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Digital Photography School How to Push Past Fear in Photography: A Retrospect The post How to Push Past Fear in Photography: A Retrospect appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Adam Welch. Five years. It doesn’t seem like so long ago that I first sat down to write an article which I hoped would help other photographers overcome some of the fears that we all face at one time or another. So much can change in five years. As I sit here and read back through that […] The post How to Push Past Fear in Photography: A Retrospect appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Adam Welch. Feb 17 Digital Photography School 5 Great Android Apps for Taking Creative Selfies The post 5 Great Android Apps for Taking Creative Selfies appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Erin Fitzgibbon. Selfies with a Creative Twist Last year I wrote an article about pushing beyond the selfie. I wrote about trying to make self-portraits that spoke more deeply about who you are as a person; that we should all try to make a portrait that portrays more than just a smiling face. I still believe strongly […] The post 5 Great Android Apps for Taking Creative Selfies appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Erin Fitzgibbon. Feb 17 Harold Davis Curves Ahead Starting with sunlight coming through vessels with color, I pared down my abstractions. But lately we have been under a river of rain. Sunlight is scarce. But it doesn’t take much to create an image. Just a camera, really. Simplicity is best. There are curves ahead. Feb 16 Digital Photography School Enhance Your Images with Creative Photo Editing The post Enhance Your Images with Creative Photo Editing appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Stacey Hill. Much effort goes into creating an image; you have to buy the camera gear, learn how to use it, and then get out there and take interesting photos. However, once they are taken and downloaded on our computers, many images never see daylight.  Perhaps we take too many shots and can’t choose the best ones? […] The post Enhance Your Images with Creative Photo Editing appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Stacey Hill. Feb 16 Harold Davis Free Topaz Webinar with Harold Davis on Tuesday Feb 19 Webinar with Harold Davis: Topaz As an Integral Part of Creative Post-Production Tuesday February 19, 2019 at 2PM PT (4PM CT), 45 minute presentation with 15 minutes for Q&A. The webinar is free, but advance registration is strongly suggested. Click here to register for the webinar. Webinar Description: In this all-new webinar, Harold Davis shows […] Feb 15 SitePoint How to Build Your First Static Site with Gatsby Thinking about getting on the JAMStack bandwagon? If your answer is Yes, then Gatsby, one of the hottest static site generators around, could be just what you're looking for. JAM stands for JavaScript, APIs, and Markup. In other words, when the dynamic parts of a site or app during the request/response cycle are taken care of by JavaScript in the client, all server-side processes take place using APIs accessed over HTTPS by JavaScript, and templated markup is prebuilt at deploy time often using a static site generator, that's the JAMStack. It's performant, inexpensive to scale and offers better security and a smooth developer experience. Why Use a Static Site The static site model doesn't fit all kinds of projects, but when it does it has a number of advantages. Here are a few of them. The post How to Build Your First Static Site with Gatsby appeared first on SitePoint. Feb 15 Digital Photography School Weekly Photography Challenge – Wrinkles The post Weekly Photography Challenge – Wrinkles appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Caz Nowaczyk. This week’s photography challenge topic is WRINKLES! Your photos can include anything has wrinkles. It could be wrinkles on an animal, aging lines on a face or hands, wrinkles in clothing or sheets, wrinkles in paper, etc. They can be color, black and white, moody or bright. You get the picture. Have fun, and I look […] The post Weekly Photography Challenge – Wrinkles appeared first on Digital Photography School. It was authored by Caz Nowaczyk. Feb 15 Rick Strahl's Web Log WPF Hanging in Infinite Rendering Loop I ran into a nasty WPF issue recently with Markdown Monster. Markdown Monster has been for the longest time targeted at .NET 4.6.2, but a while back I started integrating with some libraries that have moved over completely to use .NET Standard. I was hoping by moving to .NET 4.7.1 and more built-in library support for .NET Standard would alleviate the DLL proliferation/duplication that using .NET Standard in full framework seems to entail. Alas that turned out to be a dead end as it didn't help in that respect. But since I moved I figured what the heck, I'll stay on 4.7.1 - over 97% of users of MM are on 4.7.1 or later and there are a number of improvements in the framework that make this probably worthwhile. I shipped the last minor version update 1.15 with a 4.7.1 baseline target. Lockups with the 4.7.x Target A few days later a few oddball bug reports came in on Github Issues. Several existing users were complaining that the new version they just upgraded to was locking up on startup. Sometimes before any UI comes up, sometimes the form loads but is unresponsive (white screen of death). I tried to duplicate, and was unable to. I tried running MM on 4 different machines I have here locally, and a three more virtual machines that I have access to. Nothing failed. Must be a hardware issue, right? We ran into some WPF rendering issues a long while ago due to specific graphics cards, so I figured this must be similar. The fix there was to disable hardware accelleration, but that seemed to have no effect on the affected users. It took a lot of back and forth messages to pin this one down and I finally was able to duplicate the error after I switched my display to scale 150%. 