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August 2007 Entries
FYI: Join me on geekSpeak Wednesday!

I stole, errrr, borrowed this from Glen Gordon's blog... :-)

"Join geekSpeak on Wednesday, August 29 at noon PT (3 PM ET) for a revisit from one of our favorite geekSpeak guests - Jim Duffy. Jim's an MVP for Visual Basic so he'll be chock full of information this time on the use of Generics in Visual Basic, and how a programming language with such humble roots handles this elegant construct. Jim's always a riot to talk to, so make sure you bring your best questions - serious and not-so-serious."

Posted On Monday, August 27, 2007 8:04 PM | Comments (0)
MSDN Road Show Events in North & South Carolina!

Are you interested in learning more about the next generation of web-oriented technologies? If so, please join us for a half-day seminar on the new and improved suite of tools and technologies from Microsoft that will better empower you to design and develop Rich Internet Applications (RIAs).  This road show will highlight how Microsoft is putting the final touches on a new suite of services and technologies that will help you build visually stunning, yet amazingly lightweight applications designed for the web.  You’ll also see how web technologies like AJAX, Virtual Earth, and Web Services can all be easily leveraged by all developers, from hobbyist to Enterprise. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn how you can put Microsoft technology to work for you!

Agenda

8:30 AM – 8:45 AM

Arrival and Registration

8:45 AM – 9:00 AM

Announcements and Introduction

9:00AM – 10:30 AM

The Designer/Developer Experience with Silverlight

With the introduction of Silverlight and Expression Studio, Microsoft offers a whole new way for Designers and Developers to collaborate on a single project.  In this session we will explore this new collaborative environment as well as the capabilities of Silverlight version. 

Microsoft® Silverlight™ is a cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering the next generation of .NET based media experiences and rich interactive applications for the Web.  Silverlight 1.0 supports fast, cost-effective delivery of high-quality video to all major browsers running on the Mac OS or Windows. Silverlight 1.1 offers a flexible programming model that supports AJAX, VB, C#, Python, and Ruby, and integrates with existing Web applications.

10:30 AM – 10:45 AM

Break

10:45 AM – 11:45 AM

Next Generation Web Technologies

Silverlight is not the only technology making news at Microsoft these days. In our second session, we’ll take a look at the next generation of services and technologies that will help you build visually stunning and amazingly lightweight applications designed for the web. Technologies like AJAX, Virtual Earth, and Web Services can all be easily leveraged by everyone from hobbyists to Enterprise developers. This session will give you a taste of several technologies that can quickly and substantially enhance your web applications.

11:45 AM – 12:00PM

Evaluations

12:00PM

Giveaways and Feedback

REGISTER!

Location

Date & Time

Registration

Microsoft Corporation – Raleigh (Durham), NC
4825 Creekstone Drive, Suite 190, Durham, North Carolina

August 29, 2007

8:30 AM–12:00 PM

Register

Event ID: 1032350393

Benefit Focus – Charleston, SC
100 Benefitfocus, Charleston, South Carolina

September 10, 2007

8:30 AM–12:00 PM

Register

Event ID: 1032350394

Microsoft Corporation – Charlotte, NC
8055 Microsoft Way, Charlotte, North Carolina

September 11, 2007

8:30 AM–12:00 PM

Register

Event ID: 1032350396

Speaker Bios:

Brian Hitney is a Developer Evangelist with Microsoft Corporation, focusing on .NET technologies.  He currently covers North and South Carolina, delivering presentations and working with local community groups and customers on emerging technologies.  Prior to his Developer Evangelist role, Brian worked as a software engineer on a Windows Vista team in Redmond, and before he joined Microsoft he helped build large scale e-commerce applications for various companies across the United States.   Brian is based out of Greensboro, NC.

Chad Brooks is an Architect Evangelist with Microsoft Corporation.  He works with Enterprise customers across the entire Southeast to define Systems Architecture around Microsoft products and how those products can fit into today's heterogeneous environments.  Chad joined Microsoft in 2000 in the Healthcare and Life Sciences Services Group, where he was responsible for architecting .Net based solutions for some of Microsoft's largest pharmaceutical and hospital customers.  Prior to Microsoft, Chad worked as a Technical Architect for HealthAxis, providing benefits administration, claims administration, and imaging solutions for healthcare insurance companies.  Chad is based in Atlanta, GA.

Posted On Wednesday, August 22, 2007 10:55 PM | Comments (0)
Developing Rich Experiences with Microsoft® .NET Framework 3.0 and Visual Studio® 2005

Here's an offer to good to miss. Have you been thinking about diving in to the .NET 3.0 technologies? Microsoft if offering a collection of three free E-Learning classes on .NET 3.0. Topics covered include

  • Windows Presentation Foundation
  • Windows Workflow Foundation
  • Windows Communication Foundation

Check it out here...

Have a day. :-|

Posted On Wednesday, August 22, 2007 2:34 PM | Comments (1)
Notes From Today's Computers 2K7 Radio Show! (August 19th, 2007)

Ok, so the title is a little off since I'm writing this on Monday, August 20th. I was off doing the vacation thing last weekend so the show had to go on without me...

