Monthly Archives: February 2010

Soon to be launched…

EN: Economy-x-Talk The past six months, Economy-x-Talk has been working on a website for the German speaking part of the world. The website is to be launched this weekend or during next week. Please, keep an eye on

DE: Die letzten sechs Monate hat Economy-x-Talk an eine Webseite für die Deutschsprachige Länder gearbeitet…. Die Webseite geht dieses Wochenende oder im Laufe der nächsten Woche on-line. Bitte, behalte im Auge!

Why can’t I build a standalone with RunRev?

What to do when building standalones goes mysteriously wrong?

– try removing passwords from stacks

– try toggling the destroyStack property

– check whether pictures are referenced or imported as controls

– make sure that pictures are in the correct location relative to your stack

– make sure to use relative file paths for portability

– select “Select inclusions” instead of “Search for required inclusions” on the General pane of the standalone application settings

– after selecting “Select inclusions”, make sure that you actually include all components that you need for your stack, this may involve knowing for sure what each component does

– you might try to forget about profiles, just select “Remove all”

– if you build for multipe platforms, try building for one platform at a time

– quit and restart Revolution without saving your project right after building a standalone

– quit and restart Revolution after saving your project and before building a standalone

– when moving your standalone for Mac OS 9 or Mac OS X to a different computer, make sure to create a sit or zip file of your standalone first

– when uploading your compressed standalone or exe file to a server, make sure that your FTP software treats it as binary

– you might try to build a standalone while suppressing messages (see Development menu)

– you might try to build a standalone while suppressing errors (see Development menu)

– if building standalones takes ages, set the cREVKeepDevelopmentProperties of your mainstack to true

– Error: “A stack “answer dialog” in file (path to my stack) is already in memory. The Revolution UI does not distiguish stacks with have identical names, so editing these stack files which both are in memory could result in data loss.” When the preference “If destroyStack is false, when closing last stack in file:” is set to “Don’t close the file” then a built standalone is partially corrupted or the building process throws errors and aborts. This was not the case with version 3.5. RunRev reports: “I think this issue is related to a certain preference setting. It appears to be fixed in the development builds of the next version of Revolution which are available to our enterprise customers. However if you are using 4.0, I think the problem can be worked around by changing the preference “If destroyStack is false, when closing last stack in file:” to something other than “Ask”. This can be found by doing Edit -> Preferences -> Files & Memory.” I have no confirmation, yet.

Links for start(l)ing Revolution programmers

Here’s a number of very useful links for start(l)ing Revolution programmers: (wow!)

If you know about any additional links and resources that should be added here, please let me know.

You can search the Revolution User Mail List with a FireFox plugin. The plugin is available on the Economy-x-Talk website:
(at the bottom of the page).

About PayPal, Moneybookers, eSellerate, Kagi, 2Checkout

Some time ago, I was looking for a new payments processing option. I have always been using PayPal, because PayPal provides a relatively simple PHP API, which allows me to process payments automatically. However, PayPal

a) requires me to log in every 10 minutes ALL DAY LONG!!! That’s extremely frustrating for web developers.
b) doesn’t provide any support whatsoever; if you write to you get a note that you can’t write to that address and are required to use a web form that doesn’t work and can’t be found anywhere on the web site.
c) always implies the risk of losing your money, when someone claims not to have received your product.
d) doesn’t allow me to display a simple widget in an iframe on my website to complete the entire payment.

When searching for an alternative, it appeared that could have solved most of the problems I encountered with PayPal. Particularly, they would allow me to put a widget-ish thing on my website to process payments and make it look as if the customer never left my website. Unfortunately, Moneybookers requires me to change my password every few weeks. That is an impossible and worthless policy, because:

a) I can’t possibly remember a password that I need to change every few weeks –you need to change your password the instant you start using your account and can’t get access without changing your password– without writing it down, hence causing additional security risks and
b) I have to distribute the password to people I work with, causing security risks each time I have to change the password.

Another problem with Moneybookers is that their support sucks. Moneybookers provides standard answers in reply to support requests and made me feel dumb and foolish. It is never wise to humiliate your clients. The Moneybookers support department was slow: it often took them more than 24 hours to reply, while I needed an instant solution. Additionally, I felt uncomfortable with the many questions Moneybookers asked me, about the products I was going to deliver, who is responsible for delivery, and they even sent me a list of 9(!) items of documents and information that I would have to provide!

Because of the password policy and the retarded, humiliating attitude, I decided to decline Moneybooker’s offer.

I also considered This company has great support and is very helpful. In 3 days, they gave me the same information that Moneybookers needed one entire week for (from my first e-mail until I decided to reject their offer). They replied instantly during business hours, but they let me down as soon as the weekend started in their time zone. Unfortunately, their service provides insufficient flexibility. Particularly the impossibility to create a widget in an iframe put me off. Moreover, their documentation is way too complicated and I couldn’t figure out whether their system would meet my needs.

I never considered eSellerate, because I received a huge load of spam from them, when they started their company. I tend to not trust spammers.

I didn’t consider either, because they seem to be quite inflexible and they are one of the most expensive credit card processors that a shareware producer might use.

The result is that I stayed with the worst of all: PayPal. PayPal is a terrible service, but they are technically superior and provide excellent documentation and libraries, which allowed me to set up an automatic payment and licensing system without asking for any help from support departments and without asking anyone for permission to do whatever I needed to do to get the job done.

If you know about a service that provides the same features and technical superiority as PayPal at the same fees and solves aforementioned problems, I will switch immediately to that service.

Selling Apple Store Parts

Some guy is selling a stair case, allegedly from the Apple Store on 5th Avenue, New York.

From his description on eBay:

It’s from Apple Fifth Ave. in NYC. They have a huge spiral staircase you can see here:

They replaced it with a new one after a customer dropped a snapple bottle on it and cracked it. I picked it up before it could be thrown out over a year ago, figuring it’s a collectible.

When these are new, they cost 10K to buy from the German glass-makers. So, since it’s cracked I figure it’s worth at least $2500, considering the steps are all custom ordered.

You could use it as a coffee table on top of some cinder blocks, or just keep it for the sake of keeping it.

Unfortunately, I can’t deliver it. You’ll need to come pick it up in Brooklyn, NY, and I recommend you bring a car and a friend or two. It weighs about 250 lbs. It’s about 10 layers of very thick glass.

If you’re a collector of Apple memorabilia, you’ve got to have this. I know for a fact that only three of them exist outside of the retail stores’ circulation, and this is one of them. So, needless to say, it’s rare. I doubt it if you’ll ever see something like this again.

You can find this item on . I wonder whether all of it is true and I also wonder whether the guy got fired after taking something from the Apple store that doesn’t belong to him.

Luhn Extended N Algorithm (LENA)

/* The Luhn algorithm or Luhn formula, also known as the “modulus 10” or “mod 10” algorithm, is a simple checksum formula used to validate a variety of identification numbers, such as credit card numbers, IMEI numbers, National Provider Identifier numbers in US and Canadian Social Insurance Numbers. It was created by IBM scientist Hans Peter Luhn and described in U.S. Patent No. 2,950,048, filed on January 6, 1954, and granted on August 23, 1960.

The algorithm is in the public domain and is in wide use today. It is specified in ISO/IEC 7812-1[1]. It is not intended to be a cryptographically secure hash function; it was designed to protect against accidental errors, not malicious attacks. Most credit cards and many government identification numbers use the algorithm as a simple method of distinguishing valid numbers from collections of random digits.

