Powerbook in SFO
February 24, 2020

Jira - Show Recent Comment issues

Sometimes you may want to track comments you made in Jira Issues. This might be needed for a variety of reasons:

  • Track issues that you worked on to record testing hours.
  • Hold Engineering accountable for responding to issues you listed.
  • Track team members comments on projects

Currently there's no "easy" JQL query to search for specific information related to the comment field. The only way to search Jira for comments is to use the Dashboard Activity Filter search tool.

Tip: You can set up multiple gadgets on a Dashboard to perform different searches.

Jira Activity Stream
Options with the Activity Filter in Jira

Setting up the Tracking Comments on Specific Projects

Instructions on setting up the dashboard to view recent commented issues.

  1. Go to the Dashboard, and create a new personal Dashboard
  2. Click "Add a New Gadget"
  3. Search for "Activity Stream" - You'll need to click "Load all gadgets" to see it.
  4. Click "Add gadget" to the right, then click Close.
  5. Click "Add a filter" define the project.
  6. Click the '+' and then use the selector to use "Username"
  7. Enter in a login, such as yours.
  8. Then click the '+' and then use the selector to select "Activity"
  9. Enter in Comment in the text box.
  10. Set "limit to 99 items"
  11. Click the Save Button.

Assuming everything is right, You should now have a Dashboard view of your activity stream.

February 23, 2020

How to Improve the Visual Aspect of Your Branding Strategy

When it comes to building a brand, a large proportion of the strategy lies in creating great visual characteristics that people can easily remember. Your branding strategy is one of the things that can launch your brand high in the real world, and you cannot build a successful company without a good brand awareness strategy.

When it comes to the visual characteristics of your brand, things get a bit complicated just because sometimes people are confused about what is a good idea. Since your visuals like logo, color, slogan and etc. are the first thing that people interact with, you need to make them so they will enhance the ‘wow’ factor when someone sees it.

In this article, we will go through some of the ways you can improve the visual aspect of your branding strategy.

Visual Aspect of Your Branding Strategy Logo

Consistency

Consistency is very important when it comes to the visuals of your brand. The biggest mistake from new company owners is that they spend too much time building their brand visuals like a logo or slogan, and then they remain inactive which means there is nowhere to show those visuals.

You must be active with your visuals and present them in a good way so people can interact with your brand. No matter how good are your brand visuals, if people can’t see them, it will be all for nothing. So make sure you establish a good network of promoting your company and always stay consistent when it comes to sharing brand awareness posts.

The job is not finished by designing your logo

People spend so much time and money on designing the perfect logo and often stop with the branding visuals. It is important to note that your job is not done by creating a logo. You need to incorporate that brand identity in practice. For example, you can move on to employee uniforms, store design, social media post design, and etc. Remember, building a brand is just like telling a story. The more visuals you incorporate about your brand, the better understanding people will have about your company.

Understand your target market

Before you start creating any kind of visuals for your brand, it is very important that you understand your target market. In other words, you need to know to whom you are speaking with your brand and what are their characteristics, desires, and requirements.

If you miss your target audience, it may result in catastrophic for your brand. Once you know your target market, you need to create visuals that will be appealing to them and still illustrate what your company is about. This will massively increase the chance that customers will choose your brand over your competitors.

Don’t focus only on social media

Yes, social media is probably the best way to build your global branding strategy. However, as we mentioned before, you need to tell a story about your company, and social media has its limits. You need to focus on all visual aspects of your brand, from in-store promotions to outdoor advertising or email marketing.

Evoke emotions

Nowadays, people choose their brands over what they feel about them, and the visual aspect is essential for evoking emotions. The best way to create a popular brand is by establishing connections with customers. All big brands use this kind of strategy for provoking a strong emotional reaction. Remember, visuals are a much better representation of your company than words, and you can increase customer willingness to make a purchase.

These are some of the tips for improving the visual characteristics of your brand. It is a long-term process that needs to be done just right in order to have a positive result. Following these tips will launch your brand as fast as a horse launching on the Kentucky Derby. The key is to go for a business that you feel passionate about. That way you will improve your storytelling, and you will know what your customers expect from you.

