Tag: Computing

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Computing, Internet, Technology

Ignite in the rear-view mirror

One week after Microsoft Ignite 2017, and I think it’s a good time to take a look back. The keynote speech by Satya Nadella was inspiring. I have to admit, the discussion about quantum computing went over my head. The one question I have: If Windows 10 crashes on a quantum computer, does the universe come to an end?

I enjoyed connecting with and meeting several of the speakers and presenters. A few to point out: Brad Anderson, Corporate Vice President of the Enterprise Client & Mobility Team; Michael Niehaus, Microsoft DIrector of Product Marketing; Dona Sarkar, Head of the Windows Insider Program at Microsoft, along with the other #NinjaCats: Blair Glennon, Jason Howard, and Jen Gentleman, among others.

Listening to some of the Windows deployment speakers, such as Mike Nystrom and Johan Arwidmark was incredibly informative. These guys are well-known for their blogs relating to SCCM deployment and it was great to talk with them in person.

Also, this is cool:

Brad Anderson’s Lunch Break featured Brad riding a golf cart around the bus loop at the Orange County Convention Center. Participants could ask Brad anything… My question for Brad didn’t make it to the video, but my selfie did! The entire video can be seen here:

The most beneficial speakers and sessions I’ve linked to below:

All presentations and slide decks are available at the Microsoft Ignite website for viewing. Nerds of the world, tune in and see what you think!

Computing, Technology

90’s CGI memories

I’ve been undertaking a project recently to convert old VHS/VHS-C/Digital video tapes to a digital format to store on my home network Synology. It’s nice to have a backup and it’s also nice to be able to pull up any home video just within a few clicks.

Well, I happened to stumble across a video from 1990 titled “The Mind’s Eye.” It’s a collection of late 80’s CGI animation that obviously pales in comparison to the stuff in theaters today, but it certainly showed “what was possible” with technology, even in those early stages of computer animation.

Imagine my surprise (not really) when I discovered that the entire video is available on YouTube. So that’s one less video tape I have to convert…

Among the nuggets in the video is Stanley & Stella in: Breaking the Ice. It was the first computer animated short that I can remember emotionally connecting with. Give it a watch.

If you don’t want to sit through the entire Mind’s Eye video, you can find Stanley and Stella right here. Enjoy!


Windows 10 Office Preview Apps – App Can’t Open?


So, I’ve been running the Windows 10 Preview for a few weeks now, and it’s pretty stable. For some reason, the laptop I’m using it on seems to run hot all the time. The fan runs constantly even with no apps open. Maybe there’s some kind of “cooling driver” I need to install. Who knows?

Anyway, shortly after I installed Windows 10, I found the free Office App previews available from the Windows Store. I really liked being able to tie my OneDrive documents right into the apps. Things were running really smoothly.



Suddenly the Office Preview Apps wouldn’t open anymore. This had been going on for a few weeks now, and just this morning I happened to stumble across this tweet from Gabriel Aul:

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The OneDrive Troubleshooter…

I’ve recently become a big fan of Microsoft’s OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) service.  Apparently, the renaming conincides with Microsoft’s new “One” rebranding.  You know… XBox One and all… Well, anyway, I do like the service, and thanks to bing I have about 109gb of storage “in the cloud” that integrates well with the OS.

Or I should say Did integrate well with the OS… After my most recent computer purchase I noticed a small problem…

So for a little while now I’ve had an issue with Microsoft’s OneDrive that prevented me from regularly accessing most of my files from within Windows 8.1.  The error message itself was not very helpful:

Error: 0x800040A41: No description available

That is, of course, one of the least helpful errors of all… A little bit of searching revealed a little-known tool called the OneDrive Troubleshooter. This tool provided that step-by-step guide that I needed to get my files available within Windows 8.1 again.

Click Next to continue the troubleshooter.

The troubleshooter will ask if it’s okay to send information to Microsoft. Your call.  That doesn’t bother me any, so let’s move on…

You’ll then have the capability to Reset OneDrive which is what I chose that led to resolving my problem.

There’s not much to it, but after running the OneDrive troubleshooter my OneDrive documents are once again available to me straight from my desktop!

This link provided the help that I needed.

Computing, Technology

The most viewed picture of all time?

Some believed it was CGI. But here’s the real story behind one of the most unforgettable desktop wallpapers in history, “Bliss.”

The story is told by photographer Charles O’Rear, a resident of nearby Napa Valley, California.

As Microsoft finally puts Windows XP out to pasture, here is an interesting story about one of the most viewed photographs of all time.

Computing, Internet

Are Tablets Ruining Watching TV Together? [Gizmodo]

This is a nice read from gizmodo.com. I’ve often pondered this kind of thing, especially during American Idol season. Every year for the past five seasons I’ve written a little blog review of the contestants performances while watching Idol. I always put my comments down as they come to mind, as to not be influenced by the judges.  In other words: I wanna get there first! But often, I’m tapping away at an iPad screen while sitting beside my wife, who undoubtedly would rather be watching TV without another shiny, gleaming metal object in the mix…

So, anyway, take a read:

TV socializing is something of an oxymoron to begin with. When we sit down to watch the tube together, we’re mostly together in the strictest technical sense—couch proximity. We might share popcorn, or laugh in unison, or murmur something about how so-and-so got fat—but it ain’t exactly a meeting of the minds. Our eyes—and brains—are focused on the screen. So is adding a tablet to reach thousands estranging us from the actual people we’re with?

Click here to read the rest of this article from gizmodo.com

Computing, Technology

BlackBerry shows us their “PlayBook”

Research In Motion (RIM) shows us a preview of their business-oriented tablet, the BlackBerry “PlayBook.”

This could become a competitor to Apple’s iPad, considering that a lot of businesses already have BlackBerries in place and existing BES servers in place.  This might be a natural evolutionary product.

More details can be found at BlackBerry’s site, but the basics of the hardware include dual HD cameras (front and back), a 1GHz processor and a new tablet-based OS developed by QNX software.


Change is Good. Change is Bad. Change is Life.

Interesting article I read online:

In a lot of ways, our job in IT and Information Security is implementing change.  But as we all know, every change involves risk, and changes gone bad can be your worst nightmare.  I’ve seen the number of business system service interruptions due to changes in infrastructure pegged… [more]

via Change is Good. Change is Bad. Change is Life..


Start Me Up

Well, it was fifteen years ago today (August 24, 1995) that Windows 95 was launched to a worldwide audience.  (My favorite headline from the USA Today newspaper actually said Worldwide Wait for Windows 95 ends.  Funny.)

I was in Pittsburgh, Pa. for the launch event.  I have a whole bunch of pics on flickr that were taken that day.  Here are a couple of my favorites:


This one is a collection of all the Windows 4.0/95 paraphernalia that I collected over the months prior to release, as well as preview program discs and SWAG picked up from Pittsburgh.  Also included: the USA Today articles from the week of the launch.


It’s cookies! The Windows logo filled with red, blue, green, and yellow sugar cookies.  Kind of gives a new meaning to “Windows cookies.”

The product launch was pretty amazing.  Here is a YouTube video that sums up all that went on at the Microsoft campus before and during the launch:

Even though I enjoyed the ads, it still escapes me why Microsoft would ever use a song that contains the lyrics “You make a grown man cry” in the commercial to sell their Operating System…