Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

How to encode accents in an ascii sql file


Sometimes when you want to send a sql file to someone and it contains accents things go … bad.
To circumvent this in oracle sql files you can escape these with compose(unistr(‘CHARACTER + ACCENT’)).
This way your sql file remains ascii encoded and accents don’t go the way of the dodo.

-- The most common combining characters in ANSI are:
-- U+0300: grave accent (`)
-- U+0301: acute accent (´)
-- U+0302: circumflex accent(^)
-- U+0303: tilde (~)
-- U+0308: umlaut (¨)

compose(unistr('a\0300')) as "grave accent",
compose(unistr('a\0301')) as "acute accent",
compose(unistr('a\0302')) as "circumflex accent",
compose(unistr('a\0303')) as "tilde",
compose(unistr('a\0308')) as "umlaut"

Internet Explorer Platform Preview randomness is biased


After installing Internet Explorer Platform Preview 1.9.7745.6019 the first thing I did was check out its javascript performance on my own scripts. It turns out to have a very wierd output for Math.random. Test your browsers Math.random() function and see for yourself.

Update: This seems to be fixed in Explorer Platform Preview 1.9.7766.6000.

2M08 Silverlight


A hands-on workshop about Silverlight 2.0.

The many MacBooks that are available are probably set up for the Air session this afternoon. Our speaker informs us "We wont be using those", quickly followed by "Silverlight is a cross platform …".

Blend has loads of panels and properties. Nesting controls is possible. You can have a video inside a button.

Changes in Blend are detected in Visual studio. It helps to do a rebuild in Blend to make shure Visual studio isn’t working on an old version. Design view isn’t fully supported there yet. Double clicking on a button doesn’t get you a onClick handler yet.

Silverlight uses layout managers like Flex. Buttons have a content property which enables design and programming to be done separately. You can create some kind of color palette of Brush Resources in Blend which translates to SolidColorBrush elements in XAML. Visual studio has intellisence for XAML which makes it easier to type in there than in Blend. Fullscreen is supported but must be initiated by the user. Controls have a background and a border while other elements have a fill and a stroke. Blend has some glitches when setting properties on multiple controls. Switching to XAML code is the normal reaction to that. Not shure how designers will react to that. Hope these things are fixed when it goes out of beta.

The presentation was quite good, but I’m not sure weather I’m going to dump flash for this.

Parsing plist files in asp with Microsoft.XMLDOM


Plist files are more and more ubiquitous. Apple uses them for its configuration files and we use them to describe exercise content. They aren’t very pleasant to read for humans, but that doesn’t mean computers dislike reading them. So I wrote a little javascript to parse a plist file to an object. Hope you like it.


Google reader in Opera 9.5


Temporarily fixing google reader for Opera 9.5 requires following code:

#entries {
    min-height: 500px;

To do this go to Site Preferences > Display > My style sheet.

Update: Google seems to have fixed it.



Silverlight 1.0 is released and it doesn’t work on Mac OS prior to version 10.4.8, Linux, Windows 2000 and the Opera browser.

Flash Player 9 reached 90% penetration. Maybe thanks to being truly cross platform?

The iPod touch has a multi touch interface, wifi, iTunes and Safari. I wonder if it also lets you share your music for 3 days?

Opera 9.5 alpha has been released. It is blazingly fast and has a full-text search feature of your history.

Search was added to Google Reader. This also makes it impossible to use with Opera 9.5 alpha.

Multi-Mania 2007


I’m really looking forward to Multi-Mania tomorrow. See you there!

Removing rows in Excel


Today I had to remove all rows in an excel sheet containing #N/A in the third cell. The only catch is that there are thousands and thousands of these rows and I need to be able to repeat this action.


MsSql lacks describe statement


Describe, or desc in short, is one of the most valuable commands when trying to understand a database structure. MsSql lacks this feature so you have to write it yourself.


Hello world!


Hi, I’m Kristof Neirynck, application developer at Indie Group and this is my blog.