Android comes to WebSphere Commerce

That’s right, as of Feature Pack 4 for WebSphere Commerce 7 you get a full blown Android based application for your store front. This little addition should not be taken lightly, WebSphere Commerce shops will now, out of the box, get many of the cool features you see in other native mobile applications – like check-in, coupons, and screen resolutions for both mobile phones and tablets.

With key features like pick-up in store, ship to address and cross channel inventory, the application is very feature rich. The marketing team can even send out emails, ads, and coupons on check-in events – talk about precision marketing!

Check out a couple of the screen shots from the Madisons B2C starter store:

Removing the ZeroAccess rootkit virus

Over the past four days I, on and off, had to look at my kids computer. The basic symptoms were “every time I search for something in Google I get redirected to another site” and then it moved on to “the internet is not working…at all“. When I first looked at it I noticed a strange looking executable named “2398764521:2143489.exe” or something like that in the process explorer. The colon is a clear sign this is not a normal process. I then searched the Windows registry and under services found the EXE under a folder named “2728” – once again…strange. I attempted a few things first, removing the entries, rebooting, and seeing if the EXE would disappear. I searched all start up areas in the system and registry and cleaned them out…nothing seemed to work. I then did the same process in Safe mode – to no avail the virus was still there after a standard launch.

I then searched and searched and finally found this article. The symptoms were identical, was this the ZeroAccess virus? I downloaded the tool, TDSS killer, to see if it could remove the virus. I had to download it on another computer as the kids computer could not access the internet with any of the three installed browsers. I then copied the tool over to a USB stick and renamed it to a “.com” file as directed in the article.

The tool found three variations of ZeroAccess on the computer and cleaned them up. I was shocked how easy the tool was to use and it looks like everything is fine now. I just had to blog about this and share the experience.

Using Tweet Effect to master Twitter

I use Twitter to primarily promote and talk about work related topics – Eclipse, Commerce, Java, Dojo, etc and have noticed I get 1-3 new followers a day but I also noticed my followers count never really grew much. So either these were people who followed me and then stopped following me or I was also losing followers at the same rate.

Welcome Tweet Effect.

Tweet Effect let’s you see when people follow and stop following you. You don’t get Twitter Id’s but you do get to see what Tweets win and lose followers. Check it out, the data is pretty interesting.

XPages based commerce site?

You see “commerce‘ based technologies popping up everywhere these days. People are always trying to get the cheapest solution with the most function. You can even get a commerce plugin for both Drupal and WordPress – two very popular and free content management systems. The interesting thing about those plugins is the fact you get content management (CMS) for free and some commerce function on the front end- because those solutions are based on content management. If you were to buy WebSphere Commerce today, you would most likely have another piece of software be the CMS engine behind the scenes – like IBM Workplace Web Content Management.

Those are definitely viable options but I can also see XPages making a play here because of its document model in Lotus Domino. It excels in “content management” and then using the Web Services in WebSphere Commerce could make for a good solution in the end. Getting the CMS side of Domino mixed with the Commerce based engine might be a good mix. I am not sure about total cost comparison in the end but something tells me a Domino server is cheaper than a Portal server – maybe not. This might be a good opportunity for a business partner or even an open source project. I would be interested to hear some thoughts on this if you have any.

Symantec C++

Long ago on a computer, almost two decades ago, I used the Symantec C++ compiler. I only made it through version 6 and 7 and eventually moved on to Microsoft C++. The Symantec IDE was way ahead of its time and at first using MSDEV was a struggle. Today, MSDEV is arguably one of the best IDE’s. Why am I writing about this? I was cleaning out my old software CD’s and I must have had a dozen copies of the compiler because I was on the subscription model. Made me think how far IDE’s have come over the past 20 years. Comparing that software to Eclipse is almost laughable. Looks like I should also get rid of about 30 books on software development – most of which are totally out of date, with only a few keepers.

Makes me also think what software we use today will be laughable in twenty years…