ASA Destroying Balance of Slowpitch

I don’t have time for a full rant right now, but I just have to say it:
ASA, you are slowly ruining softball. Last year it was the move from full-count to 1-1 (which thankfully our league voted to ignore, but which makes tourneys a joke), and this year it is the change from 12-foot pitch height limit to 10-foot pitch height limit. How about next year you just get to your eventual stopping place and set it up on a tee and be done with it! As a pitcher you’ve nearly completely ruined the game for me, and you’ve destroyed the balance of the game. It was already tilted heavily toward the batters/offense and we pitchers had to work hard to get them off balance. Now we have so little to work with I feel like a glorified pitching machine. Quit listening to the meat-heads who want to do nothing but have it served up so they can hit home-runs all day. Let them go play U-Trip if that’s what they want. But let us who appreciate the finer points of the game (and can use them to our team’s advantage) play the game the way it was meant to be played.
I’ve been pitching and fine-tuning for nearly a decade, and today after throwing perfect pitch after perfect pitch which were called illegal (high) by the umpire, I actually asked to be relieved. If you know me at all you know that is not my style. I love pitching... or, well... I used to. Sad

ASA: Fix the game! Put it back to an official full-count and give us our 12 feet back! If not I might just hang up my spikes and find something else to play. I’m sick of it!

XSLT at Portland Code Camp 2010

Well, last weekend I had the great opportunity to give a presentation on XSLT at Portland Code Camp. XSLT was a little bit out of the mainstream talks on .NET, Silverlight, SQL Server, etc... as it’s not a new or (to many people anyway) sexy topic. XSLT has been around for over a decade, yet the number of people out there who either don’t know about it, or are afraid of it is staggering. This (and a snide remark about XSLT from Eric Ridgeway (@Ang3lFIR3) on Twitter) factored into my decision to forgo my original idea of a session on Silverlight (there were plenty of others, but I’ll probably still do mine some day) and give this one. I wasn’t sure what to expect as far as attendance, but was pleasantly surprised with a fairly good number of eager attendees. If you were one of them, I extend my thanks and appreciation for giving me (a bit over) an hour and fifteen minutes of your time. I hope it was time well spent for you.

A few people asked about getting the slides and examples from my presentation, and I promised I would post them up for anyone who wants them. This blog post is step one toward that goal. I have added and updated a few slides since the talk that help round it out a bit, and I still need to get the XPath examples I used actually put into a document that I can post. I’ll try to have it all up sometime this coming weekend, if not sooner.

Again, thanks to all who attended, and to all who put on such a great Code Camp.

-Jason