Monday, March 30, 2009

Cool!

My friend Jeff and his company wrote the BeefyBoard iPhone soundboard app!

Check it out here!

http://www.beefyapps.com/

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

iPhone 3G Battery Draining

There are a lot of sites out there on problems with the battery on the iPhone 3G and most of them are helpful. However after trying all of the solutions with my iPhone yesterday I was still having an issue where the battery was draining in under 4 hours. This problem started yesterday morning and nothing seemed to have transpired that would seem to be the root cause of the problem (I didn't change any settings and I didn't add any new software). I finally found a solution by doing the following. This assumes that you have a Microsoft Exchange account setup in push mode.

1) Write down the settings for the exchange account.
2) Delete it within the iPhone settings.
3) Reboot the phone.
4) Add it back.

This stopped the battery drain and everything is back to normal. It seems that somehow the account was erroring and it was polling the exchange server ALL THE TIME thus using the battery up very quickly.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Scribe Insight - Dynamics CRM Integration

As I don't have a tech blog, I thought I would throw this up as a resource to the people out there using Scribe Insight for Dynamics CRM integration. I am slightly dissapointed with the amount of in box documentation that Scribe gives you with the product. They rely on technical support calls and training programs (both of which cost money in the long run, especially training). This is NOT an acceptable support model for developers.

I will update this list as I find more...

  • The default setting for threads on the CRM adapter in Insight is 8. This can cause problems if you have many sequential look ups that will do an insert if the look up value does not exist. Set it to 2 on the Integration tab in the console to limit it to 1 thread outbound and 1 inbound. This of course will have performance impacts.
  • Scribe cannot see CHILD workflows in the CRM application. It can only see parent workflows, even if you make sure to name the workflows 'ScribePub', etc. This means that filtering workflows on the CRM side is not possible and the Scribe script has to do itself (bad performance choice in my opinion). The source of record should publish, and the integration layer shouldn't have to do the filtering of messages.
  • Scribe Console is a bit buggy in places. Make sure you refresh your views.
  • On the Execution Logs page, your filter time appears to be 24hr based, but the displayed time is not, which can be confusing if you are not paying attention.
  • Make sure to use lookup functions in the scripts to find the foreign keys for values
  • There is NO XML search function. You have to manual parsing of the data, which is very hard to develop and maintain (this is a huge whole in their integration tool)

More to come...

Post any questions to the comments and I will try to get back to you.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Hmmm... What to post?

Well, we are back from Europe now. Actually we got back about a month ago. Perhaps I will at some point begin to update the blog again. I guess I have to figure out something to write about.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The travel blog

Hey, if you know our last name, check out our travel blog. We're in Germany right now :0)

www.travelingLASTNAMEPLURALIZED.blogspot.com

Monday, September 08, 2008

Might I remind you...

Dear Mr. Troll,

It's your Karma. Look for it in the form of weird little things - like inopportune red lights, broken shoe laces, hairs that you find at the *end* of your meal, blisters that fester, neighbours with things you want, sassy responses by random strangers to your unfortunate web existence, sneezes on you in the elevator, zaps as you leave the car, and pink chicken that leaves you wondering if the shits you have are from the food or from the stress that lives in your colon when you are a mean person.

Leave Karma to your imagination. You've already invited the dark kind into your life.

And, you smell funny.

Mmmmmm... Crustaceany

Today I saw that Subway now sells a $31 foot-long double lobster meat sandwich.  The location I was at had sold only one since they started offering them.

Two questions come to mind:

1.  What do you put on a double lobster meat sandwich? 
2.  Who buys a double lobster meat sandwich?

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Thinks it is funny....

I think it is funny when people who have no backing to their argument and not a leg to stand on criticize me for my spelling and grammar.

That is the last resort of the unsubstantiated internet argument.

