Never miss an invoice or an important email with Microsoft Power Automate

Featured photo of a waterflow representing Microsoft Power Automate
Featured photo of a waterflow representing Microsoft Power Automate
Photo from Unsplash

Introduction

I’ve been using Microsoft Power Automate for a while now to keep track of my monthly utility and energy bills, as well as other important communication. …


Fancy something different today?

Twitch logo on a background created using Canva.
Twitch logo on a background created using Canva.
Twitch logo on a background created using Canva.

Introduction

Do you have a prerecorded video that you’d like to live-stream to Twitch? Sure, there’s a bunch of tools out there that will allow you to upload prerecorded videos not only to Twitch but also to YouTube and Facebook Live, but wouldn’t you like to try doing it the old-school way?

All humour aside, this article is meant for novelty purposes only. I’m hoping that some readers will be fascinated to learn something that they might have not known of before, just like I did when I learnt this.

Step 1: Setting up your Livestream

Hopefully, if you are reading this, you might already have a Twitch account. If not, it’s fairly straightforward to sign up. After you’ve logged in, click on your profile on the top-right of the screen to bring up a dropdown. From the dropdown, click on Video Producer. …


A three-stage process to automating a release pipeline

Photo from Unsplash blended with Azure DevOps and Netlify logo.
Photo from Unsplash blended with Azure DevOps and Netlify logo.
Photo from Unsplash blended with Azure DevOps and Netlify logo.

Introduction

I recently deployed a static website to Netlify from the Azure DevOps release pipeline. Although my source code was in a Git repository, I couldn’t connect my repository to Netlify straight away as Netlify only supports GitHub, GitLab, and BitBucket at the moment. Instead, I had to take another route which I will expand upon here. In this article, I’ve recreated the scenario and have highlighted the approach I took to solve the problem at hand.

Assumptions

For the sake of brevity, let’s assume a few things:

  • You’re familiar with Azure DevOps.
  • We have a build pipeline set up that runs every time code is checked into the master branch and creates a deployment package — a ZIP file with the website contents — as the output of this build pipeline. …


The time when Cloudflare went down and took a large piece of the internet with it and how the CEO handled the situation

An image of Superman symbolising leadership in a difficult situation.
An image of Superman symbolising leadership in a difficult situation.
Photo by Yogi Purnama on Unsplash

Crisis leadership is the actions a leader can take before, during, and after a crisis to effectively reduce the duration and impact of these extremely difficult situations [1]. While many companies and the people running these companies have a crisis plan in place, they may not have actually tested their plans, or the plans may be inadequate. Tough times like this really puts ones character to test. This article aims at reflecting how Matthew Prince, the CEO of Cloudflare, dealt with a recent outage at Cloudflare which had a significant impact on the internet.

“Faced with crisis, the man of character falls back on himself. He imposes his own stamp of action, takes responsibility for it, makes it his own.” …


Demystifying the process of creating low-content and no-content books

Examples of low content books published by Clyde D’Souza on Amazon.
Examples of low content books published by Clyde D’Souza on Amazon.
Examples of low-content and no-content books I’ve published on Amazon. Copyright © Clyde D’Souza.

Introduction

I’ve recently completed publishing over 50 low-content and no-content paperback books on Amazon and thought it would be the perfect time to pause and reflect on the journey so far. I also wanted to document the process of creating and publishing a book. I’m hoping you’ll find this useful!

No-content and low-content books

Like no content at all? Yes, pretty much.

Unlike a regular storybook, no-content books have no written content at all. Examples of books in this category would be sketchbooks, colouring books, and ruled and bullet journals.

As you might have guessed, low-content books contain very little written content in it. Examples of books in this category would be a daily schedule planner, writing prompt journals, sketchbooks, colouring books, ruled and bullet journals, and crossword and sudoku puzzle books. …


A problem-solving approach to re-skinning a table using CSS

Image of a beige stool with an overlay of bright colours — both from Unsplash
Image of a beige stool with an overlay of bright colours — both from Unsplash
Okay, not a table, but a beige stool with an overlay of bright colours — both from Unsplash

Introduction

I recently came across a unique problem whose solution relied solely on CSS. I thought I must document it and explain the process of coming up with a solution for those intrigued.

