Recent Posts

RSS Feeds

Load Testing Tool

Here is a cool load testing tool that I discovered yesterday. Seems a friend of mine has been working on a load testing tool that is designed for web application developers. LoadStorm takes advantage of the Amazon EC2 cloud to dynamically instantiate as many servers as needed to generate http load against a target app.

The key objective of LoadStorm is to be easy and cheap. No servers to configure, and no open source to download and install. That eliminates most of the hassle that is a common reason developers don't load test more often. It's such a pain to cobble together the hardware.

Did I say cheap? They will give you a free subscription for 50 concurrent users (no expiration), and 500 users for only $40/month. That subscription gets you UNLIMITED tests for the month. So you don't have to worry about getting the test exactly right the first time. Performance engineering requires iteration because you find a bottleneck, fix it, and run the test again to find the next one.

My friend has figured out that by not penalizing us for running multiple tests, we will test early and test often. What a cool concept. And if you want to prepare for the Slashdot Effect, you can get up to 50,000 concurrent users. Here is hoping your site gets /.'d for all the right reasons :)

Permalink     1 Comment

My ObjC Blog

My primary blog is here.

Permalink     2 Comments

O'Reilly iPhoneLive Conference


Exciting times indeed.

Raven and I are really excited about this event and can't wait to see you there!

Permalink     No Comments

Episode 6 - The Final Episode

I finally finished Episode 6 of The Core Animation Screencast. Man is is way over due (sorry!). It a bit long again but its really worth it (I think, but you will have to be the judge). In this episode we wrap things up with the final bits of transformation and filter goodness so that we get a really nice looking app.

Here is a teaser screenshot for the curious. The pics were taken by my amazingly talented wife on a recent trip to the Grand Canyon.

This has been a particularly fun series to put together. I really enjoy doing screencasts. If you have an opinion on what would be good to have next please let me know. I'm thinking an album art city would be fun to build but there is so much to cover for all the folks new to the platform. A nice Xcode intro or IB how too would be fun.

Permalink     No Comments

Code Breaker 'In Review'

I got the next chapter in Gala Factory pushed out to the app store, just waiting on apple review. In the mean time please check out the demo video on youtube, and then line up to buy a thousand copies. Thanks!

Permalink     No Comments

Cease and Desist no more?

Despite the mass of folks that got it wrong (specifically Matt Asay Red Hat did not send me the C&D letter, and my essay was not really about C&D's anyway). The dust up about the trademarking of Open Source projects was quite interesting.

Hopefully (but unlikely) the corp lawyers that send out the C&D's will read this and learn.

Permalink     No Comments

iPhone game in top 50!

I'm totally stoked to say that my Dot Game has made it into the top 50 of all games on the store!

Buy early, Buy often!

Permalink     1 Comment

iPhone App Store Live!

Hard to believe that its finally here. I am really excited and can hardly believe that I have stuff there!

Riddle Racer

Dot Game

Buy Early, Buy Often :)

Permalink     4 Comments

iPhone book and objc blog...

I am constantly blown away that the cool winding and twisting of life... I am done the Core Animation book, now just waiting for the iPhone NDA to lift so we can ship it. I started a book on iPhone for the prag's, which is very very fun and cool too.

I don't post much here because I spend most of my time on PrEV these days. Thanks for stopping by...

Permalink     No Comments

Core Animation Screen Cast Episode 4 On Line

I finished Episode 4 up last night and the gerbils (i.e. Mike Clark) @ PragProg already turned it into a downloadable movie. You can grab it here.

This episode came in a bit long (at 42 minutes) but I could not think of what to delete. The main thrust of the episode is introducing 3D transformations and in order to make that happen I did a bunch of refactoring to the app so the layers would be setup to make beautiful cover flow goodness. At first I was thinking it would be good to just make the refactoring happen off line and then paste it in as canned code. After running though half the episode doing that I thought I was just leaving out too much good stuff about debugging tips and refactoring process. So anyway I put it in and it came in big.

Hope you enjoy it!

