Personal

Go Go Hugo blog

spf13 responsive website

After after a few months of work I’m happy to display the newest incarnation of spf13.com.

MongoDB Driver days hackathon round up

Two times a year the drivers team at 10gen gathers together for a face to face meeting to spend time together working on issues and setting forth our goals for the upcoming six months. In September 2012 we all converged on New York City for the second ever driver days. This time we split up into teams for a hack-a-thon. As maintainers of drivers & integrations in over a dozen different languages while we are on the same team, it isn’t often that we actually work together on the same codebase.

The Biggest Myths Surrounding Disaster Recovery

There are a variety of reasons businesses either do not have a disaster recovery plan or their current plan is substandard. The beliefs of the people in charge of developing these processes (business owners and IT department) play a significant role in how effective the overall strategy will be. This is problematic when the decision-makers have bought into one or more of the common myths surrounding disaster recovery. Myth – Disaster Recovery is Expensive and Resource Intensive One of the biggest reasons businesses put off developing a disaster recovery strategy is because they believe it will become too expensive and resource intensive.

Protecting Intellectual Property on Your Blog

The protection of your intellectual property, or any information that you post to your blog, forum or website, can be a tricky subject. While there are those unscrupulous few out there in the cyber world who will purposely copy your words as their own, there are more people that are simply ignorant of the laws, unaware that they are stealing when they copy and reuse your musings. According to a criminal lawyer at an Orlando based firm that we spoke to, there are steps that you can take to make sure that your intellectual property is protected.

Giving the most viewed presentation on slideshare ever at OSCON

At OSCON 2012 in Portland I gave a presentation on building your first MongoDB application. Over 150 people were in the audience, a pretty significant number of this type of hands on tutorial. Certainly worth the weeks of preparation that went into developing it. While at OSCON I put the slides online at SlideShare where during the four day conference the amassed over 20k views and within a couple weeks over 30k views.

Add PhotoshopCS5 support to Picasa

If you are like me you use Picasa to manage your photos, but recognize that the editing options are very limited. You can easily add a button in Picasa that will allow you to edit the current picture in photoshop. I took an existing button built for PhotoshopCS3 and updated it to work with this more contemporary version. It’s limited to working only on Windows. Install Photoshop CS5 Button in Picasa This will open in Picasa (may prompt you to allow this) and add the button.

Don't look now, I'm on DZone

I’m happy to announce that going forward you’ll be able to read my articles on DZone as well as spf13.com. DZone has invited me to join their MVB program. They describe their program as: DZone’s Most Valuable Blogger program brings together a group of highly talented bloggers, authors, and technologists actively writing about topics of interest to the developer community. These people are recognized in the industry for their contributions and deep technical knowledge on subjects ranging from software design and architecture to programming on a range of platforms including Java, .NET, Ruby and others.

New personal site powered by GitHub Pages

At 10gen we had new headshots taken recently. I think mine came out great. I took this opporitunity to play with GitHub pages and update http://stevefrancia.com. You should goto http://stevefrancia.com and checkout my new personal page. If you like it, fork it. The entire page is here https://github.com/spf13/spf13.github.com, it being a derivative of https://github.com/weightshift/The-Personal-Page.

MongoDB and PHP, The Book

I wrote a book. It is published by O’Reilly, and available now on Amazon, O’Reilly Media and a bunch of other sites, available in both print and as an ebook. From the introduction: What would happen if you optimized a data store for the operations application developers actually use? You’d arrive at MongoDB, the reliable document-oriented database. With this concise guide, you’ll learn how to build elegant database applications with MongoDB and PHP.

Windows Power User Tools

I’m a huge fan of Windows 7. It’s the first time I’ve ever run a Microsoft OS on my primary (home) machine. I’ve compiled a set of programs that I have found to be invaluable in using Windows for serious development and computing. All are free and clean of any ads or spyware. EaseUS® Partition Master 9.1 Home Edition As Partition Magic alternative, EaseUS Partition Master Home Edition is a ALL-IN-ONE partition solution and disk management freeware.

