For a few years now I’ve been wanting to tie our Christmas lights into my Insteon Home Automation, but I haven’t had any of the Insteon hardware/software hooked up due to various houses we were in. This year is different, this year my Christmas lights are hooked up to my home automation system!
It has been 3+ years since I’ve worked with the Insteon hardware that I acquired years ago (some of which was documented here), since the last time I gave Insteon a go, we have moved to from San Carlos, CA, to Half Moon Bay, Ca, to Ballwin, MO, and now we’ve purchased a home in Wildwood, Missouri.
In late June 2014, we took a family vacation. We left from St. Louis and drove west to the promise land. Colorado, that’s my promise land. The beautiful country, the place I would go if I were rich and could move all of our family (immediate and extended) to one place without thinking about the cost involved in such an undertaking.
Our family of four (myself and my wife, plus a 3 year old daughter, and recently turned 1yr old son) visited Denver, friends, family, and then we went further west, to a place 50 miles from the nearest town, at 9500’, deep into Wilderness country.
We went to Trapper’s Lake.
Just over 5 years after we purchased our first house, and almost 4 years to the day we sold that house, we are once again house hunting. This time, we are in St. Louis, as opposed to the last time around with http://going2colorado.com/ and ultimately http://ourcoloradolife.com/. I don’t envision building a full blown website like we did last time around, but who knows, maybe I’ll get creative one evening and do it.
So, why St. Louis? With all the bad stories lately (#Ferguson and the fact that Missouri is rated poorly) you might think, “Who in their right mind would want to live in Missouri?”.
One of the best things I love about the DNN platform is the ease of building, releasing, and updating Extensions for your website. If you need custom functionality you can either build something yourself, or likely find something that someone else has developed previously that might fit your needs.
If you are an extension developer for DNN (previously DotNetNuke), you have many options for how you can get those modules into the hands of potential customers. If you want to get your modules into the hands of as many different users as possible, you can’t just stick to one distribution mechanism, you need to reach out and try to get your extension available in as many places as possible.
Some of the ways for distributing your modules include: 1) Hosting on your own website, 2) Hosting on GitHub, 3) Hosting on Codeplex. The often overlooked one however, especially for free and open source modules, is 4) The DNN Store.
The Store is a great marketplace for DNN extensions, and while it primarily is used to “sell” extensions, there was even a time free extensions were discouraged or even removed, that is not the case anymore. You can list your extensions, modules, skins, or even providers, to get your products out in front of more customers. Some of the benefits of doing so
One thing I would highly suggest, if you are selling modules, DO not use the Store as a way to get people to “try” your modules, and then point them to your own website to do the selling. That is just not cool.
Please be sure to check out some of my free extensions in the Store: HammerFlex and DNNCHAT being the two most popular extensions I have there. And yes, to be upfront, those links have referral codes embedded in them!
If you’ve recently upgraded to DotNetNuke 7.3, you might not have noticed that your scheduled tasks aren’t running. How do you know if your tasks are running or not? Follow these steps
With the release of DNN 7.3.0 this week, it was time for me to get my sites upgraded. I upgraded most of the sites without any issues, but wanted to point out a few errors that I received on sites, and how I resolved them.
The very first upgrade I did started out bad, it was for this site, and while the upgrade was 100% successful, as soon as I tried to load the site I got a generic 500 error. Accessing the site from the webserver gave me a little more information, seen below, but not much.
This little boy is trying to learn to walk, and won't give up. What he does at the end will make you smile.
Age: 11 months
This weekend Dave and I headed down to Blytheville Arkansas for the first SCCA ProSolo of the 2014 season. I haven’t given autocross much though since Nationals in September, the primary thought I have had since then is that I figured I wouldn’t autocross much this year. The local SCCA region really put a damper on my autocross spirits last year, so I figured I might run a few National level events, but few if any local events.
Warning, a little bit of unsolicited SCCA ProSolo propaganda:
tl;dr Do a ProSolo, they are damn fun. The next ProSolo is March 22-23 in Blytheville Arkansas, more info at http://cjh.am/arprosolo
If you've never done a SCCA ProSolo event, you are missing out. It is some of the most fun you can experience in the sport of Autocross, it can get your blood pumping like a normal autocross can’t.
One of the things I’ve failed to do with my latest free open source skin, HammerFlex, for DNN is provide a good overview of how to utilize the skin. To really understand a skin, one must know the layout, and the thought process behind the layout (panes).
I used to be a Microsoft fanboy, really, used to be. I had Windows Phone back when it was SmartPhone or Windows Mobile, or whatever they wanted to call it (too long ago to remember, and it was always changing). I purchased a 30gb Zune the day they came out (unboxing video), I purchased a 4gb zune after those devices came out. I had a Zune Pass for too many years to count.
A month or so ago I released a new open source skin for DotNetNuke (DNN), called HammerFlex. One of the cool things about the HammerFlex skin is the implementation of Bootstrap, and specifically the Carousel feature that allows you to add a carousel/slider to your site.
The skin is designed to use the carousel at the top of a page, I haven’t tried it elsewhere, though it might be possible to use in other Panes in the DNN Skin.
I decided recently it was time to upgrade the look of my various websites, and while I originally considered modifying my MultiFunction skin for DNN, ultimately I decided to start from the ground up and create a new Skin for DNN using Bootstrap (http://getbootstrap.com), I’ve decided to call it HammerFlex.
