Saturday, November 22, 2014

So Much for That Prediction

All hope that Metallica would play a brand-new song can now be considered wasted effort. To conclude their week-long residency, they played "Sad But True," as shown below.

Damnit! I wanted a new song!

Converting Resumes

I am looking at needing to eliminate 14, 961 duplicate files from my music folders. Previously, I mentioned that I had approximately 200 CDs remaining to convert. While I work on weeding out duplicates, I have the Toshiba laptop ripping CDs. It's kind of fun as I am ripping Life CDs and while the CD rips, the CD is played so I get to listen to music. The Eagles are playing the acoustic version of "Hotel California" with that awesome percussion groove under the acoustic guitar.

Notes from Career Panel

I was asked by Mount Mercy University English professor Carol Tyx to be a member of a panel of MMU alumni that were English majors. The purpose of the panel was to discuss our careers. Prior to the panel, Carol emailed me a set of questions and, using those questions as prompts, I created the following content. This is a selfish post, one that specifies a lot of details about myself and my career journey. To prepare for posting my notes to this blog, I did some minor editing just because it's my blog and I can do that since I own the content.

Career Panel Thursday Nov. 20 2:00-3:00 109 Warde

What has been your employment journey since graduating from Mt. Mercy?

Context First

I came to Mount Mercy College in fall of 1988. My goal was to be a high school English teacher. I did a semester of Student teaching in Fall 1991. I did not like teaching – stories could be told about being slapped by a student, breaking up a fight, and going through a faith crisis at the same time - what am I doing here on earth? What purpose do I serve?

To summarize, those are the “highlights” of the “Dark Time of my Life” and by the time I graduated in May 1992, I had concluded teaching was not a career for me.

Since I had gone through my college education with a focus on being a teacher, it was difficult when I realized I had no idea what I could do with my degree.

I began my job search in February 1992 and it ended 3 years later in February 1995 and during those 3 years, I applied to many companies for many positions in many cities.

During the time that I didn’t have a permanent, full-time job, many life events:
  • Proposed to my wife in June 1992
  • Married my wife in August of 1993.
  • We purchased first house in April 1994.
Miscellaneous non-technical writer employment
  • Telemarketer at APAC
  • Temporary data entry clerk at ACT (Iowa City)
  • Software Quality Assurance Testing at ACT (Iowa City)
  • Got an awesome letter of recommendation from manager!

First Technical Writer position NDP (Cedar Rapids)

Interview at 8 AM on Friday, February 10, 1995 & signed job offer letter before noon. Words of advice: Always negotiate salary. I was offered $17,500, which was low, so I countered up to $18,000. I should have asked for more. The VP I was interviewing with said that I would have to work that much harder for that extra $500.
Two recurring themes in my career:

  • Networking 
    • The only reason I even knew about this company was through a friend. My wife and I had a New Year’s Eve party on 12/31/1994. Invited several friends (MMC alumni). One friend was having a “good time” and started talking about how he worked for a great company. If he hadn’t been at our house that night, I would have never known of their existence. There was never a job ad for the position I applied for.
  • Focus on content. 
    • Don’t rewrite or rephrase what someone tells you should be told to the end user. You should be knowledgeable about your subject so that you pick and choose those details that the user needs.

I worked there for 3 years.

Second Job: Jordan Systems

Jordan Systems had a product that was PC-based software, not AS/400.

Do not fail to value networking! Worked with a MMC alumni who lived on my dorm floor my freshman, sophomore, and junior years. Software on an AS/400 with an interface to a PC. AS/400 used to be a popular platform in the area and you could take programming courses at Kirkwood, but it has since been reduced in popularity and use (at least from my perspective).
Worked there from 2/10/98 – 9/30/98.
Working there was interesting. I had my own office, but it was a small company that had money issues. We used to sit around the lunch table and hope the mailman would bring a check from a customer so that payroll could be met. Went through layoffs – it was a choice between me and a co-worker. Part of not being laid off was the understanding that I would stop doing my technical writing duties and start doing data entry because the company generated revenue from data entry whereas technical writing was an overhead cost.

