Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Carpet Dimensions of Willingboro

We just had some work done by this company in our home.

The carpet installation was fine--but the carpet was delivered days past the promised date, the installers showed up 2 hours late, and the company (Mike, the salesman) refused to accept a $50 coupon that we presented to the installers. He told us to save it for next time.

"Oh, for $50, you're going to get mad."

You bet---$50 is $50. Shame we tipped the installers $20.

Nice customer relations.
 The foyer replacement job will go to someone (anyone) else---all for the sake of a $50 coupon that you refused to honor on the day of installation.

By the way, the last time we used this company 4 years ago, they laid carpet in our downstairs family room.

After arriving late for the job, they placed the contents of the family room (sofa, chairs, Big Screen Television) on our deck and proceeded to go to lunch.

It was quite a thrill to hear the sound of thunder in the background, and the installers managed to get there before the rain came.

No damage was done and I have no complaint with the installers---but this company needs to take a lesson about Customer Relations during a recession.

I'll bad mouth them to anyone and everyone who wants to listen to me for the next 2 weeks---and I have a big mouth, and a large audience.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Programming Projects that may light your fire

I've been meaning to put some additional programming projects on my website.

When I was taking my first programming class, some of these were pretty infectuous.

Let's start with just a couple and we'll see how we do---I have over 100 here...

1. Write a program that asks the user to enter 2 numbers, obtains the 2 numbers from the user, then displays the product of the 2 numbers.

2. Write a program that displays the numbers from 1 to 10. Do not use a loop.

3. Write a program that utilizes looping to display the numbers from 1 to 10.

4. Write a program that asks the user to enter 2 numbers, obtains the 2 numbers, then displays the larger of the two numbers. If the 2 numbers are equal, that display the message "These numbers are the same"

5. Write a program that utilizes looping to display the following table of values:

N 10 * N 100 * N 1000 * N 10000 * N
1 10 100 1000 10000
2 20 200 2000 20000
3 30 300 3000 30000
4 40 400 4000 40000
5 50 500 5000 50000
6 60 600 6000 60000
7 70 700 7000 70000
8 80 800 8000 80000
9 90 900 9000 90000
10 100 1000 10000 10000
11 110 1100 11000 110000

Excel 2003 can't open a Lotus 1-2-3 File

I tried to open an old Lotus 1-2-3 file in Excel 2003 and received this message

"You are attempting to open a file type that is blocked by your registry policy setting".

Isn't that a pain.

Microsoft has a fix on its website that will allow you to specify a folder containing Lotus 1-2-3 files you wish to open. Here's the link...

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Game Programming Site

Check out this site that one of my students recommended for Game Programming

Kids Programming

Here are a couple of great websites for kids wanted to learn how to program Microsoft products...

C# for Kids

Kids Corner

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Childhood Brain Tumor Foundation

Just got my quarterly newsletter from the Childhoold Brain Tumor Foundation, a charity to which I contribute.

It's full of stories, most of them heartbreaking.

This month

Remembering Ricky...

Jessica Catherine Randall. Forever 17.

and a hundred more on Page 6.

I wait until the house is empty before reading it so I can cry alone.

Consider contributing---you are bound to know someone with a brain tumor (if it isn't you) sometime in your life.

Hack Yourself

You should hack yourself before others do it...

Just this morning, I discovered residents of my small town listed on a new site I didn't know existed...well, I did, but I didn't consider it significant. Armed with a name, people can steal your identify. Try this one...

Monday, September 7, 2009

The 1964 Phillies

As the Phillies move towards losing their 4th game in a row to the Houston Astros, I thought I would revisit the 10 game losing streak that cost them the 1964 Pennant. As you can see, only a few of the games were close, and I had the good fortune to attend Loss #5, a 12 inning affair in which Dick Allen (then Richie) tied the game with a 2 out, 2 run Home Run over the roof in Center field to tie the score in the 10th inning (the Phils later would lose in the 12th). My thanks to my brother Joe for reminding me that he took me to the game---it was exciting, and heartbreaking, at the same time.

10 Game Losing Streak

Date Phils Score Opponent Score Comment

Sep 21 PHILS 0 CINCINNATI 1 (Game where Chico Ruiz stole home in the 6th inning).

Sep 25 PHILS 5 MILWAUKEE 7 (12 Innings) I was there.

Sep 28 PHILS 1 ST. LOUIS 5
Sep 29 PHILS 2 @ ST. LOUIS 4
Sep 30 PHILS 5 @ ST. LOUIS 8

The Phils ended the season by winning their final 2 games in Cincinatti.

A $1 Donation

Like many small business owners with a web presence, I have a button on my website

that solicits donations from people who find some of my free material/advice useful.

Most people donate a dollar, which is the default value displayed when they click on the Donation button.

Ordinarily, I'm happy to receive the donation, but wish it could have been more :)

A week ago, I received a $1 donation from a person in Pakistan, and after checking out the Relative Standard of Living in Pakistan versus the United States, came to the conclusion that this person's dollar was the equivalent of a $50 donation from a U.S. Citizen.

I just wanted to say thank you!

Tile by Bill Ness

Bill Ness, of Tile by Bill Ness, a Cinnaminson NJ company

recently did some tile work at my house.

If you'd like an appraisal of Bill's work, feel free to contact me via phone at


Thanks Megan

I wanted to thank Megan Duckett, CEO of Sew What? Inc for taking my phone call last Monday, August 31st, while I was discussing her company in a Case Study that appears in the McGraw Hill Textbook I use in my evening class, MIS 204 (Introduction to Management Information Systems).

I've tried calling Bill Gates (Microsoft) and Jeff Bezos ( before with no luck.

When I called I reach someone (Sylvia, I believe) who was polite and who actually took the time to see if Megan would talk with me and the class.

Megan was busy working on a project at the time, but told Sylvia to get my number and told me she would call me back in 5 minutes--and she did!

We had a nice 3 minute conversation, in which I explained that we were reading about her very successful company---a company, by the way, that prides itself on Customer Service!

That's not surprising if the CEO takes a cold phone call from a College Professor and spends valuable time offering advice to students in today's work environment.

Her advice--study hard. She said she didn't always follow this advice herself, and that she's had to work twice as hard to overcome it.

I think she's doing pretty well for herself.

Megan had just come from the Los Angeles Forum where she was meeting one of her clients---Myley Cyrus (who she describes as a nice person).

You can read more about Megan and her company here...

and here's a blog that Megan maintains...