Friday, September 21, 2012

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Attack of the Free iOS To-do Apps

Wunderlist
Wunderlist manages your tasks with a few focused features for organization, all within a beautiful interface and at no cost. There are not many features to speak of in Wunderlist, but its minimalist focus is what makes it work so nicely. Aside from being really pretty, the interface is straightforward and easy to use. You can create lists, add tasks, decide when they're due, and search and sort through everything you add. All your tasks and lists are synchronized with your wunderlist account. It's free on all platforms, fast, lightweight, easy to use, available on the web, and syncs across all of your devices.
Besides offering the latest multi-touch gestures for task editing and management, Astrid has all the goodies like reminders and notifications, syncing to the Astrid webapp and shared tasks with other Astrid users on iOS and Android. Astrid allows you to track your to-dos and projects, set due dates and deadlines for your items, and be alerted when they're due. You can organize your tasks into lists and categories, and then sync those tasks with the Astrid web service or Google Tasks.
Orchestra is designed to be a to-do list app that works kind of like email, letting your tasks live outside of the app and interact with others. It'll let you send tasks to other people, whether or not they use Orchestra, and they can request your assistance on anything as well. You don't need to collaborate to use Orchestra, however, as it's still an excellent to-do app regardless of what features you use. One of the places it shines the most is in the many ways it lets you add tasks. You can forward emails, speak to the app, or type them in normally. It also offers plenty of task viewing filters and methods of organization. It's simple and easy to use, too. It is, overall, about the best way you can manage your tasks because it's flexible enough to work the way you want.
With Any.DO, you get the benefit of multi-touch gestures to mark tasks as complete, the ability to start typing a task and have Any.DO autocomplete it for you, Google Task syncing, and the ability to add to-dos by tapping the microphone icon and speaking to your phone. The webapp on the other hand is just as intuitive as the mobile version, and Chrome users can install the Any.DO Chrome extension to manage their to-dos without having to keep an app tab open. Additionally, sharing is huge in Any.DO, and you can share your to-dos with Facebook, Twitter, and more. The webapp, iOS app, and overall service are still free, and they all sync up nicely so you have the same to-dos on any device.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

When Managers Must Choose Between Right and Right

Defining Moments: When Managers Must Choose Between Right and Right by Joseph L. Badaracco Jr.
A must read book for managers faced with ethical dilemmas at work. The book discusses and brings together different philosophies and overall creates a great reference tool to examine the "Right vs. Right" situations.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Funny Project Management Quotes

"The first 90% of a project takes 90% of the time, the last 10% takes the other 90%."

"Successful project management is all about spotting the projects that will succeed and shouting 'mine' and for the rest ducking and shouting 'yours'."

"A two year project will take three years, a three year project will never finish."

"A user is someone who tells you what they want the day you give them what they asked for."

"A badly defined project will take three times longer than expected, a well defined project only twice as long as expected."

"We haven't got time to work out where we're going, we're late already."

"A little risk management save a lot of fan cleaning."

"Good estimators aren't modest: if it's huge they say so."

"The person who says the project will take the longest and cost the most is the only person with a clue how to do it."

"Nothing's impossible for the person who doesn't have to do it."

"There are no good project managers - only lucky ones."

"If there's a 50% chance of something going wrong then 9 times out of 10 it will."

"The least used phrase in a project manager's vocabulary is 'I do not know'."

"The sooner you get behind schedule the more time you have to make it up."

"There is no such thing as scope creep, only scope gallop."

"If at first you don't succeed remove all evidence you ever tried."

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

"I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by."

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Cloud Computing Certifications

Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge (CCSK)
Cloud computing is being aggressively adopted on a global basis as businesses seek to reduce costs and improve their agility. And one of the critical needs of the industry is to provide training and certification of professionals to assure that cloud computing is implemented responsibly, and with the appropriate security controls.
The Cloud Security Alliance has developed a widely adopted catalogue of security best practices, the "Security Guidance for Critical Areas of Focus in Cloud Computing, V2.1". In addition, the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) whitepaper "Cloud Computing: Benefits, Risks and Recommendations for Information Security" is an important contribution to the cloud security body of knowledge.
The Certificate of Cloud Security Knowledge (CCSK) provides evidence that an individual has successfully completed an examination covering the key concepts of the CSA guidance and ENISA whitepaper.

CloudU is a curriculum designed for IT professionals and business leaders who want to bolster their knowledge of the fundamentals of Cloud Computing. Anyone is able to download CloudU content at any time, but professionals wishing to move to the front of the pack can earn the CloudU certificate, a formal recognition of their knowledge about Cloud Computing.

An IBM Certified Solution Architect - Cloud Computing Infrastructure V1 is a person who can demonstrate the design, plan, architecture and management principles of an IBM cloud computing infrastructure. They can do this with limited assistance from support, documentation or relevant subject matter experts.
Key areas of competency include:

  • Demonstrate the IBM Cloud Computing concepts and design principles
  • Demonstrate the ability to provide a customer with a roadmap from their current IT environment to an IBM Cloud Computing solution.
  • Architect a comprehensive solution that utilizes the IBM Cloud Computing design and blueprint principles to meet the customer-s requirements.
  • Demonstrate the applicability of IBM-s Cloud Management Principle: Operation Model, Service Delivery and Service Management

An IBM Certified Solution Advisor - Cloud Computing Architecture V2 is a person who can clearly explain the benefits and underlying concepts of cloud computing. They can also demonstrate how the IBM Cloud Computing offering helps customers realize these benefits.
Key areas of competency include:

  • Explain the cloud computing concepts.
  • Describe how the customer can realize the benefits of cloud computing within their environment.
  • Identify cloud computing architecture and design principles.
  • Map customer-s requirements to the IBM Cloud Computing offerings.