4 machines, none of them failed because they all ran 100% until I switched to 150% when I managed to make two of them fail. It turns out the scaling wasn't the actual issue, but it's something that brought out the problem. Notice how the main window partially loads, but isn't quite complete and stuck half way in the process. This is an insidious bug because of course I didn't think about a system bug, but rather "Shit, what did I break?" Off I go on a rabbit hunt, only to come up blank rolling back code until prior to the last version update which preceeds the move to 4.7.1. Even then I did not make the connection right away. It wasn't until I started searching for similar reports which was tricky given the vague behavior. Several people reported rolling back to 1.14.x releases and not seeing any problems and that time I started to realize that the 4.7.1 target was likely causing the problem. I rolled back and sure enough, running the same exact code in 4.6.2 that was crashing in 4.7.1 caused no problems on any of the machines. I pushed out a quick pre-release and several of the affected people tried it out and they too didn't have problems. We found the problem - yay! Debugging this Issue As you can imagine finding a finicky bug like this is a pain in the ass. It took me forever just to come up with a reproducible scenario. Once I figured out how to reproduce I still was unable to really get any useful information. I'd run the app in the debugger and it would hang. Pause the app and then take a look at the call stack. The call stack wasn't much help either though. It stuck on App.Run() and then off deep into WPF. As you can see there's no user code in the stack, it's basically an infinite loop that keeps re-iterating deep inside of the WPF internals. My search foo also wasn't helping me much. This is a hard issue to search on as WPF freezes are apparently common, but most were relative to perfectly normal situations like an ordinary race condition (LOL). Finally I landed an obscure Github Issue that references a StarDefinitionsCanExceedAvailableSpace setting that was introduced in WPF in 4.7.x. This setting disables a new behavior introduced in 4.7.x that more efficiently crashes - uh, I mean manages WPF Grid sizing. This funky app.config runtime configuration setting can roll back the new behavior to the old behavior found in 4.6.x. And that's another fix that worked and still allows staying with 4.7.1 without being hit by this bug. In my case I ended up rolling back to 4.6.1 anyway though. As mentioned the 4.7.1 move didn't get me what I wanted (less DLL dependencies from .NET Standard references) and for deployment on Chocolatey running anything past 4.6.2 complicates the automated installer testing they do to verify packages as it requires a .NET Runtime update to their clean virtual machine. For now problem solved - after a harrowing week that probably turned away tons of people from Markdown Monster cause it crashed 😒 If you're interested you can follow the whole Markdown Monster paper trail on this issue in this GitHub issue: HiDPI Display w/Scaling Can Cause App Freeze on Launch Thanks to those that stuck through all the back and forth and tried to help me figure out what was going on. You guys are awesome! Here's some more info on the resolution. WPF Grid Sizing Bug in .NET 4.7.x Long story short, I managed to duplicate the bug by having a high scale mode and all users that reported the issue also were using high scale modes. But, it turns out the scale mode wasn't the actual cause of the failure, but rather a symptom which was exacerbated by scaling the display. The problem is a bug in .NET 4.7.1 that is specific to applications that are targeted at .NET 4.7.x and hit a specific sizing issues. It's a Grid sizing bug caused by infinite loop entered due to a very minute rounding error. This bug occurs only if your application targets .NET 4.7.x - if you target 4.6.x or now 4.8.x (it's fixed there) the problem does not occur. So you can target 4.6.x and run on 4.7.x and there is no problem. But if you target 4.7.x and run on 4.7.x that's when there's a potential problem. The final outcome and summary of the problem is best summarized by Sam Bent from Microsoft in a separate Github issue: The gist of that summary is that when an app is compiled for 4.7.x there's a possibility that grid sizing can cause the application to seize up in an infinite loop that can lock up an application hard. Workarounds and Solutions There are a few ways to work around this problem: Rollback your build target to a pre-4.7.x release Use the StarDefinitionsCanExceedAvailableSpace Wait for .NET 4.8 Rolling Back Rolling back was the solution I used, because I didn't find out about the availability of the switch until after I rolled back, and because frankly I didn't see much benefit by staying on 4.7.1. It was important to get