This version:
Luhn Extended N Algorithm (LENA) 1.0 L
copyright © 2010 by Economy-x-Talk
Mark Schonewille
Nijmegen, the Netherlands

For more information, see

This script can be redistributed freely, if unmodified and including al comments and the copyright statement.
local lMap

private function map theData
     put empty into myMap
     repeat for each char myChar in theData
          if myChar is not in myMap then put myChar after myMap
     end repeat
     return myMap
end map

private on luhnInitialise theInput
     put map(theInput) into lMap
end luhnInitialise

private function codePointFromChar theChar
     return offset(theChar,lMap) – 1
end codePointFromChar

private function charFromCodePoint thePoint
     return char thePoint + 1 of lMap
end charFromCodePoint

function generateCheckChar theInput
     put replaceText(theInput,”[W]”,empty) into theInput
     luhnInitialise theInput
     put 2 into myFactor
     put 0 into mySum
     put length(lMap) into n
     repeat with i = length(theInput) down to 1
          put codePointFromChar(char i of theInput) into myCodePoint
          put myFactor * myCodePoint into myAddend
          if myFactor is 2 then put 1 into myFactor else put 2 into myFactor
          add trunc((myAddend / n) + (myAddend mod n)) to mySum
     end repeat
     put mySum mod n into myRemainder
     put n – myRemainder into myCheckCodePoint
     put myCheckCodePoint mod n into myCheckCodePoint
     return charFromCodePoint(myCheckCodePoint)
end generateCheckChar

function validateCheckChar theInput
     put replaceText(theInput,”[W]”,empty) into theInput
     luhnInitialise char 1 to -1 of theInput
     put 1 into myFactor
     put 0 into mySum
     put length(lMap) into n
     repeat with i = length(theInput) down to 1
          put codePointFromChar(char i of theInput) into myCodePoint
          put myFactor * myCodePoint into myAddend
          if myFactor is 2 then put 1 into myFactor else put 2 into myFactor
          add trunc((myAddend / n) + (myAddend mod n)) to mySum
     end repeat
     put mySum mod n into myRemainder
     return myRemainder is 0
end validateCheckChar

/* end of the Luhn Extended N Algorithm */


New Simple Calculator

MyCalculator is different from the calculators you are used to, but it is more than simple. It doesn’t have any buttons to click on, it doesn’t require mouse movements and mouse clicks, avoiding confusion as well as RSI.

To use MyCalculator, just start the programme and watch a window appear. Always start typing on a new line. For example, enter


and you will get 3 as a result. Or enter


and you’ll get -2 as a result. The big advantage is that your equation looks (almost) as in the text books and you can always look up what you have entered, contrary to conventional calculators.


MyCalculator is freeware. It is currently available for Mac OS X 10.3 and later and comes in a version for PowerMac and another version for Mac Intel. You can download your free calculator at .

Buy a Valentine Gift and get TwistAWord for free!

NIJMEGEN (THE NETHERLANDS), 9 February 2010 — Do you want to send your beloved a token of your feelings? Then Economy-x-Talk has a special gift for you! Buy flowers, jewelry or another present now and receive the game TwistAWord for free.


TwistAWord is a great computer game for kids and adults who want to practise their language skills. Choose from 8 different languages, including English and Spanish, and put together phrases from the words presented to you. The sentences are well-known sayings and quotes from famous native speakers. Who is going to gather the more points, you or your Valentine?


TwistAWord contains hundreds of phrases in 8 languages, including Latin. It selects a phrase randomly, jumbles it and displays it. Use the mouse or pen device to drag the words into the correct order. If you make a mistake, the game gives you a hint and lets you try again. This way, you test your capabilities and learn new phrases at the same time.

TwistAWord is available for Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X and can be downloaded from its own website. Unregistered copies quit every 10 minutes, but you can always start the game again. Volume discounts and branding options are available.

The regular price for this game is EUR 14.95, but now you’ll get it for free with your Valentine gift!

CelerLEX Plus released!

Economy-x-Talk has just finished a new product in our range of CelerLEX products. CelerLEX Plus contains the complete texts of the law regaring the Spanish Oficina Judicial. Contrary to CelerLEX Lite, which includes only the paragraphs that changed after the law reform, CelerLEX Plus contains all legal texts. Additionally, CelerLEX Plus offers tools to search articles by words or article numbers.


CelerLEX Lite and CelerLEX Plus can be found on the dedicated website at You need a license to use the software, which you receive automatically by e-mail, immediately after paying.