Puakma: Under the hood

I'm Brendon Upson, jack-of-all-trades, master of one or two. I'm talking about life running a small ISV tackling business issues and leaping technology hurdles in a single bound.

webWise Network Consultants is based in Sydney, Australia and develops the groundbreaking Tornado Server technology.


Filed under: by Brendon Upson on 2005-10-14

We upgraded a customer's Tornado servers today to the new 3.22 release. These machines power a mine management system we wrote and get a reasonable pounding each day, 7 days a week (mines never sleep!). I was most pleased when I saw the shutdown message at each site:

PUAKMA Shutdown (Uptime: 44d 7h 18m 22s)


PUAKMA Shutdown (Uptime: 27d 9h 19m 47s)

Total outage for each site was around 15 seconds and performed from 1,500km away. The whole upgrade was performed using only a web browser. 

I'm still amazed at the number of consultants that tell their customers they should really be reboot servers weekly. One customer with a Sunfire E15K (read HUGE machine with 106 CPUs) was recommended by an IBM consultant to restart it each sunday! Rebooting machines is a sign of poorly written software.

Eeeeek! I'm a luddite!

Filed under: by Brendon Upson on 2005-10-14

Yesterday I bit the bullet and ordered a data projector. I'd got by without one until recently but with the falling prices and increased need I decided it was time to procure.

Ten years ago I would have considered myself a technical guy. I knew all the mobile phone models by heart (amongst other trivial technical matters). Today I'd be flat out naming even 5 mobile phone manufacturers. In a very short space of time I have become my mother. [Insert cold shiver here] [luddites]

Yesterday, trying to decide which was the best projector for me was tough. Small and light enough to lug out to customers, bright enough because I don't know what their walls are like, and has to fit the budget.

DLP or LCD? I had picked out an inexpensive NEC that I had all but made up my mind on - until I went to see it in action. It was like looking through dirty venetian blinds. Next to it was a tiny HP DLP projector worth a cool 4K. Brilliant picture but well outside the budget. Hmmm. Spring for the few hunderd extra bucks methinks and definitely look for a DLP.

After about four hours of checking over ANSI Lumens, contrast ratios, price, weight, size, bulb life and replacement bulb costs, I settled on the Toshiba TDP-S25. How any "Average Joe" can wade through all this techno-babble and make an informed decision is beyond me. I suspect a sale is usually preceded with a "Oooooooh that one looks pretty!".

After ringing a few different people (thanks guys!) I realised the margin in these things is waaaaaaay slim. Glad I'm not a hardware guy.

So, the purchase is made and I'm waiting by the front door for the delivery guy :-)