Get out of your mom's basement and get a fucking life you troll.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Memory Express Sucks

Update:

It's been years since I posted this about Memory Express and it is the number one hit for our pretty much defunct blog and comes up as a top search request for 'memory express'... period. Needless to say I know the company has changed over the years and I think they have made a diligent effort to change and improve their customer service. So with that, I am taking out the harshness of the original post and just noting that following:

- They had a price on a product that I purchased on one day
- The next day I noticed it was cheaper on an online competitor and went to do a price match
- They wanted to charge me the full overnight shipping from the competitor, which would have not made it a price match at all
- The manager on duty was rude to me
- The next day they dropped the price to beat their competitor
- The manager was rude to me again

I know they have fixed their price matching policy to be reasonable (even better then competitors). I know they have expanded and they are still one of the better places to buy products. I do not know if that jerk of a manager is still working their, but if they were smart they should have kicked him to the curb.

So, I think this is a great demonstration of a company that can fix something that was blatantly wrong and move on.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Best. Search. Request. Evar.

Got this one in the search request logs:

"we have a craftmatic bed our remote broke is there any other way to get the head and the foot to go down"

Monday, August 18, 2008

Um - Hi Mom :-)

I guess this old thing is 'out of the closet'....

tee hee

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Firefox Color Management

With Firefox 3, you can set a configuration to allow a better quality image (color, etc.) to be show instead of a 'web normalized' image. There might be some performance hits when looking at web pages as their default colors might be a bit off, but it sure makes Facebook pictures look a lot better (in my opinion).

Check it out here.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Purdy Pictures

Rea was given about 14 fairly high end camera lenses. Most of them are Nikon form factor, so today we went and bought a Nikon D80 DSLR. I have to say it is impressive how easy it is to take a really good picture with the camera even though I have no idea what I am doing. Now we have a semi-professional camera with a bunch of lenses that Rea can use to take really nice pictures as well as doing more weddings.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Canada Day Long Weekend in Radium Hot Springs BC

We are going camping for 5 days this long weekend at Radium Hot Springs again. This year we decided to be pro-active and booked ahead with the Parks Canada Reservation website to get a spot Redstreak just behind Radium on the hill in Kootenay National Park.

For those of you reading this, and you are not going out late Thursday or early Friday and you don't have a reservation, good luck. You will likely not have a spot available for you. If that is the case I recommend driving down the ravine to the Canyon Creek RV park as it is fairly nice. Other options are the few provincial parks to the North and South (these will be first come first serve and book up fast as well).

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Best Plans of Mice and Men

Today we were going to go hike Ptarmigan (Parmesan) Cirque at the top of the Highwood Pass in K-Country. We drove all the way out there to discover that it was still frozen with drifts of 1 foot deep snow. Needless to say since we were just wearing shorts and t-shirts and I was not smart enough to bring a jacket, we did not even try. I guess the road did just open a few days ago but for some reason in my head I thought it would be warm, summery and not snowing. For those who don't know, the Highwood Pass is the highest driveable 'main' road in Canada. It connects the rest of K-Country with Longview and is closed until June 15th. The hike up to the cirque is a little steep, but the meadow at the top is incredible.

Instead we drove a bit farther to Cat Creek and did the little 2-3km hike there. It was nice, and it had a couple of warm sunny moments, so it was a decent compromise. The trail on the creek has an up and down portion when you hike over the glacial till, and then about 10 minutes of walking along the creek up to a nice little waterfall. Unfortunately at that point the trail stops because of a sheer rock wall, so it is pretty much impossible to get and further up the creek from that vantage point.

In the parking lot we saw a group of 5 guys stumble out of the woods with their packs, so I assume they have either been lost for a couple years or were more likely just camping out over the weekend. Looks like something I would like to try sometime, and now since I have a decent pack for such an endevour, I might have to give it a whirl.

Today was one of the warmest Sundays in a long time so we saw lots of fancy cars and motor bikes out on the highway for their Sunday drive. At one point we passed a group of probably 100 bikes.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

For all those who are seaching on Google for Slip Covers

Slip covers suck. Just buy a new couch. Nothing you can do will make you couch suck less, even adding a ill fitting piece of fabric over top of it.

