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Thinking at the TV world, it's not so hard to know what that famous actor, or singer, or showman, is doing now, if he/she's still in the show-business, or not, what's the new activity, etc.

Let's collect in this thread which are the current occupations for the men/women of the past in the computer (hardware/software) business, if they have a site/blog, if they're working on some projects, etc. Please be really concise, do not list everything related: those reading and interested will have enough elements for a deeper search for informations through Google or similar services.

Please suggest whatever "form" to complete fits for your case, but let's try to stick on a shared one after some posts.

Stimulated by an Amiga resemblance thread I can think to this contribution for the start:

name: Carl Sassenrath.
in the old days (mainly): worked as Manager of Operating Systems at a small startup called "Amiga" (yes, the one we all know ;) then for "Apple" at the Advanced Technoloy Group, and lot of interesting stuff.
today (mainly): CTO at REBOL Technologies

Living Room / Re: Any old Amiga users among us?
« on: December 10, 2007, 04:21 AM »
I got it down from the loft last year, and it still managed to get from being switched on to Workbench fully loaded and ready to go in ~10 seconds. How long do our PCs take to boot these days?

I remember a very nice demo (State of the Art by Spaceballs) which loaded and run from a floppy disk in the very same moment it was inserted into the drive. I mean, you turned the Amiga on, inserted the disk in drive, and after some milliseconds you were staring at a ultrasmooth vector gfx & sound animations dancing on the monitor while still loading stuff... (with Flash you can do something similar now, but still not as smooth, and not without plenty of MHz, RAM, and a full OS loaded!!!)
Which consumer non-Amiga machines allow to do that today, if I want this kind of feature and I have whatever budget? (I'm serious, let me know :)
Turn on -> (no wait) -> custom software running

Living Room / Re: 32bit vs 64bit Vista performance comparison?
« on: December 08, 2007, 10:09 AM »
If this can be any useful, here's a post by Aaron Giles with some benchmarks for MAME compilation on his new system with Vista 64-bit... but the comparison is with a different machine, so probably it's not so interesting here.

Living Room / Re: Any old Amiga users among us?
« on: December 08, 2007, 09:45 AM »
My Amiga 500 is still in front on me, while I use my PC. I hardly will put it away.
What about the way the creators named the main chips inside? Weren't they among the most creative tech minds in the world at that time? :)
I remember there was a legend about a "hello mom" message by one of the engeeners in some unused blocks of the ROM, do you know if it was true and details?

The only bad thing in Amiga imho was the fact that a lot of time was needed to retrieve the disk directory when it was full of little files.
Every other memory about that little cheap computer is something like... "SO GOOD!"
Besides, when I bought it all my nice C64 joysticks where compatible, nice save...
And, that was my first approach with that useful thing called mouse bundled in the box, and with an OS that had a built in voice synthesis software, and a very well written and fun cmyk user manual, and... ok ok, back to work, sigh.

Anyone have any requests for how we can make the newsletter better or more interesting?

Don't know if this makes sense, judge yourself or correct as necessary:

A section where are summarized (if any) projects (software/services/etc.), commercial or not, which seem to take inspiration from projects or forum posts proposed on donationcoder. Of course, the projects must have a birth date successive to the corresponding entries on donationcoder, and the "inspiration" has not necessary to be declared from the official project owners in order to include it in the summary. The so-called "inspiration" can also be just random, let's say "in the air", so that we can see an idea for some nice project was already there, written in gold characters deep into the donationcoder forums, posted by some user here long before.
Users of donationcoder shall notify these (maybe rare?) events when they occur so that they can be included in the newsletter.
Obviously, every entry in the summary will provide at least two links: one for the "official" project, and one for the corresponding "far-sighted" forum post on donationcoder...

General Software Discussion / maemo mapper
« on: April 22, 2007, 10:18 AM »
I know it's not for laptop, btw I can say maemo mapper is a simple but nice free gps software for Nokia 770 and Nokia N800.

General Software Discussion / Re: TextPad updated to 5.0
« on: March 10, 2007, 12:35 PM »
Go TextPad go! Yes this is the best text editor ever, I feel poor and less powerful without it, even if I can use other editors with no problem.

Let me use this post for a little suggestion I'd love in future versions of this editor, who knows the author could been reading this thread :)
(maybe this should go in the coding snacks section...)

