I encountered a rather annoying error message in this CMS when I wanted to add a Sitemap component called joomap to Mambo (to improve Google indexing ).

XML Parsing Error: junk after document element
Location: http://www.orbit.me.uk /index.php? option=com_joomap&view=google
Line Number 2, Column 1:<b>Warning</b>:  Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in <b>[snip] /administrator /components /com_joomap /plugins /content.plugin.php</b> on line <b>88</b><br />

This was a problem because it was stopping Google indexing the sitemap. So I decided to dust off my PHP and tackle the problem head on…

Continue reading “Joomap error at line 88 foreach()”

New broadband provider… a new year. Excellent:

Uptime: 0 days, 4:11:09
Modulation: G.992.5 Annex A
Bandwidth (Up/Down) [kbps/kbps]: 1,291 / 7,264
   
Output Power (Up/Down) [dBm]: 12.0 / 18.0
Line Attenuation (Up/Down) [dB]: 21.5 / 39.5
SN Margin (Up/Down) [dB]: 7.0 / 6.5

 Ah, heck, it might not be 24Mb but its enough for me.

 

The essence of customers’ expectations is about customers’ needs and requirements. The needs are harder to identify as they are more profound than the requirements which are pretty obvious and straightforward. Therefore, we need to identify the degree in which these elements are present through a survey. We need to quantify customers’ perception about the quality of our service given that customers do not (or should not) always expect ‘the best’ from us as this is subject to the cost and time available for completing the project rather than our capability and experience.

Any questionnaire should consist of quantifiable/measurable elements rated in a scale of 0-100% tolerance against customers’ standards. The same survey should then form part of our service benchmark completed by the client (benchmark the demand for service). This means that we should ideally carry out a customers’ expectation survey once we undertake the project, then using the same survey for having our performance measured by the client so we can check how well we perform through the customer’s eyes (customers shouts) and identify the areas of improvement prior to getting on site. Lastly, on the project’s practical completion we need to carry out the final satisfaction survey.

Three are the key elements to the customer’s expectations.

  1. Cost/Time
  2. Quality
  3. Competitive advantage (the wow factor that differentiates our brand from the competitors)

The questions is how elastic/inelastic are the above from the customers’ perspective? Meaning: 

  • What factors the customer feels as essential, prerequisites? Must have, the basics? (for example: H&S issues)
  • What factors add value to the service/product for the customers? It is about good performance, deliver what we promise (for example: min cost and time, higher quality)
  • What is the ‘wow’ factor of our service? Do we add value that the customer doesn’t expect? (Satisfy the ‘greedy’ customers. Once the basics, or expected requirements are met then they ask for more!)
  • Being successful means that not only we should offer what customers expect but also what they don’t expect.

The input would be: customers’ requirements and lessons learnt which are turned into the output: improved quality approach and structure, calibrate the service to meet demands

Knowing our customers needs, requirements and expectations provides us with better visibility thus, better forward planning avoiding bad surprises and implications which can put the project’s quality at risk.

Ok, I confess, I went to see the Spice Girls at the O2 Arena last night. It wasn't my fault, the man with the free VIP lounge with free hospitality (inc. bar!) made me do it! It was an impressive sight, but I certainly wasn't there for the music!

Forgive me?

P.S. I will try and get Angel to write more about the experience. 

Christmass came and went. Ah well, a new year is ahead now. It was really very different. It was the very first christmas in my life that I had to celebrate without my family or, to be more precise, only part of my family. It was beautiful however, something was missing, something that wasn't there, something that was left in the wrong place at the wrong time…my parents. Regarding the New Year eve that was the loneliest ever. Me being seated in the sofa, sick, strugling to keep my eyes open for the advent of the new year watching Monty Python's 'The Life of Brian'. 

One whole year has passed already since I arrived in this country with one piece of luggage and the cookie bear in my back pack. One whole year of stress, worries, challenges, failure and success. I tasted them all, I possessed them all but most importantly I wan't alone. I was also loved a lot. 

Aspirations for the year that lays ahead? Plenty, being a bit more secure, even wiser, better equipped, I dare say even more greedy and demanding from my life; I keep my eyes fixed in the path in front of me. It won't be easy but it is a path I chose. And as a good friend told me before I leave Ioannina '…..those who deserve; the good ones, have options, thus choices…'

 

Ok, so because of a potential hole in the Mambo CMS with the PHP rule "RegisterGlobals On" I get people trying to inject code into my website. However I don't actually use the Register Globals On, because I am less of a fool than you might think and I wanted to highlight this problem in my log and block the requests.

Continue reading “Apache Rewrite to deal with code injections in URIs”

DVB-T2 is an 'improved' version of the existing methods we use to broadcast digital television using traditional terrestrial antennas. The idea is to achieve a better than 30% improvement in available capacity.

There is a question that has been circulated to the group discussing the design of this system: "how much will it cost?", the true cost is not the transmission system but the cost of the boxes. Here are some of my thoughts, many of which I have not sent to the DVB-T2 group because they fall outside of the debate I want to involve myself in.

Continue reading “DVB-T2 the cost debate”