How to run asciiquarium on Ubuntu

Asciiquarium is a fun ASCII art program. How to get it running on Ubuntu?

  1. Get the tarball: http://www.robobunny.com/projects/asciiquarium/html/
  2. Then…
    sudo mkdir /opt/asciiquarium
    cd /opt/asciiquarium
    #untar the tarball here, then...
    sudo apt-get install libcurses-perl
    cpan install Term::Animation
    perl asciiquarium

(HT: Askubuntu.com)

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@@ROWCOUNT = 1 after empty MIN() query

Ran across a surprising SQL Server thing today: I was updating a query If you run a query that returns no rows and use the MIN() aggregate function, you get an empty resultset as expected, but the @@ROWCOUNT variable is set to 1. If you write the query as a TOP(1) query in a situation where it returns no rows though, you still get an empty resultset but @@ROWCOUNT is set to zero as expected.

Example of this in action (tested on SQL Server 2012):

CREATE TABLE MyTable(MyId INTEGER, MyName NVARCHAR(128));
SELECT MIN(MyId)
FROM MyTable
WHERE MyName LIKE 'MyTag'
IF @@ROWCOUNT <> 0 PRINT 'Nonzero row count'
ELSE PRINT 'Zero row count'
--Output: Nonzero row count
SELECT TOP(1) MyId
FROM MyTable
WHERE MyName LIKE 'MyTag'
ORDER BY MyId
IF @@ROWCOUNT <> 0 PRINT 'Nonzero row count'
ELSE PRINT 'Zero row count'
--Output: Zero row count
DROP TABLE MyTable;

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How to have some roman numeral page numbers and some arabic page numbers in an existing document in LibreOffice

I needed to format an existing LibreOffice 4.3 document to have some beginning pages with no page numbers, then some pages numbered with roman numerals (i, ii, iii…), then the rest of the pages numbered with arabic numerals (1, 2, 3…). Here’s how you do it.

1. Create a page style that will do roman numeral page numbers in the footer

1.1. Go to Format -> Styles and Formatting (or press F11)…

libreoffice-multiple-footer-styles-1 Read the rest of this entry »

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Making an ugly podcast page look better in Drupal OpenChurch

We currently use Drupal OpenChurch for our church website. On the sermon podcast page, any time there was a long sermon title the “play mp3 file” link would overwrite some of the text of the title, looking ugly:
clearnotechurch.com-ugly-podcast-page-01 Read the rest of this entry »

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Clearing the cache on Oracle and SQL Server

To clear the cache on Oracle:

ALTER SYSTEM FLUSH BUFFER_CACHE;
ALTER SYSTEM FLUSH SHARED_POOL;

To clear the cache on SQL Server:

CHECKPOINT;
GO
DBCC DROPCLEANBUFFERS;
GO

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SQL Server named instance vs. default instance

When you’re installing SQL Server (2008 R2 in my case) and you are prompted whether you want to create a default instance or a named instance, understand that creating a named instance means that you will be required to add that instance name to the server name when you connect via SQL Server Management Studio (SqlServerName\InstanceName). If you want to be able to connect to your instance without having to specify it explicitly, create a default instance. Then you just connect to SqlServerName and it finds the default instance.

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Life, death, and broken software

In a post titled Life, Death, and Splitting Secrets, Jeff Moser presents a software solution for splitting up a password N ways so your loved ones can put the secrets together and get access to critical information from you after your death, using a computer program.

While this shared secret approach is interesting for certain uses, it is unwise for Moser’s stated use… Read the rest of this entry »

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