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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Best of Cars & Coffee Irvine 5+ Years of Fun

We are all sad that Cars & Coffee is closed indefinitely in Irvine. Thank you very much to all the organizers for giving us beautiful Saturday mornings so that we as car enthusiasts can all hang out in one spot. I am confident that C&C will reopen somewhere else in Orange County in the near future.

I put together an album collecting Cars & Coffee Irvine pictures from last 5+ years. Here is the link to the full album of this collection "Best of Cars & Coffee Irvine 5+ Years":

ALBUM: Best of Cars & Coffee Irvine 5+ Years of Fun


- almirsCorner.com -

#cars #CarsAndCoffee #Irvine #CarsAndCoffeeIrvine #RIPCarsAndCoffeeIrvine #carcrazy #CarEnthusiasts #OrangeCounty #California #SoCal #Driving

Friday, December 26, 2014

Enterprise Software Architecture - Generation X and Generation Y ?

Are Enterprise architecture changes kind of aligned with the dominance era of Generation X and Generation Y software engineers?

Applications used to be single or two-tier and applications made calls directly into the database.

Then the N-tier architecture revolutionized the software engineering. Applications (Clients) were communicating over TCP/IP to a service layer. This allowed us to separate the clients applications from the service application physically and it allowed us to scale better. It also allowed us to protect the service layer (where business logic resided) and to allow only certain clients to talk to these services on certain ports.

However, over the years the Enterprise development community kept implementing the "Service" tier as one big giant and exposing different endpoints and claiming that it is a Service Oriented Architecture. This works, but your code-base becomes very tightly coupled. To make this even better there are some steps to take in the right direction.

Vertical-slicing the "Service" giant into small services is the way to go. I understand that this is easy to say when you are starting from scratch, but we know it is a not an easy task if you already have large applications. What does "vertical-slicing" really mean? It means that each service is 100% independent of each other and they can even be coded in different programming languages / development stacks.

The overall goal is always:
  • Keep It Simple
  • Lightweight architecture
  • As platform agnostic as possible
The buzz word out there is "microservices". It is fine to take good things out of the microservices' architecture, but if you follow it religiously you might be jeopardizing the simplicity. I am sure this is up to debate. All I am saying is: Identify problems that you need to solve and find a solution for them. If that solution ends up being 50% of microservices architecture or 70% or 100%, then that's what it is. Just don't start by picking architecture that solved somebody else's problems without trying to find a solution yourself.

Below diagram will show you the following:
  • Your business logic broken down into smaller independent services (Right side)
  • Libraries/APIs that are treated as black-boxes and consumed by your code (Bottom of diagram)
  • Your Website code and the Low-level website layer that bridges your website with all the services (Left side)

In the future posts I will go into more details and show examples of how you can organize this using .NET (Visual Studio solutions) or using Python as an open-source example.

Download the PDF version of this diagram.
Open the Google Drawing version of this diagram.

- almirsCorner.com -

#SoftwareDevelopment #SoftwareEngineering #Architecture #KeepItSimple #tech #programming #programmer #code #coding #LightweightArchitecture #microservices #webservices #Ntier #ClientServer #Csharp #Python #Ruby #Java #JSON #Restful #XML #WebAPI 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Programming - Clever vs. Proper

Clever programming is clever, but is it necessarily proper? No, it is not. Typically when you are in crunch time, you come up with a clever solution given the circumstances, but it could be as pretty as a crowbar.

Proper programming is the right solution; it is maintainable and flexible enough to support the business changes.

Keep in mind that a clever solution can also be proper :)

- almirsCorner.com -

#tech #programming #software #softwaredevelopment #softwareengineering #programmer #coding #code 

Car Purchase - Important Tips

Purchasing a new or used car is not easy if you go to places where bargaining is allowed. If your salesman does not win in one aspect of bargaining, they will compensate somewhere else. That's why I am listing these basic tips that you can follow to make your car purchase process as smooth as possible.

1. Bring someone with you so that the salesman does not keep the eye contact with you 100% of the time. That's what they want.

