User Group Newsletter Archive
Newsletter from O'Reilly UG Program - 09/14/2006
This newsletter is available for use by members of the O'Reilly User Group Program.
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News From O'Reilly & Beyond
***CRAFT on Newsstands October 17
From the team who brought you MAKE, CRAFT is the first project-based
magazine dedicated to the renaissance that is occurring within the world
of crafts. Celebrating the DIY spirit, Craft's goal is to unite,
inspire, inform, and entertain a growing community of highly imaginative
people who are transforming traditional art and crafts with
unconventional, unexpected and even renegade techniques, materials, and
tools; resourceful spirits who undertake amazing crafting projects in
their homes and communities. We call them "Makers."
We anticipate a very quick sellout (as was the case with the inaugural
issue of MAKE). Avoid the crushing disappointment of an empty newsstand,
and reserve a copy today by subscribing with this special UG discount
***O'Reilly Media Announces Co-Publishing Agreement with Adobe Systems
We just announced the Adobe Developer Library, a new publishing imprint
in partnership with Adobe Systems, designed to meet the rising demand
among developers for tools and resources to help create the next
generation of rich internet applications. Adobe and O'Reilly have
entered into an agreement to co-publish and co-brand books and online
learning resources for developers creating applications with
technologies such as Adobe Flex, ActionScript, and Adobe Flash and Flash
Video. Stay tuned for more information.
***Work for O'Reilly
We have immediate openings for the following:
-Digital Content Specialist
-Senior Software Engineer
-Strategic Sales Executive
For more information and more job openings, go to:
***User Group Members receive a special 30% discount on
O'Reilly Learning Courses
As an O'Reilly User Group member, you save on all the courses in
the following University of Illinois Certificate Series:
-Linux/Unix System Administration
-Open Source Programming
To redeem, use Promotion Code "ORALL1," good for a 30% discount,
in Step #3 of the enrollment process. Each course comes with a free
O'Reilly book and a 7-day money-back guarantee. Register online:
***Unit Testing Your Documentation
It's fairly easy to prevent errors in code from occurring and
reoccurring; unit tests are an effective strategy to prevent
regressions. But what about the example code in your documentation?
Errors there can frustrate and thwart readers and learners. Fortunately,
it's possible to test your documentation almost as effectively. Leonard
Richardson, coauthor of the "Ruby Cookbook," demonstrates how he kept his
code examples correct.
Munging text is familiar to agile language programmers. It's very
straightforward, right? Text comes in, text changes, and text goes out.
Yet in a multi-OS world with networks, internationalization, and
character sets, is text really that simple? Xavier Noria delves into how
computers handle text to explain the newline problem and how to work
with it in agile languages.
***Digital Media Insider Podcast: Playing with Audio Plugins
Listen as songwriter and Pro Tools guru Gina Fant-Saez transforms a
dust-dry vocal into a gorgeous soundscape by chaining four cool effect
plugins, and then builds a song from scratch using only virtual
***George Jardine Discusses the Adobe Lightroom Adventure
George Jardine, pro shooter and Adobe Lightroom Evangelist, was part of
the Lightroom Adventure team that traveled to Iceland during the summer
of 2006. In this interview by fellow Adventurer Derrick Story, George
talks about working with other world class photographers on location and
the development of Adobe Lightroom... and how the two forces came
together in Iceland.
***Image Sharpening With Photoshop CS2
Having trouble applying Photoshop's Unsharp Mask filter to your
creations? Using the Unsharp Mask can be tricky business but, as author
Corrie explains, some good technique, a little patience, and an artistic
eye is all you need to sharpen your images to a professional standard.
***A Briefing on Synching
The idea behind synchronizing, or synching, is simple: take information
you collect on one device, like the contact lists you keep on your
laptop, and combine it with similar information on other devices so that
the two sets of information match. Sounds easy enough, but there are a
few tricks to understand. In this "Take Control" excerpt, Michael Cohen
provides an informative overview for getting your info in sync.
