Archives

Archives / 2003 / May
  • Welcome Brenton

    Just found out a little while ago that Brenton is on his way over.  Good deal!!!  This brings the total number of Turner bloggers up to 3: Myself, Mark, and now Brenton.

    I'm trying to convince some of our other developers that blogging is a great way to become part of the .NET community, but it's just not sinking in...

    Oh well... their loss...  Brenton: See you on the ninth 16th!

    [Listening to: Morpheus Laughing - Skinny Puppy (4:00)]

     

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  • Microsoft is missing the SDLC boat....big time....

    Alex blogs about MS missing the boat on the Software Development Life Cycle here, and I agree with him 100%... But in his rant, he asks this question:

    Source Control - Visual SourceSafe 6.0xyz. Yeah, 'xyz' is the next super minor build that will be available next month. Ok, kidding aside, SourceSafe needs to be seriously overhauled and/or replaced. I'll bet anyone $100 dollars that it is being replaced but it is WAY too late. Other products are propping up and I'm very tempted to buy them. Microsoft is lucky that I invested money in SourceSafe and I don't want to have to reinvest. It's not a good thing when your source control product is probably considered the most unreliable product available in its space. It's especially disconcerting when your development products are used by millions of developers. I would argue that Visual SourceSafe should be retired and a completely new product pushed. I don't trust SourceSafe and I've used it for quite some time; I know new folks don't trust it because they only hear horror stories. Microsoft, PLEASE give us a more robust source control product.

     

    I think I can talk about this (after all this goes back 2 /12 years), but back in the early .NET days (beta 1'ish) I remember hearing word coming out of Redmond that a new source control system was coming, and was originally supposed to ship with .NET.  I think it was called TeamSource and it was based on Exchange, had extremely tight integration with the IDE, had embedded collaboration tools, the works.  It sounded like a rockin replacement for VSS, but as work on .NET progressed, I stopped hearing rumors about TeamSource.  I guess it either got pushed back to infinity, or died an ugly death.  Who knows.

     

    We are in the process of switching to CVS (on more of a voluntary project-by-project basis), and plans for Subversion  aren't too far down the pipe; but Alex's post makes me wonder what could have been with MS's uber-SCC app.  I mean, maybe there are plans to ship something new with Whidbey (I'm sure VSS won't live forever), but MS may be missing the boat when it comes to SCC stuff.  It seems CVS is becoming a more acceptable alternative to many MS development shops.  It has here...

     

    [Listening to: Ministry - Reload (4:44)]

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  • re: Is Internet Explorer Dead?

    I agree with Don, MS is letting so much time pass since IE 6 shipped that they must have something *big* up their sleeve.  I'm going to be waiting on pins and needles for Scoble's reply (if he's able to give one).  My money says IE7 will be a major upgrade.
     
    For me though, I'm trying to figure out if it will be too late?  I've been a faithful Phoenix (now Firebird) user for almost a year now.  IE is going to have to do some amazing stuff (like fetch my bagel every morning) to convince me to switch back.
     
    [Listening to: You Often Forget - Revco (8:51)]


    From: Don XML (not that Don)
    Posted At: Tuesday, May 27, 2003 10:32 AM
    Posted To: .NET Weblogs
    Conversation: re: Is Internet Explorer Dead?
    Subject: re: Is Internet Explorer Dead?

    Ron Green (SlightlyBent) asks this question on his blog, and Robert Scoble is going to try to get an official answer from Microsoft.  But I’m going to go out on a limb here and tell you what I think.  Basically, it’s as dead as COM is.  Now I know that the answer may seem pretty cut and dry, but it really isn’t.  You really have to go back to Don Box’s December 2000 House of COM MSDN article to get an answer to the question, “Is COM dead?”  The last paragraph sums it up:

     

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  • Bought a new car this weekend...

    After 9 1/2 years of driving the same car (a '94 honda civic), I decided to by a new car this weekend... My wife and I headed over to a little known Atlanta suburb (Lithia Springs) and picked up a '03 Accord Coupe.