Problem

I’m going to recreate the scenario — I need to re-skin the tables on a website and the given requirements tell me that the background colour of the table header must be yellow, and the table rows will be the alternating background colour of wheat and plum. Below is a picture of what the table can look like.

Image showing the accepted outputs for the tables
Image showing the accepted outputs for the tables
Accepted outputs for the tables

I have two tables on the website, however, the HTML structure of both the tables is different. One makes use of a <thead> and <tbody> element to distinguish the table’s header from the body. The HTML looks something like the snippet below. …


Rapid application development using OutSystems

Astronaut, mobile and space background from Unsplash. Translucent logo of OutSystems behind the astronaut.
Astronaut, mobile and space background from Unsplash. Translucent logo of OutSystems behind the astronaut.
Astronaut, mobile and space background from Unsplash. Translucent logo of OutSystems behind the astronaut.

Introduction

Let’s say product X costs $3.99 for 295g and product Y costs $8.99 for 591g, do you know which one is actually cheaper? Now, if I tell you that 100g of product X costs $1.35 and 100g of product Y costs $1.52, wouldn’t that make it much easier to decide which one is cheaper?

To calculate the price per 100g, you would require this formula (100 / Quantity) * Price. The problem is, every time you are in a supermarket, you can’t be recalling the formula and calculating the price of products in your head (unless you’re super fast in Math). …


Creating SQL statements using Excel formula’s

Person, city background and fireworks — all from Unsplash. Excel logo on the t-shirt.
Person, city background and fireworks — all from Unsplash. Excel logo on the t-shirt.
Person, city background and fireworks — all from Unsplash. Excel logo on the t-shirt.

Introduction

I’ve been in this situation too many times where I’ve had to go creative with using Excel to make my work with SQL easier. You might be wondering how? Well, then you’re in the right place — read on to find out how. For those of you who know what I’m talking about, feel free to give it a clap if this resonates with what you’ve experienced.

Problem

Imagine you have been given a huge list of data in Excel that needs to be entered into the database. …


An article on using Azure service connection

Photo from Unsplash with a brightened Azure DevOps and Azure logo.
Photo from Unsplash with a brightened Azure DevOps and Azure logo.
Photo from Unsplash with a brightened Azure DevOps and Azure logo.

Introduction

I recently had to set up a new Azure service connection in Azure DevOps and I couldn’t use the default authentication method because I wasn’t the owner of the Azure subscription. I had to, therefore, use the service principal route to get everything connected. I’ve recreated the scenario and have highlighted the steps in this article.

Creating a new service connection

Let’s start by creating a new service connection in Azure DevOps. Head to the service connections page using the URL https://dev.azure.com/<Organisation>/<Project>/_settings/adminservices. Replace <Organisation> and <Project> with the appropriate values.

Select Azure Resource Manager from the options listed and then select Service principal (manual). …


Empower your digital life while keeping yourself occupied

Image for post
Image for post
Photo from Unsplash edited with various additional elements [sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]

Introduction

Coronavirus is forcing most of us on this planet to stay indoors. With all this surplus time in hand, people are finding different things to do to keep themselves entertained and most importantly, occupied. Why not use this time for something productive? Why not declutter your digital life? Here’s a few things you can do.

Reviewing social media activities

Over time you would have liked endless pages, joined various groups, followed a bunch of people and subscribed to a number of different channels. While it made sense to do so at that time, you may no longer appreciate that affiliation. This is a great time for you to go through all your social media profiles and, with a heavy heart, un-like the pages you no longer find useful, leave that group whose contents simply spam your feed, unfollow those people who don’t really add value to the time you spend on that platform, and unsubscribe from those channels whose videos make no sense to where you are in your life at this stage. …

About

Clyde D'Souza

Software developer. Teaches online at @skillshare. Created @lightnsparknpo. Author of http://mamatellmeastory.clydedsouza.net

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