Search

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.


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.

Click to read more ...

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.

Click to read more ...

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.

Click to read more ...

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.

Click to read more ...

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.

Click to read more ...

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.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep012016

Say No to Folders in Workflow

As I mentioned in yesterday's post I have quite a few Workflow app workflows on my iOS devices. Like many other long time Workflow users I'm looking forward to having a better way to keep track of and structure my collection of Workflows. However unlike everyone else I don't want folders...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Aug312016

Count Your Workflows

I spend quite a bit of time experimenting with the Workflow App by the folks over at DeskConnect. It's an iOS application that brings Mac automator-style automation into the palm of your hand. As a result of my experimentations I've built up quite a library of workflows and whilst I wait for some sort of structure for the workflows I've come up with a few little tricks, notations and workflows to help me keep things organised. I'm going to share one of those with you today.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jul062016

Working with Dropbox Files from Drafts on iOS

Like many who blog I keep a list of topic ideas which I plan to blog about at some point. When I get some time to write I pick a topic that I like the look of and get some word thrashed out. I was surprised when I saw something in last week's MacStories members' newsletter that directly related to something rather niche I had on my list.

As I expect you've already guessed, this post is about that particular topic. It's about getting text to and from the iOS app Drafts from Dropbox.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jun302016

Quick File Duplication in Windows

I love finding little shortcuts to help me get things done. Sometimes it's through automation of processes I do occasionally and sometimes its through speeding up something smaller that I need to do frequently. In this post I want to share something that definitely falls into the latter category. Duplicating files in Windows Explorer.

Click to read more ...