2. Bring printouts of Invoice prices from Yahoo Autos or MSN Autos. This can be used so that salesman does not give you some unreal MSRP prices.

3. Never negotiate on the monthly payment. Negotiate on the price of the car before taxes or after taxes (your choice).

4. It is NOT over yet. After you make the deal on the overall price of the car, it is NOT over yet.

5. You will be taken to a finance person who will print out a bunch of papers and trust us, they will always be some add-ons that you did not explicitly agree on. Please review it all and see if your monthly payments match and if the duration of the loan matches. Take your time.

6. Now, you are done. Wait, did they give you the keys and the car.

- almirsCorner.com -
#cars #carpurchase #buycar #carreview #carbuying #autosale #tips #almirsCorner #carsale #bargain 

Good Process, Good Team, Trust in Team - Success??

Please look at the image. Here is the summary of the image in plain text.

** Good Process + Good Team + TRUST in Team = Repetitiveness/Audit Pass + Success 

** Therefore,  Good Team + TRUST in Team = Success

People on the team and trust in them is the formula for your success and keep in mind that behind that good process hides a group of people that are also part of the same team driving that success.

- almirsCorner.com - 

#process #changecontrol #team #success #teamwork #trust #TrustInTeam #TeamTrust #waterfall #agile #scrum

Friday, December 19, 2014

Method vs. Goal?

The method of doing something is equally important as the end goal.

This applies in our personal and professional life.

You can achieve the end goal with a bad method, but what will happen to your next goal? Think work. Think personal life.

- almirsCorner.com -

#life #work #professional #goal #method #tech #fairness #almirsCorner 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Kids spell "Love" as T.I.M.E. How do we balance T-I-M-E at home and T-I-M-E at work?

We know that kids spell the word "Love" as T-I-M-E. If that is the case, how do we as parents and professionals balance T-I-M-E at home and T-I-M-E at work?

If you are behind with T-I-M-E at home, can it be compensated by T-O-Y-S :)
Definitely not.

Everybody is different, but what's common is that the time runs equally for everybody. Let's all take a few minutes in a day and think about this and come up with an approach that works for us.

Enjoy the T-I-M-E during the winter break.

- almirsCorner.com -
#time #Love #family #parents #holidays #almirsCorner #balance #timemanagement 

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Saving Money and Clearing Cookies - How are they related?

We need to clear cookies in our browsers before doing online shopping because some websites will charge you more if they know you are a returning customer. Also, clearing cookies is good from security point of view.

- almirsCorner.com -

#tech #cookies #shopping #onlineshopping #security #money #technology #almirsCorner

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


I almost recorded a big plane landing over 405 freeway on John Wayne airport as I was driving to work.

I had my camera mounted on my window this morning as I wanted to record my drive to work. I ran out of space on my SD card just before a big plane was landing on John Wayne airport flying over 405 freeway right in front of me. 

Luck and no luck. I was lucky to see it with my own eyes, but not lucky enough to catch it on video. 

What's the probability of the plane being at its lowest position above 405 freeway and being right in front of me while driving on 405 freeway? Let's say that I drive to work 200+ times a year? The probabilities are very low.

- almirsCorner.com -

Monday, December 15, 2014

Your Online Presence - The Technology makes the World a big village

You may say that you don't like Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or Google+ and so on. If you live in this era and you have a job that is fully or partially dependent on technology then you need to start caring about your online presence.

Let's take it back 10-15 years. Let's say you are the type of a person that did NOT like reading daily newspaper. Let's assume that the local newspaper was writing something about you that is incorrect or fully taken out of context. How would you feel about it and would you even know until your friends told you about it?

Let's fast-forward back into the present. If you choose to ignore what is written about you online, then it will hurt you one day because the only presence you would have online are those few bad things that might NOT be even true.

Building your online presence and adding good content online with your name is what suppresses anything else online that could be unjustly ruining your name. 

It is not a 2-page resume that you have to prepare to apply for a job anymore; we are building and updating our resumes every day. The technology makes the world a big village.

