May 2015 Blog Posts
Azure + Hadoop = Clumsy and Expensive?

So, I decided to teach myself a little bit about Hadoop and running it on Azure, using some ‘hello world’ code found here and here, just a kick the tires kind of thing.

The first thing I noticed was how difficult it was to do something this basic.  Configuring accounts and objects and tying them together took quite a bit of time (the username is ‘admin’ BTW, this isn’t obvious anywhere), really more complicated than it really should be.

It also didn’t work, not quite.  The Hive queries wouldn’t work as is, and it isn’t idempotent, so there was a lot of back and forth, until I finally quit, after maybe an hour.

Then, the next day, I looked in my portal and discovered that I had been billed $35 for 370 hours worth of HDInsight work.  Huh?  WTF?

I have no idea how, what, or why, but I really didn’t do much, and certainly not enough to warrant those numbers, so as often happens when you build something in Azure and discover the ‘hidden’ charges that rack up quickly, I just deleted objects.  I’ve never really had this issue with Amazon stuff.

YMMV, but this worries me about the Windows 10 IoT stuff I am piloting.

posted @ Friday, May 29, 2015 10:00 AM | Feedback (0)
Windows Mobile 10080 – A hot mess

So, I rolled back to Windows 8.1 using the Nokia Recovery Tool, as the latest Windows Mobile build is actually worse than the previous one.

It did add Office.  That was nice.  Kind of. 

The continual inability of it to ‘acquire licenses’ while trying to update things like the MSN apps meant that the start screen was usually unavailable.

But what really made it unusable to me was how the continued inaccuracies in touch on the Lumia 1520 meant that in OneNote, it couldn’t figure out how to place the cursor, often causing it to select an entire block of text.  Which on at least one occasion caused it to delete.  Which you can’t undo, because OneNote doesn’t have an undo.

That just won’t do.

So, waiting for the next build to have a usable start screen, which I hope is soon as the look of the UI itself is pretty fantastic.  The new start screen, once configured, and for the 10% of the time it actually would display, was phenomenal.

posted @ Sunday, May 17, 2015 11:03 PM | Feedback (0)
Windows 10 Mobile 10080 - Blank Start Screen

So, it took me a while to figure this one out.... I installed the latest windows mobile release, everything was fine (well, the install was a bit messy but whatever), started installing apps and then....nothing would show on the start screen. You could show the notification settings, but no apps.

I could hack around by launching Cortana and it would launch some apps that way, but not others. What is going on is that the store (not store beta, the original) is still downloading apps. If it stalls, the start screen will come back for a bit. Apparently, it needs to finish installing everything that is queued up (which for me requires a WiFi connection, I'm away from home so don't have one at the moment) for the start screen to come back for good.

Weird bug, but there you go.

posted @ Friday, May 15, 2015 3:58 PM | Feedback (0)
Wittgenstein on Family Resemblance, or why I don’t like base classes

This is largely a through-away notion, but there is a point to it.

Wittgenstein talks about something called ‘family resemblance.’  Very, very generally speaking, we talk about things as being similar, as fitting within a common ‘concept’, but they don’t share a single defining feature.  The stock example is that of a game.  Hockey is a game.  Tiddlywinks is also a game.  You cannot define a common defining feature.

Sometimes, when talking about code, there are people who want to do everything in terms of base classes and subclasses.  This is natural and understandable, but there are many times when it is mistaken.  Just create separate classes.

posted @ Sunday, May 10, 2015 12:23 PM | Feedback (0)