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It has been a frustrating day for me.  I rarely use my eReader, though I am feeling really lost without it.  I guess the worst time to lose a book is while you are in the middle of it.

I am currently on my second Kindle. I purchased my first Kindle in June of 2011, a generation three w/ keyboard.  I used the reader off and on over the year, probably reading around a dozen books, maybe twenty tops.  This Kindle began locking up and would not power on any longer one day.  Working with support, the device was out of warranty and I was sold a new one for $50 or so.

I used this second Kindle to basically read the Harry Potter series all the way through and put it in a drawer, where is stat for around six months.  A few weeks ago when I went back to use the Kindle it wouldn’t power on.  It makes sense, I am sure the battery was drained.

I put the unit on charge overnight and was ready to go in the morning.  I looked at my book list, hey I have read all these already.  I put the Kindle down on the end table, where it sat for another two weeks.

Last week I located a teaser book I was interested in and sent it to my Kindle.  One night I sat down to read it, was completely consumed by it and purchased the full book when I got to the end.  I read for another four hours that night without issue.  It was 02:30 when I went to bed, what was I thinking?

The next day I started to read the book again.  At the fourth or fifth page turn my Kindle locked up! What? Really?  Come on.  Over the next couple of days, I went through all the typical crap to get it to work, including a factory reset.  I just slowly got worse and worse.

This morning I called Kindle support, and of course this Kindle is not under warranty.  I guess it only had 90 days warranty for some reason.  What you get when you buy a re-manufactured unit.

I really just want the Kindle to work, it doesn’t make sense why it doesn’t unless it is my electronics karma coming back to bite me.  20+ years of messing with electronics, computers, etc. I guess they are fighting back.  Just like the time I get around to paving my own computer and there are nothing but roadblocks along the way; but I digress.

Long and short, I am not going to get another Kindle.  The yearly failures have become like a service charge, and if I wanted that I would have my own Prime account.  So once Google decides what they are doing with the next Android version and release the refresh Nexus 7, I will purchase one of those and read from it, and surf, and leave it in a cafe somewhere… 🙂

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I feel bad I am late to the game on this, but the most important part is that I am in the game.

For more information about SOPA and PIPA please use google or these links:

I really like the writeup in the Dreamhost blog.  If these bills go through it will be the end of the Internet as we have known it. And not for the better.

And of course this blog too will be shutdown on the 18th.  Sorry to my one follower, but it all for the better.

I ran into a styling issue last night and it is driving me nuts.  I have found a work-around, but I want to see if I can figure out how to do this way.

I have a span tag which I am using for a button.  This button calls a JavaScript function to test blog posting settings.  I am using a span because it was easy enough to style.

CSS:


#VerifyBlogClick {
/*#696969*/
color:#575757;
border:1px solid gray;
background-color:#eee;
padding:2px 5px 2px 5px;
margin:0 0 0 13px;
border-radius: 2px;
}
#VerifyBlogClick:hover {
color:Black;
background-color:#bbb;
cursor:pointer;
}
.verifierRunning {
padding-right:30px;
background-image:url(ajaxloaderBlue.gif);
background-repeat:no-repeat;
background-position:right;
}

HTML:


<span id="VerifyBlogClick" onclick="javascript:verifyBlog_click()" title="Tries to send an unpublished test post to your blog">Verify Blog</span>

JavaScript:


$('#VerifyBlogClick').addClass('verifierRunning');

// ... stuff

$('#VerifyBlogClick').removeClass('verifierRunning');

Basically what I have here is a span styled like a button.  When the button is clicked I add the class .verifierRunning to the span tag using jquery. This class changes border-right to 20px and defines a background image (a loading image).

The problem that I am running into is that any properties defined in the id selector are not overridden by the class.  It seems that id’s always have a higher precedence than a class.  I can’t believe that there isn’t a way around this, though I have not been able to find anything on the web which will work.

My work-around this is to change VerifyBlogClick to a class.  I don’t mind doing this, I would just like to find out a way to do this the other way.

It has been /interesting/ working with Entity Framework (EF).  With my first couple of sites I used Linq to SQL, and I really liked it.  It’s pretty simple once you get the gist of it.  Though now Microsoft recommends the use of Entity Framework (EF) and Linq to Entities.  Well using Linq against EF is really no different then Linq to SQL so the transition was pretty simple.  Here is a good beginner walk-through I ran into.

The part I like most about EF is Code First.  I can define my classes, relationships and inheritance and EF creates the database for me.  Need to add some properties, no problem, add them and remap (or recreate) the database.