Modern editors have code-folding; but TextPad should introduce... the text-folding(TM)!
Here it is:

First, "folding comments" must be defined: e.g. using "@@@" as the first chars of a comment line (after the comment chars for code, see example below), makes the line the "fold begin" command for TextPad, with the following text being the "label" for the folded section; the "fold end" can be the subsequent comment line starting with "@@@". TextPad automatically makes the plus and minus signs to open/close sections, and adds a control char (e.g. "c") after the end section comment to save the information of section fold open/closed. The control char can also be added manually. Ok, that's twisted, let's see an example: let's say we're writing a PHP script, so the comments are "#" or "//". If we write:

1. echo "text-folding";
 3. # @@@ Three echoes of the same string here
 4. echo "text-folding";
 5. echo "text-folding";
 6. echo "text-folding";
 7. # @@@
 9. # Two echoes of the same string
10. echo "text-folding";
11. echo "text-folding";

TextPad will automatically add a little "-" sign on the left of line 3, and if we click on it then lines 4, 5, 6, 7 "collapse" in line 3, which is rendered in some different way and says Three echoes of the same string here. When the section is collapsed, TextPad automatically adds the "c" character after the "@@@" in line 7, which by the way will never be visible: so, when saving the file, closing TextPad and reopening it, the section will be rendered as collapsed (because TextPad finds "@@@c" instead of "@@@").

Of course, manually writing "@@@c" as section folding end marker, will tell TextPad to collapse it (without having to come back on the section folding begin marker and clicking the "-" sign to collapse the section, we TextPad users love very fast-action ;)

Reversely, when we expand a collapsed section, TextPad deletes the "c" char in the end marker, in order to store the information that "the user wants this section not collapsed when re-opening the file".

So, the code above will be rendered as:
1. echo "text-folding";
 3+ [Three echoes of the same string here]
 9. # Two echoes of the same string
10. echo "text-folding";
11. echo "text-folding";

Indenting folding comments could be interpreted by TextPad as inner levels of folding. E.g.:

# @@@ My favourite movies:
  # @@@ movie 1:
    # @@@ author: name1 surname1
    # @@@ actors: ...
  # @@@
  # @@@ movie 2:
    # @@@ author: name2 surname2
    # @@@ actors: ...
  # @@@
# @@@
# @@@ My favourite OAVs:
  # @@@ movie 1:
    # @@@ author: name1 surname1
    # @@@ animators: ...
  # @@@
  # @@@ movie 2:
    # @@@ author: name2 surname2
    # @@@ animators: ...
  # @@@
# @@@

Ok, hope the TextPad author takes inspiration from this request, I dream of it from my early days of using a text editor :)

Received the key for my prize DHTLmenu, thanks Mouser for having reminded them :)

I'd like to know if anyone among genezip, Parchuvegal, mikebd and fredchoum has received the unlock key for the DHTMLmenu software: I've sent an email yesterday but still no reply from them. Btw maybe it's just too early, I'll wait some more time without pestering them...

Yes yes yes! Very nice, what a lovely unexpected surprise! Usually I don't expect to win something when the luck has a big role :)

PS: For the future, I suggest to add a link to the corresponding announcement post in the forum (this one) when sending the mail to each winner, because I wanted to show my appreciation for the gift but didn't know there was an announcement on the forum, so I've searched a bit and finally found this post.

So: thanks a lot!

Post New Requests Here / IDEA: configure double-click max speed
« on: September 16, 2006, 08:35 AM »
I'd like to have a way to choose the level of speed of two consecutive clicks for the OS to say it is a double-click. This is not the same thing that we can configure from the Control Panel -> Mouse, it's somehow the opposite: i.e. I'd like to discard double-clicks which are too much fast, making them behaving like if they were just single clicks.

So, to make it clear:
Click-[some time]-Click
  • if "some time" is less than the specified interval of time, we translate it as a "single click"
  • if "some time" is greater than the specified interval of time, we translate it as a "double click"

It would be great if it was done as a AutoHotKey script. I think it's not easy, we need to "capture" the double-clicks and avoid them to do what they're going to do, that is behaving like normal double-clicks... I wonder if it can really be done or it's impossible.

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: simple quick'n'dirty alarm
« on: September 14, 2006, 09:07 AM »
Thanks! It was that!  :-[
Attached the fixed version.

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: simple quick'n'dirty alarm
« on: September 14, 2006, 05:11 AM »
uhm... it seemed to work with simple tests, but today I've realized it was an illusion: it just triggers after the same amount of time, regardless of the alarm variable. If someone figures out how to fix it I'll be very glad, I'm still not very confident with the AutoHotKey language.

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: simple quick'n'dirty alarm
« on: September 12, 2006, 05:59 PM »
Done! I post it here, if anyone wants to use/improve it. Thanks to Skrommel for his "tutorial" on how to script in AutoHotKey, which is the code itself of his nice and polished scripts :)

EDIT: Still doesn't work... help wanted

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: Taskbar hider
« on: September 12, 2006, 06:50 AM »
I haven't been able to find a single small program that does only that... hiding the tasks.
Maybe this one is what you're searching for?
WinBoss Classic

Post New Requests Here / Re: IDEA: simple quick'n'dirty alarm
« on: September 12, 2006, 06:36 AM »
Thanks, but it's not what I want. I want an AutoHotKey script so I can change it as much as I like, depending on the situation.

Mainly, I want to use the PC speaker as alarm output, but I want to fine-control the frequency and the repeating cycles of the beep, and change them easily (i.e. editing the script). And when I want to play a wav file instead, I should be able to, having an editable ahk script. Moreover, I don't want the app in the taskbar, so it doesn't bother me when I press Alt-Tab: the ahk script solves this issue too.

The one I've posted would be the best for me, but there's something which prevents it from working, so I ask here help to fix the bug, as I am sadly a big fan of AutoHotKey, but a very beginner in scripting for it ;)

Post New Requests Here / IDEA: simple quick'n'dirty alarm
« on: September 12, 2006, 05:23 AM »
I'm sorry I don't know if there is a better place than this in these forums where similar help requests can be posted, so please forgive me and point me to the right forum. Btw, what I want is someone fixing this little script for me, as I can't see where the bug is. Simply I'd like a script where I manually edit the alarm time, and it beeps when the time is passed. It loads fine, no error messages, but it just doesn't work. Thanks in advance, and please don't forget to tell me which is the right place where to post help requests on little coding snacks which probably are not fresh "ideas" and could already exist somewhere...

alarm=2030 ;alarm time (hhmm)
checkevery=59000 ;time between checks in ms


If (now>=start)

Woah, thanks, almost exactly what I wanted! Even if this is my first experience with AutoHotKey coding, I've successfully modified the script to my like. Here it is in case someone other can find it useful as I do:

;Edit contents of text boxes in favourite editor
;2/21/05 - savage -- modified 30/08/06 insert_nick

; Usage: Configure the following two paths with your preferred text-editor and temp file (if doesn't exist then it's created). If you have a cursor active into a textarea (e.g. in a browser window) you can press CTRL-ALT-C to load its content into the text editor; make your changes, and press CTRL-ALT-V to transfer the modified content back into the original textarea. The text editor is still open with the temp file loaded, so you can edit it again and again, committing changes into the original textarea by pressing CTRL-ALT-V from the editor (because it saves the document to make sure it is updated with edits).
; Summing up:
; CTRL-ALT-C to transfer a textarea content into the text editor
; CTRL-ALT-V to transfer the active document of the text editor into the original source textarea
; Make sure you adapt the script to let it work with your favourite text editor, e.g. the one considered here saves with CTRL-S, but maybe your one uses a different keyboard shortcut.

;put the path to your editor here, you may need to add some parameters if your editor needs any
editor = F:\path\to\favourite\text\editor.exe

;path to place the temp file - you'll probably want to change this. The extension doesn't matter, but it's useful if you know what type of files you're going to edit and your editor can syntax-highlight the code reading the extension
path = F:\tmp\textarea_temp.php

;Selects all text in the textarea, saves to temp file, runs editor on file
   SetKeyDelay, 1
   WinGetActiveTitle, wtitle
   temp = %clipboard%
   Send, ^a
   Send, ^c
   ;if the clipboard didn't change then the box was empty
   If clipboard = %temp%
       clipboard =
   ;In case it wasn't properly deleted
   FileDelete, %path%
   FileAppend, %clipboard%, %path%
   ;refill the clipboard so you can paste things in the editor
   clipboard = %temp%
   Run, %editor% "%path%"   

;Paste content of the temp file into the textarea
   ;save the clipboard again in case you copied anything in the editor
   temp = clipboard
   Send, ^s  ;(the text editor's save command)
   Sleep, 500
   FileRead, clipboard, %path%
   WinActivate, %wtitle%
   WinWaitActive, %wtitle%
   Send, ^a
   Send, ^v
   clipboard = %temp%

-- EDIT: I've now changed the hotkeys because before they interfered with Opera commands, and added a "Sleep, 500" to give the OS the time to complete writing the file.[/code]

MODx is a nice opensource CMS and PHP framework. A very annoying thing when using it is that you edit templates, code snippets, etc. in a small textarea. Of course it's really dirty, so I think everyone like me uses his favourite text editor, and paste into the textarea.