- almirsCorner.com -
#tech #OnlinePresence #techTips #almirsCorner #socialmedia #reputation #technology 

Security Tips - Top 7 - Especially important during Holidays

As you will be doing a lot of online shopping, now is the time make sure that your computer is secured for online shopping. Here are easy top 7 tips that you should follow:

  1. Do not use the admin account on your computer. Even if you are the only user on this computer, always create a standard user and use the standard user for your day to day stuff.
  2. Install a good malware protection software and enable the firewall on your computer.
  3. Use a browser that is not directly tied to the heart of your computer. This prevents a lot of issues. I tend to use Firefox or Chrome.
  4. Install extensions/plugins in your browser to block the pop-ups. Use the popup blockers that have good reputation online.
  5. Pay attention to URL line in your browser and make sure that the word "https" is there instead of "http". This is important on the pages where you are entering your personal information and credit card information as the data is submitted encrypted over SSL/TLS.
  6. Stay away from websites that can email you your old password when you go through forgot-login journey. That means that they are either storing your password in clear text (THAT'S BAD) or they are just encrypting it in a way that allows the decryption. Passwords are supposed to be hashed so that nobody working for that company can decrypt your passwords.
  7. Do not click on links that you get in your emails.  

If you buy a Chromebook, you can skip tips #1, #2, and #3. I do all my shopping on my Chromebooks.

Happy shopping and Happy Holidays !!!

- almirsCorner.com -
#almirsCorner #securitytips #security #tech #shopping #holidays #staysecure #infosec #techTips 

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Car Modifications - Tip on Wheels

Ligthweight wheels give you more power to the ground.

Inertia = mass   x   radius^2

If Inertia goes down, then the power to ground increases.

Here is the link explaining this in details:

- almirsCorner.com -
#cars #wheels #lightweight #modifications #rims #almirsCorner

Car Modifications - Tip on Suspension

Car Modifications - Tip of the Day:

If the stock suspension and chassis on your car is already good enough to some degree, you may not need to go with the coilovers adjustable suspension which generally has more race-spec oriented springs and shocks. You may go for a custom combo setup getting good shocks and sport springs separately.

- almirsCorner.com -
#cars #modified #suspension #springs #shocks #lowering #almirsCorner

Traditional Manual Transmissions - Why? What's so special about it?

What is so special about the cars with traditional manual transmissions that we car enthusiasts can't explain and properly convey to our family members and friends?

I personally owned cars with a traditional manual transmission except the last car that I owned which was a shiftable automatic. I learned how to drive a car on a manual car and I thought it was cool. At that time, the automatic transmissions were not efficient from the gas mileage point of view and from the performance point of view. It was definitely a bad choice that car enthusiasts did not want to make. Then technology improved over the years and automatic transmissions got much better and the number of gears equaled the manuals. Torque converters on the automatic transmissions also improved drastically along with the electrical control over vacuum control. Then came the dual-clutch transmissions that are technically automated manuals that you can also shift without a clutch pedal.

I have driven cars with all these types of transmissions and they can all put a smile on your face. Good automatics and dual-clutch transmission cars will most likely give you more consistent 0-60 and 1/4 mile times, but is it all about drag times and lap times?

There is something about cars with manual transmissions that draws me to them. I believe that word is "engagement". Yes, most of us guys are scared of engagements, weddings and commitments but there is definitely one place where we like engagement and that is behind that steering wheel, clutch pedal and that shifter.

My last car was a Mini Cooper with a 6-speed shiftable automatic; no clutch pedal present. I guess I wanted to be part of this trend that I've noticed in Orange County and I decided to get this car with this type of transmission. I had a lot of fun with this car, but I need to point out that the first thing I had to do when I got the car was stop by a performance shop to install an aftermarket exhaust so that gear shifting can be more engaging. I owned the car for almost three years and you can see a lot of my videos on YouTube under "almirx101" username. I was able to enjoy and maneuver my Mini with confidence in traffic and canyon roads never worrying about mis-shifting or not down-shifting fast enough so that I can get enough power. The car was relatively fast and gear shifts were fast enough for me, but after almost three years I started realizing that it was too easy to drive it. I guess my honeymoon phase driving cars as if it is a video game was over.

