Pharmacy Advantage

Pharmacy Advantage Home Page We’ve been working for some time with Pharmacy Advantage specialty pharmacy. They dispense medications for lots of difficult to manage diseases and provide really incredible support services to help people handle the challenges involved in treating diseases like Cancer, MS, and Arthritis. We’ve been working closely with the people there for a few years now and I’m really impressed by their dedication to taking care of people.

The work we’ve done has involved building a custom website for patients to login and refill prescriptions online, integrating with their McKesson EnterpriseRx pharmacy software system, and providing a large web based application that they use as part of their daily workflow in taking care of patients.

If you need specialty medications delivered right to your door (or to an infusion center) you should talk to Pharmacy Advantage and they’ll take great care of you.

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Paw Pods

The first shipment of Paw Pods is in and they are ready for sale. There are 4 sizes of Pods and an Urn available in this first batch of products.

Paw Pods are biodegradable Pods and Urns for burying pets when they die. They range in size from the Micro Pod for goldfish to the Medium Pod for small dogs and cats. You can buy them online now for individuals who have lost a pet or you can order in bulk for veterinarians or retailers. Each Pod and Urn also comes with a flowering sympathy card to be planted to help memorialize the pet.

The site is built using the Magento platform. It’s a powerful, if sometimes unwieldy, e-commerce platform that was a good fit for this project.

Visit www.PawPods.com for more information and to buy them.

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Job Openings – Follow up

I was reading this article today and realized that I didn’t give people a good feel for who we are or why they may want to work here. So, here’s a better stab at that.

Our band of Brothers (and cousins)

We are a small team that works well together. Brad and I started doing this about 12 years ago. We’ve worked hard to build long term relationships with our customers. They’ve told the people they know to hire us and that’s worked out well for us in developing a stable, growing business. Barrett and Kyle have been working for us for a few years and we have a stable of contractors we’ve been using as well.

We just moved into some new offices in Lake Orion, MI. We share the building with a construction firm and a print shop. We also run another company we own, called Paw Pods, out of here. We’re a happy group that plans to work together for a very long time and we are looking to add some smart, nice, hard working people to our team.

Our Clients

We work hard to develop long term relationships with our clients. We have big companies that we work with like Henry Ford Health System and the University of Michigan. We have smaller companies like CIMdata and Oliver Corp., and we have some startups like EZPaperTrail and PawPods.

We make sure that everything we build is valuable to them and worth at least what they paid us to build it. As cheesy as it sounds we put their needs first, even if that means turning down an idea or project because we don’t think it is worth what we’d have to charge to build it. We’ve found that builds a real trust and that they come back to us again and again when they really do need something done so it pays off in the long term. We expect that kind of integrity from anyone that would work here. Short term thinking and exploitation is just not how we work. We want to build our clients up so they will succeed and work with us for many years to come.

Daily Life at IWD

We work varied hours. Kyle is an early bird. Brad tends to work late. I like to get home for dinner with my family. We’re flexible within reason and want you to be happy with the hours you’re working. Not an early riser? Come in at 10. Fall asleep at 7pm? Come in early instead.

We’ll get you set up with a nice computer with the software you need and big monitors to make sure crappy tools aren’t wasting your time. Prefer Eclipse or Notepad to Dreamweaver? We don’t care as long as the code you type in it is good.

Coffee is on us, Brad just picked up an espresso machine so you can even get fancy lattes right here. No lousy powdered creamer or burned sludge to drink.

We’ll do our best to make sure you’re happy coming in and working here each day. If you need something you just tell us and make a reasonable case and we’ll do our best to take care of you.

Ideal Candidates

You are:

  • Smart
  • Friendly
  • A good person
  • Hard working
  • Regularly productive
  • Interested in regularly learning new skills
  • Able to communicate complex and technical ideas clearly in writing and verbally
  • Able to research a solution to the problems you encounter
  • Dedicated to getting things right and refusing to churn out a crappy product

Our Technology Stack

We use the following on a daily basis:

  • ColdFusion
  • PHP
  • MySQL
  • jQuery
  • CSS
  • HTML
  • Subversion
  • Apache
  • Windows 2008
  • CentOS
  • Adobe’s Design programs – Fireworks, Photoshop, etc.

