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  • November 24, 2020

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  • April 30, 2018

Last weekend, my two oldest kids and I attended the 2018 Linuxfest Northwest conference in Bellingham, WA. The best way I would describe the experience was that I worked at reducing the size of my Third Order Ignorance. Here is a brief summary of the talks I attended and the things I learned that I didn’t know that I didn’t know.

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  • January 19, 2017

My wife and I got several cooking appliances this holiday season. We got an amazing smoker that I will likely write about later; a multi-purpose Cuisinart thing to replace our electric griddle, waffle iron and George Foreman grill; and an Instant Pot to replace our crockpot, pressure cooker and rice maker. Unless you have been under a rock, the internet has been buzzing about the Instant Pot, for good reason. Last night we made a clam chowder so good, I felt like I had to share it. We made up the recipe, but I had a lot of help. First, we found the following recipes on the internet.

Instant Pot New England Clam Chowder
Pressure Cooker Recipe: New England Clam Chowder
New England Clam Chowder In Pressure Cooker Recipe
New England Clam Chowder (Pressure Cooker)
Lower Carb New England-Style Clam Chowder
Light Low-Carb New England Clam Chowder Recipe
Creamy Paleo Clam Chowder

I even found a Ketogenic Diet Pressure Cooker Recipes cookbook that I plan to order. After that, I took my favorite ingredients from all of the above, together with advice gleaned from friends who have Instant Pots, Keto and Instant Pot groups on Facebook and of course, /r/ketorecipes and improvised the rest.

Kelly’s Keto Klam Kachow-der

I had to throw the family name in there because even accidentally being associated with a hate group is offensive and we can’t have that. That’s four K’s not 3. Besides, this recipe turned out so good it can only improve the family name.


  • 1 lbs Bacon cut crosswise into pieces
  • 1 medium Onion chopped
  • 2 stalks Celery chopped
  • 1 head Cauliflower cut into florets
  • 3 10oz cans of Fancy Whole Baby Clams
  • 1 can Mushroom Pieces strained
  • 2 cans Chicken Stock (about 3 cups)
  • 1 tsp Ground Thyme
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Old Bay Seafood Seasoning
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 8oz Cream Cheese softened
  • 1/2 stick Butter melted
  • 2 cups Heavy Cream


  • Saute Bacon in non-stick pan
  • Add Onions and stir occasionally until Bacon is cooked and Onions are caramelized
  • Empty the contents of the pan into the Instant Po
  • Deglaze the pan with the juice from the canned clams and pour into Instant Pot

    This is not how I did it, but how I will do it again. I had tried to saute the Bacon and Onions in the Instant Pot but the bottom was getting crusty and it didn’t seem to get hot enough to caramelize the onions. I remembered being told that the Instant Pot might not come to pressure if the bottom was scorched so I transferred it to a non-stick pan and my wife finished frying it up while I deglazed the Instant Pot on Saute with the Clam juice.

  • Add Clams, Mushrooms, Celery and Cauliflower (should fill the Instant Pot 2/3 to 3/4 full, stirring will distribute the Bacon, Clams and Mushrooms among the florets and settle the contents a bit in case you are worried)
  • Add Chicken Stock (This should bring the water level upto about the level of the ingredients)
  • Close lid, press the Soup button and select Low Pressure (it should default to 30 minutes)
  • When done, do a Quick Release (which took 4 minutes), add remaining ingredients, stir thoroughly and serve
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  • July 11, 2015

I just finished my first week as a full stack web developer. It was awesome, mostly because of the great people I get to work with, but also because there were so many new things to learn. Developing on a Mac, using Git and Github for source control, PivotalTracker for scrum management, Slack for chatting with everyone whether they are in the office or not, oh yeah and Google Apps for everything else. Aside from the technology change there is also a culture change. Where at Microsoft, I worked in my own private office and everyone used email to communicate with everyone, even if they were in the office next door. Here, the whole company is in one big room and so you just look up and chat with whoever or maybe they slide their chair (or roll their yoga ball for the younger employees) over and work in a spontaneous group. So what did I learn in my first week?

  • I learned many keyboard shortcuts for Gmail, Atom & iTerm.
  • I learned tons of markdown and the differences in how it is parsed and displayed in Atom and on Github.
  • I learned how to archive repos from Github and connect to file servers on Macs.
  • I learned how to identify merged branches on Git.
  • I learned how to identify unmerged branches on Git and create bundles of all the changes in a branch.
  • I learned how to do Pull Requests and Code Reviews on Github.
  • I learned where the /etc/hosts file is on Windows and why I’d want to use it.
  • Finally, I learned about the .gitattributes file, but that deserves its own post.
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  • February 3, 2015

The following are two things you can try when Windows Update fails with a mysterious error such as 0x80240004

Fix #1 – Rename software distribution folder.

  1. Go to the MoGo or the Start Menu and find cmd -> right click on cmd -> Run as administrator and run the following command:
  2. net stop wuauserv

  3. Click Run, type: %windir% and press Enter.
  4. In the opened window, rename the folder SoftwareDistribution to SoftwareDistributionold.123 Close the window.
  5. Go back to the cmd window and run the following command:
  6. net start wuauserv

  7. Now perform the windows update and check the issue, if the issue persists please follow the below,

Fix #2 – Hack the registry

  1. Go to the MoGo or the Start Menu and find regedit.exe and run it
  2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Polocies\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\AU
  3. Change the value of UseWUServer from 1 to 0.
  4. Now perform the windows update and hopefully it will work.

We had an awesome week out at Mayfield Lake. We managed to record some of the action and I used MovieMaker to put together a summary video. A good time was had by all and we plan on making this an annual event.

To great videos from Microsoft that demonstrate a future where information is at your finger tips.

And just in case you are inclined to be skeptical, consider a similar video from 1993

Ahhhhh, I spent thrity minutes scratching my head over this before a a coworker pointed out an easy solution my problem. Since most of my time was spent searching the web for a possible solution without finding any, I decided to post this entry in hopes that a search engine or two might pick it up and help someone else who doesn’t have awesome coworkers walk past their office on a regular basis.

I just used Visual Studio 2010 to create an ATL project and added an object to it and added a method to the object. This is all the stuff you see on stage at every PDC. CodeProject has a tutorial very similar to what I did. Anyway I write a quick 2 line test.js file that uses ActiveXObject to create it and call the method and I get the following error (0x800A01AD).

test.js(1, 1) Microsoft JScript runtime error: Automation server can’t create object

So what did I do wrong. Turns out, nothing except trying to run the test.js file from a 64 bit command console. All I had to do to get it working the way I expected was launch the 32 bit command console (commonly found at C:\Windows\SysWOW64\cmd.exe) and run it from there.

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  • December 3, 2010

Another cool video on YouTube. This one contains some very innovative use of text.