Sure there are a few short comings like no foreign key constraints on none primary keys.  This is a pretty big deal, but nothing that can’t be handled in code (at least for my small sites).  I wonder how it’s handled with database first models, I’ll have to experiment with that some day.

The other shortcoming I found is with date fields.  It seems EF automatically works with database datetime2 field types but only creates datetime field types in its database create scrips.  This perplexed me for some time until I discovered what was really going on, and the temporary fix is pretty darn simple.

Each time you create a new script by running “Generate database from model…”–the script which is created is opened in Visual Studio (eg. myModel.edmx.sql).  Before you run it or close it, do a find and replace on the file.  Yes you guessed it, find datatime and replace it with datetime2.  Simple straight forward and works like a charm, as long as you remember to do it.

Happy coding!

I’m sure its not unique to the Chicago-land area but since shortly after the dot com demise in ’99 furniture stores have had many “going out of business” sales. In the beginning  it seemed sad that all these stores where going out of business; some of them even more than once (wtf).  Now it is just a joke and obviously a scam to get sales.

See most people automatically feel they are betting a “deal” when a place is closing down, clearing stuff out, etc.  Though in all honesty it’s shit, udder, stinky crap.  Walk into 99% of these “going out of business” stores and you will find very high prices and stock of all the stuff that doesn’t really sell well (crap).  This is because all of the good stuff was put into a truck and sent to some other store to be sold.  That other store too will be closed down in short time.  I really think this is the furniture stores new business plan, open for a year and “clear out” stock and move to a new lease.

In Orland Park Illinois there was a store I respected for some time.  Many members of my family, including myself purchased furniture there.  About 4 years ago they had a going out of business sales, I was honestly sad they where going away.  Well as you probably guessed, they are still there, it was nothing more than a scam to increase sales.  Bullshit if they sold enough to keep the doors open.

Look around any Saturday, how many human signs do you see standing around promoting “going out of business” furniture stores?

Comcast Domain helper service, a DNS breaking service which shows you search results when you try to access a site which doesn’t exist on the Internet (e.g. http://blah.blah).

Ever since I noticed this “service” on my Comcast account I have disabled it.  I don’t like it, I don’t want it, and basically it breaks the basic workings of DNS on the internet.  If a site doesn’t exist, I want a cannot be found error, not search page which is cached in my browser and forever holds the bad domain as real in my history.

So this evening I jump on the internet and mistype mail.yahoo.com, as I so often do for some reason, and notice that the Domain helper service is enabled, AGAIN.  This has to be the fourth time the service has reactivated itself on my account.  So I go out to my Comcast account to shut it down and notice that the option to do so no longer exists!  What!?

I call Comcast and the person on the phone is as befuddled as I am, plus not so happy that the option is missing from his home account also.

I have been on the phone for 33 minutes now while a resolution is trying to find a solution to this.  The end result at this point is that an “IT” ticked has been opened and this support person is to call me back with a status.

I wonder if I will ever actually receive that call?

UPDATE:

It is now Friday, August 6th, basically one week since I called Comcast and I have not heard back from them at all.  Not like I really expected to, though it would have been a nice change.

I am not looking forward to it, but I must fight my way through Comcast option-hold hell/support once more…

Update again:

Well the support joker never did call me. What did I expect, really support from Comast? No chance of that.  The good news is that the place on the Comcast customer site again has the place to disable the service.   YEAH

I have been using Planet SMB hosting for a year or more now, and find them to be an adequate host who give a lot of stuff for the dollar.  I wouldn’t run a high availability application on them, but than again, I am not doing that, so it all works out.  I highly recommend them for any developer who needs a place to showcase stuff and use as a staging site or fee-based hosting site for their clients.  To clarify, when I say high availability, I don’t complain about them having downtime, because I really don’t experience much at all.  The issue I do have is wait times.  For applications to spin up, and the Plesk Panel which seems to always be painfully slow and times out. No phone support, though emails are usually answered in a decent amount of time.

The issue I had with Plesk is that when I setup my domains (I get 5!) an expiration date was set on them.  So today at some time they just stopped working!  WTF!  I know I never set this date, is this some strange default which was set?

I set in a critical ticket to PlanetSMB and it’s been 15 minutes and no reply.  In this case I figured out what happened, but I still want to see how long it takes to reply to my critical ticket.

UPDATE: So this is cool, I heard from PlanetSMB Support (Mike Eldredge actually, the owner) in 16 minutes with a good answer to my issue.  So he was right on it with the critical ticket, Yeah Mike!

Chomping at the bit to get ASP.NET MVC up and running on my regular hosting environment, iHostasp.net, I sent their support a ticket today asking if they plan IIS7 installations in their shared hosting environment.

