Archives / 2009 / January
  • Sending Mail via GMail with AspNetEmail and .NET

    Periodically, I need to send out announcements to a list of emails pulled from a database.  This is a pretty common problem, and a long time ago I found RapidMailer from Dave Wanta aka AdvancedIntellect which does a pretty good job and has all the source.  However, I’d been using it with my web host provided SMTP/POP3 provider for years, but since I recently moved my accounts to Google Apps (for the tons of free storage), I had to figure out how to configure RapidMailer to work with GMail. After some searching, I found a post by Dave himself describing the necessary pieces for sending mail via GMail and AspNetMail..  Specifically, since Google requires TLS security, or … more

  • Goals for 2009

    Wow, I'm really getting a late start on this post.  I'd meant to come up with some goals for the year back at the start of the month, and here it is nearly February and I'm just now getting to it.  So before the kids start screaming or some other emergency distracts me, here's some quick things I'd like to achieve (personally, not business) by the end of 2009: Get In Shape (obligatory) - I'm hovering just past 200 pounds at the moment.  I'd like to be no more than 190 by 1/1/10.  As a sub-goal, I'd like to be 1 pound lighter on the 1st of each month than I was the month prior. Biking - Last year as a family we only managed to go biking about 2 or 3 times.  This … more

  • Ultimate Developer Rig 2009

    I'm writing this on my Ultimate Developer Rig of Jeff Atwood fame from late 2007, which a number of folks online built over the last year or so.  Dustin Campbell was nice enough to provide a NewEgg wish list that included all of the requisite components, and Lake Quincy Media actually bought and built two of these things from that list.  However, as you'll see if you follow the link, a large number of the components are now unavailable.  Plus, it's been about 15 months since these specs were first put together, which is a long time in the world of personal computer hardware.  So, as I continue to try to avoid reinventing the wheel, I would like to know who has recently … more

  • Copy Pictures To Folders By Date Taken with Powershell

    For about the millionth time, I was downloading the photos from my digital camera and organizing them into folders by date... by hand.  I've tried a few different tools to do this in the past and have always ended up going back to a manual process for one reason or another.  So this time I grew fed up (again) with the inanity of the process and decided I'd use PowerShell to accomplish the task, as it seems made for the job. Of course I searched first for others who had done this - it's hardly a problem unique to me.  I pretty quickly found someone who not only had gotten it to work but had some pretty nice links to help for those new to PowerShell.  Hans of course also … more

  • DevReach DVDs

    Earlier this week, I received a package of DVDs from the DevReach conference I was invited to speak at last October.  I've already written about my experience with the conference, but the arrival of the DVDs was a welcome surprise.  Sure, you usually get such things at TechEd or PDC, but a small regional conference like DevReach?  I wasn't sure what to expect.  After checking out some of the content, I was immediately very impressed.  The packaging is extremely professional, as is the software for browsing through the session content.  The actual video content is very high quality, both in terms of audio and video.  The staff involved in the capture and … more

  • CodeMash 2009 Aftermash

    CodeMash 2009, the third annual Ohio conference (and as far as I know, the largest Ohio developers’ conference), was by all accounts a great success last week.  I was privileged to be a speaker at the show but also got a lot of value out of the networking opportunities and other sessions.  Mary Poppendieck was also speaking, and it was great to get the opportunity to meet her and her husband Tom, as their books on Lean Software Development have been very valuable to me.  I finally met David Laribee, also speaking, for the first time as well.  It’s very impressive the kind of draw CodeMash has, and this year the event was sold out or even a bit over-sold, with many of the … more

  • Latitude D830 Vista BlueScreen

    I'm rebuilding one or our laptops and it's had a few bluescreens immediately upon Vista launching for the first time (it had Vista on it before I decided to pave it).  Going into safe mode, I was able to identify that the last thing it tries to do is load crcdisk.sys.  Searching online, I was able to find two possible solutions: The laptop has 4GB of RAM (2x2GB).  Remove one of the DIMMs and try again. (source) (source) (MS Update) The laptop has a bios setting of Onboard Devices -> SATA Operation: AHCI.  Switch it to ATA.  (source) I tried the first one and this let it reboot the first time, but then it started BSODing again once I started doing Windows … more

  • XBox 360 - Home Media Center

    Recently I picked up an HP MediaSmart EX470 Windows Home Server to help consolidate my files at home and to provide a simple backup solution.  It’s been great and it’s an extremely economical way to get backups.  You can hook it up with Amazon S3 using JungleDisk and get simple offsite backup of the files (but not the backups) easily and cheaply as well, and JungleDisk is just one of many plugins available.  I recommend the 500GB version for the price, as you can pick up a 1.5TB hard drive to plug into one of the extra bays for under $150.

    One of the many plugins for the WHS is a media streaming one that makes it very easy to use the WHS from your XBox 360.  … more

  • Online Media and the Death of DRM

    In one of my recent posts I mentioned that I have a Zune and quite enjoy it as an MP3 player.  Prior to it, I swore by my iRiver player, which was *tiny* and ran on just a single AA battery for about 12 hours per battery.  One thing I really liked about the iRiver was that you never had to worry about whether or not it had been charged.  It was always ready to go, and if it did run out of power, AA batteries were easy to find.  However, its capacity (128 MB or 256 MB I forget which) was a bit lacking and it didn’t do games or videos and its software for syncing with my computer was really a pain to use (why they didn’t just make it a freaking drive I don’t understand – … more

  • Cool Games

    Like many others, I enjoy playing games in my short supply of free time.  I used to be a bigtime PC gamer who scoffed at console gamers, but in the last few years the consoles have really caught up to the PCs in a lot of ways, and now I’m just about 100% an XBox360 gamer when it comes to video games (I still play the Starcraft occasionally, though).  Luckily, my wife (mostly) shares my love of games, and is happy to play with me, though she prefers boardgames to video games. We both think games are a great way to get to know people and build a sense of team, so at Lake Quincy Media we buy lunch for the whole company and play games during lunch, which usually turns into 2-3 hours … more

  • 2008 Goals Recap

    Last year I decided to blog some personal goals that I had for the year.  It’s widely known that the act of writing something down greatly increases the chances that one will actually take the action necessary to achieve the goal, and I figured blogging it might further increase my odds since there’s the whole public commitment factor added in.  I’ll be brief since I already did an 11-month status update a month ago, and not a huge amount has changed since then. I’d hoped to hit 200 blog posts for the year.  In 2007 I managed 144 posts.  In 2008 I wrapped up the year with 184 blog posts if my count is correct (I moved my blog mid-year, so the counts are coming from two … more

  • Zune Feature Requests

    I’ve been the proud owner of a black Zune 30 for a couple of years now.  I think it’s great and I really don’t foresee a need to get a Zune 80 since I’ve never come close to using the 30GB of space available, even when I’ve put a dozen or so movies on the thing.  The upgrades in software have been nice, though I do miss the quick list feature that used to be there on the device. Of course I noticed last week when, on New Year’s Eve, my Zune wouldn’t boot.  A lot of discussion ensued and some resorted to dismantling their Zune to try and fix it.  I opted to wait it out, expecting it was a date error related to its being the 366th day of the year, and it turns out that was … more