Category: Reference

Test data for FULLTEXT searching

MySQL’s FULLTEXT search feature works best when it’s used on a large corpus of text. That is, for best results you need many rows. When the text corpus is too small, full text searching often returns strange results: the indexing process tries to work out common words. If the amount of text being indexed is too small, some words that… Read more →

Set up gmail to use a new email account

You can set up your gmail account to send and receive mail using other email accounts. This is convenient, because you don’t have to remember to log in to your other accounts to get that email.  You can, of course, still receive and send email with your original gmail account. This video tutorial explains how to set up gmail to… Read more →

Insults

I thought William Shakespeare was the master of insults. “In civility thou seem’st so empty,” for example, from As you like it. But now Randall Munroe, the author of XKCD, is catching up with his insults about code quality. Read more →

DataTables.net — a nice way to display lots of data in a web page.

Lately I’ve been doing some work with Allan Jardine’s DataTables jQuery plugin. You know the SNL line saying, “if it’s not Scottish, it’s crap!” This software does nothing to disprove that saying. It’s excellent. Datatables does a great, and simple, job of transforming plain old html data tables into sortable and searchable marvels. It also supports Ajax callbacks, allowing it to handle very… Read more →

W3Schools? Expert Sex Change?

If you do any software development, you probably use the Google search engine to look up lots of details. Have you ever had to pick through your search results to avoid websites whose search engine optimization is better than their information? I’m looking at you, W3 Schools and Experts – Exchange! There’s a free Chrome plugin called W3SchoolsHider. Spetnik Solutions in St.… Read more →

RabbitMQ Message Queuing on FreeBSD

RabbitMQ is a message queue system. It lets computer programs send each other work to do, without waiting for them to do it. I’ve been getting this working on the open-source FreeBSD unix-like system. These are notes on getting started. This writeup was helpful to me. Install it and get it working As with any complex server software, there are… Read more →

Battery costs and the smart grid

The GM company recently disclosed, to their vendor’s dismay, that they can buy electric-vehicle batteries for their new Bolt EV for US$145 per kilowatt hour. It’s rare enough to find costs for these batteries that it’s worth doing a scratchpad computation of what the payback might look like for home electric use. My home electricity supplier (National Grid) charges separately for… Read more →