Tag | Software Posts

FredNUG is pleased to announce that we have another great speaker lined up for November. On November 18th, we’ll start with pizza and social networking at 6:30 PM. Then, starting at 7 PM, John Baird will present “Building Silverlight LOB Apps.” With so many software development teams trying to make the switch from Winforms to WPF/Silverlight, I’m sure this talk will be very useful and informative. The scheduled agenda is: 6:30 PM - 7:00 PM - Pizza/Social Networking/Announcements 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM ...
I've been on a contract in this facility for over 4 years now. That's actually a good thing considering my age. I wouldn't be disappointed if I could stay here until I went out of scope. But that can't stop me from complaining... that's just the nature of the beast. In my first letter back home from basic training my Mother worried that I was ok. My Father told her "He's complaining, he's fine!" ... so I guess 39 years later things haven't changed :) Logic tells me that if a company is paying a LOT ...
It seems that the financial software business at Microsoft is slowly being pushed off the cart. First they discontinue Microsoft Money and now, according to a PC Pro article, Microsoft Office Accounting is getting the boot as well. I found this quote on the Microsoft Office Accounting page: “Microsoft Office Accounting will no longer be distributed after November 16, 2009.” I’ll admit its been a while since we did any custom development work using the Microsoft Office Accounting developer tools but ...
The Shape conference is a new web technologies oriented conference organized by Microsoft Switzerland. It is held in Zurich Oerlikon, and has two tracks, one design-oriented and one development-oriented. Read the rest of this entry » ...
Just an update on some free developer events coming up in November in St. Louis (and ones with which I am directly involved). Please share these dates with others for whom they might be valuable. Also, a few of them have limited capacity so please register soon. If you have any questions on any of the below events, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me and I will be glad to answer any questions you might have. .NET Chalk Talk: Visual Studio.NET Tips, Tricks, and Toys Location: Washington Universities ...
From this blog post: http://tinyurl.com/ykmgpgw "In order to facilitate interoperability and enable customers and vendors to access the data in .pst files on a variety of platforms, we will be releasing documentation for the .pst file format. This will allow developers to read, create, and interoperate with the data in .pst files in server and client scenarios using the programming language and platform of their choice. The technical documentation will detail how the data is stored, along with guidance ...
I have meant to have this posted earlier in the week and then it became an email to all volunteers and finally morphed back into a blog posting. So here goes… Last weekend (Oct 16th-18th, 2009), St. Louis held it’s first annual Coders-4-Charities event at Washington Universities CAIT center in Clayton, MO. The event had been in the planning stages for many months and we had done a significant amount of work in lining up 9 charitable, non-profit organizations which each had IT needs which we felt ...
With several successful Microsoft BizSpark Incubation Weeks (Win7 Boston, Win7 Reston, CRM Reston, CRM Boston, Win 7 Irvine, Mobility Mountain View,), we are pleased to announce Microsoft BizSpark Incubation Week for Windows Azure at Atlanta, GA during week of 9th Nov’09. The current economic downturn is putting many entrepreneurs under increasing pressure, making it critical to find new resources and ways to reduce costs and inefficiencies. Microsoft BizSpark Incubation Week for Windows Azure is ...
Someone that I respect in software development recommended this book to me. Pragramatic Thinking & Learning by Andy Hunt. I got it in the mail last evening and have already read half of it. He talks about the Dreyfus Model Stages. These stages apply to any profession and were first implemented in the early 1980s with nurses. He says skills in a profession are distributed in 5 levels from lowest to highest: Novice, Advanced Beginner, Competent, Proficient, and Expert. Most people don't get past ...
We have scheduled for a .NET Usergroup meeting next week on the 30th October 2009. I arranged with our training department and they have agreed to ensure that we have the room, support in resources including a laptop, projector and anything else which may be necessary. Happy days! They have also guaranteed that we can have the room each month on the last Friday. I had been in communication with Craig Murphy, who took up my tweet and made it his task to see how we can get helped in making this possible ...
