Posts for #Software

Go here to get it. Mind you, I don’t know if there are any restrictions – I had registered on a similar page a while ago, in the hope of being on the beta at some point. You have to login with your passport and enter a bit of additional information, but once you’ve done that, the download starts immediately. Have fun!

I had a Subversion repository hosted on a Linux server that I wanted to migrate to a Windows server. I managed to do this, but it wasn’t all immediately intuitive, so I’m documenting the process here in case I need to do it again sometime, or someone else benefits from it. To begin with, I found the wonderful SVN 1-Click Setup, which promises to do the whole installation of SVN on Windows at the click of a button. I thought that would be a good thing and downloaded it (here).

The installation had three steps, each of which I was allowed to skip – in the end I used only one of the steps, the first one, where the main svn installation is done. I didn’t want to create any new repositories or install TortoiseSVN; apparently the package is focused on situations where people want to set up SVN as a version control system on one machine, as opposed to a server-based setup. I could most probably have used the “standard” distribution from the main Subversion site instead of the 1-Click package. This became even clearer a short while later, when I looked around for some kind of service or similar, that I assumed had been installed to actually make the SVN service available on the network. I found nothing, and so I got the two files SVNService.exe and SVNService.exe.config from here (make sure you have .NET 1.1 installed to use this, and be careful when downloading, because otherwise you’ll get one of the many intermediate pages from the web frontend at that download URL). I copied the two SVNService.exe* files into the SVN bin directory (by default that’s c:\Program Files\Subversion\bin) and edited SVNService.exe.config to configure the paths to my SVN installation and my repository, as well as the ListenHost. Then I used InstallUtil (comes with .NET) to install the service:

I was sure I had blogged about this before, but apparently I haven’t. Anyway, I’m certainly not the first… I just love the way this thing talks to me. I’m talking about “Encarta Instant Answers”, which is a contact you can add to your Messenger using the email address encarta@conversagent.com. Just add the contact and start talking to the machine…

It’s really supposed to answer questions about god, the world and everything, and it does that really nicely, but even more it reminds me of ELIZA, a computer program that talked to the user, invented in 1966. Here’s a link to an online ELIZA if you want to try it. Here’s the conversation I just had with Encarta Instant Answers, which prompted this post:

This must be one of the stupidest messages in Visual Studio – how glad I am they kept it on board for 2005!

Get it here, read about the new features here and tell them about what you don’t like here.

TestComplete by AutomatedQA is a tool for automated testing, useful in many software testing scenarios ranging from internal unit testing to black box UI testing. The next major version 4 has been in the making for a while now and they still don’t announce a release date, but every now and then they make previews of various new features available (for example on their new community site). The latest thing that caught my eye was that OCR is going to come to automated testing in TestComplete 4. From TestComplete’s scripting languages, it will be possible to use OCR to parse text on screen that has been drawn there, in other words, which is part of an image. Apparently it can work with a configurable selection of arbitrary Windows fonts – I’m looking forward to trying how well it will work with my TabletPC-generated handwritten Oliver Sturm font 😃. A great idea, it will certainly make black box testing much easier in many cases. Here’s the article about this on the AQA community site, which has a few more details: TestComplete 4 Sneak Peak - OCR

I’ve been evaluating MindManager X5 and I really dig it. It’s a great program, it’s able to work with ink on my Tablet PC, it can integrate with MS Project. I have tried eight other mind mapping tools (FreeMind, Visual Mind, ConceptDraw MINDMAP, Thought Mapper, MYmap, BrainMine, Mind Pad, Map it!, MindMapper and OpenMind, in case someone’s interested) and they just can’t compete with MindManager’s feature set. So, one seemingly small problem I’m having is that the fonts that MindManager shows in the diagrams are fuzzy. Look here:

Here we go with another editor test, this time I took a look at EditPlus. You can find the introductional posting to this series here.

I have now started to make a tabular overview of the tested text editors available. You can find it here and I will keep it updated with new results as I continue to test.

The second test in this series, which is the best text editor for me, is about TextPad.