February 22, 2020

Chmod Calculator tool

Setting UNIX permissions on file and folders are important. If it's not part of your everyday job you're likely to forget the difference between chmod 777 and chmod 755.

Thankfully the Chmod Calculator tool is available. The site provides an easy way to properly write the syntax of the permission that you want to set.

Website Description

Chmod calculator allows you to quickly generate permissions in numerical and symbolic formats. All extra options are included (recursive, sticky, etc). You’ll be ready to copy paste your chmod command into your terminal in seconds.

C Hmod Calculator
https://chmodcommand.com/

February 21, 2020

DropZone 4

Three years ago I wrote a short blog post about a cool utility that I found called DropZone. It menu utility that makes it easy to perform some operations on the Mac.

On January 29th, DropZone 4 was officially released. According to the Developer's Blog post, the biggest change is that DropZone is now a subscription-based application. To use the App premium features it will now cost $1.99 a month or $24 a year.

Dropzone34
DropZone 4 vs DropZone 4

5 Things I Have Learned about DropZone

  •   I use the application to transfer images to this Blog. It's very easy to simple drag an image up to the menu bar and drop it to the right location on my server via SFTP.
  •   As much of the application is useful to everyday tasks, I don't think I'll upgrade to version 4. There's nothing special that prompt me to upgrade at this time. I am not happy about the subscription service.
  •   At somepoint, I'll have to upgrade to use the latest features. I did see that SetApp service has DropZone 4. It costs $8.99 per month (annual). This has support for more applications. This might be a better way to go.
  •   The Applications that I have in DropZone are handy to have when I need them. They are miscellaneous apps that don't merit always being in the system dock, but having them in DropZone makes it easy to access.
  •   I started writing an Anchor Tag action. DropZone scripts are written in Python - which isn't a programing language that I am familiar with. DropZone provides a reference teaching at CodeCademy where you can learn more. I just haven't had much time to work on the script.

Error in DropZone 3

If your running DropZone 3 and running into the following error, let me know. There'a an easy fix to get this working again.

/System/Library/Frameworks/Ruby.framework/Versions/2.6/usr/lib/ruby/2.6.0/rubygems/core_ext/kernel_require.rb:54:in `require': cannot load such file -- net/scp (LoadError)

Leave a comment below or send me an email: Webmaster@cryan.com. I'll help you out.

New Videos Coming!

I have gotten several requests to add video examples to the Macintosh Posts. Starting next week, I'll add a 5-minute YouTube clip for the Macintosh Posts.

Thanks for the feedback!

February 20, 2020

Early Signs of Spring

Boston has had a mild winter this year. While, February 5th is the official the middle of Winter. Many Bostonians feel that its usually not until the end of February when you get a sense of the kind of winter it will be.

Yesterday I saw an early sign of Spring in Boston's Back Bay:

Back Bay02192020
Yes, those are early Spring flowers popping out of the ground.

This was taken on St. Botolph Street, which is located next to Coply Place mall.

How Much snow accumulate in Boston?

According to Current Results Boston tends to get very little snow in March and April.

Fun Facts About Snow and Boston

  Fun Fact: in the 123 year history of the Boston Marathon there has never ever been a cancelation because of the amount of snow that was on the ground.

 Fun Fact: According to the Farmers' Almanac's Extended Forecast 2020 the Northeast is expected to more than the average amount of snow fall for the remainer of the season.

 Fun Fact: The most snow that has fallen in Boston was during the 2014-2015 Winter season when 108.6-inches of snow fell. It was also one of the most challenging times for the MBTA Commuter rail as there were numerous train delays and cancelations.

 Fun Fact: One of the worst days was February 17th, 2015, where trains were experiecing more than 60-minute delays.

February 19, 2020

Master Pages

Swift Publisher has the ability to use Master Pages - the ability to create similar functionality throughout the document.

For example, if you want the company logo to appear on the same page or have a similar background watermark.

Swift Publisher Master
Showing how to add a Master Page to a Content Page.

