# Friday, 11 March 2005

Well wooptidoo: Linus Tovalds gets Mac and install Linux on it. So basically every news source has a story on how nothing has changed in Linux land other than Linus is now focusing on the 64–bit core instead of 32–bit. I may just have to go and lay down for moment – the excitement is too much I tell ya!

This one is right up there with the angry MVPs who want VB6 back. I guess nothing much is going on at the moment

posted on Friday, 11 March 2005 13:45:58 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I was struggling with solving an issue with a server control for ASP.NET which I couldn’t quite figure out. After much trial and error I finally pulled up good old Reflector and had a look at some of the control supplied with ASP.NET. This gave me some much needed inspiration on how to proceed.

Once again two thumbs up for Lutz Roeder for writing Reflector. I may have to write an ode to both of them one day

posted on Friday, 11 March 2005 13:41:42 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I’m always on the lookup for something different to subscribe to. Today it comes in the form of Drawn a blog dedicated to drawing. As the name implies you’ll find lots and lots of cool drawings posted every day.

Go take a look yourself. Here’s some art for the movie Robots which I found while looking through some of the stuff.


posted on Friday, 11 March 2005 13:37:08 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

You need three things to create a successful startup: to start with good people, to make something customers actually want, and to spend as little money as possible. Most startups that fail do it because they fail at one of these. A startup that does all three will probably succeed.

More at How to Start a Startup

posted on Friday, 11 March 2005 13:11:43 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Should Microsoft continue to support VB6? No! Why? I’ll tell you why, or rather I’ll point you to Public Class GeoffAppleby where a well put together post sums up my feelings on this non-issue pretty well: Ranting about the VB rant

Be sure to read the comments too, they’re a hoot.

posted on Friday, 11 March 2005 11:29:25 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 09 March 2005

When thinking about new home projects I’d like to create I often get stuck at the point in the process where I need to think about the interface for the application. More often than not I have a very good idea of where I want to take the app, but not really a clear idea of how I’ll get there.

Interface Design Tips That You May Not Know About may help me get to the actual implementation of the interface for a change

posted on Wednesday, 09 March 2005 15:45:12 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 08 March 2005
This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.
posted on Tuesday, 08 March 2005 09:22:18 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, 04 March 2005

Looks like we will be able to go live on Whidbey beta 2. Microsoft offers support from this version on. Here a quote from Wes at .NET Undocumented:

I came across a blog comment by a Microsoft employee, that the Whidbey beta 2 should be coming up in the next few days. This is a few weeks earlier than the the March 31 delivery date announced by Somasegar, corporate VP of Microsoft’s developer divisions, but still in line with statements made five weeks ago that the next Avalon and Indigo CTP, both dependent on Beta 2, will arrive in about “six weeks.” It’s about time.

More information about Whidbey beta 2 on .NET Undocumented.

posted on Friday, 04 March 2005 09:22:48 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Sijin has written an article on Code Project on how the internals of the MessageBox works in .NET: Dissecting the MessageBox. Definitely a must-read if you want to get a feel for how the WinForms controls are put together.
posted on Friday, 04 March 2005 09:07:22 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

If that head line doesn’t get you off of your chair, nothing will  Graham Glass, John Wiegand, and Erich Gamma offers some useful advice for building good software in a series of posts on Graham Glass, etc.

How to Produce Good Software, Part 1

I've decided to write a series of blog entries about how to produce good software. Over the years, I've had the pleasure of writing a lot of award-winning software, and thought it would be fun to document the way that it was done. I also hope that the lessons learned will be useful to readers of this blog.

The specific areas that I intend to cover include:

  • methodology
  • tools
  • building a team
  • release cycles
  • testing
  • support

How to Produce Good Software, Part 2

In this part, I thought I'd present a little bit of my software writing background to provide some context for future parts.

How to Produce Good Software, Part 3

In this part, before I delve into the production of the software itself, I thought I'd write a little about why we chose to build the particular products that we did.

How to Produce Good Software, Part 4

In this part, I describe the activities that took place in the first few months of development. Things like marketing, pricing, and other such stuff are left out because they're outside the scope of this series.

How to Produce Good Software, Part 5

In this part, I focus on the power of simplicity, which contributed to the widespread awareness of products like Glue

How to Produce Good Software, Part 6

In this part (written during my lunch break while visiting webMethods in Sunnyvale, CA) I focus on how we planned product roadmaps.

posted on Friday, 04 March 2005 08:44:56 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Ever wondered how Google does the things it does so well? Peeking Into Google gives you a technical insight into the inner workings of Google, albeit a high level insight.
posted on Friday, 04 March 2005 08:37:36 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, 03 March 2005

I’ve had a problem with the CInt, CDbl, CWhatever casts in VB.NET from day one. Maybe it’s just because I dislike VBScript so much that something carried over to .NET. I must admit that my preference goes to C# for it’s cleanness. The .NET framework was developed from ground up and this approach made it possible to start over and get rid of of the baggage which accumulates during the years a technology exists. Now why would you go ahead and add some of the baggage back in by adding VB6 compatibility on top in the form of VB.NET?

Understand me right, VB.NET is great but one of the things which bugs me about VB.NET are the choices made to keep many of the weird little “features” of VB6 in VB.NET. VB.NET is different in so many important aspects that it’s almost painful to think that anyone in their right mind would keep the little weirdnesses in for the sake of existing developers. I mean come on, they had to learn all kinds of OOP techniques, patterns, and so forth, why wouldn’t you just get rid of the weird stuff?!

