Ya’ know, I’d noticed this, but it hadn’t bugged me. Then a student asked if I could fix it.
Way back when, I’m sure that Excel only opened up one spreadsheet at a time.
Then at some point they allowed you to multitask with them, and up until Excel 2003, Excel opened each spreadsheet in its own window.
But then they switched, so Excel 2003, 2007 and 2010 opened up multiple spreadsheets in the same window.
And now they’ve switched back with Excel 2013.
So my student still has Excel 2010 in their office, but is in a class with Excel 2013, and likes how it opens spreadsheets in different windows. So they asked how to do it in 2010 until they get upgraded.*
Find where your excel.exe file is stored (usually in something like c:\program files\microsoft office\office12).
Create a shortcut to excel.exe (Windows will probably want to put this on your desktop).
Move that shortcut to the folder containing the shortcuts that show up under “Send To” when you open a context menu by right-clicking on a file. This is probably something like c:\users\<your user name>\appdata\roaming\microsoft\windows\send to.
Now, any time you already have a spreadsheet open in an Excel window, open the second spreadsheet by right-clicking on it, and choosing Send To, and then your new Excel shortcut. Voilà! Two Excel files in two separate Excel windows.
But, many of us have to live with Windows 8 or 8.1.
One of the problems I ran into with Windows 8.1 is that (after you figure out how to get your libraries back) you don't seem to be able to include folders on networks in a library.
This is a big deal for me as a university professor: I have a private network folder, a network folder that's accessible to students, a network folder that's accessible to other faculty, a network folder for the journal that I edit (that's not accessible to anyone but me), and so on.
There is a workaround for this, and amazingly (to me), I was able to do this without an administrative permission from the control freaks that have taken over IT at my school.
Basically, you fake out Windows 8.1. First you add a folder you don't care about to your library. Then you do an easy edit to the XML file that is the guts of the library. And ouila, there's your network folder in your library. Sweet.
This is, in my experience, the better way ... It works on all versions of 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 7 and Windows 8 but does not index the network locations.
Add an extra local folder to your library. (ex: C:\temp)
Browse to this folder: C:\Users\REPLACEME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Libraries\
Copy the library file you added a folder to from step 1 to your Desktop.
Right click on the library file on your Desktop and select “Open with” and choose Notepad.
Search for the local folder you added in step 1 (ex: C:\temp). Replace this value with the location of your shared network folder (ex: \\MyNAS\NetworkFolder) and remove the entire line that contains the <serialized> and </serialized> tags.
Save your changes to the library file on the Desktop.
Cut the library file from the Desktop back to the folder in step 2 and override the existing file.
... You will have a toolbar at the top of the Explorer window that says some features are unavailable when you open the library. This can be ignored by right clicking the toolbar and selecting to not be notified again.
A couple of notes are in order.
First, it is a disadvantage that those network locations won't be indexed, but it shouldn't be a deal killer. It basically means that search of those locations won't be as fast as other locations. But, if you think about it, you had this problem before you included that network folder in your library ... you just didn't know about it yet ;)
Second, where it says "REPLACEME" in step 2, it means replace it with your username on your PC.
GDP has always been flawed. It’s missing home production, and underground production, and leisure, and the flow of environmental services.
But, our hope has always been that what it’s missing is roughly in proportion to what it measures. If this is true, then GDP is still a good measure of overall value.
Except for consumer surplus. GDP has always missed consumer surplus, And this didn’t seem to matter much … until the internet started turning lots of measurable GDP into not-so-measurable consumer surplus.
Think about a music file that you obtain for something less than its retail price. The value to you is the same, but almost all of that value is now surplus instead of revenue for the music industry. This means GDP actually falls when you pirate a song.
And yet the well-being that GDP is supposed to measure actually goes up when society pirates songs. The reason is that as price falls, we move down along the demand curve. Yes, we’re reducing measurable revenue to the industry, but we’re increasing the triangle of consumer surplus in two dimensions: both the price we would pay but no longer do, and the number of people who find it in their interest to obtain and enjoy the song at the lower price.
N.B. I do recognize that there is a broken window fallacy that’s also involved with pirating music, but that’s not my concern here.
Anyway, I think I’ve got you convinced that there’s something new going on with consumer surplus. Now consider this video. This is a serious short film, and I’m sure the creators thought nothing of what it says for macroeconomics.
