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Scott Dorman ephemeral segment May 2007 Entries
Party with Palermo: Tech·Ed 2007 edition
Even though this is my fourth Tech·Ed, it is the first time I'll be attending the Party with Palermo pre-event party. This sounds like a lot of fun. Unfortunately, I'll probably be a little bit late, but I doubt it will take away from festivities. There is an estimated 300 people attending and some great sponsors. The cover charge is one business card, which will get you in the door and register you for the grand prize drawings. This is free to attend, with free food, drink, and swag. Glo Lounge: ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 12:41 PM

Code Style and Standards: Best Practices?
For those of you who are attending Tech·Ed 2007, be sure to check out my Birds of a Feather session (BOF11) on Code Style and Standards. The session is scheduled for Tuesday, June 5, 2007 at 1:00 PM in Room S331 A. As a teaser to get you to attend, we are going to discuss what code style and standards actually mean and why they are important to you as a developer but also to your company. Yes, we will cover some of the "holy wars" regarding "curly brace placement" and "tab size", but also things ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 12:35 PM

Windows Vista Application Compatability Labs
I won't be able to attend these labs as I have other schedule conflicts, but the Windows Vista team is providing two training labs at Tech·Ed 2007. Both labs are free for Tech·Ed attendees, but you must register to reserve your spot. The first lab is an Instructor led Lab in Room S331-C and is broken up into two 90 minute parts. Part 1 takes an in-depth look at the most common application compatability issues and the ramifications of the new security enhancements in Windows Vista. This covers topics ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 12:01 PM

A lighter workload...
Today will probably be my last day of blogging for about a week while I am on vacation. I'll actually be on a cruise ship in Alaska so I won't have much (if any) internet or even cell phone access. I do get some free minutes on the ship's internet cafe, but it won't be enough for any serious work...and I can't hook my laptop up, at least without paying $0.50US per minute for access. After the cruise I will be at Tech·Ed 2007, so expect to see a lot of posts coming from that. See you there ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 10:15 AM

Microsoft Funding New Open-Source Digital IDs
Right on the heels of Microsoft's claim that free software like Linux violates 235 of its patents, they announced that they will be funding several new projects to develop open-source versions of the CardSpace technology used for digital information cards. As part of this effort, Microsoft released the Identity Metasystem under its Open Source Promise (OSP) program. The OSP program gives developer access to Web services protocols Microsoft has developed without the need for a license or fear of legal ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 9:57 AM

Google buys Feedburner
According to a recent article on TechCrunch, the RSS feed management company Feedburner is in the closing stages of being acquired by Google for around $100M US. According to their source, who is rumored to be close to the deal, it is all cash and mostly upfront. The deal is likely to close in 2-3 weeks ......

Posted On Thursday, May 24, 2007 9:41 AM

Debugging in Visual Studio 2005 with a Symbol Server
We have all had the experience of debugging an application in Visual Studio and run into the problem of not having the debugging symbols or having incorrect symbols. This is particularly true when you need to step into .NET CLR code to track down a problem. Microsoft maintains a public symbol server that provides symbols for the different Windows operating system versions, MDAC, IIS, ISA, and the .NET Framework. This server is for symbol downloads only and is not browseable. In addition to the Microsoft ......

Posted On Wednesday, May 23, 2007 4:21 PM

Do not initialize unnecessarily
If any one has ever run FxCop or Visual Studio Code Analysis (yes, I know they are basically the same thing, but there are some subtle differences) you have probably run into rule CA1805: Do not initialize unnecessarily. As I was cleaning up some FxCop errors on some inherited code today, I hit a few of these. These errors are probably one of the easiest to correct, but for some uknown reason I decided to actually look at the error help this time around. What I saw there surprised me. The help page ......

Posted On Monday, May 21, 2007 3:17 PM

Search Driven Development
A few months ago, Phil Haack wrote about a phenomena being referred to as Search Driven Development (SDD). If you don't know what Search Driven Development is, there is a great article on LinuxWorld by Ken Krugler and John D. Mitchell. According to them article About 25% of a developer's time is spend [sic] searching for information. It's well spent, though -- finding reusable code can get a project done on time and with high quality results. I don't know about you, but (like Phil) I find that Google ......

Posted On Sunday, May 20, 2007 3:05 PM

Ohloh - Open Source Project Statistics
While I'm on the topic of code metrics, I thought I would mention another interesting set of statistics provided by the Ohloh web site. This is a site that we use on Subtext to monitor the project and the statistics are integrated with our CruiseControl.NET dashboard as well. Ohloh collects software metrics from a variety of sources including the project's source code and the software development infrastructure used by the project's development team. Ohloh was founded in 2004 as a way to provide ......

