thread is already in the pending writer requests queue, it will be allowed to gain a write lock before the thread that requested the upgrade. The reason is the write lock requests are serviced in the order they are received, without any sort of priority associated with them. --> Pg 170 (.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS)

Why not just acquire the write lock while holding the read lock? --> Deadlock.

The problem is AcquireWriteLock will not return until it has successfully acquired a write lock and a write lock will not be granted until all read locks are released. Since the current thread has a read lock, it will never be able to acquire a write lock. This is a form of deadlock. It is unusual in that only one thread is required to form this deadlock. --> Pg 172. (.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS)

And it is not recommended to release the readlock before requesting the writelock because it will potentially result in race condition. Refer to the illustration below.

There is also 'DowngradeFromWriterLock'.

There is no possibility of change between the time DowngradeFromWriterLock? ? is called and the read lock is granted because when moving from a writer to a reader there is no chance that some other thread is already a reader, or can become one.This is not true when moving from a reader to a writer. In order to handle possible race conditions, UpgradeToWriterLock? ? uses the writer request queue.

--> Pg. 172 (.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS)

If a thread goes from being a reader to a writer and back to a reader, and stays in that state for an extended period of time, other threads will not be able to acquire a write lock. In general, locks should not be held the vast majority of the time, and only acquired when needed. The general rule of acquiring late and releasing early applies. Pg -->177 (.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS)

To solve the problem of "a value can change during the process of 'UpgradeToWriteLock'" mentioned earlier,
  1. If you need to do FIFO, make use of a system.collections.queue
  2. Alternatively, you can make use of 'WriterSeqNum' and 'AnyWritersSince' to find out if since your previous read there has been other writing done. Refer to Pg. 177(.NET Multithreading ALAN L. DENNIS)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Tributes to Yasmin Ahmad

Although this blog focuses on Malaysia ICT stuffs, but I want to pay my tributes to the late Yasmin Ahmad.

She deserves a place in this blog and I admire her contributions towards upholding creativity and her entrepreneur spirit.

My favorite piece of her artworks is of course SEPET; a truly Malaysian movie and a masterpiece. SEPET reminds me that all Malaysian somehow come from the same background, that we are not so much different from each other. Like it or not, we eat the same food, see the same movies, listen the same music, speak the same languages and above all, we think the same thought; the Malaysian humble (contrasting the American dream).

SEPET reminds us that we are humble and we are proud of ourselves and we are happy in our own ways.

I own an original copy of SEPET ok....

Thank you Yasmin for SEPET.

Above all, I must say, thanks for living our dreams.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

YouPlayYouWin - Live Interactive TV Game Show

Check out YouPlayYouWin; live interactive TV Game Show.

In short, it is a show that will be published on TV8 very Sunday at 12:45am beginning from 2nd August 2009 on 8TV which it will challenge viewers to gaming competition.

Keen gamers will have to be prepared all the time by mastering all the games in order to compete with others in an impromptu basis. Winners will walk away with lucrative prices such as Apple iPhone and etc. Check out all the prices here.

Check out the games listing available for play.

To participate, you have to watch the show. The host will first announce the mobile game to be played and the prizes up for grabs. To participate, you need to send SMS message to a SMS shortcode number to register yourself and download the mobile game. Then, you need to play the game and submit your high score into the show, using GPRS, EDGE or 3G data service from your mobile service provider. Please ensure you have activated these settings with your service provider.

Top 10 high scores shall be displayed on the TV show. Each player can upload their score as many times as they want. In the end of the show, the top scores shall win the cash and prizes of the competitions.

For more details, please check out here.

Malaysian Software Testing Board (MSTB)

Malaysian Software Testing Board (MSTB) is a voluntary and non-profit organization that represents the national industry interests and promotes the broad profession of software testing.

It is championing software testing certifications.
  • Certified Tester Foundation Level (CTFL)
  • Certified Tester Advanced Level (CTAL)
  • Certified Tester Expert Level (CTEL)
The root of such certifications comes from International Software Testing Qualifications Board (ISTQB)

This is interesting to me in a few ways:
  1. These certifications may help to provide more income opportunities for ICT professionals
  2. In the future, colleges and universities will be outsourcing software testing curriculum modules to organizations such as MSTB and ISTQB because why reinventing the wheel ? If such movements are successful, it will create a precedence which educations can be outsourced as well.
  3. As what is envisioned by MSTB, Malaysia can establish a software development hub which focuses on software testing.
If you wanted to go for the exams, you can check out the details here.

