Beemer (dr_tectonic) wrote,

3 Things I Done With Computers What Made Me Feel Smrt Today

1. Had my laptop open during a talk this morning. (Because the talk, while interesting, did not require my full attention to absorb, and neither did sifting through my inbox. So I figured I'd do both at once. I was good and made sure to look at the speaker a lot.) Someone asked "how many customers does PSNH serve?" So I googled it. Wasn't fast enough to provide an answer before the speaker had a guesstimate, but afterward I was able to tell the questioner and the speaker "475,000+ homes and businesses, according to their website". "Wow, did you look that up real-time?" "Yup."

The added benefit here is that not only did I produce an authoritative answer as if by magic, in doing so I built support for the illusion that I bring my laptop to meetings because it allows me to do Relevant and Productive things! (This is only true some of the time. The rest of the time, it's because I Hate General-Purpose Meetings and it lets me pretend to take notes while actually doing something much more interesting.)

2. Realized that I can use my newfound SQL query skills to find out which users have actually downloaded the datafile that is missing data and needs to be replaced and then email them and tell them that it was bad and they should download it again, rather than just putting up a notice on the download page which they may or may not see, and which will only distract all the people that didn't download it before it was fixed. OMG! This is so the better solution!

3. Added a bunch of links to a webpage in a whirl of efficiency. Grabbed source from another page that had tables listing short and long names, deleted all the non-table bits, then used the voodoo of regexp-replace in emacs to morph the table markup into tab-delimited columns. Cut out the two relevant columns, used rects and replace-strings to change it into a perl hash, tossed it into some recycled scripting framework, and greppity-var, all the short names on the page now link to the appropriate long name anchors in an entirely separate document. And all in time for the email I was writing about it to not be lying!

As you may have guessed, barring some residual stomach pain, I'm feeling much better after having taken the day off yesterday.

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