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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here. February 2005 Entries

Hey everyone, I'm bowling in the Junior Achievement Bowl-A-Thon in April.  Would anyone be interested in sponsoring me?  $10 gets you a nice warm and fuzzy feeling. If you're looking for more than that, I'm afraid I can't help you.

How is this geek related? Well technically it's not, I suppose, but the software company I work for is sponsoring me... so that's sorta geeky, in a cool way, no?

Posted On Tuesday, February 22, 2005 1:24 PM

I don't get it...
Can someone PLEASE explain the thought process behind these incessant comment-spams? I sincerely don't get it. This SPAM is so incredibly annoying I would never visit one of their sites even if the subject matter appealed to me , which it doesn't. So where's the gain for them? It seems like all they are doing is alienating potential customers. It's like they're trying to piss off as many people as possible, so their site won't get any traffic at all. I understand the viagra junkmail and the PayPal ......

Posted On Sunday, February 20, 2005 8:12 AM

Amazon Subscription Shipping Model
Amazon has just released their “Amazon Prime” service. For $79 per year, you get unlimited 2 day shipping (and overnight shipping for only $3.99) I don't know many people who would be willing to cough up $80 a year for this, but if you order often then I imagine it's worth it. Still, ya gotta admit it's pretty clever. I hate paying shipping costs ......

Posted On Friday, February 18, 2005 4:10 PM

The Black Art of XBOX Mods

The Black Art of XBOX Mods by Jonathan S. Harbour
Review by Chris Williams

Posted On Friday, February 18, 2005 10:56 AM

Installshield Wishlist Item #12

12. In InstallScript, STRING variables can be up to 65535 characters in length, but String Literals are limited to 255 characters. This means I have to spoon feed long strings into a variable, so many characters at a time.

Please change this.

Posted On Wednesday, February 16, 2005 9:21 AM

CLR6Coder seeks C# for long term relationship
CLR6Coder is definitely a better name than Visual BabyTalker, which was just unnecessary and inflammatory. However, I'd like to think that as time marches on, there are gradually less of those than Scott Belware implies recently. Personally I don't consider myself one, but I'm not on the jagged bleeding edge either... somewhere in the middle. And while I don't necessarily agree (ok... not at all) with his post generalizing VB.NET developers, I have to concede that I've been somewhat remiss in learning ......

Posted On Saturday, February 12, 2005 5:48 AM

GC.NUG February meeting notes
If you didn't make it to last night's Greater Charleston .NET User Group (GC.NUG) meeting, you really missed a good one. In addition to record attendance (40+ people!!), we had a great speaker (Jim Duffy), great pizza (A Dough Re Mi) and handed out over $1000 worth of .NET related giveaways! Fran Chadwick spent a few minutes getting everyone up to speed on the 2 .NET Study Groups we're sponsoring. One for VB and one for C# for those of us interested in pursuing certification, or just to learn more ......

Posted On Friday, February 11, 2005 8:37 AM

GC.NUG Meeting Tonight
If you're in the Charleston, SC area tonight around 6:00pm, stop on by... Thanks to INETA and Blackbaud, the Greater Charleston .NET User Group (GC.NUG) is pleased host Jim Duffy of TakeNote Technologies. The topic is Building Web Portals With DotNetNuke 3.0. What’s DotNetNuke, you ask? The short answer is that it’s an open source data-driven intranet or internet portal. For the long answer, please visit ( for more information. In addition to this terrific presentation, ......

Posted On Thursday, February 10, 2005 9:46 AM

Installshield Wishlist Item #11
11. If I have a function in InstallScript that accepts a STRING by reference, let me pass in (and get back) a value from a STRING array. Where ReadKey is my function and the 4th parameter accepts a STRING ByRef...STRING szWebConfigKey(20); ...ReadKey(ISMSI_HANDLE, szInstallDir, "szWebConfigKey(6)); This throws an error at compile time. So I have to do this instead...STRING szWebConfigKey(20), szTemp;...ReadKey(ISMSI_HAN... szInstallDir, "szTemp);szWebConfigKey(6) = szTemp; I can do this in VB.NET ......

