Some Google fun
Monday, January 28, 2008 10:24:23 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Thanks to Chris Anderson for this one -shame I missed it the day he posted it due to mega issues but worth sharing:
- Goto Google (www.google.com incase you're that uneducated :P)
- Type into the search "find Chuck Norris"
- Click the "I'm feeling lucky button"
Well it made me smile at least
*Goes off to find a good CN movie*
Registration opens for the UK launch of Visual Studio 2008 -in Birmingham
Friday, January 18, 2008 12:13:38 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
For those of you Microsoft readers I thought I'd let you know I've just had an email come through about Visual Studio's UK Launch. It's happening on March 19th 2008 in Birmingham's ICC. Registration has finally opened and you can register here: http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=8126604
Alternatively check out the live cast at: www.heroeshappenhere.co.uk.
Why am I excited about this? Well the last launch event I went to gave away free -and full- copies of Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005 to every delegate! Hope to see you there -let me know if you can make it.
Fantastic new -and cheap domain name registrars
Wednesday, January 16, 2008 12:59:38 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
After our recent issues with Fasthosts (or as they are now fondly referred to in the office - Farcehosts) I have made the conscious decision to move away from them completely over the forthcoming months (probably years). We no longer have any clients on their hosting platform but we still have circa 300 domain names registered through various accounts through their sister company UKReg.
Due to the authority's charges, we can't just transfer all these domains away as it'd cost us a fortune (and possibly one we can't recoup) so I'm going to do it as they expire. In our search to find an alternative provider someone suggested we check out the new kid on the block - Heart Internet. According to those in the know on Underscore they are a bunch of guys who used to work at 1&1 and decided they could do it better.
So far I've found their service to be great -and value wise they're cheaper than most providers which is a bonus. As with most of the providers these days it's all managed through their easy to use online control panel which is pretty straight forward. If you're on the lookout for great value or cheap domain names give Heart Internet a look.
BTW if you're wondering where Heart Internet's .co.uk domain names from 9p is, check under the transfer fees. Still £2.59 is a great price for any .co.uk!
How to: Remove users from the ASP.Net membership database
Sunday, January 13, 2008 8:37:44 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
I'm sure I've blogged about this in the past -or perhaps it's just in my "to blog about list" but I thought I would share this little ditty on the Sunday night.
If you ever need to delete a user from your ASP.Net Membership database this is a really useful SQL script to do just that (I often find that the ASP.Net web administration tool throws a SQL Exception while trying to delete a user).
To use the code to delete a user from the ASP.Net membership database simple identify the Guid of the user and enter it where I've written 'THE GUID OF THE USER HERE' and hit go :)
ASPNetGODECLARE @UserId uniqueidentifierSET @UserId
= 'THE GUID OF THE USER HERE'DELETE FROM
UserID = @UserIdDELETE FROM
UserID = @UserIdDELETE FROM
UserID = @UserIdDELETE FROM
UserID = @UserIdDELETE FROM
UserID = @UserId
The message I was referring to above usually looks something like the following:
Msg 547, Level 16, State 0, Line 9
The DELETE statement conflicted with the REFERENCE constraint "FK__aspnet_Us__UserI__17036CC0". The conflict occurred in database "ASPNetMemberships", table "dbo.aspnet_UsersInRoles", column 'UserId'.
The statement has been terminated.
I've not looked into why it's happening (I expect it's something to do with an incorrect install on my behalf) but I'm sure there's a solution for it. I know there are a couple of built in SQL scripts i.e. aspnet_Users_DeleteUser but they required more params to get working ;)
Registration opens for Visual Studio 2008 launch events... but the UK doesn't exist (yet!)
Thursday, January 03, 2008 2:38:19 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
This mad me smile, when surfing around at lunch I stumbled across www.heroeshappenhere.com -Microsoft's Visual Studio 2008 launch site. I got all giddy with excitement, downloaded the latest version of Silverlight and woohoo -a registration link! Finally!
Sadly though, you can only register for the LA event at the moment. Check the "Outside of the US" drop down though, it'll make you smile (or at least it did me) -notice anyone missing? (Other than France that is :P)
The King Daddy of Office chairs - Herman Miller's Aeron
Wednesday, January 02, 2008 9:47:13 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
If you've found this article through a Google search I expect like me you've read a plethora of articles and blog posts that vary from saying how amazing the Aeron is, to how the Aeron is an over-priced relic of the burst dot com bubble of the 90s. Well this one is my take on Herman Miller's Aeron.
Before buying my Aeron I decided to make use of Herman Miller's trial Aeron, this isn't something they make you overly aware of so if you're thinking about getting a new office chair, contact your local representative (or the Herman Miller website) and ask if you can hire one for a month. It'll cost you somewhere around £40 but it'll at least allow you to see what you're getting before outlaying £400+. The trial Aeron took a little getting used to which I've put down to the fact that my posture in the old chair was seriously bad but after a week or so I was sitting very comfortably indeed.
One of the simpler things I liked about the Aeron was the fact you can raise it up higher than many other chairs, this is important for me as my desk is 4-5 inches too high which means I'm always sitting incorrectly. By raising the Aeron up a little more I was able to sit with my arms flat on the desk reducing shoulder and back ache considerably. Another aspect of Herman Miller's Aeron chair that I liked was the fact you could adjust the resistance of the back, again a simple; but important feature, it takes a little trial and error but you can get the balance just right so it lifts you up into your position but doesn't stop you from leaning back to relax (or in my case kick back when you do something right).
Rather than having a cushioned fabric seat, the Aeron has a mesh that stretches a little to offer the same comfort padding does but without the worry that in 2 years time, the padding turns to something more like cardboard (which is one of the factors that prompted my search for a new office chair). The downside I've found with this mesh is it overly aerated which in my case means my bum is kept very cool (and back which is a good thing as sweatiness is reduced to a minimum) -great in the summer but in the winter brrrr!
The main downside to having the Aeron is the price, as I wanted a grey one, I had mine imported from the States and paid a premium but you can pick up the basic spec chair for around £400 (and probably less if you do a little bargaining), baring in mind the 12 year warranty these chairs carry it should in theory outlast 3-4 £99 type office chairs and look after your back in the meantime. Being somewhat of a scrooge, I looked at it from the POV that the difference between what I would spend on new £99 chairs in the warranty period of the Aeron would only be a matter of £200 or so which equates to around 5p per day. That's got to be worth it :)
On the whole though I really like my Herman Miller Aeron, I feel it has really helped my posture and although I didn't really suffer from back ache after a long day (probably down to my canoeing) I feel that the small investment short-term will pay off in the longer term. I consider the chair a luxury and so wouldn't splash out on it if I were a start-up as there are far more important things to get sorted first! That said, if you're planning on spending long hours in your chair from the outset maybe it is worth the expense from the start.
It's worth stating at this point that in addition to trying out the Aeron, I also tried out Herman Miller's alternative offerings and a number of alternative office chairs but I didn't find I got the same comfort.
I did a lot of shopping around for a suitably cheap(er) supplier and was surprised to find out that the supplier just down the road from me was able to offer the cheapest price by far (ignoring delivery etc) so check out Creative Box in Birmingham, Kate from Creative Box in Birmingham was more than helpful and patient in answering my 101 questions so I'm sure she'll be able to help you out too.