I've been looking at this skinning creator program for $129.95 from Artisteer for a while now and sure enough DotNetNuke skinning rookies will be able to create their own skins and apply them on their own sites. It appears that the DotNetNuke community is starting to endorse this product as well. The product has been out for a while now and its advertised as a way to change your theme using Joomia, Drupal and WordPress. Now, they have added support for DotNetNuke skins and DotNetNuke users have started ...
This is an Open Letter to the Editor of CIO in response to an article posted on Computer World discussing the five problems that supposedly keep legacy applications out of the Cloud. Dear Editor, In light of your recent article about the challenges that legacy application face in migrating to the cloud, below please find a response which provides answers to 4 of the most problematic issues. We believe your readers would greatly benefit from the information, and we regret that we were not directly ...
Today’s article is going to be controversial. As well, I wasn’t able to find sources to substantiate the content of the article, so it is largely supposition based upon my personal experience. What’s worse is that it’ll likely be pretty short and not my typical diatribe of pros and poetry. I’m going to talk about getting paid less than what you’re worth and why that is actually a good thing. During the past twenty years I have worked for several software companies with countless technical types. ...
We got a couple upcoming meetings for software developers in the Baton Rouge area that are going to be a great amount of fun and learning (what, together? Nahhh…) BRDNUG Meeting: Tomorrow, Oct 21 2009 Brian Sullivan from the Shreveport area will be coming down to speak on NHibernate with Fluent NHibernate. Should be a great meeting, I’m very sadly missing it. Agenda 5:45 pm - 6:15 pm: General Introduction/Food and Drinks 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm: Brian will speak on NHibernate with Fluent NHibernate 7:20 ...
One of the most common question people ask me in the teams I’m in is the following: Where should I put Try – Catch blocks? The second most popular is equally challenging: What is the best method to re-throw an exception? This post will try to answer both questions. Before I start with this topic, I must warn you that the following is not the official “best practices” but rather my own personal opinion on the subject, based on my past experience. I think that Try – Catch blocks are a great asset of ...
Recently I attended the Business Analysis Conference in London that I spoke about in my previous post. My reason for being there was I accepted an invite to be a speaker on a panel discussing “The Role Of The BA: What Is Expected And What Is Delivered” Part of the Business Analysts role is to capture, distil and communicate business requirement to Technical staff so it was of great relevance that I played my part as the technical representative on the panel. If technical staff are to understand business ...
Well not exactly free but definitely extremely welcome and a great benefit. The introductory offer includes a huge 750 hours of compute time – which rather nicely is how much you need to run a node 24x7 for the whole month. Another great reason to sign up for an MSDN subscription or to join BizSpark if you are a Software Startup. NB: SQL Services is SQL Azure. I guess the naming change slipped through the review process for the site ...
Navot Peled, CEO of Gizmox, challenged the “Green IT trend” with the announcement this week that its product, Visual WebGui, has been successfully providing energy and environmental benefits to enterprises, with its solutions that dually cut costs for hardware and software. “Over the past 2 years, enterprises have been successfully using our product – Visual WebGui, and reaping the environmental and energy benefits while saving money,” said Peled. “To move the industry forward, it’s not the individual ...
Executable specifications are the holy grail of software development. The idea is to specify the behaviour of a system in some structured way that can be automatically verified. It is something that I am interested in so I have been keeping an eye on the options that are available for .NET...

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Well, today I had the honor of attending the first annual SDEC09 Conference hosted by Protegra. This event was similar to the Winnipeg Code Camp, where they had three trains of presentations going on all day. Well, it was a wonderful conference, well worth the $100 Early bird price, as I had a chance to sit in on some amazing presentations. Let's take a look at some of the topics presented that I attended. Introduction to Agile Developement - Presented By Steve Regalsky Well, I've heard of Agile ...
