|July 17, 2018|
Date Conditions with Macros
One thing that makes Keyboard Maestro a productive tool is the ability to add conditions to Macros. Keyboard Maestro describes the Conditional If-Then-Else Statement:
The If Then Else action allows you to choose which of two sets of actions should execute. If certain conditions are met then execute one list of actions. If not, execute another. If there are no conditions set then no actions will execute.
Having the If-Then-Else feature, I can display a different text output based on the day of the week that I call the Macro.
Perhaps this situation will be helpful:
When testing tickets I need to add a comment in Atlassian Jira that the issue pass testing. I use Keyboard Maestro as my text template. When testing on Wednesday, I am validating issues that are on the staging server but there's no tag - yet. Only issues tested on Thursday will have a tag, and my comment should reflect that tag.
Using a single Macro with a date condition, I can just type one trigger and the correct text will appear based on the time of day/week that I execute it. This makes it easy to remember one macro for similar actions.
Here's an example of the Macro that I have set up:
The %ICUDateTime%e% outputs the day of the week (1-7). When the day is 5 or greater, than the condition is true and the first statement gets executed. Otherwise show the second statement. Get the full details of all the ICU Date Time functions.
You can see the condition statement is being evaluated in Keyboard Maestro. See the currently false at the top of the If statement. This is helpful to know if your condition is really working.
The Text format in the "Insert Text by typing" field is formatted for Jira.
You can have any type of condition, check for application, mounted volume, clipboard content and so much more!
|July 16, 2018|
PostgreSQL Quick Cheat Sheet
If your use to supporting MySQL and now having to support PostgreSQL it can be tricky to know some of the common admin commands.
Here's a handy chart that I quickly put together of common admin commands that are used between the two databases:
|List databases||Show databases||l|
|Connect to database||use database;||c database|
|Show Database Tables||Show Tables||d|
|Show Tables Columns||Show Columns||d table|
If there are any other commands you want to add, let me know in the comments below.
|July 15, 2018|
Expired Inspection Sticker
Make sure to get your car inspected on time. This is critical in Massachusetts as no only could you be severely fined $100 for a simple mistake. Did you know that you could be charge points for having an expired sticker?
Quotes About Expired Tickets
"If you're caught driving without an inspection sticker, or one that's expired, you will be cited by the police for driving an unsafe vehicle, which could also result in insurance surcharges and you could be forced to pay a fine." - Massachusetts DMV
"In Massachusetts, a ticket for an expired vehicle inspection sticker is the equivalent, in auto insurance citation points, of a moving violation. According to the MA Department of Insurance, surcharge points are incurred if you: cause an at-fault accident. are convicted of or pay a fine for a traffic law violation" - Massachusetts Auto Insurance
Massachusetts Rules on Inspection Stickers
This is the official rule if you get caught with an expired inspection sticker:
Any person who operates and any person who owns or permits to be operated a motor vehicle or trailer that fails to meet the safety standards established by the registrar pursuant to section 7A shall be punished by a fine of $25. Any person who owns and fails to have inspected a motor vehicle owned by him, as required pursuant to section 7A or 7V of this chapter or sections 142J and 142M of chapter 111 or any person who operates or permits a motor vehicle owned by him to be operated without a certificate of inspection or a certificate of rejection displayed in accordance with the provisions of said section 7A or 7V or said sections 142J or 142M and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder shall be punished by a fine of $50. Any motor vehicle which is required to be inspected pursuant to the provisions of said section 7A and said section 142J or 142M and fails to meet the requirements of such inspection and has not been issued a certificate of waiver under the provisions of clause (b) of the first paragraph of said section 7V or said section 142M shall be subject to suspension or revocation of the certificate of registration as may be prescribed by the registrar under section 22.
New Bill Being Proposed
There is currently a bill, proposed by Bradley H. Jones, Jr., to remove an expired inspection sticker as a surchargeable incident.
SECTION 1. Section 113B of chapter 175 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting, in line 227, after the word "incident" the following sentence:-
Driving a motor vehicle which has an expired inspection sticker shall not be considered a surchargeable incident.
Back in 1997, the Massachusetts DMV used to mail out reminder cards to let people know about the inspection sticker was about to expire. This ended during the budget cuts of the 2000s.
Don't take chances, check your car inspection sticker, don't let it lapse.
|July 14, 2018|
The Internet is not all work and no play. There are lots of fun sites out there that can help make you think and still be fun.
This Week's Case in Point is: GeoGuessr.com a website that tests your geographic skills using pictures on Google Maps.
Embark on a journey that takes you all over the world. From the most desolate roads in Australia to the busy, bustling streets of New York City.
GeoGuessr is a geography game which takes you on a journey around the world and challenges your ability to recognize your surroundings.
Take the Hard map challenge against a co-worker or try it yourself and see how well you know geography and terrain.
|July 13, 2018|
Path Finder 8
On May 20, 2018, Cocoatech officially announced Path Finder 8. It's the first major update in 2 year!
What Makes Path Finder 8 Worth Looking at?
In Path Finder 8, it's all about the Modules. Path Finder was written so that you can customize the Browser window how you want. You can now place various modules in positions that work best for you.
Modules functionality includes: ASL, Attributes, Cover Flow, Drop Stack, Git, Hex, Image Browser, Info, Open With, Permissions, Preview, Processes, Recent Documents, Recent Folders, Selection Path, Sidebar, Size Subversion, Tags and Rating, Terminal and Trash.
Simply drag and drop the modules where you would like to see it. It's great when you're doing certain tasks, such as disk cleaning where the Info Module may come in handy or when your working on a software project and Git and Subversion would be handy.
According to the Path Finder Blog, Modules is just one step of many exciting changes coming to Path Finder. Expect to see more features and enhancements.
What I Like About Path Finder
Menu Bar Functionality
Path Finder has an icon in the menu bar, which gives you quick access to various computer points - such as Active Applications, Open a new Terminal Window and a Quick way to launch any application via the Command - F8.
If you don't like using the Command-Space functionality, using Path Finder menu bar is yet another way to open up applications. The launch application functionality gives you a Browse and Search Application window to make open up your favorite App. This is useful when you may know about the app by its icon but not necessarily by the name.
Ability to Add/View additional Columns to the Grid
You can add an 'Info' column to the browser grid which will give you some information about each object, for images you get the image dimensions. Which is extremely helpful when you're browsing around looking for a particular image. Videos objects will show the length.
Once you find the right image, You can right click, and select the 'Image Size' and now you have the image dimensions in your clipboard.
Personalize it to work for You
There's a lot more configuration in the Path Finder Browser than what's in the Finder. Path Finder gives you the ability to customize the Mac experience to your needs.
Basically if you want more power and configuration with the Mac OS Finder, Path Finder is certainly the way to go.
Remember Path Finder has been around since Mac OSX first came out. So they know a thing or two about what people need in a good file management application.
|July 12, 2018|
Christian Science Center Plaza Update
In case you haven't noticed, the Christian Science Center Plaza has been going through a major update. In 2018, most of the plaza has been closed. This is to help modernize the plaza and make it more welcome for people to come and visit.
Full details on the construction can be found on the Christian Science Center Plaza Construction Page.
For the most part, this view will not change at the competion of the construction.
Construction End Date
According to the Project team the project is on schedule and should be completed by this Fall.
What's Changing on the Plaza
The most noticeable change is to the reflection pool:
- It's now going to be shallower so that it uses less water.
- The pool will look better when there is no water in it. There are dark stones on the bottom of the pool. (Currently it looks like they are solar panels - they are not.)
- It's going to be slightly shorter to provide easier access to the plaza from Huntington Ave.
Mother Church is closed and worshipers are asked to attend services in The Mother Church Extension - which is the building connected to the Mother Church.
There is construction going on by the Massachusetts Ave side of the plaza to increase the green space in front of the church.
The popular Children's Fountain is still open and running during the final phases of the construction. There are no major changes being done in this part of the plaza
When completed, the plaza will be more picturesque any time of the year. For example: taking pictures of the Christian Science Center Plaza from the Prudential Skywalk Observatory will look much better.
|July 11, 2018|
Joan Buckminster Marcy
Walking through the Framingham's Church Hill Cemetery, you may encounter many strange old gravestones. However, one stands out a bit more than others - its the gravestone of Joan Buckminster Marcy
Who was Joan Buckminster Marcy?
There isn't a whole lot of information on her. I did find her obituary in the Buffalo NY Courier Express (Page 7):
Miss Joan Marcy Dies in Vermont
(August 19, 1942) Joan Buckminster Marcy, fourteen, younger daughter of William L. Marcy, Jr. and Mrs. Heinrich F. F. H. Hause of 62 East 78th Street, New York City, died yesterday morning at Guilford, VT., after an Illness of eight months.
Born July 14, 1928, Miss Marcy had made her home with her mother in New York since 1935. She attended school in Darien, Conn.
Funeral services will be held tomorrow at Guilford.
Besides her parents, Miss Marcy is survived by a sister, Constance of New York City.
In addition, someone posted some information in a feedback section on the ThisIsFramingham website, I am not sure it's talking about same person:
Comment by Sarah - October 14, 2008
Someone was interested in Joan Buckminster Marcy, buried in the cemetery at Framingham. She was my great aunt and a great beauty if I do say so myself. I inherited her portrait, done in oil. It's beautiful and hangs in my sister's house in Washington State.
She was married to a Spanish diplomat.
She died in Egypt after an ectopic pregnancy; medical technology was not what it is today, obviously. She was still in her twenties when she died.
I never knew her, but I knew my grandmother, her sister, very well indeed.
Couple of Notes about the above comment:
- Joan was fourteen when she died, not 20.
- She didn't die in Egypt but in Guilford, VT.
Why a Turtle Gravestone?
The whimsical bronze turtle does stand out from all the other classic gravestones.
One possible reason for the turtle is its Indian meaning - The turtle symbol signifies good health and long life. The turtle has great longevity living up to 150 years. (Could also be that Joan had a special thing for turtles)
Mystery in the Graveyard?
I am not sure if Sarah comment is correct.
If you have any additional information about Joan Buckminster Marcy, please put it in the comments below. Also, I couldn't find any information on why she was buried in Framingham. Se spent her whole life in Connecticut and New York. Why was she buried in Framingham?
|July 10, 2018|
Execute Shell Script
One of the nice things about https://www.keyboardmaestro.com/main/ is the ability to run Shell Scripts as part of a Macro action. This is useful when you want to apply a clipboard text to a shell script or just to execute a shell command.
Recently I wanted to set up a Status Menu action to simply run a shell script. I am doing some automation work and frequently need to test code changes. it's just easier to have a status menu than to open up a terminal and execute the run command.
To execute commands, simply use the Bash Shell:.
Some Notes about Shell Execution
- You can ignore the output results. (nice feature if you don't need to see the debug information)
- I have an ampersand after the run_automation.sh so the command would run in the background. There is the ability to run the command asynchronously in Keyboard Maestro.
- In my execution script, the directory where it's being executed from makes a difference, so I needed to change directory before running the command. I didn't use the 'Script File' method.
- To run PHP commands you would type in: #!/usr/bin/php
Oh, more thing, if I want to run the command frequently, I can instantly change the macro to be included in the Global Macro Palette. It's a simple switch of the trigger type.
There's a lot of options available, including the ability to pass variables to the shell command. The Keyboard Maestro help section has a lot of detailed information on setting those up.
|July 9, 2018|
July QA Graphics
Every once in a while I update the QA Graphic page with new content. This week I found a few images in my collection that I haven't posted yet.
I'll continue to look through my collection and upload images and add it to the collection.
If you have any graphics that you like to see, put it in the comment below or hit me up on Twitter.
|July 8, 2018|
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser in a Pool Skimmer
Using Mr. Clean Magic Eraser in the pool skimmer. seems to a great idea. We hear about someone else doing it as a way to clean up a cloudy pool. We thought why not give it a try to see what happens.
Things We Learned Using Mr Clean in the Skimmer
- There is little risk to using this - since we had a few spare Mr. Clean Sponges available. We simply put one in the skimmer, making sure that it was nice and tight.
- After a couple of hours of running the filter, we checked Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and it appeared to be helping out. As you can see from the above picture, the Eraser collected some micro dirt.
- Only the top part of the Magic Eraser was dirty, the bottom was still white. Which means that the sponge was helping clean up the pool.
- The pool did look better, but I am not sure if it's directly related to the Magic Eraser but it didn't hurt the cleaning process, and the pump water level didn't go down at all.
- It seems that the Magic Eraser complements the cleaning process and does clean up the pool.
Certainly use the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser if you have one available. It seems to add a bit of assistance of getting some of the micro dirt that a sand filter may not able to clean up.
Who knows, maybe you'll find the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser at your local pool supply store soon.
|July 7, 2018|
Avatar Cartoon Creator
Having a cartoon image of yourself is a creative way to use as the profile photo on Facebook, Twitter or Slack. Cartoonify.de makes it easy to create a professional looking cartoon-like image of yourself.
With our service you can quickly create a Cartoon of Yourself directly online without any software installs and for free! With Cartoonify you can Cartoonize Yourself. We have more than 300 graphics parts so your avatar will be as special as you are. This is one of the easiest and fastest way to convert your Photo to a Cartoon with our app. You only have to choose between its face, eyes, hair, clothes and even a background. Try our online avatar maker now!
As a result you can download your Cartoon Picture as SVG (vector) or as PNG file which is converted from vector graphic parts and also uploads to Gravatar. Additionally, you can create your avatar as gravatars. This is perfect for sharing with all social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and more! Yes! I want to create my cartoon mini-me. Try our Anime Character Creator Website now and create your own self-portrait.
Watch the video on the "How to Cartoon Yourself?" page to learn how to best use the Avatar generator.
A few sample Avatar using the 'random' button.
|July 6, 2018|
CofeShow Video Slideshow Maker
Video Slideshow Maker CofeShow is the quickest way to create professionally looking slideshows. Simply select the theme, add the photos, add music, and then build the slideshow. The final video can be uploaded to YouTube or added as a clip to iMovie or Filmora.
18 Designs Available
Current available designs: Mint, Bokeh, Summer Holiday, VintageSparks, Chalkboard, Watercolor, Roller, Blurry, Pan and Zoom, Baby, Corporate, Vanilla, Blue Denim, Black, Brown Wood, Birthday Party and Magic Tree.
You can preview the designs on cofeshow's website.
Five Things I Learned Using CofeShow
- You can add Text before each photo. (Useful to describe a scene or event)
- You don't have the ability to customize the length of the slideshow.
- Each photo is shown for 3.5 or 4 seconds depending on the theme selected
- You can add music to the slideshow, however the show will not play to the length of the clip.
- You have an option between 1280x720 (HD) or 1920x1080 (Full HD)
- Each theme has to be downloaded the first time you use it.
- After the video is created, you need to manually upload it to your favorite video network (YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, etc..)
This is a quick video that I put together using Video Slideshow Maker CofeShow. I haven't purchased the license - yet. But I plan too in the near future.
Apple Photos Slideshow
There is a slideshow functionality in Apple Photo. However, there are only seven designs to pick from. The seven slideShow designs in Photos are Ken Burns, Origami, Reflections, Sliding Panels, Vintage Prints, Classic and Magazine.
Vintage Prints is the only design that I really like in Apple Photos. I haven't been able to find anyone else have a similar style.
|July 5, 2018|
First Independence Day Toast
The first Independence Day in Boston was a very special event. People were celebrating and fireworks going off all over the city. The guns were going off at Castle Island and at Fort Hill to celebrate the occasion.
At a Coffee Shop in Boston, perhaps the Green Dragon Tavern, thirteen people from various states gathered and each one shouted out a toast. Each person would have a drink and one by one they gave a special toast.
Toast to Independence Day
Here are the thirteen toast given at the very first Independence Day in Boston:
- The noble and honorable Representative of the United States in Congress, who voted the same free and independent. (Cheers!)
- May the Lord God protect the United States, now and henceforth, forevermore. (Cheers!)
- The United States of America and may the good people of the same support their independency. (Cheers!)
- The President of the Grand Continental Congress and the present members of the same (Cheers!)
- Our Noble and worthy General Washington and the Army (Cheers!)
- Success to the American Navy (Cheers!)
- May the Fourteenth string be added to the harp (Cheers!)
- May the Army of America vanquish the enemies of American independence. (Cheers!)
- Many none but men of honor and virtue test American freedom (Cheers!)
- Liberty to those who have the virtue to defend it. (Cheers!)
- May the union of American states be as lasting as the pillars of human nature (Cheers!)
- Major General Charles Lee and all our friends in captivity (Cheers!)
- The immortal memory of General Warren all al the rest of our brave officers who have been slain since the commencement of this unnatural war. (Cheers!) (Cheers!)<
After the thirteen general toast was given, a special toast was given to each of the thirteen states.
Source: Boston Globe and various history books.
|July 4, 2018|
Happy Independence Day
Happy Independence Day America!
In New England, some people are heading to the beaches to enjoy the warm weather, others are heading around the Charles River to mark their spot for the Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular.
This is a nice poem/article that was written 42 years ago to celebrate the bicentennial celebration of the country.
I am The Nation
OTTO Whittaker "I Am the Nation," as published on the front cover of the Norfolk and Western Railway Company Magazine on January 15, 1976.
I was born on July 4, 1776, and the Declaration of Independence is my birth certificate. The bloodlines of the world run in my veins, because I offered freedom to the oppressed. Too many things, and many people. I am the nation.
I am 213 million living souls-and the ghost of millions who have lived and died for me.
I am Nathan Hale and Paul Revere. I stood at Lexington and fired the shot heard around the world. I am Washington, Jefferson and Patrick Henry I am John Paul Jones, the Green Mountain Boys and Davy Crockett. I am Lee and Grant and Abe Lincoln.
I remember the Alamo, the Maine and Pearl Harbor. When freedom called I answered and stayed until it was over, over there. I left my heroic dead in Flanders Fields, on the rock of Corregidor, on the bleak slopes of Korea, in the steaming jungle of Vietnam, on the sands of Iraq and the hills of Afghanistan.
I am the Brooklyn Bridge, the wheat lands of Kansas and the granite hills of Vermont. I am the coalfields of the Virginias and Pennsylvania, the fertile lands of the West, the Golden Gate and the Grand Canyon. I am Independence Hall, the Monitor and the Merrimack.
I am big. I sprawl from the Atlantic to the Pacific - my arms reach out to embrace Alaska and Hawaii - 3 million square miles throbbing with industry. I am more than 5 million farms. I am forest, field, mountain, and desert. I am quiet villages-and cities that never sleep.
You can look at me and see Ben Franklin walking down the streets of Philadelphia with his bread loaf under his arm. You can see Betsy Ross with her needle. You can see the lights of Christmas, and hear the strains of "Auld Lang Syne" as the calendar turns.
I am Babe Ruth and the World Series. I am 110,000 schools and colleges, and 330,000 churches where my people worship God as they think best. I am a ballot dropped in a box, the roar of a crowd in a stadium and the voice of a choir in a cathedral. I am an editorial in a newspaper and a letter to a Congressman.
I am Eli Whitney and Stephen Foster. I am Tom Edison, Albert Einstein, and Billy Graham. I am Horace Greeley, Will Rogers, and the Wright brothers. I am George Washington Carver, Jonas Salk, and Martin Luther King.
I am Longfellow, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Walt Whitman and Thomas Paine.
Yes, I am the nation, and these are the things that I am. I was conceived in freedom and, God willing, in freedom, I will spend the rest of my days. May I possess always the integrity, the courage, and the strength to keep myself unshackled, to remain a citadel of freedom and a beacon of hope to the world.
This is my wish, my goal, my prayer in this year of 1976-two hundred years after I was born.
|July 3, 2018|
Keyboard Maestro’s Application Switcher is a very powerful way to navigate between active applications. You can quickly go from one application to the next.
A Step Above Apple’s Switcher
What’s separates Keyboard Maestro’s Switcher than Apple:
- You can have define applications to always appear in the Switcher, making it easy to access applications that you can’t justify having in the Dock.
- You can exclude applications from showing in the application switcher - even if they are open. This helps cut the clutter.
- You can open multiple applications. So if your working on a database project, you can open multiple apps at the same time - Such as Terminal and pgAdmin.
- You can have multiple application switchers so that certain apps only show during certain hours during the day.
- Keyboard Maestro application switcher is easier to configure.
Using the Application Switcher, you can simply enable the command and then select the application. But there are a few additional commands available.
When the Application Switcher is in focus, keep the Command key and use the mouse and these keys to perform actions:
|k||(twice) to mark an application to Force Quit|
|s||Make application hidden|
|l||Mark application to launch (You can select more than one!)|
|a||Hide “Always Show” applications|
|j||Show applications that were recently quit|
|i||Get Information on the selected application|
If you accidentally hit the Application Switcher, simply hit the escape key to close it.
Easy Force Quit Feature
I personally like the ‘Force Quit’ feature. It makes it so easy to quit out of an application that is stalled. (Much better than having to remember the keyboard shortcut.
When you see the “beach ball” and it appears the application is stuck, simply activate the application switcher and then kk the application to force quit.
|July 2, 2018|
Jira Short cuts for QA
Atlassian Jira is the most popular tool for teams to manage projects and track issues. Knowing shortcuts to navigate around the application can save you time with everyday tasks.
There are lots of great keyboard shortcuts, these are some of the ones that will improve your productivity .
Essential Keyboard Shortcuts
Here is a cheat sheet of essential shortcuts for Atlassian Jira that I believe are useful for any QA team.
This work any place in Jira:
|c||Create an Issue|
|m||Comment on the current issue|
|l||Edit issue label|
Quickly Navigate the Jira Board
I find using the One/Two combinations really handy when your looking at the Active Sprint and seeing what's in the backlog.
|July 1, 2018|
Yawkey Station Name Change
Earlier this year the Yawkey Way, one of the streets that borders Fenway Park, was renamed back to 'Jersey Street.' John Henry wanted this to be done since the Red Sox was the last Major League team to integrate. Many people place the blame on the slow integration with Tom Yawkey.
The street name officially became Yawkey Way on January 25, 1977. It was reverted back to Jersey Street on May 3, 2018. A duration of 15,074 days Or 41 years, 3 months, 9 days.
MBTA Commuter Rail Station is Next
Did you know that there are plans underway to change the MBTA Commuter rail - 'Yawkey Station.' Representatives Balser of Newton and Byron Rushing of Boston filed a Bill to get the station name changed.
According to various MBTA sources, one name that is not available is 'Fenway Park' - because there is a green line stop called 'Fenway Park' and having two station names can be confusing. People may think it goes to the same stop, as they don't they are far apart from each other.
What do you think the new station name will be?
|June 30, 2018|
Cool Text Generator
If your looking for a quick text to graphic generator than Cool Text Generator is the place to go. You can create some neat styles around your text.
There are 31 different styles to use, 800 different fonts and 213 different color palettes. (Got to love some of the Disney references)
Once you pick the style, you can change the color and font. The site is very simple to use. One disadvantage is that you can't save a favorite design to use later.
Sometimes we just need a decent stylish text in 10 minutes. We don't have Photoshop, we don't have good design in mind. What if there is a web service for us to browse-and-pick a nice effect, then we just customize x2192 download x2192 use it? And yes, maketext.io is born for this purpose.
Maketext.io is the modern cool text generator that empowers SVG filters and 800+ open-font-licensed web fonts. While there are already numerous similar websites around, we handcrafted maketext.io with the following guideline in mind:
- Make It Quick, Make It Simple
- On the Web, on the Fly
- Easily Customizable
- Vector Based with Raster Support
Some Text Design Samples
Here are some basic designs that were created using Cool Text Generator. Keep in mind there's a lot of ways to be creative around your text.
|June 29, 2018|
There are a few Finder 'Go' keyboard shortcuts that everyone should be familiar with. These are the most common places that you will go when using the computer.
The one that I always get confused about is the Download folder. Why didn't Apple keep the same keyboard convention? Afterall Shift-Command-L doesn't do anything.
Mac OS X Shortcuts
If you know of any other cool keyboard shortcut graphics, let me know in the comments below.
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