Five Things I learned Using Master Pages

  • When you create a new page a Master page isn’t applied right away. You have to assign a Master page to your Content Page.
  • To access master pages you can select "Master Pages" from the view menu. In addition, you can select Master Pages from the Page Panel Window. (Use the Option-Command-P shortcut to toggle the Pages Panel Window.)
  • Each Master page is identified by the letter in the alphabet. Every time you add a page it increments to the next letter in the alphabet. If you delete a master page, the pages after it names will reset to the previous letter in the alphabet. There is no way to change the Master Page name.
  • To apply a Master page design, right-click on any content page in the Page Panel window and select the "Apply Master Page" menu item, then select the Master page you want to apply. (Note: This is where custom page naming would be handy, especially if you have a lot of master pages.)
  • When you apply a Master Page to a page, the name of the applied Master page will appear to the right in the Pages Panel. This makes it easy to identify which Content pages are using which Master pages.
February 18, 2020

Massachusetts State Troopers Monument

The Massachusetts State Police General Headquarters campus (GHQ) is located just off of Route 9 in Framingham. At the Police Headquarters is a small memorial to the Massachusetts State Troopers who have fallen in the line of duty.

State Memorial

Four Things I Learned

  • Memorial was placed in 1960. They have been 21 Massachusetts State Troopers who have died since 1960.
  • I wasn't able to find any information about the memorial or why it was placed at the location. There don't appear to be any special ceremony around the memorial.
  • There are no names around the memorial, the memorial in Boston has the Trooper's names.
  • Sergeant James H. Marshal was the only trooper to die in 1960. Prior to that, it was Patrolman Wallace E. Mathews who died on April 23, 1953.

Memorial Text

Text of Memorial

Here's the text on the memorial:

In memory of those state troopers who have completed their last patrol and have gone before us. May they Rest in Peace in the Company of God.
Donated By
Former Mass. State Troopers
1960

February 17, 2020

QA Time Constraint

There are only so many hours in a test cycle. Any given company there's always more test than there is time to complete them. Obviously every product manager wants their test to be run at every release.

Yes QA Testing time is Finite.

Q A Time Constraint

Five Things I Have Learned about QA Time Constraints

Here are some of the things I have learned over the years that have made managing short test cycles. Not all of these strategies apply to every situation - many of these are from different companies with different test cycles - but they can at least help QA move testing forward.

  • Propoer Planning prevents Poor Performance - QA Project leads should have an understanding of major changes that are being done in the upcoming release to decide what areas the team should focus more on. For example, if many changes were don't to support mobile, then probably less testing should be done with print actions.
  • Acceptance Testing - Have a checklist of key functionality that should be working and tested in every release. These should always be working.
  • Automation Rocks- We all know the value of automation testing - it can certainly help QA test more in a short amount of time. The downside is that QA needs to monitor the results for False Positives and False Negatives. Manual testing may miss some "obvious" bugs because testers are rushing through a test to find obvious bugs. Automation is great because it can run tests a 1,000 times the same way. It's not going to miss something because the tester is rushing through to find the most obvious bugs.
  • Find Bugs Early as Possible - Use Critical Path testing to find bugs early in the test cycle. Work with the Product and Marketing team to identify all the critical paths with various products and services. The earlier you find blocker/critical bugs the better it is for everyone.
  • Check List - Having a physical checklist helps to make sure that the product is well tested. This helps identify when you have to balance testing with offshore teams and make sure that everything has been touched. I have found a checklist is a way to track that testing is being done.
February 16, 2020

Cost of Movies in Theaters

Recently I went to the AMC theater in Framingham to see the newest Stars Wars - about 6 weeks after it was released. I was a bit surprised by how much it cost for two to go to the movies.

This just shows you why fewer people are going to the movie theaters:

Star Wars Ticket

However buying or renting movies can be a cheaper option:

Movie Rental Tickets2020

Obviously you don’t get to see the movie on a large screen, However, it’s a cheap way for a family to see a movie that they don’t have to see in theaters.

Today’s home theaters are much better than those from the 80s and 90s. Movie Graphics and sound are pretty good - still no match for the large theater - but certainly a good reason why people avoid seeing some shows on the big screen.

February 15, 2020

Aspect Ratio Calculator

Aspect Ratio is critical to making sure that your image looks good no matter how it displays. The 16:9 format is the most common format for images on the web.

One way to know that your using the right ratio size is the Aspect Calculator. It's a simple tool that can help make sure that your blog or social media post will look good.

Website Description

This little tool will help you calculate aspect ratios and dimensions for your videos or images. This can also be used to check if you are working at the correct resolution.

Aspect Ratio of 16:9 ("Sixteen-by-Nine" and "Sixteen-to-Nine") which is also known as High Definition (HD) became a leading aspect ratio since the start of the 21st century. It is the international standard format of HDTV, non-HD digital television and analog widescreen television PALplus. Today many digital video cameras have the capability to record in High Definition format, and it is the only widescreen aspect ratio natively supported by the DVD standard.

Aspect Ratio Calculator
https://aspectratiocalculator.com/16-9.html

February 14, 2020

Graphic Converter Collage Tool

Graphic Converter is a popular graphic program. It's been around for a year, and has a very strong user base. The application keeps getting a better and great application for anyone doing graphics - even if you have PhotoShop, Affinity Photo or PhotoScape.

Inside Graphic Converter are some cool graphics utilities - one of them is the ability to create photo collages. It's a neat feature that some regular users may not know exist.

Since I use PhotoScape Collage tool every day, I thought I look into Graphic Converter to see if it's something that I should use instead.

Graphic Converter Collage Blog

Five Things to Know

  • You can find the Collage feature under the File > New > Collage...
  • Three different layout types: Freestyle, Mosaic, and Grid. Use the Shuffle layout to see more layout options.
  • Custom Canvas Size doesn't save previous use - there's no way to save settings. Which is a problem for me since I send out a Collage photo every day using a particular size.
  • There are three different ways to add borders; In the Layout: Space and Margin and in the Effect, there's Frame Width. So if you reduce the Space and Margin and don't see a change, it's probably the frame width.
  • There are 111 Frame Image effects. These are the exact same that's available in the Effect > Frame > Edge and Frame. You apply the effect to all the images in the Collage. It's not possible to select an effect per image in the Collage. To do this you would have to apply it to the image before setting up the collage.

My Take-away

While it was very cool to use Graphic Converter Collage tool, I didn't like how I would have to manually insert the page size every time.

I liked the graphic effects - that's pretty neat. It was neat to play around with the application to see all the capabilities.

So, for me, I'll stick with PhotoScape Collage tool for my "Photo of the Day" Collage work. Maybe if I am doing a special collage for print or for social media, I'll use Graphic Converter.

February 13, 2020

Poems of the Southwest Corridor Path

As you walk from the Back Bay Station to the Copley Mall, you may notice some stone markers with words on them. No this isn't a graveyard, and these aren't a monument to soldiers. These are the poems and stories of Southwest Corridor Path.

Southwest Corridor Poems

Five Things

  • There are 18 poems and stories along with the 4.1 mile-long parks Southwest Corridor Path. The trail begins at the south entrance of the Back Bay station and ends at the Forest Hills T-station.
  • The poems and stores were selected by community groups that selected the best ones for that area. Winners not only got their work engraved in stone but they also were given $1,000.
  • The stones were put up in the early days of October in 1987, (There doesn't appear to be an official ceremony.)
  • Orginally Funded by the Department of Transportation's Urban Mass Transportation Administration ( now called the Federal Transit Administration) as part of the Arts in Transit - The Southwest Corridor. (Comrehensive pubic art program manages by UrbanArts, Inc. for the MBTA.)
  • The poem "If My Boundary Stops Here" was written by Ruth Whitman. She wrote this poem as she imagined the journey of Tamsen Donner (Donner Party) to California in 1846. The Donner party attempted to travel to California but ended up snowed in the for six months in the Sierra Nevada.

If My Boundary Stops Here

Poem By Ruth Whitman

If my boundary stops here
I have daughters to draw new maps on the world.
They will draw the lines of my face.
They will draw with my gestures my voice.
They will speak my words thinking they have invented them.

They will invent them.
They will invent me.
I will be planted again and again.
I will wake in the eyes of their children’s children.
They will speak my words.

Counterpoint by Jane Barnes

This is part of the "Counterpoint" story on several of the stones:

Tom and Kate were walking home and Kate, the more responsible one, was scowling Tom for not having paid their rent on time. They argued walking down First Street going up the stairs to their apartment building and inside while they took off their coats.

"But Karie," he said, "I wanted to make sure it had cleared first."

"But you had four clear business days, Tom count them!"

Kate flung her coat on a hook in the vestibule and went to the piano. She opened the music to Bach's First Interception which she was working on. She began to plan the opening as she said, "And anyway, that'll be the second time we been a few days late. It's embarrassing."

Tom was walking around the living room turning on the lights while she played. "To who?" he said. "The super? The accounts are done by some old guy in a skyscraper. It's not like we rent from a real person."

February 12, 2020

Dual Page Spread

Swift Publisher supports 2-page spread - the ability to see two pages at once. It's handy when you want to make sure that page elements look the same across pages.

Swift Publisher Page Spread

Using Templates Gallery

The Blank Facing Pages is the only template that I found that has a 2-page spread enabled. It's the fourth item that in the Blank Desktop Publishing category.

When you select this template you default to 4-pages with Page 2 and Page 3 facing each other. If you delete page one, the page spread will break.

You can't have a 2-page spread as you can do in Pages or Adobe Indesign.

Using the Blank Document Format

You can bypass the Template Gallery in the Swift Publisher General Preferences. Simply select the "Create blank Document" under the "For New Document" heading.

When you select the blank document, then the customize button becomes enabled. Click on the Customize button and you'll see an option for "Page Spread Mode." When you select the 2-Page spread the Number of Pages will increase to 4.

Now when you create a document, instead of the template gallery, you get the blank page with the page-spread enabled.

From the manual:

In the page spread mode, documents must have even number of pages. The first and last pages have no facing pages. Users cannot add, delete or reorder individual pages, but only page spreads.

Five Things I Learned

  •   You can't have single page It would be useful if you could have a side-by-side layout. Sometimes when I am creating documents, I want to make sure that the backside of a page is aligned with the front side.
  •   You can create custom blank documents that have 2-page spread enabled and save them as tempates - so they are accessable in the template gallery.
  •   If you have the "Create blank document" enabled so that you always create a document using the page size your familiar with if you use the short cut Option - Command N it will open the Template Gallery instead of a new blank document. A handy shortcut to know.
  •   The template "Half-Fold" is useful when you want to create two pages on a standard 8.5x11 document - such as a Church music flyer.
  •   You can not spilt pages of a spread, that is you can't add other pages between them.
February 11, 2020

Golden Triangle

Framingham/Natick Golden Triangle is the largest shopping district in New England. The 3-mile+ area is located between the Natick Mall and Shopper's World.

Golden Triangle2020 Photo
Aerial Photo of the Golden Triangle area - Natick DPW

Five Things to Know

The Golden Triangle was created in 1951 with the opening of Shopper’s World. The Natick Mall opened in 1966.

The Golden Triangle was originally was 3-miles. In 1993, it expanded to include Bjs just north of Shopper's World. In the 2000s it expanded further west to Concord Street, and more north on Speen Street and Old Connecticut Path.

There are eight hotels and two major car dealerships located in the Golden Triangle. TJX and Mathworks headquarters are within the Golden Triangle area.

The Golden Triangle has the fewest number of people within the 1/2 mile radius - yet it has the second-highest median household income. The area has the most employees by area (According to Framingham Study Data)

In 2018 A joint study by Natick and Framingham was done to stop the decline of retail property in the Golden Triangle. The study recommends making the area more open space with a new Greenway to be similar to areas like Assembly Row in Somerville, MA, and Storrs, CT. - Read the Joint Study.

February 10, 2020

Testing Complexity

Sometimes bugs are missed by QA because they are unique. They can be hard to find during normal regression testing.

Here are a couple of examples of bugs making it to Production due to complexity of testing:

France Translation

There was a bug that only occurred for French users of a website that I was testing. The bug occurred because the translated text was too long and as a result, a dialog action button was not visible.

QA missed this in testing because the focus on testing was on English. QA wasn't notified that a particular dialog box was being translated to French - which wasn't an issue at the time since text content wasn't part of QA testing.

JBoss Installation Instructions

At another company that I worked at, I was responsible for software QA while at the same time doing some installs and training for customers. The company developers put together some documentation on how customers can install the product. The problem was that the document only handled a particular set of customers and several customers started complaining about the inaccuracy of the documentation.

QA missed this because the document was working for many customers. There were no major changes in the application that would have resulted in needing to test the installation process with the customer instructions. What happened was the sales team was selling the product to a different set of customers that required QA to check the documentation.

I then walked through the installation with a couple of customers while at the same time updating the document to make sure that it was clear for particular environments and make sure the terminology matched the audience that was doing the install.

Five Things I Learned to Handled Future situations

While the above is very specific examples, there are many more similar bug patterns that I have seen over my many years of QA testing. Here are some things that I have learned:

  •   It doesn't hurt to every once in a while to take a step back and manually go through the sales flow of the application. Are things working as they should be? How does the product look to new customers.
  •   Work with Developers to get some QA tools to help with testing. The French problem was being solved by having a special URL query for QA to force the page to load with a particular translation. This tool makes it easy to test the key languages when major changes happen in the application. Also, it makes it easy for automation to test the button visibility against various languages.
  •   Review the code changes. It doesn't hurt to check out the code review to see what has been changed. Many times I have found that a code change was made without thinking of other consequences - for example, what happens if customers use non triditional UTF-8 characters.
  •   Learn from the Bugs that Excape QA. One of my weekly tasks is to review the causes of customer reported issues and to see how it was missed.
  •   Learn new QA tools. There's always something new to learn in QA. There's always some new Chrome Extension, JQuery tip, database query and security lock down.
February 9, 2020

How to Come Up With Great Ideas for Blog Posts Constantly

This is an issue that almost every blogger struggles with. After a while of writing blog posts, you start to exhaust your topics and cannot come up with something new and creative to keep the spark alive. Coming up with new and trending content is very important if you want to create a successful blog. It is something that will keep your audience engaged at all times, and at the same time, attract new people to visit your website.

Fortunately, there are different ways you can make sure you come up with great ideas for blog posts, and we will cover some of them in this article.

Cool Blog Idea

Create an idea file

Creativity cannot be controlled, and you don't know when a new and interesting idea is going to strike. That is why you need to be prepared to write it down. Since the idea might come and go, it is very important that you write it down and keep it safe for future submission. You can create a document or spreadsheet, where you will write down all of the ideas that pop into your head. However, that file must be accessible at all times (like an app on your phone), since you don't know when the ideas are going to strike.

Ask your audience

In order to receive an honest answer about what kind of topic to write about, you should ask your audience. Creating a positive relationship with your audience is crucial for success, and it will become helpful as they will give you valuable data to optimize your blog.

It is no shame to ask the readers what kind of content they prefer to read and optimize your blog to suit their needs. It is a win-win situation, as you will make your audience happy, and at the same time, they will provide topics for you to write about. Even though it is a simple method, only a few people are actually doing it.

Identify Trends

The hunt for the next big trend never stops when you are running a blog. This means that you are on a constant search for the topic that most people are interested in at the moment. However, identifying the next trend is a bit complicated since you need to establish thorough research. Fortunately, there are few tools that can help you with that.

  • Google Trends - Is the most commonly used tool for searching trending topics over a specific timeframe.
  • AnswerThePublic - is a website where you can enter any term and get a massive list of synonyms and related terms that people search for.
  • BuzzSumo - You can find out ranks for topics and what are people are writing about by entering a keyword.

Watch Your competitors

Obviously, sometimes you need to focus on your competitors in order to get the right idea for writing engaging content. It is not stealing if you are simply looking at what topics they cover and how they perform with the audience. If you decide to steal an idea for a topic, try to infuse it with your own brand flavor and transform it to suit your blog.

Expand your existing content

Sometimes if your existing content works, you just need to dig deeper into the subject. You should search for the best performing content on your blog and write an in-depth analysis of that subject covering other areas.

By covering some of the existing content, the process might lead you to new ideas for a topic that you've never published on your blog.

These are some of the ways you can keep your content fresh at all times. Remember, since this is a creative process, you cannot expect that the ideas will come to you as fast as a running quarterback on the SuperBowl. There is a saying that states: "Foolish bloggers go out in search of ideas, efficient bloggers allow ideas to come to them." So, keep finding new methods to inspire yourself, and you'll be laughing.

