Archive for October, 2007

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Somebody got burned…

October 31, 2007

I came across this warning list of things to look for when trying to identify a scam publisher. It’s pretty comprehensive and mostly good advice. I get the feeling from the tone of the writing – especially the list of nasty companies and websites at the end – that the person has been badly burned by the ‘get rich quick by publishing your own book’ schemes.

I like the title of the page too – ‘Preditors and Editors’. Clever.

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Two great resource lists

October 31, 2007

The Online Education Database has two terrific resources in its online library:

You could spend WEEKS checking these out…

 

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Sick of Windows XP wallpaper choices?

October 27, 2007

Then get yourself over to Crestock.com for some stunning images you can download for free and install as wallpaper on your computer. They’ve provided 30 free images in two sets:

Awesome!

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Pixel to em converter

October 26, 2007

Cool tool for anyone trying to figure out what a font size in pixels is in ems (Yes, I know that’s maybe three of my readers, but what the heck – by posting it here I’ll remember it!)

It’s here: http://riddle.pl/emcalc/

[Link last checked August 2012]

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Young, white, male…

October 25, 2007

I just downloaded and opened the 2007 Web Survey run by A List Apart earlier this year. I was one of over 33,000 respondents.

My first reaction to the initial graphs? The web is run by young (almost 70% were under 32), white (84%) males (83%)! There are more people developing websites who are under 21 (nearly 7%), than those over 51 (combined total of 4%).

As a female ‘of a certain age’, I now realise I am *definitely* in the minority. Not that doing web stuff is my life’s work, but a reasonable proportion is involved in websites, web applications etc.

I’ll keep reading…

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Typo… set in steel!

October 15, 2007

Just posted on one of my tech writing lists today: http://tinyurl.com/2efb43 (photo of typo on a drain hole cover; suitable for work)

ROFL!

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Update on the Aeron chairs

October 15, 2007

Ten days ago I reported that my Aeron chairs had arrived. Ten days on and all I can say is that they are GREAT!

While they seem to be really expensive, I figured that I’d already spent almost every working day since 1992 sitting in front of a computer, and was likely to continue to do so for many more years yet. And all that time I’ve sat in cheap, crappy chairs that did nothing for my back or posture. If I think how many cheap office chairs I’ve purchased for myself in the past 15 years (plus all the cheap ones provided at my various workplaces), I reckon I’d have paid for an Aeron and a half by now! Aerons have a 12 year warranty. If you amortise the cost over 12 years, they’re not so expensive after all. And if you also save on chiropractor or masseur bills, the cost is even less. It sounds like I’m justifying the cost – I guess I am! But one chair for 12+ years, compared to three or four chairs over that time plus chiropractor bills and the Aeron doesn’t look expensive at all!

I’m not saying that these Aeron chairs will suit everybody, or cure any back ailments, but in my opinion they are WAY better than any other work chair I have sat in. And my husband agrees – he loves his Aeron too!

BTW, in a shameless plug, you can now purchase your very own Aeron through my Amazon store!

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Very cool business card designs

October 14, 2007

Found this while catching up on some RSS feed reading today: http://creativebits.org/cool_business_card_designs. It’s pictures of some really creative and very cool business cards. I’m not sure how practical some of them are, but most of them are very clever.

My favourites? The dental ones, the cat tail, ‘blind date’ theme, the x-ray, the acupuncturist, and the divorce lawyers and post-marriage counselling ones.

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Search MYOB Help files

October 11, 2007

UPDATE: The information below only applies to versions of MYOB prior to v17. I received v17 the other day, installed it today, went to make these modifications only to find that MYOB v17 now uses the excellent Zoom Search (I installed Zoom for a previous client’s intranet – it works really well and I can highly recommend it). The new MYOB search now allows you to specify the number of results per page.

Update December 2008: Unfortunately, the number of results you set for one search does not hold for a subsequent search — it defaults back to 10. It’s easy enough to change, but slightly annoying. Another thing about the MYOB search is that it doesn’t recognise a phrase surrounded by double-quotes. So if you search for card file or “card file” you get the same results. AND and OR are not supported either — both are treated as ‘stop’ words instead of Boolean operators. Speaking of ‘stop’ words, note is also a ‘stop’ word! I can understand why as there are plenty of notes labelled ‘Note” in this MYOB Help, but when you are legitimately trying to search for information about creating a “credit note”, you get hundreds of results as MYOB ignores the ‘note’ part altogether and just gives you results with the word ‘credit’ in them. In accounting software, you’re expect ‘credit’ to get lots of results…

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Another thing I don’t like about the MYOB Help is that only 10 items per page get displayed when you do a search. This means a lot of clicking if the results are well over 100, for example.

