System.Blog.Martens.Ben

The Tech Blog of Ben Martens

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  • Blog Post: Vista Shortcuts

    The less I have to use the mouse the better. It only serves to slow me down. I've memorized hundreds of shortcuts in the programs I use regularly, but with the release of Vista, I have a slew of new shortcuts to play with. Here are a few of my favorites: WinKey + number Starts a program from your quick...
  • Blog Post: MSDN User Submitted Content

    The new version of MSDN online has a great feature that allows users to add text to existing pages. In a way it turns MSDN into a giant wiki while drawing a firm line between user-submitted content and official Microsoft content. The feature hasn't been out in the wild for long, so every page doesn't...
  • Blog Post: Sync Your Favorites Folder

    I long ago gave up trying to keep my external links synced up across multiple computers. A solution like Windows Live Favorites is clearly the way to go for a situation like that. However, it's against most company policies to save a link to an internal site on a public facing website like Windows Live...
  • Blog Post: libusb + Zune = Trouble

    Today I started getting errors when I was connecting my Zune. After being connected for a minute or two, the Zune would show up with a yellow error icon in the Device Manager. The same thing happened when I first picked it up, but I was due for a reformat anyway and that solved the problem. I was really...
  • Blog Post: XPath Visualizer

    Today I found myself writing a bunch of XPath expressions. It was cumbersome to run the full program to test out my expressions so I headed off to live.com in search of a tool. XPath Visualizer was exactly what I needed. You point it to your XML file, type in your query, and click Select Nodes. The result...
  • Blog Post: Disable the Motorola Q Camera Sound

    I searched high and low for an option to disable the camera shutter noise, but as far as I can tell, there isn't one. After a bit of searching, I pieced together a solution. Please note that this is not a supported method of working on your phone and messing with the registry is a good way to brick your...
  • Blog Post: Zune + Pioneer Navigation System

    Last week I spent some time behind the dashboard of my car hooking up my new Zune to my Pioneer AVIC-D2. Actually it only took about 10 minutes and most of that time was removing and reinstalling the plastic facia of the dashboard. I took some video and sent it around to an internal Zune discussion list...
  • Blog Post: What's My Motivation?

    As a test engineer, it is my job to design and write tests that find every possible bug or defect in the software. My test team is motivated by the drive to ship a quality product. But what about testers who benefit from bugs in their software? For example, my phone bill had an error. This was an error...
  • Blog Post: Knowledge Network

    Just before I left my previous job, my group was selected to be part of the Knowledge Network TAP. I only got to see a few demos, but it looks incredible. I did a bit of playing around in college with analyzing my inbox to see who I communicated with the most. KN takes it to another level by aggregating...
  • Blog Post: Upcoming Webcasts

    Unwrapped for Financial Services Webcast Series III Starting September 6, 2006 and running through September 12, 2006 Now in its third year, the Unwrapped for Financial Services Webcast Series is back! Sessions will be both technical and strategic in nature, covering the newest Microsoft solutions...
  • Blog Post: Tech Blogging

    Welcome to my new blog. Some of you may know me from the blog I've been running at Studio711.com for the past four years. Nothing I say over there is related in any way to Microsoft and I'd like to keep it that way. So I've started up this new blog which is hosted by my employer to talk about Microsoft...
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