Might need to return to the world of the professional typists before too horribly long, so I've been keeping my eye out on Monster. Found a decent local advert last Friday and nibbled. Talking to the headhunter today, I found myself praising Microsoft, particularly SQL Server, and my disappointment with 3rd party libraries in general. Being something of an xplat fan on this site, I figured that required some fessing up, and some explaining.

Trying to be brief, in my years of experience, I've found MS IT software (excepting Windows Forms) to be incredibly rock-solid. Over those same years, I've found third party libs, from Blackbaud's Raiser's Edge to ESRI's ArcView, horribly hit-and-miss. For an IT career, I just don't want my success to be tied to how far down the object model some mid-sized corporation's programming team decided to go during development. MS seems to turn out good stuff, which means I can turn out good stuff. I can't even say that about Oracle. Headless Java apps, sure, but that's about it. Please, give me MS-SQL Server (well, anything *after* 6.5) and please heavens don't give me 3rd party libs whose object model can't be easily read off of an 8.5"x11" sheet of paper, because past that level of complexity, it appears [somewhat understandably] difficult for a mid-level co. to deliver a product with consistent high quality.

In other news, I like the new iPod idea, if the rumors are true. For $149, it sounds like you'll get an iPod that'll hold significantly more than a CD of songs and play 'em randomly. Hopefully you'll be able to skip to the next in the queue, but past that, that's really all I'd need. I enjoy popping my CD of mp3s in the car; that's about all I need to have what amounts to my own radio station. Add the ability to interface with iTunes and play AACs and you're getting somewhere. It's a glorified USB flashstick. ;^) And, of course, it'll get the cache from being called an iPod. Good move, Apple.