How Copy a MySQL Database

Wouldn’t it be nice if it was as simple as “copy database1 to database2”? Or something like that? But that would be too easy! Although to be fair, copying a MySQL database is easier than many other databases. But the caveat is that if you do it wrong, it is easy to accidentally export the database names, and importing an improperly exported database potentially overwrite production data if you’re not careful.

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Dusting off A 20-Year-Old Delphi Documentation Generator

Proving that some Delphi code can be parsed by my 20-year-old doc generator.

Years ago I was told by an asshole boss at a company I worked for that I was going to be “fired” if I didn’t “document my code” (although it should be noted that I maintained a department library of dozens and dozens of white papers on our software design… but he was too much of an asshole to care).

To shut him up, I showed up to the scheduled meeting a month later with a stack of paper as tall as two dictionaries, full of detailed information about every single class, method, and function written by our six-person development team. I determined from the start that there would have been no way I could have done this manually, so I spent weeks of my personal time building a documentation generator to handle the chore with its own Pascal language compiler.

Although barely working, I have brought my old documentation generator back to life and built a barely-working barebones web front end for it online for the purpose of documenting my Delphi CommonX library, but don’t get too eager to read much of it because the documentation sitting on the documentation server is super sparse and simply for the purpose of testing a new searchable database of classes and symbols.

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After Nearly a Week of Pissing Around, I Finally Got Delphi to Display a Downloaded, Local PDF on iOS When Sandboxed

Computer programs have become more complex and connected to the world via “always-on” connections…. and due to the constant threat of new internet exploits, Operating systems are a frustrating, moving target.

As a result, certain things that worked on the last version of an operating system are banned in the next, and the churn is often miserable, especially if you’re a small company with limited resources. Simply keeping your app available on the Apple App Store requires regular maintenance, periodic updates, and frustrating amounts of your time.

I finally got my client’s PDF Reporting functionality restored in their iOS app and the solution was very simple, although it required trial and error. In fairness, the solution for iOS was much simpler than the Android solution that I had to figure out a few months back. If you need help with Android, fire me a comment and I’ll possibly update this blog.

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The DUMBEST Products that Apparently Sell Like Hotcakes on the interwebs — A Continuously Curated List

I tapped into one of the internet’s most notorious motivators of SPAM ads, Clickbank, to find you the hottest-selling trash I could find. Using ClickBank’s own statistics engine, I went through all of the top sellers, to figure out what kind of crap people are pushing and why.

Clickbank is an online marketplace where the people who want to get their products out there set the terms that they are willing to pay for a sale, and the sky is the limit in terms of what companies may be willing to pay. Sometimes they are allowing for recurring revenue through subscriptions to be passed on to the sellers, creating extra motivation, driven by subscription revenue. They pay up to 70% commission to anyone who can bring customers through whatever means necessary, which can include spamming your email, spamming Facebook groups, and “influencing”. Motivated sellers foam at the mouth and set up all kinds of sleazy methods to sell more of these products than the next guy.

ClickBank offers potential sellers the opportunity to look at the average earnings per sale as well as the “gravity” (essentially popularity) of the product. Products with high gravity are actually selling out there… here’s some of the crap that is doing well.

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Viable Caustics Solution For Cycles Raytracer that you can TEST RIGHT NOW in Blender 3.1

Blender Caustics with Cycles

I love raytracing. It is one of the most fabulous and fascinating things a powerful computer can do… and raytracing keeps on getting better and better. However, one of the biggest limitations of Blender’s Default Raytracer, “Cycles”, has always been its lack of caustics tracing capabilities. I assume that if you clicked on the title of this blog, you already know what caustics are so I’ll waste little time describing them. Caustics are the fun ways that light bends through refractive objects causing light rays to change direction. The most commonly recognizable example of this in the real world is easily how sunlight bends off the waves of a swimming pool. To achieve this effect in the Cycles renderer, usually required cumbersome tricks… but not anymore.

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You Suck at Karaoke — An Examination of Why

This article is intended for both performers and karaoke jockeys who run karaoke nights. It is a guide to making your karaoke performance the best it can be and making your patrons enjoy listening to their friends, ultimately leading to a fun time for all.

Forgive the clickbait-style title, but hey… what’s a guy gotta do to get attention in this day and age! I’ll cut right to the chase. You might have a voice of an angel, but your Karaoke performance might sound bad. In reality, you might just be a bad singer with a tin ear. You might be singing half an octave out of key, as that 5th-interval is commonly mistaken for an octave… you might have no rhythm… you might not even know the song you’re singing. Chances are if you’re someone who really just “can’t sing”… then this article probably won’t help you, you need singing lessons and potentially music lessons. But hey… it’s okay to suck as long as you’re having fun. Have fun out there!

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The Price Gouging of Minneapolis Nightlife in 2022

Disclaimer: Many of the statements in this article are purely speculative as the balance sheets of private establishments are… private.

I spend my days glued to a computer, with no roommates, family, or friends ever stopping by. The only way I get to interact with humanity is by going out on the town at night. If I don’t interact with humans regularly, I start to go a little crazy, and since I make very good money as a software engineer, I go out 7 nights a week. But I have to say, that the price of nightlife right now is completely out of whack, and the limits of what I’m willing to pay to patronize these places are being tested quite severely. Obviously, Covid-19 is largely to blame, and we all hope this is temporary, just like the pandemic is hopefully temporary… but I hope that the nature of free markets eventually balances everything out and things go back to normal, and soon.

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Don’t Look Up is Possibly the Greatest Single Movie Ever Made

Verdict: 10 out of 10

Don’t Look Up‘s meager 7.3 out of 10 rating on IMDB is most-likely a commentary on the movie’s polarizing nature rather than on the film’s actual quality. A 75-million-dollar endeavor from Netflix, released straight to streaming, it may be the biggest budget ever for a made-for-Netflix movie. This 75 million bought an all-star cast featuring Lianardo Dicaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Jonah Hill, and Cate Blanchet, to name a few… but the $75-million bought more than actors, as the real star in this film is it’s pointed-but-zany script, impeccable comedic timing, and expert direction.

Don’t Look Up may be possibly the most important movie of the decade. It is a movie that is likely to be poorly emulated by many movies that follow as producers and film students study it’s many innovations and out-of-the-box thinking for years to come.

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The Matrix Resurrections Review — an Absolute Masterpiece!

Verdict: 10/10 — Masterful!

The Matrix Resurrections is an absolute masterpiece that (nearly) lives up to the impossible standards of the original 1999 film.

The official poster for The Matrix Resurrections movie
Credit: Warner Bros.

This review is spoiler-free (for the most part) but assumes that you’ve seen the first 3 installments of the franchise.

I was very excited to learn of a new installment in the Matrix franchise, but also a bit nervous. I got more nervous when the reviews started rolling in. IGN gave the movie a 3/10 and tore it to shreds, and a friend of mine who managed to see it before release (somehow) said it was one of the worst movies he’d ever seen in his life.

Let me just rip on IGN for a minute: I think IGN’s review was pretty sad, and maybe they just didn’t get it because it was coming from an organization that seems to think that rehashing DnD for the 4,000,000th time is a great thing as they eagerly anticipate the release of “The Sword of Greybeard Dragonface VII – The Thunder Orb of Darkness” as if the title alone demonstrated any depth of creativity.

The Matrix Resurrections a.k.a “The Matrix 4” is a deep, meaningful, artful, entertaining, and masterful film. It is easily the best Matrix movie since the 1999 original.

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