Dustin Aleksiuk gives a great example you should be aware of if you are using VB.NET: The CInt cast. Take a few seconds and draw up in your mind the way you think it works. I almost guarantee you that the actual implementation will surprise you.


posted on Thursday, 03 March 2005 14:35:18 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Looking for more information about the Enterprise Library from the Patterns & Practice group at Microsoft? Each and every building block of the library will be dedicated a web cast giving you the opportunity to pick the area you have special interest in.

Enterprise Library Webcast Series

posted on Thursday, 03 March 2005 14:06:37 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

You should definitely check out Mike Roberts’ How to Setup a .NET Development Tree articles which details a good structure for your .NET project along with source control organization. Often I find solutions which are structured in a weird way and it annoys me to no end.

Mike did a series of articles on the subject and you can grab the whole thing in PDF format for easy accessibility. A must read for everyone who sets up new projects!

posted on Thursday, 03 March 2005 10:49:03 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Along with the 30 Minute Regex Tutorial the Understanding Basic Regular Expressions article should give you a solid start into the wonderful world of regular expressions. Often I have found myself comparing regular expressions to SQL in that they both provide very elegant solutions to difficult problems, although getting at the solution may be more than challenging from time to time
posted on Thursday, 03 March 2005 09:15:42 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 02 March 2005

Somehow the desktop tools from Google and later MSN just didn’t do it for me. Google Search fell on the horrible web server which inject results on the Google. The basic idea of transparently injecting the results into my normal Google searches appeals to me but it just isn’t that practical in my day to day routine. The outlook of security holes in the web server software makes it an even easier choice to remove it. Also searching everything as administrator gives you access to every other user’s files on the system which can be a plus but I find that I’d like to be able to decide the default behavior.

MSN Search did a lot of things right but again I just didn’t use it all that much. It must be the fact that MSN Search was horrible for a long which kind of branded that impression in my brain and now I can’t seem to shake the feeling. I can’t put my finger on what made me remove it, it just didn’t feel “right”. One thing I do miss from MSN search is the ability to search

Enter Copernic Desktop Search a very overlooked piece of software. Something feels different here. Again I’m unable to put my finger on something specific. Maybe it’s the polished user interface, maybe it’s the fact that if I choose to search files and don’t find anything it tells me that something was found in say e-mail. Maybe it’s because it kind of reminds me of the standard Windows search features which I’ve been using for years. Maybe it’s the preview feature of the search result which will display the contents of Word files for example.


posted on Wednesday, 02 March 2005 19:27:24 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback


posted on Wednesday, 02 March 2005 10:54:17 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 01 March 2005

By weird coinsidence Kathy Sierra follows up on the How to Read and Digest a Book! I posted about yesterday with a post named Dealing with a legacy brain... where she chronicles the problems with trying to get your brain to want the same things as you do.

Basically the brain is hard wired to live in the stone age where such things as food is hard to come by, and danger is around in abundance. Today we face almost exactly the opposite situation: Food is abundant for people of the western world, and dangerous situations almost only happens if you actively seek them out.

This is very much relevant for your learning process which you will learn when reading Dealing with a legacy brain... by Kathy Sierra. She even details a couple of techniques you can use to better process new information.

posted on Tuesday, 01 March 2005 14:15:56 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 28 February 2005

Clemens Vasters posts a mini series about Indigo, a technology I’ve gained better appreciation of since learning that our first application based on service oriented architecture is in the pipes. Thinking about the problems we face in development using this architecture makes me want Indigo right away

Go read Part 1 Simple Messaging, Part 2 Fun with Messaging and Explicit Addressing, and Part 3 Hard-Core Messaging. Duplex Conversations your brain will thank you for the stimulation, I swear!

posted on Monday, 28 February 2005 13:52:40 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A skill which is often overlooked when trying to improve oneself is the reading skill, even though most relevant information is aggregated through this medium. How to Read and Digest a Book! is a post which got me thinking about my reading habits and what I might do to improve them.

For me personally more and more interesting information is gathered from the text medium. Mostly due to the advent of RSS feeds where I need to have focus on fast processing of posts if I am to stay up to date with all the exciting stuff people post about.

For me to engage in a piece of text for learning purposes I have found that taking notes is the best practice. It may lengthen the reading process somewhat but my thoughts are focused and more information tend to stick for a longer period of time. Another plus is that I can always go back to my notes and look for the points which I found important at the time.

posted on Monday, 28 February 2005 13:35:14 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

My favorite spam filter for Outlook got bumped to version 3 recently. Of course I was delighted to learn that a new version is out and went to their site to grab the update. Upon installing the new version it told me that my purchased key for version 2 was invalid. Puzzled I browsed to the Spam Bully site and learned that apparently you need to buy a new key for version 3, although at a slightly reduced price.

What’s up with that?!

posted on Monday, 28 February 2005 13:20:47 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

My colleagues and I have been doing some Google optimizations on various sites we develop in-house and were discussing what the potential candidates for such optimizations might be. The unanimous answer is: URL rewriting.

Simply having the search term in the URL of the page will get you ranked very high on Google indeed. This being one of the technical factors which you can actually control as opposed to inbound links, it’s something I just don’t understand that every web site out there provide.

Since upgrading DasBlog to version 1.7 which supports URL rewriting I’ve seen page ranks for my posts rise significantly to the point where I’m listed on the first search page for several of my posts, though mostly on the localized version of Google. The main page would require inbound trafic from Robert Scoble to make even a dent in the ranks

Using ASP.NET it’s very easy to accomplish. Head on over the MSDN and read the article URL Rewriting in ASP.NET more information and code examples on how to accomplish this feat.

posted on Monday, 28 February 2005 13:17:35 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback