I’m almost caught up

Well, I just finished my homework that is only a week late and not exactly  what was asked for, but it’s the best I can do for now. It was a styling exercise, and that is my downfall. I seem to have a disconnect when it comes to CSS. For some reason everything doesn’t want to cooperate. I’ll try some code to make a change and it’ll affect something I hadn’t foreseen. I fix that and something else again changes.  Just a teachable moment I guess.It’s been a real eyeopener for me. I wanted to do so much more, like organize the nav bar, fix the header image, things like that, but I just got caught up in the details and ran out of time. I still have another exercise that’s due Monday, and another for Thursday, so there goes the weekend. I really envy some people who seem to be able to build a very functional and  well styles site in an hour! Oh well, have a look and read the article to see why I’m having a hard time.



Build a Web Site in a Week!!!!

Well, that was the assignment and I think I pulled it off. I did the requirements as outlined by Thomas and Mark. I have all the documentation ready and have uploaded to the Web. Problem is, I don’t know what I’m missing! I took a very simplistic route in coding, one HTML file for each segment. Once I got that finished, the fun started. When trying to style the site using CSS, you tend to screw up the functionality (well I do anyway). The mockup  looked fine, but that and the wireframe took me 2 whole days, so that left 2 1/2 to code. Needed some help from all the folks, classmates and profs. included. Got some tips on things like copying  code from Youtube to get a video imbedded. I have to get the colors approved by someone who knows what they’re talking about (I have absolutely no eye for that sort of thing) . Made the site for my daughter Madison, but she’s an earth tone kind of girl and I used something she referred to as piss yellow for the text, which doesn’t sound very attractive. We have to present this afternoon and I can’t wait to hear what these folks have to say. I’m not afraid to do the presentation, it’s the material that worries me. Did a Lightbox effect for the portfolio section and it worked great. Thomas showed me how to cheat a little by copying some necessary code from the website on Lightbox. I will need to get more current pics and videos for the site. The ones I’m using are a couple of years old and there’s nothing from Italy or Vancouver there.

One thing I learned from this is don’t reinvent the wheel. There is plenty of code out there that will help you get the desired effect if you only look for it. just keep plugging away and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Calendar Project

Well, this is the first challenge we’ve really had so  far and I find myself wanting. There are so many things I can’t do because I just don’t know how to do them. I’ve always been a proponent of the KISS principle so I approached this task with that in mind. I asked myself, what is the primary purpose of a calendar. I think it is to tell you the date. The only other thing I use it for is to keep track of my appointments. So I figured if I accomplish these two tasks, I’ve been successful in creating a calendar. Then I looked at some of the other students work and I feel humbled. They are  certainly a lot more creative than I could ever be. It’s one day before I have to present it and there are so many things I want to do to my project, but I don’t think I’m going to have time. I tried to be as efficient with my code as possible, but found it frustrating. Seems most of what I need to know will be taught later. I’m a firm believer in Macros and inline routines and DLL’s but none of that is  available in CSS or HTML. This rant is more self-deprecating than I want it to be, but that’s the way it is at 10:00 on the  night before a deadline. I looked over the requirements and realize I have missed a few things. I can’t figure out how to put a validater on the site and I can’t figure out how to make it responsive  . I added a GIF to August 5th date, but the damn thing won’t stop animating. Of course it’s the same code I used for two other GIF’s and they work fine so I’m baffled. I have to get some sleep, so it’s Ciao for now and hope I can get things fixed in the morning.

And Another Thing

I almost forgot that insidious little piece of legislation that was slipped into the budget, very unobtrusively that states if any bank in Canada gets into financial  distress, they can take your deposits, your money, and bail themselves out with no reparation to you. The same as what happened in Greece when they closed the banks and shut off ATM’s , cancelled credit and debit cards and left people stranded all over the world. I wonder if that’s a harbinger of things to come in Justin’s “sunny ways”.

Right Wing Nut Job, That’s Me

Well, I know we’re supposed to be posting about school and what we’re doing here,but I have to digress somewhat. I have been pondering out latest federal budget and have quite a few concerns. First of all, let me say that, unlike a lot of students, I am a taxpayer. Have been ever since my first  full time job in 1969. I’ve seen a lot of strange things come out of Ottawa, and Toronto, and some other capitols as well. they never cease to amaze me at how creative they can be. Not so much with their policies, but with their spin on it. Did you know that governments create jobs! Other than Civil Service, which I have to remind you, creates ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, they don’t in any way contribute to the economic welfare of the country. They have two prime responsibilities: distribute funds they collect from us and provide protection for their citizens.

So, lets look at what Morneau and Trudeau have done for us lately. The four main broken promises aren’t even that catastrophic. $10b deficit, balanced budget in 4 years, income tax cut for small business and increases to help youth employment. All these they promised in the election and none were delivered. Not surprising, the first two, anybody that can do math knew that wasn’t happening, the second two tick me off somewhat. Small business is responsible for 80% of new job creation in this country and more young people are what they are looking for. They knew that, but ignored it. I’m walking around the halls of Humber and see the excitement in the students eyes. Can’t help but feel sorry for them when they realize their beloved rock star has let them down.

