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Life is too short for negativity.
Architect, former CTO, consultant, author, editor, and industry/web standards expert that still enjoys writing code.
Opinions are mine alone.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

3 min read

Android work profiles: interesting idea, horrible experience

 NOTE: Cutting and pasting between Android Work Profiles and Personal Profiles is apparently a known issue that will be fixed in a future release. It's still annoying as hell though,

I missed a meeting this morning because Android Work Profiles don't quite work the way I expected. The meeting invite was in my Outlook calendar. When I tapped on the URL for the meeting nothing happened - no errors, no pop-ups, nothing. I tried tapping again and once again, nothing happened.

After looking closer at the meeting URL I realized the meeting was using an app called Doxy. Doxy is an app to enable telemedicine. Normally the URL would either prompt me to install the Doxy app or simply pop the app open if I had previously installed it (I hate installing apps because apps are destroying the web).Since the source of the URL came from an Android Work Profile app (Outlook, in this case) it apparently could only be opened by another Android Work Profile app. Since there is no Android Work Profile version of the Doxy app nothing happened. Ok, I figured I could manually copy the URL out of Outlook and paste it into the Doxy app. Nope. Copying the URL worked fine but the minute I switched to my Personal Profile to access Doxy I also unknowingly switched to the Personal Profile version of the Android clipboard - meaning the data I had copied (the meeting URL) wasn't available to paste into Doxy.

Now I'm not sure if this is an issue with how my employer configured Android Work Profiles or if this is simply how they work. Either way it's a terribly unfriendy user experience, especially for someone like me who uses Outlook for both business and personal appointments. This feels like a major step backwards since I now need to use two separate calendars for my appointments. Ugh. So much for having an all-up view of my appointments. 

The other issue was that the Android Work Profile enables my employer to force me to use Edge as my default browser (I prefer Brave for obvious reasons). This means my bookmarks and other resources are no longer available. I'll keep digging and see if there is an alternative approach that might make Android Work Profiles easier to use.

Love Theory


Dealing with Keyvault errors due to an expired refresh token

1 min read

I haven't been able to find a truly simple guide to fixing this issue so I'm posting my own:

  1. Ensure you have the Azure Command Line installed
  2. Login using the account you're trying to use to access KeyVault (verify this in Visual Studio under Tools...Options..Azure Service Authentication - ensure the cloud account is the one you need)
    az login
  3. After successfully logging in reboot the machine.

Your KeyVault issue should be fixed at this point.


HTTP Status Codes Decision Tree

1 min read

Putting this here for future reference.


2 min read

Me: Hey God.
God: Hello.....
Me: I'm falling apart. Can you put me back together?
God: I would rather not.
Me: Why?
God: Because you aren't a puzzle.
Me: What about all of the pieces of my life that are falling down onto the ground?
God: Let them stay there for a while. They fell off for a reason. Take some time and decide if you need any of those pieces back.
Me: You don't understand! I'm breaking down!
God: No - you don't understand. You are breaking through. What you are feeling are just growing pains. You are shedding the things and the people in your life that are holding you back. You aren't falling apart. You are falling into place. Relax. Take some deep breaths and allow those things you don't need anymore to fall off of you. Quit holding onto the pieces that don't fit you anymore. Let them fall off. Let them go.
Me: Once I start doing that, what will be left of me?
God: Only the very best pieces of you.
Me: I'm scared of changing.
God: I keep telling you - YOU AREN'T CHANGING!! YOU ARE BECOMING!
Me: Becoming who?
God: Becoming who I created you to be! A person of light and love and charity and hope and courage and joy and mercy and grace and compassion. I made you for more than the shallow pieces you have decided to adorn yourself with that you cling to with such greed and fear. Let those things fall off of you. I love you! Don't change! ... Become! Become! Become who I made you to be. I'm going to keep telling you this until you remember it.
Me: There goes another piece.
God: Yep. Let it be.
Me: So ... I'm not broken?
God: Of course Not! - but you are breaking like the dawn. It's a new day. Become!!!
~Author Unknown

Drinking with Steven Soderbergh

1 min read


Last night Central Cinema hosted a Singani brandy tasting party with director Steven Soderbergh. It was a fun night, hosted by his beautiful daughter.

I never tried a Singani brandy before - apparently it's only made in a 20k acre area of Bolivia.  Absolutely delicious.  Very flowery and aromatic with a sweet, fruity taste.

I had a quick chat with Steven Soderbergh and told him that I really liked Kafka. He laughed and yelled "so YOU'RE the guy". He was surprisingly down to earth and hung out with anyone that wanted to talk or have a drink with him. Not all at all what I expected a successful Hollywood director to act like.  

He briefly joked about showing Contagion given the panic over coronavirus. He nicely thanked the audience for coming out despite the ongoing scares about coronavirus.

The film he chose to show was a remastered version of Bubble. Interesting film. Many of the people in it reminded me of the characters I grew up with in Western PA.

Monday, January 27, 2020

1 min read

You never really own anything you buy digitally

Electronic Arts’ iOS Tetris games will not only be disappearing from the App Store on April 21, but the games themselves will no longer be playable on iPhones and iPads—even if you paid for them.  This is why I still buy CDs and physical books from artists and authors I love.

Inspiring quote from a great book

"In these great crises of life, man is strong only as he is strong from within, and the more he depends on himself the stronger will he become, and the more able will he be to help others in the hour of their need."



Many software engineering problems are never solved.

They're simply moved to another platform and renamed. DLL Hell is still a very real problem - now it's called Nuget.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

2 min read

The Brilliance of John Carpenter

If you are a film buff you should be reading Cinephelia & Beyond. C&B is a wonderful website with deep analysis on films of all genres. The articles are well-written and frequently feature additional bonuses such as scripts, behind-the-scenes featurettes, director's notes and much more.  This month they have a great article on one of my favorite filmakers - John Carpenter. John Carpenter may be best known for making the original Halloween but he's also made some wonderful comedies and a remake that far surpasses the original.  Unfortunately John Carpenter also made a few less than stellar films later in his career. I think he got burned out by the Hollywood system and decided to just retire. He began touring a few years ago to promote his music but I didn't get the chance to see him perform.

The article features a link to a great documentary on John Carpenter and his films. I've never seen it before - it's definitely worth a watch if you loved any of his films.

Burn the Ships


"Step into a new day
We can rise up from the dust and walk away
We can dance upon our heartache,
So light a match,
leave the past,
burn the ships
And don't you look back"

Remembering the SOPA Blackout from 8 Years Ago

Thanks Aaron.

APIs are not copyrightable

Catching up with the news - apparently Red Hat and IBM jointly filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court on the "Google vs. Oracle" case. The amicus brief argues (correctly) that APIs cannot be copyrighted. Oracle is claiming a copyright on Java APIs and Google is infringing on these copyrights. Problems started back when the the Android OS was initially developed. Google wrote its own version of Java for Android. Google's Java implementation used the same names, organization, and functionality as the standard Java APIs - this enabled Java developers to ramp up quickly on Android OS. I'd be surprised if Oracle won their case, especially since Oracle has their own implementation of Amazon's S3 API.
Oracle is the biggest law firm in silicon valley. Strangely, they seem to have a software side business.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

1 min read

Reply all is an anti-pattern

Looks like email armageddon is underway once again. Why people can't simply click "ignore" or create a rule to delete out of control company wide spam is beyond me.  My deleted folder is being filled with messages, most of which state "please remove me from this list" and "don't reply all".
At least my rules are working :)