    If you live in the Atlanta area and are in the market for a new car, I have one piece of advice: go out to Thortorn Rd in Lithia Springings.  They like to deal.  I think we stole the Accord and about 3 years ago we stole a Pathfinder from out there.  They are just far enough outside of Atlanta that I think they like to deal to get business.

    Anyway, it's been a long time coming; I love my new car!  =)

     

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  • To Log or Not to Log... That is the question...

    Ok, sorry for the extremely poor Shakespearian reference, but its late and I've drank one to many this evening =).  Anyway, as I'm flipping through my code, adding logging information via Log4Net, I wonder: Am I getting carried away?  I guess I'm really looking for advice from people out there with experience writing logging code; just how much logging code is enough.

    I find myself wanting to write a log.info line for every executable line of code I have; and I know that's not right.  So here is the formula I'm currently using:

    • Create a logging entry at the beginning of each method that reflects the name of the method (e.g. _log.Info("Class::Method(hashcode)");
    • Create a logging entry for each "logical" unit of work (e.g. I can't really define what this is, but I know it when I see it in my code)
    • Create a logging entry for each error caught or thrown (e.g. _log.Error("Method puked", ex);)

    I'll be the first to admit, this is a pretty rudimentary approach, but at this point, I'm not sure of a better one.  The Log4Net documentation is excellent in terms of how to use Log4Net, but it doesn't describe a logging strategy.

     

    So for that logging strategy I'm turning to you, the .NET blogging community.  How do you use Log4Net in your apps?  Do you following a particular strategy/formula.  If you do please let me know, I'm sure there's a better way!

     

    [Listening to: A rerun of The Practice : my wife talk about our upcoming trip to wine country : my dogs playing with their food]

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  • Log4Net

    Currently in the middle of adding lots of logging code to my project via Log4Net.  I've got to say: I'm very impressed.  Yet another great open source project from the .NET community!

    Look for a complete write up once I'm a little more acclimated...

    [Listening to: Gravity Kills - Lost]

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  • Test post from News Gator

    Ok, if this works I'm sold on news gator.  I usually have a problem with paying for software when there are open source efforts available that do the same thing, but NewsGator rocks!

    Anyway, we'll see how it looks when I hit "post".

    Update: Ok, I'm sold.... Better get out my wallet!

    Update2: BTW Brenton, you were right about NewsGator.

    [Listening to: Dig it - Skinny Puppy]

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  • Added a link to my Blog Roll

    You can find my blog roll here. It's just a list of links to all the blogs I'm currently subscribed to (although each and every one of them is an excelled read).

    BTW, it was generated using the opml2blogroll.xslt that you can find in my code snippets section.

    [Listening to: Earthworm - OhGr - (03:22)]

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  • OPML to Blog Roll XSLT Transformation

    I got frustrated trying to keep up with my blog roll, so I decided to write a chunk of xslt to create one on the fly.  This no-frills code snippet will generate a HTML fragment in the following format:

    href="http://www.dotnetweblogs.com/dbrowning">.NET Brain Droppings

    One will be generated for each entry in your opml file (categories are skipped).

    Hope this helps everyone keep thier blog roll current!  =)

    
    <xsl:stylesheet version="1.0" xmlns:xsl="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Transform">
    <xsl:output method="html" indent="yes" standalone="no" omit-xml-declaration="yes" />
    <xsl:template match="/">
        
        <xsl:apply-templates select="//outline" />
    </xsl:template>
    <xsl:template match="outline">
        
        <xsl:choose>
            <xsl:when test="@type='rss'">
                <a href="{@htmlUrl}"><xsl:value-of select="@title" />a><br/>
            xsl:when>
        xsl:choose>
    </xsl:template>
    </xsl:stylesheet>
    The permalink to this code snippet can be found here.
    [Listening To: 38 - Revco]

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  • Added a XSLT transformation to create a blog boll from an opml file

    I got frustrated trying to keep up with my blog roll, so I decided to write a chunk of xslt to create one on the fly.  This no-frills code snippet will generate a HTML fragment in the following format:

    href="http://www.dotnetweblogs.com/dbrowning">.NET Brain Droppings

    One will be generated for each entry in your opml file (categories are skipped).

