Weeknotes: maintenance, and Dickens

It seems to be maintenance season again.

Still carry on with the accounts systems and doing some work to those systems for most of the week. It is a slow job but I would rather spend time getting it right rather than rush something ut and spend the next year patching it because we rushed it rather than a need changed.

The rest of the week is spent either developing some new functionality for the admin department or thinking about revamping the existing services. Most of them are fine but a lick of paint and some further optimisation to take care of unanticipated needs wouldn’t go amiss. I suspect that maintenance isn’t high on most developer’s agendas but in a moving and growing company, some systems begin to be left behind when their use either changes or the company outgrows the service. The challenge is trying to minimise user frustration whilst getting the new version out and finished. Mm, time to work on the ‘soft skills’ of people methinks.

In the meanwhile, I’ve created an XML file of letters of Dickens and now am just changing the loading script for Open Correspondence so that there is a normalised way of loading the data into the database. The fact that everything was predicated on one file was annoying me so I made the time to change it. The next thing is to dive back into TEI lite and rework the file so that it fits into an already definted schema. (I don’t see there being any point in this case in trying to create something new as it should be unnecessary.)