54 posts categorized "Success Stories"

June 07, 2015

Elizabeth Holmes Created a Futuristic Health Test Lab

A super impressive woman, running a large scale enterprise, solving a major problem: the cost, accuracy and complexity of health test lab testing (blood, urine, etc).


March 29, 2013

DRIVER.CAB and Windows XP 32-bit driver archive

Have you gotten stuck installing a piece of software or a hardware driver with a dialog box looking for "some files"?

It looks like this:

image from lh5.ggpht.com
What is most likely is that Windows XP did not install this driver on your computer and another installation requires it. If you have Windows XP (32-bit version), download this archive in .RAR format.

Download Driver.cab in RAR format

Just download the file, uncompress it with WinRAR into a folder and point the installation dialog box to get the file from this folder. Voila, problem solved.

March 02, 2013

Solution to mini-PCI Express wifi hardware radio off - Tape pin #20

This is one of more weird solutions I have ever "found." I reinstalled the WiFi mini PCI-express card in our Toshiba 230D laptop and found the hardware radio was permanently off. That means I could not connect to any WifI network. I thought that I had a bad card, but the Intel Wifi Link 5300 drivers installed fine, and were properly running. So the laptop and OS "sees" the card but the diagnostics said "radio is off."

I found this thread that claimed to "tape over" pin #20 to force the hardware radio to be on all the time, regardless of what the laptop hardware was telling the card. This makeshift solution, worked like a charm. Not a driver issue, not a BIOS issue, not a Windows issue, but a strange issue with a broken hardware switch in the laptop. The manual "override" was the perfect solution.

Your mileage may vary.


August 15, 2012

Coolest Dad Ever Builds a Roller Coaster in Backyard


August 07, 2012

Run your own science experiment - in space - powered by #Arduino

Yeah, in space. These folks have raised over $100,000 on kickstarter to enable people all over the world to run their own science experiements, in space. They will launch an Arduino powered set of sensors on a satellite payload. Then they will collect experiments to be run "open source" style in space. No need for NASA, after all.


July 26, 2012

Save Hundreds of Dollars by Fixing Your Car's Plastic Bumper Dents and Scrapes

My mother, Mila, G-d lover her, has trouble with parking spots. I probably inherited this bad-parking gene from her, as these parking jams have happened to me as well. In this article I will describe how to fix plastic bumper and fender dents without paying an arm and a leg (at least $300) for what amounts to 1 hour or so worth of your time.

Here's what a typical plastic bumper dent looks like:

image from images04.olx.com
This happens when you back into a pole or another car, or some other immovable object. Most repair shops will tell you to replace the bumper - maybe an $800 job. This video shows how you can do the job with out drilling holes, because you have access behind the bumper. But if you are working where you cannot access behind the bumper, or where you'd need to take apart the bumper to fix it, the following procedures may be necessary.

The instructions will show you how to do the job with minimal tools and cost. You can finish the paint and resulting drilled holes much better than we did. Follow this video if you want to see how to professionally finish the job (but you will need more time, equipment, sandpaper and materials to do this right).

1. The materials required for this job are described in the picture below. Most are found around the house (meaning you should not have to buy anything, hopefully)

  • a small hammer
  • a few thin drill bits (less than 1/4")
  • a set of pliers
  • finishing touchup colour you can get from your car dealership for your model and make of car
  • an electric drill
  • silicon filler (or some other plastic bonding filler)
  • a putty knife and regular knife


  • a flowerpot hanger (with a hook at the end) with a threaded point
  • a hot air blow dryer (preferably with leopard print like my Mom has ! :)

Plastic bumper DIY repair kit

2. Use the drill to make very small holes in the deepest part of the depression of each dent. Start here because this is the part you will attempt to pull out. MAKE SURE YOU DON'T DRILL A HOLE LARGER THAN THE HANGER SCREW.

3. Screw in the hanger screw carefully into the hole.

4. Use the hot air blow dryer to soften the plastic bumper around the screw. A good 3-5 minutes should be good.

5. Carefully pull on the hanger and see if you can pull out the bumper. If pulling doesn't work or if the screw pulls out of the hole, put the end of the hook into the drill hole instead, and use it as a "puller".

6. Once you have pulled out the dent, look for other depressions. Drill more holes there and follow steps #3-5 to continue to reshape the bumper.

7. You may find that if you have had your dent for a few months or years, the shape will not fully recover. The reforming should be done as soon as possible as the dent occurs, as plastic tends to reform based on a new shape and "remember" its shape.

8. You may be able to heat up other parts of the bumper, use the hook to pull out the shape, and quickly put a cold, wet cloth over the area to "encourage" the plastic to go back to its original shape. This is plastic, you will have to get creative to ensure the material is reformed by using heat and then cold. This video shows a smaller dent being removed without any screws at all - just a heat gun and compressed air to quickly cool the heated area.

