All posts by Tony

About Tony

My name is Tony Hewitt and I am a Computer Systems Developer of over 25 years. I have reached a point where the less trodden path appeals and have always had a burning desire to make a mark, or at least try.

Three days of reflection

Being able to think of new ideas on a regular basis is both a curse and a blessing. This state of mind is a similar problem to “Shiny Object Syndrome”.

Without wanting to sound arrogant, I have a tendency to think of new project ideas almost all of the time. Most of my random insights crash and burn within minutes of their first inception within the bounds of my sometimes chaotic brain. Any idea that survives beyond the normal first round of internal cross examination might bubble to the surface and trigger a level of excitement enough to instigate some form of action.

The first mistake easily made with a new born idea is to Continue reading

Shedding light on authenticity

Tungsten Lightbulb

I understand why power saving light bulbs are important and that the benefits can be two fold. The consumer doesn’t have as high an electricity bill compared to using old fashioned tungsten lighting, and the additional environment benefits due to the reduced energy consumption.

Ordinarily I am totally in favour of using energy efficient lighting. The only exception I think that should be made is Continue reading

Perceived value and the price that’s right

I have recently released my first online course “Javascript the beginners guide” on Udemy and the initial flurry of students taking my course was encouraging. However, to be strictly honest a reasonable proportion of the pupils are as a result of issuing a discount coupon and in the very early stages this was a completely free offer.

It is part of the common sales practice to offer something for free or heavily discounted to get the initial momentum and raise the profile of a new entry in the marketplace. This also acts as a reward for the early adopters of any product and this phase of the sales process is most definitely the easier phase, after all, Continue reading

Do we need another ZX81?

Sinclair_ZX81

I must confess as a child I was obsessed by how a computer worked or more accurately I had a habit of taking things to bits to find out how they worked. The trouble was I didn’t pay adequate attention as to how I had taken the chosen victim of destruction apart. The end result was a catalogue of defective items concealed around my bedroom, which I hoped no one would uncover and subsequently reveal the fruits of my labour.

In my early teens Sinclair Research released a new affordable home computer, it was the ZX81. This wasn’t the first offering from the Sinclair technology stables, however it was my first computer. With limited Continue reading

Sherlock couldn’t work in a call centre

The Sherlock Holmes series on the BBC has been a prime example of the good quality programmes the British Broadcasting Corporation is capable of. The writing, production and acting in this first class drama is almost second to none.

As part of the shows format, we are given an insight into some of the inner workings of Sherlock’s mind. The activity of the detective’s grey matter manifests in the form of rapid snapshots of his attention. These minute pieces of information quickly come together to formalise a dossier of information. This enables Sherlock to make necessary judgements about a person or situation and to then aggregate these episodes of insight into a case solving solution.

Sherlock is so good at what he does because Continue reading

Reconnaissance trip to Ashbourne, Derbyshire

Derbyshire Countryside

My Father and Mother in-law are turning seventy this year, and so in connection with this the extended family are planning a meet up in late spring to celebrate the occasion. The intention is for everyone to congregate at a campsite just north of Ashbourne in Derbyshire.

Family members currently live in both the north and south of the UK and therefore Derbyshire seemed like a sensible, central location for us all to meet. Apart from the mutual proximity benefit for family members, it is also a very beautiful, interesting place to host a party.

The in-laws decided it would be a good idea to Continue reading

Flexi-time rich

hourglass

Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It has been just over ten months since I embarked on my journey of uncharted life and as I have progressed through my various projects so far, I have come to realise that I am to a large extent time rich, or at least that’s how it might appear.

Where I was previously working in the normal nine to five regime most of us adhere to, I tended to neglect certain life demands that just Continue reading

It’s all relative

windowphoto

I was visiting a close friend yesterday and something became acutely apparent to me.

I have known this friend for around 25 years now and have respect for him which is hard to quantify in words. He is a very intelligent, wise gentlemen and from time to time I have had the good fortune to receive some of his wisdom and perspective he brings to life.

Whilst visiting this friend yesterday, he became obsessed by the opaque nature of his windows in his kitchen. The focus of his attention appeared to be a slight layer of dirt or grease obscuring the view to what is a splendid garden.

This annoyance was made worse Continue reading

The smartphone gravy train

Has the smartphone gravy train finally reached its destination?

I don’t know about you, but I sense a fatigue among us smartphone users as the next incremental upgrade isn’t quite doing it.

Looking back to when the Apple IPhone was first demonstrated by Steve Jobs the audience was blown away, and rightly so as this was a major leap in mobile device innovation.

The problem is Continue reading

Where have I got to?

So this time last year I stepped away from my full time job developing primarily web and desktop applications. I wanted to taste the red pill or at least suck the pill and see. I had reached a point where I needed to take this step. People on the outside, might view this move as somewhat irresponsible and in a way yes it could be, but I had to make the leap, the direction I was heading was not a good one on so many levels.

So along with a co-founder we Continue reading