July 2007

How to fix Venetian Blinds with their own parts [solved]

Here’s a tutorial on how to fix venetian blinds with their own parts. It involves shortening them.

blinds before after

My cats like to look out the window, blinds be damned. They’ve crawled through and destroyed most of the blinds in my apartment.

blinds broken

I went to home depot and asked if they sold the individual plastic pieces to fix blinds, and they didn’t. I would have had to buy full new blinds, but using this method didn’t have to buy anything. Otherwise I’d be out of most of my apartment security deposit.

You’ll need: scissors and something pokey.

There are two plastic pegs on the bottom of the bottom bar. Pull those out.

blinds pegs

Inside is the knot that stops the pull string from being pulled through. Cut it off.

blinds pull string knot

Unthread the pull cords from the bottom bar and bottom blinds up to the last blind that’s broken. Slide out the broken blinds.

blinds pull out broken pieces

Now you have a gap where the blinds used to be. But my blinds were too long for my window – actually most of them were in my apartment.

blinds gap

Grab some of the extra full ones from the bottom. If your blinds aren’t too long, decide if you’re ok with shortening them a little. Also, check around and see if your apartment has any other ‘donor’ blinds that are the same size that you could use.

blinds bottom extras

Now just slide the donor blinds into the missing spots.

blinds slide extras in

Slide the bottom bar into the lowest unused rung of the laddars. Now, this is the only remotely hard part: Thread the pull cord back through the blinds and into the bottom bar. The pokey comes in handy for this.

Then, cut off the excess bottom ladder below the bottom bar.

blinds cut extra

Tie a knot in each of the pull cords inside the bottom bar. Try and make them even with each other, keeping in mind that when you yank on them you pull each drawstring at the top up. Cut off the excess pull cord, stuff the excess cord back into the bar and plug the holes back up with the pegs.

Ta daaaaaaaaaa!

blinds fixed

Now the blinds are probably actually the right size too. Remember to clean them too while you’re at it! :)

Label a mix before import on Itunes [solved]

So your friend makes you a CD mix, and it’s great, but when you want to import the CD it’s a pain in the ass because the mix doesn’t exist in the CDDB database, so Itunes can’t automatically label your songs.

I try and make people make me data MP3 mixes or at least CD mixes with CD text for this reason.

Nonetheless, you probablly still have CD mixes that don’t have the artist, album or song data on them that you want to import.

As far as I know there’s still no automatic way to do track-by-track detection on MP3s.

Here’s a tip though – before you import, click on the CD, select all, get info, and fill out the mix name in the album field. Then hit save and then import. Now at least you can group those tracks by album in your library, and you have half a chance of finding that track later and asking your friend what the heck it is. Better than a million TRACK 01 TRACK 02 files in your library that you don’t know where they came from.

I thought you wouldn’t be able to label the tracks since CDs are read only and won’t save an ID3 tag on the CD, but here’s where Itunes’ use of its library XML file comes in handy. If you know the artist and album info for some of the tracks, go for it, it is possible to label the artist, title, and other fields of the tracks before you import them.

label album before import cd mix

msn messenger-tips.com scam [solved]

I got this IM from a coworker today:
Check out this web http://my-msn.servebeer.com it tells you who deleted or blocked you from their MSN

I click on the link and it redirects me to messenger-tips.com. messenger-tips.com asks me for my login info. Red flag!

I don’t know whether or not it actually tells if people blocked you or not, but if you do provide your login info, it logs in as you, kicks you off IM, and spams everyone in your contact list with the same message. Who knows what they do with your login info. But it’s a little scary to get IMs from friends/coworkers that aren’t from them. Needless to say, this is a scam.

Don’t give any person or site your login info that asks for it out of the blue! If you do get scammed by this, change your MSN password, and probably any other accounts that you use that same password with (you know you do).

Itunes, Safari, Firefox, others quit with Runtime Error [unsolved]

I’ve been getting this error more and more on my XP machines lately.

Runtime Error!
Program: C:\Program Files\iTunes\iTunes.exe

This application has requested the Runtime to terminate it in an unusual way.
Please contact the application's support team for more information.

Apple’s software in particular has been giving me this problem. I found this thread which simply states to update itunes with software update:
http://forums.techguy.org/multimedia/581031-itunes-runtime-error.html

That’s good for the constant itunes crash, which was happening every time I opened the application. One thing that sucks is that this FORCES you to upgrade iTunes, and ‘upgrades’ have been generally more and more restrictive downgrades with iTunes lately. (Wonder if this was partly intentional on Apple’s part.)

What this doesn’t solve though is why it keeps happening with other applications. What library is getting corrupted I wonder? Why does it happen sporadically with firefox and safari as well on two of my different XP machines?