Category Archives: Technology

Microsoft Error of the Day

So at my place of work we use Microsoft Outlook 2010 and Skype For Business (which is Microsoft Lync 2013).  Earlier this week I started having issues with meeting requests.  For certain people when I would add them to a meeting and try to submit/update the meeting I would get the following error popup:

“The request failed.  Please try again.  Make sure that you are signed into Skype for Business.”

I had never had this error happen before.  I checked and I was clearly logged into Skype for Business.  I could add my local team to meetings fine but it seemed that those outside of my realm were having the issue.

Today, I started googling to see if I could find a solution to this annoying problem.  Fortunately I found an obscure post on the Skype community forum here.

What I found is that there is an auto-complete cache in Outlook.  Auto-complete kicks in when you start typing an email address in an email or meeting request and if that email address is “known” then it will go ahead and complete that email address for you with you having to type the entire text.

A person that was having this same issue said that they cleared their auto-complete cache and then the problem went away.  So off into the Outlook options I went to see if this might work for me.  If you go into your Outlook options screen and then click on the Mail section you will find under the “Send Messages” section a little button that says “Empty Auto-Complete List”:

Microsoft Outlook Skype Error

So I clicked this button.  Crossed my fingers and then closed Outlook. Next I reopened Outlook and went back to one of the meeting requests that I was having issues with.  I added the person that was causing the error and this time it worked fine.  Problem solved!

The moral of the story is if you start having weird problems in Outlook with Skype then try clearing your auto-complete cache.  Also just because Microsoft says the issue is because of one thing doesn’t necessarily mean it has anything to do with that thing.

Hopefully this will help someone else out there that might have the same issue.  Have a splendid day!

Will Rising Star Really Rise to the Top?


As I’m writing this it’s five minutes until a new reality show called Rising Star is about to premiere on ABC. Is a new singing competition which is not new. What is new about this show is that it’s live and you the viewer get to participate in the voting. As contestants sing they do so on front of this huge wall of screens. People at home using the Rising Star app will vote yes or no for the performer as they are singing. If the contestant gets enough votes the wall will rise and the performer moves on. If enough votes are not received them the wall stays down and its the end of the road for the performer.

What’s interesting to me will be how well the interactive app works and if this new element will cause this show to “rise to the top”. I installed the app on my tablet earlier and about one minute before the show began I got an alert in my notifications bar. This certainly seems promising,

So the show has just started. I’ll be posting my thoughts as the show progresses. Stay tuned for updates.

Will You Switch to AT&T to get the New Amazon Fire Phone?

Amazon Fire PhoneSo Amazon has just made its step into the mobile phone arena wit the unveiling of the Amazon Fire Phone.  I’m very much interested in the mobile devices right now because it’s time for me to upgrade to a new phone.  I’m currently using a Samsung Galaxy Nexus which has now become about extinct by mobile phone standards.  The Nexus was the first phone to come out with Google’s Android 4.0 and was it just happened to come out around the time I was last due a phone upgrade.  So after evaluating all the choices I settled on the Nexus and have not regretted it.

Due to the age of my Nexus, it’s having trouble handling all the new apps I put on it so I’m really anxious to upgrade to a new phone.  I was due an upgrade back in February and was very much hoping that Samsung’s Galaxy S5 would be the phone I would get, but after seeing the specs. it just was not quite on part with what myself and many others hoped it would be.  Sure it’s a great phone and would be much better than what I have right now, but since I only upgrade every couple of years (like 2 – 3) then I want something that is going to last.

I then set my sights on the rumors that Samsung would be coming out with a premium phone that would be a follow-up to the S5.  It has been referred to as the “S5 Prime” and more recently as the “Galaxy F”.  According to rumors this phone will have the specs. that I’m looking for in my next phone.   I’ve been watching the news feeds daily in order to get an idea of when this new Samsung phone will release.  Some reports were saying end of June while others are now saying it might be September.  I really don’t want to wait until September for my next phone but I don’t want to settle for less than I had hoped for either.  Such a dilemma for a techno-geek like me.