LDS SORT Tech Conference 2011

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the LDS Church’s SORT tech conference. Nearly 1200 people were in attendance. There were 23 concurrent tracks and I was able to present two presentations and be on a panel with other NoSQL solutions including Cassandra, CouchDB, Neo4j, Riak and MarkLogic. The panel went for 90 minutes the first half being an 5 – 10 minute introduction of each technology and the second half being a QA period.

Announcing Projects & Presentations

I’ve decided to expand the scope of this site a bit to be more than just a blog. It makes sense, many of my posts are how tos and often for my own projects. Additionally now each project will have a legitimate project “homepage” for things like GitHub where that’s requested. So without further ado… Please checkout my Projects and Presentations sections of my website spf13.com. For now most of the projects are centered around VIM and PHP and the Presentations around Ecommerce and MongoDB.

The most productive 20 minutes of my day

As part of my new years resolution to get in shape and spend less dough I decided that I’d be better of walking from Grand Central to my office on 18th St. I save ~$5 a day not taking the subway and get all the extra benefit of walking the 1.5 miles. A few days into this something wonderful and unexpected happened. Instead of spending 20 minutes riding in a cattle car, I was able to take 25 minutes where I was able to think about everything I had to do for the day.

MongoDB & Ecommerce : A Perfect Combination

Last night I gave a presentation on MongoDB & Ecommerce. OpenSky is the first company to use MongoDB in production for ecommerce. I shared why we went this route, and why it’s an obvious and powerful combination. At OpenSky we use MongoDB to develop the next ecommerce platform. OpenSky also uses Symfony 2, Doctrine 2, PHP 5.3, PHPUnit 3.5, jQuery, node.js, Git”) (with gitflow) and a touch of Java”) and Python”).

16 lessons from 16 years

I’ve been working in the technology industry for the last 16 years. I’ve learned a lot. I wanted to share the lessons I’ve learned over the past 16 years, I figured one for each year seemed nice. It’s harder to make a short list than a long one and I had to cut out some helpful things, perhaps I’ll follow this up with another one with the things that didn’t make the list.

Selling on OpenSky

As anyone who reads my blog or follows my tweets knows, I’ve been working for a new startup called OpenSky since February 2010. We’ve launched a new ecommerce platform and aim to reinvent ecommerce as people know it online. One of the big things we are doing is making it so anyone can sell OpenSky products from anywhere online. In the spirit of eating my own dogfood, I’ve become an OpenSky seller.

Transitions

I couldn’t be more excited to announce that I have accepted a position at The Open Sky Project. I am leading the architecture, development and technology. It’s rare in life that one has the opportunity to do what they love to do and be paid to do it. Even rarer is to do something great with people you love working with. At OpenSky I have found this and more. There is an energy and excitement at OpenSky; come spend 10 minutes in our office and you will feel it.

My Online Business Card (Vcard)

I wanted to polish up my javascript coding so I decided that the best way to do that was with a project that I’ve been wanted to do for a while anyway, my own identity site, or my online business card, or my online vcard. The idea was inspired by Tim Van Damme’s website. To accomplish this I wrote a jquery plugin to handle the navigation, animation etc.. The site itself is rather simple, a single html page and a few images.

The Importance of Focus

Imagine if Apple, Disney, Microsoft, etc had chased every oppotunity that they came across. One thing is certain, you wouldn’t recognize their name today. Each of these companies was successful because of extreme focus around a central vision. As Bill Cosby said.. “I don’t know the key to success but the key to failure is to try to please everyone.” Bill Gates achieved monumental success with Microsoft, and attributes “focus” as the key to his success.