So what did he deliver. Let’s see, increased EI to 70 weeks and made it easier to qualify. Yeah, that’s really an incentive to get back to work. Should help the 14% unemployed in NFLD/Lab. Or his friends in Quebec. Might even help the people that didn’t vote for him in Alberta, but he didn’t cut transfer payments, so they are still paying billions to support the rest of welfare Canada. And the patch will rebound, always does.

Increased the amount of money you can collect for having kids. That’s a good thing for our aging population. Except, incentive to have children isn’t exactly an incentive to work and contribute. I have to look at that Syrian “refugee” family that celebrated the birth of their child in January. Their 11th. That means they will get around $60k a year in child benefits, plus their welfare (sorry I mean Social Assistance) plus any ODSP as soon as they figure that little cash cow out, plus if they bring their aged parents over under Family Reunification, they’ll get OAS, and welfare as well. They are living rent free in a “spacious” home in Mississauga and I’m not quite sure how long that is for, but I can’t see them being kicked out. This man is uneducated, unskilled, can’t speak either official language. How can he possibly get employment to support that lifestyle?

$675M to the CBC. Don’t even get me started. If you’re in the industry, you know exactly what I mean.

Indigenous people, yeah that poor underprivileged class that are so hard done by. Lets pour more money at them. After all, they do so well with what we give them already, don’t they? In the business world, the real world, we have a saying  “You can’t solve a Management Problem with a Financial Solution”. We should be going into these reserves with construction crews and building houses water plants, schools even churches for these people, not expecting them to do it.. They have proven to be unable, or unwilling to manage themselves. Lets stop being so sensitive that we can’t address the elephant in the room. I know this isn’t going to go over well, but those same construction crews might just locate some of those missing Aboriginal women that seem to be the centre of focus right now. After all, the last report from the RCMP said 70% of those missing women met their fate at the hands of Aboriginal men, but we can’t say what everyone who lives near a reserve knows.

So lets talk about infrastructure. Always been fascinated with that word. Especially when people like  Wynne and Trudeau use it. Lets focus on Toronto. I live near there and it is our largest city. When Wynne talks about infrastructure, she means the roads, transit and services provided for the people there. She say’s it’s crumbling. I agree, about the roads anyway. They need to be repaired. Problem is, they can’t build any new ones. There is no plan to decrease the gridlock that is rush hour in Toronto. Their only idea is to increase bike lanes, decrease car traffic and increase public transportation. Problem is, nobody can afford to live in Toronto to use public transit. They must commute, by car, to get to their place of employment.So whats happening is companies are moving out of Toronto, to the burbs, so they can attract employees who don’t have to commute. Fixing the infrastructure won’t solve the problem. It only repairs what is already there. No new jobs, no new revenue in the form of taxes, no help at all. But Kathleen Wynne already knows that. She will take whatever money Trudeau gives her and put it in general revenues, the same as  she did with the money earmarked for healthcare, to pay for her massive debt and her 53% civil service payroll. After all, there are 1.2m (not counting teachers) civil servants in Ontario and only 4m people voted last election. Do the math.

Wow, it’s 8:00 am Easter Sunday morning and I should really go to confession after this rant. I can’t really, I’m a disaffected Catholic who hasn’t been to church, except for my Mom’s funeral, in over 40 years. Had a bad experience with something called the Catholic Tribunal when I was young and haven’t had any faith since. But that’s a story for another blog.

Ciao, and Happy Easter.

Photoshop, Illustrator,,,,,ARRRRGH

I don’t know what is more frustrating, not knowing the product or realizing that everyone else in the class does. I feel just like Vince Vaughn from The Internship. You know the one where he and Owen Wilson are older guys who get an intern job at Google. All the young nerds around them know everything and all they have is life experience. I’ve negotiated $50 million  service contracts with a top FI  in Canada, and I can’t figure out how to make an anchor point in Illustrator. This is the most humbling experience I’ve had to date. Through my 40 year career in technology, the one hard and fast rule I lived by is ” you don’t have to know everything, you just have to know someone who does”. It’s kinda like “you don’t have to own a pickup truck, just have a friend who does”. Same principle and it’s a lesson I hope I can pass on to my young compatriots. There’s things they can learn about living from me, but I hope to pick their brains a lot more than the other way around. If my 26 year old daughter taught me anything, it’s not to try  and teach a young pup a new trick. School of Hard Knocks is the best educational environment that the Millennials can have.

Now I’m back at the exercise that I thought I had finished 0n Sunday, only to read the requirements and realize I left out a bunch of stuff. Oh well, coding is my life (at least for now)!.



Another Week gone forever

Didn’t it just fly by? Have been to embroiled in coding  exercises to even notice. It was St Paddy’s Day yesterday and one of our younger compliment couldn’t get out of bed today. My father only ever gave me 2 pieces of advice :”Never miss a day’s’ work because you’re hungover, and never let your wife know you’re hungover”. That’s kind of how I’ve lived my life. But  mostly I try not to get hungover!

Have a real bit of homework this weekend that should take me a while. Have to code a  page that has a bunch of CSS positioning in it. Due on Tuesday, so I actually have lots of time.  See you next week.