this resolved quickly that's where it sits today for me with Markdown Monster. Using the StarDefinitionsCanExceedAvailableSpace Override This setting overrides the new GridRendering behavior and basically lets you run with a .NET 4.7.x target in your project, but keeps the old behavior that was used in previous versions. There is a configuration setting that can be set in app.config for your application: <configuration> <runtime> <AppContextSwitchOverrides value="Switch.System.Windows.Controls.Grid.StarDefinitionsCanExceedAvailableSpace=true" /> </runtime> </configuration> I can verify that using that switch lets me run 4.7.1 and not see the lock up in any scaling mode. After I had my running version in 4.6.2 back, I once again moved up to 4.7.1 in a separate branch to try this out and sure enough the switch made the application run targeted with 4.7.1. So there's a hacky workaround. It's a workaround though. This 'fix' according to Microsoft improves grid rendering allocations, providing more precise sizing and also improves performance and reduces memory usage. On paper this is a great improvement, but... well, side effects 😃 I suspect this issue is not wildly common as there was not very much info to be found about it. I think Markdown Monster makes this issue come up because the startup sequence has a lot of window manipulation. MM uses the MahApps UI framework which uses Window Animation and extra rendering frames for the main window, and MM itself moves the window offscreen for initial render and adjusts window sizing based on screen sizes and DPI settings if the window doesn't fit on the screen or would otherwise be offscreen. IOW, there's a bit of gyration to get the initial window onto the screen that is more likely to hit this bug than a simple WPF form. So I doubt that every application needs to worry about this, but if you have a 4.7.x WPF app it might be a good idea to try it out at various resolutions and scale levels just to see how it fares. .NET 4.8 Fixes this Bug I haven't tried this myself as I don't have .NET 4.8 installed yet, but according to Sam and Vatsan from Microsoft it appears this WPF bug has been fixed in .NET 4.8. Yay! But also not so Yay, because it'll take a while before we can target 4.8 apps and expect a decent user base for general release application. It sure would be nice if this bug fix could be patched back into 4.7. 4.7 has the vast majority of .NET runtime user base today and it'll probably be quite a while before we can target 4.8 for public release applications when 4.8 reaches critical mass. Recent Windows 10 auto-updates help but that only applies to Windows 10 users (which luckily in MM is most of them, but for other more mainstream apps is probably not the case). In the meantime this insidious bug can catch a lot of developers off guard with a really hard to track down bug. Hopefully this post might help pointing people in the right direction. Summary It's always a bummer to see bugs like this creep up. It sure seems like a major bug, but again searching turned up almost no hits which makes me think that not a lot of people are hitting this issue. Maybe most people target lower versions of .NET as I do - it seems I'm always targeting one point version behind the current latest version and that might account for the relatively low hit rate. Still it's disconcerting to hit a bug like this that's so random and yet sounds like it could potentially hit just about any app. After all who's not using WPF Grids everywhere in a WPF application, it would seem difficult not to hit this at some point if it's random calculation error. I'd be interested to hear about others that have run into this issue and under what circumstances. If you have please leave a comment with your story. I hope writing this down will make it easier for people to find this info in the future - I sure would have appreciated this instead of a week of lots of harried customer bug reports and no answers for them (and actually being a bit high and mighty with my Works on my Machine attitude). this post created and published with Markdown Monster © Rick Strahl, West Wind Technologies, 2005-2019Posted in WPF   Feb 15 Designmodo The 5 Critical Elements That can Make or Break Your One-Page Website’s Design You're reading The 5 Critical Elements That can Make or Break Your One-Page Website’s Design, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! It seems obvious that one-page websites would be much easier to build than multi-page ones. In truth, it can often be much harder to make a one-pager user-friendly and at the same time visually appealing. It’s not usual for a … Feb 14 Harold Davis Apparently Home to Manatees and More After my workshop in West Palm Beach, I had a morning to explore south Florida. I rented a car, and drove through scrub and pre-Everglades marsh inland to Lake Okeechobee—seemingly big enough to count as an inland sea with the further shore invisible in the distant horizon, and apparently home to manatees. Heading down the […] Feb 13 Designmodo Startup 3 Coming Soon You're reading Startup 3 Coming Soon, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! We told you it was coming, and now we’ll give you a sneak peek into the release of Startup 3, (read about our plans for 2019 here). Today, you’re getting the first information about the new Startup 3 🚀. Feb 13 Premier Developer AZ 203 Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure Study Guide In this post, App Dev Manager Isaac Levin shares some tips about how to best prepare for the AZ-203 exam. Intro As a Microsoft employee who works with customers and a cloud enthusiast, I see it essential to be knowledgeable of how the cloud can bring the best value to the developer. The post AZ 203 Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure Study Guide appeared first on Premier Developer. Feb 13 Harold Davis Cutting Corners In Mounts Botanical Gardens of Palm Beach County, Florida an impressive exhibit of an installation by stick-work artist Patrick Dougherty was showcased when I visited recently. I’m always interested in doors, windows, and openings, particularly when they can be seen in progression one within the other, so it was great fun to photograph this stick work […] Feb 13 Premier Developer AZ 203 Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure Study Guide As a Microsoft employee who works with customers and a cloud enthusiast, I see it essential to be knowledgeable of how the cloud can bring the best value to the developer. Because of this, I am taking the AZ 203 exam, which is titled “Developing Solutions for Microsoft Azure”. This exam was in beta for some time and was recently released proper in January 2019. Developers used to the Microsoft certification world will see this exam as a replacement for 70-532, which is the older iteration of Azure technology geared for developers. Passing this exam will reward developers with the “Microsoft Certified Azure Developer Associate” certification. Going forward, most Microsoft certifications are moving to a job-role based (great take by Chris Pietschmann at Build Azure) approach, which in my opinion is a good move, as it allows folks to focus on passing exams that contain content that will directly be used on the job. Feb 12 UX Movement Porkbun: Get a Free .design Domain Name Thinking of building a professional design portfolio? A .design domain name is the perfect way to build your own brand and showcase your work. Feb 12 Designmodo Tiny Trend: Mouse Interactions You're reading Tiny Trend: Mouse Interactions, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! Micro-interactions were one of the biggest trends in 2017. Like a Bitcoin, it was the talk of the office. We happened to witness not just willingness, but eagerness, of developers to change the UX to something better. Slowly, we are … Feb 12 Harold Davis Looking down the frond What you may find a little different about this photo of a palm frond is the viewpoint: my macro lens is looking straight down the frond, so that it looks almost like a causeway of some kind, with the vanishing point down where the frond meets earth, although this junction isn’t visible, and everything other […] Feb 11 Designmodo Sit at a Computer All Day? You Need These Glasses You're reading Sit at a Computer All Day? You Need These Glasses, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! If you are anything like me, you probably sit in front of a computer most of the day. (That’s just the nature of design work.) And as much as we get up, move around and do other things, there are … Feb 10 Rick Strahl's Web Log Ad Blockers, Brave Browser and BrainTree Credit Card Processing SDKs I just ran into an interesting issue with my Web Store. On my site I use a custom Web Store and the payment integration is going through BrainTree's CC Processing APIs. Braintree has both server side and client side SDKs and the site uses the JavaScript SDK to remotely render the partial payment form into the overall order form. These days it's a pretty common scenario to use a JavaScript SDK that essentially removes the payment detail handling on the server so that the server never actually touches the credit card data. The SDK and the remote hosted form keeps the credit card data on BrainTree's server which reduces the risk of credit cards getting hacked during the payment process. Or, if something does go wrong the responsibility lies with the processor since they are the ones handling the Credit Card transaction data. Good News, Bad News The good news is works very well. Order processing is very quick through this remote interface and with BrainTree at least as a bonus you can process PayPal requests just as you do Credit Cards using the exact same process with a different 'card type' - no need to use a separate PayPal order flow. Nice. But - and there's always a but - today I noticed a fairly major problem: For the last few months I've been using the Brave Browser for most of my Web browsing. Brave is a Chromium based browser that provides most of the features of Chrome without Google tracking you each step of your browsing adventures. Brave also provides built-in ad-blocking by default so overall the browsing experience out of box is much better than you get in stock Google Chrome, because a lot of the crap ad content that makes up a good part of the Web these days is not being loaded. When visiting one of the payment pages in my store with Brave, I noticed that the payment page wasn't working. Basically the remote payment form wasn't showing up. Here is a side by side figure of Chrome and Brave of the same order form page: (Chrome on the left, Brave on the right): Notice that Brave doesn't render the payment form and if I open the DevTools I can see that it's failing because of CORS policy. My first thought is that something was wrong with BrainTree's CORS policy