BKeeney Software Acquires Developer Products From The PandaWare Company

Lenexa, Kansas, USA (October 16, 2012) — BKeeney Software Inc. has announced that it has acquired two Real Studio developer products from The PandaWare Company including…

– Simple Help Editor: a cross-platform help authoring used by developers of all stripes
– PW Style HTML Field: a set of Real Studio classes for creating HTML email messages, used in several applications built with Real Studio

We are very excited to bring these products to BKeeney Software. These products represent years of work in areas that are fairly unique in the Real Studio world. These products are valued assets for the Real Studio community and we will continue to enhance these products. Dennis Birch, from The PandaWare Company said, “I am happy BKeeney Software has chosen to acquire these products.  They are well known in the Real Studio community and I’m sure they can continue to enhance these products and make them even better in the future.”

The new home for these products can be found at the following URL’s:

http://www.bkeeney.com/products/simple-help-editor
http://www.bkeeney.com/products/styled-html-field

For more information visit http://www.bkeeney.com or send email to info@bkeeney.com
.

Spirit Is Calling

BKeeney Software Inc. announces the release of Spirit is Calling, a daily spiritual journal co-authored by Rev. Chris Michaels and Dr. Edward Viljoen.  Spirit is Calling seeks to grow spirituality by encouraging daily journal entries that allow the user to track their spiritual growth over the course of a year. The journal tracks thoughts and reflections on a daily basis and allows the user to return to previous entries at any time.

Spirit is Calling features a perpetual calendar allowing the user to make use of the journal this year and for years to come. In addition, the program can be scheduled to automatically open every day at a scheduled time. Technical features include a full-featured word processor with spell check and the ability to insert graphics into your journal entries.

Many people find journaling to be very powerful.  It’s a way to get their thoughts and feelings out and into the Universe.  That can be a very liberating experience.  To get the most out of it, it does require some daily attention.  From the book:

Lesson Quote:

Daily practice has an advantage over sporadic practice, in that regular attention to your spiritual life builds up a rhythm in your awareness. This rhythm allows deeper insights to emerge that are not possible with a random program. This journal presents one of many possible devotional activities that you might use to establish a regular, daily rhythm of introspection.

To aid in the process of making it habit we added an autostart preference setting so that at a time of your choosing Spirit Is Calling starts automatically.  In the beginning that can be helpful to get into the habit of journaling.

One of the reasons why I created the electronic version of the journal is that I don’t write by hand much any more.  Writing by hand is very slow and somewhat painful for anything of length.  But I can type 80 words a minute (if I don’t care about the mistakes on the first pass) so having a word processor built-in to the journal (with spell checking) makes sense.

Spirit Is Calling’s home page is at www.bkeeney.com/spirit-is-calling

Direct Download Mac OS X:

www.bkeeney.com/downloads/macintoshdownloads/64-spirit-is-calling-for-mac-os-x/download

Direct Download Windows:

www.bkeeney.com/downloads/windowsdownloads/63-spirit-is-calling-for-windows/download

If you are looking to try something different in your spiritual practice, please try Spirit Is Calling.  Perhaps the journal will help you define your goal and get you out of your daily trivia.

Inspirational Quote:

In the absence of clearly-defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily trivia until ultimately we become enslaved by it. – Robert Heinlein

Tracking Your Time in 2010

Happy New Year everyone!  This time of year is an awesome time to review the previous year and make plans for the upcoming one.

Many of us charge clients by the hour regardless if we tell them that or not.  In a fixed bid project we estimate how long it will take to do the various parts of the project and then give the client a value based on those hourly estimates.

Reliable and accurate estimates are just the first step in making your business profitable.  The final step is going back and seeing if you estimated properly.  The only way to do this is to track your time on a project by project basis.

There are variety of tools available for doing this, but Task Timer, one of our products, is a very simple and inexpensive ($24.95) way of doing this.  Task Timer is designed to be simple and easy to use.  It’s as simple as pressing a button!

Setting up Task Timer isn’t much harder.  Add your project, add the major tasks you want to track, and add your initial estimates and start using it.  The new built-in estimate graphing gives you a minute by minute graphical view into how you’re estimate is tracking in comparison to your actual time spent.

For many of our consulting clients we give them a discount rate when they pre-purchase a block of hours (usually 40 hours).  Task Timer’s new estimates feature makes tracking the hours used really easy.  When the client purchases a new block of hours simply create a new task for the project and put the block of hours into the estimate field.  Task Timer is now tracking your bulk hours used for the client!

Many people who have purchased Task Timer have told us that it pays for itself in the first week!  We can’t verify their claims but we can say that when we created Task Timer and started implementing it for all of our projects we found that our billable hours rose over 15%.  It seems we were not very accurate reporting how much we worked on any particular project at the end of the day.  If we reported (really guestimated) our hours at the end of the week the numbers were even worse!

For additional information about Task Timer, please see this link:  http://www.bkeeney.com/products/tasktimer4

Download links:

Mac OS X:  http://www.bkeeney.com/downloads/macintoshdownloads/download/36-tasktimer

Windows:  http://www.bkeeney.com/downloads/download/38-tasktimer

Tracking your time is a good reality check.  Were those products you were spending so much time on really worth it?  How much time are your blogging?  What about video production for those training videos?  For that big size month project what did you get right (and more importantly wrong) in your estimates?

Plan on getting a handle on your estimating skills in 2010.  Task Timer is just one of the tools you can use.

Task Timer 4.1 Updated

Consulting or applications.  It’s my eternal struggle with my business.  Consulting pays the bills but products are…well, this seems silly… a little part of me.  With consulting projects you always know they’re not yours and so you don’t have nearly as much invested in them.  Your products have history and baggage and all the good, bad and ugly that goes into products.

Today we released Task Timer version 4.1.  It has some nifty new features for Mac OS X users including the ability to start/stop timers from the menubar (even when it’s not at the forefront) and from the dock menu.  We also added some charting capabilities so that it’s easy to tell if you’re spending too much time on a project (or product).  Sometimes this is good, sometimes it’s bad to know all this.

Task Timer was our very first product.  Written initially in the REALbasic 5.5 era.  The database it used back then was horrible.  If the app crashed while the db was open it was hosed and the only way to fix it was to use a utility to fix it.  Another version came out when RS change the database format and yet another version came out when it finally became SQLite based.

With version 4 we did a complete rewrite from the ground up.  It needed it.  I’ve learned a few things about REALbasic since then and there are some much better controls available.  Reporting was another big thing in version 4.  We went from using a StyleGrid printer to using RSReport.  Trust me, RSReport is light years ahead of what we were doing before.  In the 4.1 version we added charting which was pretty easy to do using the MonkeyBread ChartDirector plugin.  Both 3rd party items are welcome additions into the BKeeney Software stable of tools.

If you try any of the BKeeney Software products I talked about above and want to purchase, please use the coupon code BRIEFS to get a 25% discount off the purchase price! The coupon is good through July 1, 2009.