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Lance's TextBox September 2008 Entries
Giving Google Reader a 2nd Try…
I have been a long time user of FeedDemon, which I think is an excellent product. Unfortunately I do not feel the same way about NewsGator’s online reader, and its sync with FeedDemon on my desktop leaves much to be desired. In an effort to be able to read my subscriptions from anywhere, I’ve decided to make the switch to Google Reader. I tried GR a long time ago, when it first came out, and I didn’t like the interface, but they have cleaned that up. Thankfully. :) Also, I do plan to keep FeedDemon ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 30, 2008 4:49 PM

Help save Internet radio!
Good news from Pandora yesterday – The Webcaster Settlement Act of 2008 was passed in the House, enabling Internet radio to exist without paying ridiculous per listener fees. Here’s the email from Pandora: Hi, it's Tim from Pandora; Today, thanks to the extraordinary support of many Pandora listeners, we took a giant step forward when the House of Representatives supported Pandora and Internet radio and passed the Webcaster Settlement Act of 2008. Now we need your help so that the Senate will pass ......

Posted On Monday, September 29, 2008 11:12 AM

Deleting emails from PowerShell
The question was posed on the newsgroup: how do I delete emails (over POP or IMAP) on a remote mail server through PowerShell? Here’s an example of one way to do it – through the use of the get-imap, set-imap, and get-pop cmdlets that are included in NetCmdlets. ## deleteemail.ps1: Delete all email from a particular sender ## deletes emails from an IMAP or POP server. ## Returns a collection of objects containing information about deleted emails (from, to, subject) or mailboxes (name, flags) in a ......

Posted On Wednesday, September 24, 2008 3:44 PM

93x faster .NET Image Loading

I was looking around for how to load images faster than the .NET System.Drawing.Image class and found this awesome finding from Omar Shahine.  The .NET 1.1 SP1 update included a new signature for System.Drawing.Image.FromStream that takes a boolean “validateImageData”.  If you set this to true, the loading time is *much* faster.  Does anybody know what validation is actually performed when this parameter is true?

Posted On Friday, September 19, 2008 4:29 PM


 Every once in a while its good for all of us, after a hard work day, to enjoy a tasty cold beverage.  In these times of enjoyment, you should never be caught without the means to open said tasty beverage.  Enter the BrewzKey.  Your key to bottled goodness.

Posted On Friday, September 19, 2008 4:14 PM

PowerScripting Podcast
If you’re into PowerShell at all and you haven’t listened to the PowerScripting Podcast, you should definitely check it out. I know you’ve seen me write about the show before, but I also know that alot of us don’t have time to listen. Try downloading a copy and burning it onto a cd for your drive home, or copy it onto your mp3 player. The show is done by Hal Rottenberg and Jonathan Walz, two great guys who are a big part of the PowerShell community and who work hard putting together a great show. ......

Posted On Friday, September 19, 2008 10:08 AM

An Actual link to AWSLink
In my last post I described AWSLink, my bookmarklet for generating Amazon Associates product links.  It helps if I provide a link to AWSLink, huh?  Here it is!

Posted On Tuesday, September 16, 2008 8:38 AM

Quickly create Amazon Associates links
I don’t know if there is already an easy way to do this that I just don’t know about, or what…but it sure seems like there should be. I always find it a pain in the ass to create Amazon Associates links – I’ve always had to go to their website, click “Build Links”, click “Text Links’, paste in the URL to the product page, etc. Annoying. The URL isn’t that difficult to build, so I just created a little bookmarklet that will do it for me. You can use it with your own Amazon Associates tag if you like. ......

Posted On Monday, September 15, 2008 11:32 AM

Awesome Birthday
I had an awesome 32nd birthday yesterday. I had some family in from out of town and we had a great time. Then I headed to the pool with the gf to enjoy a few tasty beverages and an awesome afternoon in the sun. After that we headed out to a secret dinner destination, which turned out to be the famous Angus Barn restaurant in Raleigh, where I devoured a 24 ounce t-bone and we enjoyed some nice wine. Here’s the awesome camera that Lauren got me. I’d been talking about buying a new, smaller camera that ......