I concluded that I was missing the manual transmission and the engagement that used to put a smile on my face even in Orange County rush-hour traffic. I sold this car and moved on, but moving on meant getting a car within a certain budget. There were only a few cars on my mind but 2007 and 2008 model Honda Fit was something I was leaning towards because of the numerous YouTube videos on this car praising it for its chassis and driving engagement. That's how I started my new adventure or should I say continue my old adventure in the world car enthusiasm. I got a 2008 Honda Fit with a 5-speed manual transmission.

I can spend another thousand words talking about handling, suspension, clutch feel and how it translates into engagement, but at the end of the day, you define the word "engaging" for yourself. Have fun driving and be safe.

- almirsCorner.com -
#cars #carreviews #manual #dualclutch #automatics #transmission #driving #engaging #gears #shiftknob 

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Cars and Coffee in Irvine - Dec 13, 2014

Today's Cars and Coffee was great. We had a heavy rain yesterday and even this morning we had wet roads, but car enthusiasts know what they need to do whether it is rain or shine.

Here is the link to the full album:
Cars and Coffee in Irvine - Dec 13, 2014

Here are a few top picks from me:

An old school Porsche 911 heavily modified:

Dodge Challenger SRT modified:

A classic Bentley:

- almirsCorner.com -
#cars #CarsAndDriver #CarCrazy #Irvine #OrangeCounty #California

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Healthy to change your programming language occasionally ?

I did a bit of programming in Python last night. It was fun to get back into it after a year break when I did my original Python tutorial. The factory patterns is something I have done many times in .NET using C#, but I wanted to see if I can develop it in Python without cheating and finding solutions online. It was a fun exercise. My ultimate goal is to set up a little framework for building enterprise-level applications. Having this accomplished in .NET, I really want to do this in Python. The requirement for myself is:

  • the framework needs to be n-tier
  • at least the client and server tiers to be able to run on two physical servers
  • each vertical slice or entity in this framework needs to be lightweight and it should ability to run as a service on its own

What I am trying to say that it is ok to step out of your comfort zone and attempt to build enterprise-level applications in a different programming language. It is healthy for us.

- almirsCorner.com -

#tech #programming #coding #code #Python #DotNet #Csharp #SoftwareDevelopment #SoftwareEngineering

DIY is becoming harder from day to day

I changed the battery on my Mini Cooper today. The engine bay is so compact that the battery is placed very close to the windshield under the plastic that is the base for the vipers. It is a 2009 model and I bought this car about 2+ years ago and this is the first time changing the battery. It took me a while to get to the battery. After I changed the battery, I quickly consulted with a tech at the Mini dealer and he told that I would need to have the car programmed to accept the new battery specifications. The computer needs to know when to start and stop charging based on the specifications.

Cars are getting more complicated these days and many components are controlled by the car computer. When my car could not start, I could not even put the car in Neutral to push it out the parking spot. These type of things make me get a car that has minimal electronics. Mini Cooper is just an example. I like my Mini Cooper, but I now totally understand why Magnus Walker sticks to 1960s and early 1970s Porsches.

DIY is becoming harder from day to day.

- almirsCorner.com -

#tech #diy #cars #ECU #computer #carbattery 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Reaching the milestone of 7,000+ views / month on my YouTube channel (almirx101)

Another milestone is reached on my YouTube channel http://www.YouTube.com/almirx101

Lifetime views: 152,276
Thank you for watching.

- almirsCorner.com -

#almirsCorner #almirx101 #youtube #milestone

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Software Design and IKEA - what do they have in common?

Software design and integration could be compared to building IKEA furniture as long as the granularity of your modules is down at the low-level as IKEA parts and configuration.

What is the sweet spot? You can only achieve it if you put the "Keep It Simple Stupid" hat on as you are designing your software. Don't worry; it is not an exact science.

