I have finally gotten around to making the site, MVC driven. I have built it up using node.js, mongodb, and the jade template engine so it has real-time response capability and security on administration forms. I integrated my node-auth into it, you can check out the CODE if you want.

Funny thing is I changed the design, check out the PREVIEW. It is much cleaner and elegant but keep in mind it's not finished yet.

Some things need to be done from the mongo shell for it work such as adding the admin user and navigation items but not for long. It is setup to deploy across the cloud with Juju like in my tutorial I posted last week.

I have a couple to do's left before I deploy it, such as text formatting of the returned data and making the contact form work. Still need to add a couple more fields to my admin panel also.

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Over the last week and a half I have have made some community contributions in several areas around the Juju service primarily having to do with Amazon Web Services, Node.js, and MongoDB.

At launchpad.net I made contributions to the AWS getting-started documentation so people understand how to set up ther access keys for applications before the legacy pages disappear. I have also submitted a revision of the node-app charm so that it doesn't rely on the PPA from Chris Lea. Myself and many others have had problems at times because of the rate of Ubuntu updates. If accepted it will build Node.js from source instead of using the Advanced Package Manager to install his PPA.

I also wrote a twelve page PDF documentation on how-to use Node.js / MongoDB with Ubuntu and a video tutorial series to accompany it. and a video tutorial series to accompany it. I first show how to set up a local environment for development and testing. Then I show how to write a simple name list application and how to install and test it. Lastly I showed how to deploy it across the cloud so one can scale access to it without having to invest large amount of money.

This is where small application developers get hurt. If it becomes a popular application / service they can account for this not by the day as before; but by the minute. This is done with the power of Juju and why I made my investments into the project.

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I am a bit behind schedule but not without good cause. USurvey has gone though a lot of changes over the last month and moved from a native mobile application to a cloud based Node.js application. I have built a secure realtime federated identity system which will apply to all users of our software. The native application needed some critical changes but it has made the application much more interative. On top of that I have began building an API system for developers; a major goal of the project. It will allow developers to build on top of USurvey and add the needed aspects of it into their apps to create a better user experience.

I have for the most part completed the CSS API and have decided to hold off on making it public. This decision coincides with my decision to go with Node.js as the backbone to the data structure. The beauty of Node.js is it allows one to quickly deploy ideas and data sets of interest with realtime aspects. Realtime data is important to the future of operation here and that needs to be reflected into the libraries we release. Node.js isn't javascript at its core; its C and C++. This allows integration of the libraries I have built like CSS API with little change.

This decision to use Node.js has trickled down to the website experience also. I still haven't built the site into its intended model and still have to write directly into the site template, hence the slow updates. Using Node.js will benefit operations and visitors without having to rely on complex and sometimes slow data systems by using in-memory data with MongoDB, the leading NoSQL database system. MongoDB makes the user experience quicker and our ability to scale to change fast and easy.

I am getting married! Sonia Ramirez said "yes" on May 26, 2013 and will be walking down the aisle on January 10, 2014. This has slowed my focus slightly on work here along with my preparations for the GRE in October.

Just to throw it out there. If any colleges want to offer me an honorary position into a PhD program, contact me!

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We are nearly done with the CSS Engine API written in C / C++. We are going back over a few parts to make it more memory efficient and adding couple more objects that will help minimize the amount of CSS used.

This API will allow developers to apply a styles and guarentee the targets design with a low or high degree of specifity. Developers can quickly apply already logicaly defined styles to HTML elements making the user experience richier because of this.

We also believe it can be useful to the development of other applications so we will be making it an open source project. We provide development ideas in the documentation we are creating for it located over at our github account. We estimate we will be done with this by May 9, 2013. Contributers can submit soon after when we decide where or how we may host the project.

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We are a little past due for an update. Here is the current state for The Mind Company:

We have finished the majority of the site template. There are several catagories that will feed into the main page that help people stay up-to-date on what we are working on.

The first catagory is the Think Lab. This is where all the details for each project such as development status, recource files, contrubuters, descriptions, links, and any other project related information. Currently the individual pages do not exist, we are working on creating a self gernerating page based on the connecting data.

Our second catagory is, the Papers section. Here people can find project related resouces and general research documents on non project related work. Non project related work apply to things like our Starbucks Coffee Order application proposal.

Last section that will be linked shortly is a blog feed for out of the box updates. This blog we are calling The Mind Evolution and it will help us address current events that do not apply directly to our work.

Now we must finish the underlying structure of the site and have choosen to develop our own structure written in C / C++. This structure is also the final stage of development for both Mind Drive and uSurvey. It has become our most critical component to completing all of our projects.

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Get ready for an all new experience. The Mind Company is going through changes, with a new focus and invigorated desire to create. You won't forget the new face we have in store.

Currently we are only presenting the new design as we go though and design the content we would appreciate your feedback. You can email us at feeds@themindspot.com.

What will the new site entail?

- New Design : White Papers Feel(See!!)
- Built w/: C/C++, HTML5, CSS3, Javascript
- Built for mobile. (Test it out by shrinking the browser width.)

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I recently obtained a Microsoft Surface Pro with 128GB of storage. This was a great investment that has and will further my ability as a developer and carry this company further.

This hasn't been without some work. The Surface Pro is a fantastically designed device but it comes with Windows 8 pre loaded. Developers wanting to use UNIX based systems like the linux kernel have been plagued by the new UEFI Secure Boot feature that Microsoft uses in Windows 8 which has made running dual OS drives very difficult. The previous Surface release didn't allow users to disable the Secure Boot feature but decided to in their new Surface Pro.

As a developer I saw this as a great opportunity to have my "On the go" dream machine. I was able to dual boot it with Ubuntu along with keep it slick looking in the process with my own custom GRUB2 bootloader theme.

You can learn more about the project in the Think Lab @ Surface Hack. You can also follow the instruction set I created located in the wiki archive @ AskUbuntu.com.

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