We got a new camera

We got ourselves the Canon PowershotPro1 in readiness for the big day (so that we can preserve the gore in glorious technicolour for all time). It’s a (as the Aussies would say) Beaut! Expect to see quite a few landscape and macro photos appearing here in the near future.

The link above is to the DP Review site, which contains more information on the camera than the manual does (and that took me all weekend to absorb). The overall conclusion from DPReview was that it was a good canmera, with one or two minor problems relating to speed, but it got a Recommended status.

Cord blood yields ‘ethical’ embryonic stem cells

New scientist is carrying a story about the use of cord blood in the preparation of embryonic stem cells. When K & I saw references to preservation of cord blood around the hospital we thought that it was to be preserved for later use by the baby in the case of operations and anemia. Now I am wondering whether they actually want it for other people. In which case my eagerness is slightly less!

And there’s another thing – what is different about the blood flowing through the cord anyway? I thought that a baby’s immune system was suppressed during gestation and for a while after (while breast-feeding?) and that that was necessary since the baby was receiving umbilical infusions of its mother’s blood (and antibodies etc). Is the blood different in the placenta? Is the placenta maintaining its own blood supply that is cut off from that of the mother? How does it get oxygenated?

So many questions.

My OPML file

I thought that since I have installed SharpReader (the best RSS news reader on the net) for Kerry on Carbon, I might upload a few of the feeds that I read daily for her (and you) to check out.

Take a look at this file. You may have to convert the file to have the extension “.opml” to be able to import it into sharpreader, but it should work eventually. Its quite cool what is being done with RSS lately, my meager feed collection includes feeds for the weather, for VSS checkins at work, for new jobs posted in Melbourne, blogs, gmail, photos from friends and of course news syndication – it even has newsfeeds of new newsfeeds. I wonder what else is being done with it. I know that it’s become the latest thing to attack Microsoft with (over whether they are renaming the technology to web feeds or just naming a feature in IE7). Either way, it seems to be garnering a lot of venture capital these days, especially in the mobile sphere, so someone must be doing something cool with it.

Deeply disoriented – my Ray Kurzweil parody

I find the whole orientation of the heavens to be contrary to all that I’ve known as true“.

So said Andrew Matthews, at a recent conference of the cognescenti. He went on to add that the orientation and movement of the heavens in the antipodes is exactly the opposite of what is found in the northern hemisphere, and that he is the first to recognise this fact and to talk about it.

First Light!!!!!!!!

No posts have been forthcoming on this blog, so far, but that doesn’t mean I’ve been idle. Far from it! I’ve been hard at work till late at night working on the tidying up of the source code. Part of that involved coming up with a new name for the system. There is already a system on GotDotNet (seems like an orphan, but who can tell) called Norm, that is a .NET ORM system.

So I have renamed AabsNorm “Koan” which seems quite apt – a complex puzzle whose solution expands your perceptions. Very apt.

Anyway, Koan saw first light today with end to end operations retrieving a collection of data from the SqlServer 2000 Northwind database. That’s more of an achievement that you might think. It involves reading schema data from the database, generation of a domain model, construction of object based queries, dynamic creation of targeted SQL queries for the target database, presentation of the target query to the back end API (ADO.NET/XML RAW in this case) retrieval of the data from the database, deserialisation of the data into domain objects and registration of those objects in an instance registry for sharing across AppDomain boundaries. All in all, things are going well. Most of the central code of the system now passes FxCop’s analysis (at least in terms of naming conventions, validation, etc) so the code is way more readable than a month ago. I have also been working on Oaf, the Orm Abstraction Framework – Object Queries on Steroids!

There’s still a long way to go. Pressing tasks involve targeting of OleDb rather than SqlClient APIs that will enable you to access anything for which a data provider has been written, specifically Access and MySql, the two other platforms I really want Koan to work on. That will take some time to achieve, but will be worth it in the end.