Archive for April, 2010


Passed!

Today I took the exam for my CIW Database Design Specialist course, and I’m pleased to say that I passed with flying colours! I find it hard to believe that I’ve managed to actually accumulate that much information about relational databases, but somehow I did it!

Now to actually get out of my existing customer services role and into the IT industry! I’m still studying as I’ve got a lot more work to do for the rest of my CIW Master Enterprise Developer certification, but this means I’ve got a lot more options open to me – database administration’s a possibility but really I’m more interested in web development. I’ve got to study JavaScript next, then Perl, then PHP and classic ASP before moving on to Java.

Election time

As you may be aware, election time is looming in the UK. As someone who considers themselves old-school Labour (as opposed to Tony Blair’s New Labour) there isn’t really a party I feel I can align myself with anymore, so I tend to vote more based on issues than habit. I have, however, always felt that if you don’t vote you can’t complain about the government so I make a point of always doing so.

Like many others, I was appalled by the way the Digital Economy Act was pushed through by a Parliament that clearly didn’t understand its full implications. Its primary architect, Peter Mandelson, clearly didn’t understand a thing about how the digital economy works. This piece of legislation is ill-conceived at best and downright scandalous at worst.

So I’m very pleased to learn that the Liberal Democrats are calling for it to be repealed. I’m even more pleased to learn that the Lib Dems have experienced a significant surge in support. Realistically I don’t think they are likely to win the election, but there is a fair chance that they may gain sufficient votes to force the majority party to enter into a coalition with them, meaning they may well get the opportunity to repeal the Digital Economy Act. Plus, there’s the possibility of the extremely capable Vince Cable (who unlike many other politicians actually realised that people taking on unprecedented levels of personal debt was a bad idea) being Chancellor of the Exchequer.

I have a strong dislike of Tories in general, and David Cameron doesn’t actually appear to stand for anything much – he’s one of the most superficial politicians in government at the moment. I still remember the shambles of the last Tory government and there’s no way I’d want to repeat that.

While I would love the Pirate Party to be standing for election in South Norfolk, sadly they aren’t. While the Green Party have also said they are opposed to the DEA, they remain a fringe party. I feel that the Labour Party have had their own way for too long and it would be good to either get rid of them or make them share power so they don’t have the opportunity to force objectionable legislation through.

I’m therefore throwing my support behind the Liberal Democrats. I intend to vote for them, and if you’re concerned about the consequences of the Digital Economy Act too, I recommend you vote for them as well. They’re the only major party who actually seem to understand the issues at hand. Hamstringing the digital economy to benefit the analogue one is not the way to guarantee this country’s future, and only the Lib Dems seem to have grasped this.

As you may be aware, I recently started moderating comments as I’ve had problems with spammers in the past. I felt it might be helpful to set out a more formal set of guidelines for comments so people know what I’m willing to accept. I’ve posted them to the right.
Essentially they boil down to the following:

  1. English language only (this is an English-language blog, after all, and I’ve had a lot of Chinese spam comments on here). I don’t care how bad your English is (seriously, I have seen some terrible written English from native speakers, so don’t worry too much if you’re not good).
  2. If you’re clearly just spamming and quite blatantly have nothing to contribute to the discussion I will not approve your comment.
  3. Finally, I will not accept any comments that are hateful. I’ve got no problem with colourful language but anything I consider genuinely nasty or unpleasant will not be approved.

As long as you obey those rules, I’m happy to accept your comments here, so please don’t be dissuaded from commenting by the fact that comments are moderated.