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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here. December 2005 Entries
GWB error workaround.
Whatever was causing my posting problem... this is a workaround for it. If you are getting a “specified cast invalid” error when you try to post, and there's no apparent reason for it... try doing this: Make a copy (Ctrl+C is fine) of your post. Save a post with just a couple words in it. Go in to the Admin screen and edit that post. Paste in the previous post that would not submit. Save your post. Voila! This happens to me more times than I care to recall. So far, my workaround has worked ......

Posted On Friday, December 30, 2005 9:10 PM

The Lion, The Witch, The Wardrobe & The Review
Saw Narnia tonight. Kind of a funny story behind that. My mom wanted to take all the grandkids a few weeks ago but read a bad review of it (somewhere... not sure where since most reviews I saw were pretty good) and decided it wasnt a good idea. I could write volumes about my relationship with my mother, but lets face it... it aint that kind of blog. Anyway... the short version of the review follows: it was spectacular. (I was gonna write that it was F'n Spectacular, but opted not too... it is a kids ......

Posted On Friday, December 30, 2005 9:05 PM

for some reason my narnia review wont post... I keep getting “specified cast invalid” messages.

Posted On Friday, December 30, 2005 9:04 PM

wow it sure gets quiet here this time of year....

I am the ONLY person from my team actually at work today. The office is closing at 3:00pm for New Year's Eve (observed) and I'm not even sure I'll make it that long. :)

This place is a graveyard.

Posted On Friday, December 30, 2005 8:13 AM

My 2006 Arcade Wishlist...
I'm looking to acquire the following games. I'm not in a big hurry and obviously can't buy everything all at once anyway, but here goes... * D&D Shadow Over Mystara (original cab w/ sideart) * D&D Tower Of Doom (original cab w/ sideart) Dungeons & Dragons Pinball Game (Bally?) Golden Axe * Joust Galaga / MS Pac combo Karate Champ (or) Yie Ar Kung Fu Pole Position (or another racing game) A nice quality JAMMA cabinet with a good monitor so I can swap in/out other games. (I may end up building the ......

Posted On Thursday, December 29, 2005 12:48 PM

Unsurprisingly, it's junk...
So the standup arcade machine I was drooling over in a previous post is apparently complete crap... (and available exclusively at Target, I might add. Go figure.) What's wrong with it? The games are all running in emulation, badly. No original ROMs. It's like a crappy MAME knockoff without the ability to add new stuff. The monitor is TINY. As in, TEENY TINY. As in.... 13 INCHES (as in, damn that's tiny!) The monitor is NOT, in fact, a monitor at all... but a cheap (VERY CHEAP) color tv bolted into ......

Posted On Thursday, December 29, 2005 11:00 AM

Mac OSX updates disable powerbook memory slots

File this one under OOOPS!!

I'm just glad I don't own a powerbook.

Posted On Wednesday, December 28, 2005 12:17 PM

Installation Fun w/ InstallShield and ASP.NET (1.1 & 2.0)
The Problem: Recently, I ran across a situation where we have an ASP.NET 1.1 app that we were installing onto a machine with the 2.0 .NET Framework already installed. When the virtual directory was created by the install, all the "non-application specific" file extensions were mapped to the 2.0 isapi.dll file. However, the "application specific" ones were mapped to the 1.1 isapi.dll. So, when I tried to hit the site the first time, a lot of stuff was screwed up. Going into IIS and remapping everything ......

Posted On Wednesday, December 28, 2005 6:29 AM

Adventures in C#, cont...
Someone at work noticed I was toting around a C# book lately and asked me “you're a VB guy, why the hell would you want to learn C#?” Before I could answer, he continued... “case sensitive? ughh... semi-colons? no support for edit and continue? no constant compilation? etc...” (he went on a for a couple minutes) To me, the answer was obvious. I'm learning C# for the same reason I learned VB.NET. Because I can. Because I don't want to limit myself to knowing a single language. ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 27, 2005 6:58 AM

somewhere, Cindy Lu Hoo is singing.
Normally, I'm a bit of a sourpuss around Christmas time and most people (that know me) know it's not exactly my favorite time of the year. In fact, I think the whole holiday season is grossly overhyped and has pretty much lost any relationship to the original meaning. I guess you could even say I'm a bit of a Grinch. (For the record, I'm definitely NOT a Scrooge.) So I approached this year's Christmas with the same measure of reluctance and dread as I always do. I figured it would be just like all ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 27, 2005 6:22 AM

in memory of Kong...

Rest in Peace Kong... 2005

Click for full size picture.

Posted On Friday, December 23, 2005 1:31 PM

Google explains the AOL deal

Google clarifies the AOL deal, and stomps on some rumors and speculation:

My favorite quote:  There will not be crazy, flashy, graphical doodads flying and popping up all over the Google site. Ever.

Good Google, let's all hope not.

Posted On Friday, December 23, 2005 8:02 AM

INETA news...
INETA NorAm Membership Division Announces: New Membership Manager - NC, SC Chris Williams Chris takes over the Membership Manager duties that have been the responsibility of Connie Marthinsen ( We thank Connie for her years of volunteer service to INETA. Connie has for the last four years worked with TRINUG and INETA. She says that her volunteer work with INETA has been a “tremendous experience” for her. Connie says “I am so impressed with the level of commitment and hard ......

Posted On Thursday, December 22, 2005 11:27 AM

cool roguelike game written in flash
check it out

Posted On Tuesday, December 20, 2005 12:33 PM

Great Googly Moogly
Ok ok, so I haven't run the updater for D&D Online in a while, but damn... over a billion items?!? Doesn't look like I'll be playing tonight.