Everything is Amazing and Nobody's Happy

This isn’t new, Louis C.K. ranted this on Conan’s show in 2008.. I came across it recently and felt like sharing. I don’t really know much about Louis C.K., this is really the first thing I’ve seen of him, but I think he makes some excellent points. Happiness is learning to appreciate what you have. We live in an amazing time exceeding the dreams of our grandparents. How much happier would we be if we simply realized that.

Conclusion of the Blog-a-thon

Today marks the last post of my blog-a-thon. It has been a learning and growing experience. I have blogged more time in the past 4 weeks as I did the prior 52. It was challenging and rewarding. I feel I have developed as a blogger and having 3 posts a week has brought the blog to the front of my mind. Not only did I write many articles, but I’ve started a bunch more and have ideas for even more than that.

Take Time to Help Others

While it may not seem intuitive taking time out to selflessly help others will help you more than them. This week I haven’t had much time to blog largely because this week many opportunities arose to help others and I took them. Some at work, some outside of work. Helping others will endear them to you. Not only will you ultimately benefit more than what you’ve invested in helping others, but you will also make a real difference in the lives of those whom you work with.

How I Blog

Not surprisingly, given my semi random content, I arrive at my posts a few different ways. 1. I better write this down or I’ll never remember it These posts are the result of a rather frustrating night of problem solving. After reading tons of documentation and googling around, reading forums and discussing on IRC I finally got it working. Now I better write it down so I know how to do it next time.

My Own Private Blogathon

Someone once said a goal is a dream until you write it down … in your blog and tell the world about it. In an effort to focus on blogging a bit more frequently I have decided to start a blogathon beginning today. I will write a post every Monday, Wednesday and Friday for the next four weeks. I think this rate will permit me to continue to keep quality posts, while increasing the frequency and consequently the quantity.

Featured in CIO Magazine!

I don’t know what could be more shocking that opening this month’s edition of CIO magazine and discovering that my blog, this very blog that you are currently reading is one of two blogs featured this month. I am humbled and honored to be mentioned and included with such great peers. To all my new readers I look forward to connecting with you via Twitter or LinkedIn. Check out cio.com for more great content.

Social Media Recognition

Recently I’ve been fortunate to be recognized in a few publications. I extend a warm welcome to all my new friends and followers. I look forward to engaging with you. 12 CIOs Who Love Social Media Luxury 50 Top Twitter Users CIO Twitter Dashboard Related Articles The New CIO: Social Media and the Enterprise(ericbrown.com)

Portero Raises 6.6 Million

I am happy to announce that Portero has raised $6.6 million in funding. The round was led by LFE Capital joined by returning backers including Grosvenor Funds. TechCrunch picked up the announcement early this morning and featured us on their home page. As I have a bit of an insiders view, I felt it was my place to provide a bit of insight into why Portero is such a great company.

One Hundred Pushups

A while back a bunch of people were twittering about the 100 pushup challenge. Thanksgiving was the catalyst for me. I began my quest for better health about a week ago. The premise of the challenge is quite simple. It is a six week program, that if followed, you can do 100 consecutive good form push ups at the end of the program. I am in decent enough shape now, despite not visiting the gym as often as I should.

Promotion

Permit me to shamelesly announce my promotion to Chief Information Officer at Portero Inc. Here is the Press Release on the wire this week. Portero, Inc., is pleased to announce the promotion of Steve P. Francia to the position of Chief Information Officer (CIO), effective immediately. He will continue to report to Michael Sheldon, the company’s chairman and CEO, and will be responsible for operations and technology for the company. In this role he will guide web, technology and infrastructure developments, which will further contribute to rapid and efficient growth, improved customer satisfaction and real-time business intelligence.

Managing Multiple Firefox Profiles in OS X

One of the great features of Firefox is the ability to manage multiple profiles. This is a very handy feature with many different uses. Unfortunately, it isn’t easy to do on a mac. I will show you how to setup multiple profiles on a mac that appear and run like normal mac applications so you can click on them and run them from quicksilver. UPDATED 10/16/09 : Now working with Snow Leopard!