I am currently using Microsoft Office 7, though I understand nothing has improved in the current versions of office.

It is incredibly hard to share QuickParts, styles, style sets, and color themes among users within an organization. It turns out is possible to share QuickParts at least, if you have some mad regedit skills.

How hard would it be to have on a network, set up by default in word:
– a shared templates directory (actually, office at least has this).
– a shared quick parts directory. (hey, you can make it work, just add the right value to the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\14.0\Common\General key in regedit. Or hire someone to do it).
– a shared directory for corporate standard colors, fonts, styles, etc.

The bitter irony is that the developers of Microsoft Office use Microsoft Visual Studio, which makes it trivial for thousands of developers to share the same bits of code, but they can’t imagine a world where maybe some word users might want to share text, styles, etc. which can be modified in one place, and reused amongst everyone in an organization.

Microsoft Developers, how about an include path for anything users might want to reuse in future releases? Without making us resort to regedit!

If you try really hard, you can get the equivalent of a C #import statement in word by using the “{Ref Includetext filepath bookmarkname }” field code to bring in bookmark text from a document you can store on the network. Then you can modify the text in one place and have any document that references automatically update. Then you can put that field code in a shared QuickPart, and you are ready to go.

Sharing color schemes and style sets – I haven’t solved that yet.

Reference: Lawyers sharing quick parts

Here is what you have to do to be able to add notes to Quicksilver with Evernote.

1. install the Services plugin for quicksilver.
2. Find the evernote service. By default it is something weird, that starts with “En”. Something like EnMenuItemTitle (I don’t recall). Rename it to something like “Add to Evernote”.

put something in the quicksilver and invoke the “Add to Evernote” action by typing “AE” then scrolling through the filter results. You can right-click on the “Add to Evernote” filter result and make it the default for “AE”.

I was having an issue with on print jobs more than a few pages (each page having a relatively simple graphic, like an image or corporate logo) resulting in the printer pausing every few pages, long enough for the printer to stop heating the fuser. Then it would decide to print the next few pages, and delay for about 15 seconds while it reheated the fuser. So it was several times slower than my inkjet, maybe an order of magnitude. This was true both on network and USB stick print jobs. Brother support was able to reproduce when I sent them the PDF file, but provided no advice on a solution.

I did two things to address this, at the same time so I am not sure which item fixed it.
1. Upgraded the memory. Some brother printers have a memory expansion port. I found the largest memory module that the printer could take. I think this was the fix.
2. Sleep mode. I changed sleep time to a much longer time though I don’t think it matters.

It can be maddening when you have a PDF form where you need to enter some information about yourslef or a client, but the PDF is locked, so you pretty much have to print out the form, make the changes, and then scan it back in or fax it to someone.

Here is a workaround that doesn’t take too long:

Print to “Microsoft XPS Document Writer” which you should have in your Windows install. Save a a file like “Myfile.xps”.

Open that file with acrobat. Acrobat will convert to a PDF and open it. You can edit as normal. Of course you should only do legal things at this point, like enter in the information intended for the PDF form.

I also tried with FoxIt reader No Joy. If you have foxit you can open the xps file with the default app from Microsoft, and print to a PDF. Then open that PDF with Foxit. Takes a few more steps.

In his blog post about how some folks want to regulate the internet Mr. Heaney makes a statement

“See, it was already producing the electricity that Bob just purchased, because that’s mostly how generators work – they produce a certain amount of electricity, whether it gets used or not. It’s just that, until Bob signed up, that electricity was going to waste. ”

Of course, that is completely mistaken; otherwise we would just build generators and put them in parking lots. The reality is generators transform one form of energy (the source) into another. When Bob starts using energy, well the generator either burns more fossil fuel, or draws down more water from its limited reservoir. Generation and distribution are often constrained, so during peak demand periods, the market price will rise; in regulated markets there are all sorts of ways to try and balance supply and demand with various price schedules based on all sorts of factors.

In Mr. Heaney’s example, no energy was going to waste because Bob wasn’t consuming it; what was going to waste was distribution capacity of the network. If Bob wants energy they still need to burn some more coal or use some more of this seasons water stored behind a dam.

The transmission and distribution of electricity are generally not competitive. In many places, the generation is very competitive, but the consumer still needs to pay to get the energy delivered somehow, and the transmission network may very well be constrained during peak usage periods. It gets more expensive to deliver electricity when more people want it at the same time.

Where we might take exception to Heaney’s argument on net neutrality is that, yes, you have paid your ISP for delivery from their network to your home; however, you have not paid for the transmission of massive amounts of data from the provider (like youtube or netflix) to the ISP. Who should pay for that cost? All consumers with a broadband package, or those using massive amounts of data from youtube and Netflix? (Please don’t confuse this argument with sympathy for ISPs and the rates they charge us consumers).

The other problem with net neutrality is I want your BitTorrent and Netflix and Youtube and whatever it is people due with their Xboxes throttled a bit when I have a realtime application (like VOIP) which needs a little bandwidth, but needs priority to work well.

I have created a folder action for Mac OS X that will automatically update the GPS Assist data for GPS-enabled Sony cameras such as the HX-9V etc.

I do not currently know how to create an installer for it, so you will have to install it yourself.

The action itself was written in Automator which just drives a simple bash script.

If you want confirmation that the script actually updated your GPS Assist data, you will need to install both Growl and GrowlNotify, which I recommend. Otherwise you won’t know if the script is updating your GPS Assist data when you mount your memory card.

To get it working:

Download the Sony GPS Assist Update.workflow, unzip it, and copy “Sony GPS Assist Update.workflow” to your “~/Library/Workflows/Applications/Folder Actions” folder. It might be tricky if ~/Library is a hidden folder on your system. If it is hidden, use the Finder “Go/Go To Folder” menu and type “~/Library” when prompted.

Use the AppleScripts menu (click here if you don’t see it) and select the “Folder Actions/Configure Folder Actions” menu item.

Add the “Sony GPS Assist Update.workflow” folder action to the “/Volumes” folder. This can be tricky, directions on attaching a folder action to “/Volumes” are here.

Create a folder on your memory card “/PRIVATE/SONY/GPS” (all caps!). It doesn’t matter what you name your memory card.

Now, when you plug in your memory card into your card reader, within 5-10 seconds the GPS Assist Data should be automatically updated. You can look in the “PRIVATE/SONY/GPS” folder on the memory card and check the timestamp on the file “assistme.dat”. It should be current.

If you can create an installer that would install the workflow to the correct folder and attach it as a Folder Action to /Volumes let me know. I think many folks would find this useful.