The process of getting an Ikea Kitchen

Writing by on Sunday, 16 of September , 2012 at 5:50 am

Thinking of upgrading your old 80’s style Kitchen and need an Ikea style Kitchen? Or is your wife pressuring/whipping your butt to take on this new project? Well, it’s quite a process and here’s a breakdown. And it’s NOT Cheap either (just so you know)

So here are the people involved (at least in the Bay Area – Silicon Valley, CA):

  • Your General Contractor
  • Traemand – Ikea Partner for Design & Cabinet installation
  • United Marble & Granite – Ikea Partner for Countertops
  • Plumber, Electrician or your General Contractor

Now here’s the step by step process – Yes. It has to be in this order and can take several weeks.

  • DESIGN : Get a designer (Ikea partner – Traaemand) to design the Kitchen and come up with parts — $200 just to design it
  • MATERIALS : From the design, buy all the cabinets etc. from Ikea and have it delivered (Best time is when Ikea has a 20% discount SALE)
  • APPLIANCES : You might need to buy appliances from Ikea, Fry’s, Sears etc.
  • DEMOLITION : (Week 1) Get a contractor to demolish your current kitchen
  • NO KITCHEN : (Week 1-4) Prepare to live on Junk Food/Take Out
  • CABINET INSTALLATION : (Week 1) Get Traemand folks to install the cabinets (or have your contractor do this)
  • COUNTER TOP/SINK INSTALLATION : (Week 2-4) Work with UM&G to template the counter top and then have it cut and installed. You can find “other” places to speed up this step.
  • APPLIANCE INSTALLATION : (Week 1-3) Have your General Contractor or the Store (Fry’s/Sears) install appliances
  • PLUMBING : (Week 4) Get water to your sink and refrigerator. UM&G will not drill holes that go past the granite. So if there’s plywood your General Contractor need to take care of it and do the plumbing.
  • ELECTRIAL : (Week 2-4) Gas/220V power supply etc. depending on your situation. Pain in the a$$ – Involve your General Contractor or Electrician
  • BACK IN BUSINESS : (Week 4) Now you can cook at your own place
  • BACKSPLASH : (Week 4-N) You might need to Home Depot this and have your contractor install it or do it yourself.
  • PAINTING : (Week 4-N) Just do it yourself. Enough money spent alreadyl

There you go – Freaking pain in the a$$. It’s a complicated process, but Ikea is a name you can trust and it looks pretty cool (to me) in the end. So it’s worth the wait and the pain. Things can be buggy at times, but yeah just manage the project well and if you have a good contractor you should be good to go.

Here are the photos.

Old Fridge

Picture 1 of 10

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Category: Rants/Raves,Tips and Tricks

GoodBye Xmarks (Sad to see you go)

Writing by on Monday, 27 of September , 2010 at 9:57 pm

XMarks announced today on their blog that they will be shutting down. Such a great product and no one’s funding them or buying them out?

XMarks allowed sync-ing Bookmarks, passwords and history across multiple computers and cross browsers. Firefox and Chrome have their own plugins but are not inter-opearble. XMarks was a MUST HAVE plugin and I used it all the time.

It has been one of the top Firefox plugins for such a long time. It’s free – which is why they had such a huge user base, but the business model of ads didn’t work out. All good things come to an end and this one must too!

Wish them the best and I do hope they don’t shut down!

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Category: Rants/Raves

Poorly written Email, Bugs Reports etc.

Writing by on Friday, 17 of September , 2010 at 8:47 am

I’m one of the “fortunate” one’s to receive 50+ work emails on a good day. Really! And I’m a developer. OK I’m part of three teams and need to interact with 3rd party support as well, so on a busy day, I can get up to 150 emails easily. Balancing development between two products is fine, but now also dealing with email gets annoying. Even though most of this email doesn’t even concern you, it often distracts you and could impair your train of thought.

So, your mind gets tuned to skimming through the “junk” and trained to pick up just the right information quickly.

In a previous life, I saw this type of a Bug Report from a user (say John Doe) of the product who was not a developer. I’ve totally changed the content and the bug, but the format of the report is similar to what happened. Assume, I’m a UI developer and develop widgets and users can display data onto some highly customizable Table Widget.

Swing: Table: UI doesn’t show data

The Table UI is broken. The Table is not showing any data with currency formatting applied. We’re trying to display information about the total sales that happened per quarter across all regions. There are three regions of concern APAC, EMEA, North America and LATM and four quarters Q1, Q2, Q3 and Q4. The customer needs to see roll ups of all these values and given the large number of sales that have happened in North America they also want to see counts of number of sales rolled up. We issue a SQL and pass it through the “ABC” scripts/rules to transform the data and send it to the table. The second column in the table has been rendered to display currency. The admin guide doesn’t talk about rendering data that is transformed and displayed. Jane Doe stated she passed some more data through from the SQL to the table and did something with a properties of the table and changing it to currency format worked. But it’s not an option to change the rule. Currency capability must be a supported capability…product is very confusing to use. The weird thing is that in the Script’s Reference manual there is information on setting currency for the table (why information like this isn’t in the Administration Manual I don’t know). I searched google and it seems straight forward to apply rendering on a table. Various other formatting was tried without successful results.

Bottom line: Every table needs to support currency formatting. I should be able to provide a sales numbers, or sales estimates or whatever to accomplish what I want.

