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Welcome to MusicalNerdery.com... Home of TaskRunner 3.2 and whatever else I feel like dumping onto the vast wasteland of useless content that is "the internet". Be sure to check out:

  • The Blog: Every other idiot with four functioning brain cells has one... so why shouldn't I?

  • The Software: Get the info you desperately need to know about TaskRunner... the world's greatest (whuh?) multi-task scheduling doo-hickey.

  • The Music: Here you can find out why this site isn't just called "Nerdery.com".

  • The Forums: Would someone please, for the love of God, post something on my message board... I mean really....

Random Apple bashing and what nots....
User Rating: / 3
Written by WATYF on Tuesday, 06 February 2007 (7251 hits)
Category: Apple Bashing

I've spent so much time lately complaining about my unfortunate brush with the lousy new "Office 2007" (which I narrowly avoided , much to my delight), that I've completely forgotten to waste any of my time berating Apple computers and their pretentious users..... silly me! Cool

So let's rectify that little problem right now. I have not one.... not two.... but THREE different stories that I will use to ridicule Apple, and Macs, and Mac users, and pretty much anything Apple related in general. It should be loads of fun, so pull up a chair...

Corporate HQ saves the day...
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Wednesday, 31 January 2007 (7015 hits)
Category: Nerdery

Just as the darkest hour seemed to be upon me.... just as I was ready to give up my quest to get a decent, efficient customized GUI in Office 2007.... just as I was about to throw up my hands and give in to a life of slow, inefficient navigation at the hands of the bloated "Ribbon"....... my Corporate office saves the day.

So I'm sittin' at my desk minding my own buidness when I get an email... someone in IT informs me that Corporate has raised some concerns about us using Outlook 2007 because it causes some kind of issue with the corporate email server. My eyes lit up.... what's that I see on the horizon??? Is it a gleaming beacon of hope??!? Is there a chance that I don't have to suffer through using Outlook 2007 anymore, or possibly even --*gasp*-- any Office 2007 applications???

Getting back the old GUI in Office 2007.... sort of.
User Rating: / 9
Written by WATYF on Thursday, 14 December 2006 (25484 hits)
Category: Nerdery

Normally, right about now I would link you to a previous article about how much I hate the new Office 2007 GUI (as a means to get you caught up).... but there are just so many of them now... it would take too long. Tongue out Suffice it to say, I hate the new interface and find it extremely counter-intuitive and inefficient.... so I decided to change that.

As anyone who's spent any time looking into customizing Office 2007 knows.......... it sucks. Modifying the Ribbon is much more involved and restrictive than modifying the CommandBars, and QAT modification is a slow waste of time. The only hope (kind of) that we've been given is that whenever we use code (for Office 2000-2003) to add a button to a CommandBar, that button gets dumped into a Ribbon called "Add-Ins". Well.... this gave me an idea. Since I know how to control CommandBars quite easily... and since any CommandBars I create are gonna end up in the "Add-Ins" ribbon... why don't I just recreate the entire Menu and Toolbar system in the Add-Ins ribbon and just ignore the rest of the Ribbons.

After much toil and tears... I was able to do just that......... for the most part. Tongue out

Learning to Deal with the lousy new Office 2007 interface...
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Tuesday, 05 December 2006 (8701 hits)
Category: Nerdery

In a previous article, I ranted on about how much I hate the new look and navigation system of Office 2007. Well, this article will be less "rant" and more "informative".

As many people know, with the advent of the new Office 2007 interface, there is no longer a menu system... and there is no longer a standard toolbar system.... there are only "ribbons". If you can't find it right in front of your face on one of the ribbons, then chances are, it's gonna be hard to find and less-convenient to use. Tongue out There are also a few things behind the scenes that have to be done differently. This article will be an attempt to help poor souls like myself find all of the functionality that they've been using for years, which has now been moved to a completely different location just to make our lives more eventful. Tongue out I'll be providing some MS docs, as well as stuff that I personally stumble across or find on the net.