The Google Apps Certified Deployment Specialist exam certifies IT professionals who demonstrate the fundamental skills and knowledge required to deploy, configure, and migrate to Google Apps for Business.
Candidates who pass the exam receive the Google Apps Certified Deployment Specialist certificate and badge.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Places to See in San Diego

Following are some must-visit places in San Diego besides the usuals like Sea World, San Diego Zoo, and Safari Park:
Seaport Village offers some of San Diego's best shopping, dining and entertainment. With more than 70 shops, restaurants, and attractions, you and your family will be entertained for hours. Featuring some of the best outdoor entertainment in San Diego, Seaport Village is fun for everyone. Looking for some new clothes or a souvenir from your trip to San Diego?
The Gaslamp Quarter is San Diego's historic heart as well as its dining, entertainment and urban shopping district. It is a 16 block historical neighborhood in Downtown San Diego and is the center of downtown night life. The Quarter is home to many events and festivals, including Mardi Gras in the Gaslamp, Street Scene Music Festival, Taste of Gaslamp and ShamROCK, a St. Patrick's Day event. PETCO Park, home of the San Diego Padres is located one block away in downtown San Diego's East Village.
Balboa Park is a 1,200-acre urban cultural park in San Diego, California. In addition to open space areas, natural vegetation green belts, gardens and walking paths, it contains a variety of cultural attractions including many museums, several theaters, and the world famous San Diego Zoo. There are also many recreational facilities and several gift shops and restaurants.
This area has the most beautiful coastline in San Diego and is your best bet for an afternoon or day at the beach or exploring the coast. La Jolla Shores beach is all-round the nicest beach in the area with excellent swimming, changing rooms, easy parking, harmless leopard sharks, and kayak rental shops one block away. You can explore the rocky La Jolla Cove with its coastal trail, sea caves, and baby seals at Children's Beach. You can also browse the shops, galleries and restaurants in trendy upscale La Jolla Village, or visit the excellent Birch Aquarium which is part of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. There are many restaurants. Some standouts include Georges At The Cove Ocean Terrace, Whisknladle, and The Cottage. A little further north the adventurous can find the Knoll at Scripps Coastal Reserve, a hidden gem with awesome views from the top of the 350ft+ sea cliffs (the highest in Southern California) and Torrey Pines State Reserve for hiking and exploring.
This is the epicenter of beach culture in San Diego. It's a peninsula with the ocean and a lively boardwalk on one side, and peaceful Mission Bay Park on the other. Charming alleyways with tiny beach houses criss-cross the peninsula. Mission Bay Park has a great bike/jogging path around the lovely Sail Bay in its northwest corner. Just to the north is the busy Pacific Beach commercial area and Crystal Pier, and just north of there is the quieter Pacific Beach, with its mellow surfing scene. This area is not as swimming friendly as La Jolla Shores because of the heavy shore break. A nice place to eat with a sea view is JRDN restaurant in the strikingly modern Tower 23 Hotel. Two great inexpensive places for breakfast or lunch are the Rubicon Deli and The Mission. You can rent sailboats, kayaks, and SUP boards, for use on Mission Bay, at the Mission Bay Sports Center. Belmont Park in the south part of Mission Bay is touristy and not recommended. For the adventurous a lovely long walk is to head north along Mission Beach, go up the steps at the far north end of Pacific Beach, and then walk through the Bird Rock neighborhood with its hidden coastal access paths to Windansea Beach.
The USS Midway opened in 2004 as a naval aviation museum. Imagine experiencing life at sea aboard one of America's longest-serving aircraft carriers. Visitors to the USS Midway Museum enter a floating city at sea and walk in the footsteps of 225,000 Midway sailors who served our country. The USS Midway Museum is an unforgettable adventure for the entire family. Guests can spend the day exploring more than 60 exhibits with a collection of 25 restored aircraft. The self-guided audio tour, narrated by Midway sailors, brings the carrier's history to life. Those who dare can "take to the sky" aboard one of three flight simulators.
The Old Point Loma Lighthouse stood watch over the entrance to San Diego Bay for 36 years. At dusk on November 15, 1855, the light keeper climbed the winding stairs and lit the light for the first time. What seemed to be a good location 422 feet above sea level, however, had a serious flaw. Fog and low clouds often obscured the light. On March 23, 1891, the light was extinguished and the keeper moved to a new lighthouse location closer to the water at the tip of the Point. Today, the Old Point Loma Lighthouse still stands watch over San Diego, sentinel to a vanished past. The National Park Service has refurbished the interior to its historic 1880s appearance - a reminder of a bygone era.
This area in the north west part of downtown San Diego is a quieter alternative to the Gaslamp for a place to go in the evening. It's more relaxed and less hectic. You can walk there from the Convention Center or take a rickshaw, and it also has its own trolley station. The area has some great modern architecture and many restaurants and cafes reflecting the Italian heritage. Some recommended restaurants are Bencotto, Buon Appetito, Sogno Di Vino, the Indigo Grill, Napizza, PrepKitchen, Influx, Underbelly, and, further south, the Karl Strauss Brewery. To the east of India Street be sure not to miss the amazing bakery/cafe Extraordinary Desserts in a restored industrial building.
Horton Plaza, officially Westfield Horton Plaza, is a five-level outdoor shopping mall located in downtown San Diego and remarkable for its bright colors, architectural tricks and odd spatial rhythms. It stands on six-and-a-half city blocks and is adjacent to the city's historic Gaslamp Quarter and is currently anchored by Macy's and Nordstrom. It was the first successful downtown retail center since the rise of suburban shopping centers decades earlier.