that they are pushing down to my site, because typically CORS errors are related to missing sites in the content policy and CORS headers that are returned from the target SDK server. Content Blocking in Brave But alas it turns out that the problem isn't really the CORS headers but rather the fact that Brave is blocking third party cookies. Now, I can now go in and manually disable that option and then get the page to work properly: I had to enable All Cookies Allowed to enable third party cookies, which BrainTree is using to handle the internal order flow it uses between the JavaScript client component and its servers. This is likely to be a problem with not just Brave Browser, but any content/ad blocker since third party cookies are a primary source of identity tracking. Unfortunately in this case the third party cookie is required for operation of the order form and not for tracking purposes. Now What? So while there's a workaround to the non-loading page, it's not really something that a user can readily figure out which is a pretty big problem for an order form, especially if the user was ready to pay. The last thing we want to do at that point is make the user go - "wait what" or worse "WTF?"... So, how to address this problem? Server Side Processing I'm not sure if there's a real technical solution unless you want to fall back to server side processing which for security reasons is not a good idea. In my custom store I can actually process either server side or using the client form. But because of the PCI requirements and liabilities, falling back to the server side processing is simply not an option for me. However, this might be for a larger company that has gone through their own PCI certification. Documentation The only other solution I see is to provide some help to the user should they find themselves in this situation. I've added a link to the form that takes the user to a documentation page that describes what they should see and with some explanation on turning off content blockers. This is not very satisfying but hopefully it might help keep people who hit this problem on the site and get them to disable their content blockers. Summary Ah - progress. By offloading payment processing to a remote service I've solved one thorny problem (PCI) and now I've potentially brought in another problem that might keep some customers from being able to place an order. It seems that no matter how you turn things with security, there is always some sort of trade off. If you're using a browser like Brave you are probably fairly technically savy. It's also very likely that you will eventually run into problems like this with other sites. These days there is so much integration between applications using APIs that require remote scripts and third party cookie integrations and content blockers likely will become a more common problem for users in that more and more legitimate content will end up getting blocked. This whitelisting takes a little work, but it's usually still better than the alternative of getting flooded with ads and trackers. The hard part is realizing that it's happening. In using Brave I often simply forget that it's blocking stuff and when stuff fails my first reaction is that Brave is not doing the right thing, when really it's the content blocker. For less savvy users this is especially the case since they have no idea why a page doesn't work right and thinking of turning the content blocking off won't come natural. Heck it didn't come as the first thought to me - I googled CORS issues with BrainTree initially, before trying a different browser 😃. Carry on... this post created and published with Markdown Monster © Rick Strahl, West Wind Technologies, 2005-2019Posted in Web  Credit Card Processing   Feb 9 UX Movement Mobile Icon Design for Faster Visual Search Icons have many uses on a mobile interface. You can use them to call attention to information, signify a state, or represent task actions. When representing task actions, the icons become buttons. Feb 7 Rick Strahl's Web Log Finding the ProgramFiles64 Folder in a 32 Bit App You probably know that on Windows using .NET you can use System.Environment.GetFolderPath() to pick out a host of special Windows folders. You can find Local App Data, Programs, My Documents, Pictures and so on using the Environment.SpecialFolder enum . This function is needed because these special folders often are localized and using this function ensures that the paths are properly adjusted for various localized versions of Windows. You don't ever want to be building special paths by hand as they are likely to break if you run on a differently localized version of Windows. For example here's a link that shows what Program Files in Windows looks like in different languages: Bottom line is if you need to access Windows special folders always use the GetFolderPath() function and then build your path from there with Path.Combine(). While the function works well there are a number of common paths missing, and some others are a little quirky. Using ProgramFiles and ProgramFiles32 One of those quirks is the Program Files folder. There are two Program Files folders in Windows the 64 bit versions of Windows most of us are running today: Program Files Program Files (x86) Here's what this looks like on disk off the C:\ root: Program Files is for 64 bit apps, and Program Files (x86) is for 32 bit apps on 64 bit systems. On 32 Bit systems