Deep Thought For The New Year

One of my all time favorite quotes, from an outstanding book that I believe everyone on this planet should read.

Pale Blue Dot

From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it’s different. Consider again that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

Continue reading Deep Thought For The New Year

Trimming your wallet with Evernote and NFC

Originally posted on September 27, 2012

Costanza's Wallet

“This isn’t just my wallet. It’s an organizer, a memory and an old friend.” – George Costanza

If you find yourself tilting to one side while you sit, due to the size of your wallet, it may be time to use technology to put your old friend on a diet. While I never had the pocket filing cabinet problem of poor old George Costanza, I did want to strip my wallet down to the bare minimum. I chose to do this not only for convenience, but also for security. The less important things that you are carrying around town, the less you have to worry about replacing in the event of a loss or theft. Also, a much slimmer wallet would allow me to switch to carrying it in my front pocket, for even more security. Continue reading Trimming your wallet with Evernote and NFC

The Backyard Office – Part II

Originally posted on October 9, 2010

Continued from The Backyard Office – Part I

Now with the shell of the structure in place, it was time to tackle the interior. I spent quite a bit of time planning what I wanted the finished version of the interior to look like and what features I wanted to support. Adding things to the office (like electrical outlets) is much easier to do when there is nothing but studs on the inside. Trust me, you do not want to have to add anything major once you’ve got the drywall up and finished! Continue reading The Backyard Office – Part II

The Backyard Office – Part I

Originally posted on September 26, 2010

With the approaching birth of our second child, it became obvious that our 3 bedroom home was going to get a lot less spacious…and that I would have to give up my “office”. I use the term office a bit loosely since it is really a room to house my toys (i.e., computers, CDs, guitars, gadgets, etc.). I do actually work quite a bit from home as well, so it does have to function as a real office too. Having a spare bedroom in the house is very convenient, but explaining to your two kids why they have to share a room just so daddy can have an office might out weigh the advantages. Continue reading The Backyard Office – Part I

Querying a database directly from UltraEdit

(This post was originally published April 23, 2009)

Using UltraEdit’s powerful external tool integration, this article will show you how to submit an SQL query directly from UltraEdit and have the results returned directly to the editor.

This example uses Microsoft SQL Server 2000, but the basic technique can be applied to most any database tool. Continue reading Querying a database directly from UltraEdit

Adding an Automatic BCC to Outlook

(This post was originally published April 23, 2009)

Note: This article is a bit out of date (in regards to newer versions of Outlook), but contains some interesting information in the comments section (which is reproduced here). At some point I will bring this article up to date, since I might have some new use cases for this functionality (i.e., automatically archiving posts to Evernote).

By using the built-in rules in Outlook you can automatically CC an email address on outgoing messages (and even specify additional criteria like keywords in subject lines, etc.), but there is no option to use BCC. This article will show how to modify Outlook to automatically BCC an email address on all outgoing messages. Continue reading Adding an Automatic BCC to Outlook

Preventing an automatic reboot after Windows Update runs

If you have Windows Update set to run in the middle of the night (as most of us do), it is rather annoying to return to your computer in the morning only to find that it has automatically rebooted due to an installed update. There is a way to prevent this from occurring, but it does require a registry hack (Windows XP/Vista/7/8).

  • Run regedit and browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREPoliciesMicrosoftWindows
  • Create a new key under Windows and call it WindowsUpdate
  • Create a new key under WindowsUpdate called AU
  • With AU selected, in the right-hand pane right-click and create a new DWORD. Call itNoAutoRebootWithLoggedOnUsers
  • Double-click the DWORD and give it a value of 1.
  • Reboot and Windows Update will stop automatically rebooting your computer.

How to retrieve data from an Oracle database with VBscript

(This post was originally published September 21, 2006)

This article will give you a brief example of how to create a VBscript process that can retrieve data from an Oracle database. The techniques presented here can more than likely be adapted to connect to other databases as well. I’ll walk through a script that I wrote to solve a small problem with a web-based application that I support. The finished script will also touch upon techniques for logging and setting the date/time from within a VBscript process. Continue reading How to retrieve data from an Oracle database with VBscript

Random Musings