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Dave Cortright
Silicon Valley, CA
Technologist · Designer · Environmentalist · Conservationist · Vegan · Singer
Recent Activity
The Centre for Effective Altruism in the UK runs a great website called 80000hours.org. I only just signed up a couple of weeks ago on the recommendation of a respected advisor, and so far it looks really great. Sign up for their weekly email series to get it pushed to... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I always tried to use the space bar to play and pause YouTube videos, but if the focus isn't in the video player itself, it always scrolls the page down. Well no more! I now use the K key to play/pause, and J to jump back 10 seconds. L also... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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Wow, this is huge. For the longest time I thought the only way to get a movie to play in PowerPoint using just a presentation remote was to change the Play setting to Automatically. The default value is On Click, but that never worked; a click would just take you... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I previously blogged about Google’s site: search operator (which also works in other search engines). You can create shortcuts for commonly-used sites in Chrome using the Search Engines setting. It helps if you have a bit of knowledge about how URL parameters work, but even if you don’t, just follow... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
It’s surprising that this still isn’t fixed. But yes—when you save a Word doc to PDF or try to print to PDF—it completely removes all of the hyperlinks. It’s insidious because it leaves the blue underlined text styling in place. But that’s all it is: styled text. This does work... Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
This is actually a simple yet brilliant idea. Since the first line of defense of any tech problem with the network is the reboot the modem and router, why not do it preemptively to prevent the problems from happening in the first place? This outlet timer is designed specifically for... Continue reading
Posted Sep 12, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
It’s a common scenario: you need to send some sensitive information to a colleague or friend, and you know that email is not the way to do it. Instant messaging isn’t any more secure. You could use chat: Skype, WhatsApp, or best of all Signal. But that requires that you... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Google Alerts is my go-to utility for keeping up on the latest news about a particular topic. It allows you to search not only news sources but also the whole web in general. It's great for obscure topics that don’t get mainstream coverage. And you can use search operators to... Continue reading
Posted Sep 8, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
Most people know about Cmd Tab keyboard shortcut on the Mac (Alt Tab on Windows) which lets you switch among open apps without touching the mouse. Back in my early days as a UX designer, I extended this concept to the key right above Tab—the tilde (technically grave accent, but... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I previously posted about All the Free Stock for stock photos. Unsplash is another option. And of course there is Flickr’s Creative Commons search. While we are exploring the space, here are a few others I found using the most excellent Google related search: Pexels · Pixbay · StockSnap.io ·... Continue reading
Posted Sep 1, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
For our events, we have slide show presentations. But we also want content on the screen during the breaks before, after and between talks. There are 3 viable options: Show a static image, such as a logo, event graphic or just a boring black screen Show an ordered slide show... Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
This can be done for any line of text, but I find it most useful for phone number (or other words and numbers containing hyphens). <span style="white-space:nowrap;">123-456-7890</span> Here is an example where the phone number wraps to the next line: 123-456-7890 And here is an example where the span keeps... Continue reading
Posted Aug 30, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I was working on a campaign page that has an embedded donate form in it. When I first set up the thank you page, it loaded within the form. This created essentially a page within a page, and it didn't look very professional. However I found that by simply replacing... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I love this story from Richard Feynman about how he understood how to best manage a group of young, smart, driven engineers—tell them the problem they are trying to solve and then stay out of the way. The real trouble was that no one had ever told these fellows anything.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2017 at KPAO by Dave Cortright
A partner of ours just had a web site outage and didn't notice until I reported it to them. This was a particularly insidious one as the site was showing a page (so it was technically "up"), but the page was completely blank. These sorts of things have happened to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
There are a few things I am particularly proud of doing. One is moving to an Extended Validation certificate that encrypts our entire web site. When I did this 2½ years ago, pretty much none of the big wildlife conservation orgs had certificates on their main website content. (Of course... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
As our org has grown, the demands on our internet usage have also grown. We started out using consumer-grade routers, moved up to high-end gaming routers with QoS, and finally we got big enough that we had to move to real enterprise-level networking. I did the research and decided to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 23, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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I was trying to solve this problem with just CSS, but I'm pretty convinced it isn't possible. That's too bad, since it means I cannot use it in email messages. But it will work in web pages. The solution is based on Jon’s great answer on this StackOverflow question. I... Continue reading
Posted Aug 22, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I recently had to create new thank you and receipt emails for our donation system. Creating an email from scratch is not recommended as there are so many different email clients out there. Most notably there is Outlook that has extreme limitations on what works and what doesn't. Couple that... Continue reading
Posted Aug 21, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
You absolutely need a good plain text editor to do any sort of basic text file manipulations. I love TextWrangler. Unfortunately the app has been discontinued. But they do have a pro-level text editor app called BBEdit. You can use it in unlicensed form, and it will probably do everything... Continue reading
Posted Aug 19, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I previously blogged about running a Windows VM on your Mac to do IE and Edge browser testing. But if you want something even more lightweight, Microsoft has a page where you can enter a link to your site and it will come back with screen grabs of the site... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I was trying to set opacity on the background of an HTML container (DIV) element. But if I used opacity:.5 style, it also sets the opacity of children elements inside. And this cannot be overridden by setting opacity:1 on those children elements. The workaround is to set the opacity as... Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
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HTML email messages are fragile things. One possibility you have to be prepared for is how it looks if the images do not load. Maybe the image host is down, maybe the device is offline, or maybe the viewer’s email client is blocking images for security or bandwidth issues. My... Continue reading
Posted Aug 14, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I had to set up DNS for a micro-site that my org just launched this week. I was surprised that there wasn't good documentation out there on how to do this. First, I set up the MX records to get the email working with G Suite/Gmail. It was working fine... Continue reading
Posted Aug 11, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits
I was working on a donate form recently. The code that created and managed the cart was a library that couldn’t be easily changed. But I needed to customize some of the labels. So I used CSS pseudo classes. There are two ways I ended up doing it. The first... Continue reading
Posted Aug 11, 2017 at Info Tech for Non-Profits