there's only Program Files which holds 32 bit applications and there's no support for 64 bit applications at all. On 64 bit machines, the Program Files location where applications install changes the behaviors of Windows launchers. For example if you compile a .NET Desktop application with Any CPU and you launch from Program Files (x86) you'll launch as a 32 bit app. Launch from Program Files and you'll launch as a 64 bit application. Windows provides a launching process some hints that suggest whether the app should run 32 or 64 bit modes. Special Folders So the System.Environment.SpecialFolder enum has values that seem pretty obvious choices for finding those two folders: ProgramFiles ProgramFilesX86 But it's never that simple... Quick, what does the following return when you run your application as a 32 bit application (on 64 bit Windows): var pf86 = Environment.GetFolderPath(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFiles); var folder = System.IO.Path.Combine(pf86, "SmartGit\\bin"); var exe = System.IO.Path.Combine(folder, "smartgit.exe"); exe.Dump(); File.Exists(exe).Dump(); Here's a hint: Not what you'd expect. In fact in a 32 bit application you'll find this to be true: var pf86 = Environment.GetFolderPath(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFilesX86); var pf = Environment.GetFolderPath(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFiles); Assert.AreEqual(pf,pf86); // true! Now repeat this with a 64 bit application: var pf86 = Environment.GetFolderPath(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFilesX86); var pf = Environment.GetFolderPath(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFiles); Assert.AreEqual(pf,pf86); // false Got that? It's confusing, but in its own twisted way this makes sense. A 32 bit application assumes it's running on a 32 bit system and should look for program files in the Program Files (x86) folder so it returns that folder for ProgramFiles because that's all it knows - 1 folder where 32 bit applications live. Using 32 bit mode and the SpecialFolder enum there's no way to actually discover the true 64 bit Program Files folder. Ouch! The Workaround - Using Environment Var These days you'd be hard pressed to find a 32 bit version of Windows. Most people run 64 bit versions. So if you run a 32 bit application on a 64 bit version of Windows you can use the following code to get the 'real' Program Files folder: var pf86 = Environment.GetEnvironmentVariable("ProgramW6432"); if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(pf86)) pf86 = Environment.GetFolder(Environment.SpecialFolder.ProgramFiles) This gives you the 64 bit Program Files path in a 32 bit application. If the environment variable doesn't exist because you're running an old or 32 bit version of Windows, the code falls back to SpecialFolder.ProgramFiles so it should still work in those environments as well. Practicalities - Why is this a Problem If you're running a 64 bit application there really is no problem. In 64 bit mode ProgramFiles returns the Program Files folder and ProgramFilesX86 returns the Program Files (x86) folder. Problem solved right? Yeah - for 64 bit. But... if you have a a 32 bit application as I do with Markdown Monster you need to use the environment variable to retrieve the right Program Files path. You might say - just use 64 bit, but in the case of Markdown Monster I run in 32 bit in order to get better performance and stability out of the Web Browser control that is heavily used in this application. 64 bit IE was always a train wreck and the Web Browser control reflects that. So the app runs in 32 bit mode, but I'm also shelling out and launching a number of other applications: I open command lines (Powershell or Command) for the user, run Git commands, open a GUI git client, various viewers like Image Viewers, explicitly launch browsers and so forth. The apps that are being launched are a mix of 32 and 64 bit applications. In the example above I open SmartGit which is my GUI Git Client of choice and it's a 64 bit app, hence I need to build a path for it. Using the code above lets me do that. Summary I'm writing this down because I've run into this more than a few times and each and every time I go hunting for the solution because I forgot exactly I did to get around it. Now I can just search for this post - maybe it'll help you remember too 😃 this post created and published with Markdown Monster © Rick Strahl, West Wind Technologies, 2005-2019Posted in .NET   Feb 6 Designmodo Improving the UX with Userstack API You're reading Improving the UX with Userstack API, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! Userstack is a REST API, designed by apilayer, the developer behind amazing tools such as ipapi or streetlayer. The API reveals important data sets about the users visiting your websites such as their browser, OS or device in an easy … Feb 4 Harold Davis Free Presentation: Photographing Flowers for Transparency I’ll be talking about my Photographing Flowers for Transparency work, showing images, and discussing the process at a free presentation at the North Berkeley Public Library Community Meeting Room on Thursday March 28, 2019 at 5:30 PM. Please join me for a fun and “floriffic” evening! What: Harold Davis presents images, thoughts, and tips related to his Photographing […] Feb 1 Premier Developer UX is not UI, but UI is definitely UX When I first joined the Premier team here at Microsoft, a