The more of those you are familiar with the better. But if you know code, especially some sort of web programming you should be able to make the switch. Moving to ColdFusion from something like ASP or PHP is like a breath of fresh air. jQuery is easy if you’ve been doing anything else with JavaScript . Subversion is pretty straightforward with a few minutes of explanation. The server stuff (Apache, CentOs, Windows 2008) is nice if you know it, but not actually required. If you’re asking what HTML is this may not be the job for you.

I think this is a pretty good group and I’m happy to be spending a huge portion of my life working with them on a lot of interesting projects that actually help people. If all this sounds good to you please let us know.

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Job Openings

We need one or two new developers at Infinite Web Design. We’re located in Lake Orion, MI (the North side of Metro Detroit near the Palace of Auburn Hills where the Pistons play). We need someone who can work with us here. We’re a small team with a growing list of clients we need to support, both large companies and small businesses.

Skills Needed:

  • Experience picking up one or more programming languages (we need people who know how to learn new skills)
  • ColdFusion needed, PHP would be a great addition to that
  • JavaScript (we use the jQuery framework)
  • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) & HTML
  • MySQL databases (designing schema and writing queries)
  • Interface Design skills – we expect our developers to make friendly, useable interfaces, not just write back-end code.
  • Extra skills in server administration with things like Apache, Windows Server, CentOS, etc. would be great, but are not necessary.

What it’s like to work here:

  • We treat our employees well. Give me a few minutes to “talk” to Kyle and Barrett and they’ll tell you themselves.
  • You set your own hours within reason. Barrett takes time to coach wrestling at the local high school. Kyle rides in bike races. We want you to enjoy your life and work here to support that.
  • We pay for the coffee, drink as much as you like. No powdered creamer or burned sludge. Blech.
  • We have nice new offices that we just moved into. Plenty of room and a nice space to spend your days.
  • You’ll mainly be writing code at first, but we tackle a wide variety of tasks from writing back end code to designing databases, designing interfaces, managing servers, writing business plans for startups, and working with clients. You’ll be able to take those tasks on as they are ready to.

People interested can reach us at http://infinitewebdesign.com/contact-us/.

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Adobe Flash Crashing On Mac OSX Lion

I found a great post today to help with the wide spread issue of flash crashing on Mac OSX Lion. It appears that certain fonts cause the Flash player to crash.

You can read all about how to fix the problem here.

Good luck,

Brad

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Updated Site Design

We’ve rebuilt our website. It’s been over two years since we updated the design and it was time for a refresh. We’re still running WordPress, but are now up to the latest version. We’ve found that it’s a fine Content Management System (CMS) for smaller informational sites like ours. We hope you like the new design and we’ll be making an effort to post more regularly to the blog, though, as usual, clients and family come first.

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Dell 968w Mac Setup Process

So i recently switched over to using a MacBook Pro and have had all kinds of issues with getting software and hardware configured properly. Nothing has been worse that trying to get my Dell 968w printer to work with my new Mac. After a few hours and a lot of forums here is what i found.

Setup Process:

  1. Go to System Preferences > Print & Fax
  2. Click on the little plus sign (+) to add a new printer
  3. In my case I had already setup the printer using a windows pc and had configured the wireless settings, if you haven’t you need to do that first.
  4. Go to the IP tab
  5. Select “HP Jetdirect – Socket” as the Protocol
  6. For the address you need to go to the Dell printer and print your network settings page.
  7. UPDATE – You need to make sure you are only trying to print wirelessly to the printer. If you have an Ethernet cord or usb cable connected to the printer you will not be able to connect wirelessly to print.
  8. Under TCP/IP on the network settings page you printed you will find “address”
  9. This IP address is what you put into the address field on the IP tab
  10. Leave queue blank
  11. Type in a name, I used “Dell 968w”
  12. Type in a location if you want, I used “Work”
  13. For print using you need to go to “select printer software”
  14. Then in the pop up prompt search for “Lexmark 9500”
  15. There will be 4 results
  16. The first two results and the last two results look identical but they are NOT.
  17. You must pick the SECOND “Lexmark 9500 Series” in the list.
  18. I repeat, you must pick the SECOND “Lexmark 9500 Series” in the list.
  19. When it shows you the options available with the printer it should give you the option to check “Tray 2” and also there should be a select box next to “Two-Sided Printing Dry Time”
  20. If you don’t see the option for “Two-Sided Printing Dry Time” you have FAILED and picked the first “Lexmark 9500 Series” in the list
  21. You can check off “Tray 2” or leave it uncheck.
  22. I choose to check the box and left “Two-Sided Printing Dry Time” on “Use Printer Settings”
  23. Click OK
  24. Done

All i do is win.

