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Topics - mouser [ switch to compact view ]

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Just thought I'd share this little code snippet for a batch (zipcurdir.bat) file that I use quite frequently.
Requires 7-zip but could be adapted for any other zip tool.
Then just put this little .bat file in any directories where you want to be able to super quickly make a uniquely timestamped zip file of the contents of the directory, and then move the zip file out of the way to the parent directory.
I use this all the time when I'm working on a project and it's not under version control and I want to make sure I have quick backups before something goes wrong.

Add any exclusion patterns you want to the extraoptions line, and change 7-zip location if different; or maybe you want to change the destination folder..

for %%a in ("%cd%") do set "CurDir=%%~na"
set thedir=%CurDir%

set mydate=%date:~12,2%%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%
set HOUR=%TIMEZERO:~0,2%
set MIN=%TIMEZERO:~3,2%
set mytime=%HOUR%%MIN%
set zformat=zip

set extraoptions=-xr!Temp -xr!Junk

set zcmd="c:\program files\7-zip\7z" a -t%zformat% -r %extraoptions%
set fname=%thedir%_%mydate%_%mytime%.%zformat%

echo %zcmd% ..\%fname% .\
%zcmd% ..\%fname% .\

As an example if I put this zipcurdir.bat file in my Documents\Arduino\ folder and run it, I get the file in the parent directory: ""

The only thing neat about this batch file is the autonaming of the created file based on the current directory and the fact that you never have to modify the batch file no matter where you put it.

Living Room / Bought a color laser printer -- it's a game changer
« on: April 24, 2022, 04:01 AM »
I have always done a lot of printing on my (black+white) laser printer.  I love the speed of printing, long lasting ink, easy and fast duplexing, and the quality.  I frequently print papers to read, documentation, board game rules, etc.

And I have always had a color inkjet printer, upgraded through the years, but never a pleasure to use.  Too slow, ink is too EXPENSIVE, and dries out from infrequent use, slow startup times, waste of space.

I would only use the color inkjet on the rare occasions when I needed color -- most of the time if it was a document with just a little color or where I didn't care, I'd print on the laser in black and white.


But I finally bit the bullet and bought a color laser (HP Color LaserJet Pro M255dw for about $350).

It feels like a bresh of fresh air.  It has almost all the advantages of the black and white laser, but I now can print out documents with some color in them, and just have to deal with 1 printer.

Now if you need to print photos, then the color laser is not going to satisfy you; inkjets produce far better nice glossy color photos.

But for everything else it's been a joy and a relief to not have to mess with the inkjet.

I'll also say, I do think the black pure text printing from the color laser is *slightly* worse quality than my previous black+white laser, but especially with my eyes not being what they were, it's barely noticable and an easy trade off for me for the benefits of color printing.  I'm so glad to be done with inkjets.

Living Room / Opinions requested on my new YouTube Video Series
« on: February 14, 2022, 11:30 PM »
I've recorded a 5+ hour (16 part?) video series called "Micro-studio Boardgame Video Production":

First episode:

It covers most of what I've learned in the last year.

It's not live yet, I still have another 10 days or so before I make it live, and I'd love any feedback about things that I should fix before making it live!
Let me know your suggestions.

Other Software / OBS Scripts
« on: January 22, 2022, 02:12 AM »
I've created an open source directory for miscellaneous scripts and tools for OBS (Open Broadcasting Studio):

Browser based animated flip timer (used to show time until some date or a countdown of a specific duration):

Sidebar dock for OBS that acts as a tally indicator of recording/streaming status, using Websockets:

Also includes a youtube chat script that changes a browser source on a scene to show the current chat contents overlaid on a screen

And a fix for an existing lua timer that I no longer use.

ALL of these are just minor tweaks from me of code written by others.

Went looking for a straightforward tool to let me broadcast one of my pc screens to an android tablet during a recording -- with the additional need to be able to flip/mirror the screen in the process for a teleprompter effect.