Permalink     No Comments


iPhone, key arrived, os installing, nothing to be said, NDA and all that, very excited...

Lame attempt to be funny, hard to be silent.

Permalink     1 Comment

Mac Developer Round Table

Scotty was kind enough to have me on the Mac Developer Roundtable tonight. If you are interested in WWDC or iPhone SDK please have a listen. It was tons of fun! Thanks again Scotty!

For those of you coming here from Scotty's site check out my Core Animation blog, its probably more relevant as this is my java blog...

Permalink     No Comments

New Mini Online...

As I documented here my poor old PPC mini was having trouble keeping up with the success of my wife's iPhone Games so I bought and configured a new Intel mini and shipped it off last week. It went on line yesterday and is now barely above 10% CPU usage (the PPC mini was at 100% since ballblast came out).

I took the opportunity to upgrade to Roller 4.0 and update the theme for my blog.

Permalink     No Comments

Coming Home...

Way back in college I had the great privilege of working on a NeXTCube (started on system 0.9, yes I'm old...) with Mathematica doing some really cool non-linear stuff. It was my first exposure to Unix (which of course spoiled me rotten) and I was hooked. After the end of the semester I managed to land a job building code on the NeXT (doing 3d visualization of stress in materials). I had no idea what I was doing so I bought a book on object oriented programming, a book on smalltalk and a book that was a collection of research papers that mentioned Objective-C. I did not sleep much, got a second credit card and bought a NeXTStation (or pizza box as they were called). After I bought that baby (25MHz, 8MB Ram, 105 MB scsi hard drive, oh yeah!) I really did not sleep or study my aero space engr stuff either :) I still have it BTW and it boots just fine into NeXTStep 4.0, I put a 512MB SCSI disk in it (before I retired it). It also has the printer if anyone out there is in great need of a 25MHz 8MB computer I'm your guy.

After I graduated I looked around for a NeXT related job but nothing happened before my offer to go work at Rockwell Int. at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston expired so I took the job @ NASA and did some cool stuff. But other things were in store...

About 6 months into my full time employment I got a call from one of the consulting companies that I'd sent my resume to and they had some work doing NeXT training for Meijer. I jumped on that job in a second. While I was sad to leave behind astronauts, the space shuttle etc. The chance to work on NeXTStep full time was too tempting. That was 1992. I did professional NeXT stuff until 1998 when I jumped on the Java bandwagon and did a Java startup or two. Then went back to consulting doing enterprise java stuff etc etc, a lot of which has been documented on this blog...

Now to the point of this rather lengthy reminiscence. In November of 2007 I quit a great Java related gig to give the OSX world a shot (OSX is NeXTStep for those that don't know) and to focus on an OSX book for the Pragmatic Programmers. The book is finally beta, you can take a look at it here. I fell like I'm coming home writing a book about Cocoa related technologies. While hardware has come a long way the underlying philosophy of OSX has not changed since the NeXTStep days. It makes developing fun again (at least for me). Who knows if I'll do more java or not, best gig would be a combo, front end OSX, back end Java EE.

You can see some of the beauty possible with Core Animation on Apple's site or of course you could buy the book and mess with the samples. It has been a fun time and I'm really stoked about the transition.

Permalink     3 Comments

Zero G?

So way back in the day when I worked at NASA one of the projects I was involved in was the space suits for Reagan's space station. That was supposed to be assembled from K'enx type things and they needed new suits to give the astronauts more time in space (among other things). Anyway as part of that work I got to go flying in what is affectionately known at NASA as the Vomit Comet.

Anyway I noticed that Virgin Galactic announced their space ship today.

Step 1

At a cost of about $200,000 USD for 4 minutes of Zero-G (or around $830/second) it reminded me of the good ol' Vomit Comet. Which also reminded me of Zero G Corp. While its not orbital its a bit more cost effective at around $4000 (with 7 to 8 minutes of zero g or around $8.30/second). So while the Virgin Galactic flight might be cool, for the working class there is always Zero G Corp.

Permalink     No Comments