Third job: Quintrex Data Systems

There was a major life event upcoming: we were expecting our second child and financial security was a must. I sent in a resume for a classified ad in the Cedar Rapids Gazette for a QA Tester. Ad mentioned AS/400 experience a plus. Networking again! The Vice President was a neighbor from birth until about third grade, but he knows my parents and knew me. I worked there a dozen years. My first day was 10/1/1998 and I submitted my resignation on 10/15/2010. A lot of my time at Quintrex was awesome. I was the only dedicated technical writer so I .carved a niche and definitely nested. I was able to branch out into Marketing writing, User Interface design for Windows, and all sorts of other tasks like release distribution (paper copies of instructions & burning multiple CDs). My primary work was to maintain end-user and internal documentation for all their systems. There was a lot of content - multiple 500 sheet reams of paper. I requested and then was sent to conferences in Boston (2004) and Long Beach, CA (2007). I had to adapt to technology changes. The online Help was distributed in a file format called WinHelp. However, Microsoft announced that they were ending support of WinHelp with Windows Vista. This caused a conversion from MS Word to HTML.

This is an important part of my career. Why would I want to leave a good thing and go somewhere else? At the time, these were my reasons I decided to look for a new position outside of Quintrex
  1. The company served the Telecommunications industry with software to landline companies.
  2. CEO was 65 and refused to reveal his plans
  3. There was a subtle change in company culture – documentation isn’t important.

Epilogue: After I left

  1. Company was purchased by St. Louis-based NISC
  2. The technical writer that was hired to replace me died from a leg clot
  3. CEO who wouldn’t reveal his retirement plans actually retired in September.
  4. Did on-site 3 hour training about the tools I had used to write the company’s documentation in August 2011.

Unnamed Hellhole in southern Iowa

Editor's Note: This section, Unnamed Hellhole in Southern Iowa, is the part of my prepared notes that I didn't get to talk about during the panel. On Friday, I mentioned to a co-worker that I felt somewhat odd that all the talk on the panel was about the "good" that has happened in our careers. Sometimes, there are "not good" parts of a career. Certainly, I hope the students attending the panel never, ever, have to go through what I did. The parallels between this epoch of my life and "The Empire Strikes Back" are easy to sketch as I was definitely going through a time of uncertainty. Life was certainly bleak.

To this point, my career had been going quite well. I had worked as a technical writer for nearly 16 years and thought I “knew” all I needed to know about this profession. Working at this place showed me I do not. Thus, I am going to tell you something that you may not hear from anyone else – there are times in life where you will realize you are in the wrong place. I consider this a misstep in my career. Swayed to leave Quintrex with false promises of building the same type of situation I had at Quintrex from the ground up and more money. Quintrex counter offered to keep me, but I didn’t even look at the number because of the above 3 reasons. Should have looked at the number. Traded security for “opportunity” that seemed like a good idea. Learned a lot about myself and my character.
  • Began working there on 10/18/2010. 
    • Processes in place were wrong. 
      • Used a page layout app (InDesign) to maintain 100+ page user guide. ID is fine for brochures, but was the wrong tool for creating online Help in HTML. 
      • Manually typed the Table of Contents, then reprinting to verify pages matched 
      • Manually drew a line to margin 
      • One space or two – use one unless it “looks funny” then use 2. 
      • Tedious copy and paste work for other languages. 
  • Stopped working there on 4/13/2011. 
Being told I was a good fit for the position has turned into a blessing in disguise. It certainly was not at the time. I had been replaced at Quintrex so I couldn't return. This was a tumultuous time in my life. I was back to searching for a job, as I had done from 2/1992 through 2/1995. I began attending daily mass at our parish. During this time, networking became key.
  1. Father of a kid on my son’s baseball team came to a game with a programming language book. Started conversation about it. I hadn’t known he was a programmer. Found out he worked at where I had applied, and that since he knew my current manager, he said he would put in a good word for me.
  2. Neighbor’s sister-in-law worked at my current employer, knew my current manager, and said she would put in a good word for me. She was recently reassigned to my department. My cubicle is less than 5 feet from her.
  3. Fellow parish member worked at my current employer. Had known her for 20+ years. She knew my current manager, and said she would put in a good word for me.

Eventually, I interviewed with my current manager, and then followed up with HR, who told me I was the “top candidate” for the position. That thought still makes for a nice ego stroke. Job offer came via phone call during supper. When I was told what the salary was for the position, it was higher than I had imagined and took me by surprise to the extent that I didn't even try to negotiate! Always negotiate.

What kind of work do you do currently?

Software documentation

What skills are needed to perform your job?

