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Mark Pearl October 2011 Entries
Knowing your tools and Keyboard shortcuts in your IDE
I recently have had the humbling experience of pair programming with several developers where I was just astounded at the speed at which they were able to get code generated. One thing I noticed is that most of their coding was done with the keyboard with very little use of the mouse – everything was shortcut based. When it was my turn to take over the wheel I found myself extremely slow compared to them, partly because I was not familiar with their keyboard and layout, but the majority of the slowness ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 26, 2011 6:03 PM

TechEd Africa 2011 – MVVM Programming - Slides & Code Snippets


Here are the slides and code samples for MVVM Programming Introduction given at TechEd Africa 2011

Posted On Saturday, October 22, 2011 4:10 PM

TechEd Africa 2011 - Async Talk - Slides & Code Snippets
For those that attended my session on the complexities of asynchronous programming in WPF & Silverlight, find below the latest slide deck and code samples for download ......

Posted On Saturday, October 22, 2011 4:09 PM

TechEd 2011 - Why Clifford got it wrong…
In the closing keynote at TechEd Africa 2011, Clifford de Wit (Microsoft South Africa) made improvements on his previous years attempt to geekily give away a prize, but unfortunately still got it wrong… here’s why. At Teched 2010 Clifford gave away an amazing prize of a wheel barrow full of tech goodies – if my memory serves me right, it included a laptop, xbox, kinect as well as a whole bunch of other fun stuff – a geeks delight. Unfortunately he was given some flack on how he decided to pick the ......

Posted On Thursday, October 20, 2011 8:44 PM

7 tips for people new to presenting at technical conferences
Today TechEd Africa 2011 ended. It was a great conference and the first time I have ever had the opportunity to present an hour long topic – I had the joy of presenting two sessions at this conference, one session based on a topic which I should have been able to cover easily and one with a topic that I battled with and felt totally out of my depth. In retrospect, there are a few bits of advice that I would like to give other people that are thinking of presenting at a conference like this for the ......

Posted On Thursday, October 20, 2011 6:04 PM

Two useful extensions for Presenters using VS2010
With TechEd Africa starting in two days time I thought I would briefly blog about two useful extensions I use for VS2010 when presenting. They are Presentation Zoom by Chris Granger ZoomEditorMargin by Benjamin Gopp The Presentation Zoom extension creates a global zoom level so that if you zoom a single window, all editor instances will be updated to that zoom level. Before I had this extension I had a few circumstances where I was not aware of the resolution restrictions of the projector until 5 ......

Posted On Saturday, October 15, 2011 8:35 AM

Await a void (Async CTP)
I am really enjoying getting more and more into the new async ctp. Something that stumped me up to now, was how do I run a void method asynchronously. For instance, suppose I have the following workflow that I want to run. private void DoWorkFlowSync() { txtStatus.Text = "Step 1"; Step1Workflow(); txtStatus.Text = "Step 2"; Step2Workflow(); txtStatus.Text = "Step 3"; Step3Workflow(); txtStatus.Text = "Done"; } private void Step1Workflow() { Thread.Sleep(1000); } private void Step2Workflow() { Thread.Sleep(1000); ......

Posted On Friday, October 14, 2011 6:55 AM

Async using the old Async Begin / End Pattern
In the last few weeks I have had the pleasure of familiarising myself with various async patterns in C#. After going through the different approaches one gets a feel for how far we have come since the .Net 1 days. One particular pattern that I was not familiar with implementing but which has been available since the beginning of .Net is what I call the Async Begin / End Pattern. Since my interest is really making calls asynchronously so that I don’t block the UI thread - from what I can tell this ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:52 PM

Accessing the Dispatcher Thread from your ViewModel
A little snippet that might help anyone using the MVVM pattern. If we want to marshal something through to the Dispatcher Thread from a view model we can do the following within the ViewModel class… private void SendingToTheDispatcherThread() { Dispatcher dispatcher = Application.Current.Dispatc... if (!dispatcher.CheckAccess()) { dispatcher.BeginInvoke((Act... => { // put code for the dispatched here })); } else { // put code for the dispatched here } } ......

Posted On Wednesday, October 12, 2011 8:57 AM

Simplifying Asynchronous Programming in C#
I have dabbled in async programming in the past but never put any real effort into understanding how things worked. With the new async features in .Net 5 I thought I would give it a look. Here is a quick example of one of the features you can expect in the new framework and how it can make our life easier. The best way to illustrate this is to make a simple WPF application as follows… In the past If we had the following small WPF application with just one window / form… The XAML code for the window ......

Posted On Tuesday, October 11, 2011 7:30 AM

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