I've debated for the past few weeks if I was going to set any goals for 2014. I'm didn't really complete many of my goals for 2013, but I have decided that I should at least set a few simple goals to work towards.
Last year I rode 822 miles on the bicycle, far less than the 1800 miles the year before. For 2014 I want to ride 2000 miles by bicycle. That'll require that I ride a lot more than I did in 2013. Tomorrow it is supposed to snow, I'm thinking it might be a good time to take the mountain bike out for a spin! To be honest, that'll just be around the yard to see how dangerous riding is in the snow, but before the end of January I need to have at least 50 miles under my belt.
This post is really a test of sorts. If you can read it, that means that Windows Live Writer still works as a desktop blogging platform. It’s been many years since I’ve actively blogged, but so far for 2014 I’m 2 for 2 (3 for 3 if this works). In the days of old, Windows Live Writer (WLW) was a great little tool for blogging, creating and saving your blog on your PC, then easily publishing it out to your website.
Recently I was promoted, from my position of Sr Software Developer and team lead, to Director of Customer Experience, directing a team of 15 people at ClubReady, Inc. I have 4 software developers that work for me, and 11 customer support and training personnel. One thing I've noticed, not just at ClubReady, is that people often times have a hard time communicating with others, be that in person, or electronically. Over the years I've learned a thing or two about communicating, so I wanted to put together a list of ways to help people communicate better in your professional career.
I don't think I've always been a good communicator, so I do believe it is something that anyone can work at, and improve. As a kid, I was pretty shy, I didn't like getting up in front of people and speaking, and I clearly remember missing out on a holiday concert in preschool when I cried my eyes out because I didn't want to sing in front of a crowd. At some point though, that changed, I really don't know when that was? If I could attribute it to one thing, I guess it was likely my 6 years of band (saxophone) in middle/high school. In College I managed to be a DJ on the college radio station after interviewing for the program multiple times, though it wasn't really until after college that I started doing any public speaking.
My website was due for an overhauled design, somehow a full year came and went and I hadn't done any major updates to the website. I guess that is what happens when you, move, change jobs, and have a second child in on year, time sort of magically goes away.
A couple of weeks ago I started working on a new DNN skin, to replace my MultiFunction skin that I've had in use here on ChrisHammond.com for a number of years now. Initially I was going to work on upgrading MF, but after giving it some thought, I felt like I wanted to start over, and this time around I wasn't sure that I was going to create an open source skin, most likely just something that I would use for my own websites, of which I have plenty to spread the skin around on.
Earlier in 2013 I started working on a new round of DNN Module Development tutorials. For a few months now I've been promising that I would finish up that series, but at this point I am going to announce that the series is on hiatus.
There are a number of reasons for this, the primary of which is that I am simply too busy. My work role at ClubReady, Inc. has changed over the past month, was promoted to the Director of Customer Experience leading a team of 14 other folks, including developers and customer service staff.
In October, the SignalR project had their first official 2.0.0 release, and with that comes a number of changes to make your modules work with SignalR. You can upgrade your SignalR package via Nuget.
You can find a guide to upgrading your projects at http://www.asp.net/signalr/overview/signalr-20/getting-started-with-signalr-20/upgrading-signalr-1x-projects-to-20
In a previous blog post I talked about what you can do to get DNN 7.1 working if you previously had Xepient's Open Search installed. One thing I failed to cover though, was what happens after you disable open search? You likely no longer have the DNN Search Results module on a page, and after upgrading to DNN 7.1.2 (I didn't notice this in 7.1.0) you may find that the "Preview" search results in the Search SkinObject no longer work.
You may not actually notice, but if you try to "search" and you just get redirected back to the page you were on when you searched, you likely are running into the problem I have a fix for below.
I upgraded a number of websites to DNN 7.1.2 tonight, and I ran into two different problems, this blog post will hopefully help you address the issues that I ran into, if you happen to run into them as well.
Disclaimer: Always backup your website/database before making any changes or running any SQL scripts you got off the web. I don't take any responsibility for damage you cause to your own website, but if you need consulting help with your DNN site, I am available.
Earlier this year I started on a project to learn how to use SignalR, I had reasons to do so for my full time job (non-DNN related) but considering my DNN experience over the past 11 years I figured that learning how to use SignalR with DNN would be my...(read more)
In a previous blog post I talked about how to use SignalR with your DotNetNuke modules, well, if you are using DNN 7.1 and the "Advanced" URLFormat option (upgrades won't use this by default, new installs will) then the SignalR/Hubs route will no longer work, DNN will return a 404 for that path.
What you need to do is "override" the URL settings in DNN. In the DNN Platform, you have to do this manually, via the database, I believe the EVOQ ($paid$) versions have a UI for this, but for those of us who focus specifically on the open source platform, you need to make manually update database entries to customize the URL handling in 7.1+.
I was upgrading a customer's website this evening, in a test environment thankfully, and ran into a problem. The upgrade appeared to run successfully, minus one little issue with a primary key (in the 6.0.0 script).
But after running the upgrade, the website wouldn't load. I kept getting an error in Chrome, and then finally started getting 503 errors as the server shut down the application pool completely.
I'm off on a Harley Weekend tomorrow, read more here!