What is Windows CE? Microsoft says that Windows CE is “Componentized, real-time operating system for a wide range of small footprint devices” on their WEB site. That is a very precise description, but what does it really mean? Windows CE is designed for embedded systems. An embedded system is typically a device that doesn’t necessarily look like a computer, but provides some special functionality. Examples of embedded computers are GPS systems, voting machines, Automated Teller Machines, Point Of ...
I often get asked what IoC Container I prefer. Short answer: StructureMap. I love the fluent syntax for configuration. Overall, it’s easy to use, has many advanced features, and is very lightweight. I view the learning curve with StructureMap as relatively small. It is one of the longest-lived IoC containers (if not *the* longest) and has a huge adoption rate which means it’s quite mature and not difficult to find code examples online. For example, there is the StructureMap mailing list. Additionally, ...
Tonight in User Group land: The Twin Cities Developers Guild meets on the second Tuesday of each month, and tonight's meeting features Donn Felker of Agilevent. http://www.TwinCitiesDevelo... Topic: Testing with Mocks: Test this, test that, no problem. But what about when we need to start building full object graphs into our test in order to test an interaction or state? Yeah, Houston, we have a problem. With mocks we can streamline development by mocking out dependencies. Mocks will allow ...
Yesterday working in a demo about WCF-REST Starter Kit (http://www.asp.net/downloa... i had a little issue to make a query to a XML Structure that includes a xml namespace (aka xmlns), the trick is very simple to get the value from each element in the structure, you should pass the XName in Elements method including the XNamespace This is my XML structure <ItemInfoList xmlns:i="http://www.w3.org/... - <ItemInfo> <EditLink>http://loca... ...
I won’t complain, because it is free… But (expletive here)… My Particular Experience was with IIS on Windows Server 2008, but the experience should be about the same for XP, Vista, Server 2003, and 2008. The Apache configuration appears to be well documented in the Win32Install directions https://wiki.mozilla.org/Bu... If you’ve installed any open-source software before some of the steps for bugzilla may already be done so I’ll outline the steps and you can skip any ...
How to check what kind of processor you have (CPU) and what operating system can I run on it? An X64 has a 64 bit microprocessor, whereas an X86, derived from the old 8086 PC, has a 32 bit microprocessor. A 32 bit machine and/or OS (operating system) is limited to about 3.55GB of memory, and an X64 is limited to about 17,179,869,184 gigabytes, 17,179,869 terabytes, or about 16 exabytes of RAM. Also a 32-bit CPU cannot run an 64-bit OS. So, how to check your CPU: Since you cannot run WIndows7-64x ...
Saturday November 7th, 2009, I will be presenting at Tampa Code Camp 2009. This Code Camp is second behind infamous South Florida Code Camp in number of attendees…close to 500 planning to attend. So be sure to register to get your spot and in-person must be present to win raffle prize opportunity: http://www.tampacodecamp.com/ Hope to see you there. Be sure to ask to see my Windows Phone. Here are the abstracts on the sessions I will be presenting: Windows Phone Widgets Intro on how to build Windows ...
June 12th 2010 - I headed over to Three's London offices to take a peak at the next generation MiFi unit on Wednesday, and here's the scoop on the next generation MiFi unit, the E585, http://geekswithblogs.net/t... I have been using a 3G Mobile Broadband dongle from Three [http://www.three.co.uk/Mob... ] for just over a year and have been very happy with the service. It helps that I am on a half price ...
I haven't had much to post about for a while, but yesterday I decieded I was going to take Keramic Koala, the next release of Ubuntu Linux for a spin. I have an old machine sitting around, and I wanted to turn it into a subversion server. So I downloaded the CD image, and true to my past experience with Ubuntu, it downloaded blazing fast, being about 700 MB CD image in about 15 minutes. Burnt it, and popped it into my beastly machine. The machine I'm setting it up on, has 500GB Hard drive, Pentium ...
I've largely finished my presentation for the October Rules Fest 2009 conference in Dallas at the end of the month. I'm speaking on complex event processing (CEP). My plan is to provide a broad survey of CEP technologies, chiefly concentrating on the similarities and differences between event stream and rules processing. There has been a lot of interest and activity around event processing in the rules community in recent years, and not a little controversy about the best approaches and, indeed, ...
I delivered a session on Windows Azure Storage and SQL Azure Database at the UK Azure user group on the 6th of October. A big thanks to everyone who attended – and for putting up with my last minute improvisation when we realised that 2/3rd of the audience were actually brand new to Windows Azure (and presumably therefore brand new to the user group) Links: www.azure.com Main site and where you register to get tokens. Remember you need separate tokens for Windows Azure and SQL Azure. Or… a more streamlined ...
As a freelancer who is constantly selling his skills on the free market, I always have to be up to date and keep myself informed about the latest technologies - in a more cursory way to know what options are available in a certain situation, or more in-depth if I am actually working with a specific technology. Although you can go overboard with trying to stay on top of the IT industries' evolution (I talked about that in a previous post), I simply consider continuous learning to be a natural part ...
I always look for software that has a footprint smaller than what is offered from the standard software for folks on the market. For instance, I use Foxit rather than the Adobe Reader as the software download for this is 1mb rather than 80mb and hardly has anything running on your machine while Adobe Reader (IMHO) is spyware/junkware. I am a complete audio junkie or audiophile (as some call it) and I have never been 100% happy with the standard Windows Media Player. It is a fine piece of software ...
Designing Software for Scientists Creating a software design for scientists can be tricky business. Unlike the businessman, who is better off looking at the pretty database report or marveling over the catchy name of the latest Forms over Data application, the scientist can actually contribute to the implementation – provided you use the right architecture. In year’s past (I’m referring to 20+ years ago), the typical Physicist / Chemist / etc. was nearly on par with the typical software engineer ...
Most people can agree that testing your software is a good thing. Most developers will agree that unit testing is a great thing to have. But how about testing your web site? Fair enough you can run unit tests on your code behind, but unit testing a GUI can be problematic. If you struggled with this problem, don't worry - you're not the first! I've recently become aware of Selenium. Selenium is a very powerfull tool for testing web applications. It gives you a lot of nice features to help you test ...
Did you ever wonder why your system at random times hangs? Sometimes it comes back after a few seconds (could simply be paging) but at least once a day I wish I would be able to know why the system is responding so slowly. Before going into kernel land I must confess that I have never written a device driver so my knowledge to kernel mode debugging is quite limited but on the other hand if you did not do this either you will have a much easier time to follow me. Some hangs seem to be Heisenbugs which ...
I just provided some help to a friend setting up a small virtualisation network on single machine, for demonstrating a new software technology at user groups and conferences. A few tweets and e-mails went back and forth as we discussed virtual networking options, static IP configurations and using NEWSISID to enable imaging VMs from a initial 'gold' image. Getting the machines to talk to each other on an isolated virtual network was proving to be way more difficult than it should have been. At this ...
Code reviews are one of the best things you can do to improve code quality within an organisation, but the process isn't a silver bullet, and it isn't guaranteed to succeed. These are my observations on what works and what doesn't work when it comes to implementing code reviews into a software development environment. I've worked at 3 companies now where code reviews have been introduced. At the first two it was a failure, but for different reasons each time. Only the third company has fully integrated ...
Microsoft Security Essentials has been released. Check out the formal press release from Microsoft here - http://www.microsoft.com/pr... Check out the post on Network World - http://www.networkworld.com... You can download software from the Microsoft Security Essentials website at http://www.microsoft.com/se... Now you can get antivirus for your new copy of Windows 7 for ...
There's a recent blog post that was sent to me in response to my insistence on Test-Driven Development: "The Duct Tape Programmer" by Joel Spolsky. The gist of the post is: Good programmers ship software. I agree. And my response is: Great programmers ship quality software. When I wrote commercial software, there were no unit tests. All testing in-house was done by some internal QA testers, and if the software passed smoke tests it was sent through a full test run. This could take a week or more. ...