lot of the work I initially did for our customers was just that – advisory front-end design work. After many discussions about how I can provide value to our customers, I started to realize that even though words likes User Experience and User Centered Design are starting to be thrown out more and more in development, very few people have a full grasp of what exactly User Experience is. Jan 31 Harold Davis Paris in the Spring! There is still time… Photograph Paris in April with Harold Davis (co-host Mark Brokering), April 27-May 5, 2019; explore and photograph the City of Light; Destination Photography Workshop includes several excursions, including after-hours photography exclusive to artists at Monet’s gardens at Giverny. Click here for more information and here for the Reservation Form; what a great time of year to visit […] Jan 30 Designmodo 19 Free Fonts You’ll Want to Use in 2019, Trends and Examples You're reading 19 Free Fonts You’ll Want to Use in 2019, Trends and Examples, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! Every new year comes with lists of new design trends and techniques you’ll be using in the months to come. But what about typography? While type trends are often parts of these lists, there aren’t as many devoted to fonts … Jan 30 Harold Davis Approaching Indigo The early use of “indigo” referred to indigo dye made from Indigofera tinctoria and related species, and not specifically to a color. In the 1660s, Isaac Newton bought a pair of prisms at a fair near Cambridge, England. Around this time, the East India Company had begun importing indigo dye, replacing native woad as the primary source […] Jan 29 Premier Developer Paired Programming & Visual Studio Live Share My first experience matched many of experiences I remember mentioned in the books I read. At first, paired programming was extremely intimidating. I had to pair with an extremely seasoned developer thinking that I was about to be proved that I was not as smart as I thought I was - see Imposter Syndrome. Well, I learned many lessons from this developer by pairing with him. And in the end the developer learned quite a bit from me. Jan 25 Designmodo 7 Websites to Find Free Creative Commons Music and Sounds You're reading 7 Websites to Find Free Creative Commons Music and Sounds, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! One of the most significant mistakes many creatives make is the failure to promote their work. You can have the best product in the world, the greatest app ever, or the most beautiful WordPress theme, but if you don’t showcase … Jan 24 Rick Strahl's Web Log Back to Basics: Non-Navigating Links for JavaScript Handling When you're creating <a href> links that are non-navigating and handled via script code or through some JavaScript framework, how exactly do you create that link on the page? I'm talking about plain vanilla HTML/JavaScript here, not about what happens when you use any JS frameworks which usually add special handling for links. The problem here is that if you create a link without an href attribute the link won't show typical link behavior. So this: <h1>Link Display</h1> <a>Link without an href attribute</a> | <a href="#0">Link with href</a> | renders to the following with the default browser styling: Notice that the 'link-less' link renders without link styling. So when using dynamic navigation via event handlers or jQuery etc. you need to make sure that you explicitly specifiy some sort of link in the href attribute. If you're using a UI framework like BootStrap it will still style missing href links properly. But the default HTML styles render anchors without href with link styling that doesn't trigger the text-decoration styling. If you're using a JavaScript framework like Angular, Vue, React etc. those frameworks will automatically fix up links and provide the empty navigation handling as well, so the discussion here centers on vanilla JS and HTML. The Short Answer: href="#0" I've been using various approaches over the years, but probably the cleanest and least visually offensive solution is to use a hash to a non-existing name reference in a page. So this is what I've settled on: <a href="#0">Fly, fly, fly away</a> I like this because: It doesn't navigate It makes it obvious that this it's a do-nothing navigation Link looks reasonable on the status bar It doesn't flag security scanners I actually found out that this works only recently and previously I had been using a slew of other approaches, which is what prompted me to write this up. For a little more background lets take a look. Empty HREF Link Navigation Ok, so what options are there? There quite a few actually, some better than others. I would argue some of these aren't an option, but I'll list them anyway: <a href=""> <a href="#"> <a href="#" onclick="return false;" /> <a href="javascript:void(0)"> <a href="javascript:{}"> <a href="#0"> Until recently I've been using #5, but just recently discovered that #6 is actually possible and which to me is preferrable. Here's a little HTML you can experiment with (CodePen): <h1>Link Display</h1> <ul> <li><a href="">Normal Web link</a></li> <li><a>Link without an href attribute</a></li> <li><a href="">Link with empty href attribute</a></li> <li><a href="#0">Link with href and `#0`</a></li> <li><a href="javascript:void(0)">Link with JavaScript: tag</a></li> </ul> Don't use an empty HREF Empty HREF links might be tempting but they are