Tech eBooks and Videos On Sale

I am a computer guy in real life. It is what I do for a living – what I do to put food on the table and keep a roof over our heads. And, it is a constantly changing field so I am always looking for educational materials. Those materials can be expensive though, so when I find a good deal I jump on it and also try to pass it on.

To that end, for those geekily inclined among us, I just heard of a very good deal. Packt Publishing, who produce a ton of great programing, sys admin and other computer books, is repeating their $5 eBook Bonanza again. To quote them, “Following on from the success of last year’s festive offer, the publisher will be celebrating the holiday season with an even bigger $5 Bonanza.”

From December 19th, customers will be able to get any ebook or video for just $5. This sale covers every title in the 1700+ range and customers can grab as many as they like until January 3rd 2014 – more information is available at

And if you are a fellow WordPress user, make sure to check out their collection of WordPress ebooks. I have also read their books on Drupal and Python, among others.


$5 Tech ebook and Video Bonanza


BarCamp – Introduction to DotNetNuke

DNN at BarCampAre you interested in websites and content management? Maybe you have been hearing a lot about WordPress, Drupal, DotNetNuke or other CMS software and are having a touch time telling the difference between them all or deciding which one to use. Well, I just recently put forth a proposal to do an Intro to DotNetNuke session for the Charleston BarCamp conference in November. Please take a look and vote it up!

DotNetNuke is the leading open source content management system for the Windows Server platform. More importantly it is an extremely powerful and secure framework on which to build robust websites. And yes, the world of open source can exist and even thrive within the Microsoft environment. From the granular security model which allow system administrators to precisely define website permissions at the site, page or module level to the rich market of third party themes and add-ons, DNN offers a mature environment that rivals or surpasses those on other platforms.

In this session I will give an introduction to DNN and the way it operates. We’ll also look at a few demo sites and discuss their operation. Finally we will talk about DNN in comparison to other website tools like WordPress and Drupal and deal directly, honestly and rabidly with the differences between each and their relative strengths and weaknesses.

Review – WordPress 3 Cookbook

If you go much deeper into WordPress than simply adding pages, posts, and maybe some images, you will quickly come across areas where you will need a bit more instruction. As you start to customize menus, tailor-fit widgets, and adjust what posts appear in different locations, the standard out-of-the box help screens just don’t cut it anymore. This is where a book like Ric Shreve’s WordPress 3 Cookbook comes into play.

The WordPress 3 Cookbook, published by Packt Publishing in December of 2012, is not the kind of book you read cover to cover. As the title implies, it contains a series of recipes or tasks that you will go to in order to get something specific accomplished. Those tasks may be as simple as changing some text in the header or footer, or as complex as customizing the internal WordPress look to display posts of only a certain type or combining that with some custom CSS to display your posts in a two column layout.

Continue reading “Review – WordPress 3 Cookbook”

Talking Twitter at this Month's Small Business & Nonprofit Networking Lunch

Curious if Twitter is right for your organization? Find out at this month’s free Charleston Library Small Business & Nonprofit Networking Lunch! Local tweeter Michael Carnell will explain know to market your organization on this free, fast-growing social media site. Go in-depth and learn practical Twitter skills such as understanding hashtags, lists and retweeting, managing your tweets so Twitter doesn’t manage you, and knowing how to attract followers and interact effectively with them.

In addition to being ranked as one of the Charleston’s Top 30 Twitterholics by, speaker Michael Carnell is the owner of Palmettobug Digital. He provides technology consulting and training, volunteers in the community, and really loves British cars. Check out what he’s up to at

Where: Main Library Auditorium, 68 Calhoun St.
When: Tuesday, April 13th from 11:45 a.m.- 1:15 p.m.

Registration is not required. For more information, call the Reference Department at 805-6930 or email us at

Microsoft, Orlando, Disney and LEGO

I am currently down in Orlando, Florida, for the Microsoft Tech-Ed training conference. This is Microsoft’s big once a year convention and educational event. This year they decided to separate the developers from the “I.T. Pros” and it kind of takes the wind out of things a bit. Since it is now in two parts on different weeks everything is a bit smaller and there is less cross-pollination. Also makes me wonder if since we are called I.T. “pros”, does that mean that developers aren’t professional? Wait, don’t answer that. I used to be one and can already tell you the answer!

Anyway, Orlando is warm and the same as always. It is sprawling and ever growing. Also the sheer diversity of cultures, but residents and tourists, is always amazing. You can sit somewhere like the Disney Village Marketplace and hear tons of accents, languages, and speech patterns. And the clothes! Some people just really don’t know how to dress for the weather in the Southern US – much less Florida.

Speaking of Disney Village Marketplace, I always love going to the LEGO Imagination Center with my son. We have been going there together since he was too small to even know what it was. Back then it was my daughter and I who would revel in all the bricks. I will admit it to anyone who cares to listen that I love LEGO. My only regret is that as the time has gone on the store has gone more mainstream and carries less oddball stuff like the trains I love and closeouts from the factory.

Guess I am just a big kid – Disney, LEGO, and toys of all types. It is good to be a dad!