Posted On Monday, September 15, 2008 11:24 AM

PowerShell: ESPN-Download
“Quintas" was another of the winners of the PowerScripting Podcast’s NetCmdlets scripting contest. Quintas submitted an espn-download script, which retrieves podcast feeds from and downloads the mp3 files for later listening. Here is Quintas’ script: # ESPN-Download param($DownloadDir=$(throw "Usage: ESPN-Download.ps1 DownloadDirectory Show LatestorAllDownloaded`nShow... Mike & Mike`n2. PTI`n3. Around The Horn`n`n[L] for latestshow or [ A ] for All shows`n"), [string]$ESPNShow=$(Read-Host ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 4:46 PM

PowerShell NetCmdlets -debug
Its easy to forget about the –debug parameter, but a lot of times it can be very helpful, especially with NetCmdlets where in many cases –debug will output the protocol interface (the “PITrail” as we call it at /n software) of the connection. The PITrail includes a trail of communication between the cmdlet and the remote host it is talking to. Rob emailed me to ask for help diagnosing a 425 error he was getting when using the NetCmdlets get-ftp cmdlet. As I described to Rob, in a nutshell the 425 ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 4:41 PM

PowerShell: tweet-im
Mark Schill was another of the winners of the PowerScripting Podcast’s NetCmdlets scripting contest. Mark submitted a tweet-im script, which sends an instant message about new tweets found in the Twitter RSS feed. They explained on the podcast that Twitter used to have an IM-bot feature which went away, so Mark created this script himself to meet this need. The script simply sits and fetches your Twitter friends timeline feed every x seconds, checks to see if the items it finds are newer than the ......

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2008 10:56 AM

PowerShell: send-gmail
Over at the PowerScripting Podcast, the winners of the NetCmdlets scripting contest were announced. Meanwhile I was having some awesome vacation time in the beautiful Outer Banks of North Carolina. Winners for the /n software Netcmdlets contest are: Steve Hiner - Wrote a wrapper for Send-Email script to send email using Gmail's SMTP server Mark Schill - Sent in two entries, the one we've chosen to highlight is his Twitter IM client bot thingy. It uses Send-IM and Get-Http Quintus - A script to download ......

Posted On Wednesday, September 10, 2008 5:28 PM

No, &Registry.find_name;, we don't install anything else on your machine.
The FAQ at is funny. :) I love it when software companies put on this sort of laid back front. Q: Spyware! You have some sort of spyware that accompanies your install. You're harvesting information about me, aren't you? No, &Registry.find_name;, we don't install anything else on your machine. Technorati Tags: AS2, EDI ......

Posted On Wednesday, September 10, 2008 1:11 PM

Building Enterprise Mashups using RSSBus
Microsoft MVP Richard Seroter started a series of posts on building enterprise mashups using RSSBus. Part 1, and Part 2. A few weeks ago our Executive Director / Chief Architect / Technology Overlord recently asked me to build a real, live enterprise mashup application to demonstrate for our IT leadership group. Our goal was to show that RSSBus could be used to quickly and efficiently aggregate data in compelling new ways. In the next few posts, I’m going to walk through our use case, and how I built ......

Posted On Tuesday, September 9, 2008 10:09 AM

RSS to iCal Converter
Here is an RSS to iCal converter that I published last week. All it does it take your RSS url, and give you back another one that calls RSSBus, and asks RSSBus to retrieve your URL and convert it to iCAL for you! Recently I came across several RSS feeds of schedules. One was a product release schedule, another a football schedule (go pack!). I was slightly annoyed that RSS was chosen for schedules since no feed readers really know how to handle a future pubDate, but I quickly realized it would be ......

Posted On Monday, September 8, 2008 10:32 AM

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