    Hope this helps everyone keep thier blog roll current!  =)

    
    <xsl:stylesheet version="1.0" xmlns:xsl="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Transform">
    <xsl:output method="html" indent="yes" standalone="no" omit-xml-declaration="yes" />
    <xsl:template match="/">
        
        <xsl:apply-templates select="//outline" />
    <xsl:template>
    <xsl:template match="outline">
        
        <xsl:choose>
            <xsl:when test="@type='rss'">
                <a href="{@htmlUrl}"><xsl:value-of select="@title" />a><br/>
            xsl:when>
        xsl:choose>
    <xsl:template>
    <xsl:stylesheet>
    You can find a permalink to this code snippet here.
    [Listening To: 200 Years - Skinny Puppy]

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  • OPML to Blog Roll XSLT Transformation

    I got frustrated trying to keep up with my blog roll, so I decided to write a chunk of xslt to create one on the fly.  This no-frills code snippet will generate a HTML fragment in the following format:

    href="http://www.dotnetweblogs.com/dbrowning">.NET Brain Droppings

    One will be generated for each entry in your opml file (categories are skipped).

    Hope this helps everyone keep thier blog roll current!  =)

    
    <xsl:stylesheet version="1.0" xmlns:xsl="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Transform">
    <xsl:output method="html" indent="yes" standalone="no" omit-xml-declaration="yes" />
    <xsl:template match="/">
        
        <xsl:apply-templates select="//outline" />
    xsl:template>
    <xsl:template match="outline">
        
        <xsl:choose>
            <xsl:when test="@type='rss'">
                <a href="{@htmlUrl}"><xsl:value-of select="@title" />a><br/>
            xsl:when>
        xsl:choose>
    xsl:template>
    xsl:stylesheet>
    

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  • The Blog Roll is Back

    Below is a listing of blogs in read everyday.  This blog roll was auto-generated using my opml2blogroll.xsl transformation.  You can find it in the code snippets section.

    .NET Weblogs
    Thoughts of a Valley's Boy
    Managed Space
    The Mountain of Worthless Information (Ted Neward)
    Peter Drayton's Radio Weblog
    A Surprisingly High Tower
    Managed Space (Jason Wittington)
    The Scobleizer Weblog
    Code/Tea/Etc...
    .Net notes
    scotg.net
    Adam Nathan's Interop-Centric CLR Blog
    b.
    Kent Sharkey's blog
    John Lambert
    Keith Pleas Blog
    Spider King of .NET Evangelism
    simplegeek
    Mike Harsh's Blog
    The Furrygoat Experience
    Wes' Puzzling Blog
    Brad Abrams
    Don Box's Spoutlet
    Jeff's Journal
    Musings from Gudge
    deem
    MSDN Just Published
    sellsbrothers.com: Windows Developer News
    Better Living Through Software
    Dr. GUI's Bits and Bytes
    InkBlog : The Random Musings of David Weller
    Sara Williams' Blog
    Rebecca Dias - Business Matters
    All Things Distributed
    Larkware News
    ScottW's ASP.NET WebLog
    Shawn A. Van Ness's Blog
    Mathew Nolton Blog
    Mark's mindless ramblings...
    .NET Blog - Chris Frazier Style
    Loosely Coupled
    mnot's weblog
    Clemens Vasters: Enterprise Development & Alien Abductions
    Luke Hutteman's Weblog
    Sam Gentile's Blog
    rchildress' space on the web
    Lutz Roeder's Weblog
    Commonality (Tomas Restrepo)
    Mono Project News
    Drew's Blog
    Greg Robinson's Blog
    Richard Tallent’s Blog
    Dave Seidel :: Wavicle
    IUnknown.com: John Lam's Weblog on Software Development
    MozillaZine
    Brenton House's .NET Blog

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  • Venting...

    SoapExtensions suck!!!!