This process believe me is time-consuming and boring, you have to try it. So here it is what I'd like to have:

an AutoHotKey script which triggers when I press a hotkey: I press it when there is a textarea in the browser, in a MODx manager instance, and I want that the actions taken are:
  • copy the text found in the textarea into the clipboard
  • make a temporary file somewhere with .php extension
  • load this file into my favourite text editor (which will syntax-highlight the code because we've set the right extension for it)

Ok then I make my changes to the file, and when I'm done I press another hotkey, so that the actions taken by the script are:
  • save the file (Ctrl-S, or other user defined keystrokes, depending on the text editor... hey it's a script, so I can easily modify it by myself ;)
  • copy the text into the textarea in the browser, where the MODx manager instance is
  • optional, for the very lazy: submit the changes pressing the "save" button for me into the MODx manager interface :)

That's all, isn't it useful? The MODx community would rejoice... Btw it could be easily adapted to whatever CMS out there, if needed.

I've just added another (interesting?) section to the description of the idea, after the horizontal rule.

Great! PixelNotifier and ProcessGuard scripts by Skrommel are very useful for my purposes! Thank you very much for the suggestion, now I've a way to roughly accomplish what I described. Anyway, the complete utility described in the post would be far more usable.

So I was right feeling this was a nice a place...

(welcome to the forum by the way.)

Thanks, bye!

Hi to all there! This is an idea I had years ago, I've sometimes searched for an app like this because I'd like to have and use it a lot, but still no luck, I don't know if it exists btw I can't find it.

Really, I think this is an app that could potentially grow big so it would need some more development efforts than "one hour" of work I suspect ;)  Btw, I think the "core features" could be coded in a small amount of time by someone who knows how to take a map of the screen (something like a screenshot program). Maybe it's possible to make everything described here with AutoHotKey, but I've discovered it just yesterday so I'm not able to do it by now.

So let me try to explain the idea, then the app. Lot of times I'm there waiting for my PC to have a job done, or I simply would like to catch an event, and usually I have to use my eyes, even if I'd like to look elsewhere, or even turn the monitor off... I call it the damn human polling, something that imho should be reduced as much as possible, cause we "multitasking users" like to do lots of other stuff away from the PC when it's working for us, especially when it wants not to be disturbed to complete the work well. This is why interrupts have been invented, but still we have not a good and uniform system for human interrupts while using a PC: it is definitely something that should be hardcoded in the OS.

Meanwhile, waiting for an OS with this hardcoded, why not anticipate the times? ;)  Think to a system trayed app, which can be enabled/disabled. It lets the user define "interrupts", and "actions". When defining a new interrupt, there are some "primitives" that can be used, and logic operators. The most useful primitive for me (and this is what I'd like in the very first implementation of the app, if it should not grow in future, otherwise it will be useless for me) would be "look for event in desktop area": it would let the user define an area of the desktop with the mouse (the entire desktop being the biggest "area", and a single pixel being the smallest one... and in case of use of multiple desktops, it would be nice to support monitoring them too, but this is feed for advanced implementations!), then the user should define the "event" to look for, choosing e.g. between:
  • changes
  • becomes...
  • includes...
  • includes color...
  • (...other eventual ideas)
Choosing "changes", the app will look for whatever pixel change into the defined area; choosing "becomes...", the user have to also submit an image (or a color, if the defined area is just one pixel) for the app to confront with; choosing "includes color..." the user have to also submit a color for the app to look for its presence in the defined area; etc.

Another useful "primitive" would be "look for text in desktop": it would let the user define a word or a group of words, for the app triggering when the same text is found somewhere in the desktop. As a sample text, think something like "completed" or "100%" or "done" ;)

Another *very useful* one would be "look for window caption", so that we can trigger our app using the features of other apps like AutoIt2 or AutoHotKey, we let them trigger on the desired event not implemented in our app, and make them pop a window with the caption we've defined, so that a big amount of already implemented "primitives" is ready to serve the user ;)))

Ok, that's enough for primitives, of course there are lots of them we can invent, btw I think you've caught the concept by now.
It's important the "logic operators" implementation to bind multiple primitives: that is, the interrupt can trigger for example when the primitive "look for event in desktop area" OR "look for text in desktop" triggers; of course there will be AND, OR, NOT operators.

Then, the "actions": simply let the user define something to do; defining actions, they can be associated with interrupts. E.g. an action could be "execute program" (and the user will specify a path and parameters for the application to run), or "play sound file", or (really important for me, because I often have my speakers off) "play sound with PC speaker (beeper)", or "say...." (and the user specifies a text to read with voice synthesis), etc.

Moreover, the app should let the user define a label for every entry (interrupt + action), and it should be possible to load the app with a label as parameter: this way, an AutoHotKey script could detect that I'm burning a DVD, and automatically call the app passing the label parameter "scream_when_burned".

Good, I hope everything's clear. Let me summarize with an example setup:

  • entry "scream_when_render_completed":
    interrupt "progress bar reaches the end" = primitive "look for event in desktop area"
    action "play sound file"
    check frequency: "every minute"
  • entry "beep_when_burning_finished":
    interrupt "burning program has done is job" = primitive "look for event in desktop area" OR primitive "look for text in desktop"
    action "irritatingly beep with PC speaker until mousemove or keypress"
    check frequency: "every 5 seconds"
  • ...

You see, we can define as much "entries" as we want in the app, with corresponding one-word "labels"; each one is an "interrupt"-"action" pair, where an interrupt is defined as a group of primitives bound through logical operators, with every primitive having parameters defined by the user; every interrupt has a multi-word label, so that they can be reused for other entries; actions have a multi-word label too, so that they can be defined and reused at pleasure. I've specified "check frequency" values for each entry, because e.g. it would be unwise to check every microsecond if the render has been completed, maybe it would slow down the render itself! Or e.g. it would be useless to check every minute for a task which completes in about a minute; so it's clear that each entry must have a corresponding user-defined check frequency.

I hope someone finds this idea interesting to implement, as I'd like to leave my PC doing its time-consuming tasks while I'm playing with my brother in another room and set loud horns to call me when the job's done and my PC is ready to go with other tasks. Or I'd like it to automatically turn off when it completes a big rendering, because I'm sleeping deep in my bed and there's no option in my rendering program, and the only thing changing in the screen when it completes is the progress bar reaching the end...

-- EDIT: A complete app would be very appetible if provides integrated tools for easying the process of interrupt definition as much as possible, almost "on the fly". Mainly, the primitives involving detection of graphics or texts in the desktop (changes, inclusions, coincidences, etc.) should have aid tools. I think to this process, e.g. for a CD burning job:
  • the user starts the burning with his favourite program
  • from the system trayed app, he launches the menu entry capture the no-trigger situation ("still working")
  • the app internally saves a dump of the words found in the desktop: something like a AutoHotKey's "window spy", done on every window of the desktop
  • the app lets the user define a rectangular region on the desktop with the mouse, and saves a dump image of the chosen region (and tooltips could hint the user on how to choose the region selection, and to try taking it as small as possible)
  • the app saves a dump image of the entire desktop
  • the user waits for the burning job to complete and go on "steady state", then from the system trayed app he launches the menu entry capture the trigger situation ("job done!")
  • the app again internally saves a dump of the words found in the desktop
  • the app saves another dump image of the the previously user-defined region
  • the app saves another dump image of the entire desktop

Having this done, the app can provide some sort of "diff" of the two text dumps, and a ready-to-use couple of images dumping the interesting areas, for the definition of the primitives; e.g. the user could set a primitive to search in the screen for the first region image (so there will be no fixed position for the area to watch), then watch the region in the found position and compare it with the second region image.

The more precise of you there maybe have noticed I've included also a "the app saves a dump image of the entire desktop" in the list, and again after the job's done situation; these dumps have no meaning it seems, as the user defines a specific region... but here it is why I've included them: the app could provide a "simulate!" feature; that is, after the user has defined everything, he could roughly try if everything should go well just executing a very quick simulation. It could be accomplished making the app show the first desktop dump image during a defined time window, followed by the second desktop dump image during another time window, and redirecting every text check to the text dumps rather than the real desktop entities, of course using the first text dump during the first time window and the second text dump during the second time window.

Maybe it seems a bit twisted to read now, but I have a clear idea that everything would be neat and easy to use for everyone if well implemeted. But, as previously anticipated, I'm convinced that this is not really a "coding snack", so if there is a more appropriate section in this forum where to post it, please let me know and excuse me, I'm really new there. Bye!

Hi to all, this is first post in this forum!
Maybe you could be interested in this app I found some time ago and use:

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