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Edit in Place

While not strictly a new idea, edit-in-place functionality can really expand the usability of a CMS. Normally, a CMS has a complex backend for editing content, a segregated editor screen, or buttons that have to be accounted for in the layout code. The idea here is that all output is editable (with proper permissions, of course), by merely clicking (or double-clicking) on it. Like an a local editor. These tools are not production ready, IMHO, but this guy is definitely going in the right direction, and his to-do list perfectly matches what I think needs to be fixed.

A regex for the rest of us!

Aaron's Web tip of the day. (by way of my friend skogie)

Rex V: an AJAX Regular Expression Validator

Basically, you can throw a mess of text at this thing, then enter a regular expression to evaluate, and it will tell you what matches, and what doesn't. More than that, it'll tell you precisely where the match borders are.. so if you're grabbing extra line breaks or spaces you don't want.. it'll show you why.

good stuff.

No! You DON'T need to run at startup!

Adobe Acrobat thinks I only use my computer for viewing pdfs. Apple thinks my computer is used solely for syncing my ipod. Install Shield thinks it is necessary to run in the background so that it can check for urgent updates to god knows what. Ooohh.. and don't even get me started on quicktime, and realmedia.

All of these people think they need to leave a process running in memory on my system.. 24.. 7.. 365.

Um... guys.. if all of you do that... what is left for ME to use?

Spyware is generally the reason most people start having trouble with their computers after a couple years and either buy a new one, or tap their social network for the nearest geek at hand to help them reformat. The thing is, this kind of crap is equally responsible. After 2 years, you've done so many things with your computer, and installed so many programs, about 30% of which leave some worthless hunk of code running in memory so their program will start faster, or update on its own, or whatever.

The computer is a tool. It's probably the most extensible and versatile tool in human history. You can do any number of things with a computer, but not if it's busy downloading garbage on your behalf, or checking for updates, or scanning for aliens, or grabbing the latest maps of azeroth.

So, software people.. (adobe, i'm looking in your direction*) Quit it! You're creating software at the program level for a reason! So we can run your program, and when we want to do something else, we can close your program! Otherwise we'd call your shit 'drivers' or an "operating system"

Ways to take control:

download process explorer This app used to be offered by a site called sysinternals, which recently got acquired by microsoft. : (
process explorer gives you a list of all running processes on your system similar to the windows task manager, but wayyyy more descriptive. So, for instance, instead of just seeing the exe name, it will give you its full path and supporting files.. so you can see who's it is. (and kill it.)

click start: run: type 'msconfig' This is a kickass built in app that allows you to see and disable all the crap you don't need at startup. You should use a bit of caution of course, as you could remove something you need, or kill your system's normal startup process. Experiment though.. that's what safe mode is for. ; )

*acrotray.exe.. what it does, I don't know. I'm pretty sure I don't need it though. When i uncheck this little fucker in msconfig, and start acrobat reader... it adds another new entry to my startup profile putting it back. grrrrrr.... Them's spyware behaviors!!

Modify Dreamweaver to Open files in Vim

I use Dreamweaver to edit files on a variety of webservers. It's a pretty handy tool, that has definitely improved over time. The code editor is good, but not great.

One thing that's always bugged me, is that DW won't just open a file as text if it doesn't recognize the extension. So for instance, I wanted to look at drupal's module code today (a .module) file and DW wouldn't open it, even though it was php.

No-Ka or No-... ummm... SUCK???

Okay, I just got done reading this and I swear I want to just fly to Dallas, buy some of the real Bonnat chocolate Noka's using and stand outside their shop giving it away.

Worth a read if you want to reinforce your stereotype of business types as swindling assholes:

Noka's a fraud.

HOWTO: Replace the Speedometer on a 2006 Yamaha Jog ZR

Second in my super-popular series of HOWTOs for the 2006 Yamaha Jog ZR. I replaced the stock speedometer, which topped out at 60km/h, with a Kitaco custom one that goes to 120km/h. I now know how fast my scooter goes: 70km/h.

Today I hope to get outside and replace parts of the transmission to up that further.

HOWTO upgrade the speedometer (Flickr set):

HOWTO: Replace the Speedometer on a 2006 Yamaha Jog ZR

HOWTO: Upgrade the CDI on a 2006 Yamaha Jog ZR

So as some people in the world may know, I live in Japan and have a much-beloved 2006 Yamaha Jog ZR, which I bought in Sept. 2006 not only as a means of transport (rush hour traffic jams mean nothing to me now, as I zip between cars, between lanes, and in front of stopped cars so I'm always the first through the intersection), but also as a "fixer-upper," as there is an almost endless array of custom parts available for these bikes in Japan (and elsewhere--but they all begin in Japan).

Arduino Stepper. Plus, how to run it off of a Makita Battery!

I put together another video of what i've been doing with my dorky geektoys. This is a cool steppermotor/gear assembly i got out of an old dot-matrix printer. I originally assembled it all with a mess of 4 radio shack transistors, but then i found this tutorial (and discovered that nice clean transistor array chip) which made it simpler to work with.

apple: I like itunes, but you're starting to break my mp3 player...

NPR began distributing 'This American Life' as a podcast. TAL is one of the best radio shows out there, and it kicks ass that NPR is being forward thinking enough to jump on the podcasting bandwagon.

This American Life is available for download only for the week it is aired. After that, you can buy it from Audible for a buck. As people can turn on their radios and listen to the show for free, podcasting it loses them no money, and increases their exposure/word of mouth.

Apple took this great plan and screwed it up just because they can...

For some reason Apple assumes that an iTunes library is a single, personal thing, and it would never be shared between multiple people. For that to work, everyone with an ipod MUST have a computer.. As you can't (to my knowledge) configure iTunes to support 2 libraries simultaneously on a single system.

User Verification Gone Horribly Wrong

We've got a client, named 'growingtales.com'. They do a modest amount of business on the web, and they need an SSL Certificate in order to do it. Their SSL Cert expired in October. In September I received a reminder email about renewal, and I called up their web host to renew their certificate.

I keep our client's account information in an encrypted password manager called KeePass Password Safe. So when I called up the sales people to renew the domain, I opened up the password manager and read off my 'secret word' which they use to verify me.

The nice sales person (the real humans are in sales, tech support gets their flunkies) accepted the renewal, and I told him to bill it to the card on file.

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