Thoughts on my time

I need to get back to blogging on regular basis. Its way to long since my last entry - and a lot of that is about time.

I'm a great believer in that THERE IS time in day - its just how you choose to use that time. It comes down to a matter of priorities and which ones matter most in the use of that time.

Wonders if I should be applying the lean principles to my life ;)

Anyway, so I'm going to prioritize blogging a bit more. There are also a few other things I'm trying to prioritize in my life.

Lose weight

I'm way too heavy at the moment. So, I've set myself the target of getting to 13 stones by the time I'm 40 (just over a stone to lose by February 2015). Luckily my 17 year old lad is getting into running so that encourages me to follow along (even if it is at a lot slower pace and taking every short cut I can).

Visual Studio extensions

I've recently wanted to automated some resource checked with Visual Studio - primarily to see if resources are actually still in use (large legacy project). I'm sure there are tools out there to do this already, but I thought it would be a great excuse to learn a bit more about producing extensions for Visual Studio.

I did some work on Visual Studio automation about 6 years ago (mainly wizard work). But never build any extensions.

Initial works seems to show that Visual Studio is still rather complex to extend - a lot of COM interops involved. I would have thought that it would a lot simpler in this day and age.

Should be some great stuff to blog about.

Specflow and Selenium testing

Both Specflow (BDD platform) and Selenium are great tools - and I'm keen to get a better understanding of them. Anything that can assist with Continuous Delivery is great in my book.

I've been doing some preliminary work with then, so hopefully I'll be able to blog about it in the next few weeks.


I'm not a designer, so Bootstrap looks like a great tool to have a go with. I'd like to apply it as a common theme across both my website (which is current just a dumping ground for experimental code) and the blog.

Cordova Scheduler Plugin

I've been working on a plugin as a favor - still some work to do, but its probably not far from being production ready.

Source can be found here ->

There are some additional issues that I want to fix and to automate my regression tests (based on my previous work).

Cordova Availability Monitor Plugin

Again, another plugin that I've started as a favor. This is bit earlier in its development than the Scheduler plugin, but probably has more applications. I'd like to extend at some point to produce an availability checker app (a poor mans Pingdom).

Source can be found here ->

The plugin is dependent on the Background Service plugin - which I will want to extend to allow for multiple timers.

Again I'd like to automate my regression tests - but this might be rather more complicated due to its nature.

Cordova Background Service plugin

I'm rather concerned at the moment about KitKat and the problem with services. There appears to be a large number of developers raising the problem of KitKat killing but not restarting your service. This seems be at odds with the Android specification, but there may well be a good reason for the change. Unfortunately there hasn't been any official response from Google.

I'm following this issue tracker ->

Management blog posting

There are a few topics that I'd like to get down on (virtual) paper. Hopefully get those out in the next few months.


I've been reading the Malazan Book of the Fallen series for almost a year now. Its a series of ten books and I'm currently on Book 6, The Bonehunters. Its a fantastic series, with a huge cast of characters, locations and plots.

Again I'd like to spend more time reading this - so easy to lose track when I'm dipping in and out.

Right, blog done - of to fix issue

About the author:

Mark Taylor is an experience IT Consultant passionate about helping his clients get better ROI from their Software Development.

He has over 20 years Software Development experience - over 15 of those leading teams. He has experience in a wide variety of technologies and holds certification in Microsoft Development and Scrum.

He operates through Red Folder Consultancy Ltd.