Time is what we want most, but what we use worst. William Penn
Ever wonder were your day went, when you are sitting at the computer ? How much time you spent developing that website for a client ?
Through the time I have tried various little tools to keep track of what I am working on, for how long and possible find out how much time I have wasted on Facebook on a given day. Most of them worked just fine, but in the long run I never used them for longer periods of time. Various reasons for this but mostly the applications just did not fit my workflow, required too much constant interaction or simply didn’t have the features I really need.
I recently discovered ManicTime. Great little application that sits in the background recording your computer usage with little memory footprint.
It allows you to afterwards pull out statistics, tag time periods with specific tasks and/or see most used applications for a given time. Basically everything you need from a time tracking application.
The interface is simple to use and fast to learn. Simply put this little piece of software allows you to get a perfect overview of how you spend your time on the computer. Personally I will be using it to keep track of hours spent pr. project I am working on as it allows me to tag periods of time with specific project tags, and thus get a collected time usage for each project 🙂
You can download it for free from here: Manic Time
Everybody who has been programming on any large scale, or decent sized project involving several people will be at least familiar with revision control systems such as SVN and CVS.
One of the most popular systems at this time is Subversion (SVN), and if you are using Windows the Tortoise SVN client will most likely be your svn client of choice.
However a little know feature is the extended context menu for tortoise. Most evident if you need to remove a file from revision control but keep the file locally on your computer. Normally if you use svn delete the file will be marked for deletion, and upon next commit the file will be removed from the reposiroty AND your local machine.
Luckily there is a quick little trick to simply remove it from revision control but still keep your local copy. If you press and hold shift while right clicking the file(s)/directory(s) a new command under the TortoiseSVN menu is available called “Delete (Keep local)”.
This marks your selection to be removed from the repository upon next commit, but retains your local copy. This is especially usefull for files that should not have been added in the first place, but where you still need a copy of the file locally e.g. for building a project.
To sum up you can extend the capabilities of TortoiseSVN using your shift button! Great little tip! 😀
Okay i have been too busy lately with everything to write anything of value here. However as always i struggle to change that… no i am changing that 🙂
Today my two new books arrived, making my backlog of books to read just a little bigger. Both are written by Dan Millman, whom i have come to love the writings/teachings of 🙂 Sacred Journey
of the Peaceful Warrior and No Ordinary Moments.
In my own journeys i have also come to discover the advantages of a little meditation and hypnosis. So i am deticating some time to studying some self hypnosis, and meditation techniques to help in a stressfull everyday life. So far i really like it, and i have included a link (to the right :p) to a danish Hypnotherapist called Jacob Strachotta whom provides some free relaxation mp3’s (in danish). Also plan to invest in a product or two from his store.
Other than that i can say i am juggleing a busy everyday life right now. Programming alot more though. In fact me and a friend launched Team Bistromath (taken from a random word in Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy). We are right now only making small applications that we use ourselves but in the near future (propably weekend) we will begin our first games/mods.
You can follow our progress and mad rambling about code, the sanity of the coders and wierd ideas and bugs here – Team Bistromath
Thats all for now since i have some assignments for class to complete before work. But i can say i will have more articles comming real son 🙂 Thanks for the patience 🙂
Here is a list of my currently installed, and most beloved, Firefox extensions. Not all of them are currently out-of-the-box compatible with Firefox 3.0 RC but using the Nightly Tester Tools i can override the compatiblity check, and install them anyway. To my knowledge all of the extensions are working perfectly with Firefox 3.
Version 1.1 of my Cannon3 game done entirely in XNA is now finished.
I quickly included a small scoring system that basically updates the score throughout the game, and after the player dies it keeps the score displayed until the next game starts.
For now the graphics are the default improved graphics from the course, as I want to focus on my development, coding, skills rather than spend time making graphics for now.
But I WILL be making Cannon3 with more features. I just need to learn more about XNA to actually do so. Had some trouble getting the text displayed properly and still need to figure out a way to display it on the right side without using “magic numbers” as the solution is right now.
Friend of mine, Felizk, made this nifty little sideshow application. Basically just shows images at random from selected folders and allows you to make the current selection wallpaper, copy to desktop (drag and drop) or delete it. Further more you can select folders via drag and drop and also quickly cycle your wallpapers folder and find a new pleasing look for windows.
Okay so one of my mates introduced me to Windows Live Writer. Normally I prefer open source software but lately I have noticed an increasing tendency to use proprietary software that is freely available.
Lately I have also been using my Windows install increasingly as I have been coding XNA and C# and simply love coding in Visual Studio. I found that for day to day tasks my Linux install does most things better than Windows. Small stuff like multiple desktops makes my day easier as I use alot of multitasking.
However heavy specific tasks such as Painting (Photoshop), programming (Visual Studio) and gaming in general. I also use windows only applications for my random html coding’s (I prefer an IDE above pure text editors).
So why not give Windows Live Writer a shot. Also it provides me with the option of inserting nicely formatted code into my posts. I have been searching for a code insertion feature for WordPress for a while, but nothing works the way it should or simply does not work at all :s
So for a while I will be testing out Live Writer to post on the blog. Hopefully it will make my postings easier for me, more frequent and nicely formatted as usual!
I wish i could say i have been running aMSN for years. It feels like it, and it is almost true. However it has only been about 1 year since i discovered this delightfull alternative to MSN Messenger. Why ? Well i liked the MSN features but disliked the advertisements, extras, games and bloat i didnt need. Also i needed an alternative to use on my Ubuntu Box.
My first experience with messenger on Linux was using Gaim. It worked but lacked some fundamental MSN features since it was multiple protocol based. So i never really liked it as much as using something messenger like.
Finally i stumpled upon aMSN and i liked it. Was a bit buggy but worked for most cases. Back then nothing like offline messages and live spaces was in use mind you. Since then i have steadily been using aMSN for a long time since. Using it exclusively in fact. However i have had my frustrated moments. Mostly with file transfers failing and webcam crashing the application 🙁 But it worked and i was (for more features) using the svn edition which tends to break once in a while.
Gaim become Pidgin
Gaim later changes (Due to several legal issues with AOL and their AOL instant messenger AIM)) its name to Pidgin. I rediscover the application and test it out again. I like the simplistic feel and look of Pidgin and it performs without crashing and seems extremely stable and great. However i quickly find several small but usefull features missing; Personal Message, Offline Messages.
Wanting to use this for my windows box i start searching for ways, or plans, to implement this into pidgin. Much to my despair i find that there either (conflicting statements) isn’t a practical way, nor any way, to implement a feature like the personal (highly used) messages into Pidgin. After long searches i find that apparently this feature is in an upcoming version of Pidgin but that doest do me any good now. I finally find a solution.
I discover MSN pecan which is basically an alternative MSN protocal for use with Pidgin that enables the personal messages, offline messages and much more. Im happy!. MSN-Pecan.
I decide to test it out, and low and behold it works great!
Support for personal messages
Server-side storage for display names (private alias)
Partial direct connection support
Improved network IO
Improved error handling
Network issues tested with netem
MSN-Pecan is a nice alternative (easy install) to recompiling pidgin from source just to get some of the most used MSN features in what is an amawing IM Client. So if you feel (little) adventurous give Pidgin + MSN-pecan a whirl!