Monday, 12 December 2011
I presented at the Knowledge 11 Conference for ServiceNow! on December 8, 2011. It was nice to be able to share some of the success stories we are developing here at Swiss Re related to IT Service Management.
The presentation was with one of our colleagues (exceptional chap) from Infosys, Subbarao Chaganty about the concept and IT Capability we developed around "Task Management" in ServiceNow!
Some people will tout the values of Runbook Automation in ServiceNow. I think they've done a great job at developing something cool ... but it really is only applicable in circumstances where you have a fully repeatable end-to-end process you can automate. After working in this space for almost 10 years (automation related to IT services and infrastructure) it's a daunting and often impossible task to get buy in from all of the key stakeholders to support the documentation, agree to an end to end process, and the subsidiary tasks --- all are strong requirements before you can automate fully and properly.
How did we differentiate ourselves so that we can contribute value back to the business?
You'll have to wait and see ... The presentation should be available online at some point in time: http://www.slideshare.net/servicenowdotcom/tag/knowledge11-europe
Monday, 17 October 2011
For those who are new to reading this and that, I had this fantastic idea 30 months ago to move my wife who was six months pregnant to Doha for what was sold as an epic work adventure in "thought leadership" and a genuine opportunity to work on some pretty neat things.
We have a lot of fond memories from our time in Doha, especially the ones that happened the week after October 24, 2009. Jack was born on the 24th via emergency c-section. A little over 5lbs. Not bad for being 2 months early! He spent 5 days in NICU and neither of us could hold him that entire time. On the 5th day, they said right ... Lucy, discharged. Jack, discharged IF we could bottle feed him. ha ha.
A lot of people told us before, during and after, how time flies ... It really has. Jack is a proper boy now ... full weight, full menace. Terrible 2's have started early and he fully enjoys testing the limits of Lucy. He's trying to find his boundaries and is enjoying each and every minute of it.
Here is Jack from Yesterday:
I had written a bit on his blog the other day too. http://jack.dolgy.com/
Anyway ... the next post will be back to uber geeking. Just thought I'd duck out while my computer is being rebuilt and leave some candid thoughts..
Friday, 14 October 2011
I swapped to Ubuntu from Windows. What a great experience. So good, here is the link to the original blog post and a nice ubuntu graphic.
October 14, 2011:
To my surprise, my computer prompts me to upgrade to 11.10. Fancy. New. Minor changes. "Cosmetic". Well, you know what? The upgrade didn't work so well. Why? Well, [ Bug 811441 ] reported on July16, 2011, is why.
I followed one of the suggested fixes. Basically, moving all contents of /var/run and /var/lock to /run and /run/lock ... removing /var/run and /var/lock and then creating sym links from /run and /run/lock to /var/run and /var/lock ... That's how I'm online now, writing this rant.
Reading the bug report, it feels as though, my next reboot will cause me to have the same problems again. Honestly. This is why Linux has never been able to catch up with Microsoft or Mac ... a normal user who doesn't have resources and a knack for typing and hacking will never, in technical terms, unfuck themselves ... or at least their system.
At what point will developers do proper regression testing and QA before something is unleashed publicly as an official release?
For as much as I don't enjoy Windows ... I never had these problems. Ever. That's something to admire ...
On the flip side, with Fedora, RedHat previously and now Ubuntu ... it's just one nasty fart under the sheets after another that leaves a bitter taste in my mouth and sours the overall experience that was going so well...
Wednesday, 28 September 2011
The game was in Munich. I live in Zurich. Train to Munich from here takes 6 hours. Driving, 3 hours. Flying ... too much $$
I drove. Of course. Headed out Monday evening and arrived in Munich just in time to grab a few pints with a former colleague. The next day ... game day ... a lot of MCFC supporters were flying in. 4 of them met up with us at the Hofbräuhaus ... here we had some food and beer. Unfortunately, the night before I had a bad beer. So bad in fact, it joins only one other beer on the banned list.
Beer Banned List:
Saturday, 27 August 2011
If you want to root your Galaxy S, here's a good page, but it's not good if you don't have Odin: http://androidflip.com/how-to-root-samsung-galaxy-s-running-xxjvr-android-2-3-4-gingebread/
- I downloaded the “CF-Root-XX_OXA_JVR-v4.1-CWM3RFS.tar”
- Extracted it which left me with a zImage file
- Ran the command: heimdall flash --kernel zImage
Simple. Right? Well, what if you wanted to upgrade the full OS on your Galaxy S to something like uh, Gingerbread ... (2.3.4) or even (3) when it comes out? Same principle really, just a few more arguments for heimdall. I came across this on the site: http://wmarkito.wordpress.com/2011/02/11/flashing-android-froyo-in-a-galaxy-s-with-ubuntu-and-heimdall/
heimdall flash --factoryfs factoryfs.rfs --cache cache.rfs --param param.lfs --kernel zImage --modem modem.bin --pit s1_odin_20100512.pit
Friday, 15 July 2011
Saturday, 2 July 2011
- Made a USB boot of 11.04 Ubuntu
- Made a USB boot of Windows 7 Premium
- Backed everything up that I had ....
