Meeting Recap for February, 2004

Hi everyone,

I have to admit I was very happy with the turnout for our February 2004 GRAFUG Meeting. We didn't have a formal topic and the meeting fell on Valentine's Day so I didn't expect very many people to show. Boy was I wrong!! We had about a dozen people show up!!

Thanks everyone!!Thanks again to Jan Wells for the donuts .. we all appreciated them!!

We had a lot of discussions so here's a recap of what I can remember!! There's a lot here so please read through it all.

Upcoming Conferences

The conference was previously called Essential Fox. This year they are expanding and running 3 tracks; Essential Fox, Essential .NET, and Essential SQL. Then next price break is February 28, 2004. They are offering a $50 discount to user group members.

The next price break expires March 31, 2004. DevTeach is proud to announce its user groups rebate program. We are offering 50.00$ off the registration cost to all members of user groups registered with INETA or to the Universal Thread. To benefit of this rebate, members need to enter a rebate code when processing their registration. This rebate can be combined with the early bird discount which gives a 200.00$ rebate until March 31st. User group leaders can request this rebate code by sending an email to jrroy@devteach.com.

The early bird registration expires August 16, 2004. Advisor is sponsoring other events at the same hotel. I'm not sure whether you can cross over, but if you're interested in any of the other events, contact Advisor for more information.

I need your help!

As you may already know, Microsoft is making major changes to the Report Writer in VFP 9.0. I'd like to solicit your feedback on scenarios that are difficult to do .. or downright impossible .. in the current versions of VFP. My goal is to analyze the newest version and see if it can handle these situations. If so, I will be including them in a white paper for MSDN. Please send your ideas and suggestions to me, Cathy Pountney, at cathy@frontier2000.com. Be sure to include VFP Report Writer in the subject line so I don't accidently delete the emails with all of my spam!!

You can help with a new book

The following message was sent out by Marsee Henon (marsee@oreilly.com). Please feel free to send on your comments, suggestions or ideas.

Subject: Excel Annoyances Needed for New Book

Hey User Group Leader,

O'Reilly is pulling together a new book called "Excel Annoyances" and we'd like your help! As you might guess from the title, this book aims to identify the problems, snarls, quirks, bugs, and just dumb thingsabout Excel that drive users nuts. Oh yeah--it also aims to solve these annoyances, too.

If any members of your group use Excel--be they newbies or Excel masters--and they have annoyances they'd like to see solved, have them email me (marsee@oreilly.com) with "Excel Annoyance" in the subject line. Just have them note what version of Excel and Windows (or MacOS) they're using.

Thanks for sharing. We'll make sure to get copies of "Excel Annoyances" sent to your group shortly after publication.--Marsee

Cool Tools

Cathy Pountney demonstrated the latest version of SnagIt. This utility is used to capture screen shots and is a must-have for anyone doing software documentation!! You can capture screenshots of windows, specific areas, menus, and a really cool feature -- scrolling windows. It also has a number of editing features. I urge you to check out the website (www.techsmith.com).

Amazingly, this product sells for less than $40!! By the time the demonstration was over, several people were interested in buying it. Rick Bean has contacted the company to see if we can get a user group discount for purchasing multiple copies. It appears that they are willing to do so. I don't have all the details yet .. but if anyone is interested in purchasing this product, please send me your name, company name, and the number of copies you'd like. I'll coordinate this information with Rick Bean and we'll get back to you about the discount level we can get.

Mike Potjer showed us a product called Konxise. This product compresses and encrypts a VFP exe. Mike said he is getting about a 50% compression rate on his application. It costs $299 and can be ordered from Hallogram Publishing (www.hallogram.com). They also have a 30-day evaluation copy available.

Glenn Domeracki demonstrated how he uses Bind Events in his application. He showed some cool was to create "behavior" classes and then bind controls to one or more behavior.

Raffle

DBI Technologies offered GRAFUG 3 copies of their Calendar control to raffle off. The winners were:

Congrats to all!!

In addition to the raffle, DBI Technologies is also offering a 20% discount to all user group members on their Studio Controls with Subscription. This offer is valid until March 14, 2004. If you’re interested, and your membership dues are up-to-date, contact me and I’ll get you the form for receiving this discount.

Cool websites

Rick Bean suggested that everyone visit www.msdn.microsoft.com/community/vfoxpro.asp for links to a variety of sites that are helpful to developers. His favorite is the Tek-Tips Forum which he said is very professional and isn't full of all the "noise" that some of the other forums, such as the UT, are cluttered with. Here are some others he suggested:

Upcoming meeting

The March meeting is scheduled for March 13, 2004. So far we don’t have a topic lined up but we’re working on it!! Mike Potjer may be able to resurrect his Stonefield Database Toolkit presentation. Mike Timpe also volunteered to research the Testing Harness included in VFP and present this topic in the future. If you’d like to volunteer for any future presentations, please contact me!!

Meeting change

In looking ahead, the April meeting falls during Spring Break and the Easter holiday. Therefore, we are going to change the April meeting to the 3rd Saturday of the month (April 17). We also discussed whether people want to permanently change our meeting date. This conversation was started by some other user groups that are trying to coordinate meeting dates in hopes of sharing big-name speakers. During our discussions, several people are firm on keeping it on a weekend because of traveling longer distances. Now that MMFUDG isn't having their meetings on the 3rd Saturday of the month, it was suggested that we switch from the 2nd Saturday to the 3rd Saturday. There really didn't seem to be anyone that had any strong opinions on this suggestion. If you have any opinions either way, please send them to me. I'll compile the responses and see if there is an overwhelming request to change the meeting date.

FOX ROCKS!!
 
*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*
Cathy Pountney
GRAFUG Secretary
pountneyc@optimalinternet.com
www.grafug.com
www.optimalinternet.com
www.evideon.com

NOTE: If you’d like to be removed from our mailing list just reply to this message and let me know. 

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