Drupal Views: Creating a Blog Archive and Topics Menu

Once you begin to get some age on your blog, it can be helpful to create a side menu block to help users find posts by either date or topic. The first part of this post will deal with creating a side menu block sorted by month and year. The second part will deal with creating a topics or tags menu using taxonomy. You can also use this method on other content types like press releases or news. If you are unfamiliar with Views, it is a very flexible and…

Understanding SDSFIE 3.0 Compliance

One of the more critical, and somewhat confusing, concepts in the SDSFIE 3.0 is the notion of what constitutes a 'compliant' data set. SDSFIE 3.0 offers considerably more flexibility in schema options than earlier releases. This capability was created to permit individual DoD users some naming options to accommodate existing legacy applications that use geospatial data. But the capability comes with a risk... namely compromising the very nature of a standard. Many new DoD contracts are being awarded with a clause stating that the data deliverables are to be submitted…

Spatial Data Standards for Facilities, Infrastructure and Environment (SDSFIE): Five Fundamental Tools

The Spatial Data Standards for Facilities, Infrastructure and Environment (SDSFIE) is the single Department of Defense spatial data standard that supports common implementation and interoperability for installations, environment, and civil works missions. SDSFIE is being managed by the Defense Installations Spatial Data Infrastructure (DISDI) Group. The DISDI Group is a formal governance group reporting to the Department of Defense’s Installations & Environment Investment Review Board. It is chaired by the DISDI Program Manager and made up of leaders from each of the Services’ programs for Installation Geospatial Information and Services…

Developing Rates for Government Contracts, Part 2

Welcome back for Part II! Last post we discussed the various type of contracts (Firm Fixed Price, Time & Materials, and Cost Plus Fixed Fee) and started to get into what we call indirect cost “pools” – Fringe, Overhead and General & Administrative. For this post, we will delve a bit further into what makes up the “pools”, how they are approved by the government and how you use the pools to develop the price per hour you can charge to the government. So what make up these so called…

Implementing a Lightweight Google-Like Search Using .Net

One of the requirements for my current project was to implement searching capabilities that were “Google-like”.  When I heard this, I immediately thought about solr, which some colleagues have recommended as an enterprise search engine. And it does look good. However, after reading the description, I realized that this wasn’t a good fit for my application. The main strength of solr is its textual indexing. It is meant to index text documents. The application that I am developing is an image catalog. Each image gets tagged with predefined attributes. Implemented…

Developing Rates for Government Contracts, Part 1

Zekiah has been working in the complicated government contracting world for over a decade as a small business. In that time, we have been asked many times by other companies, most of the time new starts ups but sometimes established companies much larger than us, how to develop indirect rates for Cost Plus Fixed Fee (CPFF) contracts. Hopefully this post will give you some idea of how to start the process. I’ll start with reviewing the different types of contracts in this post and then next time we will address…

Implementing Data Encryption With Symmetric Keys in Microsoft SQL Server

Starting with the 2005 version, Microsoft SQL Server has included new encryption capabilities that all administrators, programmers and database analyst should be aware of. Since then SQL Server has been able to natively support both hashing and encryption. When planning your encryption or hashing solution, first you need to decide if you will be storing an encrypted version of the data or a hashed copy of the data. The difference is that encrypted data can be decrypted, while hashed data cannot be decrypted. I recently had the opportunity to employ…

Integrating SharpMap with the Esri ArcGIS API for Silverlight

Note: The project described in this post also makes use of ArcGIS Server. If you intend to use the Esri ArcGIS API for Silverlight/WPF without ArcGIS Server, you should review the license agreement. If you have spent much time with the Esri ArcGIS API for Silverlight, you know it provides a lot of capabilities and offers a flexible API for adding data to a map. Esri has provided some simple out of the box solutions for putting data on a map, such as ArcGISDynamicLayer and GraphicsLayer. These are simple to…