Category Archives: Misc

Things that are not techie stuff, but I feel like I want to talk about anyway.

Who’s Been Viewing My Facebook Page?

Facebook UnfriendI thought I would put up a quick post on this topic because I keep seeing it make the rounds on Question/Answer sites like Askeville, Yahoo and the like. It’s interesting to see the answers that some people provide, from it cannot be done to it can just do this or buy my special software tool and see everything! I am not sure why people are all that tied up about who is looking at their Facebook page, but, it seems to be important to a lot of folk. Here is what I have been able to find out.

According to Facebook technical folks, the truth is, no one can see who’s been on your Facebook page. There are no features buried in the Facebook settings with that data, and there are no apps that can unearth that information for you. Facebook says that this is one of the most common scam tactics that is used to defraud users of the site. Don’t fall for it; you cannot see who is or has been looking at your profile, and no one can see if you have been looking at theirs.

LOLCat UnfriendIn other news, there are apps and tools to see who’s un-friended you. Facebook tries to minimize these apps, but they can be found. There is one that you download to your computer called UnFriend Finder and another for Android called Friends Checker. Sign in, and they store a list of your friends.  Then, every time you check back, it tells you who’s no longer on the list.  UnFriend Finder also reminds you of friend requests you’ve made that haven’t been answered. For Twitter, Qwitter does the same thing, telling you who’s un-followed you each week. Naturally, the earlier you employ these tools, the more effective they will be.

Please note that mentioning any tools in this post is not an endorsement of those tools, no one here at Solarum has seen or used them in any way and therefore are not recommending them. They are listed for informational purposes only. Hope that helps!!

Check out this cool service – Pastebin

I just recently found this, and I know, a bunch of you probably already know about it and maybe have for a long time. But hey, I just found out about it and it is so cool I just had to tell everyone! The site is called Pastebin and it’s a cool site (the site is very well done!) and service for anytime you are working with code, log files, and/or other gobs of strangely formatted text.

We all know how tough it is to try and past the source of our scripts, or contents of config files or log files into regular forum input boxes. Heck, for that matter, let us not forget how tough it is getting that kind of stuff posted correctly in WordPress itself. This Pastebin site allows you to past your copious amounts of text there, where it has all of the magic juju to display it properly, even formatting code correctly with syntax highlighting. All you have to do, once you paste your text into the bin, is add the link to your post or article or whatever. Then anyone reading it can go check it out at Pastebin and not try and decipher the text in whatever manner it would have gotten mangled on the screen in the first place.

I think this is going to be a great headache save for lots of us as more and more communication goes online, especially in the tech crowd.  Go check out Pastebin [link]now and see for yourself.  They have a Pro option with extra goodies, but you most certainly can use the service for free too.  If you like it, tell your friends too and help ’em out!

Komodo IDE Snippet Variables

Here we go, for anyone out there using Komodo IDE (and maybe Komodo Edit, not sure if this is available in the free version).  Aside from being the coolest and best IDE I have found for editing PHP, PERL, SHELL and other scripts, the environment itself has lots of features.  One cool thing is that you can create “snippets”, which are text files that you can insert into your code files with one click or assignable hot keys.  When you create these snippets you can use variables to add to their functionality.  Some variables get substituted with information at the time you submit them, and some will ask you for information so you can tailor your snippets to suit whatever need you have.  Listed at the end of this post are the variables available for use in snippets, sometimes it’s hard to find them, so I thought I would post them all here.  All snippets aside, I highly recommend that any developer out there working with the earlier mentioned PHP, PERL, and the like, go check out Komodo.  You can start out with the free version, Komodo Edit and see what you think.  Remember, I don’t get paid to tell you that, I am just a very happy user of the product and recommend it to anyone who needs something along those lines.

[[%f]]: file base name
[[%F]]: file path
[[%d]]: directory base name of file
[[%D]]: directory path of file
[[%P]]: path of the active project
[[%p]]: directory path of the active project
[[%L]]: current line number
[[%s]]: selection
[[%S]]: URL-escaped selection
[[%w]]: selection of word under cursor
[[%W]]: URL-escaped selection or word under cursor
[[%guid]]: A new GUID
[[%date]]: Current date
[[%ask]]: Ask when snippet is inserted

Review: Ghost In The Wires

This post is a little bit different than normal, but still applies overall to the scope that I am going for here I think.  I just finished reading a really cool book called Ghost in the Wires written by Kevin Mitnick and William L. Simon with the foreword by Steve Wozniak.  Sounds like a thrill ride already, doesn’t it?