- I have a touch pad on my laptop. I hate it. It's a Lenovo ... I have a nice track ball. I LOVE IT. Problem is, disabling the touch pad isn't as simple as right clicking somewhere and doing something. You have to install another application that does this and that ... or you can edit the X11.conf ... yeah, not today. Thanks.
- I am extremely cautious to only install "stuff" from the Ubuntu Software Center. I have absolutely no issues downloading crap, compiling it and installing it ... however, I want to see how long I can last without fundamentally making changes to what's going on underneath this pretty facade. Which brings me to my next gripe. The software I want, doesn't exist. For 10 years, it has been this continuous battle I've had deep down about passion versus productivity ... seems you can have both ...?
- Exchange 2010 connectivity. I have my Samsung Galaxy S (Android) configured to connect to my Exchange server and get emails and calendar and all that. In a full blown operating system (Ubuntu 11.04) I cannot. I have tried Evolution. I have tried Zimbra. It's sad really. Sad and pathetic that a little phone can out function and out feature my all mightly laptop and operating system. Guess what? This is a reminder to future generations why iPods / iPads and smart phones are taking over ... they work. they just work.
- Multi-screen display, and HDMI are working beautifully.
- Performance is what I had expected ... Fantastic. I now have a Windows 7 VM running while I have my development environment running in another CentOS VM. At the same time, my Ubuntu experience is not slowing down and is not chewing away memory ...
- Hardware support. If you have experience with Linux, and Red Hat....going back over the years, getting the right level of support for your hardware was horrible. It's only just recently I've forgotten what the chip-set was on the network card for my old computer ... the reason why it was etched into my brain? very poor support ... compiling kernel modules, trying fancy things that didn't work ... it was a nightmare. EVERYTHING on my Lenovo laptop works. Bluetooth, wireless, camera, touchpad :(, trackball, HDMI ... That's super..
Monday, 6 June 2011
It wasnt just a weekend in England....it was a weekend ALL over England.
Landed at London City which is fantastic if you want to be in the city. Instead, DLR and tube to Euston to get a train to Birmingham International and then the 30min drive to the in-laws and Jack.
The next day (Friday), back to International to pick up a rental and drive down to Midhurst and a wedding on Saturday at Cowdray ruins.
Sunday it was up super early to drive to our newest niece's Christening...to which Lucy and I are Godparents. This was outside Tamworth.
After the Christening....headed back to Four Oaks and then to The Lodge for a wonderful curry.
This morning, up early...rental back to International. Train to London Euston. Tube & DLR to LCY..flight back to Zurich.
I'm tired but wanted to show off the happy family in the picture on this post.
Thursday, 2 June 2011
Sunday, 22 May 2011
REST: Representational State Transfer: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Representational_State_Transfer
Without getting into too many details, what I love is how easily I was able to create a REST API that interfaces with Apache Cassandra. I have an API that fully supports PUT / POST / GET / DELETE / SEARCH without having to write all that much code. Admittedly, I did it with phpcassa which may not be the best, most efficient, or whatever .. but I have to say. It works and I rarely touch the code.
Some simple concepts I implemented:
- A resource is a 1:1 mapping to a Cassandra column family. For example:
- http://api.example.com/user/ is a reference to the "user" column family
- The element that follows the resource is a 1:1 mapping to a key in a Cassandra column family
- http://api.example.com/user/sdolgy is a reference to the key "sdolgy" in the column family "user"
Friday, 13 May 2011
fast forward to 3 weeks ago and i received an email about a player getting hurt and not being able to play. checked my schedule and some other things and the planets had aligned. this dolgy was going to hong kong. there were some other reasons for the trip too. met up with some old friends and old colleagues i haven't seen in a few years. that was nice.
the tournament itself is as always, very well organized. if you ever get a chance ... find Keith Fong at MegaBox and let him know that the tournament is, and you'll find out if you are ever here, one of the best organized tournaments and facilities around.
the team this year didn't fair very well. 0 wins, 4 losses. 2 goals scored. but that's ok. it was still fun.
the food here is brilliant. the mtr here is brilliant. i really do enjoy coming here... but it's time to go. i miss this guy:
gone a week without seeing or speaking to Lucy and Jack has been very hard. The timing and schedules and all of that haven't worked out ... been insanely busy days of hilarity and hi-jinx
British Airways. Take me home.
Tuesday, 5 April 2011
We spent the last 9 days in Toronto. here is a photo of us all on our last morning. i look like a goof and ruin the photo....but how awesome do jack and lucy look?
videos can be seen at: http://youtube.com/sdolgy
photos are on picasa: google search picasa sdolgy
highlights from the trip:
- $7.00 for 1 week of smartphone data plan on rogers
- jack used a straw for the first time
- jack said the word 'car'
- uncle jake and jack got on very well...nice to.see
Friday, 18 March 2011
So nice. Now it works.
