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Late to Python

 After several years of not programming much of anything, I have chosen to finally learn Python. I tried half-heartedly a few years ago.  I wrongly understood it was like PHP and a natural for HTML.  I read a couple of cheat sheets and tried to make a go of it. Sound torturous?  That is how I had to learned my first programming language, Radio Shack Level II BASIC back in 1979.  I had only a elementary manual on Level I, and then a command reference on Level II.  I head to reason out not only how each command worked, but why you would use it.  I've used that method for most of the languages I have learned, which is why I have always been a hobbyist programmer, and not an especially productive one. I soon learned with Python if I wanted to do websites, I needed to use Djanjo, a web library for Python.  Those who know Python and Djanjo are probably moaning right now.  Those two together are not a good first day in Python, yet that is what I tried to do. This time, I started with a co

The Death of Scripting in Windows for Evernote

With Evernote 10, scripting is no longer available for Evernote, at least in Windows.  The application ENScript is no longer available.   I never used it much, but I enjoyed dinking around with in.  I had a little AutoIt script that could create individual notes for each line of a spreadsheet.  I wrote about it a couple of times, the most recently here . Evernote has been purchased by a new company. Their intent for future Evernote development is unclear. I don't know if scripting will be a part of it. I was reviewing the post mentioned above, and realized the ability to create notes from a spreadsheet could almost be done as well using Visual Basic for Applications in Excel.  A simple VBA app could generate a a text file and save it to your Evernote Upload directory. What wouldn't show up is a title and tags.   Instead of creating an entire script processing utility Evernote could allow simple markup to happen in the note. Something like <title>My Title goes here</ti

Should you build your own PC?

I mentioned in my last update how I’d built my new computer. With the seeming adoration we all have for laptops, we seem to have fallen out of love with desktops. Why did I go with a desktop? And why I built my own and not just buy? Some people work from their couches, beds, on travel etc. and those people need a laptop. Is that you? Or is your laptop setup at your desk and never moves? If that is the case then a desktop might be better. A desktop doesn’t need the many dongles to hook five devices to one USB port many laptops have now. They come with a plethora of USB ports, and can support multiple monitors easily. Desktops often are cheaper that a similar equipped laptop. Makes sense, it more expensive to build smaller components into a tight case for a laptop. And building your own desktop reduces the price even more. And it isn’t as hard as one might think. There is no soldering involved. You not building so much as assembling various components together. You get to pick your own c

Where have I been?

My nine-year-old laptop died and I dithered about how to replace it. Ultimately, I chose to build a desktop. Back in 2014 my adult son and I built a gaming PC for him, so I had some experience. And about the time my laptop died, we needed to upgrade the motherboard, processor, memory, and power supply in his machine. You could say I was in the groove. Most of the hot button items I normally needed a computer, I did reasonably well on my phone. I could pay bills, update spreadsheets, and certainly surf the web (does anyone say “surf the web” anymore?) I had read for years that in many third world nations without a telephone infrastructure, smartphones had been a major change for many communities. Farmers would get current stock prices, people could do banking for often the first time, order goods, and obtain micro loans, all on their phone. As someone who has always used a computer, I wondered how that all worked. Having primarily a phone taught me a lot. Of course, we have multiple

Announcing the return of Family Tech - now a newsletter

Some readers might recall I once wrote a column for a local paper called Family Tech. It was tech information meant for the casual tech user. I discontinued providing it to the paper a few years back.  A few weeks ago I resurrected it as a Substack newsletter. You can receive free weekly content in an email or by visiting on the web at I hope you will visit, and perhaps share it with those who might enjoy and benefit from it.  Members of your extended family perhaps.

Lessons from 18 months of Work from home

I passed 18 months of Covid related work-from-home last week.  I wouldn't be surprised if I hit two years come March. I thought when it began I'd do a lot more blogging. What happened is after eight hours in my home office, I am happy to leave it and not return for the day. There are lessons I have learned in the past 18 months that do make my life more pleasant. My enjoyment of the Twitter account RateMySkypeRoom did make me finally hang up posters and such I'd bought at aviation museums over the years.  While the number of actual camera-on meetings I have is small, it is nice to present the illusion of order and neatness in my chaotic world.  Next up is to hang my my ancient Radio Shack Model 100 in a shadow box. And the old TV guy in me (I majored in Broadcast Journalism but was seduced into the then-new personal PC space soon after graduation), lead me to use a gifted Amazon card to buy a Ring light.  Even before it arrived, I thought that was foolish, I had few video c