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News Brandy Favilla is currently the Community Engagement Manager at New Horizons of Minnesota ( In this position, she helps people define and build their careers through educational events. Brandy focuses on networking with members of the Information Technology community to form partnerships in education. She strives to maintain New Horizons’ reputation as a high-quality learning center throughout the Twin Cities and beyond. Some of her accomplishments include chairing the committee for both the TechFuse and MindSurf Conferences hosted by New Horizons, co-chairing Twin Cities Code Camp and Twin Cities SharePoint Camp, Co-host of the Twin Cities Developers Guild, VP of PR for TechMasters (, Communications Chair of PACT (, Programs chair for IAMCP, President of the Business Intelligence User Group ( and actively participating in the SharePoint User Group ( *the thoughts and opinions in this blog are my own and do not reflect the opinions of New Horizons of Minnesota
Twin Cities IT and Developer Events Postings by Brandy Favilla

Both Minneapolis and Saint Louis will be hosting a Build Your Skills event. This full day event will introduces developers to a range  of the best practices that developers can use to create better applications in a shorter amount of time.  Presented by independent developers with a proven track record of having “been there, done that”, each session will provide insight into what it takes to write applications that run faster, are easier to maintain, and are of the highest possible quality.  During the day, you will be introduced to important information and concepts in these areas:

The Fine Art of Profiling (Go Faster) presented by Scott Colestock

There are a set of tools that should be "closer to the top" of your toolbox - in particular, a good profiler.  We'll talk about the tools that you already have at your disposal, and a few others that deserve a close look.  We'll talk about how to get the most out of your time invested, and where profiling should fit in your development lifecycle.

Building Loosely Coupled Applications presented by Shannon Braun

As enterprise software development has evolved we have identified patterns and practices that help us write more extensible and maintainable applications. Patterns with the names of Dependency Injection, Inversion of Control and Composite View have emerged to simplify the reuse of existing components and aide us in wiring together disparate components. Frameworks have been built to support these patterns.  This presentation will explain the patterns, cover the frameworks and talk about the practices required to be successful in building loosely coupled applications.

Exceptional Development: Dealing With Exceptions in .NET presented by Jason Bock

NET provides a rich mechanism for creating and handling errors in software. Yet it can be (and has been) abused and manipulated, sometimes in very subtle ways, in the name of "reliable code." In this session we'll cover exceptions: how they are created, when should they be handled, and some best practices to follow.

Introduction to Unit Testing presented by Kirstin Juhl

This session will introduce attendees to the art and practice of Unit Testing. We will cover the basic fundamentals of what units are and why and how they should be used.  The presentation will cover common tools used in unit testing and contain a brief discussion of Unit Testing within the Test-Driven-Development context. We explore the tools and write some basic unit tests, and watch them run, fail, and pass. A question and answer session will conclude this presentation.

Advanced Unit Testing with Raymond Lewallen

In the Advanced Unit Testing session, we will look at Inversion of Control - Dependency Injection, services, repositories, mocking, behavior driven development, MSpec, aggregates, distributors and the tools behind these such as Castle.Windsor, RhinoMocks, Machine.Specifications, NHibernate, Castle Transacations Manager, NServiceBus and a few more if we have time.  And of course, we all revolves around writing unit tests and letting those tests drive the outcome of our code.

Space is limited for both events, so please register early.  Logistic details for each event are provided below:

Saint Louis Event – Register Here

Date:  3/24/09

Time : 9:00am-4:30pm

Location:  Microsoft Office – Saint Louis
                 3 City Place Drive              
                 Suite 1100
                 St. Louis Missouri 63141


Minneapolis Event – Register Here

Date:  3/31/09

Time : 9:00am-4:30pm

Location:  Microsoft Office – Bloomington, MN
                 8300 Norman Center Drive              
                 Suite 950

Posted on Wednesday, February 25, 2009 8:09 AM Twin Cities IT and Developer Events | Back to top

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