Paying it backward to Hanselman's Walk for Diabetes

Scott's an awesome blogger that I watch almost as closely as my inbox. He's an entertaining writer/speaker, but more than anything - the stuff I get from his blog helps, truly helps. Not only do I read whatever he has to say, I use his site for repeat references to tools, tips and techniques that I've once read on his site. He's a fellow MS Regional Director and one of the reasons I'm so humbled to be in such fine company.

In the past 48 hours, Scott has helped me out twice - without knowing it even.

  1. Back in August, Scott shared his problem (and solution) to his nephew deleting all the pictures on his camera. Firstly, we really know he deleted them himself. “my nephew“? Come on, really - how transparent. If this was true he would have referred to him as “My sister's little brat“. Anyway, I digress. Scott's solution was found in his successful use of Digital Picture Recovery. Last week my father returned from a trip to Chicago where he had not only snapped 250 pictures of his newest grandchild, but somehow had managed to also format the memory chip. I can almost see him now. “Hmm, format - cool, I can improve the format of my pictures, let's try this out“. Before he had a chance to tell me about it - he had also taken 3 new pictures on the newly formatted card before I told him to stop. Did I spend hours trying to unsuccessfully undelete this stuff myself? No. Did I spend hours surfing the net and trying several tools to undelete this stuff? No. Instead I spent about 25 minutes looking up the entry in Scott's blog, downloading the demo, verifying it would work, then paying for the upgraded real version and doing the restore. 235 of 250 pictures saved. Thanks Scott.
  2. This past weekend, I finally installed a second video card in my Windows Media Centre Machine. My wife uses an old laptop of mine on our kitchen breakfast bar....about 15 feet from the MCE box. We use our MCE box for MP3's, a DVD player, and picture and  video viewing. We don't use it to watch TV because we have a dual tuner HDTV PVR (Motorola 6412) that hauls. The old laptop is brutal (half of the keys are missing thanks to a 3 year old with a keyboard fetish). My goal was to dual head the MCE and run a long VGA cable to the counter where I purchased a new Dell 20“ widescreen monitor and wireless keyboard/mouse. I also ran 2 USB extension cables with a repeater to the usb hub on the monitor where the keyboard/mouse plug into. It's all great, but you really need some improvements to the dual monitor support in Windows, especially if you are going to essentially use it like two computers and where the monitors are not side by each. ATI's Hydravision helps with some dialog pinning functions, but you really need a second task bar. I also wanted to have my screensaver of photos show up on both monitors. I know Scott has done lots of messing around with multiple monitors so I went through his blog and found this to Ultramon.

In general, Scott's Ultimate List of Tools is one of my first places to go (before Google) when I'm looking for some nifty tool or widget to fill a gap in my setup. That fact Scott is a .NET developer/architect is a bonus since he also blogs about things that affect that part of my life too.

Now Scott also blogs about Diabetes. He's done a great job of explaining it, and how he works on making it easier to live with. He almost makes me wish I had Diabetes so I could play with all the the toys he's got physically hooked up to himself. The sad part though, is that despite the best technology has to offer, it's still a huge pain in the ass to live with it. If you don't have Diabetes and want to understand what it's all about, I suggest you read his blog. I've referred a few friends and relatives with Diabetes to his blog in the hopes they'll learn more about ways to better live with it.

Now here's the kicker. Scott doesn't ask for much from his blog readers. Many of you have reaped benefits from reading his blog and if you have, now is a great chance to pay it back. Scott is trying to raise $10,000 in his fight to cure Diabetes with a Walk on May 6th. You can make a tax deductible donation via credit card or paypal and it will take you less than 5 minutes. Follow the links on his page.

Digg it.