MSTB has even created study materials (based on the syllabus of ISTQB) for people and it is free for download.

For instance, you can download the the Certified Tester Foundation Level (CTFL) study material here which consists of suggested answers according to the syllabus from ISTQB as researched by MSTB. And the exam fee (which is conducted in Malaysia) is RM 525.

Training providers whose course material follows this syllabus may be accredited by a national board recognized by ISTQB.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Google Launches Moon in Google Earth

Forty years ago today, on July 20, 1969, the world watched as the crew of Apollo 11 took the first human steps on the surface of the Moon. In celebration of this historic occasion, Google is launching Moon in Google Earth, an interactive 3D atlas of the Moon, viewable with Google Earth 5.0.

Site for media can be viewed here including videos: https://sites.google.com/a/pressatgoogle.com/mooningoogleearth/



To experience Moon in Google Earth, open Google Earth 5.0 and switch modes from 'Earth' to 'Moon' on the top toolbar. Google Earth 5.0 can be downloaded at http://earth.google.com/moon.





For more information, have a look at our blog posts on the Official Google Blog http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/07/explore-moon-in-google-earth.html and the Google Lat Long blog http://google-latlong.blogspot.com/2009/07/fly-yourself-to-moon.html.

Juniper Networks and IBM Expand Relationship with OEM Agreement to Expand the Economics of Networking

Juniper Networks announced that they are entering into an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) agreement that will enable IBM to provide Juniper's Ethernet networking products and support within IBM's data center portfolio of products, to provide customers with a best-in-class networking solution and accelerate both companies' shared vision of advancing the economics of networking and the data center by reducing costs, improving services and managing risk.

The OEM agreement allows IBM System & Technology Group (STG) to brand, label and sell select Juniper EX Series Ethernet switches and MX Series Ethernet Services routers. With the EX and MX Series, customers can achieve greater operational simplicity, agility and efficiency for accelerating the deployment of new applications and services. Juniper's EX and MX Series products are designed to advance IT initiatives for data center consolidation, server virtualization and sustainable IT. The combined product offering can significantly reduce network complexity and total cost of ownership by up to 61 percent in capital expenditures, up to 46 percent in power, up to 46 percent in cooling and up to 33 percent in rack space in the data center.

Today's data centers require higher performance and less complex networks as an essential element of their evolution. While there are extreme cost pressures on IT budgets, the demand on data centers only increases with exploding data volumes, demand for new services, speed and security, and always-on reliability. In addition, cloud computing will further drive the need for massive scale, efficiency and elasticity from networks and data center architectures. The broadened IBM and Juniper relationship is further evidence of the growing importance of the high-performance network in the progression of data centers toward cloud computing or cloud-like infrastructures. Both companies agree that a high-performance network is vital to the backbone for both the data center (enabling service production) and the global network (enabling service delivery).

Check out details.

Adobe Releases Flash Platform Media and Text Frameworks as Open Source

Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced two new Adobe® Flash® Platform open source initiatives for developers, media companies and publishers. Open Source Media Framework (OSMF), part of the project previously code named Strobe, enables developers to quickly and easily build more robust, feature-rich media players optimized for the Adobe Flash Platform. The Text Layout Framework (TLF) will help developers bring sophisticated typography capabilities to Web applications. Both OSMF and TLF are now freely available as open source software, helping content owners extend their online media efforts as they look to create new business opportunities and monetization strategies for publishing on the Web.

Akamai and Adobe are collaborating on the Open Video Player initiative, and the release of OSMF technologies. The goal is to ensure a consistent framework for media player development that enables developers, publishers, content owners, corporations and others to more quickly and easily build new video players that create and sustain profitable new business models. By providing all the components for media player development, the combined efforts will help strengthen the industry shift towards open standards.