Monday, June 16, 2008

You Will Not Pass



Today Rea took a little orange traffic cone, a sign that stated 'Use the Flyover and Not Our Neighborhood' and stood at the first turn off into our neighborhood and gave everyone who did a U-turn a dirty look. She got many waves hello, horns blown and thumbs up by our fellow residents who have gotten tired of people always using out convenient area of Lakeview for U-turns when exiting onto Glenmore Trail from Crowchild Trail. It can be quite dangerous at times as there are kids playing in the area and people using the crosswalks where everyone is trying to do their illegal turn around.

We have made complaints to our alderman in the past and they did have police out for a couple of weeks earlier in the year and there was a large flashing sign for about a month but unfortunately the police never came back and the infractions started up again.

I think she might go out again tomorrow. Hopefully she doesn't get yelled at. Maybe some other people will join her.

One thing we noticed though, as in who the demographic is of an illegal U-turner is that they are generally white, and drive a relatively expensive car or SUV. There seemed to be an equal distribution of men to women, but generally if it was a man and younger they were a douche bag with stupid hair and drove an incredibly offensive vehicle. Some of the younger girls were your typical 'clueless and a cellphone' type.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Money Can Buy You Everything

I was reading today that some of the Google Executives are setting up a fund (and agency) that they are contributing each $5 million to so they can go into space. While I think this is really cool, I have to wonder what the real value of spending that much money for what is a brief experience. Sure, you get to go to space, but it seems really condescending to the rest of humanity that you would be willing to spend THAT MUCH MONEY for a transitive experience. If they all contributed that much money to certain charities, families could have houses, diseases could have cures, they could have a tax write off and many other things.

What is more fulfilling, going into space for a couple days, or saving many lives?

Perhaps they already have contributed millions of dollars to charities in the past, but the publicity that this generates seems quite negative, in my mind.

The other thing that really irks me about this whole concept is that they are often called 'astronauts' when they are through with their bought spaceflight. Just because you ride a rocket into space doesn't make you an astronaut. It kind of cheapens the title for those who have risked (and given) their lives in the past to further humanity's knowledge and place in the universe.

Note To Self When Installing Silverlight 2 Beta 2...

When given the opportunity to upgrade from Silverlight 2 Beta 1 to Silverlight Beta 2, make sure to verify that the controls you are using will be compatible with the new version. Also make sure not to do this the day before a demo.

Take note of the sites that mention Breaking Changes with the new version.

Also note, that once you figure out how to roll back, the site that you need to download the OLD files from might be overwhelmed because today is the release day of the new version.

You will likley have to uninstall EVERYTHING on you machine that references Silverlight because it is tied to the new version.

Finally, figure out how manually extract an MSI chainer file because the validator in it is picking up things that are not really there and will prevent you from reinstalling the old version. See here.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Kind of a bad experience

Last week, we bought a mouse (the Apple Mighty Mouse Wireless Bluetooth model) from Westworld Computers in Calgary. Westworld is one of the few 'Apple Authorized' dealers in the city, so since we had bought our Macbook from them, we decided to use them to get the mouse as well. We bought the mouse, without testing a floor model with a like computer. This is the first nail in the coffin for us having a bad experience.

As soon as we got the mouse home, we noticed that we had to turn the 'mouse speed' setting all the way up to get it moving reasonably fast. This should have been our second hint that this was not going to work out.

After about a week of trying it on various different surfaces and scenarios we found the mouse overall was kind of sluggish feeling and not particularly accurate. It was difficult to use photo editing, and was just not a good overall experience. Further research online led me to find out that it had received somewhat bad reviews for the same reasons I had found, so we decided to take it back.

I emailed the salesman we had spoken with (who was actually very nice and helpful and it isn't his fault the store has strange policies) about our problem and he said that they would take it back, but with a 15% restocking fee. 15% for a mouse!

I realize that they are a small store (well, they do have 4 stores across the region so they are not THAT small), but why would they charge me to return something like that? I also realize that stores do not HAVE to offer return policies, but it really is in their best interest otherwise they get all sorts of bad PR (kind of like what they are getting right now). In addition to this, when we bought the Macbook, they said that if we didn't like it, and wanted to return it, it would be a 25% restocking fee because they would need to have a tech format, restore it and then sell it at a an open box discount.