Note: I probably wouldn't have felt compelled to do this if it weren't for the fact that the first two major functionality needs that I was looking for were nowhere to be found in the "amazing" new "Help" feature. I searched every way from Sunday for what I needed to do and not one search result even hinted at where I could find it.

Microsoft: Slowly ruining my life... one new app at a time.
User Rating: / 1
Written by WATYF on Friday, 01 December 2006 (6815 hits)
Category: Nerdery

So as if my woes with Office 2007 weren't bad enough, today I discovered a new aspect of my daily Windows usage that has been ruined by Microsoft's latest "improvements" to their software.... and that would be File Searches.

That's right folks... "Searching" is the new thing... it's the way to do everything. Sure, it's faster to put your commonly used apps/files in a standard location and just open them directly, but wouldn't you rather put some criteria into a search box and have it return you a bunch of results, most of which aren't what you're looking for??? Or better yet... how about you put in a very specific set of criteria, and have it return you ABSO-FREAKING-LUTELY NOTHING, even though you know that what you're searching for is right there?

Well... that's what happened to me. Part of the new Office 2007 paradigm involves forcing you to upgrade to Microsoft's new "Desktop Search". They do this by annoying the hell out of you every time you open Outlook with messages about how you need to install Desktop Search, until you finally cave and go download the piece of crap and install it. Not that there's ANY noticeable different in Outlook after you install the "oh so crucial" Desktop Search tool... but hey... I'm sure it's doing something. Tongue out

So I installed it, and didn't notice any difference (except for having to remove the annoying thing from my Taskbar, and from the Startup menu, so it wasn't running in the background all day long). Yeah... I didn't notice a thing... that is... until I went to do a file search in Explorer.

Office 2007: Changing everything you've known about computing for 20 years, just for the hell of it.
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Written by WATYF on Thursday, 30 November 2006 (6474 hits)
Category: Nerdery

I remember it fondly... the days of my youth... (ok, so I can't really remember my youth at all, but that's beside the point)... The good ol' days of playing with computers... teaching the other kids in my class how to use the Commodore 64's... writing dumb little programs in BASIC that never worked... Running pointless commands on the Apple IIe's... and then came the Windows GUI. I was in love. As if by natural instinct, I could find everything. It all made sense to me. When I opened an application, I could learn pretty much anything that the application was capable of, just by looking though its menu system... the old familiar menu bar... File.... Edit.... View... Tools... Help.... ah... good friends...... its too bad that Microsoft has decided to plunge a rusty knife straight into their hearts and send them, screaming, to their demise.

You see... I've been noticing a disturbing trend lately. Every time I try the Beta (or latest) version of Microsoft software, I find that they've decided to completely change how navigation works in a Windows application. And, I guess, in some way, that might be cool... IF they were smart enough to make the same changes across all of their apps AND if the new way was actually better than the old way... but we're not so lucky. Open up the new Windows Live Messenger... where's the menu? Well... it's hidden... you can choose to display the menu, if you can find the option that does so. Tongue out Open the latest Windows Media Player... similar deal... nothing is where it used to be and finding anything more advanced than "play" and "stop" is a chore. But if you search long enough, you'll find the old menu. This is the disturbing trend showing up in much of Microsoft's newest releases. They take the navigation system that you're used to, and that works, and that has worked for countless years, and they hide it from you... only offering it up if you're smart enough to find it.

But then comes Office 2007...

Reading an XML document from behind a proxy...
User Rating: / 3
Written by WATYF on Thursday, 31 August 2006 (13536 hits)
Category: .NET Programming

Well... it's that time again... I've gone back to messing around with TaskRunner. I'm updating (and adding to) the list of things that I plan to cram into its feature-set, and doing some preliminary code tests. That's not to say that a new version will be out "soon"... but at least I'm finally back to doing some coding.

