Monthly Archives: December 2006

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The Apple rumour mill is gearing up again

MacWorld 07 is getting closer and the Mac world is getting more and more excited. All the rumour sites are bristling with news about possible product launches or modifications of existing products. Everybody is expecting the iTV of course and possibly some new iPod model. But then there is a Quad-core Mac Pro workstation, a ultrathin 12 inch MacBook Pro and of course the mobile phone….

Well, Steve Jobs is about to enter the stage again at 0900 on January the 9th and then we will know more. For those of you that have no idea of what this is all about have a look at a past event here:

WWDC 2006 Keynote

Car window smashed…

Had my second day of Christmas shopping today and did find some good gifts to my mother and brother. It was really a nice time together with a good friend. When we returned to my car some bastard had smashed one of the windows and stole my iPod. Instead of just disconnecting it from the car mount they ripped the whole thing. I had three hours of driving in front of me and it was a Saturday at 17.15 the day before Christmas Eve. How fun is that?! Luckily I managed to find a glass repair shop that could do emergency repairs enough to go to my Mum´s. Arrived at midnight.

Discovery has landed – Fuglesang is back on earth

I am so proud of our first Swedish astronaut Christer Fuglesang. I watched the whole thing from deorbit burn to landing at Kennedy Space Center in Florida on NASA TV and also some parts which was broadcast live on Swedish television. I rather quickly decided that watching the Swedish television but turning the sound off and listening to the NASA TV commentator was much better. Somehow all the Swedish journalists seem so corny and uninformed about space issues. I think it is so amazing to see how the orbiter slows down from Mach 30 or something when entering the atmosphere down to around 350 km/h when landing at the Shuttle Landing Facility at the Cape. I hope there will be some kind of celebration when he comes back to Sweden. I will be there waving flags!

Started Christmas Shopping today

Somehow, I always do this a bit too late. I wonder why this part of the year seem to be repeating itself – maybe that is the whole point of Christmas. To feel a bit secure that everything stays the same…I managed to find some gifts, I like that the opening hours are longer and longer every year…

Bounce Street Dance Company is just great

Today I went to see Bounce perform at Dansens Hus here in Stockholm. It was a show based on the film “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (Gökboet in Swedish) but it is rather freely interpreted as always when Bounce are undertaking something. They had some really cool techniques in the show. Everything from lights, setting, how they used formal ballet class as drugs and of course dancing on a steep slope with harnesses.

Lift-off!

Discover Launch
It was rather intense even from the comfort of my sofa. I turned up the volume on my sound system and watched the launch on my 100 inch projector screen and is was a beautiful sight. Our first astronaut is on his way towards the International Space Station (ISS). Good luck, Christer!

I checked some of the Swedish news pages and it was interesting to see the difference in the reporting before and after. Before there was a lot of talks about waiting, costs and the need for space flight. Afterwords several reporters were very taken by the moment and words like “Completely insane” and “So beautiful” were said. Now I am waiting to see the live coverage of Christer Fuglesang´s space walks and also the live interview on TV4 on Friday.

First attempt "scrubbed"

STS-116 Crew with Swedih Astronaut Christer Fuglesang

Today I woke up at 0320 local time here in Sweden to have a look at the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery with the first Swedish astronaut Christer Fuglesang on board. Swedish Television (SVT) was broadcasting live but I was immediately rather disturbed by the quality of the recording. As usual the reporters did not seem to understand the subject at all and very posing a lot of rather strange questions. So I more or less turned off the sound and looked at my full screen image of the webbased NASA TV broadcast instead. I am a space-buff and really enjoy the technical NASA-lingo which actually provide some information of what is happening with images from the launch room and the pad. While that was happening SVT just hade studio discussion with some invited guests. The count-down proceeded down to T-5 minutes and was then stopped waiting for the final weather check from the Shuttle Weather Officer. Unfortunately they soon announced that the launch window had closed and the attempt was scrubbed. And what did the Swedish reporter asked !? “Oh…what a disappointed (turing to Sven Grahn) and how much do you think this attempt cost?”

And what does make my most annoyed is the repeated focus on Christer Fuglesang as a guy “who just waits and will not get his launch”. Like he has been on many crews and then the missions have been scrubbed. In fact the only time he has been officially named as a “reserve” was on the Euro-Mir projects back in 1995 when Thomas Reiter was selected instead. During that time Christer served as CAP-Com in Moscow gaining a lot of experiences of long space-flights.

Well, I look forward to a second attempt on Saturday and I actually understand that 30 % chance of suitable weather conditions means just that. Wouldn´t it be great to have NASA TV available on Cable TV here in Sweden. Imagine actually looking through Christers camera while he is doing his space-walk…

SOA, Web Services and EAI

Today I finished a very interesting course here in Stockholm. Even though things like Service Oriented Architectures (SAO) were not new to me I found it very interesting to have some lectures about the different technologies behind this. Otherwise there is a risk that it becomes not only more than a number of buzz-words. The first SOA part contained a good disussion about what a service is, how small or big it should be and how handle versioning of services. The second part focused more on the technologies behind Web Service and how standard web servers together with a few standardized protocols provide a mechanism for server-to-server communication. The last part covering Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) contained a lot of news for me. These EAI-products works like enterprise hubs for integration efforts and makes it possible to handle large-scale integration projects where just Web Services would render “integration spagetti”. A new flavour of these products are Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) which also looks very promising.