Parallels 11 and Windows 10 product key workaround

Something’s apparently broken but I don’t know if it’s on the Parallels or Windows side. If you don’t provide your product key before installing Windows 10 via Parallels 11 on your Mac, you may run into the problem where the dialog that Windows allows you to provide your product key for activation doesn’t ever get shown. Not being able to get to that dialog means you’re stuck with an unactivated copy of Windows 10 on your machine. There is a way around it though: you can provide your Windows product key via the Command Prompt.  More

Using Google Analytics on a Chrome extension

I recently built a Chrome extension called Linksmith (more information here) and hooked it up to Google Analytics for some very basic usage information. It turned out to be a bit trickier than previous times I’ve added Analytics to websites as Chrome extensions are a bit different (security settings and the ‘chrome://’ protocol).

There’s an official tutorial available that you should use to get going. If it works for you, congrats! I wasn’t so lucky though. I saw a back and forth with the service under the debugger, but the request to get the critical __utm.gif file wasn’t happening. If you find yourself in the same boat, read on in case the code I ended up using works for you as it did for me. More

SpotiPeek

I listen to a lot of different playlists on Spotify and find myself frequently having to restore the Spotify window to see what band’s song is playing or song’s name. That doesn’t require a huge effort obviously, but it is kind of distracting when you find yourself doing it every few minutes it can get old. Having it just be a quick glance is far better. That’s what I set out to do with SpotiPeek. It’s small, minimalist, and simple but it does the job for me. Sharing it here in case anyone else finds it useful as well.  More

Pen pressure stops working on Wacom Intuos tablet

I’ve picked up a new hobby lately around digital art (e.g., sketching, drawing, and painting in Adobe Photoshop). One thing that I’ve been struggling with (other than artistic skills) has been losing pressure sensitivity on my Wacom Intuos 5 tablet. I had a little warning icon (an exclamation mark) next to the Control: Pen Pressure option in the Brush panel. Nothing I tried seemed to get rid of that warning and I wasted at least a couple hours because of it.

I searched the web tons and many solutions that seemed to work for others didn’t for me. E.g., replacing the pen nib, starting Photoshop with the pen instead of the mouse, installing the latest drivers, etc. I eventually did manage to figure out work around my problem and I’m sharing the steps below in case they help someone else. More