And as a result, I can take a break from the monotony of bashing Mac users, and actually post something useful. Laughing

One day into working on TaskRunner again, and I already have run into the typical scenario: I think of something simple that I want to do, and go out in search of a straightforward solution, only to find that no one seems to want to do it the easy way. All those C# nerds out there are too good for a three-lines-of-code solution. Wink They've gotta go making up a bunch of classes and methods and properties and crap just to do what can be done in a few short lines. Well I'm a VB.NET hack, thank you very much... I don't wanna have to add classes and functions... just tell me how to do it in two lines or less. Cool

So without further ado, I present... how to read an XML document, when you're behind a proxy (in 5 lines or less Tongue out)...

Best Mac Slam... ever.
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Monday, 21 August 2006 (5031 hits)
Category: Apple Bashing

I just thought I'd take a quick minute out of my busy day to pass along a very funny conversation I was witness to just recently. You see... I take pride in my Mac-bashing... I'd like to think... in some small way... that I'm actually good at it.... but alas... there are those who are much, much better than I am at pointing out the absurdities of Mac zealots... and here's a perfect example.

 (But first... a little backstory...)

The program I use to record audio is called Pro Tools. It was originally written for a Mac, so many of the "pro" studios who use PT run it on Macs. The fact that Macs are the "standard" platform for PT only feeds the "elitist" attitudes of Mac users who get into pro audio... ok... so now that you have the background... here's the funny part...

Hacking a Mac... the easy way!
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Thursday, 03 August 2006 (7024 hits)
Category: Apple Bashing

In my continuing quest for things I can use to make fun of Macs and Mac users as much as possible, I stumbled across a little article today about some very interesting vulnerabilities in the latest Macs.

It appears that a couple of hackers have found a way to completely take over a Macbook in mere seconds, using nothing but it's wireless connection. That's right... completely take over the machine. Not just plant some trojan on it... or run some spyware in the background... but gain complete control over your machine, as if they are sitting at the keyboard themselves (doing things like deleting all of your important files and saying mean things to your friends using your iChat).  Apparently, one of their motivations for presenting a demo of a Mac being hacked was what they called the "Mac user base aura of smugness on security". Which, as you all know... I would staunchly disagree with... I mean really... Mac users...? Smug...? That's just ridiculous!

Anyway... I would say that this is a pretty good find.... but that would be the understatement of the year... so I won't. Instead, I'll just tell you more about the hack (and how you can witness it yourself), while throwing in a couple stabs at Mac users, just for kicks.

My only good story...
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Thursday, 15 June 2006 (5105 hits)
Category: Misc Mentations

I was reading a blog the other day and the author was asking people to post their most interesting personal story. After a brief scan of what little memories I have of my life, I came to the conclusion that I was a very boring person, seeing how I couldn't think of one good story about something I'd experienced. But a day or so later, I was reminded that I did have a somewhat notable event happen to me, so I typed it all out and posted it on the site. I figured I might as well put it on my own website as well, seeing how it's the only semi-interesting personal experience that I'll ever have to offer.

When I was in my late teens, I worked at a used auto part yard on the far south side of Chicago... there were a number of VERY interesting characters who worked there, one of which was "Ned". At least... I'll call him Ned to protect his identity. He was pretty new at the yard and, I swear, he was the spitting image (in personality more than looks) of Ned Flanders. He was always chipper and dorky and "okeley-dokely" and what not, and he didn't quite seem to be "all there". Anyway, Ned was going to unknowingly have a large impact on my life... which I'll get to later.

More cool touchscreen crap....
User Rating: / 0
Written by WATYF on Wednesday, 14 June 2006 (5847 hits)
Category: Nerdery

A while ago, I posted a link to touchscreen UI that was being developed that looked like it had good potential. Well, here's another twist on touchscreen UIs. Instead of a back-lit touchscreen, this one uses touch sensitive projections (on a tabletop device) and voice commands. It doesn't look quite as cool (visually) as the last one, but functionally, it does a good bit more. They're integrated the UI into a few different kinds of software (Google Earth, Warcraft3, etc) and shown how it can be used in a fairly practical manner. Pretty cool stuff.


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