problematic as they basically mean re-navigate the current page. It's like a Refresh operation which resubmits to the server. Notice that an empty HREF renders as a link with a target URL pointing back to the current page: This can be deceiving on small pages as you may not actually notice the page is navigating. Empty HREF links are useful for a few things, just not for dynamic navigation scenarios. It's a good choice for Refresh this Page style links, or for <form href="" method="POST"> form submissions which posts back to the same URL. Don't use # by itself As it turns out the second choice is the most commonly used in examples and demonstrations, but this is usually not a good choice because this syntax: <a href="#">Link Text</a> actually is not a do-nothing navigation. It causes navigation to the the top of the page. Unless your page is small enough to fit into a single Viewport screen, or every handled link actually explicitly aborts navigation (more on that below), you don't want to use this option. Handling onclick and Returning false One way you can prevent navigation is to implement an click/onclick JavaScript event handler and return false from it. Alternately you can use event.preventDefault() inside the click event's event object passed into the handler too. While that works, it's easy to forget (unless you use a JavaScript framework that likely handles this for you). If you are already using handler this is Ok, but otherwise one of the other options is a better choice. javascript: Tags Another way to do this is to provide essentially a null JavaScript link. There are a number of variations for this: <a href="javascript:void(0)"> <a href="javascript:{}">` <a href="javascript:null">` These all function just fine, but they show some nasty looking links in the status bar as the javascript: text is displayed. The links and text are harmless as they literally do nothing, but it's ugly, and to the average non-Web savvy person probably a bit scary. Note that strict security standards - specifically Content Security Policy (CSP) - don't permit javascript: links and they are disabled. javascript: links are disabled so this would still work actually, but during a security audit the javascript links would still show up. And the Winner is: #0 The best solution to me is href="#0". Mainly because it does nothing, uses simple text and shows no scary looking link in the status bar unlike the javascript: links above. This approach works by using a non existing hash link. Unless you have a named link or an ID named 0 - which is unlikely - the navigation fails, which effectively does nothing. No navigation and no scrolling. If for some strange reason you have an ID or named link called 0 use a different non-existing value for the hash: #foo123 works too 😃 Most Frameworks handle this automatically The cleanest and often automatic solution is using a framework that explicitly handles link navigation for you so you don't have to think about it. All major frameworks like Angular, Vue, React, Ember etc. handle links automatically by short circuiting link navigation in the attached wrapped JavaScript event handlers. So if you're using these frameworks you usually don't set the href attribute at all and let the framework handle that for you, both in terms of styling and the navigation. Summary This is pretty basic stuff, but it's easy to forget which choices work and which sort of work or provide ugly results. I know I've gone back and forth on this many times in the past before I recently settled on: <a href="#0">Dynamic Navigation</a> which seems the cleanest solution. © Rick Strahl, West Wind Technologies, 2005-2019Posted in HTML  Javascript   Jan 21 Designmodo Top 17 Web Design and UI Trends for 2019 You're reading Top 17 Web Design and UI Trends for 2019, originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! New year, new time to think about web design trends. The start of the year is a great time to look back on the previous year and your successes and look ahead to things that you want to improve and … Jan 15 Harold Davis Harold’s LAB Color Action: New Version Available I am feeling smug that I still have some decent computer skills. The last time I updated this Photoshop Action (a kind of macro using Photoshop’s internal scripting language) was a decade ago, for the publication of The Photoshop Darkroom. The updated Action (Version 01.09.2019) contains some new usability features, and two new LAB color […] Jan 12 Designmodo A Look Back at 2018. Our Plans for 2019. You're reading A Look Back at 2018. Our Plans for 2019., originally posted on Designmodo. If you've enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! A year in review is a great way to compile everything and appreciate how much we have accomplished in the previous year. In this post, we’ll take a look back at 2018 and share our plans for 2019. Jan 10 Harold Davis Before the LAB Color Creates I’m using this image as one of the starting examples for the new course I am recording next week on working with creative LAB color in Photoshop. Click here for my existing online courses! Jan 8 Harold Davis Marble, Don’t Jump! The marble languidly perches on the cornice of the volumes of the collected New Yorker cartoons, high above the carpet. “Marble, don’t jump, ” I cry, as I spring into action with my new Laowa 24mm f/14 2X Macro Probe. One of my first impulses when I started to learn to use this unique but […] Jan 7