Geeks With Blogs
Will Smith The Blog in Black February 2008 Entries
February 29th
There is an extra day this year. What are you doing with it? Take some time today to relish in the fact that you have one more opportunity to tell someone how much you appreciate them. Perhaps it is your coworker who never breaks the build. Perhaps it is your boss who calmly listens to your rants. Perhaps it is your spouse who patiently waits for you to finish your blog. Regardless, show your appreciation, not by saying "Thank you", but by saying "I appreciate you because..." Cheers, Will ......

Posted On Friday, February 29, 2008 9:14 AM

Uninstalling EF Beta 3
As much as I have enjoyed playing with the Entity Framework (Beta 3), I will be uninstalling shortly after this post. The fact of the matter is, my company is not prepared to go to production in a couple of months with something that hasn't seen a lot of action. The EF certainly seems stable enough, but, I can respect this decision. The good news is that we are still using VS 2008 & .Net 3.5. Also, my plan is to maintain a design that we can migrate to the EF without too much effort. Hopefully ......

Posted On Friday, February 29, 2008 8:15 AM

Linq Design
While playing with Linq and trying to get it to work with Oracle (Linq to Oracle *sigh*), I struggled with the fact that Linq appears to tightly couple business objects with data/persistence. I found myself pondering this fact and trying different approaches to separate the ObjectContext from EntityContext(s). In Linq, the ObjectContext is the object that you provide with a connection string and has the knowledge to send/receive data to/from your database. The EntityContext(s) are the classes that ......

Posted On Thursday, February 28, 2008 1:57 AM

Linq to Oracle *sigh*
Well, I have been playing with Linq, specifically with Oracle. First of all, the only way I could find to make this work is to use a third party software, OraDirect.Net by Core Lab. Their product is great. Perhaps that statement is biased by the fact that they are the only one's building a library to support Linq to Sql (as far as I know). There is certainly room for improvement. I've crashed VS a few times because I was trying to force OraDirect to do something it doesn't support. So, error handling ......

Posted On Thursday, February 28, 2008 1:15 AM

MSBuild Server Gotcha
I really like the fact that MSBuild is installed with the .Net Framework so you do not have to install a separate build tool. Unfortunately, if you are developing Web Application projects (WAP), you may discover something is missing. In my case, I am building a VS2008 project and the build server does not have Visual Studio installed. No problem, right? Wrong. It turns out that when you install VS, it deploys some additional targets to the MSBuildExtensionsPath. Without these targets, when you run ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 26, 2008 8:10 AM

.Net 3.5 - MVC
I received the "okay" today to develop our new application in .Net 3.5. This is really great news. I am looking forward to taking advantage of some of the new technologies available. In particular, I will be checking out the MVC Toolkit that Microsoft offers as an add-on. I have implemented MVC/MVP in previous versions of ASP.Net. The experience was cumbersome at best. The real issue I had is that it was really difficult to move the appropriate pieces out of the view and that the view knew too much ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 20, 2008 11:41 AM

Agile Statement of Work
I've been working on the Statement of Work (SOW) for the new project I am involved with. The client is looking for a lot of detail. Initially, I shared my concern about putting too much detail in this document so early in the project. We discussed the fact that we will learn a lot as the project progresses and the SOW could become severely out of date. It felt like I would be wasting a lot of time on the details. I've decided, however, that there are some advantages to this work. First, there have ......

Posted On Friday, February 15, 2008 5:41 PM

Build Under Construction
Last week I started working on the build scripts for my new project. I've worked on build environments in the past, but I didn't really commit everything to memory. Thus, I have had to reinvent the wheel in some ways. So far I have established commit and nightly builds. Each build cleans up after the previous build, retrieves the latest source, compiles the application, and runs the tests under coverage. The tools of choice: CruiseControl.Net, Subversion, NUnit, NCover, and MSBuild. Originally, I ......

Posted On Thursday, February 7, 2008 9:13 AM

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