Posted On Thursday, February 10, 2005 9:42 AM

Heroic Adventure!
ok here's irony... it seems every time I promise to get something done on HA! by a certain time, inevitably I can't live up to that promise. Well now the inverse is true... This weekend, after stating in a recent blog entry that there was no way I'd have time to work on HA! for at least a few weeks, I found myself in front of the computer with a few hours to kill. So I spent it in the HA! code. I fixed about 5 or 6 bugs, and wrote some new code for the trap routines. Also, I was supposed to be doing ......

Posted On Monday, February 7, 2005 12:39 PM

at least I'm not this guy

Ok, I thought I had it bad, and then Tariq sent me a link to the crap he's had to endure...

Posted On Monday, February 7, 2005 8:45 AM

Should I feel lucky?

Is everyone getting blasted with comment spam or am I just “lucky”?

I've gotten it at least 6 times in the last week. Same guy each time, some casino crap...

If we can't do something about this, I'm gonna go back to blogging on my own site.

Posted On Monday, February 7, 2005 7:51 AM

not so bright future...
Join the Television Digital Liberation Front! Today, you can use any device you like with your television: VCR, TiVo, DVD recorder, home theater receiver, or a PC combining these functions and more. A year from now, when the FCC's broadcast flag mandate [PDF] takes effect, some of those capabilities will be forbidden. Responding to pressure from Hollywood, the FCC has adopted a rule requiring future digital television (DTV) tuners to include "content protection" ......

Posted On Friday, February 4, 2005 7:39 AM

Strong in .NET?? send me your resume...
Software Engineer III Location: Charleston, SC USA Job Type: Full-Time/Regular Job Description: A great reputation is a result of great products. Great products are a result of innovative thinking. Our leading-edge Product Development team is a big reason why we are the world-leading provider of software solutions to nonprofit organizations. If you have a proven track record in packaged commercial software development, an enthusiastic team-oriented attitude and the right skill set, we've got a Software ......

Posted On Thursday, February 3, 2005 3:15 PM

Executive email

The latest missive from Bill is now online...


Posted On Thursday, February 3, 2005 2:30 PM

Installshield Wishlist Item #10
ok this is a two-parter... 10.a we need OPTIONAL parameters when creating InstallScript functions. 10.b. we need to be able to pass a param to an InstallScript function from a Custom Action. Why, you ask? Well... either would suffice. If I could supply a default value to an OPTIONAL param in an IS function, then I could (in theory) call it from a Custom Action (which currently doesn't support passing params to IS functions). Is there a workaround? Well yes, of course... I just write a wrapper function ......

Posted On Thursday, February 3, 2005 1:32 PM

inclement weather

The Roanoke Valley .NET User Group meeting for tonight, February 3rd 2005 is postponed due to snow and ice.  New date to be announced. If you must drive tonight, please be safe.


Posted On Thursday, February 3, 2005 1:27 PM

A day in the life of an install developer.

Sometimes, THIS is the type of day I'm having...

Posted On Wednesday, February 2, 2005 8:12 AM

re: InstallShield Wishlist Item #9
Ok, the reason #9 didn't make any sense to me was because I had it wrong... sorta. (It's 1:43pm on 2/1/2005 for those of you keeping track!!) original post here: http://www.geekswithblogs.n... You can control the max input on an edit field, simply by sizing the edit field to the size you want. But... let's be honest this isn't always (ever?) practical. And if you want any uniformtity in the appearance of your UI, it's just not an option. You can set a flag via ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 1, 2005 1:45 PM

Installshield Wishlist Item #9

9. Why can't I edit the max length of an edit field (textbox) in an InstallScript or InstallScript MSI project? I can do it in a regular Windows Installer project. This makes NO sense!

Posted On Tuesday, February 1, 2005 9:26 AM

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