Shameless Self Promotion

For my day job, I am a contract developer, running my own company and building web applications using HTML5 technologies and cross-platform mobile applications using PhoneGap. This is what lets me work on projects like FeedSpider in my spare time.

So, are you looking for someone to build you a website, web app, mobile app, or Windows application? Or are you looking for a couple of contract developers to help out your team?

OthelloVenturesWhat Othello can do for you:

Website development: Need a website? We do that! All the way from simple HTML/CSS brochure-style websites to more complex implementations using Content Management Systems such as WordPress. If you need it we can even set up your domain, hosting, and email for you!

Web Application Development: Need something a little more powerful than just a website? Using HTML5 and Javascript technologies, we can build you a web application that looks and feels just like a native app. We can even present it like one – packaging it as a Google Chrome App or a Mozilla Firefox App!

Cross-Platform Mobile Application development: Using cross-platform technologies, such as Apache Cordova, we can build you an application that runs identically across all of the devices that you need to support, including iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, and even Tizen Phone and Firefox OS! We can also leverage the mobile code base to build a Universal Windows app or put it on the big screen with LG webOS or Tizen for TVs! How’s that for flexibility?

Windows Application Development: Web and mobile apps not quite what you need? We can build you a traditional Windows application instead. Specializing in C# (and C++ for when you really need it), we can build a Windows application that will suit your needs.

Not only that, our developers are North America-based, so you don’t have to worry about outsourcing your development to somewhere offshore, where the developers may not speak your language, and will certainly not be available in the same time zone.

Drop me a line to discuss what we can do for you:, or check out our website:

FeedSpider Dev Blog: Enyo, Cordova, and Android

So, yesterday, I finally went and did it. I fired up a Cordova project, dropped the FeedSpider code into it with zero changes, compiled the thing and set it running. And it worked!

Well mostly.

The stuff that I expected to break broke: sharing, notifications, and OAuth. But, those are the things that are platform-specific that I haven’t written for Android yet.

So, on with the screenshots!

FeedSpiderFeedSpider 2 FeedSpider3Android, Cordova, and Enyo play pretty nice together, don’t they? So, what will it take to make this work and get it ready for the Google Play store?

  1. A splashscreen.
  2. An upgrade to Enyo
  3. A rewrite of some of the core components of FeedSpider into pure Enyo 2, getting rid of prototype.js entirely.
  4. Implementing the platform-specific features.
  5. A facelift. The Onyx look is starting to look a little dated, but it’s easily re-skinnable to a material design look.

As always, I’ll post updates as I go. It’s nice to be getting back into FeedSpider!

Damn You Canada Post

So I got my copy of the December issue of Juiced.GS the other day, and it included a special bonus, a 5 1/4″ floppy with demos! Needless to say, I’ve been looking forward to this since it was announced a few weeks ago.

Ken and his team took all reasonable precautions by stamping the envelope with “Magnetic Media, Do Not X-Ray, Do Not Bend” Of course, how do you think that it showed up in my mailbox?

If you guessed rolled up and shoved in, you’re right.

2016-01-06 18.30.47-2Needless to say, I was not impressed, and I did not have a good feeling about this. I opened it up to inspect the damage, and unfortunately, it looked like the floppy disk had been rolled up with it.

2016-01-06 18.31.35Look at the cracks in that casing!

Fortunately, when I contacted Ken, he told me that they were going to to do another run of the floppy disks, and was able to send me one for just the cost of shipping (or I could download the disk image, but it’s just not the same!)

Great customer service as always! I never had the experience back in the day, so I’m looking forward to trying out the first Apple II software disk that I’ve received with a magazine. Getting them off eBay isn’t quite the same!

New Years Resolutions 2016

It’s that time of year again!

Resolution 1: Post on the blog more regularly. A minimum of once a week.

I know that I say this every time that I come back from a break. It is just a matter of having the self-discipline to find the time to sit down and write something, even it it’s short. It’s not like I have nothing to write – I have a list of topics in the backlog. The problem is that if I miss one week, it becomes a lot easier to miss the next too, so I’m going to practice self-discipline.

Resolution 2: More Apple II Projects

I lost the space I had available to work on stuff as of the summer, so I had to put all of my Apple II gear away. But in about a month, I’m going be getting some office space at home again, so I can set it all up again! I want to continue with the disk imaging, and find some sort of interesting hardware project to do, as well as retrobrite a bunch of stuff. Maybe I can even find something that I can write up for Juiced.GS!

Resolution 3: Work on LuneOS

I did a bit of work with the LuneOS folks last year, but mostly had to leave it alone due to being busy at work. Now that I’m going to have office space at home again, I want to find some time to contribute to the project – maybe get the Photos and Videos app complete and functional.

Resolution 4: FeedSpider rewrite into pure Enyo 2

I know, another FeedSpider rewrite!? The last re-write still relies heavily on prototype.js. With model and collection support, and taking advantage of bindings, I should be able to eliminate that entirely. I’ll be able to complete my goal of releasing FeedSpider for more platforms, especially iOS.

Resolution 5: Grow the business

If I want to be able to fund all of this, I need to keep growing my business, Othello Ventures Ltd. The goal is to take on more development contracts, so that I can bring on more people and turn that into a positive feedback loop. I also have a few other projects in mind that will hopefully help, and I look forward to executing on them. 2015 was a good year for the business. I want 2016 to be a great year!

That all should be enough to keep me busy for an entire year now, shouldn’t it!