Slow "Save As" in Microsoft Office Applicaitons

It seems we've been having a problem a lot lately with slow saves when choosing "Save As" in Microsoft Word and Excel.

This post is mainly a place to keep track of some of the ideas I've come across. There is a Microsoft KB article for example

If the slowness comes when choosing a different drive it is likely the matter of a having a disconnected network drive that needs to be removed.

Google's robots.txt tool

Without realizing it was new I spent some time with Google's robots.txt tool. All and all a very nice new addition to the Google suite. I also got around to getting the sitemap module for Drupal so now it might show something in their cache that is newer than last July.

There is also a good comment that discusses why Google is not looking to support the crawl-delay directive that some other search engines support.

Silly click-wrap agreements

Each winter those of us in the United States get to spend some quality time with a pencil and paper, or the computer figuring out if we paid the government of the United States enough last year. Living in Nevada I no-longer must figure the state's portion as it is already paid or the kind folks from California and the other 48 states come to our desert oasis to pay them in exchange for the microscopic chance of cashing in and going to live on the beach.
Silly clickwrap agreement
Anyway, I downloaded the latest version of Turbo Tax and it comes with a click-wrap license agreement - not at all unusual in this day and age. What is unusual are the terms. In order to use the software, I am supposed to agree that I have "read and printed" a copy of the agreement. Both in the past tense. Read. Printed. The only problem is at this point in the program there is no possibility of printing the License agreement.

All of this is enough to make one wonder if anybody reads this stuff before they ship the software. Oh, and the software needed at least five updates, that is the software I downloaded today needed five updates.

The problem with photocasting

Lots of hay has been made this week over the Mac only nature of photocasting. Apple is being bashed from all sides for using photocasting as a marketing ploy for Safari. It seems, however, that a few relevant facts may be left out. Here's what I've been able to determine.

In addition to working with the Safari and iPhoto duo, photocasting also works well with Thunderbird on Windows and on both platforms Bloglines has no problem reading the feed and showing it.

Apple is checking for an RSS capable browser and if you don't have one you'll see a message suggesting Safari works well. What are they supposed to suggest instead? A competitor's product? Safari has some of the best river of news style RSS display of any browser on the market. Sure you can do the same thing with NetNewsWire but it eats CPU cycles and spits them out to get warmed up.

What is being overlooked is an interesting new setup. If you come to visit a feed with a non-feed reader why should I not set my web server to show you the content you will be able to see? Browser detection has been in use for years to accommodate mobile users with their WAP browsers. Why not do the same with web feeds on the desktop. Something to take a look at once the Drupal 4.7 release hits the streets.

Testing a workaround for XML-RPC on DirecWAY

Testing out a possible work-around for DirecWAY's refusal to fix the problem with sending XML-RPC requests. If it works it won't work for everything (i.e. you'll have to have control of the server as well as the client).

Slowdowns using IRM on Safari

For the past few months we've been working with Information Resource Manager at work. It seems to be one of the best open source/freeware database managers for tracking assets and help desk functions for small teams. The lingering annoyance had been slow performance. The more I experimented it turned out the slow performance was only when using Safari/OS X. A quick trip to the /Applications/Utilites/Java/J2SE 5.0/ folder and opening up the Java Preferences allowed me to change the Java settings from 1.4.2 to J2SE 5.0 and all is well.

The latest release of IRM (Yesterday) adds some great functionality for moving printers and other non-computer assets into their own categories.


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