Long time no blog, again.

There’s simply no exciting things for me over this long period after returning from Germany. Ah, yes, except one thing: I’m now engaged, after 5 years:)

I’m back to Mylyn , and am developing the habit relying on it to organize my daily work. My company hosts an internal portal site using Share Point. Well, I’d say that I would like to use it if I’m someone who does not need to use anything other than the Microsoft Office suite, but I’m a poor coder, which means I don’t make a living using Microsoft Office but my IDE. I’ve been using Eclipse for 5 years also, meaning that I already had it in my last computer when I met my girlfriend (who has just been promoted lol). I’d tried other alternatives and eclipse still remains to be the best choice for me ever. I like the whole ecosystem built on the eclipse platform; there are not only plug-ins for developers, but a lot of decent desktop/RIA applications, either public available or proprietary.

I should suggest my friends and colleagues to give Mylyn a try. It really helps. And I’m also trying Tasktop Pro for Eclipse , which is available as a 30-day free trial and is at the price of 99.00 USD or 149.00 USD depending on the type of the license. There are simply more features in this Pro edition, such as integrations with Outlook, Gmail and Google Calendar, making them task repositories. I think I’ll buy one; the price is reasonable and it worths. One thing to mention is that seems key developers of the Mylyn project also work for Tasktop; I often see them in the Mylyn newsgroup. To me, Mylyn is the first Eclipse plug-in offered by eclipse.org that is not about development but is for development.

Well, and I tried developing a connector for TeamTrack, which is used by my company for tracking defects and something else. Having been googling and reading for 2 hours, I finally found the web service APIs that TeamTrack provides, yet I don’t think the operations it exposes can meet the need to build a complete connector. And also it seems one even needs to be familiar with the database tables to perform queries via TeamTrack’s web service! I currently have no technical information available so finally I decided to give up making such a connector, but to use the generic web connector to parse HTML pages with regular expressions… This is only one of the basic differences between proprietary products and their open source alternatives.

Moreover, there’s a bug with the Mylyn generic web connector and it fails to authenticate via HTTP Basic authentication method, whoa. It’s said to be a code migration/integration problem so I guess it’s easy to deal with, though.

Honestly, Office 2007 is good; I can use Visual Studio 2008 with VSTO to make a few simple add-ons for my Outlook. I’d agree there’s more value out of Microsoft’s products, because everyone can see that Microsoft’s products are engineered to be able to work with each other; this is something other companies need some years to develop.