Keyboard Shortcuts? You need training!

Keyboard shortcuts are important.  They speed up just about any computer task you are working on.

If you want to train your skills, you need to train.  Check out shortcutFoo!


I’m learning the bass guitar – here are my goals for 2017.

Music Goals:

Short Term Goals (next 60 days):

  • To play in church without chord sheets
  • Successfully finish the SBL “Study Piece” challenge.
  • Record Study Piece and publish on YT
  • Record 4 songs (family jams or practices) and publish on YT
  • Start the Blues course from SBL

Medium Term Goals (by the end of the 2017):

Long Term Goals (Within 2 years):

  • Audibly recognize intervals between notes (2nds, 3rds, 5ths, etc.)
  • Get a mixer board and mics for the house recordings/jams
  • Learn to Slap

A Magic Trick with Windows Explorer?

  1. Open Windows Explorer (WIN+E is a handy shortcut)
  2. Click into the Address Bar (ALT+D)
  3. Type the name of an application that is in your PATH
  4. Press Enter.

Your application can be anything that is in the PATH.

Here are some examples:

  • CMD – Launch a command window.
  • winword – Launch Microsoft Word.
  • powershell – Launch Powershell.
  • notepad – Launch notepad.

There are more applications that you can launch. Here is the article form Channel 9 that goes into more detail.

Help! The indentation on my bullet points are wrong!

I was recently asked to help someone with some HTML. They said that the bullet points were indenting wrong.

If you look at the Results tab below first, you’ll see the difference. The top is what they had, the bottom is what they wanted.

My first thought, was that we’d need to adjust the CSS and fix/change the styling on the UL tag.

Then I saw the HTML. It was a simple change. Use proper HTML elements instead of P tags with special HTML entities and styling.

VOILA! Easy fix.

Learning SQL – A New Resource

I use SQL all the time at work. I’m a web developer (mostly using the IIS, ASP.Net and MS SQL tool chain).

Anytime I can learn some new SQL tricks or logic, I’m happy (well, actually, anytime I can learn anything, I’m happy… but that another post for another day).

I recently found out that Khan Academy has release a new SQL course.

It’s an expansion on their “Hour of SQL” they did back in December of 2014.


Ektron upgrade from 8.6.1 to 9.1 “Reference.svcmap” error

I recently upgraded Ektron from v8.6.1 to v9.1 SP1. After the upgrade when I tried to view the website, or run the project in Visual Studio I got the following error:

Parser Error Message: Reference.svcmap: Could not load file or assembly 'Ektron.Cms.Contracts, Version=8.6.1.xx, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=559a2c4fa21e63be' or one of its dependencies. The located assembly's manifest definition does not match the assembly reference. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80131040)

After much headache and many long emails back and forth with Ektron Support, I finally found an article that got me headed in the right direction.

Follow the link above for screenshots and details.

The basics are:

  1. Edit your Web Reference.
  2. Go into the Advanced tab.
  3. Clear the “Reuse types in referenced assemblies” checkbox and OK.

Converting to a specific timezone inside SSRS

In Microsoft Report Studio (SSRS), we needed to convert to a specific timezone, instead of the more common “Convert to Local Timezone”.

Here is how to do that.

First you MUST include a reference to System.Core.

Then, put this into an expression. The Fields!SomeDate.Value is my date field in SSRS.


=System.TimeZoneInfo.ConvertTimeFromUtc(Fields!SomeDate.Value, System.TimeZoneInfo.FindSystemTimeZoneById("Eastern Standard Time") )

VOILA! It now converts from the UTC date, to the Eastern Standard Time. There are many time zones you can choose from.

Progress Report #3

Report #3. I didn’t completely everything on my 2nd list.

  • I didn’t get the photos taken, or uploaded, of my LEGO creation.
  • I didn’t get started on any of the ecommerce package.
  • I never even touched the IM template I was building.

However, I did get some extra shoveling done, took a friend out to dinner, and we also had a Sunday School Soup dinner fundraiser that I was organizing and running (and I completely forgot about when I made my last list).

I also have a new work schedule, so I’m going to be headed to work 30 minutes earlier, and get out 30 minutes earlier. That should give me a bit more time in the evenings now.

  1. Work more on the CBT items I need to make.
  2. Install some games and OS updates on the kids computer.
  3. Start pulling all the receipts out of GMail for my business expenses for 2010
  4. Return my daughters broken camera for a replacement
  5. Install shelves in my office closet

Comparing Yourself to Others

In the Entrepreneur world… you often have to worry about competitors. It’s a fact of doing business. How you worry about your competitors, is where you can excel, or die.

I’ve recently been reading The Element (it’s not really about business, or work, or such… it’s about finding what your passion is… your element.)

In the book, there was a quote, that said:

Don’t compare your work to others. You’ll either feel intimidated, or you’ll copy.

Thinking about that… I realized something. They’re right. Yes, you may need to worry about your competition (you don’t want to open a new Fast Food restaurant right next door to the local McD’s, and across the street from the BK). But you don’t want to compare yourself to them. If you do… exactly what I said above will happen.

You don’t want to feel intimidated… cause then you do poor work, or don’t work at all, and your business goes down the tubes.

You don’t want to copy… cause that means you aren’t innovating. You aren’t original. You aren’t unique.

Progress Report 2

Well, I did everything on my prior progress report. So that’s a nice feeling. I even did a few extra things (because of the job, we switched banks, so I’ve been migrating all my payments and such over to the new bank).

  1. Finish, test and launch a new template for my IM endeavors.
  2. Start work for a client, testing some software, and creating CBT courses for it.
  3. Go to BAND – Windows 7 Phone development is the topic.
  4. Start the research and training for my first Blueprint Black store.
  5. Read more of The Element – and blog some of my findings.
  6. Research the Kindle
    … and put together a budget on how to acquire one!
  7. Photograph and publish my new LEGO castle creation. This will be the first time I’ve ever photographed and published it……

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