- almirsCorner.com - 
#tech #programming #software #softwaredesign #architecture #coding #integration #softwareengineering 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Battery life of your smartphone - can it last 48 hours?

A lot of times we get frustrated how the battery life of our smartphones is not good enough to get us through the whole day. That is true if we use our smartphones as a computer replacement or as a tablet replacement.

If we used our phones for what they were originally invented then we would get much better results. I turned off notification services on my iPhone 5c and used it ONLY for:

  • quick phone calls
  • quick SMS messages
  • quick glance at emails
  • taking a few pictures

After 1.5 days, the battery is 88%.

We should have a 48-hour battery-life challenge.

- almirsCorner.com - 

#smartphone #iPhone #battery #batterylife #48hourBatteryChallenge #tech 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Gas prices are going down. Are you buying a truck or an economy car?

Gas prices are going down. You could afford that truck and the fuel for it even though your drive to work is 20+ miles. Right?

However, it is time to buy that economical car now because you can negotiate better price and it will pay off in the long term.

Here is a good Gas Cost Calculator that I put together to help you with these decisions:


Here is an example of comparing a random economical car with a random truck using the current gas price of $3.27 per gallon:

- almirsCorner.com -

#gas #MPG #gascost #fuelconsumption #consumption #cars #carreviews #calculator

How to purge files on your server with automated batch script?

If you are constantly running out of space on your server and you need to purge older files that you don't need, then here is an example of how to do this with batch scripts on Windows platform:


- almirsCorner.com -

#batch #script #batchscript #forfiles #commandline #command #dos #doscommands #purgefiles #delete #tech #scripting #programming #devops 

Monday, October 27, 2014

Invoking a batch script on a remote machine using a script on the client

I have been doing software development for 17 years. I started on Unix platform with C++ and then moved to C++ on Microsoft platform and eventually transitioned to .NET and C# programming. In the meantime scripting has always been a fun thing to do on the side. Scripting is just means of accomplishing something quickly in order to simplify the development for the team and the deployments for the team. For example, some of the scripts that I will eventually share with you are:

  • Quick scripts that deploy code to a server and start/stop services
  • Scripts that monitor the changes on the server throughout the day
  • Scripts that notify you when there is a change on the server and what change it was
  • Scripts that monitor the logs for your application and send you the daily summary on the type of errrors
  • etc.....

The following example is how you can start scripts on a server by sending a signal from the client computer. There are many different ways to implement. This is one way of doing.


- almirsCorner.com -

#batch #batchscript #scripting #doscommand #commandline #programming #devOps #automation

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Cars & Coffee in Irvine - Oct 18, 2014

Here is the album with a few pictures:

Album - Cars and Coffee in Irvine on Oct 18, 2014

- almirsCorner.com -

#cars #CarsAndCoffee #Irvine #OrangeCounty #SoCal #California 

Normally Aspirated Engines - Are they becoming collectibles?

Have we reached the era where normally aspirated engines become collectibles?

Everybody is introducing turbocharged engines across all models of their cars. Benz and BMW have done it. Mini has done it. I now hear rumors about Porsche doing it and base Carrera having 2.9L turbocharged engine. I understand that reducing the size of the engine and adding a turbocharger improves efficiency and gets you better gas mileage. On the other hand we have some Japanese manufacturers (Mazda, Honda, Toyota) who are sticking to NA engines and they are building high-compression engines which also increases efficiency and improves gas mileage. 

So the NA engines are still here to stay.

- almirsCorner.com - 

#turbo #cars #Porsche #Benz #BMW #VW #carreview #turbocharger #MPG #fuelconsumption 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Programming - How good are you in null checking?

We all have written code where we did not do proper null checking and in special scenarios it ends up getting "null object reference" errors.

This post is just to remind myself and you about this so you can think about it as you are coding. I hope that the following video will resonate with you. Thanks.


