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A Periodic (P)review Of Leaping Forward

By: Johan

Wednesday, January 26

Open Source - You CAN Do That!

Even after spending 13.5 hours at the office today coding my way through chunks of PHP I am still well exited about today's Open Source software. You might have to tweak things more to get it to do exactly what you want it to do but the end result beats just about anything else on the market.

Take the Mozilla FireFox web browser for instance. Fantastic out of the box but adding a handful of extensions really makes a differenc eto your online life. Tabbed browsing saves on all the clutter, the solid code base saves on all the trojans and other shite, about:config gives you direct access to the core and nifty extensions like Weather Forecast, GoogleBar, WebDeveloper and FoxyTunes to control your favourite media player just make browsing wunderbar. No reason to ever go back that other browser. Did I mention it's free (and legal) to download?

Another Open Source joint development software package I've started working with recently is osCommerce. It's possibilities are just endless. The core installation can run any type of online shop but it's only when you start installing Contributions or hacking your own path through the code that you really start enjoying it. Makes you wonder why you've been paying so much money for that very restrictive 3d party e-commerce solution. Apache, Zend (PHP), MySQL, Linux and the osCommerce Open Source community have created a mighyt fast, ever expandable super car and put me in the driving seat. Fantastic! 200 Mph on Innovation Boulevard.

It's all very exciting stuff but I do feel like my days as a die-hard coder geek are numbered. Bill Gates doesn't code himself anymore either. And when I see myself post things like "Coop IBLs without rel=nofollow marginally improve PR but really boost SERPs in the SEs" in the Digital Point Forums I sometimes scratch my head and wonder what my girlfriend would think of me writing such seemingly meaningless crap. Building my own ventures has begun. ..

A few great quotes from the osCommerce website:
tell me and I'll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I'll understand
logic will get you from A to B - imagination will take you anywhere
With Open Source software, you CAN do that!

Sunday, January 23

So this is what everybody is on about...

A well-known but often forgotten business principle is to "Be first or be different".
This blog is probably the five millionth-ish blog out there in the World Wide Wild so I'm most defintely not first. Will this particular blog be different though?

Yes and no.

Functionality wise I will be singing from the exact same hymn sheet. I chose Blogger as my blogging solution simply because it's the only one I knew the URL of off the top of my head. Once I get the hang of it and know whether I like this medium of expressing myself or not, I will probably look out for an Open Source solution like easymoblog.org .

The principle will also be pretty much the same as my millions of predecessors; I'll post whatever I feel like, whenever I feel like.

It will be different though in the way that no two individuals are the same. So based on that precept, I should have something original to say to you all.

To give some direction to my future posts I decided on a title and subtitle for my blog.


The title should be fairly self-explanatory. Terpstra is my surname, extravaganza means:

1) An elaborate, spectacular entertainment or display.
2) A composition marked by freedom and diversity of form, often with burlesque elements and satirical or parodic intent.

I had to look up 'burlesque' myself and its meaning might indeed be an indicator of what to expect here at times:

1) A literary or dramatic work that ridicules a subject either by presenting a solemn subject in an undignified style or an inconsequential subject in a dignified style.
2) A ludicrous or mocking imitation; a travesty.
3) A variety show characterized by broad ribald comedy, dancing, and striptease.

Not sure on the striptease part though ;) (I can think of at least one under-aged potential reader of my blog so I shall endeavour to keep this a descent place for all.)

A Periodic (P)review Of Leaping Forward

Without limiting myself to time frames or post counts, I shall be reflecting upon whatever crosses my path. That path is being carved out in a progressive manner; geometrically instead of arithmetically, leaps instead of steps - certainly no half measures. One day you might find a review of what has already happened before, but I predict most will be about what happens now or is about to happen in the not-so-distant future. I was taught not to spend time on things you can't change; hence the focus on the way forward. The internet is now and that's exactly what I like about it.

Readers Are Leaders so be my guest and read my blog as often as you like. Readers wouldn't be leaders if it wasn't for the stimulating and interesting work they read so I'll make sure there is a lesson to be learned in every blog post starting today, even if it's just a wise quote or enlightening rhetorical question.