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Name Marco Von Ballmoos
Member since
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Home page http://earthli.com/users/marco
Description

The (only) developer at earthli.com.

Contents

2286 Articles
93 Comments

4 days Ago

Azure Linked Accounts and SSH Keys

Published on in Programming

Azure DevOps allows you to link multiple accounts.

Our concrete use case was:

  • User U1 was registered with an Azure DevOps organization O1
  • Microsoft did some internal management and gave our partner account a new organization O2, complete with new accounts for all users. Now I have user U2 as well, registered with O2.
  • U2 was unable to take tests to qualify for partner benefits, so I had to use U1 but link the accounts so that those test results accrued to O2 as well as O1.
  • We want to start... [More]

Using Git efficiently: SmartGit + BeyondCompare

Published on in Programming

I’ve written about using SmartGit (SG) before[1][2] and I still strongly recommend that developers who manage projects use a UI for Git.

If you’re just developing a single issue at a time and can branch, commit changes and make pull requests with your IDE tools, then more power to you. For this kind of limited workflow, you can get away with a limited tool-set without too big of a safety or efficiency penalty.

However, if you need an overview or need to more management, then you’re going to... [More]

Multi-language web sites

Published on in Technology

Why are multi-language web sites so hard to make? Even large companies like Microsoft, Google and Apple regularly send content with mixed-language content.

This is probably due to several factors:

  1. Large web sites pull data for myriad sources, including CDNs and caching services. Each source needs to respect the requested language, If a source doesn’t have support for a requested language, then just that piece of content will be delivered in the fallback format.
  2. Any proxies have to pass the... [More]

Visual Studio 2019 Survey

Published on in Programming

Visual Studio 2019 (VS) asked me this morning if I was interested in taking a survey to convey my level of satisfaction with the IDE.

VS displays the survey in an embedded window using IE11.[1] I captured the screen of the first thing I saw when I agreed to take the survey.

 Visual Studio 2019 Survey error

I know it’s the SurveyMonkey script that’s failing, but it’s still not an auspicious start.


[1] I’d just upgraded to Windows 10 build 1903, which includes IE 11.418.18362.0. I can’t imagine that they didn’t test this... [More]

MasterCard SecureCode web dialog

Published on in Design

I just can’t believe that this gruesome thing is still a thing.[1] In an age where we are supposed to have been sensitized to phishing sites, this thing is still an integral part of the online credit-card purchasing chain. It is generally called up with a completely different URL than the store where you started and it looks terrible and untrustworthy.

 SecureCode Dialog

It’s probably a combination of:

  1. not being able to change a running system because people are used to it now
  2. not being able to change a running... [More]

Strava Data-caching

Published on in Sports

Strava makes for strange conversations: I’ve had discussions with nearly non-technical cycling colleagues about “eventual consistency” and caching and shared servers and data regions. It’s a funny old world.

In the two shots below, Strava is telling me that I got my second-best time[1] but the time for each activity is clearly lower than the time that it’s indicating as a PR. Even after recalculation, Strava is adamant. I’m not sure what could cause this as it’s pretty basic math. Maybe the... [More]

Book recommendations from Kindle

Published on in Books & Movies

My Kindle’s home screen has not, to date, recommended anything that would interest me in the least.

Most of the books look like something I would be leery of setting on fire for fear of toxic smoke.

Case in point:

 Kindle Home Screen

This one has the tag line of “Mystery solving cats. A humorous who done it with heart.”

Anyone who knows me will not be surprised to hear that I noticed the missing hyphen in “Mystery solving cats” immediately.

After that, I crashed into the next sentence, assuming that they’d... [More]

2 weeks Ago

Going along to get along

Published on in Quotes

“[…] getting along in society includes some recognition of not being the worst person you can be even though you have a right to do so.”

On successfully navigating tricky grammatical seas

Published on in Quotes

“When I look at people that I would like to feel have been a mentor or an inspiring kind of archetype of what I’d love to see my career eventually be mentioned as a footnote for in the same paragraph, it would be, like, Bowie.”
Mark Liberman on November 3, 2005 (Language Log)

Institutionalized Poverty

Published on in Quotes

“The cause of poverty is not that we’re unable to satisfy the needs of the poor, it’s that we’re unable to satisfy the greed of the rich.”
Unknown

Incuriosity Killed the Human

Published on in Quotes

“You barely have to stir or incommode yourself to find things out. The only reason people do not know much is because they do not care to know. They are incurious. Incuriosity is the oddest… most foolish failing there is,”

3 weeks Ago

Digging Up Mother by Doug Stanhope (2016) (read in 2019)

Published on in Books & Movies

Disclaimer: these are notes I took while reading this book. They include citations I found interesting or enlightening or particularly well-written. In some cases, I’ve pointed out which of these applies to which citation; in others, I have not. Any benefit you gain from reading these notes is purely incidental to the purpose they serve of reminding me what I once read. Please see Wikipedia for a summary if I’ve failed to provide one sufficient for your purposes. If my notes serve to trigger an... [More]

1 month Ago

The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick (1962) (read in 2019)

Published on in Books & Movies

Disclaimer: these are notes I took while reading this book. They include citations I found interesting or enlightening or particularly well-written. In some cases, I’ve pointed out which of these applies to which citation; in others, I have not. Any benefit you gain from reading these notes is purely incidental to the purpose they serve of reminding me what I once read. Please see Wikipedia for a summary if I’ve failed to provide one sufficient for your purposes. If my notes serve to trigger an... [More]

Le Transperceneige by Jacques Lob and ...rc Rochette (1982; fr) (read in 2019)

Published on in Books & Movies

Disclaimer: these are notes I took while reading this book. They include citations I found interesting or enlightening or particularly well-written. In some cases, I’ve pointed out which of these applies to which citation; in others, I have not. Any benefit you gain from reading these notes is purely incidental to the purpose they serve of reminding me what I once read. Please see Wikipedia for a summary if I’ve failed to provide one sufficient for your purposes. If my notes serve to trigger an... [More]