Posted On Sunday, May 20, 2007 1:13 PM

NDepend 2.2
A few months ago, I wrote about Visual Studio 2005 Professional Edition and FxCop Integration and also the upcoming Visual Studio Code Metrics that will be available in the Visual Studio "Orcas" release. These are both great tools, but one is really only available if you purchase one of the Visual Studio 2005 Team Edition versions (at least, available without some extra work) and one isn't available yet except through a public beta. However, if you want the type of code analysis that you can get ......

Posted On Sunday, May 20, 2007 12:30 PM

CI Factory Beta 5 (Build 0.8.0.143)
Beta 5 (build 0.8.0.143) for CI Factory is now available. For a full description of what's in this release, check out the release notes. The big news for this release is that Vault package is ready for use and that NCover support has been updated to support NCover 1.5.8. NCover support also provides the ability to set the process for which you want coverage collected. This is important for MSTest users to utilize app.config for the test assemblies and means you don't need to use the /noisolation ......

Posted On Saturday, May 19, 2007 2:02 PM

Microsoft to Acquire aQuantive, Inc.
Microsoft has just announced (Wall Street Select announcement) that they are acquiring aQuantive for $6 billion, double the price Google paid for DoubleClick earlier this month. This is the largest acquisition in Microsoft's history, and will allow Microsoft to create the next generation of advertising platforms. When asked about how this merger will play into the the adCenter platform, Kevin Johnson, Microsoft Platform President, gave a rather noncommittal answer by saying only: ...as we pointed ......

Posted On Saturday, May 19, 2007 1:38 PM

IronPython Running on Mono
When Microsoft announced the Dynamic Language Runtime (DLR) at MIX07, it was an interesting concept. Now, thanks to some very hard work by some of the talented people on the Mono project, it only took 16 days to get Microsoft’s IronPython running with DLR on Mono. This means that IronPython can now run: In the Silverlight browser plugin Natively on Windows Vista On Windows XP with WinFx On Linux, BSD, and OSX with Mono It also means that the other dynamic languages (IronRuby, VBx, Smalltalk/DLR, ......

Posted On Saturday, May 19, 2007 10:50 AM

Tech·Ed for Novices
Microsoft has created a Tips for the "Newbie" page designed to give first time Tech·Ed attendees a fighting chance of finding their way around. It does a decent job letting the first timer know about what Tech·Ed has to offer, but I don't think it goes nearly far enough. Tech·Ed is a huge event, last year's event had about 13000 people attending, with an equally huge amount of content. The current count of sessions (including the Hands-on labs) is 1057. That's right, over 1000 sessions. The actual ......

Posted On Saturday, May 19, 2007 10:32 AM

BlueCasting at Tech·Ed!
Last time it was RFID, this time it's Bluetooth. If you have a Bluetooth-enabled mobile device, you have the opportunity to receive content on it. What this content actually is hasn't been mentioned yet, but hopefully it will involve useful things like schedule changes and other important information. All you need to do is set your device's Bluetooth setting to "Discoverable". Of course, hopefully you'll remember to bring a charger and plug in every night to recharge ......

Posted On Saturday, May 19, 2007 8:12 AM

Windows Server 2008
Windows Server "Longhorn" has officially been named Windows Server 2008. To go along with the name change, Microsoft has made Beta 3 publicly available for download. You can download it from either the TechNet Beta Central site, or the MSDN Evaluation Center site. You can also order it on DVD ......

Posted On Friday, May 18, 2007 1:37 PM

Mindscape BrainDump
My friend Simone, from Subtext and the creator of the CCNET monitor gadget for Vista, was just interviewed for the first Mindscape BrainDump video blog post. Check out the full video at: BrainDump #1 - Simone Chiaretta. Congratulations, Simone ......

Posted On Friday, May 18, 2007 1:24 PM

Virtual Tech·Ed is live
One of the "staples" of the Tech·Ed experience has always been the Virtual TechEd site. This year, Microsoft is changing things around a little bit and making the site live year round in order to extend the Tech·Ed experience before, during, and after the conference. As part of the new experience, the site has undergone a major facelift, and the home page is broken down into 4 sections: News & Happenings Oline Sessions Tech·Ed RSS Feeds Other Resources As I was browsing the site, I noticed that ......