Brett Slaski
Posted On: 29 Apr 2009 10:50 AM

Greetings,

I just wanted to check to see if there is an ETA on any IIS7 installations for shared hosting?

Thank you,

Brett

Their response, unfortunately:

Clint Schleeper
Posted On: 29 Apr 2009 02:06 PM

Hi Brett,

At this time we have no plans for incorporating IIS7 into our shared hosting environment.

IHOST, LLC
Customer Support
https://support.ihostllc.net
support@ihostllc.net
Local/International: 1.440.793.0323 x2
Toll-free: 1.800.593.0238 x2

So now I have work to do, find a host with a like offering as iHostasp.net running IIS7, is there such an animal?  I have tried in the past and haven’t come up with anything so any suggestions is highly appreciated.

I find it ironic that I needed to send iHostasp the support ticket today, from work, out of the blue.  When I got home today, my copy of Professional ASP.NET MVC 1.0 arrived on the door step from Amazon.  A book I pre-ordered shortly after the release of Scott Gu’s free first chapter, now available in HTML.

Please post comments if you know of a good hosting company providing shared hosting of IIS7.

Thank you.

My current plan, which runs around $16/mo, $88.83 every 6 months.  I have to say the two things I like the best is dedicated memory pool for each domain and 3 MS SQL databases.  Three databases was the major reason I went with them in the first place.

  • Dedicated application pool for each domain!
  • Customer accessible database backups!
  • Storage – 2400MB
  • Bandwidth – 20GB
  • DNN Installations – 3
  • Parent portals – 60
  • Child portalsUnlimited
  • MSSQL 2005– 3 x 250MB each
  • MySQL 4/5 – 6 x 250MB each
  • MailUnlimited POP3/SMTP/IMAP/WEB MAIL Accounts. Accounts. MailFoundry spam & virus filtering included.
  • FTPUnlimited FTP accounts with ability to set user permissions.
  • Sub domains – Create & manage your own 3rd level domains.
  • Statistics – Detailed real-time statistics to track your visitors.
  • ASP.NET 1.1/2.0/3.0/3.5, ASP 3.0, PHP5 supported
  • Microsoft ASP.NET AJAX extensions
  • Can run wide array of other ASP, PHP, .NET based web applications without any limits

This is a bit silly, but I couldn’t resist.  I replied to their support email and simply said

Please?!

And their reply:

Hi Brett,

We do not have IIS7 available within our shared hosting environment and do not have any plans to incorporate it in the near future. However, we do offer virtual dedicated server hosting environments and we could set you up with IIS7 on a virtual dedicated server. Our virtual dedicated server packages can be viewed at the link below.

iHost Virtual Dedicated Server Hosting Packages:
http://www.ihostasp.net/HostedAppliance/Default.asp

IHOST, LLC
Customer Support
https://support.ihostllc.net
support@ihostllc.net
Local/International: 1.440.793.0323 x2
Toll-free: 1.800.593.0238 x2

UPDATE: (4/17/2010)

It was really interesting to me that the owner of iHostasp.net left a message on this blog post about their service and how it was incorrect for their technician to say what they did.  But the truth holds; it is now April 17th of 2010 and still they have no known installations of II7 in their shared hosting environment.  What if I would of took him for his word and stayed with iHost?  I would be stuck and still without the environment I need.

Trying to make good of your company is one thing, making up stories is something completely different.

One sunny day in January, 2009 an old man approached the White House
from across Pennsylvania Avenue, where he’d been sitting on a park
bench.

He spoke to the U.S. Marine standing guard and said, “I would like to go
in and meet with President Bush.”

The Marine looked at the man and said, “Sir, Mr. Bush is no longer
president and no longer resides here.”

The old man said, “Okay”, and walked away.

The following day, the same man approached the White House and said to
the same Marine, “I would like to go in and meet with President Bush.”

The Marine again told the man, “Sir, as I said yesterday, Mr. Bush is no
longer president and no longer resides here.”

The man thanked him and, again, just walked away.

The third day, the same man approached the White House and spoke to the
very same U.S. Marine, saying “I would like to go in and meet with
President Bush.”

The Marine, understandably agitated at this point, looked at the man and
said, “Sir, this is the third day in a row you have been here asking to
speak to Mr. Bush. I’ve told you already that Mr. Bush is no longer the
president and no longer resides here. Don’t you understand?”

The old man looked at the Marine and said, “Oh, I understand. I just
love hearing it.”

The Marine snapped to attention, saluted, and said, “Looking forward to
seeing you tomorrow, Sir.”

–Sorry not sure who wrote this.

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