John Doe

Three things are important.

  • The Subject: Table UI doesn’t show data
  • The Opening Statement: The Table UI is broken. The Table is not showing any data.
  • The Conclusion:Every table needs to support currency formatting. (notice how they use “Bottom line” to re-emphasize this)

These points indicate that the formatting on the table is broken, even though everyone has seen currency formatting working in tables on other screens.

So, is it really the table that’s broken? Could the problem be else where? Does the SQL look right? Are you allowed to use the “ABC” rule/script?

In this case, let’s say the problem was that the SQL was sending some incompatible result into the “ABC” script and hence was throwing an exception and not sending any data to the table and the user is notified of this as well as the detailed exception is in the logs. Now, this rule is mentioned only ONCE in the entire bug report while all the blame is on the Table. (BTW I’ve shortened the bug report, but it really had far too much more irrelevant information)

So, why then provide unnecessary information about the business of sales in EMEA, APAC, etc. and about the Q1, Q2… which doesn’t even concern the developer who’s getting 150 emails a day? To troubleshoot the problem, the developer might have to setup the same environment and try to replicate it when currency formatting always worked. Then finally, in all the mess find out that it’s this “ABC” rule that’s incompatible?

In good faith, the developer will assume given such a report that the advanced users knows what they’re doing and that the SQL and “ABC” rule are fine! If the table supports currency formatting the bug will be closed as not reproducilble! And then later on after some comments in the bug, Mr. John Doe claims that this bug report is for the rule “ABC”.

So, why not say?

ABC script doesn’t work with the following SQL

Passing a SQL “SELECT columnA, SUM(columnB) FROM tableA GROUP BY columnA” into the script “ABC” results in an ArrayIndexOutOfBoundsException.
Logs attached, See snapshot for details.
Easily reproducible.

Simple. No mention of the Table and currency formatting to totally mislead Development. Even if the steps to reproduce are not provided, the developer could figure this out simply looking at such a report.

I can’t discuss the actual scenario, which was a little more involved but as obvious as this example.

But, the point is to keep the content of your email, short and sweet while still providing all the relevant details. Not so hard to do, is it?

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Category: Rants/Raves

JAR Search Engine –

Writing by on Monday, 8 of September , 2008 at 3:52 pm is an excellent JAR search engine that helps to find JAR files containing required Java classes. Just enter the name of a class or the JAR file you’re looking and Search. can be used to easily resolve NoClassDefFoundError and ClassNotFoundException problems. Just awesome.

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Category: Java,Rants/Raves

Google Chrome (First Impression)

Writing by on Friday, 5 of September , 2008 at 9:53 am

I love it! Super fast – Gold Medal when it comes to speed of rendering pages. People have successfully managed to crash it, however for regular browsing its fantastic!

I think it’s good to have two browsers competing with Internet Explorer now, simply because Chrome and Firefox will comply to Web standards (bad thing for some who’re using some of “extra” features of Internet Explorer).

From a Web Developers point, very similar to Firefox rendering in terms of look and feel, spacing etc. of the rendered page, though I spotted one difference with iframes (I think), which showed up in a tab within the main tab. I think developers will now also need to test their app on Chrome for minor differences.

My first impression – very fast, very similar to Firefox, lot of cool features with attention to detail. However, I’m not yet ready to switch from Firefox.

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Category: Rants/Raves

PDF Files

Writing by on Tuesday, 30 of October , 2007 at 12:11 am

My Operating Systems professor at Ohio University (a big Microsoft basher) told us, “In the real world, there are just 3 ways to send documents PDF, PostScript and TXT. Thats how I’m going to accept your assignments. And extra points to those who submit their homework in PostScript. I don’t read DOC files.” Hmm… that tone sound familiar? I loved Microsoft Office since it was quick and easy to use, and it was installed in the labs but free PDF Creators weren’t so common, nor could I afford a PDF software like Adobe Acrobat so that was out of question, TXT did not support images so I used LaTeX and submitted my assignments in PS. And boy, was that painful?

These days, PDFs can be created so easily and no wonder why they’re so popular. Here are some of the advantages of PDF files that make me a big fan.

  • Simplicity– One single document holds it all, as opposed to HTML which needs images, stylesheets, scripts etc.
  • Multi-platform – The same document can be viewed on Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris etc. and look exactly the same.
  • “Read Only” – Cannot be altered without leaving an electronic footprint. As opposed to images that can be easily altered.
  • Consistent – Preserve information like text, drawings, fonts, color graphics, photos regardless of the applications used to create them
  • Searchable – Full-text support for keywords.
  • Interactive – Can be used as Forms for user input as used by US Government for IRS Forms, USCIS, etc.
  • Extensible – Generated programmatically for PDF based business solutions like Investor Statements etc.
  • Secure – Allow digital signatures and password protection.

The PDF is the de facto standard for secure and dependable electronic exchange and used by industries and governments worldwide. Its a sensation in the printing world.

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Category: Adobe,Rants/Raves

Shivdev Kalambi's Blog

Shivdev Kalambi is a Software Development Manager, previously a Principal Software Engineer at ArcSight/HP. With over 16 years' experience in software development, he's worked on several technologies and played different roles and contributed to all phases of projects. Non-tech activies include Ping-pong, Rock Climbing and Yoga at PG, Golf, Skiing, Swimming & a beer enthusiast.