Friday, April 27, 2012


I've covered a number of topics quite extensively in the past when it comes to tips for websites and blogging.

Rather than repost everything here, I'm just going to link to my other blog:

Thursday, April 26, 2012

User Checklist

I like checklists.. like this one from here:

I've highlighted the issues I've had...

  1. When you call us to have your computer moved, be sure to leave it buried under half a ton of postcards, baby pictures, stuffed animals, dried flowers, bowling trophies and children’s art. We don’t have a life, and we find it deeply moving to catch a fleeting glimpse of yours.
  2. Don’t write anything down. Ever. We can play back the error messages from here.
  3. When an I.T. person says he’s coming right over, go for coffee. That way you won’t be there when we need your password. It’s nothing for us to remember 300 screen saver passwords.
  4. When you call the help desk, state what you want, not what’s keeping you from getting it. We don’t need to know that you can’t get into your mail because your computer won’t power on at all.
  5. When I.T. support sends you an E-Mail with high importance, delete it at once. We’re just testing.
  6. When an I.T. person is eating lunch at his desk, walk right in and spill your guts right out. We exist only to serve.
  7. Send urgent email all in uppercase. The mail server picks it up and flags it as a rush delivery.
  8. When the photocopier doesn’t work, call computer support. There’s electronics in it.
  9. When you’re getting a NO DIAL TONE message at home, call computer support. We can fix your telephone line from here.
  10. When you have a dozen old computer screens to get rid of, call computer support. We’re collectors.
  11. When something’s wrong with your home PC, dump it on an I.T. person’s chair with no name, no phone number and no description of the problem. We love a puzzle.
  12. When an I.T. person tells you that computer screens don’t have cartridges in them, argue. We love a good argument.
  13. When an I.T. person tells you that he’ll be there shortly, reply in a scathing tone of voice : “And just how many weeks do you mean by shortly?”. That motivates us.
  14. When the printer won’t print, re-send the job at least 20 times. Print jobs frequently get sucked into black holes.
  15. When the printer still won’t print after 20 tries, send the job to all 68 printers in the company. One of them is bound to work.
  16. Don’t learn the proper name for anything technical. We know exactly what you mean by “my thingy blew up”.
  17. Don’t use on-line help. On-line help is for wimps.
  18. If the mouse cable keeps knocking down the framed picture of your dog, lift the computer and stuff the cable under it. Mouse cables were designed to have 20kg of computer sitting on top of them.
  19. If the space bar on your keyboard doesn’t work, blame it on the mail upgrade. Keyboards are actually very happy with half a pound of muffin crumbs and nail clippings in them.
  20. When you get a message saying “Are you sure?” click on that Yes button as fast as you can. Hell, if you weren’t sure, you wouldn’t be doing it, would you ?
  21. When you find an I.T. person on the phone with his bank, sit uninvited on the corner of his desk and stare at him until he hangs up. We don’t have any money to speak of anyway.
  22. Feel perfectly free to say things like “I don’t know nothing about that computer crap”. We don’t mind at all hearing our area of professional expertise referred to as crap.
  23. When you need to change the toner cartridge in a printer, call I.T. support. Changing a toner cartridge is an extremely complex task, and Hewlett-Packard recommends that it be performed only by a professional engineer with a master’s degree in nuclear physics.
  24. When you can’t find someone in the government (or any) directory, call I.T. Support.
  25. When you have a lock to pick on an old file cabinet, call I.T. Support. We love to hack.
  26. When something’s the matter with your computer, ask your secretary to call the help desk. We enjoy the challenge of having to deal with a third party who doesn’t know anything about the problem.
  27. When you receive a 30mb (huge) movie file, send it to everyone as a mail attachment. We’ve got lots of disk space on that mail server.
  28. Don’t even think of breaking large print jobs down into smaller chunks. Somebody else might get a chance to squeeze a memo into the queue.
  29. When an I.T. person gets on the elevator pushing $100,000 worth of computer equipment on a cart, ask in a very loud voice: “Good grief, you take the elevator to go DOWN one floor?!?” That’s another one that cracks us up no end.
  30. When you lose your car keys, send an email to the entire company. People out in Birmingham like to keep abreast of what’s going on.
  31. When you bump into an I.T. person at the grocery store on a Saturday, ask a computer question. We do weekends.
  32. Don’t bother to tell us when you move computers around on your own. Computer names are just a cosmetic feature.
  33. When you bring your own personal home PC for repair at the office, leave the documentation at home. We’ll find all the settings and drivers somewhere.
  34. In no way do we believe that end-users are ungrateful. It hurts our feelings that one could even think such a thing on the basis of the above statements. In truth we wish to express our deepest gratitude to the hundreds of wonderful end-users portrayed herein, without whom none of this would have been remotely possible.
Yeah, that's a lot of headaches over the years... how do you do?

Friday, April 20, 2012

Changing the text colour in the Blogger Twitter Widget

 If you're like me, and use non-standard colours on your blog, then you might find that some of the widgets you want to add, just don't work.

This solution works for Twitter, but you might find it works for other services.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Feedburner Socialize Hack

 Google Feedburner used to offer a "Socialize" feature (under the "Publicize" section) for blogs that would connect to your Twitter and automatically tweet links to all new blog posts for you. It was a great way to advertise your blog to people who may not follow your RSS or are glancing at your Twitter feed.

As of the writing of this post, this service has been removed from Feedburner, but still works. Who knows if Google's planning on getting rid of it in the future? But for now, here's how to use it yourself...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spam Bot Poetry

Behind a full computer prevails the abolition adult. Why does the enlightening blanket succeed underneath a butter? The religion mends with the fear! The tongue snacks after a satellite. How can a handful pose an important tome? The penny liberal enlarges the bat in the perceived snow.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Securely boot a computer with auto-login

There are plenty of situations where you'll want to ensure a program starts when the computer does. Best case scenario, these programs start as a Service... meaning, they'll run in the background as soon as the computer hits Windows and BEFORE you log in. Unfortunately, there's plenty of specialty software out there that doesn't run as a service, and requires a user to log in for it to start. (From the "Start Up" folder, registry, wherever)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Facebook LIKE fixed

I noticed the "Like" button for some reason switched back to Wargaming Tradecraft's FB page for some reason... That's fixed now, so feel free to LIKE Tech Tradecraft and visit the FB page, ask a Q or 2.