Category Archives: Softwares

Don’t put your resume ahead of the requirements

97 Things Every Software Architect Should Know – 1/97

As engineers we sometimes recommend technologies, methodologies and approaches for solving problems because deep down we want to have these on our resume and not because they are the best solution for the problem. Such decisions very rarely result in happy outcomes.

The best thing for your career is a long string of happy customers eager to recommend you because you did the right thing by them and for the project. This goodwill will serve you orders of magnitude better than the latest shiny object in the latest shiny language or the latest shiny paradigm. While it is important, even critical, to stay abreast of the latest trends and technologies this should never happen at the cost of the customer. It‘s important to remember that you have a fiduciary duty. As an architect you have been entrusted with the well-being of your organization and its expected that you will avoid all conflicts of interest and give the organization your undivided loyalty. If the project isn’t cutting edge or challenging enough for your current career needs then find one that is.

If you can’t do that and you are forced to be in such a project, then you and everyone else will be happier using the right technology for the customer rather than for your resume. It‘s often difficult to resist utilizing a solution that is new and cool, even when it‘s inappropriate for the current situation.

With the right solution, the project will have a happier team, a happier customer and overall far less stress. This will often give you time to go deeper into the existing older technology or to learn the new stuff on your own time. Or to go take that painting class you always wanted to do. Your family will love you for it, too – they’ll notice the difference when you get home.

Overall always put the customer’s long-term needs ahead of your own short term needs and you won’t go wrong.

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Mozilla’s Memory Issue solved

Mozilla’s 6-week release cycle is a bold
new step that ensures frequent release of updates, and users will now
get the new features faster than ever. The latest stable release of
Firefox is a big leap forward for Mozilla as it solves the oldest,
biggest and probably one of the most irritating  of bugs in the browser,
the memory bug.
As posted on Mozilla’s support forum Mozillazine,
“Firefox caches objects for future use. In addition, memory becomes
fragmented as memory is repeatedly allocated and de-allocated. This
general increase is normal.[1]” In other words, Firefox can’t efficiently return the memory it allocates when it’s no longer needed by it.
Those who keep 10/15+ tabs open at the
same time will know how irritating it gets when the system memory gets
sloppy. Stream two videos at the same time on youtube while checking
updates on Facebook or browsing picture galleries, and everything
freezes up. Browser crashes and unresponsive video drivers were a common
occurence in Firefox 5 and older. There were hacks in the about:config
page to solve this issue but they weren’t guaranteed to work, definitely
not up to the level we needed it to work. They weren’t much help to me
at least.
Firefox 5 was an even bigger memory hog than the previous releases. Even the Memoryfox Addon (here) couldn’t do much. (Firefox 6 had buttons added in the about:memory page to do the memory flushing.)
But Firefox developers have finally
taken the matter seriously and Mozilla claims that in Firefox 7 and
onwards the memory leakage problem will  be solved.
I’ve been using the browser (Firefox 7)
for a week now and it does feel faster than Firefox 5 or 6.  Memory
leakage, not gone but considerably reduced as memory usage by Firefox 7
is much less after long use compared to Firefox 5. Firefox 8, which is
still in beta, doesn’t add anything more to memory management compared
to Firefox 7, but then again, it has more than a month left for its
scheduled release.
Also, at the time of writing of this
article, both the Aurora and the Nightly builds of Firefox, feel a lot
faster. Try pages with lots of graphics, pictures, videos and lots of
different colors, open on 10 or more tabs, and it still has no problems
while switching between tabs. Personally I’ve had no problems switching
between 20 tabs, most of them full of pictures, while logged on to all
three of Facebook, twitter and google+ (doing all this would either
cause your display to freeze or your browser to crash on Firefox 5).
Many users have said that Firefox 7 is just as good with 40+ tabs as
well.
With the developments that we see in these beta releases and
considering the all that time still left for the final release of
Firefox 8, 9 and 10 (For now these are the beta, aurora and nightly
builds until their stable versions are out. You can download them from
from here and here), it is certain that these new versions do have something to offer. You can learn more about these builds here.
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