Came across deskreen which seems to work well and is free (donations encouraged):

Screenshot - 1_19_2022 , 9_03_30 PM.png

N.A.N.Y. 2022 / Thank you to everyone who participated in NANY 2022
« on: January 06, 2022, 06:12 AM »
Thanks to everyone who participated this year.
I have sent out messages on the forum to everyone -- I will get the celebratory mugs handled right away this year (i have also sent out messages to last years participants in case you never got a mug).
If you didn't receive a forum message but you participated in NANY please message me.
You should also see little badge in your forum profile commemorating your participation :)

Living Room / How to boot up an old PDP-11 computer from the 1970s
« on: December 15, 2021, 08:16 PM »
Fun picture guide on how to boot up an old PDP-11 computer from the 1970s:

So you want to play Adventure, but don't know how to turn on the PDP-11? These instructions are for booting our dual rack machine from its RL01 drives, although booting the single cabinet machine from the RK05 is very similar.


Living Room / Anyone watching the 2021 chess championship matches?
« on: December 04, 2021, 04:10 AM »
Game 6 was INTENSE!

Living Room / Nuclear missile silo keyboard repurposed for usb
« on: December 01, 2021, 12:25 PM »
Gothic (John), a programmer and electronics savant, who used to handle server administrator for DonationCoder, had a project featured on today.  Very cool stuff.

He found a weird old keyboard (with trackball) on ebay and it turned out to come from a nuclear missile silo.  After some work with an Arudino board he got it talking to USB interface.  Very cool.

Living Room / Wordle: simple web word game
« on: November 18, 2021, 01:26 AM »
Been enjoying this:

There is only one new word each day, so you can't keep playing it.  Simple fun little brain puzzle word game you play in your web browser:
Screenshot - 11_18_2021 , 1_25_52 AM.png

Just me or is the fedex package tracking alias no longer working?

Google is not happy that I have not told them the target audience age so it removed all my apps.. Going through them now to make sure no kid accidentally downloads an app to make checklists and resubmitting so the google god's will deem them worthy.

Living Room / The frog and the scorpion
« on: October 20, 2021, 07:49 AM »
Alternative tellings.  I found some of these strangely moving:

I will be releasing these as part of NANY 2022:

Code is now available on github:

Some of you know I've gone pretty far down the rabbit hole of video editing for my latest project, a Boardgame YouTube channel (see this thread).

I've actually spent a lot of time creating custom After Effects (motion graphic) scripts and templates for the channel, to speed up the process of creating nice looking edits and overlays.

This week I decided to learn how to code an Adobe Premiere extension, to automate the generation of YouTube timestamps and to make it easier to navigate around the interesting parts of nested sequences.

Here's a teaser screenshot of my extension called "TimeStamper":


From the README:

Scans your active sequence and builds a timestamp list of "notable" clips and mogrt item times in your active sequence.
Mogrt items are listed with text field values.
The timestamp list is presented on the extension panel as a clickable list to quickly jump to locations.
The timestamp list is exported to a timestamp text file in your project directory in YouTube timestamp format, for easy copy+paste into a YouTube video description to provice clickable timestamp links for your video.

Nice long essay on ArsTechnica
Google Talk, Google's first-ever instant messaging platform, launched on August 24, 2005. This company has been in the messaging business for 16 years, meaning Google has been making messaging clients for longer than some of its rivals have existed. But thanks to a decade and a half of nearly constant strategy changes, competing product launches, and internal sabotage, you can't say Google has a dominant or even stable instant messaging platform today.

DC Website Help and Extras / Server being updated today 8/24/21
« on: August 24, 2021, 02:11 AM »
Just a note that I will be doing some server software updates tonight; you might expect some hiccups and downtime.

Try showing this to your cat:

My cat doesn't care what's on tv/monitor EXCEPT if there is some big circle comes on the screen, then she panics like it is a horrible monster?

The video above is just an example of one that scares her -- but it doesn't have to be a moving animation -- any giant circle will do.

What's up with that?

Living Room / Who here makes ice cream?
« on: August 04, 2021, 04:09 PM »
I've been on an ice cream making kick lately.  Anyone else enjoy making it?

Favorite flavors: Coffee, Mint, Strawberry.

I started with the "Perfect Scoop" book:
But it's a little too custardy (egg yolk) heavy for me; I prefer my ice cream a little more airy.
Ben and Jerry's older book has a recipe that uses 2 whole eggs, whipped (not cooked), that I have really been enjoying:

N.A.N.Y. 2022 / NANY 2022 Pledge - Oculus Quest VR Game - Withdrawn
« on: August 03, 2021, 02:24 PM »
I posted here my experience buying an Oculus Quest 2 recently: https://www.donation...ic=51544.0;topicseen

I'm working on a game for it, which will be a NANY 2022 release!

Living Room / Trying to remember an old flash game?
« on: August 02, 2021, 01:07 AM »
Does anyone remember a game we discussed on this forum MANY years ago.. I think it was Flash-based, set in a train, very atmospheric and mysterious.. i think as a player you were supposed to be dead, traveling to the afterlife or something..  I think it was kind of like an adventure game.. or maybe it was just a mini flash animated movie?

I feel like I need to say a public thank you to the mods who have been working hard to keep the forum spam free. Especially Deozaan lately.
This work is almost completely unseen by everyone, because it happens behind the scenes, but I can see from the moderation logs that every day, multiple times per day, tirelessly, the spammers are being removed before they are ever seen.
On behalf of everyone here, thank you!

 :Thmbsup: :Thmbsup: :Thmbsup:

So I bought an Oculus Quest 2 VR headset ($300 amazon).

Screenshot - 7_11_2021 , 4_09_26 AM_thumb002.png

I was just blown away by the experience.  Both the quality of the experience inside the VR world, and also how painless the whole process is.
It's a standalone device, no need for cables to a computer (essentially powered by a phone-grade android cpu).

I have not been keeping up with the progress in VR technology.  I'm still in shock how cool the experience is.  I think we are going to see mass adoption of this stuff in the coming years.  As someone who is not really a video gamer and is mostly a board gamer, I really do think this is all going to change with VR.  Very cool stuff.


(I've decided to try some tinkering with coding for it using Unity).

Gizmo's Freeware (Tech Support Alert) website put up a blog post today announcing they are shutting down.


Screenshot - 7_3_2021 , 10_16_04 PM.png

I've told this story before, but when I put up the DonationCoder website 16 years ago to ask for donations for a couple of programs I had written, Gizmo's was one of the 2 or 3 websites that were just immediately supportive and friendly, and the community around gizmo's was so encouraging of the idea.

Ian Richards (Gizmo) was always super supportive and friendly and encouraging of independent freeware developers, and gizmo's site has remained *THE* site to send people for recommendations of what freeware to use.

If Gizmo's is really shuttering up shop it will be a major loss to the freeware community, and the site will be sorely missed.

I've spend the last 7 months or so plugging away at my new YouTube project.. Learning a bunch of new skills, having a bunch of fun.
I recently decided to make a fun retro intro for the YouTube channel, heavily inspired on the intro theme to The Odd Couple, one of my very favorite sitcoms (from the 1970).

I began with a copy of the intro which was about 118 seconds, and got down to 20 (still a bit long), but here it is, scored with the original television show theme music:

So here's my challenge -- I can't really use that original amazing 1970s music by Neal Hefti.. I need to have some original (or licensed) music, but I'd love for it to have a similar sound and feel so it mirrors it's original inspiration.

Is anyone here capable of that or know where I could find someone who was?

I need the full rich sound, so a soloist on the piano or guitar is not going to work.. It needs some horns, drums, etc..


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