Scheduling Software Empire Time WSG

One software tool all companies need is scheduling software. There are a lot of different scheduling software options out there. During the time I worked at a large defense company, several different scheduling software tools were used. Back then, I just had dial up for my internet connection. It made it very painful to load a couple of the different systems. There was one system that loaded great. Unfortunately, towards the end, they reverted back to the slowest loading system they had ever used. It wasn’t a very good idea. I always worried on time sheet submittal days whether or not I would be able to get in and submit the timesheet.
Scheduling software can be complex. Items it needs to keep track of include total number of hours worked, support for multiple projects, expense reports, vacation/time off hours used & available totals, and time sheet editing.
A company called WSG offers several different scheduling software tools. One tool is called Empire Time. It offers a simple user interface for project financial management with the ability to export reporting to an Excel spreadsheet or a PDF file. Using Empire Time allows for faster billing, financial period closures, and revenue recognition. It also allows for time and expense tracking, overtime and personal time off reporting. It has a high satisfaction rate among users. It supports multiple platforms, including a web based client for remote workers. Project assignments and holidays are automatically populated. It can also automatically import American Express expenses and automate expenses to payroll, so the employee can be quickly reimbursed. A special console is included for managers to use in approving timesheets.
If the Empire Time scheduling software sounds like it might be a good fit for your company, a demo is available at the WSG website, so you can try before you buy.

Engineering Software ZWSOFT ZWCAD ZW3D

There is a company called ZWSOFT that produces and sells engineering software. They have 19 years of experience in the CAD industry with over 180,000 users worldwide and 150 research and design engineers.
One of their engineering software products is called ZWCAD. It is a DWG file format compatible CAD tool designed to create and edit 2D objects. It is also used for dimensioning, 3D modeling, plotting and file sharing. Customizable features include a design center, tools and API customization. The user interface is simple, allowing users to quickly learn how to use it. ZWCAD has over 180,000 users in over 80 countries.
ZW3D is another engineering software product available from ZWSOFT. It helps create a product from start to finish in an integrated, collaborative environment. It allows for reuse and design sharing through data exchange. A one of a kind Overdrive kernel provides for hybrid modeling. Cavity preparation tools and libraries allow for mold and die design. ZW3D also allows for 2-axis to 5-axis CNC machining. The ZW3D software is used in many different industries, including the automotive, consumer products, machine design, mold and die, and medical industries. It is available in 12 different languages.
Forums are available for users of the ZWSOFT engineering software. API resources are also available for developers. An extensive knowledge base, tutorials and tips and tricks are offered for the ZWCAD and ZW3D engineering software on the ZWSOFT website. Online training is also available.
ZWSOFT has locations in China and the United States. They can be followed via social media on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Natural Health Nutrition vs. Medical Industry

Since being laid off back in February, I’ve had time to reflect on my career choice of software developer and whether I should stay on that path, or choose something else. I came to the conclusion that I want to continue on this path.
One area I have become interested in though is the natural health and nutrition field. It’s an area I prefer to keep as a hobby, rather than a career choice. I started learning about nutrition when my oldest son was born nine weeks early seven years ago and have continued learning even more as the boys have gotten older. Two years ago I was diagnosed as being on the verge of diabetes, even though I wasn’t overweight and didn’t really have any risk factors. It forced me to apply my natural health and nutrition knowledge to myself though. There is a lot of information out there on the internet. Some useful, some not, but it all basically says the same thing: eat fresh, local, organic fruits and vegetables, a couple servings per day of whole grains, a little dairy and lean meats, exercise, get enough rest and cut out high fructose corn syrup and all other artificial sweeteners and chemicals. Focusing on low glycemic foods is also important for stabilizing the blood sugar. My point of view is that I would much rather spend money on healthy food, vitamins and feel better, than spend money on junk food, medication and feel like crap.
Since my low glycemic, mediterranean diet change, my cholesterol and blood sugar numbers are much lower. I have way more energy, my head is clearer and I feel much better. The advice all the health gurus give, actually works. Imagine that.
I hate doctors and hospitals. Spending a week in the hospital when my water broke ten weeks early when I was pregnant with my oldest son, and constantly being poked and prodded by doctors in their and nurses in uniform was enough for me.
Medications are also full of weird chemicals, have side effects and often lead to other illnesses that will require yet another type of medication, which in turn will lead to another illness and more medication. So far, I haven’t had any weird side effects from eating fruits and vegetables.
If there’s something I can do to avoid the medical industry, then I’m more than willing to give it a try.