These are ideas that are not limited to my work at my employer – spans all of career. Given: you know how to arrange words in an order that is clear and easy to read.
  1. Ability to analyze and use previous knowledge to make decisions about new situations.
  2. Critical thinking skills
    • If you are told the system should create A, but you have never been able to create A in the system – you can only create B, what is different? What steps did the person telling you A is created take to achieve that and where are the differences between your knowledge where you only see B and the knowledge of the person telling you should be able to create A?
  3. Teamwork Skills
    • You have your strengths and you have your weaknesses. 
    • I work on a team where my strengths (tools) and weaknesses (project management) are balanced out by others on the team.
  4. Compromise
    • Our department had a recent discussion about expand / collapse. This became my pet peeve issue that if you search for a keyword in the "site" search and the keyword is found and you click the search result to go to the page that the word is supposed to be on and you do a page-level search for the same word, if that word is in a collapsed section, you wouldn’t be able to find the word that your "site" search listed in the search results. We were collaboratively working on a user guide where the original design of a page had 7 expand / collapse sections and the word I was using as an example was in the seventh collapsed section. 7 user clicks to find information – making the user do more work than necessary. To go along with this, there is often more than one way to write something. Negotiating a style that you will use to make them read as if one person, one department, wrote all of the documentation.You could write:
      • To do A, click B.
        • or
      • Click B to do A.
  5. Philosophical differences
    • There are different approaches to any situation. 
    • Your experience is just as valuable as your co-worker’s experience.
  6. Do not be totalitarian in your opinions and dismiss others’ opinions. 
    • Who is the best writer - Shakespeare or Chaucer? 
    • Often there is no right answer so you have to use the skills you gained from being an English major to analyze the situation and make a decision.

How might an English major prepare for the job market?

  1. Embrace technology.
    • You don’t have to own the latest / greatest gadget or use the latest / greatest Windows operating system or Mac operating system, but you should be familiar with it. I knew nothing about computers when I graduated and consider myself to be dangerous enough to think I know what I’m doing when it comes to trying to remedy laptop or computer issues.
    • The trend is for companies to use social media to research you as a candidate. Your online images and words create an impression of you by people you may never meet.
  2. Understand the value of a recent backup
    • Consider if the device upon which you store your music collection or even your term papers for this semester were to suddenly not work. I was using my work laptop when I suddenly got an odd Windows message. The end result is that I lost a lot of data. I’ve also lost music files that were created by converting from CD to MP3.
    • Humility
      • You are not the gift to writing that you think you are. You will encounter multiple people in multiple situations where what you think is “right” is exactly what they think is “wrong” and your challenge is to and Embrace that person’s opinion. Make yourself learn from that person. Adapt your world to incorporate their knowledge to improve yourself.
        • Side note: In my experience, everyone thinks that they are a writer. The quip I’ve often heard is that “writing is easy. After all, it’s just typing words.” My value as a technical writer is the ability to choose the words that communicate the information the user needs and to put those words in the correct order. At every position in my career, there was always a co-worker that believed they would be able to do my job “better” than me. There is probably a person on this campus that has the same interests as you and may think they are as skilled in that interest as you are. 
    • Soft skills
    • Develop good habits
      • Decide that you’re going to do something at 3:30, M-F, and then track whether you follow through with doing it. 
      • If you don’t follow through, analyze your motivations for not following through. 
    • Don’t be discouraged by the advertised jobs you will come across. When you go to or or, searching for "writer" or "write" will not yield many results. 
      • Expand your search criteria or, perhaps, don't specify any search criteria and simply scan all available jobs. 
      • There's many job titles for a "technical writer" such as "documentation specialist", "technical communicator" and so forth.

    Is there anything you wish you had done while you were a student that would have prepared you more effectively for the work world?

    1. Take programming classes, especially if you are interested in writing software documentation. As someone who writes about software, a basic understanding of the logic and approach to programming - what it takes to create the systems I write about – would be helpful. You can learn on your own.
    2. Take a basic business class and/or accounting class. Economics, ledgers, taxes. I was in a position where I did technical writing contracts outside of regular work. Have no idea if what I did was correct or not, but I did it. <grin>
    3. Spend time in the computer lab helping users solve issues with computers and software.
    4. Try different things that are outside of your comfort zone. Have preferences, know what you’re good at, but don’t pigeon-hole yourself into a limited area.