9. The result will look something like the pictures below. Note the holes have not really been finished properly, and could use some good sanding, proper plastic bond and then a finish with spray paint. The key is that the major dents are gone (mostly at least -- it is very hard to remove these dents 100% without replacing the bumper, especially if the dents are a few years old like in the case below. Your mileage may vary!)


Rear bumper After Repair
Rear bumper - 4 attempts to pull out a very deep dent
Left rear fender bumper
Pulled out dents with 2 attempts

UPDATE: Friends are asking why I didn't take "before" and "after" pictures of our Toyota Camry that we fixed. The reason is simple: I really didn't think this would work as well as it did, so I didn't take the "before" picture before it was too late and it was fixed. Should have, I know. And will next time!


July 17, 2012

Congratulations Marissa Mayer - Illinois Institute of Technology Commencement Address

This commencement address at the Illinois Institute of Technology by Marissa Mayer, the new CEO of Yahoo!, competes with the Steve Jobs commencement address. In fact I think for young people graduating, Marissa's address is even better in many ways, more pragmatic and down-to-earth. Enjoy. She is reaching places no female engineer has ever been - an engineer running a company at not much more than 40 years of age. She is also expecting a child in October 2012 and starting as a CEO at struggling Internet giant. Good luck Marissa! With this advice, you just can't go wrong.


July 07, 2012

Getting Joomla properly working on 1and1

If you are installing Joomla on your 1and1 hosting account please make sure you read this thread on the Joomla forums. If you are having problems getting the install to work with PHP errors or if you are having problems with Internal Server Errors (error 500) after your install works you have to make sure your .htaccess file in the root of your installation folder is properly configured. (And you must call it .htaccess with permissions 0755, not htaccess.txt!)

Namely you must

1) make sure PHP v5 is used (rather than v4). This code will make that work:

## One and One force PHP5 setting
AddType x-mapp-php5 .php
## END - One and One PHP 5 Settings

2) make sure the Rewrite Base directive is set

 RewriteBase /

Here's a copy of my .htaccess file if you need to replace yours and give it a try, in case it works. Note you may need to rename htaccess.txt to .htaccess before it works.

Also note that remote MySQL administration (like MySQL Workbench) DOES NOT work with 1and1. You will need to use 1and1's web based interface to administer your MySQL. I have also not figtured out a way to browse the Joomla logs directory other than to FTP in to my server and read it directly rather than navigating to myjoomlasite.com/logs. 

This thread, while long, can be useful if you can make out the signal from the noise. The major steps are

  1. download the joomla .zip file
  2. setup a home directory for your joomla install
  3. point a subdomain at this directory in 1and1 control panel
  4. upload the .zip file there and uncompress it to get the install directory
  5. edit the htaccess.txt and rename it to .htaccess and make the edits above
  6. create the MySQL database in the 1and1 MySQL Administration settings
  7. note the particulars for your MySQL database once it has been created - you must get all this information right
  8. hit the subdomain created in #3 above and follow the installation wizard -- you will provide your database credentials here
  9. if all is well you will have  a working Joomla site sample (aadev.newpathconsulting.com for example).

July 06, 2012

Solution for spinning clock problem on Blackberry (Torch or OS6)

Is your Blackberry driving you insane? My Torch will have a black spinning watch at least 20 times per day, pausing what I am doing, and simply "freezing" me out of using it. The issue surprisingly is with a feature called "content compression". Newer Blackberries have media cards (microSD cards) that can be used to store data. Emails can be stored there as well. If you have lots of pictures, emails on your device (say multiple email inboxes too), content compression will force all content to be, well, compressed.

This is a CPU intensive procedure, and causes the freezes. The device starts to compress the files (much like when you make a zip file), and it does this many times per day. If you have this problem turn off content compression with these steps:

  1. Select the Options (wrench icon), then Device, then Storage option.
  2. Then turn off Compression. Here's the screen on my Torch with Compression disabled -- you may find this option in General/Security or General/Storage settings on your Blackberry. Look for content compression or just compression under storage options.Capture11_31_45
  3. Click the return button and then click the save button.


Many tell you to erase the handheld and restore the backup, but this is just not required. This option, when your Blackberry is really full of data, slows down the normal operation. Resist the urge to turn this option on!

This option really doesn't work well with lots of data on your blackberry, so turn it off!

June 19, 2012

AR.Drone 2.0 - Fly. Record. Share.

Quadcopters from Parrot that record HD videos and are controlled from an iPad or Android tablet.This is one of the coolest product videos I have seen in years. Must. Get. One.