Goodbye, 3i

I had tweeted these 2 simple sentences, the former about 3 months ago, the latter yesterday. Yep, after nearly 4 years, I’m moving away from 3i. It’s been an interesting experience – I’ve ranted and raved about my journeys on twitter, and often blogged about my experiences and misadventures in 3i ( if you have same free time, go read through the archives – good stories there). In these past (almost-)4 years, I started out as a trainee, creating patches & shipments, moved onto to GUI development using Oracle forms, switched over to backend stored procedures development using PL/SQL. Then came the big challenges – client interaction & data migration. Moving data from a 30-year old legacy system is no easy task, and with the constraints & adherence to business logic to be followed – was no doubt, the most challenging task that I had undertaken. Big props to all my colleagues, team mates, peers who helped me along and encouraged and motivated me. Also, a special Thank You to the Ruby gang.

So what’s next? I will be moving over to Logica, starting Monday. I’ll still be in Chennai, though.  Here’s for the new challenge ahead.

Installing the Kingston v100 SSDNow 128GB SSD on a HP Envy 14

Quite some time back Kingston was kind enough to send me their v100 128GB SSD for review. Due to my travel back to India, I had to stall the SSD shipment since I wouldn’t in the US by the time I would have received it. Once back here, I had to further delay since I had planned to take a short week-long vacation to Mangalore.

While the SSD was in transit, I started researching on how would I be able to fit the SSD into my laptop, with the SSD as the primary drive and the existing Seagate Momentus 7200rpm hard drive as the secondary drive. Digging up the Envy 14 manual, I was under the impression that having both drives would be possible.

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Configure Airtel GPRS / Mobile Office for Android

Short, quick post: I’d purchased a Nexus S recently, and once I got back to India, I had to re-activate my connection again.

Unlike the iPhone, however, my Android was unable to pick up the settings automatically & I had to enter them manually. To do this, head over to Settings -> Wireless & Networks -> Mobile Networks -> Access Point names. Tap on the options button -> New APN & enter the  settings as per your plan, as  mentioned in my previous post comparing various Airtel GPRS plans.

To recap:

Name: Enter a name to identify

APN/Address/Access point: for Airtel Mobile Office.

That’s it. Restart your phone(if required) and you should be able to start browsing.

Of Thanksgiving Trip, Gadget Overloads, Cancelled Christmas Trip & Back To India

I’ve been absent in posting here – more because there’s hardly anything interesting going on. Well, there’s laziness as well. So here’s a recap.


For the past couple of months, my colleague had returned back to India, which meant me having no company. With Thanksgiving around the corner, I decided to pay a trip to my cousin sis’ place in Allen, TX. With no car with me & bus service from Austin to Allen non-existent – I decided to rent a car from Enterprise.

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Dream Jobs That You're Glad You Didn't Pursue (AKA: How "Enterprise" Applications Work)

The day finally came to launch the product but there was no fanfare. No big payoff. No feeling of fulfillment. It was merely a quiet launch with one beta customer. You didn’t know what to do with yourself so you sat there all day refreshing a view on the database to spy on what they were doing. Answer: not much. The things they did do, they did wrong. They found bugs. They found ways to circumvent all of your carefully constructed system rules and validations. Not because they were master hackers or brilliant technicians…but because they were just stupid. They clicked on things they shouldn’t click on. They typed things in that they shouldn’t type in. They didn’t read simple instructions. They didn’t listen in training. They were personally insulting you by being terrible at using your software.

In a field labeled “Enter the number of specimens:” they typed “five specimens.”

In a field labeled “Social Security Number:” they typed “he doesn’t have one because he is an illegal.”

Instead of using the button labeled “Create New Patient Record:” they kept changing the information in a single patient record over and over and saving it.

Then the calls came in from the sales team demanding to know why the system was broken and why you had taken so long to develop something that clearly didn’t work.

There was nothing you could do but respond to the bug reports and issue system patches that added no value other than handholding people through the software. You wondered aloud how these people had managed to survive this long without drinking bleach by accident.

via Timothy McSweeney’s Internet Tendency: Dream Jobs That You’re Glad You Didn’t Pursue..

Déjà vu all over. Must read.

Making Oracle Forms Use JRE instead of Jinitiator

By default, Oracle Forms Application Server serves Oracle Forms applications using the built-in Jinitiator JVM. While JVM works swell with cutting edge browsers1 it pretty much crashes most of the other browsers2 and doesn’t work at all in Chrome. There are workarounds but the workarounds do not play well while working with multiple tabs.

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  1. IE6 []
  2. Firefox, IE7+ []

Batch file to delete files older than x days

At work, I have bunch of batch files which take an export from Oracle database, compress them and move them to their respective folders. In addition to this, the scripts also copy the Oracle forms executibles (“fmx”), reports (“rdf”) and other miscellaneous files to the backup locations and these are further compressed. The compressed files are then transferred over to the SAN.

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