February 8, 2020

SVG Calendar Templates

This time of the year people are updating calendars for events and holidays. It's hard to find a decent calendar to use as a template.

Mensch Mesch put together a website that generates a calendar in three formats - Block, Horizontal and Vertical. These are available in Scalable Vector Graphics format, which means these can be created and edited with any text editor, they are scalable and can be printed with high quality at any resolution.

Website Description

With my free SVG Calendar Tool you can create different types of SVG Calendar Templates (Scalable Vector Graphic) for all Affinity products.

SVG Calendar Generator
https://svg-tools.mensch-mesch.com/calendar/

I like the block format as it's a good starting point for recurring event format.

February 7, 2020

BCS 13 Font Collection

FontDoc was updated last October to work with the latest MacOS.

The application is now a 64-bit application that also supports Dark Mode. There are some additional fixes with how fonts were printing out.

Boston Computer Society PD CD

In the 1990s the Boston Computer Society would produce yearly CDs of Public Domain software. This CD would be packed with all the best shareware and freeware applications.

For many people it was the only way to check out the latest and greatest apps for the Macintosh.

The CD was broken down into many categories - Developer, Graphics, Games, Business and Fonts.

BCS 13 Fonts

Fonts

Could Fonts that were on that CD still be able to be used today? Could Fonts that were made for System 8 be useable in MacOS 10.15?

There best way to find out is to open up FontDoc and point it to the Font folder on the BCS Font Disk. (In this case, I used BCS v13 disk)

After a few minutes of waiting, FontDoc was able to successfully preview 313 fonts! Wow!

I am impressed that many fonts were available to me. Many of these are Shareware Fonts, but I don't think the developers still live in the same location - or have the same Compuserve address.

Example of one of the Read-Me file:

This font, Townsend, is based on Tuscan Egyptian, a wood type font collected by Rob Roy Kelly in his book "Wood Type Alphabets" (Dover Pictorial Archive Series,1977). The font dates from the Hamilton Co. in the 1880s. No attempt has been made to remedy small defects in the letters, to preserve the feel of wood type. Punctuation symbols have been improvised since they were missing from the font as collected.

This font is shareware. If used, it must be registered by the payment of $5 to the address below. Registering the font brings a disk containing ten Tuscan wood type fonts, also registered.

This program is copyright © 1992 by Sidney Bowhill, 555 Annursnac Hill Road, Concord MA 01742. It may not be modified or translated into another format without the permission of the copyright owner. It may be freely distributed or published, provided this notice is attached.

Try it YourSelf

If you have an old Font CDs around, use FontDoc to quickly see what fonts are still usable in the latest MacOS.

February 6, 2020

Massachusetts Enters the Union

It was on this date in 1788 that Massachusetts officially ratified the Constitution of the United States and became part of the Union.

Massachusetts Map

Five Fun Facts About Massachusetts Entering the Union

  • The Constitution was ratified in the Old State House. Every year on July 4th, at 10am the Constitution is read from the balcony.
  • The Massachusetts Constitution was adopted in 1780.
  • John Hancock was elected as the first governor on October 25th, 1780 and was the sitting governor when Massachusetts ratified the Constitution.
  • Population in Massachusetts was 378,787 in 1790 (The first census)
  • Boston was the third largest city in America - New York was number one and Philadelphia was number 2. Today Greater Boston is the 21st largest city in America.

Massachusetts Compromise

Today is also when the Bill of Rights became a requirement of the United States Constitution.

Many people may not know that Massachusetts didn't easily adopt the Constitution. Anti-Federalists felt that the Constitution didn't give many individual rights. It took a lot of convincing by notable Federalists John Hancock and Samuel Adams to get the members of the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention to accept the United States Constitution.

The Massachusetts Compromise was to amend the Constitution with the "Bill of Rights." A set of rights that ensured that the Constitution didn't give powers to the elite and remove the individual ideas that so many people fought for.

The compromise help ratify the Constitution on this day in 1788 by a vote of 187 to 168.

Five other States soon passed the Constitution with four of them using the Massachusetts model of recommending amendments along with the ratification.

The Constitution was officially ratified on June 21st, 1788. George Washington inauguration was on April 30, 1789.

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