Tuesday, 15 March 2011
above are the photos for march. you'll see some good photos, some decent photos and some awesome photos of jack with his new audi...
Friday, 11 March 2011
"From a corporate social responsibility standpoint, it is becoming increasingly difficult to associate our brand with sports events which could lead to serious and irresponsible accidents; action must be taken by the NHL before we are encountered with a fatality,"http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey/nhl/article/952137--air-canada-tells-nhl-to-take-off
Normally, I am not a fan of Air Canada, but this is great.
I love hockey, and like others, I am sitting around, waiting (not by choice) to hear news of a fatality in the NHL.
With a little boy who will one day play ice hockey -- he has no choice in this matter -- it's important that he grows up aware of the good and bad. Growing up, I knew all too well how devestating checking from behind is. This was rampant in the late 80's and 90's ... Now, it's rare to see and it's great. Kids grow up knowing its bad and it promotes better behaviour. Sure, some kids will never get it...that's just life. Some people grow up to be murderers. We can't fix everyone ...
For me, I want Jack to grow up knowing right from wrong. I believe fights and hitting must exist in ice hockey ... but deliberate intents to injure ... WWE styles ... they have no place. If your hit or actions are good enough to get on a Don Cherry -- Rock em' Sock em' video ... I think you have overstepped the boundaries.
Well done Air Canada for stepping up.
Thursday, 10 March 2011
"HipHop for PHP transforms PHP source code into highly optimized C++. It was developed by Facebook and was released as open source in early 2010."Much to my surprise, tonight, I downloaded, configured, installed and tested. It all worked, first pass. No tinkering, no nothing.
Second, I took the most complex PHP project I have, with lots of different dependencies and pushed it through. Guess what?
It works. It really works.
Wednesday, 9 March 2011
$CASSANDRA_HOME/bin/nodetool -h 10.0.0.1 decommission
As I understand, when this is run, the node will stream all it's data out to other nodes in the cluster and remove itself.
When I view the ring from another node:
10.0.0.1 Down Leaving 218.71 KB 21.76% 61078635599166706937511052402724559481
-- maybe this is my problem: CASSANDRA-2072
The way amazon operates is quite interesting. All instances get a dynamic internal IP. That IP stays for the duration of that machine being on. If you restart, the IP changes. Now, you can pay for an elastic IP which maps to the instance ... and that never changes. But it's mapped. The instance never really knows anything about it. It always has this internal IP .... 10.10.10.10 one day, reboot, 10.20.10.20 the next ....
Now, security groups. It's one big glorified access list. You have to specify which security group your instance belongs to. Fair enough. By default, it's deny all. You can start opening things up, saying that 0.0.0.0/0 can access your instance on TCP/80. That means the world can get to that instance on port 80.
With me so far?
So what if you wanted to deploy a multi-tier LAMP application to AWS:
2 x web server
2 x application server
2 x mysql ....
How would the security groups look then?
security group 1: web servers
security group 2: application servers
security group 3: database servers
Simple! You then configure your access lists ... right? Sort of. If you want to do it properly, you define that only TCP/80 & TCP/443 are open to 0.0.0.0/0 for security group 1.
Security group 1 should have access to security group 2 on some ports .. like 8080 or 80 or 8443 ....
Security group 2 should have access to security group 3 on some ports ... like 3306 (mysql)
Normal instinct would say, let's put in the IP's of each machine ( 10.20.10.20/32 and 10.10.10.10/32) for example ... well ... in the AWS world, this isn't correct. When you restart your machine, the IP will change and your rules will not be valid.
Now unfortunately, the way to get around this is not available through the AWS management console. The only way I've found so far (limited amount of looking) is to download the ec2 client tools, generate an X509 key pair, and use the tools:
ec2-authorize us-app -P tcp -p 8080 -o us-www
What this does, is says that the security group "us-app" allows the origin "us-www" on TCP/8080
You are defining the policies with other groups. This is great because you can then add new instances into whatever group you want, or restart an instance, and the policies will still be valid.
Hopefully this is of use to someone one day. I'm glad I've stumbled upon it now after some small pain points and not later when the pain points would be much higher ....!
Friday, 25 February 2011
oh well. a new chapter ... a single IP
Monday, 14 February 2011
Thursday, 3 February 2011
In the end, you know what the problem was?
The default is to have localhost commented out. For whatever reason, PHP on windows was unable to resolve localhost and could not connect to Cassandra. Once this was uncommented, the flood gates opened and some phpcassa goodness arrived.
thobbs was great. the project url, to which he is the author: https://github.com/thobbs/phpcassa
Tuesday, 1 February 2011
Test 1 -- via linksys wifi connection to ubee router
Test 2 -- Direct connection to ubee router
http://www.speedtest.net/result/1137728815.png (Zurich, CH)
http://www.speedtest.net/result/1137730549.png (Herndon, VA (US))
http://www.speedtest.net/result/1137736648.png (Dubendorf, CH)
http://www.speedtest.net/result/1137738064.png (Zurich, CH)