Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Horizontal centering with CSS

One of the most frustrating aspects of CSS, besides Internet Explorer, is horizontal centering. If you’ve ever had to center elements in your web applications, you may have run into problems, especially if they were dynamic-width elements.

Centering with CSS really doesn’t have to be difficult, although I’m sure it seems like it sometimes. We’ve written up a handy little guide which explains in detail how to center both fixed-width and dynamic-width elements in CSS. You can read about it in our forums.>>

Monday, April 27, 2009

2009 IT Salary Survey recently released their annual IT salary survey, and some of the results are rather interesting. For example, I’ve never seen such a disparity in salaries/raises across different industries and regions.

Also, I found another bit of information really interesting. According to the survey, the IT industry is one of the best industries to be in right now, but IT professionals are feeling increasingly unsure in their choice of a career path. I’m curious to hear what you think. How do you feel about your choice of IT as a career?

Friday, April 24, 2009

Outsource to America

I know that companies everywhere need to cut down on costs these days, which in many cases leads to outsourcing. When it comes to web application development, however, outsourcing isn’t the cheapest option.

Last week, we announced the beginning of our “Outsource to America” offer. The offer is a simple one: We’ll beat any outsourcing quote for web application development. Tell us your project, show us your quote, and we’ll beat it. Pretty simple, huh?

Click here for more information.>>

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Visit us at COMMON, win a new Netbook!

Are you going to COMMON next week? If so, make sure you stop by our booth (#418) and take our short survey for your chance to win a new netbook!

Not going to COMMON this year? No worries. If you currently receive the Cup of Joe emails, you are eligible to participate in the netbook drawing. Just complete this short survey for your chance to win!

Only subscribers to the Cup of Joe emails are eligible to participate in the drawing. If you are not currently a subscriber, you can sign up here.>>

Monday, April 20, 2009

Inside 12 IT disasters

What is the cost of a major IT failure? As companies grow increasingly reliant on technology, the cost could be astronomical. A major IT failure could drive away customers or even shut down a business in extreme cases.

I recently read a piece in that takes a close look at 12 major IT disasters, including how and why they happened, as well as the resulting fallout. It’s a startling reminder of just how bad things can get when problems are not caught and fixed early on.

You can find the article here.>>

Friday, April 17, 2009

Simply survive or grow stronger?

When times get tough, I notice that many companies go straight to cutback mode. They focus so much on surviving, they often miss new opportunities to succeed.

Here’s a company that took a different approach. Instead of cutting back, they invested in new technology. As a result, they opened up a new 24/7 revenue stream, become far more efficient, and better positioned themselves for the future.

You can read the whole story here.>>

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Reminder: Free m-Power upgrade for mrc-Productivity Series users

Friendly reminder: If you are a current mrc-Productivity Series user on maintenance and warranty, our offer for a free m-Power upgrade will expire this year.

You should have received a letter late last year detailing this free upgrade and what you need to do. If you did not receive the letter, or if you have any questions about the upgrade, please give us a call at (630) 916-0662, or at +44-20-8322-7720 in the UK.

One very important difference between m-Power and the mrc-Productivity Series is transport-ability. While the mrc-Productivity Series was confined to the AS400, m-Power will work over any database or platform, meaning your investment in applications built with our software is safe should you ever switch to a different database or hardware platform.

Monday, April 13, 2009

How to get fired

While the economy certainly provides reason for job worries, it’s not the only factor that could effect your employment. There are many factors within your control, which can either help you or hurt you.

This cautionary article on details 5 real life examples of behaviors that are not only bad for a career, but can get you fired. While the article focuses on CIOs, I think it really applies to just about anyone.

You can read the entire article here.>>

Friday, April 10, 2009

Mobile application development

It’s a good time to be a mobile application developer. With the recent launch of Blackberry App World, and Microsoft's upcoming app store, mobile application developers will have 4 different app stores to develop for.

However, did you know that you don’t have to be a developer to create business web applications for a smart-phone? m-Power allows you to create an endless variety of custom business applications that can be accessed via your Blackberry, PDA, or smart-phone.

Although you don’t have to be a developer, it does help to understand a few important rules when creating mobile apps. Check out our forum for a few pointers and some best practices to follow.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Fixing the reporting problem

Can you guess what these words have in common?

  • Green-screen
  • Character based
  • Out-dated
  • Slow
  • Manual
Give up? I have heard all of these words used to describe reporting processes in the past year. It’s true. Many companies still struggle with outdated reporting, many of which believe they don’t have the time or the money to fix the problem.

Take this company for example: Their reporting process used to involve a Virtual Private Network (VPN), green-screen apps, and character based reports. The good news: After a thorough search, they finally found an affordable way to fix their reporting problem in a few short months .

Find out what they did here.>>

Monday, April 06, 2009

10 skills developers will need in the next five years

As a developer, what are you focusing on: Skills you need to know now or skills you will need to know in the future? Sometimes, it’s good to take a look into the future (with your own crystal ball), and try to determine the skill(s) that will be most useful to you a few years down the road.

For those who don’t have a crystal ball, check out this article in entitled, “10 skills developers will need in the next 5 years.” I think the author makes some great points.

Want to kill 3 birds with one stone? Using m-Power will take care of #1, #3, and #10 all by itself, and it’s easy to learn too. Check it out for yourself with our free online lab.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Return on Investment (ROI) is an overused buzz-word

Is it just me, or has ROI lost its meaning? When I see an advertisement touting the great ROI of a product, I’m not impressed in the least. Don’t get me wrong, I want a good ROI…everyone does. If a product will generate more money than it cost to obtain, I would be foolish not to buy it.

The problem is this: ROI has become a grossly overused marketing term that doesn’t hold much value anymore. With everyone advertising ROI, how do you separate fact from fiction?

While I can’t answer that question for other products, we like to answer it for m-Power with real live proof. Just tell us what you need, and we will build you a free web application using your own files. Better yet, we’ll even show you how we did it, and the web application is yours to keep.

Just fill out this short form to get started.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Did you know . . .

. . . that when you build a servlet (report, inquiry, or maintenance web application) with m-Power, you are also building a portlet that works from virtually any portal available today.

Portals come in all shapes and sizes. Popular examples include the hosted free variety (like iGoogle), the open source variety (like LifeRay), and the paid proprietary variety (like MS SharePoint).

Your out of the box m-Power web applications work with any of these with no special compiles or programming changes. In fact, the same web application can be called from all of them, with no variations. Here are some examples in pictures. Here you will find a working example. And here is how easy it is to try.

Our aim is to deliver well architected web applications that empower you to be more productive in your business life.

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