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About Alastair Revell
Alastair Revell is the Managing Consultant of Revell Research Systems, a Management and Technology Consulting Practice based at Exeter in the United Kingdom.
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The material published in this web log is for general purposes only. It does not constitute nor is it intended to represent professional advice. You should always seek specific professional advice in relation to particular issues. The information in this web log is provided "as is" with no warranties and confers no rights. The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions.

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Review Entries for Day Thursday, January 18, 2007

I have been porting our code library to the .NET Framework 2.0 and have been using the new generics feature in many places to improve the code.

I've generally been impressed by the functionality offered by generics, but was a little disillusioned when I realised that they would be of little or no use in refactoring our matrix and vector maths libraries.

Perhaps, as a graduate mathematician, I had been more excited than most by the prospect of being able to write generic matrix and vector classes that could be instantiated just as easily on a built-in Double type as a custom Complex number type.

However, the gradual realisation dawned that the built-in types in the .NET Framework don't share any common numeric ancestor type and don't implement a common interface such as IArithmetic that might be used to constrain the generic matrix and vector classes to being instantiated ONLY over numeric types.

Rüdiger Klaehn, a German freelance programmer, has proposed that Microsoft should augment the basic numeric types in the .NET Framework with an IArithmetic interface that would define the basic arithmetic operators on these types. This would allow generic types to be defined over types that guarantee this interface, allowing such classes as a matrix or vector to be built that can be constrained to types that support basic arithmetic.

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 1:05:42 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Comments [0] Coding | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Monday, January 08, 2007

It seems that Microsoft has no intention of being caught with an entrenched user base of Windows 2000 users who refuse to upgrade in 2010, when the operating system is officially considered obsolete by them.

I recollect that Microsoft had problems weaning organisations off of Windows NT when they considered that to be obsolete. It’s also worth remembering that Microsoft's revenue is largely dependent on persuading people to buy their latest software.

I note with interest that the latest version of the .NET Framework won't run on Windows 2000 Professional, that Internet Explorer 7.0 won't be available for Windows 2000 and that Defender (their anti-spyware product) won't be available for the platform either.

It seems increasingly prudent for organisations to consider upgrading to Windows XP (if they haven't done so already) over the next couple of years to avoid issues in the nearing future...

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Monday, January 08, 2007 11:33:22 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
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Review Entries for Day Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Sara Sheridan was awarded the inaugural 2006 Revell Research Systems Prize at the University of Plymouth yesterday, during an Award Ceremony held at Plymouth Guildhall.

Sara, who already has a BA(Hons) in Fine Art was present at the ceremony to receive her FdSc in Internet Technology in Business degree along with 140 other graduates.

Sara was formally awarded the prize by the University's Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Peter John, after a citation was read that outlined her achievements at the end of the ceremony. Sara was presented with a framed certificate marking the award of the 2006 prize by Dr Colin Williams, the Deputy Dean of the UPC Faculty.

Sara is pictured above being congratulated by Dr Colin Williams, while I look on in the background.

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Tuesday, November 28, 2006 4:26:57 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
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Review Entries for Day Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I am very pleased to announce that Revell Research Systems instituted an Undergraduate Prize at the University of Plymouth this summer as part of the celebrations of our 21st year in business as a consulting practice.
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Wednesday, November 22, 2006 2:19:53 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
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Review Entries for Day Tuesday, November 21, 2006
It is worrying that the University of Reading intends to close its Physics Department in 2010 (as reported by BBC News).
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Tuesday, November 21, 2006 12:36:50 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
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Review Entries for Day Saturday, November 18, 2006
This morning's article on BBC News that 11 million customers of the Nationwide Building Society in the UK have had their identities put at risk is a reminder to businesses that laptop and PDA security should be high on their agendas.
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Saturday, November 18, 2006 11:59:15 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Comments [0] General | Security | Trackback

Review Entries for Day Friday, November 17, 2006
I think that the incoming president of The British Computer Society (BCS), Professor Nigel Shadbolt, is right to highlight the fact that demand for IT graduates is rising at a time that supply is falling.
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Friday, November 17, 2006 1:56:00 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
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Review Entries for Day Tuesday, October 31, 2006
We've recently started porting our large .NET class libraries from .NET 1.1 to .NET 2.0, which has to date been a fairly smooth process. We've also been revising and enhancing classes as we go and I stumbled across a rather nasty catch during this process.
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Tuesday, October 31, 2006 5:52:39 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #
Comments [0] .NET | Coding | Trackback

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