Ajarn Mark Caldwell Blog

Bringing Business Sense to the IT World…

How to Manage Technical Employees

In my current position as Software Engineering Manager I have been through a lot of ups and downs with staffing, ranging from laying-off everyone who was on my team as we went through the great economic downturn in 2007-2008, to numerous rounds of interviewing and hiring contractors, full-time employees, and converting some contractors to employee status. Read more →

Guessing Excel Data Types

Note to Self HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Jet\4.0\Engines\Excel: TypeGuessRows = 0 means scan everything. Note to Others About 10 years ago I stumbled across this bit of information just when I needed it and it saved my project. Read more →

Announcing Baby Ben

Happy to announce the arrival of Benjamin Micah Caldwell. Mother and baby are both doing well. Big sister thinks he’s just another baby doll for her to play with. Sleep is at a premium, but everyone is adapting well. Read more →


This is one of those things that you probably know, but have not run into it lately. That was the case for me recently as I was troubleshooting an issue in someone else's code, and spent several hours on it before stumbling across this cause. Read more →

Twitter Follow-Up

A few months ago, I announced that I was going to do a test-run with Twitter. So now I thought I'd share a few thoughts. Probably the most telling bit of evidence that shows how my test of Twitter went, is that I haven't posted anything to my Twitter account since December 5th, a whopping 3 weeks after I started, and two and a half months ago. Read more →

Off-Topic: Understanding the Financial Crisis

Since we're all super-geniuses, I'm sure you don't really need this, but you might "know a guy" who does, and you can pass this along... I stumbled upon some really good, short videos on the Marketplace Whiteboard that explain in layman's terms what the heck has been going on in the U. Read more →

Late to the Party

UPDATE: Removed bad link and added some commentary. OK, Damian, I get it now. For those of you who weren't in the conversation, Damian (a.k.a. Merkin) was giving me a bad time about being a laggard in regard to Windows Live Writer. Read more →