About Me

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I recently graduated with an MBA and an M.S. Information Systems from Boston University, concentrating in Marketing and Business Analytics. I also live on a boat and have a Boston Terrier named Maracas.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 4

Day 4 – AWS
5:04 pm
I am pretty excited with all of the progress that I have made!
This morning I finished coding the calculator so that the slider would work and the user would not be able to input numbers in the calculator.  The was this was done was by connecting the slider to the actual “action” and replacing the text fields with labels.  That’s it.  
Eventually, I started playing with the AWS SDK.  I ran a demo app that they included called “HighScores.”  This application allows a user to input a player’s name and their score.  Then, the app logs into the SimpleDB of AWS and downloads the info.  This is something that I’m interested in because I would like to register a user, and also log their scores and energy usage.  My only problem was that I wasn’t able to see the tables after inputing the info.  After some research I came across a plug-in for Firefox that allows me to connect directly to AWS and query my tables.  Here is the link for the plug-in: http://code.google.com/p/sdbtool/
After getting that to work I was very excited to actually program my app so that you can register your name, email, and password.  I decided that the best way to do this would be to work backwards from the “HighScores” app.  NOT AS EASY AS IT SOUNDS! I have had many issues and have had to work out many bugs.  The nice thing is that I am learning a bunch.  I finally got it to work (10 minutes ago, that’s why I’m writing this) but I am not able to register anything on AWS.  I will keep working on this next week.  For now I have to work on other school stuff.
Here is a picture of Maracas on a boat.

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 3

Day 3 – Xcode 4.2
3:38 pm
I finished eight of the use cases last week and it all seems pretty straight forward. Last week I started comparing GameSalad to Xcode 3.6 and it seemed like GameSalad would be easier and Xcode would be hard. However, after doing some research and watching a bunch of tutorials on YouTube, I have decided to splurge and by Mac OS X Lion because Xcode 4.2 is free with this OS. The reason I did that was because Xcode 4.2 has something called “storyboard” which makes programming relatively easy. So no more GameSalad for me, thank you!
I started programming some simple things like adding buttons and making the views switch. It really is pretty easy stuff. I am going to start creating an outline for my app and will start playing with inputing text and storing it. I have also talked to some people about AWS vs other services.
Lastly, I found this great website that explains everything very well: http://learntoprogramc.wordpress.com
Stay tuned for more segments of my journal! For now, here is a picture of Maracas:
Maracas and her Life Vest

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 2

Day 2 – Some More Research
3:40 pm
I have started creating the use cases for the app. These seem to be pretty straight forward. In fact, the whole interactions seems to be pretty straight forward. I now believe that the difficult components are going to be the games and the manufacturing of the device that will read the electricity consumption. However, I did some research and I’m pretty sure that the device will be easy to make.
Also, I started comparing GameSalad to Xcode. It seems like GameSalad is very easy to use, because it is not very complex and has a drag-and-drop interface. This has obvious limitations, so I may use it to just prove out some games before I start coding the real games. Xcode 3.6 is going to be a difficult task to learn, but I am deeply interested in learning. I have found many websites that seem helpful and I have logged them into my delicious account.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

iPhone Apps for Business Students - Day 1

Day 1 - The Beginning

3:24 pm
As I start my research on how to develop iPhone apps, all sorts of thoughts come to my mind. I really want to do so much for this app that I need to start structuring all of my ideas. So far today, I have created the template for a Relational Database using Access 2007, downloaded the Stanford iPhone app class videos, and started downloading a bunch of tools and SDK’s, such as:

Also, I started writing some of the use cases that I think will occur during the user experience. In any case, I have started playing with Xcode. Let us venture...

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Alternative Housing: Boats!

Life on a boat is fantastic! You get to live next to the ocean (literally)and are rocked to sleep every night. There is a great community in the marina and Charlestown is a great town. Even if you live on a small sailboat, the marina has showers, bathrooms, a mailroom, washers, dryers, grills, and even a coveredpool for the winter months. The following is a satellite picture of the marina, and the map shows the distance (only three miles) from the marina to the Boston University Graduate School of Management.

There are several ways of getting to BU from the marina. On a nice day you can walk or take a bike, and on other days you can ride the subway. The closest “T” station is North Station on the Green Line. During the summer, life on a boat is a breeze. You come home to friendly people, and the smell of a sizzling grill. During the fall, the excitement winds down a little, but the Boston Bruins start the season and are just 10 minutes away. Here is a picture of me holding a faux Stanley Cup with the marina and the TD Garden behind me.
During the fall, the summer boats pack up and leave, and only the live-aboards stick around. There are approximately 100 of us that live on boats yearlong. The fall is beautiful in Charlestown. The leaves start changing colors, the days are shorter, and the breeze that you get from the ocean is always refreshing. Also, the sunsets are amazing as you can see from this picture.As the winter approaches, people start winterizing their boats. This includes shrink-wrapping it, adding antifreeze, and tying your boat well so you can brave the Nor’easter storms. The shrink-wrap is placed over the boat for several reasons. For starters, it keeps the snow off the surface of the boats. It also creates additional space on the top deck. And lastly, it creates a sort of Green House effect where the sun shines in during the day and the heat is trapped inside the shrink-wrap so your boat is nice and warm for the evening.
The winter isn’t so bad. Contrary to what people think, it is actually warmer than the mainland. The friendly staff at the marina keeps the snow and ice off the docks and your neighbors will invite you for a winter warmer. This picture shows what the marina looks like during the winter. All of the boats look like tents from the shrink-wrapping. As spring approaches, people like me tend to get overly eager and remove the shrink-wrap way too soon. I usually set up the grill on the top deck and start grilling during the first weeks of March. Finally, the warm months return and life is beautiful once again. It is definitely an interesting life, and one worth having and talking about. There are many housing alternatives in Boston, but few so interesting. The MBA Experience is so much fun, and I never thought I could make it even more interesting until I jumped on the opportunity of living on a boat.