I need a new travel alarm clock

So I started looking for one that I could take with me easily. It’s amazing the variety that’s out there.

ClockyI started looking when I saw Clocky, the rolling alarm clock. This clock, after you hit snooze, starts running and hiding from you so you have to get out of bed to find it and turn it off.

I started thinking about the alarm clock that I saw in college. It was a baseball alarm clock that you could throw against the wall to hit snooze. That was a fun alarm clock.

alarm clock.jpgBeing the gadget junkie that I am, I realized at that point that I really shouldn’t just settle for the classic-boring-bargain travel alarm clock. It just wouldn’t fit with my persona and image. Having a clock that I have to find, however, in strange hotel room is not a fantastic idea. Not knowing what to do, I hit Gizmodo and started looking at the options. Wow! There are a ton of different types of alarm clocks out there.


I really like the size and features of the LifeMax Under Pillow Vibration Alarm Clock. It’s small, battery operated, robust and it has a vibration wake feature. buzz_alarm.jpgThat’s cool for those mornings that I need catch an early plane and need to get up in the morning without waking up my wonderful wife. The issue there is that I haven’t been able to find a distributor this side of the ocean. I can order it from MenKind in the UK but I don’t think that they ship international – at least their checkout form didn’t let me pick another country.

So the seach didn’t end there. There are alarm clocks that fly and more alarm clocks that can fly, sensory alarm clocks that wake you up with smells (see the Bacon Alarm Clock and Hakugen Odor Alarm) and cool audio clocks (see the Space Invaders Clock, Police Scanner Alarm Clock or any of the many MP3 alarm clocks), clocks that make you think to turn them off (see the Pattern Clock that plays Simon says with you before you can turn it off or the Puzzle Alarm Clock that makes you put together the puzzle before it turns off). I’m also interested in the Progressive Wake Alarm Clock and others like it because they don’t jolt you awake. Among the many other issues with all of the clocks in the this paragraph – very few of them will fit in the suitcase well.

So, I started looking for clocks that will travel better. Obviously the best for that would be the Online Clock but I’m not on the internet all the time. I know that Martin Shoemaker has written an alarm clock that works well when his machine is not in the shop or gets rebooted because of auto-updates. I could write/buy a software clock, but I really want a hardware solution to this because I never know how my laptop will be in use so I’m leary of that.

slim_clock.jpgI’m now looking at the Credit Card Case Clock and others like it. They are small, light and ultra portable.

So, what travel clock works for you?






Arc on the Street: Dave Redding – Command Pattern

Announcing Arc on the Street. This is going to be an opportunistic podcast. I’ve got a podcast recording rig that I’ve been playing with (many posts to come later about the rig). The best part about it is that it’s very portable and all battery powered.

So I was having a drink with my friend Dave Redding who was asking about patterns. I pointed him to Christian Gross‘s Foundations of Object-Oriented Programming using .NET 2.0 Patterns book. Turns out that he already knew some about patterns and had used the Command Pattern in the past. Well – in our first “Arc on the Street” Dave is going to tell us about that implementation and a little bit about patterns in general. At the time of the recording, I was thinking that I would do two series “Dev on the Street” and “Arc on the Street” but I’ve decided that it make more sense to just have one and for me to concentrate on the architect level topics.

CodeMash – Early Bird Special Ends on 12/18

I want both of my readers and good friends to come to CodeMash so I’m going to pitch it again today… 🙂 

CodeMash is an amazing event with some real world class speakers. They are coming to Sandusky for $99.00 for this amazing conference. For a grand total of $302.24 (including taxes and other fees that we are forced to pay) you will be housed and feed both physically and mentally for 2 days! If you want, for another $88.00 (+ taxes and fees) you can stay over Friday night and enjoy the water park soaking in the water, warmth and all of the knowledge that you have pumped into your brain over the previous two days.

Link to CodeMash

Scott Hanselman, blogging and podcasting

I’m feeling inadequate It’s kind of amazing, this is a hot blogging day for me and Scott Hanselman still has me outpaced even though he’s in Tanzania at the moment.

What’s even more amazing is that all of his posts are interesting and informative.

Not to sound too much like a fan boy (borrowing a line from Scott himself) but several times this week I’ve been asked questions and the answer has been listen to X Hanselminutes on topics from Reflection to contact management in A Better Outlook. I’ve been doing a lot of driving lately and I’ve caught up on a lot of the Hanselminutes that I haven’t had time to listen to before.

Side Note————————-

I got a Kensington FM transmitter for my IPod (bought before the Zune came out…) and listen to a ton of podcasts while driving. (I’ll post about those soon and add them to my blogroll.)


It’s been cool getting to “know” Scott through the podcasts. If you don’t listen to it, you should. I’ve learned about a lot of little things that I have not had time to explore and gotten better explanations to a lot of things that I already knew.

Some examples:
I have not had time to investigate PowerShell

Windows PowerShell (MONAD) Part II
Jeffrey Snover, PowerShell Architect
Microsoft Command Shell (MONAD)

This is one of the best and most concise explanations of how Scrum works

The Line of Scrummage

I have changed how I do email because of this one

A Better Outlook

I was actually mentioned in this one about one of my little pet topics Code Generation

Code Generation

What was fun about this was how surprised he sounded when he said my name.

I also like the non-programming topics, such as HDTV, Diabetes Technology and the Hanselminutiae topics.  

Link to http://www.hanselman.com

Test Driven Development

Last night Eric Maino (http://www.meeteric.net) gave a talk at GANG (http://www.migang.org) about Test Driven Development (TDD). It was a very good talk that touched on a lot of the important issues involved in testing. It was a good overview of NUnit (http://www.nunit.org) and how TDD works. The slides will be up on the GANG web site soon.


One of the questions that came up was how GUI testing works with NUnit. I happened to attend a talk at SD West (http://www.SDExpo.com) by Elisabeth Hendrickson from Quality Tree (http://www.qualitytree.com) on that exact topic. She has been working on a test harness for GUI testing that’s built on NUnit. You can learn more about it here – http://www.qualitytree.com/autotest/dotnetgui.htm.

Obfuscation, IT Governance and Enterprise Risk Management

There’s a free webcast coming up that you should know about titled “Obfuscation, IT Governance and Enterprise Risk Management”. It’s being hosted by PreEmptive Solutions – the creators of Dotfuscator. They know just a bit about the topic so it should be worth hearing.


Event: Obfuscation, IT Governance and Enterprise Risk Management  

Date and Time: Monday, April 24, 2006 1:00 pm Eastern time zone

Duration: 30 minutes

Description: Attendees will leave with a clear understanding of the role of obfuscation as an effective control for application security, access control, IP protection in the context of broader IT governance and enterprise risk management frameworks.