-Brad

Posted in Hardware, Software | 16 Comments

I'm Back

It has been a long time since I have posted anything, and I felt it was time to get back to the “conversation” if you will. 2010 was a roller coaster of a year. There were many things both personally and professionally that I was very excited about. There were also a few things that made me happy to close the book on 2010.

Kevin and I have been very busy with new projects and along the way I felt I was too busy to post anything. Now after looking back I realized there is a lot of cool stuff I should have posted and there are a few things I am going to write about.

I have started using Twitter and have found it to be a great resource for work. I constantly find new and exciting information from lots of great people. One of the reasons I have decided to start posting again is so I can start to share with the Twitter community.

You can find me on Twitter: @brad_hall.

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It’s not “just business”

I’ve found that some people go through life trying to act like the things they spend a third or more of their day doing is not a personal endeavor. As though you can treat people badly or disregard the impact of your actions on others so long as it benefits you because it is “just business”. I find this disingenuous at best and sociopathic at worst.

The truth is while the law may think that businesses are pseudo people that can behave independently of human beings you are really just dealing with individuals, sometimes one, sometimes many, but just people like you and me. Business interactions have an impact on real people and we should reflect on that every time we interact with  a business, while we’re at work or just around town getting food, filling our gas tank, or seeing a movie. You’re not interacting with a soulless corporation. You’re interacting with people.

Your choice of where to shop dictates who will have a job and who will not. Your choice to use one supplier or another for your business dictates who will hire and who will not. Your choice to betray or show loyalty makes a difference to real people.

I’ve been reflecting on this of late after watching people we’ve done business with and seeing some that are great and some not so great. I see no need to name names publicly, but I found a common thread running through interactions with people that went badly. They seem to regard interactions as “just business” (they also often use that phrase to justify their actions) and disregard the effect they have on real people. I think that sucks.

I’ve also had the good fortune to work with some really great people and even become friends with some of them. The common thread there seems to be that they focus on doing something good. They want to make money and succeed, but not at the expense of others. They want to help people, make the world a little better through their efforts each day, and they don’t see businesses, instead seeing all the people they are interacting with. They are the ones I want to stay up all night solving a problem for. They are the ones I want to be working with 5 or 10 years from now. They are the ones we should all try to emulate.

Next time you hear the phrase “it’s just business”, stop, think about who uttered it and what they are doing, and think about if you really want to be a part of it.

Posted in Asides, Ethics | Comments Off on It’s not “just business”

NFL.com Ruins Monday

I am a Lions fan. So I suffer a lot of grief. They hadn’t won since 2007, but I keep watching and rooting for them. Yesterday their game was blacked out because fans had mostly given up on them, however the NFL said they would put the game online today for people to watch. So I avoided the news and looked forward to still seeing the game. Then I visted NFL.com to try to watch the video.

Suspecting they would show the score I Googled for the video section of the site Game Rewind and found a pay registration page for watching games, but no mention of being able to watch the Lions game for free.

So I went to NFL.com and tried to avoid seeing the score while finding the video link in the navigation… and my day was ruined. They showed the final score in 3 places before your eyes reach the advertisement to watch the game at the bottom left (I dimmed the rest of the page to highlight this below). What the hell? Why not hide the info for the game that people haven’t seen yet? Perhaps they could use some form of a Spoiler Alert? Or better yet, create a page like Kottke did for the moon landing anniversary that you can load before hand so you don’t have to go through a site full of reporting on the game youwant to watch and enjoy. What fun is watching a game when you know the outcome? NONE!!! NFL.com sucked it up badly. And, since there likely will be more blackouts the rest of the season, and very few wins, I may have to wait another year to see a Lions victory. Thanks NFL jerks.

nfl_website_sucking

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