Archive for February, 2010

Understanding how I learned, to keep learning better

I’m trying to get a better grasp on how I learn, so that I can focus my efforts to maximize the amount of material I can cover and also so that I can glean the most valuable information from that material. I was homeschooled for grade and high school, so I had a great opportunity to study what I was interested in and I was able to spend a fair amount of time doing things and making observations about those things.Oregon_Trail I was listening to the radio the other day, and they were talking about Scurvy and Vitamin C. It made me think about when I first heard of Scurvy – The Oregon Trail video games.

I played all of the Oregon Trail games, but the third  edition has a special place in my heart, I played this game extensively, and at the time it helped improve my reading comprehension, because the game almost exclusively text based.

For those who never played, the basic point of the game is to successfully take your family across the Oregon trail. You start out buy choosing all of the items you are going to bring on the trail – every thing from butter, to oxen, to bacon.

A common occurrence in all of my adventures in the Oregon Trail was Scurvy. It took me a few trips down the trail, but after loosing several family members to Scurvy I realized that when I brought lots of citrus fruit, there were far fewer occurrences of scurvy.

What did I glean from this trip down memory lane? This is just one example, but I’m finding that I learn from seeing cause and effect. So when I’m trying to grasp a new concept, I try to focus on seeing the cause and the effect.

The example isn’t very relevant in the world we live in today, since we’re almost all getting our 45-95 milligrams of Vitamin C every day, but the take-home message is to understand what part helps you get a concept, and internalize it.



2010/02/09 at 22:57 Leave a comment

Silverlight and QueryString Parameters via LINQ

I’ve been privaliged enough to be working with Silverlight recently, and I’m really pleased with everything about it so far. Really, the most aggravating thing is that the Linux version (Moonlight) is a version behind.

Cutting to the chase here, I was trying to find an elegant solution to getting a bunch of data from a QueryString into my Silverlight application, sadly for my situation there was not a more robust data transfer mechanism available, so the QueryString had to suffice.

Getting to the QueryString from Silverlight isn’t as painless as it is from ASP.NET. Nothing simply like Request.QueryString[“mode”] works in Silverlight, so to get arround that I came up with this sexy little LINQ query to make it as close to that one badass ASP.NET line.

String mode = (from v in System.Windows.Browser.HtmlPage.Document.QueryString 
    where v.Key == "mode"  
    select v.Value).SingleOrDefault(); 

Is there a better way to get at the QueryString from Silverlight? Not that I’ve found, let me know if you have a better approach.

2010/02/06 at 01:55 Leave a comment

Windows Update Website is Blank?

I was struggling with trying to update an XP machine, opening up Windows Update took me to a completely blank page – absolutely nothing. Turns out that several items got unregistered, and simply registering them with the OS resolved the issue for me:

regsvr32 jscript
regsvr32 vbscript
regsvr32 /i mshtml

Additional information here:

2010/02/06 at 01:37 Leave a comment

Citrix Client on Ubuntu with a Secure Gateway

I’ve been running Ubuntu for about a year now. It’s not my primary OS by any stretch but I run it on a VM and I boot into it more and more frequently.

When I installed the Citrix client and tried to connect to a Citrix Secure Gateway, I was promptly greeted by this message:


Basically, an SSL Error 61 – you have not chosen to trust the certificate.

For whatever reason, when you install the Citrix client, it comes with about six trusted certificates and lets face it, that just isn’t enough.

Citrix stores it’s certificates in the /usr/lib/ICAClient/keystore/cacerts/ directory, so you can either export the certificate from the website into that directory, or take the brut force approach I did and copied all of Firefox’s trusted certificates into Citrix ICA client.

Pop open a terminal window and enter in this badboy and you should be all set:

sudo cp -r /usr/share/ca-certificates/mozilla/* /usr/lib/ICAClient/keystore/cacerts/

I presume this would work on other Linux distributions as well, but I haven’t had a chance to test it out yet.

2010/02/06 at 01:32 Leave a comment

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