Center Stage

Guest written by our friend Gladys Fuentes

During the summer when all of my shows were just reruns, I would always check out to see which movies were available. I had debated adding the movie channels to my cable package when I had it installed, but knew that I would need them during this time of the year. Not only was I able to watch newer movies without leaving my house to rent DVDs, but I would often times catch old movies that brought back so many memories. One of my favorite movies in college was Centerstage. My best friend and I would put this in our sophomore year when we needed a break from the studying and stress of our classes. It was a total chick flick, but we never seemed to get tired of seeing it. It was on TV the other day, so I left it on while I got some things done around my house. I definitely watched more of the movie than I had planned. Needless to say, some of the things on my to do list didn’t get done as quickly as I had hoped.

Dennis Ritchie Founder of C Unix Passes Away Steve Jobs

The world has lost two geniuses in the past week:
Last week, Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple died of pancreatic cancer on Wednesday (October 5, 2011).
Over the weekend another lower key technology genius passed away, Dennis Ritchie, aka dmr. He was 70 and passed away after a long illness, reportedly of prostate cancer and heart disease, on Saturday (October 8, 2011).
Steve was the guy who brought the world Apple computers, iPod – 2001, iTunes – 2003, iPhone – 2007, App Store – 2008, and iPad – 2010.
However, none of that would have been possible without Dennis Ritchie. He was the founder of the C programming language along with being a key developer of Unix. Unix is the operating system that all of Steve Job’s creations are built upon. Without Unix, there would be no Apple.
C is the programming language used to create Unix. It’s also the language the majority of the web is based on. C++, Java, PHP are all based on C. Without C, programmers wouldn’t have a job, the web, smartphones wouldn’t exist. C is the founding father of programming languages.
C was the first language I learned when fate turned me from a math major into a programmer. Without it, I wouldn’t be able to work at home.
Kernighan & Ritchie – The C Programming Language is the C bible Dennis Ritchie helped write and is a standard in a programmer’s library.
It’s too bad Dennis Ritchie won’t be mourned by the millions mourning Steve Jobs. A Google search for Steve Jobs turns up 46,900,000 results. A Google search for Dennis Ritchie turns up 61,200 results. Truly sad. Steve Jobs was the face everyone knew, but Dennis Ritchie was the unseen guy in the back office making it all possible. RIP Dennis Ritchie…

#include “stdafx.h”

int main(int argc, char* argv[])
printf(“Goodbye World!n”);
return 0;

More Dennis Ritchie

Offshore Software Development Metrics BlueOptima

A lot of companies outsource work overseas. It’s cheap labor. If companies brought the work back here, it might help the economy a little. That will probably never happen though. It’s much easier to pay someone $1.00 than $20.00 for the same work. The question is, is it really more efficient or does it just seem like it is?
There is a company call BlueOptima that helps companies determine if offshore software development is really worthwhile. They analyze data taken from the systems that developers use to manage the software development process. Metrics for offshore software development, which include analytics and graphs, enable companies to determine which teams deliver software at a higher cost per unit of effort and how to reduce that cost. Offshore software development metrics also enable companies to find key spots to work on in the software, so that they can improve the development schedule and make better design decisions. The quality of the software is also improved because the analysis allows companies to have a better understanding of the effort involved in producing the software. Problem areas and bug fixes can be addressed in order of importance, so that the software can be brought to a stable level for release.
To get started, BlueOptima offers a full set of training courses for users, administrators and developers. Courses are available in a class room or online in a webinar. Separate classes are available for managers, developers and administrators. There is also implementation support to quickly and easily deploy BlueOptima and understand the current status of your software development process.
BlueOptima is a good place to start if your company outsources work overseas and you want to verify that it really is cost effective.