    Friday, November 21, 2014


    This Sunday is the 26th edition of the WWE PPV Survivor Series and with its arrival comes the "traditional" Survivor Series match between Team Cena and Team Authority. The latest stipulation is that if Team Cena loses, each member will be fired. Of course, the previously announced stipulation of Team Authority losing is that they will no longer be in power.

    As expected, a new edition of the PPV means Bleacher Report has put together a retrospective but instead of focusing only on Survivor Series, the retrospective looks at the Timeline of the 50 Most Important Matches in WWE History.

    Writing the Story so it is Told when I am unable to do so

    Previously, on this blog, I've quoted or referenced a blog called "Must Be This Tall To Ride" which Matt writes. In today's post, called "A Thinking Lesson From Jerry Seinfeld," he springboards from an episode in a series called Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee to make a point about our time on this planet. He asks me, and his other readers, "what
    story do you want people to tell about you when you are dead?"

    I was coming home from a funeral for Marty Nowlan from Cedar Rapids to home when I pulled out my Android phone and pressed Record. I told my phone that when I die, I don't want people to go to the church basement for a dinner - I want someone to rent out the back room of Gus', which is a local bar I think has a great atmosphere, and to pay for people to go there and have a good time - drink booze if they want. That's what I want people to remember me. I don't want them to remember the me that is unsure of himself, that doubts his place in the world, or that I have failed in each of the roles I have had in my life so far. I want people to smile and, perhaps, think I did okay in the world, which is what Matt concludes towards the end of his post when he writes, "If I die today, not everyone will be able to say that" I was kind, funny or generous" because, frankly, "I’m not always kind or funny or generous."

    Sometimes, it seems like life is too damn busy to be those adjectives through my actions. Megan will be a freshman in college a year from now and Alex will be a junior in high school. By this time of the year, in 2021, assuming both kids graduate from college in 4 years, they will be out of college. How does that get paid for? How does that all work out? It seems like the answer is an unclear muck of uncertainty and the more I think about it, the muckier it becomes.

    You should definitely read the post.

    Holding Out Hope for a Prediction

    Yesterday, I predicted that Metallica "will play "Seek and Destroy" on Thursday's episode and then play "Enter Sandman" on Friday's episode." That did not happen. Instead, Metallica aligned itself with my wish for what they would play. I wanted them to play "Enter Sandman" on Thursday, which they did. I continued with the hope that they would "play a brand-new song - a world premiere - that will be on their next release" on Friday (tonight). Knowing that they played "Enter Sandman" last night gives me hope that I will hear a new song tonight, assuming I am able to keep myself awake on a Friday night.

    Thursday, November 20, 2014

    And then the Bells Tolled

    Metallica chose to play "For Whom the Bell Tolls" on The Craig Ferguson Show during their week-long residency. I am chuckling because when I posted Tomi Paldanius acoustic cover of the same song, I didn't know that was the song Metallica would include. I got up today to learn that they had selected that same song. I'm unable to stay up until 11:30 PM and stay awake, watching television, until they play at 12:25 AM. Yes, I'm getting old.

    I'll go out on a limb and make a prediction. I think they will play "Seek and Destroy" on Thursday's episode and then play "Enter Sandman" on Friday's episode. Personally, if it were up to me, I would choose "Enter Sandman" for Thursday and play a brand-new song - a world premiere - that will be on their next release and then make a studio version of that song available on iTunes immediately after the show. I would also make an announcement regarding the release date of the album that they are working on and announce a date on which they will announce their concert tour plans for America. This seems like a logical prediction because on their 2014 tour, they played "The Lords of Summer" which is a new song. I don't think they will play that on the Craig Ferguson show because of its 8 minute length, which seems to be roughly double the amount of time they play each night.

    For as big of a band as Metallica is, Metallica should've negotiated to play at least 10 songs over the week. They should have played two songs a night. They could have them kick off the show each night and then end the show. They could have played the short songs they have already played - "Hit the Lights," "Fuel," and "For Whom the Bell Tolls" - at the beginning of the show and played one of their longer songs at the end of the night. For those, I would have selected "Harvester of Sorrow," "One," "Seek and Destroy", "The Lords of Summer", and then as the 10th song, play something from the new album that they are recording. Lars has stated that they are in the 4th inning of the recording process so that's over 1/2 way. They haven't announced any plans for releasing it, for touring the states, or any of that so why not take advantage of the opportunity to generate interest in what they have planned for the future?

    Regardless of what I would do, here's Metallica playing "For Whom the Bell Tolls" from last night.

