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From the Editor, September 2010

Volume Number: 26
Issue Number: 09
Column Tag: Editorial

From the Editor, September 2010

Something that I've been a bit consumed with lately is analyzing why we do what we do. Specifically, why do any of us get involved with computers and the jobs associated with technology. It's a question I've been asking myself and just about every self-avowed technology professional that I meet. I personally was intrigued by video games - specifically, an Atari 2600 - that made me wonder how it all worked. On getting my own Atari console, I took it apart in short order. I learned how to repair the joysticks and solder the many connections. This all ultimately led to development and system integration.

Perhaps I'm not the youngest tech in the room any longer, but that curiosity remains. How does this work? How far can I push this? I'm finding that the best techs at any age still have that curiosity and are just intrigued by technology itself, without respect to hardware or OS. There are plenty of necessary ancillary roles in the technology field that don't necessarily require hardcore coding skills or knowledge of every facet of an operating system.

I'd posit, though, that in every profession, curiosity is what keeps the passion alive. So, what are you curious about? Are you forever exploring? Or are you stuck in a rut? If you're stuck a rut, consider a change: if you're a database person, go learn about CoreAnimation. If you haven't ventured into iOS apps, perhaps now is the time. If you're not ready for other diversions, look at improving and perfecting the work you're already doing. There's just too much out there to ever get bored.

This month, we're really trying to ensure you're not developing tech ennui. Our cover story signals a new series of articles from Ryan Wilcox, "Consultant Cowboy." Consultants face a unique challenge: keeping up with all of the technology while taking on business leadership. Ryan writes of his own experiences to help guide those just getting started in the consulting arena.

Sharkfest is an annual conference for people using the Wireshark Network Packet Analyzer. Reading network packet traces is yet another language and takes a particular skill to read and decode. Returning author Kok-Yong Tan attended this year's conference and delivers a write up introducing the show and reviews the activities for those interested in learning more.

Speaking of digging below the surface, Greg Neagle always seems to be digging in further than most and this month reveals a bit more in his exploration of Adobe's newest utility, AAMEE. IF you're a Mac System Administrator, This month's MacEnterprise column shows you what AAMEE can (and connot) do for you.

Boisy G. Pitre's new column, "Developer to Developer," exemplifies a way to refine something you're already doing: writing code. "What's Your Style?" should have you questioning your coding style and making sure you have reasons behind your choices.

José Cruz's "Scripting with Satimage" continues with a second part that extends the basics introduced last month.

Mike Hjörleifsson writes in this month's CoreSec about ways to manage iOS devices. As more and more iPhones and iPads are rolled out as Enterprise devices (and, by extension, corporate owned), more and more scrutiny will be placed on keeping these mini-computers in check. If you're now facing this, this is the article for you.

Returning author Mihalis Tsoukalos brings up a topic that we're often asked about: getting a web-based CMS running on Mac OS X. This month, he delves into the installation of Joomla!, a popular CMS with an active development community.

This month's Mac in the Shell talks about several window management tools from independent developers that help you avoid using the mouse and help you get your windows just so.

Finally, this month's MacTech Spotlight shines on Philippe Casgrain, a developer at TransGaming, Inc. We've probably all played a Cider-based game on the Mac by now, and we'd all have to admit that it's pretty cool technology. To work on this technology, Philippe had to stretch the bounds of his love for OS Xand Cocoa to learn a bit about the Windows API. Check out Philippe's story in this month's Spotlight.

Until next month, keep questioning yourself, improving on yourself and stay curious.

Ed Marczak,

Executive Editor


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