Co-work at Tampa Bay Wave: Tuesday, September 1 from 10am – 6pm!

tampa bay wave

joe healyThe Tampa tech scene wouldn’t be the same with the smiling face and hard work of Microsoft evangelist Joe Healy (he’s @DevFish on Twitter), whom I had the pleasure of meeting on the second week of my job at Microsoft back in 2008. Many developer/techie/creative events here in the Accordion Bay area come about with a little help from Joe, and I’m thankful for everything he does.

Every now and again, in order to help the community stay in touch — and possibly just to keep us off the streets — he holds “co-working office hours”, in which he opens up Microsoft’s Tampa offices to let indie, freelance, and other works not tied to an office space to come hang out, get work done, and even play a board game or two. I’ve been to a couple of these, and they’re part of my usual changes of pace that I set up to make sure I don’t go stir crazy at my home office.

Tomorrow, Tuesday, September 1st, he’s hosting a special co-working day at Tampa Bay Wave’s headquarters from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m..

For those of you not familiar with it, Tampa Bay Wave is a venture center, incubator/accelerator, coworking space, and general booster of entrepreneurial and techie activity for Tampa Bay. Founded in 2008, they’re a  non-profit public charity whose goal is to support the local tech community and help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into growing businesses with their “for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs” approach.

Tampa Bay Wave’s marketing manager, Gracie Leigh Stemmer (she’s @GracieLeighz on Twitter) has invited us to all work at their new downtown Tampa facility, and Joe will be playing host. I’ll be there, and if you’d like to be there too — to work, play, or a little bit of both — come on down! You can find more details on the event’s meetup page.

The details

  • Here’s the event’s page.
  • What: Co-working at Tampa Bay Wave. Bring your laptop, hang out, and get some work done!
  • When: Tuesday, September 1st, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m..
  • Where: Tampa Bay Wave’s downtown office — 500 East Kennedy Blvd, 3rd floor.
  • Other details:
    • There’s lots of pay parking all around the area.
    • There are lunch places aplenty in the area — odds are that someone will organize a lunch expedition.
    • There may be an after-work drinks/dinner thing that night.
Swift Kick

My “How to constrain text fields” and “How to work with dates and times in Swift” articles, updated for Swift 2


Of all the new features that come with the upcoming “2.0” version of Apple’s Swift programming language, there’s an annoying one: it breaks a lot of earlier code. I’ve been going through my more popular Swift articles and updating them for Swift 2, and now they’re ready:

How to program an iOS text field that takes only numeric input or specific characters with a maximum length: One of the most popular tutorials on this blog, this covers a way to constraint text fields so that they accept only numeric input or specific characters, and limits the number of characters they will accept.

How to work with dates and times in Swift, part one: An introduction of Cocoa’s date and time classes, and how they work together. This article covers UTC (Coordinated Universal Time), and the key classes: NSDate, NSCalendar, NSDateComponents.

How to work with dates and times in Swift, part two: Calculations with dates: Now that we’ve got the basics, it’s time to do some date arithmetic: comparing two dates to see which one is the earlier and later one, finding out how far apart two dates are, and adding and subtracting from dates.

How to work with dates and times in Swift, part three: Making date arithmetic more Swift-like: Cocoa’s date and time classes have an Objective-C heritage, which in the Swift context, feel kind of clunky. In this article, I look at ways — and by ways, I mean helper functions and class extensions — to make date calculations feel more like Swift.

How to work with dates and times in Swift, part four: A more Swift-like way to get the time interval between two dates: This quick article shows you how to make an operator overload that makes getting the time interval between two dates more like subtraction.


Xcode 7 beta 6 is now available!

beta 6 is out

If you’re the kind to keep up with the latest Xcode betas, you’ll want to go to the Xcode download page, because Apple have just released beta 6 of the upcoming Xcode 7! If you’ve been thinking about taking Swift 2 for a spin but have been holding off, you may want to try this one — we’re not far away from the GM release, and most of the changes seem to be bug fixes.


40% off 128GB SanDisk microSD card – Was $100, now $60 until August 30th

sandisk microsd card sale

Here’s your deal of the day! If you’ve wanted to dramatically increase the storage on your Android device, needed to shoot a lot of video on your digital camera, or needed extra drive space on your laptop but don’t want to lug an external hard drive around, this deal’s for you. From now until the end of August 30th, Amazon has taken 40% off the $100 price tag for the older version of SanDisk’s Ultra 128GB UHS-I/Class 10 microSDXC memory card, knocking its price down to a mere $60. The card comes with an adapter so that it’ll fit into full-sized SD card slots (like those in your laptop or digital camera) as well as in microSD card slots like those in your Android smartphone or tablet.

Note that this is SanDisk’s older model of 128GB microSD card, with a maximum read speed of 48MB per second (and you can assume the write speed is slower). The newer model, which boasts a faster read speed of up to 80MB/second, normally sells for $150 and is currently listed on Amazon for $110.


[Updated] “Dark Mobile” webinar with Enterprise Mobile: September 29th

dark mobile

On Tuesday, September 29th at 1:00 p.m. eastern (10:00 a.m. Pacific), GSG and Enterprise Mobile will host a webinar titled The Secrets Nobody Tells You About Dark Mobile. It’s free to attend, and you can register here.

In this webinar, Enterprise Mobile’s VP Sales Jay Gordon and GSG’s Platform Evangelist Joey deVilla will talk about that area of an organization’s mobile telecom environment that goes, unobserved, unknown, or unmanaged — the terra incognita that we call “Dark Mobile”. We look at the negative effects it has on a company’s…

  • spending,
  • management,
  • security, and
  • efficiency

Join us in this quick webinar (it’ll be about half an hour) as we look at the four kinds of Dark Mobile and how we can shed some light into this crucial area of your IT environment.

this article also appears in the GSG blog


Alphabet explained

This chart is the quickest way to explain the companies under Larry Page and Sergei Brin’s new holding company, Alphabet:

alphabet explained

Click the graphic to see it at full size.


Alphabet: Because “Umbrella Corporation” was already taken

umbrella corporation

I’ll bet their original motto was also “Don’t be evil”.

Larry Page has just announced that he’s creating a new holding company called Alphabet. In the latest post on Google’s official blog, he writes:

What is Alphabet? Alphabet is mostly a collection of companies. The largest of which, of course, is Google. This newer Google is a bit slimmed down, with the companies that are pretty far afield of our main Internet products contained in Alphabet instead. What do we mean by far afield? Good examples are our health efforts: Life Sciences (that works on the glucose-sensing contact lens), and Calico (focused on longevity). Fundamentally, we believe this allows us more management scale, as we can run things independently that aren’t very related. Alphabet is about businesses prospering through strong leaders and independence. In general, our model is to have a strong CEO who runs each business, with Sergey and me in service to them as needed. We will rigorously handle capital allocation and work to make sure each business is executing well. We’ll also make sure we have a great CEO for each business, and we’ll determine their compensation. In addition, with this new structure we plan to implement segment reporting for our Q4 results, where Google financials will be provided separately than those for the rest of Alphabet businesses as a whole.

Alphabet’s site is located at the clever URL

alphabet web site

…which makes it the second .xyz domain I know. Here’s the first:

hooli xyz site