Add Merge Fields to a Word Document before adding a DataSource

Adding merge fields to a Word document without adding a datasource to it – and anyone working with multiple datasources, or programmatic mailmerge setup wants to do this sometime – is not at all obvious when the mail merge button is greyed out..

You can do it, unobviously via Insert->QuickParts->Field:

Choose MergeField from the list on the left, and then you can type in your merge field name.

Your CPU vs your code. Two short lessons in software performance

There’s a great Q and Answer at dijkstra-path-finding-in-c-is-15x-slower-than-c-version which starts with C++ code at 2ms vs C# at 38ms; and finishes with C# at 2.8ms.

On similar lines, the solution to this riddle — why-does-net-core-2-0-perform-worse-than-net-framework-4-6-1 — has nothing to do with the framework; it results from the slower performance of 64bit code compared to 32bit.

Which just goes to confirm what you might have suspected;

VMs aren’t that slow; and
For best performance, you have to understand your VM, and your language, and your O/S, and ultimately your CPU.

Rule #1 of Coffee Club : Keep It Fresh

“Think of when you cut into a banana, how quickly that slice of banana oxidizes. Now think of how big that slice of banana is compared to these tiiinnnyyy granules of espresso.”

“They oxidise quickly! Get rid of them, grind them fresh!”

A well-packed 23 minutes from US Barista Champion Heather Perry on making good espresso: