Samsung 7 Series Slate VHD’s Boot Menu

So far so good.  No problems installing Windows 7 Enterprise in a VHD.

I did have to prep the USB stick manually though.  I also updated the firmware first.

The Intel wireless driver failed on the first attempt, but I think it was due to a missing Intel chipset driver that was available through Windows Update.

The boot menu maps the volume and rotate lock keys to Up/Down/Enter so you can select OS options without a keyboard attached.

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Fly we away

Special OW livery to LAX.

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Stupid Zune

I would totally love my Windows Phone 7.5 if it weren’t for Zune.  Specifically Podcasts.

It’s another example, like Windows Media Connect, of how relying on metadata makes the feature frustrating, time-consuming and broken.

I frequently get Podcast parts that are mis-tagged rendering them invisible to Zune, this is despite putting them in the very explicitly named Podcasts library.  Why do I have to tell Zune twice that this is a Podcast by putting it in the Podcast folder them making sure it’s tagged as a Podcast?

This strange design decision now forces me into a rather tedious ritual of checking all the tags, then comparing what Zune sees to what’s in the Podcast folder, then laboriously correcting the tags just to satisfy Zune.

This would be slightly tolerable for a music library but Podcasts, for me at least, are pretty much throw-aways so all, all the editing time is just wasted.

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There Aren’t Enough Leslie Knopes

Civil service requires someone of a special nature and the epitome of that type is presented as Leslie Knope from the very entertaining series, Parks and Recreation.

Our government is by and large a failure because at some point in the past, probably during FDR’s administration, we exhausted the pool of Americans with the character required for civil service.  Yes, they are that special. 

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The other BizTalk Zombie

I just figured out why I don’t like developing WCF adapters for BizTalk.

WCF was created to support a common set of protocols based mostly around SOAP and it’s descendents.  Fine and dandy if that’s what you’re faced with.

However, if you’ve determined you need to write a custom adapter, you’ve pretty much already ruled out those common protocols.  At this point, forcing your solution to work around WCF just feels wrong, and takes a lot more code and config goop to implement (remember, custom protocol implementations).

Envision a meticulously architected airport counter*.  The traveler is faced with two options, navigate an empty maze of stanchions with expediters strategically place to branch the flow based on unnecessarily complicated attributes, or, walk directly up the elite lane.

The maze becomes especially silly when you realize that every counter position, every terminal and every agent can handle every type of transaction.

But, but…At busy stations, avoid all the complexity and just use the httpBinding…err, uh…the kiosk.  Or better yet, go REST and call res.

*At a small to mid-size station where most system travellers enter the system.

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Happy Consequences

Original story:

McDonald’s: Apple slices in every Happy Meal

Someone at McDonald’s is really thinking right as their recent quarterly performances indicates.  This is a great example of “two birds” thinking.

By eliminating the current choices and including only the apple slices, they create an irresistible upsell opportunity.  Despite the most intense wishful thinking by the health lobby, kids will still want freedom fries and McDonald’s is assuming most adults will acquiesce to purchasing a side of fries.

Now McDonald’s get the double benefit of appeasing regulators and additional revenue.  Win-win!

The only downside will be the tons of unconsumed apples heading directly to the landfills.  That’s the shame of unintended consequences.

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0 Based Arrays

Boom times created by basic human nature (ie. conservative principles) are a tough time for liberal and progressive thinkers due to the bountiful evidence of their previous, and unfortunately future, failures.

In these times they resort to many creative arguments which carry a significantly higher emotional appeal than rational.  Among the most popular is the observation of the income gap, or wealth gap or nom du jour.

I am not fooled by this statistical trick for the simple reason that the bottom is a fixed point.  The ‘poor’ will always be at or close to 0 while the ‘rich’ will be valued at an ever-increasing numerical value.

Even in a slow-growth economy, the normal inflationary trend of the currency will cause a larger gap without translating to any real increase in purchasing power.

What the liberals and progressives will never point out is that during past expansions, the vast majority of people moved up on the scale and away from 0, but conveniently for their contrived argument, 0 remains 0.

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