Yesterday, out of the blue, I found out about Amazon releasing this new “Fire Phone”.  Since I had been keeping tabs on the mobile phone news I was really surprised that I had not heard about this before.  I don’t know if I had just missed it on the rumor chain or if Amazon just did a very good job at keeping this under wraps.  I mean it doesn’t surprise me that Amazon would try to enter the mobile phone market.  They have been pushing their tablets for a while now so edging into the mobile arena makes sense in many ways.

The Fire Phone has two main features that they are promoting which helps it stand above the rest of the current devices.  First, the Fire Phone has something called dynamic perspective.  This new feature which I don’t think exists on any other phone to date, allows you to view things on your phone in a way we’ve never seen before.  It gives you a sort of 3D view to photos, images, and stuff on your phone.  Just by tilting or turning your phone the perspective of what you see will change.   I think dynamic perspective is a cool feature, but I’m wondering how practical it will be.  Right now it just seems to be more hype to sell the phone then something that will really be useful everyday.

The other feature of this phone that Amazon is pushing is something called “Firefly”.  By pressing the Firefly button you can use your phone to instantly identify printed web and email addresses.  It can recognize phone numbers, QR codes, artwork, and millions of items.  You can identify songs, TV shows, products that you take a photo of, etc.  To me this sounds very much like Google’s Goggles app.  That app. would allow you to take a photo of a product or place and it would perform a Google search for it to tell you more about it.  It sounds like Amazon has done the same thing but taken it to a whole new level to make it easier for consumer use.

The specs. on this phone are not that bad.  I don’t think it’s as good overall as the S5 is but the Fire phone is certainly a contender and has certainly given me another option to look at in my search for my next great smartphone.  Amazon is also throwing in one year of their Prime service to sweeten the deal.  This gives you access to their streaming videos, music, and allows you to “borrow” e-books from the Kindle store.  You also give free two-day shipping on many Amazon products with the Prime service.  It certainly is a bonus for anyone wanting this phone.

The big issue for me is that Amazon’s new phone  is exclusively available through AT&T.  I currently have my service with Verizon Wireless.  I’ve been a long-time Verizon customer and so the question comes down to is this new phone worth the hassle of switching to AT&T.  I’ve had many customer service issues with AT&T in the past when I was one of their customers.  So far I’ve never had any major issues with Verizon.  I’m quite happy with Verizon and their coverage so I’m not really motivated to move away.  I’m also not one that likes to get locked in to a certain company’s products.  Like the Apple and their iPhone, Amazon seems to be trying to provide a one-stop provide everything experience.  I’ve not used Amazon’s fire operating system yet, so it will be interesting to see how easy it will be to install other apps. on their phone.  If I want to get my music from say, Google, instead of Amazon, will their be any issues doing this?  I’ll be watching the reviews to see how this shakes out.

It’s great to see some other competition enter the smartphone sector.  I will be watching carefully to see how Amazon stands up against the big players like Apple, Samsung, and Google.

In the mean time I will be weighing my options and watching the latest news feeds to see if I can determine what my next phone would be.  I would love to hear your feedback about this?  Would you switch to AT&T for this new Fire phone?  Comment below and leave me your thoughts.

A Car That Flies

So I’ve been slacking a little when it comes to my personal blog, but I’m really going to try to change that.  Anyone that knows me will tell you that I spend the majority of my life in front of a computer.  So I figure I might as well blog about some of the things that I come across online.

Today I was looking though my Facebook timeline and saw a photo for a “flying car”.  The geek in me immediately perked up and I had to click the link to check it out.  What I found out is there is the company based out of Massachusetts which has developed a plane/car hybrid.  The CEO of the company says to think of it as “a plane that drives.”

The concept vehicle is a four-seat hybrid car with wings and can fly up to 200 MPH.    You don’t even have to have a runway to take off.  By using  a megawatt of power the folding motor pods will lift you off the ground.  Once in the air, the propellers on the pods will fold down to allow for cruising speed.  When you are done in the air you can land the vehicle and then drive it like a car.

I am really excited to see if this actually becomes a reality.  The car of the future that will allow us to travel greater distances with ease.  The company claims that the vehicle will fly itself–you just tell it where it wants to go.  How cool.

Check out their website here at  You can also see the promo video below.