Posted On Friday, May 18, 2007 1:19 PM

Smart Client Sessions Calendar for Tech·Ed 2007
One of the topic areas that I am focusing on at Tech·Ed this year is Smart Clients. In keeping with my other Internet Calendars, I have created a calendar for all of the Smart Client related sessions. It is available at: webcals://calendars.office.... ......

Posted On Wednesday, May 16, 2007 4:20 PM

Added Management and Operations Track Calendar
It was just pointed out to me that I missed publishing the calendar for the Management and Operations Track. It is now available at: webcals://calendars.office.... The complete list is: All sessions, by Track: TechEd 2007 - Architecture Track TechEd 2007 - Business Applications Track TechEd 2007 - Business Intelligence Track TechEd 2007 - Database Development and Administration Track TechEd 2007 - Developer ......

Posted On Tuesday, May 15, 2007 11:22 AM

Tech·Ed Hands-on Labs and Instructor-Led Labs
It looks like the Hands-on and Instructor-Led Labs at Tech·Ed this year are getting a major technology upgrade. All of the workstations (and there are 1200 of them) have dual monitors with live updating manuals. You will get more than just the lab manual this time around as well. You get the lab manual, whitepapers, blogs, webcasts, and websites. You will be able to read them in the lab or email them to yourself for later reading. You will also be able to comment on the lab as you do it, read other's ......

Posted On Monday, May 14, 2007 12:14 PM

Joost - The new way of watching TV
Joost is a new way of watching TV on the internet. With Joost, you get all the things you love about TV, including a high-quality full-screen picture, hundreds of full-length shows and easy channel-flipping. You get great internet features too, such as search, chat and instant messaging, built right into the program - so you find shows quickly and talk to your friends while you watch. And with no schedules to worry about, you can watch whatever you want, whenever you like - as often as you want. ......

Posted On Sunday, May 13, 2007 2:13 AM

Windows Live Writer gets a new URL
Up until now, Windows Live Writer has not had a good product page to reference. Anyone who wanted to linked their blog posts either to the Writer Team Blog or directly the Writer MSI. That has all changed! Now you can also directly navigate to the Writer product page directly at: http://writer.live.com/. It features links to the Writer Team Blog and the Writer feedback forum. Now we just have to wait for an updated release ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 7:47 PM

Posts now use friendly names

I have finally switched over to using "friendly names" for my blog posts. I think I was the last hold-out among the Subtext developers. One of the statistics that Site Meter provides is the ability to show entry and exit pages. This is great, except for the fact that all of my posts up until now had a numeric name, so it made it very difficult to see what the post was. None of the old posts will be renamed, but the new ones will have a friendly name based on the post title.

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 2:09 PM

Subtext 1.9.5 officially named "Artificial Horizon"
As I mentioned earlier, Subtext 1.9.5 was officially released yesterday without mention of a codename. The missing codename was an oversight, as it is officially named "Artificial Horizon". For those of you keeping track, all of the Subtext code names follow a nautical theme, usually one that sounds cool and has some relation to the features in that release. The current list of releases is: 1.0 - Nautilus 1.5 - Nautilus R & R 1.9 - Daedelus 1.9.2 - Shields Up 1.9.3 - Repair Job 1.9.4 - Windward ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 2:06 PM

High Voltage Transmission Line Worker
And you thought your job was dangerous? Seriously, these guys (and girls?) have what I would consider to be an extremely stressful and dangerous job and one that is completely taken for granted. This holds not only for the guy traveling around the wires, but also for the helicopter pilots, who must have rock-steady nerves to hold the helo still that close to the wires. How often do you think about what it takes to maintain the high voltage lines that all of us depend so much on...and how quickly ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 1:34 PM

Windows Live Hotmail official
Earlier this week, Microsoft rather quietly released it's Windows Live Hotmail offering. Along with the release, a replacement for the Outlook Express and Windows Mail desktop clients was announced as well as new software to integrate web mail with Outlook, called the Outlook Internet Mail Connector. Outlook Express and Windows Mail will be replaced with a new desktop product called Windows Live Mail in the coming weeks. The program will handle POP, IMAP, and Windows Live Hotmail accounts and is ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 1:13 PM

SQL Server "Katmai" to ship in 2008
According to InfoWorld, Microsoft announced at it's first Business Intelligence Conference that the next version of Microsoft SQL Server, code-named Katmai, will be released sometime next year. No word yet on what features will and won't make it into the shipping version. Microsoft also announced at the conference was Microsoft's acquisition of SoftArtisans' OfficeWriter product, which allows users to author reports in Word and Excel ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 12:46 PM

