Hello Paypal Here. Goodbye Square Up.

PayPal-HereI love my new Surface Pro 3. When I go to a conference, I want my Surface Pro 3 to be used as the Cash Registers. Alas, Square Up doesn’t support the Surface Pro 3. But guess what? Paypal Here, a direct competitor to Square Up does support the Surface Pro 3. My Paypal Here card reader is on its way.

I accepted, begrudgingly, the fact that you didn’t work with my Windows 7 laptop when I first got Square Up. But that was more than two years ago. There are 300 million windows devices out there. Why would you ignore that market share?

Thank you Squareup.com for being a good card reader. I enjoyed your server. I liked it. However, you haven’t kept up with the industry. The Surface Pro 3, as well as other similar 3rd party hybrid tablet/laptops, is turning iPads and Android tablets into paperweights. You’ll be fine without me. Hopefully you update your software soon before you lose more accounts than mine. Once I am up and working with PayPal Here, I doubt I will make the effort to come back.

So I tell you goodbye Square. And hello PayPal Here!

Get PayPal Here from the Windows Store.

Note: This isn’t an ad. I wasn’t paid to make this post. I am however, frustrated with Square Up for not providing an App for my Surface Pro 3.

Splitting sentences in C# using Stanford.NLP

So I need to break some sentences up. I have a pretty cool regex that does this, however, I want to try out Stanford.NLP for this. Let’s check it out.

  1. Create a Visual Studio C# project.
    I chose a New Console Project and named it SentenceSplitter.
  2. Right-click on the project and choose “Manage NuGet Packages.
  3. Add the Stanford.NLP.CoreNLP nuget package.
  4. Add the following code to Program.cs (This is a variation of the code provide here: http://sergey-tihon.github.io/Stanford.NLP.NET/StanfordCoreNLP.html
    using edu.stanford.nlp.ling;
    using edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline;
    using java.util;
    using System;
    using System.IO;
    using Console = System.Console;
    namespace SentenceSplitter
        class Program
            static void Main(string[] args)
                // Path to the folder with models extracted from `stanford-corenlp-3.4-models.jar`
                var jarRoot = @"stanford-corenlp-3.4-models\";
                const string text = "I went or a run. Then I went to work. I had a good lunch meeting with a friend name John Jr. The commute home was pretty good.";
                // Annotation pipeline configuration
                var props = new Properties();
                props.setProperty("annotators", "tokenize, ssplit, pos, lemma, ner, parse, dcoref");
                props.setProperty("sutime.binders", "0");
                // We should change current directory, so StanfordCoreNLP could find all the model files automatically 
                var curDir = Environment.CurrentDirectory;
                var pipeline = new StanfordCoreNLP(props);
                // Annotation
                var annotation = new Annotation(text);
                // these are all the sentences in this document
                // a CoreMap is essentially a Map that uses class objects as keys and has values with custom types
                var sentences = annotation.get(typeof(CoreAnnotations.SentencesAnnotation));
                if (sentences == null)
                foreach (Annotation sentence in sentences as ArrayList)

    Warning! If you try to run here, you will get the following exception: Unrecoverable error while loading a tagger model