- almirsCorner.com -

#programming #programming101 #softwaredevelopment #null #NullObjectReferenceError #code #coding #coding101 #tech

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cars and Coffee - Sep 27, 2014

The link for the album: Cars and Coffee - Sep 27, 2014

1st Place:   Porsche 356

2nd Place:  BMW 2002

3rd Place:  Swag Van

- almirsCorner.com - 
#cars #CarsAndCoffee #Irvine #OrangeCounty #SoCal

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Reaching the milestone of 6,000+ views / month on my YouTube channel (almirx101)

Another milestone is reached on my YouTube channel http://www.YouTube.com/almirx101

Thank you for watching.

- almirsCorner.com -

#almirsCorner #almirx101 #youtube #milestone

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Comment your code, or NOT?

There is a saying: "Real programmers say to not comment your code. They say if it is hard to code, then it is hard to read". 

However, the problem is when bad/average programmers follow this directions believing they are real/great programmers; then you end up with unmaintainable code that does NOT have comments

- almirsCorner.com -

#programming #coding #code #codereview #codecomments #softwaredevelopment #softwareengineering #tech #almirsCorner 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Doing technical things right and not for the sake of process. Right?

Doing technical things for the sake of process is wrong, but doing technical things right that enables trace-ability in your process is awesome. This saves money, time and your end customers win.

- almirsCorner.com -

#tech #SDLC #PDLC #softwaredevelopment #softwareengineering #almirsCorner

Asking questions at work??

A lot of employees are afraid to ask questions because they are worried that their skills are being judged by the quality of the questions they ask.

Some employees ask questions trying to impress somebody and it does not add value to their overall effort.

Some do it just right.

As long as you have the right intention that will be felt and noticed in the way you convey that message/question. Also, if the question is really you asking for help, then doing the right preparation for the question will save you and the other person a lot of time. Do your homework. Check the items A, B, and C that are typically checked for that type of question prior to approaching somebody for a favor.

At the end of the day, you and the person answering your question are most likely on the same team and you have the same end goals and those goals are to keep the end customers happy.

Keep in mind that it is always better to over-communicate than to under-communicate. 

- almirsCorner.com - 

#tech #work #teamwork #coworkers #almirsCorner

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Some people get motivated by being criticized and some people by being praised .....

Some people get motivated by being criticized and some people by being praised. Being praised definitely does not demotivate you. Therefore, to motivate people in a group environment and make a change, one should not criticize! Right? Or not?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Dilemma about making your presence felt - which way to do it?

There are two schools of thought on how to make your presence noticed:

  • Strive hard to make your presence noticed with an explicit plan for it. 
  • Work hard, work smart and let your actions speak for themselves and rely on your management team (as your spokesperson) to recognize it and to convey it upwards.
I don't think anybody is 100% one or the other. We probably follow some combination of the two.

Which one do you believe in?

- almirsCorner.com -

#career #job

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Dumb Terminals and The Cloud - Is this the future?

If cloud computing continues at this pace, I predict that in 5 years most of us will be walking around with laptops/devices that are dumb terminals and that all the major processing will be done in the cloud. Wouldn't corporations want this so that their employees don't anymore walk around with laptops and a lot of confidential data on them. If you keep it in the cloud then it can be governed better as long as your cloud is secure. All the corporations already require you to VPN into their network if you want to do your work; so taking it one step further and your laptops being dumb terminals is where this is heading.

- almirsCorner.com -

#cloud #cloudcomputing #dumbterminals #software #tech #almirsCorner 

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Team Collaboration with OneNote 2013

The following video on my YouTube channel shows how you can create notebooks on a network drive within your company, share notes with your teammates, host a Wiki, exchange project notes. It is all about improving team collaboration. This is a great solution as most of the companies do not allow the information to leave company's servers and PCs; therefore, you can use OneNote and create your notebooks on a network drive that your technical operations team backs up and maintains on regular basis. You may ask "why not use SharePoint". My answer to that would be:  if your company already invested into SharePoint, you can use it, but nothing beats the search functionality within OneNote and I mean nothing.


