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Welcome to Thought Asylum a place for me to share my thoughts, ideas and experiences with the rest of the world.  I try to post reasonably regularly and if you like the content consider subscribing to the site feeds.  If you're trying to find something specific try the search, otherwise just have a browse.


Tuesday
May302017

Employee Central Service Centre Q2 2017 Release

For the first time in our quarterly SAP SuccessFactors release reviews we're including a look at the functionality of a solution known as Employee Central Service Centre; an HR service desk solution that incorporates the employee support functionality of the SAP Hybris Cloud for Customer with a SAP Cloud deployed Portal solution known as Ask HR. These elements integrate with SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central to provide a unified solution for employee support.

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Sunday
Apr302017

Batch Generating Worksheet Hyperlinks in Excel

In my work I often find myself building spreadsheets to carry out calculations, manage sophisticated processes and capture information. These spreadsheets can often extend to covering many worksheets and as a result it can be awkwardly slow to navigate to particular worksheets just by paging back and forth with the navigation buttons.

In this post I'm going to illustrate a couple of useful techniques to help you navigate around.

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Thursday
Mar302017

Duplicating Tabs in XYplorer

XYplorer is my preferred file manager on Windows. It contains a large number of features that are just too enticing for someone like me to pass up so it came as little bit of a surprise to me when in its tab based interface I couldn't find a way to quickly duplicate a tab. However XYplorer is a scriptable file manager so it was a pretty easy to create a solution.

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Sunday
Mar052017

Why I Stuck With TextExpander

Around a year ago Smile released their new version of TextExpander. This new version created quite a bit of 'heated debate' in the Mac community and whilst many eschewed the update I chose not to. I'm glad I did and I thought others might find it interesting to get some idea of why that's the case.

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Sunday
Feb192017

How to Report a Bug in Workflow

I've spent quite a bit of time helping out others on Twitter with their use of the Workflow app on iOS. In doing this I've fairly frequently come across people who are having notable issues that come down to it being a bug in the application. I'm often surprised that people seem to think that the best place to report a bug is via Twitter with a few vague sentences of description. To that end I figured I'd put together a quick overview of how I think I'd want the issues reported if I were one of the Workflow developers; which just to be clear, I'm not.

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Monday
Jan092017

Enabling XYplorer for Checking XML

Working with data and configuration files is a part of my day job and this presents me with many opportunities to automate the things I need to do with them. Recently I had a need to check a large set of XML files to make sure there were no obvious errors in them and the approach I settled on was to integrate a command line tool into XYplorer - my Windows file manager of choice.

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Friday
Jan062017

2016 Thought Asylum Annual Review

Another year ends and so it's time to take my regular look back at what's been particularly popular on thoughtasylum.com over this period and to also reflect on what I've been doing.

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Monday
Dec192016

TextExpander: Merge Text to a Single Line

It's the little things that really irritate me. I've just got one of those personalities I guess. I can't help myself - if there's an itch I always have to find a way to scratch it. One of these itches for me is copying and pasting text out of PDFs and getting unwanted line breaks in the resulting plain text. I decided to address this irritation with a little bit of text manipulation.

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Friday
Nov042016

How to Trigger DiffMerge from XYplorer

As part of my day job I work with lots of files and one of the common activities I need to carry out is to compare the contents of those files to find omissions and inconsistencies. Fortunately most of the files I need to compare are pure text based files (e.g. XML, XSL, LOG, TXT, INI) and there are plenty of tools available to help work with those files. To work with files in general on Windows I make use of the XYplorer file manager and fortunately for me it is pretty easy to integrate my comparison tool of choice into it.

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Friday
Oct282016

How to Trigger File Locator Lite from XYplorer

A month or two ago I had a bit of a problem with Windows Explorer and Google Drive that was rather painful. I lost a day of work to putting right an issue that simply shouldn't have occurred and to be honest I'm quite glad it happened to me and not one of my colleagues as I imagine that for many of them things would have ended a lot worse. It was at this point that I began looking at alternatives to Windows Explorer.

I figured there must be better options out there and probably ones with powerful features I could utilise. I wasn't wrong. There were quite a number. I settled on one that I have been incredibly happy with and appears to be rock solid with some amazing features. I expect I'll blog about quite a few of the ways I'm using my new file manager; starting today with just a simple little tweak that I found rather useful that involves another file management tool I use on a frequent basis.

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