True or False
This was just sent to me in email...for those of you who are Trivial Pursuit fans, can you guess which ones are true and which are false? Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning. Alfred Hitchcock didn't have a belly button. A pack-a-day smoker will lose approximately 2 teeth every 10 years. People do not get sick from cold weather; it's from being indoors a lot more. When you sneeze, all bodily functions stop, even your heart! Only 7 per cent of the population are ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 12:42 PM

Microsoft may buy Yahoo!
In this eWeek.com article and Reuters, Microsoft is pursuing a deal to buy Yahoo!, Inc. as a result of increased competition from Google. The two companies have had informal talks over the years about this possibility, but this time it looks a little more serious. According to Peter Lobravico, of Wall Street Access: "It's been talked about for a long time, ever since Google came into the picture. I can't imagine a more perfect deal. You can't find a stronger buyer than Microsoft and while it would ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 12:36 PM

Site Meter - Counter and Statistics Tracker
Courtesy of Snap.com, I came across Site Meter, which provides comprehensive real time website tracking and counter tools give you instant access to vital information and data about your sites audience. With our detailed reporting you'll have a clear picture of who is visiting your site, how they found you, where they came from, what interests them and much more. Site Meter provides some of the same statistics counting as ClustrMaps, but also provides a lot more details, similar to what you can get ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 12:21 PM

New SnapShots
Last month, I talked about the new SnapShots and mentioned that Snap is working on adding new SnapShots. They have added some new Shots and updated some existing ones. PhotoShot™ PhotoShot puts an entire online photo album into a Shot. PhotoShots can be triggered by links to files hosted on Flickr, Photobucket, and Picasa Web. Reuters CompanyNewsShot The latest custom shot leverages Reuters' global news capabilities and the Snap Shots platform to deliver story headlines for publicly-traded companies. ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 11:54 AM

Microsoft, SanDisk to Develop Advanced Memory Cards
According to this eWeek.com article, Microsoft and SanDisk are working to develop advanced memory cards "that allow consumers to easily take their data with them in one small device." SanDisk will be developing the actual hardware, which is supposed to be about the size of a pack of chewing gum and can be plugged into a port on multiple computers. Microsoft will develop the software. The cards will be available in the second half of 2008. Now, maybe I'm being a nay-sayer here, but doesn't this sound ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 11:39 AM

Subtext 1.9.5 Released
Subtext 1.9.5 has been released to the public. This is primarily a bug-fix release but does include some new features. Oddly enough, this is the first release to go out the door without a codename. Installing on a clean machine or upgrading an earlier 1.9 release are both relatively easy. If there are any ideas to make upgrading easier, we'd love to hear them. This is scheduled to be the last release in the 1.9 branch, unless there are high priority bugs found that need to be fixed. What this means ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 10:48 AM

Insert Video with Windows Live Writer
In writing my last post, I came across an excellent plugin that allows you to insert a video from MSN Soapbox, Google Video, YouTube, MySpace Video, Yahoo! Video, muveeMix, and myvideo.de. This plugin is extremely easy to use, but it does require you to know the URL of the video ahead of time. As you can see, you have a lot of formatting options when inserting the video and can modify everything except the link after it has been inserted. The plugin also provides an options dialog where you can set ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 10:23 AM

CC.NET Vista Sidebar Gadget 0.8 Released
Earlier this month, I talked about the upcoming release of Simone's CC.NET Monitor Gadget for the Vista Sidebar. I'm very pleased to announce now that version 0.8 has been released. This release adds the following features: new tab style settings page ability to monitor more than one CC.NET dashboard possibility to choose which project to display for each server added a license page (which is the new BSD license, as stated in my copyright and licensing policy) added an icon at the bottom of both ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 10:07 AM

Updated Tech·Ed 2007 Session Calendars
The great folks at EventPoint (the company that coordinates Tech·Ed for Microsoft and is responsible for the Schedule Builder) have updated the RSS feed I was using to generate the Internet Calendars to include the rest of the sessions as well as some additional data that made my life much easier. (Thanks, Andy!) I have updated the calendars, so if you downloaded these as a subscription it should have been automatically updated. If not, you can download them from the following links. I have also ......