Posted On Friday, December 16, 2005 10:34 PM

White Wolf website
Apparently the White Wolf (RPG Company) website was recently hacked. I received an email from them a couple days ago letting me know that my personal information had been compromised (although supposedly no Credit Card data was acquired.) They said the hackers were extorting them for a payoff, which they refuse to pay, so they wanted me to know that I might want to change my password if I use the same one anywhere else. Fair enough. Apparently the hackers have decided to try turning up the heat a ......

Posted On Friday, December 16, 2005 8:49 PM

King Kong (with some spoily)
I just got back from seeing King Kong tonight, and I wanted to write this while it was still fresh in my mind. Let me start by saying WOW, this is a damn good movie. It's also a damn long movie, as in 3 hours and 10 minutes. By the time you get your popcorn, sit down, hang out for 10 minutes, watch the previews and commercials and then the movie, you've spent 4 HOURS in the theatre. The movie never drags. There isn't much action in the beginning (as in none at all), but they take the time to setup ......

Posted On Friday, December 16, 2005 8:33 PM

causing trouble wherever I go...
There's this guy (a trainer) who frequents this newsgroup I read. Recently, he posted a link to the newsgroup of a fairly disturbing video (circulated courtesy of PETA) of some small animals (cats) getting severely mistreated by some Chinese men of the food service persuasion. The men were enjoying themselves a bit too much and I concede it was pretty gruesome. The fact is though, cats and dogs are sometimes treated in the same manner over there as chickens are here in the US. Along with the link ......

Posted On Friday, December 16, 2005 11:26 AM

Good Clean Geeky Fun (for the aggregated page)
I initially posted this to the main page, but decided to spare you all...

If you're curious, clicky the linky...

Posted On Tuesday, December 13, 2005 4:16 PM

good clean geeky fun
edit: apparently they moved the video... again. hehehe... I love this ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 13, 2005 4:10 PM

I have a new hero...
Just for the record... Charles Petzold is a freakin' genius! (...but you already knew that, didn't you?) I'm still working my way through his Programming In The Key Of C# (I read it at lunchtime and at night before I crash) and I swear to you, I literally learn something new almost every time I pick it up. Not just something new about C#, mind you, but a little more of the Petzold way of programming... regardless of the language you choose. I'm talking about stuff that's so painfully obvious, after ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 13, 2005 10:09 AM

Those crafty frenchmen...
Now that (hopefully) everyone has caught on to the Nigerian Bank Scam, we have new scammers on the horizon. Those clever clever Frenchmen! I recently received this email from a young lady in France: Dear sir,I'm glad to write you this message to ask you for help because i need a sponsor for video games because my husband is manadging some teams of "Counter-Strike" video game and he needs some sponsors for that please if you can help me to help him i'll be really thankfull thank you so much i'm waiting ......

Posted On Tuesday, December 13, 2005 7:45 AM

mixing ASP.NET 1.1 and 2.0
The question: If I have an ASP.NET 1.1 app that has placeholders for user controls, and I want to write some new user controls for ASP.NET 2.0, will I be able to use them in my app? I know I can mix/match classic ASP and ASP.NET, but I don't think I can mix/match .NET versions. Knowing that 2.0 stuff won't run on the 1.1 framework, let's look at the options. Do I... A. upgrade (and recompile) my app to 2005 (not a small task by any stretch) and then starting adding new stuff? B. install the 2.0 framework, ......

Posted On Monday, December 12, 2005 8:29 AM

target / wachovia final update
A few of you have emailed or IM'ed me looking for an update, so here it is... Wachovia credited my account, and they are fighting Target on my behalf. This is remarkable for several reasons. 1. Normally I hate Wachovia (pronounced WalkAllOverYa), but they really came through this time. They credited my account the money and are fighting with Target to sort it all out. Given their reputation, I was astonished. A couple lessons were learned from this... A. deal with someone who actually has the authority ......

Posted On Monday, December 12, 2005 8:13 AM

new blog

I've added a new blog to my list of regular reading...

This guy recently added a cool plug in for VS2005. Pretty cool stuff.

Posted On Monday, December 12, 2005 7:36 AM

Hot diddly damn!
It's about time!! :)

Big thank you to Jeff & Co for adding paging functionality to the main GWB site!!! Happy Holidays everyone!

Posted On Saturday, December 10, 2005 12:34 PM

C# game dev

New series of C# game dev webcasts coming up in January:

I probably won't catch them when they air, but I'm sure they'll be available on demand.

Posted On Friday, December 9, 2005 11:19 AM

oh man I really want one of these
www.mybiggames.comA Full Size, Stand Up Arcade Machine for your home! BigGames™ Home Video Arcades are real arcade machines for the Home.Each unit plays 12 of the original arcade versions of the most popular Midway™ games including: Defender™, Defender II™, Robotron™, Joust™, Bubbles™, Splat™, Sinistar™, Rampage™, Rootbeer Tapper™, Wizard of Wor™, Timber™, and Satan's Hollow™. The unit stands 62” tall and has ......

Posted On Thursday, December 8, 2005 8:46 AM

the Target saga continues...

updates at the bottom of the post.

Posted On Tuesday, December 6, 2005 11:04 AM

criminal behavior
If it's not against the law, it ought to be... I absolutely hate Target, and I'm not sure that HATE is even a strong enough word to convey how I truly feel... Last night, I did some Christmas shopping at Target. I don't go there often, but without fail, every time I go they end up overcharging me for something. Last night was no exception, and one of the items I purchased ($30) rang up as $50. Normally, I always watch them scan each item, and stop them when it happens... but last night I got distracted ......

Posted On Saturday, December 3, 2005 12:00 PM

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