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Category: Web/Tech

Google Sheets Tips

Google Sheets Tips

To sort a row of columns:
Define the following formula on a blank row:
Then just copy the sorted row and copy...special..values only
Delete all but the copied row
grep tips

grep tips

The following will create a new file with lines removed containing given pattern:

cat file.txt | grep -v "pattern" >filtered.txt

Match two words:
grep -E -i -w 'word1|word2' sourcefile.txt
grep -rl "string" /path // -r recurse, -l output filenames only

Impossible Creatures

Impossible Creatures


Still, one of my favorites games of all time.  I usually fire up an old Windows box and play the campaign over Christmas break.

I managed to network 4 stations and the cousins came over for an afternoon of Impossible Creatures frenzy!



Password Myths

Password Myths

You can find plenty of arguments to counter the points made in the article linked below, but I happen to agree with many of the points made.
I password is useless if you can’t remember it and these days, we all have tons we have to remember.

At work I had to write a password validator to use in a mobile app’s enrollment screen.  I chose to only allow the special characters found on a standard keyboard. No extended ascii characters allowed.   Limiting support calls was my main motivation.

Myth #2. Dj#wP3M$c is a Great Password

A common myth is that totally random passwords spit out by password generators are the best passwords. This is not true. While they may in fact be strong passwords, they are usually difficult to remember, slow to type, and sometimes vulnerable to attacks against the password generating algorithm. It is easy to create passwords that are just as strong but much easier to remember by using a few simple techniques. For example, consider the password “”. This password utilizes upper and lower-case letters, two numbers, and two symbols. The password is 20 characters long and can be memorized with very little effort; perhaps even by the time you finish this article. Moreover, this password can be typed very fast. The portion “Makeit20” alternates between left and right-handed keys on the keyboard, improving speed, decreasing typos, and decreasing the chances of someone being able to discover your password by watching you (for a list of nearly eight thousand English words that alternate between left and right-handed keys, see

The best technique for creating complex passwords that are easier to remember is to use data structures that we are accustomed to remembering. Such structures also make it easy to include punctuation characters in the password, as in the e-mail address example used above. Other data structures that are easy to remember are phone numbers, addresses, names, file paths, etc. Consider also that certain elements make things more memorable for us. For example, patterns, repetition, rhymes, humor, and even offensive words all make passwords that we will never forget.

Click here for full article










How to refresh Facebook cache

How to refresh Facebook cache

When creating a Facebook post, if you include a url to a website, Facebook will preview the website in your post.  Facebook looks in a cached version of the home page so if it has changed since Facebook cached it, it may not preview correctly.  To force Facebook to fetch a fresh version, go here:


Google Maps vs Apple Maps

Google Maps vs Apple Maps

Great analysis of the differences between Google Maps and Apple Maps

Here is there summary:

We looked at 54 pairs of maps across three cities (New York, San Francisco, and London) and found several significant differences:

  • Apple Maps, on average, labels more citiesthan Google at every zoom.
  • Google Maps, on average, labels more roadsthan Apple on nearly every zoom.
  • For two-thirds of zooms, both maps generallyshow the same number of roads. For the remaining third, Apple almost always shows more roads.
  • Both maps, on average, label a similar number of POIs—but have only 15% of their POIs in common on an average zoom.
  • Both maps also prioritize different kinds of POIs: Google Maps heavily prioritizes transit, while Apple prioritizes landmarks. Apple also generally shows a greater number of POI categories on a given zoom—and shows twice as many restaurants and shops as Google.


How to combine multiple PDF files into one

How to combine multiple PDF files into one

This is very useful if you use a mac.  Just open the pdf files you want to combine into one using Preview.  Open the sidebar from each document and drag the page icons from one window to another.  Save the document where you combined the pdf files.  Be sure to view all pages before saving or you will only save the current page.  If you still get just one page, then simply select Print of your new document and save it back out as a PDF.

Click here for details


Time Warner Cable without a cable box

Time Warner Cable without a cable box

I don’t have a cable box in my office but I do have an XBOX.  Time Warner offers an XBOX app that allows you access to 300+ cable stations.  Came in handy today since I wanted to put on the Olympics (in HD) in the background while I worked.  We also use the TW app for iPad & Android tablets to watch shows on demand.  NOW I’m starting to feel like I’m getting a better value for my Time Warner cable service.


Embed or Link to multi-calendar view of your Google Calendar

Embed or Link to multi-calendar view of your Google Calendar

These are the steps to embed a google calendar in your website:

  1. Next to ANY calendar that you want to include, hover to the right of it to reveal the drop-down menu icon, and select Calendar Settings
  2. In the “Embed This Calendar” section select the link “Customize the color, size, and other options”
  3. Select the other calendars that you want to include in your view under the “Calendars to Display” section
  4. Select any other options. Don’t forget to give this “multi-calendar” view a title, then click the Update Html button in the top right.
  5. Copy and paste the html code generated to your web page.
  6. Some sites do not allow you to include an <iframe>.  For WordPress sites, you must install a plugin such as THIS one.

What if you just want to LINK to the multi-calendar view or email someone a link to the view?

You can do this by taking the embed code and cleaning it up a bit as follows:

  1. Remove the iframe tag and src=.  You only need the actual url and all it’s parameters.
  2. When you copy and pasted the embed code, you are likely to see several occurrences of &amp; which will cause the link to show you a blank calendar.  Replace these occurrences with just the & character.

Example original embed code:

<iframe src=”;height=600&amp;wkst=1&amp;bgcolor=%23FFFFFF
color=%23711616&amp;ctz=America%2FChicago” style=” border-width:0 ” width=”800″ height=”600″ frameborder=”0″ scrolling=”no”></iframe>

After cleanup, hyperlink to use:
ctz=America%2FChicago” style=” border-width:0 ” width=”800″ height=”600″
frameborder=”0″ scrolling=”no”>