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Jeroen W. Pluimers on .NET, C#, Delphi, databases, and personal interests

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Archive for January 29th, 2015

The curse of getting electronic invoices

Posted by jpluimers on 2015/01/29

I’m getting nuts with all these companies insisting on sending digital invoices or receipts.

The worst is that each and every company has figured a way that works well for them, but is slightly different from all the other vendors. You’d think there are not that many degrees of freedom. There are.

A lot of them aren’t even invoices, as they miss valuable information (for instance Dutch ones lacking chamber of commerce or VAT numbers) or they sent you a ton of stuff where invoice is not called invoice or receipt at all.

Others send you an order confirmation, payment confirmation, shipping estimate, shipping confirmation, rating reminder, pro-forma invoice. But no invoice.

The attachments are horrible. Some send them as PDF, some just HTML mail, like with images that need to be downloaded but are gone after a while. Others even send Word documents, CSV files, or Excel sheets. Of the paged documents, they are often formatted for Letter (hey, there is a whole world out there with A4!).

It gets really painful when you need to go on-line to retrieve the attachment. Sometimes a cookie suffices. Sometimes you need to login. The worst are when during login, they disable auto password entry in a browser.

Some of the attachments (even PDFs!) contain just a bitmap image of the invoice: no OCR, not searchable. is known for this.

Talking about they managed to send me a German order confirmation. With dates in Spanish (as I found out through Google Translate of 26 de enero de 2015):

And many of the invoices lack key information to relate them to bank account or credit card statements: transaction numbers not matching or completely gone.

This used to be so easy in the past when we had paper invoices. Once every month or so, I sat down, ripped open all the envelopes, sorted them into categories (private, company, etc), did payments.
When the statements come in, just put the right ones with the right statements and hand over to the book keeper that does the tax filings. Simple and took an hour or so!

I spent most of today figuring out all the electronic invoices of last quarter (the paper stuff took me like 30 minutes).


Posted in Fun, LifeHacker, Opinions, Power User | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

What do I do if Dropbox is stuck syncing, won’t launch, or reports an error? (Dropbox Help Center)

Posted by jpluimers on 2015/01/29

These tips usually won’t help: What do I do if Dropbox is stuck syncing, won’t launch, or reports an error? (Dropbox Help Center).

This one does help, but you need to terminate the Dropbox.exe process through Taskmanager first: How to Solve Dropbox Problems Syncing – LockerGnome.

Currently dropbox sync stalls after 50-300 files are transferred.


Posted in DropBox, SocialMedia | Leave a Comment »

ASCII is not just an RFC. It is an Internet Standard, but only recently.

Posted by jpluimers on 2015/01/29

When people tell you that ASCII is not an Internet Standard but an RFC. They are wrong. They used to be right though. Until 2015-01-12, when IETF declared the RFC 20 to be an Internet Standard: status-change-rfc20-ascii-format-to-standard-00.

So after more than 45 years (like many good things, the ASCII RFC is from 1969), it is not just an American Standard but an Internet Standard (:

Thanks Lauren Weinstein for sharing and Kristian Köhntopp for pointing to the reclassification.


via: ASCII – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Posted in ASCII, Development, Encoding, History, Software Development | Leave a Comment »

CodeInspect says “Hello World”: A new Reverse-Engineering Tool for Android and Java Bytecode – via: Secure Software Engineering

Posted by jpluimers on 2015/01/29

Thanks  for mentioning this, so it got on my research list:

a new reverse-engineering framework that works on the intermediate representation Jimple and supports all the features above and a lot more.

CodeInspect supports as input format a complete Android Application Package (apk), just the Android bytecode (dex-file) or a jar-file.

In the following we will describe the different features based on a malicious Android apk.

The figure above is a screenshot of CodeInspect. As one can see, CodeInspect is based on the Eclipse RCP framework


via: CodeInspect says “Hello World”: A new Reverse-Engineering Tool for Android and Java Bytecode | Secure Software Engineering.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Android, Development, Java, Java Platform, Mobile Development, Software Development | Leave a Comment »

Some links to Delphi Unit Testing history

Posted by jpluimers on 2015/01/29

Unit testing has been here for a long time, and so has Unit Testing in Delphi. Below a summary of historic links together with some notes on how the state of affairs changed over the years.

Charlie Calvert

I’ll start with one of the first large Delphi Unit Testing articles was a paper by Charlie Calvert summarizing the state of the art on Delphi Unit Testing in 2004. It is present in the wayback machine as DUnit Talk and on his site.

Note that the site is sometimes slow or hard to reach. Since his evangelist days at Borland/CodeGear, Charlie has moved through a few evangelist jobs at Falafel and Microsoft and finally went back to his old profession: being a great teacher – this time at Bellevue Collegeoften using script based languages and cloud computing, with less focus on his web-presence.

Many of his IT books (during his writing period, he wrote both as Charles Calvert and Charlie Calvert) are still relevant though.

DUnit; Juanco Añez Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Agile, Conference Topics, Conferences, Delphi, Dependency Injection, Design Patterns, Development, Event, FreePascal, History, Inversion of Control / IoC, Pascal, Software Development | 3 Comments »

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