Saturday, June 28, 2008

Is Iona finally in the deadpool?

Iona Technologies, a company that caused me a lot of pain with their complex and buggy CORBA products, was sold a few days ago for just $162 million dollars - or $4 a share, down from $98 a share at the dot com hight in 2000.

Iona was an early implementer of CORBA in both the C++ and Java spaces with their Orbix product. Typical of early implementations of new technologies they did proprietary extensions to fill obvious gaps in the CORBA specs, and just as typical of early implementors they got lazy and failed to keep up with cleaner ways of doing things as the specs evolved. gggrrrr. Orbix became one of those license fee legacy cash cows.

I got some perverse enjoyment replacing Orbix with the open source omniORB (solid as a rock!) whenever I had the chance. Its poor performance inspired a colleague and myself to begin writing a "real-time" ORB, but we never finished the product.

On a scary note I mentioned the Iona acquisition to a mid-level developer colleague of mine and he asked "What is CORBA?". I'm getting to old for this sh... shell scripting.

Although Iona is no more I'm sure Orbix will live on in legacy systems for a while. We'll meet again :)

UK students "outsource" their IT coursework to India

Students who don't want to do their assignments have traditionally ask a friend or tried to borrow a copy from someone in previous years. Now they have another option - outsource the assignment to India! :

"A-level and university pupils are logging onto computer coding websites and farming out their work to foreign IT graduates...

The majority of these students are studying an IT-related course and about one third are from the UK.

Students contract their work to the lowest bidder, with prices ranging from £5 for simple undergraduate coursework, to £100 for postgraduate dissertations...

Lancaster and fellow City lecturer Robert Clarke are calling on the government to set up a national database of university assignments so they can be matched against contract requests on coding websites and traced back to students."

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Yahoo! Rezinr - a Do-It-Yourself Resignation Letter

Things are looking pretty grim at Yahoo! with a large number of executives resigning. To help Yahoo! employees some kind sole has created a tool to help you write a resignation letter!

Never mind the email Spam, watch out for the SPIT (SPam over Internet Telephony)

I don't know why it hadn't occurred to me before, particularly since I got rid of my home phone a few years ago in favor of a mobile phone for quick calls and a VoIP solution (Skype, Yahoo! Voice, etc) for longer calls, but I can't wait for spam to interrupt one of my VoIP calls.

Semi-related: DIY Wiretapping (including recording VoIP calls).