vText by Kung Fu Rabbits, LLC

THE BEST WAY AVAILABLE TO SEND AND RECEIVE SMS ON THE IPHONE.

JUST SAY “TELL JASON I’LL MEET YOU AT STARBUCKS IN 15MINUTES” OR REPLY TO JASON’S CONVERSATION BY SAYING “I’LL MEET YOU AT STARBUCK IN 15 MINUTES” AND YOUR VOICE WILL AUTOMATICALLY BE TRANSCRIBED TO TEXT AND SENT TO JASON! WHAT COULD BE MORE EASY WHEN YOU’RE ON THE GO?

VTEXT IS THE EASIEST TO USE VOICE TO TEXT SMS APPLICATION ON THE MARKET!

KEY FEATURES INCLUDE:

  1. UNLIMITED VOICE TRANSCRIPTIONS
  2. UNLIMITED SMS TO ALL YOUR CONTACTS (U.S., ONLY)
  3. USES THE MOST ACCURATE FREE-FORM TRANSCRIPTION SERVICE AVAILABLE
  4. RECIPIENTS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO HAVE VTEXT
  5. USE CONTACT NICKNAME OR FULL NAME
  6. TYPING ABILITY IF YOU’RE IN A PLACE WHERE YOU CAN’T SPEAK OUT LOUD
  7. PRIVATE AND SECURE SINCE IT USES COMPUTERS TO CONVERT MESSAGES, NOT HUMANS
  8. MESSAGES SENT FROM YOUR PHONE NUMBER @VTXT.MOBI SO RECIPIENTS KNOW WHO YOU ARE (OTHER SERVICES PROVIDE A RANDOM PHONE NUMBER FOR THIS)

Zip Code Radius Search using MySQL

I had a project that required me to get a list of zip codes within a certain distance from a given zip code.

First, you are going to need to get a database that maps zip codes to longitude & latitude.

Zip code databases:

  1. Free from: http://www.populardata.com/downloads.html
  2. 5$ from http://www.teamredline.com/zc/

Next, you need to create a MySQL function to calculate distances between two longitudes and latitudes:

DROP   FUNCTION  IF EXISTS `GetDistance`

CREATE   FUNCTION  `GetDistance`(
lat1  numeric (9,6),
lon1  numeric (9,6),
lat2  numeric (9,6),
lon2  numeric (9,6)
)  RETURNS   decimal (10,5)
BEGIN
DECLARE  x  decimal (20,10);
DECLARE  pi  decimal (21,20);
SET  pi = 3.14159265358979323846;
SET  x = sin( lat1 * pi/180 ) * sin( lat2 * pi/180  ) + cos(
lat1 *pi/180 ) * cos( lat2 * pi/180 ) * cos(  abs ( (lon2 * pi/180) -
(lon1 *pi/180) ) );
SET  x = atan( ( sqrt( 1- power( x, 2 ) ) ) / x );
RETURN  ( 1.852 * 60.0 * ((x/pi)*180) ) / 1.609344;
END

You will now need to create a MySQL stored procedure that accepts a zip code and a radius and returns a list of zip codes that fall within the given radius:

DROP   PROCEDURE  IF EXISTS `GetNearbyZipCodes`

CREATE   PROCEDURE  `GetNearbyZipCodes`(
zipbase  varchar (6),
range  numeric (15)
)
BEGIN
DECLARE  lat1  decimal (5,2);
DECLARE  long1  decimal (5,2);
DECLARE  rangeFactor  decimal (7,6);
SET  rangeFactor = 0.014457;
SELECT  latitude,longitude  into  lat1,long1  FROM  tbl_zipcodes  WHERE  zipcode = zipbase;
SELECT  B.zipcode
FROM  tbl_zipcodes  AS  B
WHERE
B.latitude  BETWEEN  lat1-(range*rangeFactor)  AND  lat1+(range*rangeFactor)
AND  B.longitude  BETWEEN  long1-(range*rangeFactor)  AND  long1+(range*rangeFactor)
AND  GetDistance(lat1,long1,B.latitude,B.longitude)  <= range;
END

Lastly you need to make a call to this stored procedure:

CALL GetNearbyZipCodes( '85254' , 30
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Upgrading Windows 7 from BETA to RC1

Having read several times now that you can’t upgrade Windows 7 from BETA to RC1, I decided it would be a good idea to post the “how-to” instructions. Obviously many people are confused here.

To upgrade from beta you need to:

  1. Extract the .iso contents to a storage location you wish to run the upgrade from (a bootable flash drive or a directory on any partition on the machine running the old build).
  2. Browse to the sources directory.
  3. Open the file cversion.ini in a text editor like Notepad.
  4. Modify the MinClient build number to a value lower than the down-level build. For example, change 7100 to 7000.
  5. Save the file in place with the same name.
  6. Run setup.exe like you would normally and the version check will be bypassed.