    java.lang.RuntimeException was unhandled
      Message=edu.stanford.nlp.io.RuntimeIOException: Unrecoverable error while loading a tagger model
           at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.StanfordCoreNLP.4.create()
           at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.AnnotatorPool.get(String name)
           at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.StanfordCoreNLP.construct(Properties A_1, Boolean A_2)
           at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.StanfordCoreNLP..ctor(Properties props, Boolean enforceRequirements)
           at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.StanfordCoreNLP..ctor(Properties props)
           at SentenceSplitter.Program.Main(String[] args) in c:\Users\jbarneck\Documents\Projects\NLP\SentenceSplitter\SentenceSplitter\Program.cs:line 20
           at System.AppDomain._nExecuteAssembly(RuntimeAssembly assembly, String[] args)
           at System.AppDomain.ExecuteAssembly(String assemblyFile, Evidence assemblySecurity, String[] args)
           at Microsoft.VisualStudio.HostingProcess.HostProc.RunUsersAssembly()
           at System.Threading.ThreadHelper.ThreadStart_Context(Object state)
           at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.RunInternal(ExecutionContext executionContext, ContextCallback callback, Object state, Boolean preserveSyncCtx)
           at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.Run(ExecutionContext executionContext, ContextCallback callback, Object state, Boolean preserveSyncCtx)
           at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.Run(ExecutionContext executionContext, ContextCallback callback, Object state)
           at System.Threading.ThreadHelper.ThreadStart()
      InnerException: edu.stanford.nlp.io.RuntimeIOException
           Message=Unrecoverable error while loading a tagger model
                at edu.stanford.nlp.tagger.maxent.MaxentTagger.readModelAndInit(Properties config, String modelFileOrUrl, Boolean printLoading)
                at edu.stanford.nlp.tagger.maxent.MaxentTagger..ctor(String modelFile, Properties config, Boolean printLoading)
                at edu.stanford.nlp.tagger.maxent.MaxentTagger..ctor(String modelFile)
                at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.POSTaggerAnnotator.loadModel(String A_0, Boolean A_1)
                at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.POSTaggerAnnotator..ctor(String annotatorName, Properties props)
                at edu.stanford.nlp.pipeline.StanfordCoreNLP.4.create()
           InnerException: java.io.IOException
                Message=Unable to resolve "edu/stanford/nlp/models/pos-tagger/english-left3words/english-left3words-distsim.tagger" as either class path, filename or URL
                     at edu.stanford.nlp.io.IOUtils.getInputStreamFromURLOrClasspathOrFileSystem(String textFileOrUrl)
                     at edu.stanford.nlp.tagger.maxent.MaxentTagger.readModelAndInit(Properties config, String modelFileOrUrl, Boolean printLoading)
  5. Download the stanford-corenlp-full-3.4.x.zip file from here: http://nlp.stanford.edu/software/corenlp.shtml#Download
  6. Extract the stanford-corenlp-full-2014-6-16.x.zip.
    Note: Over time, as new versions come out, make sure the version you download matches the version of your NuGet package.
  7. Extract the stanford-corenlp-3.4-models.jar file to stanford-corenlp-3.4-models.
    I used 7zip to extract the jar file.
  8. Copy the stanford-corenlp-3.4-models folder to your Visual Studio project files.
    Note: This is one way to include the jar file in your project. Other ways might be a copy action or another good way would be to use an app.config appSetting. I chose this way because it makes all my files part of the project for this demo. I would probably use the app.config method in production.
  9. In Visual Studio, use ctrl + left click to  highlight the stanford-corenlp-3.4-models folder and all subfolders.
  10. Open Properties (Press F4), and change the namespace provider setting to false.
  11. In Visual Studio, use ctrl + left click to  highlight the files under the stanford-corenlp-3.4-models folder and all files in all subfolders.
  12. Open Properties (Press F4), and change the Build Action to Content and the Copy to Output Directory setting to Copy if newer.
  13. Run the code.


Note: At first I tried to just load the model file. That doesn’t work. I got an exception. I had to set the @jarpath as shown above. I needed to copy all the contents of the jar file.


Notice that I through it curve ball by ending a sentence with Jr. It still figured it out.

I went or a run. Then I went to work. I had a good lunch meeting with a friend name John Jr. The commute home was pretty good.

However, I just tried this paragraph and it did NOT detect the break after the first sentence.

Exit Room A. Turn right. Go down the hall to the first door. Enter Room B.

I am pretty sure this second failure is due to the similarity in string with a legitimate first name, middle initial, last name.

Jared A. Barneck
Room A. Turn

Now the question is, how do I train it to not make such mistakes?

Removing all xml or html tags using Notepad++

Let’s say you have an xml or an html document and you want to remove the tags.

<h2>Shopping List</h2>
	<li>orange juice</li>

This can be done rather quickly in a tool like notepad++ using the find and replace with regular expressions feature.

  1. Go to Find and Replace.
  2. Enter this regular expression: <[^>]+>
  3. Select regular expression.
  4. Make sure the cursor is at the start of the document.
  5. Click replace all.

That is it.

How to open a command prompt on a remote computer

There are three tools that can do this:

  • PSExec – Not redistributable but free for download. No source code.
  • RemCom – BSD Licensed but not really maintained and I haven’t been able to get it to work in Windows 7. Source code available. Uses its own command line.
  • PAExec – Free to distribute but no source code. Uses same command line as PSExec.

So they all use the same command line to connect to a remote computer. I think I am going to go with PAExec because it is newer, maintained, distributable, and works in Windows 7.

PAExec \\RemotePC cmd.exe

However, with that command line, it can be confusing to have a command prompt open on your machine without a way to know it is actually a command prompt for a remote computer so it is a good idea to add a prompt.

PAExec \\RemotePC cmd.exe /k prompt $C%computername%$F$S$p$G

I hope this helps.