I could have gone to either BestBuy or Futureshop to buy these products and I would not have had any of these 'stipulations' around the sale. Why would I buy anything from them in the future, if they are not offering the customer service options that their competitors use? Sure I can have them show me how to use the product a little better than some person at a big box store, but is that worth the cost I just incurred?

I think that this is in juxtaposition to the fact that Apple pushes that 'you will love your Mac if you try it' and that they are a progressive and customer service based company. If you don't love a product they sell, shouldn't they take it back no questions asked?

Finally, in addition to this, it should also be noted that they did not offer me the full 'educational employee' discount Rea gets with the Apple.ca website for the actual Macbook itself. I considered this an OK cost to get the product right away, but now thinking back it was kind of a rip-off if they are supposedly an 'authorized' reseller.

Anyhow, buyer beware. They offer great staff and products, but Westworld Computers return policy is a little bit out-to-lunch in regards to return policy and I do think it will likely prevent me from purchasing from them in the future.

Update

We just noticed on the receipt that we were charged 25% restocking and not 15% as was advertised. I have sent an email to see if we can get this corrected.

Another thing I forgot to mention is that another mouse was offered to us (Logitech, not Apple) to see if we like it better. Of course we would still have to pay the restocking fee on the Apple product we were returning. However, we would also have to pay it for the Logitech device if we had issues with it as well! They were also not able to provide us a demo of the mouse because it was in a clam shell packaging.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Not such a great idea...

I had a great idea of getting a goat to mow my lawn for me. I figured in the winter when the grass didn't grow we could just eat the goat, and get a new one in the spring!

Coincidently, on the exact same day the Straightdope posted about the same topic!

It had to be ewe: Could sheep replace the lawn mower?

Apparently the upkeep of goat/sheep would be more work then just actually mowing the lawn. I am so dissapointed...

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

McNally Robinson

Apparently, the McNally Robinson location on 8th Ave. downtown is closing because their building has been sold and will probably be turned into 'Yet Another Condo Building' (YACB) or some lame store front selling overpriced shoes or something. This really really really sucks as they were the best large bookstore in town, and really the only good technical bookstore I have been in since the one on 17th Ave closed. They will not be opening up in Calgary again, so we are back to relying on Chapters and Indigo for all our book needs (which means I will be doing a lot of ordering from Amazon).

So for those who need their technical books ordered, Monday is the last day to do so. Too bad the book I want is set to release next Thursday, because now I can't order it.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Big Mac Attack

So, we finally broke down and bought a new computer. Rea and I had been living off my work notebook for the last few years. Although we did get an Asus eee a few months ago, we decided that now was a good time to get a new PC. I have been up in the air for the last year on whether I wanted to try a Mac this time, and a opportunity to try a colleagues at work let me decided that it was definitely worth a shot (the Mac ran Windows faster than my own fast developer Windows PC).

Now we are the proud owner of a bottom spec Macbook. I didn't want to drop more then that in case we hated it, but I have to say that this little machine is awesome. Everything just works. I have not had one iota of a problem with this computer. Everything sets itself up, and it is so user friendly. Sure, we can't run Picasa on it, but that was easily solved by running a Windows XP machine in parallel.

So, if you are at all interested in a new computer, I would recommend you seriously consider a Mac. I know my next computer will be one!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Wow...

So, since I had to reformat my work PC and decided that we were not going to use it at home anymore, I dug out the OLD laptop from underneath he couch. In the tool bar of Firefox was a link to the blog, so I figured I might as well post something here. I also noticed that we still get A LOT of hits everyday and still have some strange search requests.

Anyhow, since this laptop is from 2002/2003, I think I might get a new one as my Asus eee is a little small for everyday use and we really need two notebooks to make ourselves happy. I am thinking of getting a Macbook this time, just really as an experiment. You can get them pretty reasonably from Apple refurbished and apparently they are brand new (just open box, etc.).

Anyhow, lets see if I can get this blog going again. I am taking the bus to work now so I should have many rants about Calgary transit sooner or later.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

 

 

 

 
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