Gant Software Systems

Stupid Code Tricks

A Simple Countdown Timer

We’re about to move and I’ll be out of pocket for several days as we cart all our stuff to the new house. In the meantime, my six year old keeps asking “how much longer until we move, daddy?”. I finally decided that I would make a simple little timer to not only show how long until we start moving, but several other key events of the move as well because I find myself counting down the days as well (yeah, I really want out of this house). So I did and I’m going to put the code here. There’s nothing earth shattering here – it’s my typical “Stupid Coding Tricks” blog post. The whole point of these sorts of things is to show how a simple little program that can be written in a few minutes can still be useful. I decided to build this little app in winforms because it was the simplest thing that could possibly work.

A C# Bulk Image GrayScale Converter

I frequently evaluate potential user interface layouts to determine which of a set is the most appropriate for the intended application. Usually I break this process down into three parts, all of which have to pass for the design to be considered acceptable. Frequently parts from multiple prototypes may be combined that are the best of the set in particular categories. These parts are as follows:

A C# Bulk File Downloader

I think about code a lot. I expect that a lot of other developers do as well. But one thing that I think most of us miss while we are building huge systems to automate tasks for other people is how easy it is to code up simple things that improve our own lives and make things easier for us. Sometimes, all you need is a stupid little script and I’ve decided to have a feature on this blog for highlighting these sorts of things in the hope that it will generate some interest, both in programming for people just getting started, and in automating some of the drudgery out of life for those who are a little more seasoned (this is a polite way of saying “jaded”, “cynical”, or “old” in some quarters). Note that this code is for a very narrow task, probably won’t be repeatedly used, and thus does not meet particularly good standards for cleanliness, code commenting, etc. I believe that this sort of coding would be tremendously beneficial to the general community of computer users and I find it incredibly sad that such minimal skill levels aren’t taught. I imagine people actually spending the time to click through and manually download over a hundred (currently 192) episodes of a podcast in order to get the whole set (RSS will get you some, but it cuts off) and my mind reels at how much time and effort they will waste doing that (or worse, they miss out on an awesome podcast that can teach them a lot).