Oct 31, 2010

Ready.. Set.. Zoom!

The other week I was attending a technical presentation that was also being video conferenced to some of our offsite developers. While our local team has been happily using ASP.NET MVC our offsite team has been working on other projects using ASP.NET web forms. We've been loving MVC so much that it has become our standard base development technology. So this presentation was a basic introduction to MVC using PowerPoint slides and showing code in Visual Studio 2010. When it came time to show some code in Visual Studio we could see it fine on our screen, but apparently it was very blurry on the other end. Since we just recently upgraded to Visual Studio 2010 we weren't versed on all of the new features just yet and proceeded to bumble around trying to figure out how to zoom into the code. The best that we came up with was to increase the font. This apparently didn't help that much since it was still blurry on the other end.

Only after the presentation did I get a chance to see if there was a zoom feature. It turns out that there is and it's embarrassingly obvious now. It was pretty much where you would think it would be, in the bottom left corner, displaying "100%".

There are other ways to use the zoom feature and if you're using a mouse than holding down the ctrl key and scrolling the mouse wheel will zoom in and out nicely. There are also keyboard shortcuts, which are by default set to Ctrl+Shift+Comma to zoom out and Ctrl+Shift+Period to zoom in. These of course can be modified to use different short cut keys by going to Tools>Options>Keyboard and selecting View.ZoomIn and View.ZoomOut commands.

This is great, but as it turns out it still wouldn't have solved all of our problems during the presentation. The presenter wanted to show the solution explorer in VS 2010 and explain the folder layout of a typical MVC project. However, the VS 2010 zoom feature only works on the text in the code editor window. We needed something that can zoom in on our entire window and it turns out that there are numerous applications that can do this. But the one that I like is called ZoomIt. And it's made by Mark Russinovich, so you know its going to be good. As stated on the introduction page of the application page he "wrote ZoomIt to fit my specific needs and use it in all my presentations." So the next time you need to give a presentation make sure you're Ready.. Set.. Zoom!

Oct 29, 2010

Feed Me - Internet Explorer Cannot Display This Feed

Have you ever needed or wanted to view the raw XML of an RSS feed, or any feed for that matter, in IE7 or IE8? If you have you probably received the, "Internet Explorer cannot display this feed" message instead of the raw XML.

Why would you want to view the raw XML of a feed? Well if you have to ask you probably don't need to. However, if you do need or want to know how to get IE to Feed Me that raw XML then keep reading.

So what's my reason for needing to see a raw XML feed in IE? I'm currently developing web services that produce a custom RSS like feed. To be a little more specific our custom feed is based on AtomPub. So, throughout the day I constantly need to view our feed in the browser. Since, our feed isn't recognized by IE all we get is the "helpful" error message.

So, to have IE just display the raw XML all you have to do is to turn off the feed reading view. To do this uncheck the "Turn on feed reading view" setting under Tools > Internet Options > Content tab > Settings. It seems that this setting is turned on by default, so just make sure that it is not checked.

Once you do this and try to view the feed it will display the raw XML. Now, consider yourself fed for the day.

Nov 10, 2008

Sailing Books

Here is my somewhat short list of sailing books that I have read and some comments about each.
  • Sailing Fundamentals -Very good introductory book that coveres basic sailing skills and sailing terminology. An overall good introduction for the new sailor.
  • Cruising Fundamentals - Not so great but a fairly quick read and contained some useful information.
  • The Annapolis Book of Seamanship - Great comprehensive book. You can skip the Cruising Fundamentals book and just read this one.
  • Basic Coastal Navigation: An Introduction to Piloting - An excellent self-teaching textbook for navigation.
  • Don Casey's Complete Illustrated Sailboat Maintenance Manual - Great maintenance book, although I have no other book to compare it to. So far it has helped me replace an impeller, change the oil and oil filter, and winterize my sailboat. It does combine six volumes into a single book.
  • Ashley Book of Knots - An attractive, well-organized archive of more than 3,900 different knots--presented through 7,000 illustrations--the art of knot tying lives on, both as a historical reference and a reservoir of handy knowledge.
  • Navigation Rules - Essential reference. A must have and perhaps legally required to have if your boat is big enough.
  • Chart No. 1: Symbols, Abbreviations and Terms - Essential reference. A must have for charting.
  • Coast Pilot 3 - Essential reference. The United States Coast Pilot consists of a series of nautical books that cover a variety of information important to navigators of coastal and intracoastal waters and the Great Lakes. Issued in nine volumes, they contain supplemental information that is difficult to portray on a nautical chart. Coast Pilot 3 covers the Atlantic coast from Sandy Hook to Cape Henry, including the New Jersey Coast, Delaware Bay, Philadelphia, the Delaware - Maryland - Virginia coast, and the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Waterway Guide Northern 2008 - One of Americas most popular cruising guides, the Northern edition features complete coverage from Delaware River north through Maine to the Canadian border. Includes the C&D Canal, Hudson River to Tory, New York, the New York Waters, Long Island Sound, Block Island and Narragansett Bay, Buzzards Bay and The Islands, and the waters above Cape Cod Bay. Updated annually, the Northern edition includes detailed navigational information, comprehensive marina listings, helpful aerial photographs with marked routes, planning maps, anchorage information, and Goin' Ashore features on favorite ports along the way.
  • I have a few more to add...

May 19, 2007

Future Blog Content - Software Development

Software Development

Rootkit Development
Creation of rootkits and other interesting software technologies. These are new to me so this will be an introduction to developing rootkits. I will be getting most of my information from rootkit.com and the book, ROOTKITS, Subverting the Windows Kernel By: Greg Hoglund and Jamie Butler.

Microsoft Robotics Studio
Microsoft Robotics Studio (MRS) with Lego Mindstorms NXT.
MRS with respect to laboratory robotics within the pharmaceutical industry.

ASP.NET 2.0 (C#)
Developing web applications with respect to laboratory robtics and informatics within the pharmaceutical industry.