Did the two girls get something of value? Yes, I think it’s obvious they did. Does it enter into GDP? Of course not. That’s problem one.
But there’s a second bigger problem. How did they produce that value?
Hmmm. Let’s play macroeconomist. The girls combined labor, capital and technology to create value. What’s the labor? I suppose it’s the girls’ time (posing, clicking, tagging, texting, and harvesting the enjoyment that follows) and the time Kirsten Dunst is actually being photographed.* But what about the rest? The phones and the internet are capital. Now, there’s technology involved in both of those too, but it’s sort of boring for my purposes because it’s extant technology.
But what about Kirsten Dunst? Is there more to her than labor? If so, is she capital or technology? I think she’s a little bit of both, perhaps even quite a bit of both, since she’s a lot more important to producing this bit of value than anything else.
She’s definitely capital in that she’s productive, and her productivity will depreciate if not cared for. A name will help with this idea; how about “Dunstware”. I think it is fair to say that an actress like this would be very concerned about the potentially rapid depreciation of her Dunstware.
But she’s also technology: a productive, non-rivalrous idea, that can be used repeatedly without being consumed. Call this “Dunstfulness”. This picks up the idea that you’re never going to be in a photo with Kirsten Dunst unless she brings her Dunstfulness with her; photoshopping is still possible, but then it’s really a form of technological spillover in which someone can use Dunstfulness without necessarily having permission to do so.
That’s mind blowing. Could you, just a few minutes ago, have conceived of a person’s … personness … as a form of technology?†
It’s get’s better. Dunstfulness is a technology for which there are network externalities that aren’t even based on production. Consider a theorem. Yes, it has network externalities because it can be used repeatedly to create new value. Dunstfulness is better than that: she can repeatedly create value (in the girls’ friends) without be used at all.
So, Dunstfulness is a technology that should be measured with our national wealth. And, it’s capable of helping to produce something valuable that should be measured in our GDP.
Further, our GDP, which does measure all the production values that go into creating Dunstware, and is clearly not going to measure the long-term investment made in creating Dunstfulness. And yet, no doubt, a lot of people along the line involved in that no doubt envisioned their work as an investment in Dunstware or Dunstfulness.
* Can we even use the word “photographed” for what happens in the video?
Shooting fish out of a barrel: what’s not to like?
This actually is a serious contraption, meant to help with the transportation of live fish over distances. I didn’t know such a thing was needed, but after watching the video, I can see that it is.
I particularly like when the salmon is almost ready to come out of the tube, and the tube shakes like it’s vomiting. It reminded me of some scenes of the the aliens’ craft in Spielberg’s version of War of the Worlds.
FWIW: Whooshh, the company that makes this initially developed the technology for collecting fruit that can bruise. They have cool videos of that too.
If you don’t know how horizontal drilling and fracking work, watch this video.
This is the only YouTube video I’ve ever seen where the dislikes are nearly as high as the likes (as I write this, they’re running about 60/40 with the likes in the lead).
And yet this is an educational video. Apparently it’s OK to dislike educational videos if they’re about subjects you don’t like, or are put out by corporations from industries you don’t like. And yes, I know the point of a like or dislike is to tell people what you like or dislike — I’m just pointing out that this sentiment is about as deep as not liking a book about birds because gannets wet their nests.
That’s f***ed up: would people react the same way to, say, Schindler’s List?
She was trying to prove a point that what we see on the internet is the manipulated version of others.
N.B. Over the weekend, my university announced that henceforth all leave, rank and tenure (LRT) packages would be paperless. This from a school whose administration is already on the record as denying the existence of some papers that have been published in paper journals carried in research libraries.
Here’s kind of a revolutionary advance from Microsoft Research. It’s called hyperlapse. I like the shots of rock climbing starting around the 1:45 mark.
Here’s the idea. If you have something like the output of a GoPro, it’s interesting, but can be really long. But, if you do a time lapse video of that output, it looks choppy. What hyperlapse does is smooth that out.
Folks, this is kind of revolutionary if you think about the applications for things like city tours, hiking trails, docents, and so on.
My dad once shot over 2 hours of video of driving I-15 through the Virgin River and Black canyons. I can’t wait to apply hyperlapse to that.
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