More TCP Connections for your Torrents

If you’re using a torrent client for video streaming, or other swarm content, here’s a neat trick for increasing your PC’s throughput.

http://www.downloadsquad.com/2009/04/14/patch-windows-7-tcpip-sys-for-faster-torrent-downloads/

UNC Charlotte Announces New SaaS Conference

On Apr-21, 2009 the University of North Carolina at Charlotte will be hosting a SaaS Conference. The conference will consist of several key speakers, a discussion panel and probably more.

As we’ve done in the past, my friend Igor Jablakov, of Yap, and I will be participating in the panel discussion.

—–

NC Charlotte’s College of Computing and Informatics is pleased to announce the first of its Emerging Issues in Information Technology Series. In response to remarkable innovations in the past years in new methods of delivering software via the web, UNC Charlotte has selected Software as a Service as the first topic for the conference series.  Software as a Service (SaaS) is growing fast as a means to acquire needed information technology power without the large front-end development and hardware expense normally associated with new applications. The benefits are huge, yet the challenges are not for the unknowing. Security, legal, performance, and technical issues are among the expertise needed by a savvy buyer.

The conference program will be divided into topics of general interest to all attendees, technology topics and business related topics. The audience for this conference will include prospective customers of SaaS solutions (including non technical business personnel), application services providers, infrastructure providers, technology providers, and associated support providers.

This conference will be held on Tuesday, April 21, 2009 on the UNC Charlotte Campus. It will start at 8:30 AM and conclude at 4:30 PM.  Outstanding speakers will translate this challenge with must-have information. CEU and CPE credits will be offered.

The speaker roster is an outstanding group to include the following:

1.      Monty Blight-Corporate VP of Managed Services, Peak-10.
2.      Ted Claypoole-Senior Member, Intellectual Property Practice Group, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice.
3.      Lawrence Cruciana- founder and president of Corporate Information Technologies        (CIT).
4.      Jay Dominick, Ph.D.-Associate Provost for Information and Technology Services and CIO, UNC Charlotte.
5.      Forrest Frazier, Partner, Grant Thornton LLP.
6.      Connie Kellen-Master’s Student, College of Computing and Informatics at UNC Charlotte.
7.      Sharon Mertz-Senior Analyst, Gartner.
8.      Peter Murphy-SVP, CTO, TIAA-CREF.
9.      Shawn Murray-Microsoft Director, Cloud Computing-Southeast.
10.  Ric Telford- IBM-Vice President-Cloud Computing.
11.  Christopher “Kip” Turco Chief Operating Officer for Hosted Solutions.
12.  Josh Wolff-Regional Manager for Hosted Solutions in the Charlotte market.

To register for the event click here.  All of those registering before April 14th will receive a $30 discount off of the regular price.

This event is being sponsored by Charlotte Research Institute, Bank of America, Duke Energy, Wachovia Bank, Hosted Solutions, TIAA-Cref, Mariner, Frontier Capital,  North Carolina Technology Association, Microsoft, Business Innovation and Growth Council, Womble Carlyle Sandridge and Rice, Queen Associates, Peak-10, Blue Cross Blue Shield of South Carolina, and The Training Company.

About the College of Computing and Informatics

The College of Computing and Informatics provides academic programs in computer science, software and information systems, information technology, and bioinformatics. It is also the home to leading research centers and institutes, including the Center for Digital Identity and Cyber Defense Research (DICyDER), the Bioinformatics Research Center, the Charlotte Visualization Center, the Diversity in Information Technology Institute (DITI), the eBusiness Technology Institute, and the Software Solutions Lab.

About UNC Charlotte

A public research university, UNC Charlotte is the fourth largest campus among the 17 institutions of the University of North Carolina system.  It is the largest institution of higher education in the Charlotte region. The University offers 18 doctoral programs, 62 master’s degree programs, and 90 programs leading to bachelor’s degrees.  Fall 2008 enrollment exceeds 23,300 students, including almost 5,200 graduate students.

Introduction to Machine Learning

Continuing my long held interest in Machine Learning, I came across a great lectuire by Eric Xing, of Carnegie Mellon University, in which he provides the most clearest definition of Machine Learning, in my opinion, yet:

Machine Learning seeks to develop therios and computer systems for

  • representing;
  • classifying, clustering and recognizing;
  • reasoning under uncertainty;
  • predicting;
  • and reacting to

complex, real world data, based on the system’s own experience with data, and (hopefully) under a unified model or mathmatical framework, that

  • can be formally charcterized and analyzed
  • can take into account human prior knowledge
  • can generalize and adapt across data and domains
  • can operate automatically and autonomously
  • and can be interpreted and perceived by [a] human

You can view his leacture here.

Hosted Solutions

A few years back our company decided to start running our managed research and analytics infrastructure out of a data center in Charlotte, NC named Hosted Solutions. Of course, the were nice enough to write that up in the local paper.

If you’re in the Charlotte area and looking for a great mixed co-location & managed host. Give em a shot.