Things That Are Consuming My Time

I’ve been very busy the past few months and can’t seem to make much progress in getting things done to reduce my work load. Therefore a blog is in order to explain why. First, the USPS changed their shipping rates and broke the web service that provides International Shipping Rates. This is a problem for many e-commerce shopping carts including Storefront 6.0. I have developed a VBScript to test the USPS shipping API without using Storefront so I can determine exactly what the XML requests and responses are. Storefront does not provide a clue as to why the attempt to get the shipping rate fails. Unfortunately I am still unable to resolve this problem because USPS is not documenting their web services very well.

I’ve also been using Visual Studio 2005 a lot more now so it has been necessary for me to learn all the new features. I spent a lot of time learning the various debugging options and documented many obscure features. I still use Visual Studio 2003 for many ASP.NET 1.1 projects so I’ve also expanded my knowledge of Visual Studio 2003. I’m a real power user of Visual Studio now!

In addition to Visual Studio 2005, I’ve been studying C#. Many of the programming tasks that I know how to do in VB.NET have had to be translated into C#. Sometimes I learn how to do something in C# and then need to translate it into VB.NET. And sometimes I need to figure out how to do something in NET 1.1 that I’ve learned how to do in NET 2.0. So I’ve been kept busy juggling two programming languages and two application framework versions! I would like to convert all my ASP.NET 1.1 projects into ASP.NET 2.0 and reduce my use of Visual Studio 2003. Unfortunately, this requires a time consuming upgrade of Storefront 6.0.

I recently bought California Software’s BABY/400 to help me learn RPG. Unfortunately, the BABY/400 operating system emulator is pretty rare now and there is virtually no documentation on it to be found on the Internet. I have to struggle to figure out how to do the simplest things. It takes hours of trial and error. I have not even managed to run a RPG program yet.

I hope to decrease the pace of my studying as I gain more skill with Visual Studio 2005, C# and RPG. I’ve pretty much exhausted the Visual Studio 2005 subject and C# only occasionally requires some additional study now. I still need to spend a lot more time on BABY/400 and RPG but I’ve made considerable progress in that area.

This blog is now getting over 600 SPAM comments a day! The spammers have really ruined text blogging. I waste a lot of time deleting email notifications of spam comments so I have turned that off. If you want to leave a legitimate comment on my blog you should email me so I can find your comment to approve it.

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