I had my annual performance review yesterday. It turned out well, but they changed the review form this year so you have like 50 different [redundant] essay questions to answer. When all was said and done, with both my answers and my manager’s answers to all the questions, the form was 26 pages long in single-spaced 12 point Times New Roman.

That’s like a novel.

When he put the finished form on the table in front of me, I thought it was a magazine. It’s huge. Crazy. I know the review process is in a constant state of flux, so hopefully they’ll flux a few of the questions, at least the redundant ones, out. Yow.

I’m still working on the stuff for the next version of Solvent. It’s going to interact more with the Windows shell, though, which is all low-level stuff, so I’m having to go back and re-learn C++ (and, subsequently, the managed extensions to it) so I can interface my C# add-in code with the shell. It’s turning out to be a lot more difficult than I first anticipated, though, and I’m learning way too much about how the shell does things (or doesn’t, as the case may be) and the C++ required to mix managed and unmanaged C++. I’ve had a couple of people at work look at it and they’ve offered some general help/direction, but no concrete examples or solutions. I’m even considering farming it out. I’ll be glad when it’s done.

home comments edit

The drywall contractors returned yesterday and patched my drywall again. Unbelieveable. It’s done, though, so now I’m going to wait until the weekend to paint it. Assuming all goes according to plan, we might even be able to finish that bathroom this weekend (minus the crown molding we wanted to put up) and start on the other bathroom we had planned to paint. We already have the paint, we just need to start. I didn’t want to start a new project until this one was finished.

With any luck…

vs comments edit

I had this weird problem for like two days in Visual Studio .NET 2003. I would be working on a project and go to the Configuration Manager screen to change some solution build properties… and I couldn’t click anything. I could change the “Active Solution Configuration,” but I couldn’t change any of the settings.

Configuration Manager No

I fought with this thing. I mean, fought with it. I reinstalled Visual Studio - no luck. I took the computer home and uninstalled every add-in I had… and that seemed to do the trick, but when I got it back to work it stopped working.

I Googled it. I searched everywhere. I asked everyone I could find. Nobody had ever heard of this.

Luckily we have Microsoft Premiere Support at work. I submitted the question to them and after a couple of hours a guy called me. He told me he had to call because he couldn’t send this one through email, and he was right.

With some dual-monitor configurations, the Configuration Manager and the Batch Build options dialogs stop working. If you switch back to single-monitor mode, it works again. I tried it, and sure enough, it worked.

That’s why it worked at home - one monitor - and why it stopped working when I got back to work - dual monitors.

After experimenting with it (thanks to Scott Hanselman) for a while it turns out the problem is when the product is running on the second monitor (or, more precisely, when the Config Manager or Batch Build dialog is on the second monitor) and the second monitor is “above” or to the “left” of the primary (so the second monitor is in a virtual “negative” space). You can drag the dialog onto your primary monitor and it will work. It will also work fine if the second monitor is “below” or to the “right” of the primary monitor - so everything is always in a “positive” space. Weird, eh?

(The easy solution if you’re having problems is to drag the Configuration Manager or Batch Build dialog box onto the primary monitor then manipulate the properties there. It doesn’t matter where VS.NET itself is running, just where the Configuration Manager or Batch Build dialog box is physically located at the time.)

They didn’t have a patch for it, but the guy did tell me it is a product issue. Hopefully they’ll have it fixed in the next version.

hardware comments edit

I have a wireless mouse at work that eats two AA batteries a month, give or take. They make rechargeable mice, but it seems like everything has a cradle or charger or something attached to it all the time, and this is no different.

Okay, so here’s your million-dollar idea for the day: Use induction to charge your mouse.

Now, I’m the first to admit that I’m no electrical engineer, and I’m probably talking through my ass right now, but I remember my physics 101

  • if you run a magnet along a wire, you get electrical current. Well, you’re constantly moving your mouse around, right? What if you could apply some sort of power source to the mouse pad to speed things up a little and recharge your wireless mouse through induction? You need a mouse pad anyway, so there’s no separate special charger or anything; just plug in the mouse pad and use the mouse - no need to recharge.

When you become a billionaire off that one, kick a million my way.

home comments edit

Last Thursday I had some drywall contractors in to fix my bathroom issues. They sanded, mudded, and retextured. They told me to wait 24 hours before painting.

Sunday morning I got up, masked everything off, and started painting. I took care of the high parts (near the ceiling) and Jenn got the middle and lower parts.

Jenn had almost finished when I heard, “Oh my God!”

That’s never good.

I went in to find that a baseball-sized chunk of texture had come clean off the wall and was stuck to the roller.

I guess it wasn’t fixed after all.

I called the drywall company who, of course, don’t have anyone in the office on the weekend, and left a message to have them call me. If I don’t hear from them by 11:00a or so, I’m calling them back. I won’t be beaten by drywall. I won’t. I’ll finish painting this bathroom if it kills me (which it probably will).

I won’t even get into the fact that we want to install crown molding in there, too. With bullnose corners, no less. I’ll have to measure the angles… here comes my high school geometry, back in action.