So I’ve fixed that too! Here’s how:

  1. Go to where your MYOB program files are stored (e.g. C:\MYOB16; NOTE: the information below is not applicable to MYOB 17 or later).
  2. Open the Help folder.
  3. Find the searchtopframe.html file and open it in a text editor. (NOTE: I use EditPlus but any text editor will do; I just prefer text editors with colour coding as the syntax is easier to read.)
  4. Near the very top of this long file, find the line that starts var displaymatches = 10; (it’s around about line 18).
  5. Change the value from 10 to whatever you like – 25, 50, 100, or however many results you’d like to see on a single page of search results.
  6. Save your changes.
  7. Refresh your MYOB Help window.
  8. Do a search for something with a lot of results, such as balance. You should now see the number of results you asked to display on a single page, with appropriately labelled Next and Previous buttons.

Woohoo! I’m on a roll!

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MYOB Help files

October 11, 2007

Update December 2008: This is all fixed in MYOB Accounting Plus v18! The Help opens in a new tab in your default browser window and doesn’t resize anything.

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I’ve been using MYOB for my business and personal accounts for some years now. And it does what it’s meant to do, though there are times the user interface is frustrating. Anyhow, as with most software, you eventually learn to live with it and work around it.

Some versions ago they made all their Help browser-based. Which is a good thing (even though it takes up most of the installation time of upgrades!).

What’s NOT a good thing is how these MYOB Help files resize your default browser window on opening. To hell with whatever your browser has open right now, or how you’ve resized your window to fit how YOU work – no, MYOB ‘knows better’ and resizes your browser for you… to a ridiculously small size!! (350 px wide, 600 px high for those of you who know what these dimensions mean; and 350 px wide and 500 px high for the Search window—which opens in a new browser window too, by the way)

I put in a complaint to MYOB’s support team about this a couple of years ago in January 2006 and suggested that users get the option to set their own browser window size, or, even better, for MYOB to open in the browser window size you currently have set (<sarcasm>now, that’d be novel!</sarcasm>). I got the most ridiculous answer (reproduced here with typos and all):

Although the code supplied would generate a new browser if you where using it in the HTML code of a website, when asking a program to open a website the program has no HTML code and simply asks Windows to open a web browser.

It is infact windows that is fiinding an open browser and using this.

All programs when opening a web page will simply ask Windows to load the webpage and Windows finds an already open page.

For example i selected Help and then Online help in Microsoft Word and it used my Browser that was already open.

However that beinig said we only support the operation of MYOB not its interaction with other programs and this information may need to be checked with an IT Professional.

Even after trying to figure out what it meant (!) it still didn’t answer the question or address the problem.

So today I opened MYOB Help looking for how to do something, and the browser resize p***ed me off that much I decided to find the cause and fix it myself if it was something I could do.

A little bit of digging into the Help file code and I found the culprit – and fixed this window resizing once and for all (until the next upgrade anyway, when I’ll have to spend one minute changing these settings again).

For those who want to do this themselves, here’s how:

  1. Go to where your MYOB program files are stored (e.g. C:\MYOB16).
  2. Open the Help folder.
  3. Find the webby4menu.js file and open it in a text editor. (NOTE: I use EditPlus but any text editor will do; I just prefer text editors with colour coding as the syntax is easier to read.)
  4. Find the text that starts with self.name in the Exposed Menu Events section. NOTE: Make sure you’re at the real code, not the commented out ‘self.name’ bit above it. For those unfamiliar with JavaScript, any line starting with // is a ‘commented out’ line – ignore those lines.
  5. Change the values in self.resizeTo(350,600);self.moveTo(450,25) to something more reasonable, like self.resizeTo(950,900);self.moveTo(250,25). The first set of values specify the browser width and height; the second set the position of the browser window from the top right (?) edge of the screen – these aren’t as annoying so you can leave them if you want.
  6. Go down a couple of lines to the search window specifications, and change the height and width (500 and 350 respectively) to something like 900 and 750.
  7. Save your changes.
  8. Refresh your MYOB Help window (or open MYOB Help if it’s not already open) and you should see the contents in a decent-sized window. Yay!
  9. Adjust the height and width settings to suit, if the ones I’ve documented here aren’t quite what you want.

Hopefully this will help someone else who is as equally annoyed with this ‘feature’ of the MYOB Help. Let me know how you go!