    And I returned to Tomi Paldanius' page. He has played quite a few songs listed here so I think I will continue to enjoy his music not only today but well into the future.

    Wednesday, November 19, 2014

    More Metallica on Craig Ferguson and Acoustic Bells

    Metallica played "Fuel" for their second song of their weeklong residency.

    Who is Tomi Paldanius?!?


    I haven't paid much attention to Jonathan Gruber, the man who said that because Americans are stupid, ObamaCare will pass. Here's a summary page to catch up on the hoopla. Of course, the Republicans are having fun with this, pointing to it as just one more reason the law should be repealed or defunded or whatever the current buzz is at the moment (it changes too fast for me to do my work and keep up). The way I see it, all this pointing fingers at Jonathan Gruber simply means there's now a face that can be tied to the law and a catch phrase about the law that will stick in the minds of people. The word "scapegoat" comes to mind for some unknown reason. Gruber had no vote in Congress. 

    Tuesday, November 18, 2014

    Keystone XL Pipeline is Defeated

    Somewhere, Someone

    Pursuant to my obsession with looking at CD collections on Craigslist that I won't ever purchase, here are 3.

    • A must buy collection of 479 CD's plus 422 Bonus CD's. Perfect for any lover of music.

    • KISS 16 CD Collection, Excellent to Like New Condition - $60 (Greenwood)
      CD's are Scratch Free in Excellent Condition.
      Here is the list of titles:
      Psycho Circus ( Holographic Cover) 1998
      Killers. 1982
      Dynasty. 1979
      Love Gun. 1977
      You Wanted the Best, You Got The Best. 1996
      Destroyer. 1976
      Rock and Roll Over. 1976
      Asylum. 1985
      Carnival of Souls. 1997
      MTV Unplugged. 1996
      Animalize. 1984
      Music from The Elder. (The Remasters 1997)
      Paul Stanley Solo. 1978
      Ace Frehley Solo. 1978
      Peter Criss Solo. 1978
      Gene Simmons. 1978

    Metallica on Craig Ferguson

    Amnesty Letter

    Just wondering if this letter could bite the signees in the future....

    Saving Me from Myself

    What could be part II of my previous post has to do with the mistake I just made moments ago. I can't detail the error of my ways at the moment but at some point today, I hope to spare a few minutes to document it either here or in my personal journal. The gist is that I can access multiple email accounts, including our home account, and when I just clicked a link from our home account to Facebook and because the home account is "connected" to Karen's Facebook account, Facebook wants me to sign in.

    I don't remember my password.

    No problem - I can sign in with the password of my Hotmail account.

    I don't remember my password.

    I'm praying that rebooting my laptop after a bit will solve this. Otherwise, I need to reset passwords, which I hate doing because I never remember them. Maybe it's time to set up a 3rd party password storing utility.

    The Value of Listed Values that are Invalid

    I'm monkeying around with our work templates. In both templates, a style called "List Number" exists. In one of the templates, it looks the way I expect it to look, which is to have a number while, in the other template, it doesn't have a number. I know that I can copy styles from one template to another so I went into the Organizer screen, shown below, to copy styles from template to the other. Because I essentially want the .dotm template on the left to have the same style definitions as the .dotx template on the right, I decided to select all the styles in the list of styles on the left and delete them. I can select all styles and the Delete button is enabled. However, Word will not allow me to delete built in styles. That's fine - I understand why. What I don't understand is why those built in styles are then listed on the left and why the Delete button is enabled. It doesn't make sense. Word show throw up an error that says, "You have selected to delete built in styles. You cannot delete the following styles you selected" followed by a list of the selected built in styles. This is crazy to have to click Ok each time there is a built in style in my list. I took the capture below when I got to Heading 5, but there was a message for Default Paragraph Style and Headings 1-4 before I took that capture. I imagine I will get the same error for Headings 6-9 and whatever other built in styles that I'm not thinking of at the moment.

    It's seeing things like this that make me wish I was a software tester at Microsoft with the credibility to find things like this prior to releasing the software to the world.

    Monday, November 17, 2014

    Bigger than One Man

    The headline is screaming for anyone to read it!

    Can Indiana Pacers Use Lost Season to Rebuild into Championship Contender?