How To Get Started Learning PHP Guide

I’m always trying to learn new things. I get bored easily. One item on my list of things to learn that I can cross off is PHP.
PHP makes developing a website so easy. Much easier than using a combination of Javascript/Java/HTMl/Hibernate that I used on one project. I always thought PHP was a scripting language like Javascript, but it’s not. It’s a real programming language like C/C++ or Java. Only it’s meant for the web. It’s also installed on the server, so you don’t have to worry if the user has it enabled, like with Javascript.

Here’s what I did to go about getting my programming environment set up and the resources I used to learn PHP.

The PHP development environment I used is:

WAMP server – This installs PHP/MySQL/Apache all in one bundle. Much easier than installing and configuring each individual piece. It also installs phpMyAdmin, which is useful to view/edit/query a database. There’s also an XAMPP server that I wish I had known about before installing WAMP. XAMPP is geared more towards developing and also includes a few extra pieces, such as PERL.

PHP Eclipse – Helios – This is the tool I used for developing with PHP. The debugger is a little tricky. You can also use Netbeans, which I kind of prefer, but Eclipse has a nice searching option. Debugging in Netbeans is much easier though.

To learn PHP programming, I used these resources: – This site offers online courses that run 6 weeks and have 12 lessons each. 2 lessons are released each week with a final exam released at the end. There is a discussion board where you can communicate with the professor and other class members. Each lesson has an assignment and quiz. Each course costs around $89. If you can afford it, it’s a good way to get started. They offer 2 PHP courses: Introduction to PHP and MySQL and Intermediate PHP and MySQL. The introduction course walks you through developing a recipe website. The intermediate course walks you through developing an online store. Taking these courses was easier, quicker and less expensive than going to an actual class at a college.

PHP and MySQL Web Developmentby Luke Welling, Laura Thomson – A must have. Good reference, very thick, great book. This is the book to get if you can only get one PHP book.

Programming PHP – O’Reillyby Rasmus Lerdorf, Kevin Tatroe and Peter MacIntyre – This is a good book to actually sit down and read through to get started learning PHP. Good reference, much shorter than the Welling/Thomson book.

PHP Solutions – Dynamic Web Design Made Easyby David Powers – Good reference for “how to do something” in PHP.

A few useful links: – PHP functions, manual – tutorials, examples – tutorials, examples – beginner tutorial – example to use as a baseline in creating a single sign on server, global login/registration site.

A few miscellaneous links: – Official MySQL site
MySQL Community Server/ – a tool to make database backups/import a database, edit/view a database
DbVisualizer – A free database tool

More PHP Resources

Learning About Busness

Contribution by Stevie Kirby There are very few things you actually learn about running your own business from sitting in a college classroom. When I graduated with my entrepreneurship degree I thought I would be all set to start my own paper company but boy, was I mistaken. Things like hiring workers, working with noisy neighbors and everything in between really makes stuff tough. I didn’t know about when I first started and didn’t have any idea how to set up a credit card processor. I feel like what they need to do more of in college is out of classroom training and I wish I’d had more than one semester interning for a small business owner so I would know firsthand how things like this work. I’m learning on my own now but these are expensive lessons when you’ve got to come by them on your own and I wish I didn’t have to learn them when the stakes are so high! I loved college but I wonder if everyone feels like this about their degree.

Giving myself a chess gift

Guest post written by Nate Gregory

I’ve loved playing chess for so long now. I started playing it with my grandfather when I was really young and he would even let me beat him. But then I got good enough to where I started playing a whole lot better and could actually give him a run for his money. Well, I’ve continued to play chess for fun for the rest of my life and I thought that maybe now since I’m an adult with a real job, I should probably graduate from the plastic and cardboard set that I got for a couple of bucks at Walmart.

So I went online to try and find some nicer chess sets for myself. As I was looking through all of the different chess blogs, I ran across the site After I looked through it for a little bit I decided to sign up for one of the internet packages that I saw on there.

I found some directions for this really cool DIY chess set. I think I may just make that instead of buying myself a really nice set.