Last Saturday I attended BathCamp near Bath and Tues through Thursday I attended Software Architect 2009 in London. I loved both conferences yet they are so very different. Hence (in a blokey way) I thought it would be interesting to summarise and compare. I was an invited speaker for Software Architect (my sessions) and proposed and had a session accepted on the day at BathCamp. BathCamp Software Architect Comment Price £20 £1000ish Location A field behind a pub near Bath! Many folks camped overnight. ...
Many of my ISVs are ramping up in their adoption of Team System 2010. Many others are finishing or still deep in their rollouts of Team System 2008. Notions Solutions has been critical in helping many of them get up to speed on Team System. Thought I would make you all aware of a great tool recently released for Team System that adds to and complements some key features. The great thing about Notions is that they have deep knowledge of what it takes to stand up Team System and get it implemented ...
I was recently hunting down some good articles where key folks in the industry are talking about Software + Services. Here’s a few of the ones I found very helpful. Is the Cloud Reliable Enough for Business? Outages at a cloud-computing service could hurt your business. The question is whether your in-house systems can do better. Q&A: Clouds of Distribution, Erik Troan, CTO at rPath, a company that delivers enterprise applications across cloud-based environments, recently spoke with Dr. Dobb's ...
This weekend, October 3, 2009, I will be presenting at SW Florida Code Camp. Hope to see you there. Be sure to ask to see my phone, I have something really cool to show you. Here are the abstracts on the sessions I will be presenting: Windows Phone Widgets Intro on how to build Windows Mobile Phone Widgets. Level 100. In this presentation I will discuss the strategy, scenarios and applications of how an online presence, RIA application can be extended to a Windows Phone near you! I will explain how ...
Wow! Last month’s meeting was terrific! Claudio Lassala’s presentation rocked. Also, the format of the meeting worked so well we’re going to stick with it for the Wednesday, October 28th meeting. This month FredNUG has another great speaker lined up. We’ll start with pizza and social networking at 6:30 PM. Then, starting at 7 PM, Antonio Chagoury will present Mash-Up Your DotNetNuke Using RESTful APIs. This sounds like an informative presentation covering a variety of key technologies. The scheduled ...
Lately, there was a blog post by Joel Spolsky called "The Duct Tape Programmer", which is very opinionated and caused quite a lot of responses and discussions in the blogosphere. Basically, this post contrasted the duct tape worldview of developing software to the astronaut architect's, forcing programmers to decide between quick-and-dirty solutions on the one side and analysis paralysis on the other. The replies that I like most, are by (Uncle) Bob Martin, Ayende and Jeffrey Palermo. I think they ...
Watchdog timers have been coming up in discussions lately, so I thought it might be good to start a discussion about the use and misuse of watchdog timers in a preemptive multitasking operating system, like Windows CE. I am going to share my thoughts, but look forward to you, my reader, sharing your thoughts on the subject. I am going to focus this discussion on hardware watchdogs, totally ignoring the software watchdog that is included in Windows CE and discussed by Luca Calligaris in an article ...
You might have been following this series of posts on my preparation for Software Architect 2009. Well, this evening while sitting in a small hotel room in London (with no window and a dodgy tv) I completed both presentations and made them available for download on Slideshare. You can find them both here. P.S. I still need to add links to that page ...
If you are in the Baton Rouge area there is a new event for you to attend! Intended for aspiring and current software architects, the BRAG Lunch is a place for an informal gathering to talk about what works and doesn’t work in real life. Our first meeting is going to start off on the Service Locator pattern mediated by Lance Dunnehoo and we’ll see where we go from there! I hope to see you guys there, and you can find out the granular details at our EventBrite page. If you plan on attending, please ...
The following is Steve Ballmer’s recent letter to CEOs titled ‘The New Efficiency’. In all the talk about the economy, one term that comes up more and more frequently is something called "the new normal." I like this phrase because it speaks to the fact that economic reality has undergone a fundamental shift over the course of the past 12 months. So what is the nature of this shift? After years of economic expansion fueled by unrealistic rates of consumption and unsustainable levels of private debt, ...