I am sure I don’t have to tell anyone reading this blog who Kevin Mitnick is, but just in case, he’s a well known (in geek circles at least) hacker/social engineer who spent years breaking into corporate systems all over the U.S.  Some of the systems he gained access to belonged to Motorola, Sun Microsystems, Novell, and more.  By the time he was caught and arrested the final time in Raleigh, N.C., in 1995, he was the most wanted computer criminal in the United States.

This book basically tells his story from early in life up to when he got arrested in 1995.  He talks about his exploits, his hacks, the people he hacked with and what is the most entertaining, how he managed to pull off all this crazy stuff.

So, if you are looking for an informative book, as well as one that is funny and entertaining as heck as well, look no further.  The audio book is good, with a great reader, and the hard cover and kindle editions are great too.  I advise you to check one of them out, this book was great!

Check it out at Amazon now: Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker … Or if you’d rather get it for your Kindle, click HERE for the Kindle version!

VMware Virtual Machine Startup Shortcuts

I am going to share a VMware tidbit with you, something that some of you may already know, but for those of you that don’t, it might help out a little bit. This is particularly aimed at the VMware Workstation crowd. OK, first let me setup the background here. I have a virtual machine that I use for development all the time. It’s running on my laptop, along with my dev tools. I can open VMware workstation and then select the machine I want and fire it up and then close Workstation (since it is set to keep VM’s running when Workstation closes) and all that, but this is time consuming and somewhat aggravating if I am in a hurry. The point is, I am lazy and nit picky and making all those clicks and waiting for programs to load is tedious, especially when I sometimes do it several times a day.

So, I found a nifty little command in the directory where VMware Workstation is installed called vmrun.exe. This command allows you to manipulate your VM’s on the command line. With it you can start and stop, pause, take snapshots of your VM’s, plus many, many more actions. Look at the bottom of this article for more information, I have included the output of vmrun.exe’s usage text, and there is a bunch of stuff there!

Now, back to the article here and my purpose for writing it, what I wanted was a quick and easy way to fire up or start that virtual machine so I could use it when needed, but not have to go through all of the above mentioned steps and wait times. What I came up with was a quick little batch file that when executed, uses that vmrun.exe command to start my virtual machine, easy as pie.

Continue reading VMware Virtual Machine Startup Shortcuts

Mobile Data On Disk

Today I thought I would show you a neat trick you can do with your PC or laptop and a blank CD or DVD.  Using something that Microsoft calls their Live File System, you can create or format a blank disk that will then allow you to use that disk (while it is in your disc drive) just like you would use a floppy disk or USB flash drive.  You can copy files to and from the disk, erase files you no longer need, etc.  All without “burning” files like you might be used to, just drag and drop right from Windows Explorer or whatever your favorite file manager might be.

There are some caveats with this, it appears that creating these disks is something you can do on Windows 7 machines only.  However, once created, they can be read on Windows versions going back to Windows XP and in some cases even Windows 98.  There is a URL at the bottom of the article that will take you to a Microsoft page with more information.  In addition, the reason I so far have only said CD, DVD and disk without getting specific is because you can create this kind of disk on standard writable media (-R) as well as re-writable media (-RW) meaning the list of disks you can format for mobile data storage starts to get kinda long, like so: CD-R, CD+R, CD-RW, DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-RW, DVD+RW, or DVD-RAM.

The process for setting up a disk for this kind of use is quick and easy, you simply insert your blank disk into your drive and wait a second.  If you have autoplay enabled, you know where your CD’s that you insert start automatically, you will get a window that pops up asking you how you want to use the disc, like a USB flash drive, or with a CD/DVD player (like a normal writer).  If you don’t have autoplay enabled, simply open Windows Explorer or My Computer and locate your CD or DVD drive.  Double click on it and you should receive the same window asking you how you want to use the disk.

Once you see the window, make sure that use “Like a USB flash drive” is selected and then press next. You will then get a message that the disk is being formatted.  Just wait and watch, and after a minute or two it should be complete and will disappear.  Once the formatting windows goes away you are done and ready.  You should now be able to drag and drop files to and from the disk, delete any that you want to, and manner of good stuff like that.  I hope you find this useful!

Get more information at Microsoft’s site