A week with a Dell XPS 1210

I took a Dell XPS 1210 to Europe with me last week and I have to say I like it.  I wasn’t sure I would but after using it, I am pretty pleased.  A guy I know in IT loaned it to me as a stop gap measure – I had told him I wanted a Mac because I concluded the XPS 1330 wouldn’t work for me (no docking station).  He told me we would be getting some new Dell Lattitude E series machines in a couple months and he thought the 4300 would be what I’d want and he would loan me a 1210 until the new E series were available.  I decided it was pretty low risk for me so he sent it out.

The machine he sent me is a 1210 with 2GB RAM, an 80GB disk and WinXP (I have been running Vista).  The first thing I did was upgrade it to XP SP3 and then I went and bought a 250GB disk for it and Ghosted the image over to it.  I also installed VMWare Player and moved the VM I am using for my wp-swimteam plugin development over to it.

The battery life is wonderful, the best I have ever had in a laptop.  The machine is pretty peppy as well.  It hasn’t gone off in the weeds on me at all like my HP tends to do.  I used it on flights to and from as well as within Europe last week and I am happy with the smaller form factor – it isn’t such a struggle to use it on an airplane like my HP can be.  When someone leans their seat back (which they should never do except on a red-eye), I can still work.  I can’t with my HP.

At this point I am going to use it until the Dell Lattitude E series are out and then make my decision.  I am still intrigued by the Mac but being on our corporate standard also has some benefits.

Swim Meets and Swim Club Profiles

Over the last couple of days, actually since I flew home from Paris on Friday, I have added functionality to set up a swim season schedule.  To do this, I added swim club profiles and swim meets.  The swim meet functionality also includes a summary which is added to the overview page.  The summary reports the schedule for the current season, results. and lcation of the meets.

Adding swim meets is base functionality which is necessary to support online scratch sheets (need to know which meet a swimmer is scratching from) and ultimately results.  The online scratch will probably be the next thing I implement, results are a bit trickly because loading, parsing, and connecting results to swim meets and swimmers will be a fairly extensive problem.  I suspect I won’t have this working until after our season completes but you never know!

I also want to go back and visit the Team Profile functionality.  I am storing the Team Profile in the WordPress options table but now that I have Swim Club Profiles, there isn’t any reason to store the Team Profile any differently than any other Swim Club.  It isn’t urgent so I may defer that as well.

Lastly, I need to make changes to many of the classes to allow some of the methods to be called without needing a class variable first (the class::method() format).  For example – I should be able to call SwimTeamSwimmer::getAllSwimmerIds() and return an array of SwimmerIds without declaring a class variable first but right now I can’t due to the way I constructed the base level database query class.  There are a number of places where this would be really handy.