    The article under the headline is mystifying, basing its claim that the season was lost because of one injury to a key player. The doom and gloom begins with the opening of the article, "The second Paul George went up to block that James Harden layup this summer in the Team USA scrimmage, this season was lost for the Indiana Pacers" and doesn't give any credit to any other player stepping up to make a difference.

    And, okay, fine. The season began rough (3-6).

    But there are 82 games this season. How can anyone possibly know what their final record will be when the 2015 NBA Playoffs arrive?

    This isn't a blind "I am a Pacers fan so I think they will make a 20 point comeback with a minute in the game" fan speaking. Authentically, how does this author know what their final record will be?

    Sunday, November 16, 2014

    Consolidating Madness

    I'm pulling music files from the My Cloud drive into my master folder structure on the external hard drive in an effort to weed out duplicates. In doing so, I feel like I'm doing the same work over and over because I think I've done exactly the same type of merging previously. For example, in the folder structure where the .txt files for my MS DOS files are stored, my code used to put the day in front of the month as in creating a folder for December 5, 2013 in this format: 2013_05_12. At some time in the reconversion, I decided to change the code for my folders to be in this format: 2013_12_05. I'm not sure if one is better than the other, but that's what I did. This means that when I merge these .txt files into the "master" folder structure, I have both folders:
    2013_05_12 <-- old format
    2013_12_05 <-- new format
    My methodology is to rename 2013_05_12 to 2013_12_05 and, of course, that means I end up with (2) files in that folder structure (Windows' way of saying that there is a second file with the same name). I do have a separate MS DOS batch file that deletes all my duplicate files as it looks for files named *(2).* through *(40).* and deletes them without manual intervention.

    On the same subject as changing my MS DOS batch file code, I just made a change to the code to include the current date in the file name that is created. I don't know why I waited until now, when I'm nearly done with the reconversion, to do this except to say that I never thought of it until this morning. Here's the revised code:
    REM | 20131230
    REM | Create date folder
    cd f:\music_shell
    cd f:\music_shell\(_______Date
    SET Today=%Date:~10,4%_%Date:~4,2%_%Date:~7,2%
    mkdir %today%
    REM | Begin commands for the entire music_shell folder
    cd music_shell
    dir F:\music_shell\*.flv *.mp4 *.web* /s /od >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_videofiles_music_shell_2TB.txt
    dir F:\music_shell\*___* *-* *_* *___* *--* /s /od >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_needtofix_music_shell_2TB.txt
    dir F:\music_shell\a* b* c* d* e* f* g* h* i* j* k* l* m* n* o* p* q* r* s* t* u* v* w* x* y* z* >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_allfolders_music_shell_2TB.txt
    dir F:\music_shell\*.mp3 *.wav *.wma /s /od>f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_mostrecentcount_music_shell_2TB.txt
    REM | Begin commands for the music_reconversion folder
    cd Music_shell\music_reconversion_E_DR
    dir F:\Music_shell\music_reconversion_E_DR\*.mp3 *.wav *.wma /s /od>f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_mostrecentcount_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    dir F:\Music_shell\music_reconversion_E_DR\*.flv *.mp4 *.web* /s /od>f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_videofiles_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    dir F:\Music_shell\music_reconversion_E_DR\*___* *-* *_* *___* *--* /s /od >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_needtofix_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    dir F:\Music_shell\music_reconversion_E_DR\a* b* c* d* e* f* g* h* i* j* k* l* m* n* o* p* q* r* s* t* u* v* w* x* y* z* >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_allfolders_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    cd music_shell
    dir *.* /s >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_allfiles_Music_shell_2TB.txt
    dir *.* /s >f:\music_shell\(_______Date\%today%\%today%_allfiles_2TB.txt
    The result of this code is the date is in the file name. Yesterday, I had files like this:
    Directory of F:\Music_shell\(_______Date\2014_11_15
    11/15/2014  03:59 PM        18,467,635 allfiles_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:58 PM         9,080,126 allfiles_Music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:58 PM           170,902 allfolders_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM             1,115 allfolders_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM         6,914,594 mostrecentcount_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM         6,914,594 mostrecentcount_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:58 PM         8,158,170 needtofix_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM         8,497,847 needtofix_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM             2,021 videofiles_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/15/2014  03:57 PM             2,021 videofiles_music_shell_2TB.txt
    and today, the same code I run gives me this:
    Directory of F:\Music_shell\(_______Date\2014_11_16
    11/16/2014  08:05 AM        22,781,984 2014_11_16_allfiles_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:05 AM        13,390,516 2014_11_16_allfiles_Music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:05 AM           170,900 2014_11_16_allfolders_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM             1,115 2014_11_16_allfolders_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM         6,943,576 2014_11_16_mostrecentcount_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM         9,425,363 2014_11_16_mostrecentcount_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:05 AM         8,181,281 2014_11_16_needtofix_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM        12,033,726 2014_11_16_needtofix_music_shell_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM             2,021 2014_11_16_videofiles_Music_reconversion_2TB.txt
    11/16/2014  08:04 AM             4,922 2014_11_16_videofiles_music_shell_2TB.txt
    Just another way that I geek out when I write MS DOS code!

