Thursday, January 29, 2004

It's the little things in life!

Aaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggggg! Okay, so it's not as important as Ctrl-Alt-Del. But this one little feature means a lot to me. Why does it have to be so obscure?

The feature I want is ImageButtons for your DataGrid commands! You can have regular buttons, or text buttons, but NOT IMAGE BUTTONS! Umm... DUH! Wouldn't that make things easy? Well... I haven't looked into the classes, so maybe I'm asking for a lot, but boy... you'ld think somebody out there would write or post something warning me. 4 hours wasted!

How do you do it? Here's how:
<asp:TemplateColumn HeaderText="Remove">
  <asp:LinkButton id="lnkbutDelete" runat="server" Text="<img border=0 src='images/remove4.gif' alt=delete>" CommandName="Delete" CausesValidation="false"></asp:LinkButton>

Notice how it was slipped into the Text attribute? How convenient. There you go, my latest rant. Why do I have to feel so stupid all the time...
I'm back!
So, let's recap. There are way to many passwords in the world. That's the long and the short of it.

Started reading Rory Blythe's blog( Funny stuff. I heard about it from .Net Rocks! The internet talk show for .Net developers. Some more funny stuff. I'm going to put a link up for it, but you can check it out here:

Be sure to tune into the live show. Anybody got some good questions for me to ask? I'm hoping for Visual Studio Enterprise Architect myself.

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Ran into this little problem on I wanted the studios that work with us to be able to customize how their customers see the pages. I figured that by letting the studio set a logo image at the top of the page, a background image if they choose, and the background, text, and link colors, they would have enough flexiblity to get our site to look more like theirs.

So I figured storing those settings in a table and programatically changing them. But it's not that easy.

The logo image was simple. I gave the image an ID of img1, and put our Image Connection logo as the default. Then in the load_prefs method I simply checked to see if there was a logo saved, and if so:
img1.ImageURL = "logos/" & prefsRow("Logo") 'prefsRow being the row in the preference table cooresponding to that studio.

However, the background image an the colors was tricky. That is set in the body tag. The body HTML tag has no class associated with it specifically, so you can't simply access it's attributes.

However, you can give the body tag an ID and a 'runat=server' attribute in your HTML, and programatically declare it as an 'HtmlGenericControl' using whatever ID you gave it:
Protected bodyElement As HtmlGenericControl

Then you can simply set values using the HtmlGenericControls' attribute property as such:

Pretty slick huh!

For more info check this article out. (dotnetjunkies again)

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

PDAs... screens are too small. Tablet PCs... too big. Can't we have a book sized computer? 5x6 screen maybe? Doesn't have to be a tablet PC, but if they could, that wouldn't be bad. But let's take a look at PDAs. I was given a Clie T665C. What a wonderful device. I carried it everywhere, read on it, played on it, tasks, dates, addresses. Even pictures, music and some short movies. It was only 66MHz and ran very smooth.

Now a co-worker has a Dell Axiom. It's a 400MHz she got after her Palm died. She moved one of her Palm Reader books over and tried to use Palm Reader for PocketPC devices... boy, was that miserable. Clicking to scroll down to the next page took 20-30 seconds.

I just read that Microsoft is dropping Smart Displays. (
You know, I would love to have my computer's power portable. If they were already streaming image data to displays, how much easier to stream a smaller screen. A medium PDA (like I am envisioning) would not need to design the screen. The PC base would already be set up to do that. Pass it as an image with an image map. Why, for that matter, you could do that in HTML. (Hmm... maybe a pet project.) Render the screen as an image, and pass the mapping data along with it... 40 times a second... hmmm maybe not. Though, you could cache the data until something changes. And streaming video? Already doing that over the internet, it shouldn't be too hard.

And wouldn't a 5x6 body give more room for features? I wish I had the capital to invest in this design. But I am sure somebody out there could agree with me and work on it... or perhaps disagree and tell me to shut up.

E-books never took off... who wants to strain there eyes to see on a small display. And on that big bright screen, it's too much. I liked to read in a nicely lit area, with my backlighting off. If I had a 5 inch screen to read with! Wow, how nice that would be. I'd bring my word docs, and web pages. It would be a beautiful thing.

Monday, January 05, 2004

Okay, after a long week off... I'm back. Now where did I leave off. I wasn't completely free from work. We moved our servers to the center of the building. You wouldn't believe how much cable we were able to get rid of. Even some old WANG cabling. Now we have to troubleshoot the cables we missed... Only 1 out of 58. Not bad if I do say so myself. And a couple of shorted network cards. Guess they left the systems on even tho we said not to. Oh well... We're back up and running, 'cept our website. We are switching ISPs and so our DNS entries need to be updated.