Check out details.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Malaysia ICT Jobs 2009 #4

Responsibilities:

Key knowledge in web application development (PHP, MSSQL or MYSQL), web design, web server(including SQL server) setup/maintenance.
  • Build CMS (modx, joomla, wordpress) and E-commerce (OScommerce, Magento)
  • Able to convert PSD to html
Requirements:
  • Proficient in web programming using PHP, javascript, MySQL & LINUX
  • Applicants must be willing to work in Puchong (opposite IOI Mall) area.
  • Applicants should be Malaysian citizens.
Benefits:

Strategic working location at Puchong (opposite IOI Mall) area.

5-day work week scheme.

Submit your enquiries and Resume/CV to: job@brandyoudesign.com

Part-Timers/Freelancers are able to work from home, of course under certain conditions. And when you apply for the position, please state the type of employment (part-time/freelance).

SocialText Microblogging Appliance

Image representing Socialtext as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase

Twitter is hot right ? But I haven't used it yet.

Besides being able to keep people busy by constantly checking out on your latest status, I have long ago thought about the possibility of using Twitter or micro-blogging services to help with managing some software development collaboration challenges such as issues management, new feature requests and etc. It is possible.

SocialText Microblogging Appliance is just about having the same kind of idea. It is a Microblogging software for private usage.

The main thing of using SocialText over other microblogging services is for information security where confidentiality is of a high concern.

It also offers APIs for integration with other software as well as specialized hardware. It is created for corporate.

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Devexpress XtraReports Sub Grouping

Devexpres Xtrareport suite is developed using .NET, that is why you can use C#,VB, ASPX as the scripting basis.

How to do create sub grouping (a group under a group) ?

Refer to the official tutorial.

Look under the section of 'Grouping Data'. Refer to the following breadcrumb.

XtraReports Home > Concepts > Creating Reports > Data Representation > Grouping Data

'Sub Grouping' is also known as 'Nested Grouping'.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The best open source software to choose from (2009) ?

If you are paying, you will go for brand. That is because a brand will help you to decide, that is the capitalist world's rule.

But if you are not paying, how do you make decision ?

For me, it should be:
  • The most number of contributors
  • The most number of downloads
  • Frequent updates
Now there is a good chance for you to figure out via the SourceForge community choice award 09.

Nevertheless, the software which I really like to try out are:
And of course, there are those so-called all-time popular like:
  • Firebird - Database
  • Symphony - PHP Framework
  • Pentaho - Business Intelligence
  • TortoiseSVN - Source code management
  • etc
Something to look into for those people looking to cut cost on software and for developers who wanted to find out how far people have achieved ?

By the way, currently I am using one of them, which is Twiki (to manage my information). Current version is not very user friendly, but it helps me a lot and it is quite light weighted and easy transferable between machines.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Adobe ColdFusion 9 and ColdFusion Builder Public Betas Now Available

Adobe Systems announced the public betas of Adobe® ColdFusion® 9 and ColdFusion® Builder® software. Cold Fusion 9, a powerful development technology for building dynamic Web sites and Internet applications, increases developer productivity, integrates with complex enterprise environments and delivers rich and interactive experiences for users. ColdFusion Builder is a new Eclipse based integrated development environment (IDE) used for rapidly developing ColdFusion applications.

Check out full details.

Juniper Networks Announces Industry’s Only Adaptive Threat Management Solutions to Deliver Intelligent Security and Performance Across the Distributed

Juniper Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: JNPR), the leader in high-performance networking, today announced the industry’s only open solution set to deliver intelligent security and performance across all enterprise locations.

Check out details.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Malaysia ICT Jobs 2009 #3

ABAP Developer

Responsibilities:

Provide day-to-day support and maintenance for existing ABAP reporting programs, forms and interfaces.

Analyze user requirements to create detailed program design specifications working within established implementation methodologies.

Perform new application development which includes analysis of requirements, ABAP design and creation, unit and integration testing, and deployment.

Create clear, concise technical documentation to accompany all application development.

Analyze functional specifications, write, modify, and test ABAP code for Reports, Interfaces, Conversions, Enhancements and Forms.

Requirements

Minimum 2-3 years SAP ABAP programming experience.