    Saturday, November 15, 2014

    The 25 Best Metal Bands of All Time

    I like the Metal Sucks website as the people that run it have a sharp sense of humor. They were counting down the Top 25 Best Metal Bands of All Time and posted a fake #1 - Manowar before revealing that their real #1 band was Black Sabbath. I'm okay with Black Sabbath as number 1. Here's my opinion on whether the band should be on this list. The ???? means I can't name a single song by them so I can't really judge and there are 9 of those in the list. That means 64% of the bands on this list are ones I agree with. Not terrible, but not spectacular. Seems I would be needing to do some research on in the near future. Check this post in the future for the ???? bands to be changed to include a link to the specific songs the website used as evidence that the band is great.

    Hell, maybe I'll change this to be a "Page" and put a link to my personal favorite song by every one of these bands! That's an idea!

    #1 — Black Sabbath
    Okay - Link to Paranoid
    #2 — Iron Maiden
    Okay - Link to Wasted Years
    #3 — Slayer
    Okay - Link to War Ensemble
    #4 — Metallica
    Okay - Link to All Nightmare Long
    #5 — Pantera
    Okay - Link to Walk
    #6 — Judas Priest
    Okay - Link to Painkiller
    #7 — Megadeth
    Okay - Link to I Thought I Knew It All
    #8 — Death
    #9  — Motorhead
    Okay - Link to Ace of Spades
    #10 – Carcass
    #11 – Cannibal Corpse
    #12 – Anthrax
    Okay - Link to Indians
    #13 – Sepultura
    Okay - Link to Roots
    #14 – Dio
    Okay - Link to Holy Diver
    #15 – Mercyful Fate
    #16 – Morbid Angel
    #17 – Meshuggah
    #18 – Opeth
    Okay - Link to Bleak
    #19 – Testament
    Okay - Link to Practice What You Preach
    #20 – At The Gates
    #21 – AC/DC
    Okay - Link to Have a Drink On Me
    #22 – Celtic Frost
    #23 – Ozzy Osbourne
    Okay - Link to Crazy Train
    #24 – Napalm Death
    #25 – Lamb of God
    Okay - Link to Black Label

    # 1 Black Sabbath
    Fake #1 — Manowar
    #2 — Iron Maiden (86 Votes, 1,635 Points)
    #3 — Slayer (85 Votes, 1,571 Points)
    #4 — Metallica (84 Votes, 1,486 Points)
    #5 — Pantera (65 Votes, 1,052 Points)
    #6 — Judas Priest (61 Votes, 997 Points)
    #7 — Megadeth (64 Votes, 913 Points)
    #8 — Death (57 Votes, 778 Points)
    #9  — Motorhead (42 Votes, 622 Points)
    #10 – Carcass (42 Votes, 516 Points)

    #11 – Cannibal Corpse (40 Votes, 510 Points)
    #12 – Anthrax (42 Votes, 497 Points)
    #13 – Sepultura (41 Votes, 444 Points)
    #14 – Dio (33 Votes, 433 Points)
    #15 – Mercyful Fate (31 Votes, 419 Points)
    #16 – Morbid Angel (33 Votes, 406 Points)
    #17 – Meshuggah (32 Votes, 377 Points)

    #18 – Opeth (30 Votes, 364 Points)
    #19 – Testament (33 Votes, 347 Points)
    #20 – At The Gates (28 Votes, 331 Points)
    #21 – AC/DC (17 Votes, 313 Points)

    #22 – Celtic Frost (24 Votes, 310 Points)
    #23 – Ozzy Osbourne (21 Votes, 290 Points)
    #24 – Napalm Death (22 Votes, 278 Points)
    #25 – Lamb of God (29 Votes, 277 Points)