"Good morning everybody, you're tuned to Computers 2K7 on sports radio 850 The Buzz" and so began yesterdays show as we do every Sunday morning from 8am - 10am here in Raleigh, NC. You can download the show from the show's website.

One of the stories I mentioned involved the finding of "objectionable pictures" on a customer's machine that was brought into a big box repair center. While the who, what and where details are not all that important, the underlying message is clear, when you, family members, friends, etc. bring your computer in for maintenance or repair, be aware that the technicians will probably take a look around the machine to see what they can find whether they need to or not. Personal information stored in Quicken/Quickbooks files, emails, images, and so on are all just sitting there waiting to be discovered. I advise to family and friends to make sure that before they bring a machine anywhere that they assign passwords to ALL user accounts, especially the Admin account. If the technician truly needs to log on to the machine they'll ask for the password. If they're just upgrading the memory or something like that, they may not need to log in to Windows and if they ask for a user account password ask why they need it.  Another idea I suggest is copying all sensitive files like financial files, emails, etc. on to an external harddrive away from prying eyes and delete those files from the computer before bringing it in.

While I'm sure a fairly savvy technician can work around roadblocks like these, short of encrypting your files it might pose just enough of a roadblock to keep some of the less talented ones from scanning your files.

Here are a few links to some of the stories I mentioned on today's show...

Windows XP: The OS That Won't Die

It seems that Microsoft is releasing a new build of Windows XP Pro because the supply of product activation keys is getting low. Don't look for any new features or fixes in this release since it was created solely to address the activation key supply problem.  Read more here...

Happy 25th Birthday to the CD!

It was back on August 17th, 1982 that the first CD rolled off the assembly line. What was the music contained on the CD? Why is a CD the size that it is? Check out this article for all the details...

"Bring out your Dead... But I'm Not Dead Yet"

I'm sure some of you recognize that line from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. It relates quite nicely to this story I mentioned regarding IBM revamping their mainframe OS. For those of you who thought the mainframe was dead, you're quite wrong.

Feel free to check out the show yourself and download it from here.

Have a day.  :-|

Posted On Monday, August 20, 2007 9:40 AM | Comments (1)
The #1 Programmer Excuse for Legitimately Slacking Off

I found this link on digg.com and just had to make sure other developers see it. Here's a link to the The #1 Programmer Excuse for Legitimately Slacking Off!  Enjoy and use this excuse wisely... no need to over use it and ruin it for the rest of us!!

Have a day. :-|

Posted On Wednesday, August 15, 2007 11:39 AM | Comments (1)
Hey, I'm on the Microsoft VB Developer Center!

Wow... I feel famous all of a sudden. :-)  Microsoft VS Core Community Program Manager, Beth Massi let me know that there were changes in store for the VB Developer Center page by including recognition for those MVP's who have contributed community content.  I just took a look and BAM! there I am in the upper right hand corner of the page...  now I just need to get that picture updated! :-)

Submit an article to Beth and maybe you too can get your mug on the MSDN VB Developer Center page too!!

Thanks Beth!

Have a day. :-|

Posted On Tuesday, August 7, 2007 3:50 PM | Comments (0)
VOIP Advice

I'm looking at moving over from a traditional phone line to a VOIP line. I've done some research, looked at different vendors, read some customer reviews, and now I'm more confused than ever. :-)

What are you're suggestions? Got any VOIP horror stories I should know about? You like your VOIP vendor? Talk to me people.

Have a day!

Posted On Monday, August 6, 2007 4:21 PM | Comments (0)
Notes From Today's Computers 2K7 Radio Show! (August 5th, 2007)

"Good morning everybody, you're tuned to Computers 2K7 on sports radio 850 The Buzz" and so began this mornings show as we do every Sunday morning from 8am - 10am here in Raleigh, NC. You can download the show from the show's website.

Here are a few links to some of the stories I mentioned on today's show...

Laser Printers Bad For Your Health?

This story reveals some of the potential health dangers associated with working in an environment containing laser printers. It contains a list of a number of printers categorized by how much they emit. It's no surprise that HP dismisses the idea that laser printers pose a health risk... this will be an interesting story to watch.

PortableApps

A caller let us know about the PortableApps website offering software that allows you to have a complete computing environment on a USB drive. I haven't checked it out yet but it looks interesting.

Making Phone Calls on the Net

Here's a story that covers the different options available for making and receiving free phone calls on the web. It goes into the pros and cons of a number of services including Skype, iCall, and Jajah.

WiFi At 30,000 Feet

This story covers the announcement that American Airlines is going to be rolling out their WiFi service in 2008.  It will provide Internet, VPN, and email access in all seating classes...for a fee of course. Expect to pay $10 per day for unlimited service.  I'm all over that...

Elton John Hates The Internet

Not much more I can say about this story other than EJ thinks the Internet is hurting people's productivity and he wants to see the Net shutdown.  I find it rather ironic that he recently made his entire music catalog available for purchase online. Sounds like he hates and loves the Internet at the same time... :-)

AVG Anti-Virus

We had a couple callers discuss their issues with a number of different anti-virus programs including Norton and Computer Associates. Regular listeners know we recommended listeners head over to the AVG site and download free version of AVG Anti-virus.

 

Have a day. :-|

Posted On Monday, August 6, 2007 8:44 AM | Comments (0)