Degree or technical training required. (i.e. Computer Science, Business, Engineering etc.).

Experience working on SAP ECC5.0 environment and above – specifically with SAP FI/CO, SD, MM and HR modules.
Strong technical skills in the following areas:

  • BAPIs and BDC scripts SAPscript and SMART Forms
  • User-Exits and Customer Enhancements (Customer Functions and BADIs)
  • Performance tuning
  • ALE/IDoc Interface Development
  • Dialog programming
  • ABAP Objects, Workflow
  • List, Interactive and ALV reporting,
  • Experience analyzing production problems (logs, dumps, etc.)
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills


E-mail your application / resume to team@it-sideways.com or to jesseychan@idealseed.com / chan_jessey@yahoo.com or you may also call Ms.Jessy Chan mobile 012- 420 1756 / 016-521 1756.

Japanese Research and Development Agency Enters New Generation of Networking with Juniper Core Virtualisation Solution

Japan's National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) has achieved a major technological breakthrough by using virtualization to improve the efficiency of its new-generation ultra high-speed test bed research network, JGN2plus, with Juniper's T1600 core routing platform and JCS 1200 control system. Juniper Networks provided NICT with the technology to build virtualized core routers, which can increase the flexibility, efficiency and performance of its network.



National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) is the sole national research institution in Japan in the information and communications field. NICT is striving to advance the fields, by promoting its own R&D centers (especially, "ICT for Safety and Security," "New Generation Networks" and "Universal Communications" fields) and by cooperating with supporting outside parties. NICT has been operating JGN2plus, its super high-speed and high performance test-bed network, since April 2008.

At the 2009 Sapporo Snow Festival, the JGN2plus research and education network was used to distribute live television and data feeds in HD format between the Festival studio and six broadcasting stations nationwide, as well as to home digital TVs, via the Panasonic Center in Tokyo.

Check out details.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Email Interview With Embroi.com

An email interview with Mr. Steven of Embroi.com.

EMBROI.com is a Chinese Embroidery Online Shop. Chinese embroidery is popular for home decoration, as gifts for friends and business dealings.

There are many High-grade and Cheap embroidery on EMBROI.com .Customers can pay online via Paypal or Moneybookers.

1. Embroi.com gives the first impression of being an e-commerce web site focusing on embroidery products, while I am impressed with the web design, can you tell us more about the web site (like is there any cool functions and technology) ?


Embroi.com is an online shop system. We bought the e-commerce system from a Chinese software vendor and then made little changes to it correspondingly.

2. Is Embroi.com china based ? Tell us more about the corporate profile and who are the key person behind it ?

Embroi.com hosting is powered by Godaddy.com,the company is in China.

3. One challenge of e-commerce web site is the warehousing and logistics of the product, tell us how these issues are managed ?

Embroo.com is just newly opened.The warehousing and logistics of the product is not a big issue at the moment.

4. Tell us more about the products, are they hand-made and where is the main production ?

We sell pure hand-made embroidery.Only this can represent the real Chinese embroidery.

5. How do you see the trend of e-commerce particularly in China and also Malaysia ?

We are traditional embroidery embroidery manufacturers and dealers and ventured into e-commerce to expand market reach.We believe in the bright prospects in Malaysia especially the Chinese market.

6. Malaysia's Pikom is launching a buy online campaign during the national ICT month which will be held starting end of July, is there any activities leading up to that ?

We know little about it.

Google Officially Announced OS

We have heard that network OS is coming, where it is supposed to power network computer.

Last year we did talk about the success of Apple and iPod and software operating system platform. My conclusion was that iPod was able to take the lead because of Apple's ability of operating system to power the hardware which during that time Sony didn't have.

Then I assume that Google is probably trying to own cloud computing.

And now, apart from Android OS platform for mobile devices, Google is announcing the Chrome OS; lightweight operating system to power netbook. It will still not be available until second half of 2010 and they still have plenty of things to do, but I assume that at least the R & D has been completed.

While it may still take years before Google is able to accumulate enough man-hours to produce a full desktop and server operating system but this is definitely a good start.

And worst still, it is going to be open source. This means that:
  • Google will leverage on the open source community to enhance and support the product
  • Google is not likely going to make money from licensing, but this is definitely going to take Google to uncharted territory while protecting its existing business model.


While SUN Microsystem is hoping that acquisition by Oracle will be the right direction, Google still sides with open source to compete with competitors.

This is also a high time for Google to counter the initial success of Microsoft Bing's search engine which is gaining momentum.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Enterprise Collaboration System - What to look for ?

Enterprise collaboration is the biggest want by all corporate IT users, but yet not many of such software have been deployed. One of the reason is that it is preferred to be web based and the web platform has been undergoing endless evolution.

Last year (2008), when IDC was talking about Green IT, it published a statistic about CIO perspective's on technology versus company's competiveness, web based collaboration tool was considered as the most important. Check out page 6.

As the matter of fact, the smaller your company is, the more automation you required.

Check out the white paper from SocialText.

#1: Tightly integrate social networking

#2: Ensure absolute confidence in adoption rate
  • Must be dead easy to get started
  • Must be self-evident: What’s in it for me?
  • The user must be in control
  • Should have high social incentive
#3: Make sure it fits the way people work
  • Email integration
  • Support for mobile devices
  • Offline access
  • Working with outside 3rd parties
#4: Aggregate information from all sources

#5: Assess Total Cost of Ownership
  • People services
  • Budget considerations & hidden costs
  • Support
  • De-risking the single biggest success factor: Adoption
  • Up front investment
  • Upgrades
  • Time-to-results
  • Administration
  • User flexibility

Saturday, July 04, 2009

How to Make Form Controls Grow Automatically According to Form Size (VB.NET)


The best practice is NOT to explicitly reset the width and height dynamically.

The best practice is to make use of 'Dock','AutoSize','Autoscroll','Parent' and 'Padding' (optional) properties of each control.

'Padding' property is useful to create borders.


Not all controls come with 'AutoSize' and 'AutoScroll' property.

Check out the sample code (in VB.NET Visual Studio 2008 SP1) which consists of two categories:
  1. Controls within a form.
  2. Form within a form. (You have to make use of MDI features)
It is easier to understand and learn by just checking out the codes.

With these methods, you don't have to worry about anything when your application is run on either 14 inch or 17 inch monitor.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Search Engine Marketing Event (14th July 2009 KL)

SEO the Google way, or SEO in the legal way.

This event is conducted by Fabian Lim and Hanson Toh as guest speaker.

Fabian Lim, Director of Internet Services from Clickmedia.Com.Sg, a leading performance marketing firm with presence in Singapore, KL, Indonesia and the US. Clickmedia is a partner of ours in implementing SEM projects around the region.

Hanson Toh, Country Consultant for Google Inc.

The 8 hour day course will cover a series of hands on practical (please bring your own notebooks) on:
  • Search Engine Marketing (Pay Per Click) campaigns using Google
    Adwords for companies
  • Search Engine Optimzation tactics to have your company's website
    organic search results ranked favorably and generate leads.
  • Learn tactics to generate meaningful ROIs and manage your search
    ad budgets.


Effective tips for company marketers or business units on running campaigns and what to avoid. If you're outsourcing this currently or have some basic knowledge, it will even be more useful for you attend as it will help you dispel myths and preconveived ideas you already have.

To register and for more details, please go to www.clickevents.com.my.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Tech Blog Malaysia Statistics (June 09)

As usual, check out the analysis for 2008.

For month of Jan 2009.
For month of Feb 2009.
For month of Mar 2009.
For month of April 2009.
For month of May 2009.

For June 2009, we have the followings:
  1. The brand of this blog
  2. A company providing HAPS technology
  3. A Malaysia edutainment portal.
  4. An organization dealing with software piracy enforcement.
  5. Promotional codes for IT certification.
  6. Main blogger of this blog.
  7. Malaysia Internet.
Overview:

  • Total monthly traffic decreased by as much as 3.84%
  • Traffic from referring sites decreased by 0.33%
  • Google still top contributor (63.06%). Down from last month.
  • Top 5 countries (Malaysia, US, India, UK, Singapore). Check out here.
  • New visitors 84.71% (down from last month).