- almirsCorner.com -

#almirsCorner #almirx101 #OneNote #OneNote2013 #TeamCollaboration #Microsoft #OneDrive #Tutorial #notetaking #Wiki #SharePoint #SharePointAlternative 

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Cars and Coffee in Irvine - August 30, 2014

This morning's Cars and Coffee in Irvine was packed. It's been a while since I have gone, and it is good to be back. Waking up early morning is not that tough when the show is this great. There was a good selection of old school Japanese, American muscle and exotic cars.

Album Link (All Pictures)

Here is the preview with a few pictures:

- almirsCorner.com

#CarsAndCoffee #Irvine #OrangeCounty #carshow #cars #Porsche #Porsche911 #GT3 #Datsun #Benz #AMG #McLaren #MiniCooper #AcuraNSX #Jeep #BMWM4 #BMW2002 

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Are you paying attention ?

A lot of times you wonder if somebody actually read the document or information that you shared with them. You may spend a lot of time putting this information together, and you expect that the information is to some degree read or analyzed. This is easy to manage in smaller teams because you establish that mutual trust and respect, but it gets harder in larger teams that constantly change size based on demand.

If you are noticing that a certain individual or a group of people are not being professional about it, there is an easy way to confirm this suspicion. 

Use a tool or a cloud solution that can tell you if a document was downloaded from the link you shared in the email.


Provide a bad link to your document. If this person or these co-workers never read your email and tried to open the document, they will not realize that you provided them a bad link :)

I did not intentionally do these steps, but it happened by accident and I discovered a few things :)

- almirsCorner.com - 

Chromebooks / Cloud Solutions - Simple tip for students to make their Chromebooks better primary computers

Whether we like it or not, the cloud solutions are becoming a norm for a lot of us from day to day. Chromebooks are just a hardware platform that supports this direction and Google is not slowing down with it.

What do we need in order to find Chromebooks useful:

  • Internet connection if we want to properly utilize the features of ChromeOS (i.e. Chromebook HP 14" comes with 2-year data plan through T-Mobile 200Mb/month).
  • Offline Chrome App support in case you lose internet connection

These are not really the tips. This is just the bare minimum you need.

A lot of times you would want to use a cloud word processor or a cloud spreadsheet editor, but you know that your school requires your documents to be submitted in certain file formats. First, the school might not want to accept the link to your document stored in the cloud. Second, they will want your homework to be submitted for example in Microsoft format.

There is a simple solution.

When you are working in your GoogleDrive or OneDrive, both solutions have an option to download the documents in the Microsoft format. You can save the file on the local drive of your Chromebook and then email it to your teachers or professors.

If you are running out of space on your SSD on your Chromebook, then a simple solution is to get a USB thumb-drive. I happen to use a 32Gb SanDisk that is so tiny that you can barely tell that anything is connected to your laptop.

Have fun chromebooking :)

- almirsCorner.com - 

#tech #Chromebook #GoogleDrive #OneDrive #CloudSolutions #students #education #cloud #CloudComputing #BackToSchool 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Reaching the milestone of 5,000 views / month on my YouTube channel (almirx101)

Another milestone is reached on my YouTube channel http://www.YouTube.com/almirx101

Thank you for watching.

- almirsCorner.com -

#almirsCorner #almirx101 #youtube #milestone

Monday, August 11, 2014

RM Auctions - Pre-Event Pictures - Monterey (August 2014)

It is a beautiful day in Monterey, CA. Here is a link to the album with the RM Auctions pre-event pictures. They are preparing it. The viewing is on Wednesday and the auction is on Thursday.

ALBUM to all car auctions in Monterey:

Preview to the album:

- almirsCorner.com -

#cars #auctions #carauctions #RMAuctions #supercars #classiccars #Monterey #Porsche #Ferrari #Ford #Mercedes 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Agile Teams and Professional Sports Teams - What do they have in common?

One agile team could be anywhere between 3-8 people, but what do you do when you have multiple agile teams of 3-8 people that have the same overall/company goals within your division?

I was sitting on my couch a few days ago and thinking about this and I think I found a very good comparison. Multiple agile teams in a single company division can be compared to professional sports teams within a professional sport association.