Posted On Saturday, May 12, 2007 2:36 AM

Windows Live Writer updates
I use Windows Live Writer for writing almost all of my blog posts. It has been in beta for a long time and isn't showing any signs of being released any time soon. As a result, there was a lot of speculation that the product was dying a slow death. I'm very happy to say that is not the case. Simone pointed me to some screenshots showing a new version of WLW that is in the works. There are a lot of updates in the new release, including the ability to add tables, insert images from the web, inline ......

Posted On Thursday, May 10, 2007 7:31 PM

Outlook 2007 Internet Calendar Subscriptions
Just as my last post was publishing, I realized that many people might not know about the Internet Calendar Subscriptions in Outlook 2007 or may still be using Outlook 2003. Michael Affronti, the Outlook Program Manager, has a great post describing Internet Calendar Subscriptions and how you can interact with them in Outlook 2007. For those of you who are still using Outlook 2003, there is an open-source add-in that allows you to work with Internet Calendars ......

Posted On Thursday, May 10, 2007 5:20 PM

Tech·Ed 2007 Session Calendars
[edit: 16 May 2007] The calendars have been updated and a few new ones added. Check this post for more details. [/edit] Even though the Tech·Ed 2007 Schedule Builder is live, it is just as cumbersome (in my opinion) to use as ever. I had hoped that with the advent of AJAX, Silverlight, and the other interactive web technologies the schedule builder would have been more...interactive. The idea of having to pick a time period from a drop down list that contains more than 20 items and constantly having ......

Posted On Thursday, May 10, 2007 5:11 PM

Save the Date for Tech·Ed 2008

Wow...Tech·Ed 2007 hasn't even started yet and already Microsoft is starting the advertising for Tech·Ed 2008. Currently, it is planned to be in Orlando again, June 9-13. See you there!

Posted On Saturday, May 5, 2007 12:10 AM

Phil Haack (Subtext) Podcast interview
Phil Haack was interviewed at MIX07 by Tim Heuer for his new TimCast podcast. In the interview, which lasts about 7 minutes, Phil explains how he got started working on Subtext, and open source in general. About half-way through the interview, Tim asks about the community support for Subtext, and he mentions the work Simone Chiaretta and I did on the Subtext build dashboard...even mentioning us by name. You can download the audio for the interview and read the original announcement at Phil's blog. ......

Posted On Friday, May 4, 2007 11:28 PM

Community Credit Winner for April
I was just awarded 5th prize for April 2007. This goes along with the 16th place prize I won back in February. “ This shirt may be, according to various scientific research councils we paid off, the World's Most Clever Shirt ever. It's quite possibly the World's Most Clever Shirt Ever. EVAR! That's like forever, without the for part. ” The great thing about it is that I get some cool prizes for doing what I normally do every day. The even better thing is that I was able to get 5th place out of just ......

Posted On Thursday, May 3, 2007 12:09 AM

CC.NET Vista Sidebar Gadget updates
For those of you who are keeping up with the progress Simone Chiaretta has been making on his excellent CC.NET Monitor gadget, he is getting ready to release the 0.8 version. This version includes a lot of feedback received, and implements the following features: new tab style settings page ability to monitor more than one CC.NET dashboard possibility to choose which project to display for each server added a license page (which is the new BSD license, as stated in my copyright and licensing policy) ......

Posted On Wednesday, May 2, 2007 11:44 PM

Silverlight going open source, sort of...
Last month, I blogged about Adobe Flex going open source. It seems Microsoft has taken notice, and is making some of Silverlight available as open source. Microsoft is also releasing the Dynamic Language Runtime (DLR) and IronPython on CodePlex under the Microsoft Permissive License. This allows developers and users to view, modify and redistribute source code for either commercial or non-commercial purposes, and also to charge a license fee for any code they've added to the software. A DLR based ......

Posted On Wednesday, May 2, 2007 11:32 PM

The most important open-source apps
eWEEK Labs has named the 18 most important open-source applications. These are applications that have helped make open-source technologies integral enterprise tools. In no particular order, here they are: Apache Linux Kernel Nessus Firefox Perl Wireshark PHP VNC BSD Webmin Asterisk Nmap OpenOffice.org MySQL Nagios Eclipse Samba OpenSSH and OpenSSL I think this is a pretty comprehensive list, and there are only a few on here that I haven't heard of before ......

Posted On Wednesday, May 2, 2007 11:12 PM

Code Style and Standards: Best Practices? - BOF11

The TechEd 2007 Schedule Builder has been updated with the Birds-of-a-Feather sessions. If you're going, be sure to check out my session on Code Style and Standards.

Posted On Wednesday, May 2, 2007 11:04 PM

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