***Unify and Synchronize Your iTunes Libraries
Last June, David Miller published an article that explained how to
synchronize playlists on iTunes. Today, Matthew Russell extends this
idea by investigating and presenting three different ways to synchronize
the actual contents of your iTunes music libraries when they are
scattered across multiple machines. Then in the second half of the
article, Matthew lays the foundation for a custom Python script that you
can extend across multiple platforms and in various other ways.
***How to Remove Startup Programs
Got a PC that takes a week and a day to boot up? Most likely, it's
filled with programs that start at bootup--programs you don't need.
Mitch Tulloch shows you all the secrets of how to ferret out and remove
these time and resource wasters.
***Building Photo Uploaders with XAML
Who says Windows can't play nice with open source applications? Jack
Herrington uses the XAML technology on Windows Vista to create a
visually appealing and user-friendly image uploading application for
getting pictures into a PHP web application.
***Separation of Concerns in Web Service Implementations
The principle of "separation of concerns" is much repeated in SOA
circles... so why are transactional integrity, security, and business
logic so often intermingled in SOA implementations? In this article,
Tieu Luu shows how to use Spring to separate out security concerns in an
Axis-based web service.
***How to Publish Multiple Websites Using a Single Tomcat Web
While the idea of mapping several names onto one Apache instance with
VirtualHost directives is well known, what do you do when you're serving
web apps with Tomcat? Satya Komatineni has both the code and the configs
that you'll need to make this work.
***Batch Updates with PL/pgSQL
Loops are slow, algorithmically speaking. Every time you find yourself
looping over data, you have a process that, at best, scales linearly
with the number of items to process. SQL gives you options to perform
multiple updates at once; David Wheeler demonstrates how to make them
work with PL/pgSQL.
***Visualizing Database Information with Tableau
Although there are several tools available to help users efficiently and
easily create pivot tables or cross-tabulations, being able to visualize
the cross-tabulations in real time is much more useful. Ben Lorica and
the O'Reilly Research team recently tried a visual analysis and
reporting tool called Tableau. It worked well for them; might it work in
your data warehouse?
***MAKE Japan Now Available
MAKE is coming to Japan! It will share content from the pages of MAKE,
but will be specifically for Japan.
You can download a sample MAKE 01 (Japanese PDF) here:
***Weekend Projects: Batometer Instructions
For More MAKE Projects and info, go to:
***Barbara Brundage discusses "Photoshop Elements 5: The Missing Manual"
In this podcast, O'Reilly Media's Sara Peyton interviews Barbara
Brundage. Barbara's an extraordinary harpist who has performed for
dignitaries and celebrities around the world including Margaret
Thatcher, Tom Cruise, the Clintons, and Isaac Stern. She's also the
go-to expert when it comes to using Photoshop Elements. Her brand new
book, "Photoshop Elements 5: The Missing Manual" is all about the
just-announced version of Elements. And she's going to talk to us about
the cool new tools for digital photographers and scrapbookers in this
Releasing early and often. Mark Lucovsky contrasts his experience at
Microsoft and at Google. Simon Phipps says that "lock in is the new lock
out" and we preview Euro OSCON. Six Apart's Anil Dash has a stack of
services you might use to build your applications and Damian Conway
pokes fun at the world of Web 2.0 businesses. (DTF 09-11-2006: 26
minutes 45 seconds)
***Flex 2: Rich Internet Applications in a Flash
Take your interactive web apps to the next level with Adobe's Flex
2--it's fast, fashionable, and free! Join Josh as he walks through the
process of developing a simple Flash project that shows just how easy it
is to build cross-platform web apps with Flex 2.
***Advanced Accessibility Techniques
If you think the W3C guidelines are your ticket to an accessible site,
think again! While the W3C guidelines are important, if you want your
web site to be truly accessible, you'll need to venture beyond these
guidelines. Trenton explains all in this hands-on technical tour.
Until next time--
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