Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

MySQL Group_Concat through a Join

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

So today I came across a problem where I want to pull all available projects in the system and also get a list of the users associated with that project. The way we had done it before was to grab a list of the projects and do an additional call for each to find the users. That turns out to be kind of a pain, especially on processing time. Today I taught myself how to use the GROUP_CONCAT feature and turn about 10 seconds of compute time down to about 0.0468 seconds. Gnarly! Here’s the sql:

SELECT CONCAT_WS( ' ', u.firstName, u.lastName ) ,
FROM projectsharing ps
WHERE ps.projectId =
GROUP BY ps.projectId
) AS combinedusers,, project.description, project.estimatedHours, project.actualHours, project.ownerId, project.parentId,
FROM project
LEFT OUTER JOIN user u ON ( = project.ownerId )

This outputs our project data with a list of concatenated user ids.

Auto-Upgrade WordPress on Ubuntu

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Just a quick fyi: to allow automatic upgrades on an Ubuntu install, make sure the documentroot has group write for www-data:


sudo chown -R www-data.myusername /var/www/websiteRoot

sudo chmod -R g+w /var/www/websiteRoot



vmware host IP

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Just wanted to throw this up before I forget it. If you’re using vmware on an OS X machine with a Windows Client and need to connect to the host (OS X) computer you can find the IP by:

Open up the command line tool in Windows.

Type ‘ipconfig’ to see the network info.

In there you’ll see the ‘gateway’ IP address. That’s the address you use to connect to whatever on your OS X host =)

Not that I need to post all these details for myself, but it might be useful for someone else. I couldn’t find it anywhere in my Google searches.


My new ADD solution: GTD

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

I’ve kinda had a breakthrough over the past few weeks I thought was worthy writing about. With my new brain(my droid) its been possible for me to use Internet tools almost anywhere I have service. I’ve never been able to successfully use an online task service before due to the fact I’m never by my computer when I remember I have to do something. For me the ‘always connected’ mantra is the only way to go, and pen/paper was the only way to acomplish it.

Enter GTD and RTM. Alone they are mighty BUT TOGETHER THEY ARE SUPER AWESOME!

GTD (getting things done) is a task management system developed by David Allen. The purpose of this is getting all the tasks (which he calls open loops) out of your head. This really helps you forget about them so you can focus on only what you have to get done now.

RTM (remember the milk) is a very feature-full online task management app. They’ve got great syncing tools for mobile(droid/iphone apps), daily emails, location awareness, and so much other awesome shtuff. Overall its very easy to implement GTD with it, and it has seriosly changed my life. Check it out:

why google is winning

Friday, October 16th, 2009

In the past year or so I’ve noticed something simple about google’s strategy that is going to push them even further from M$ in the coming years. It’s all about planning for the future, and not deviating from that plan.

The main examples I’m going to use are search, and android. There’s a concept of once you’re the king, it’s extremely hard to be overtaken. M$ has done this with the OS and Google with search. Unless you can do a massive leap frog over the king, there’s almost no point in throwing a crap load of money trying.
M$ has been trying to do this with search, but they will never win. I’m sorry, but M$ has not showed in the past that they are smart or clever enough to push any massive feature list that will get the masses to switch from google. They had the wrong mindset/business plan and in the end bing will fail.
Google, on the other hand, has the right mindset. Their mindset is on the future, and the future for the web is mobile. This, I believe, is the number 1 reason behind Android. Google creates this great mobile operating system, that hardware venders can use for free, and boom, Google owns search on any mobile device that uses Android (along with all the other mobile OSs that use goog for search).
Google now has the last laugh as they become the king of mobile search, while M$ is trying to play catchup with something Google perfected over 5 years ago.

Google Adds Alternate Routes to Map Driving Directions

Friday, June 12th, 2009

My love for online mapping grows as someone finally adds alternate routes to driving directions.
The major benefit of this is avoiding traffic. In cities like Chicago this can be huge. It would have been awesome to have had this when I was driving to work, instead of taking the train like I do now.

It gives you the estimated times driving times for all routes, including estimated times with traffic. It also gives the transit info, including alternate transit routes and times for those.

I’ve been pretty pumped about this type of feature since I heard about it in the Dash GPS devices, and now it’s finally something I can use.

check it out:,-87.874832&sspn=0.134352,0.311737&ie=UTF8&z=12

synergy – awesome kvm

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

I finally had it this week having to use 3 keyboards/mice for my computers around my personal office. My friend, a while ago, told me about an open-source solution called synergy.

I installed it last night on two ubuntu machines and it was so easy and fast to install.

sudo apt-get install synergy quicksynergy

Then create a synergy.conf . Here’s mine:

sudo vi /etc/synergy.conf:
section: screens

section: aliases

section: links
right = kelly
left = mary

section: options
screenSaverSync = false
# My KVM uses Scroll Lock to switch screens, so set the
# hotkey to lock the cursor to the screen to something else
keystroke(f12) = lockCursorToScreen(toggle)

Then start:
synergys -f –config /etc/synergy.conf

And that’s it. It works awesome! Check it out if you have multi-monitors with different boxes.

bye bye rss…time to switch to twitter

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

So since I use it more often, and 90+% of my blogs are on twitter…I’m going to start leaving rss for twitter. It forces my blogs to make my life more efficient with the 140 char limit. Twitter also has a better program base then google reader does making it much easier to use.

Sorry rss…twitter wins.

looking for nerds in Chicago… anyone there?

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

I’ve recently found out I work way too much. I’m also training for another marathon in April which takes up time, and sometimes I like to sleep. I recently tried bar trivia for the first time and realized my need to have a few more like-minds around me.

It’s a little hard for me to find friends I like. I get bored way to easy with my ADD and too many people are more interested in things that just don’t have any depth at all. You know what I’m talking about.

So it’s time for me to make some friends that have smarts, are unique and a bit nerdy I guess. Any ideas?

podcasting/media subscribing will replace tv…and it’s available now

Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

I bought an iPod Touch about 5 or so months ago, and it’s rarely left my side since. This little device is amazing. Easy to learn, and I have access to any type of media I want with just a few swipes and taps of my fingers. It’s introduced me first-hand to the power of iTunes and what the apple media business model means for our future. What if you could pick the shows you want to watch at night through your phone, any time of the day, and have them ready for you whenever you wanted to watch them? Yes, like a Tivo on steriods. As easy as flipping through the channels on your current tv.

Right now to copy this type of model is expensive and time consuming. First you have to setup your computer so it outputs to the tv. Then you need the right software to play your videos and music. Then you need a way to get your media. And what if you want to watch it in a different room, or even on your smart-phone?

iTunes has started the model, but it’s too proprietary right now to become as accepted as the tv. Though it is a giant step forward.

With iTunes you can subscribe to video and audio-only podcasts. This means if your favorite news cast makes their show available online, all you have to do it subscribe to it once and iTunes will automatically get the show for you everyday to watch at your disposal. No more missing shows and news because of work or other activities.

What I love most is the ability to get things that I can’t with tv(especially now I don’t have cable). I can listen to This Week in Teck (, pretty much all espn shows, web design shows, and political news casts. This truely lets you pick your own window on the world, from the big tv corp view, to the small independents. Anyone with a microphone and the Internet can get their voice out to the whole world. This is the start of the next evolution in media, and I suggest you try it out.