Let's use NBA (National Basketball Association) as an example to do some comparisons.


All teams in NBA have two main goals:
  • Win and make their coaches and team owners happy. Bring in spectators and revenue for the team.
  • Follow the rules of NBA and have NBA win overall in rankings, popularity and revenue.
All agile teams within your company division also have two main goals:
  • Deliver projects on time with quality while meeting and exceeding the expectations of product management.
  • Deliver for the overall company in coordination with other agile teams.

Team Members?

Each NBA team consists of a few superstars, a few solid contributors and a few rookie contributors that are hungry to prove themselves. They all have the same goal and that goal is to win as a team.

Each agile team consists of a few exceptional performers, a few solid contributors and a few juniors who are hungry to prove themselves. They all have the same goal and that goal is to deliver on time meeting and exceeding expectations.

Resource Managers or Sport Agents?

NBA has agents that represent multiple players and a single agent could be representing players from multiple teams. It is in their interest to best represent their players and players have to be playing well in order to give agents enough reason to properly represent them.

Your company division may have a group of resource managers and a single resource manager could be representing/managing employees from different agile teams. Employees have to do great work to impress their managers and managers need to be representing employees to best support them in their career growth.

Trading season?
Everybody is on a different career journey.

NBA players have different journeys. Some players like the team and city they represent and they like renewing their contract with the team if they played well and if their agent represents them well in front of the team owner. Some NBA players play well, but decide not to renew their contracts and decide to explore other options as they and their agents believe that is good for their career. There are also opposite cases where the team owner decides that a player is not a good match for them and they decide to find somebody else in exchange. So NBA introduced the concept of trading in the middle of the season and also at the end of the season when contracts expire. The definition of trading is that you get a player in exchange for another player from a different team. It obviously gets more complicated when multiple players are involved, but you get my point.

Employees among agile teams have different journeys. Some employees may like the team and the type of work that their team is performing and they decide to stay with the team. Some employees who perform well believe that it is good for their career to change agile teams after giving the team enough contribution. A resource manager representing an employee could also recommend or arrange for that employee to be moved to another agile which would be a better fit. Therefore, a company division running multiple agile teams could introduce the concept trading to allow employees to grow their careers and to find the best matches for the agile teams.

Competing against each other is NOT in common, but it is similar.

NBA teams compete against each other, but at the end of the day, they are all part of the same community.

Agile teams within your company division should not necessarily compete against each other but the spirit of competition can be channeled in different ways for their team to exceed expectations and deliver.


Use some of these similarities and go have fun with it. You and your company can go as far as naming your teams by cities or by the names of teams in NBA/NFL/MLB/MLS and etc. That will make work that much more fun.

- almirsCorner.com - 

#tech #agile #scrum #sprints #agilemethodology #incremental #iterative #PDLC #SDLC #requirements #products #productowner #softwareengineering #softwaredevelopment 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Car Modifications ...... in Photoshop

This is all about doing your homework before spending money on the real car modifications. I am just an average user of Photoshop and I am using the features of Photoshop to achieve the end goal; I am an engineer and the engineering behind the suspension parts are number #1, but the presentation is what sells. Another goal is to decide what the car will look like before making the next step in the modification process.

The first example is 997 Porsche Carrera S.
- first picture is the stock photo
- 2nd picture is the car lowered about 2.5"
- 3rd picture: 2.5" lowering with BBS wheels
- 4th picture: 2.5" lowering with Volk Racing wheels

The second car is 2010 VW GTI.
- 1st picture:  Stock suspensions with aftermarket wheels
- 2nd picture: Extreme lowering job

The third car is 2009 Mini Cooper:
- 1st picture: Stock photo with Mini factory sports suspension.
- 2nd picture: Extreme lowering (2-3")

- almirsCorner.com - 

#cars #CarModifications #mods #CarMods #lowering #lowered #suspension #race #racing #Porsche #VW #Mini #Cooper #Carrera #GTI #VWGTI #vdub