    If you've ever worked with Remoting and you've done ChannelSinks or MessageSinks then never mess with SoapExtensions; you will rip your hair out...

    The Remoting guys made extensibility elegant; the WebServices guys made extensibility painfull!!!

    Update: After a nights sleep, I'm a little more rational.  Maybe they don't outright suck, but I'd still rather create server-side sinks in Remoting...

    [Listening to: Man Should Surrender - Pailhead - (4:42)]

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  • The CodeDOM rocks!

    I've been doing a lot of work lately with the CodeDOM namespace, and I've got to applaude Microsoft for this one. If you need to generate langugage agnostic code, this is most definatly the way to do it.

    I'm in the middle of creating a proxy generator that generates a client-side proxy for a web service (sort of like wsdl.exe does, only the proxy is spicific to our ESB architecture), and I needed to create either Visual Basic or C# source files; CodeDOM to the rescue.

    The code I currently have in place is pretty complicated, but I'm going to scale it down and post a bit of it in my codesnippet section that way its a bit more consumable. I just had to applaud MS on this one; way to go guys!

    [Listening to: My dog growl as she chases her tennis ball around]

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  • The BlogRoll is gone...

    The BlogRoll has been put out to pasture. It was severely out of date, and if I were to actually list every blog I read in a linked fashion on the right-hand column, you would have to scroll 50 miles down...

    As an alternative, I may create a story that contains links to all the blogs I read, but even that would take some work. As an alternate, I'm going to list a few of my favorites below:
    Joel on Software
    Chris Brumme
    Brad Abrams
    The Scobleizer Weblog
    Kent Sharkey's Blog
    Mark's Mind

    I'm sure it comes as no surprise that most of these are MS bloggers; its always nice to get a view of what goes on inside the walls!

    [Listening to: Cracker - OhGr - (03:32)]

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  • Goodbye DOTNET-CLR and DOTNET-ADVANCED

    Well, after more than 2 1/2 years, I've unsubscribed myself from the DevelopMentor hosted DOTNET lists. I just can't deal with the volume anymore. Not that I was really a high volume poster anyway, but I did lurk, and would help out if I could.

    The reason I say "if I could" is that my day job just didn't allow enough time to keep up with the volume of those lists. Many times, I would let the email filter into a spicific folder, then I would flip through them in the evening. The problem with that is most times, by the time I found a post I could answer, someone beat me to it...

    So, for a bit of nostalga, I though I'd include a link to my first post at the DOTNET list. Apparently, I was having problems commiting changes in a dataset (notice I called it ADO+, for those of you who missed the pre-beta1 PDC bits from Aug. 2000, .NET was called NGWS and everything was a + [ADO+, ASP+, etc.], correct me if I'm wrong, but I think NGWS stood for Next Generation Windows Services).

    Anyway, whose got time for a discussion list when there's all these kick ass blogs to read! =)

    [Listening to: Harsh Stone White - Skinny Puppy - (06:58)]

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  • SharpReader 0.9.0.2

    Luke's new release of my favorite rss aggregator (sorry Mark =) makes me wonder; does anyone out there use the web browser to read blogs anymore? I used to, but several months ago, I realized that it was futile to attempt keeping up with the 50+ blogs using a web browser (espically when one of them is Scoble's =). For me, the primary reason to use an aggregator is that it keeps track of read/unread/updated items. When you read as many blogs as I do, it is impossible to remember if you've read a post, and there is just no way to do that with a web browser.

    There's another reason I ask this question. It seems that when I post a entry using w.blogger, it never looks quite right in the browser. I think it may have to do with the way the css works at dotnetweblogs, but I'm not sure. So after posting, I go back and tweak it using the online editor to make it look pretty. Funny thing is, the post looks fine from the aggrigator. So here's my question; do any of my 3 readers (including me) view this blog via the web browser? Just curious. Because if more people use an aggrigator than the web browser I'm going to stop cleaning the post up and use w.blogger exclusively.

    [Listening to: You Often Forget - Revco - (08:52)]

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  • Is it pronounced nant or n-ant?

    This is kinda funny. When I talk to different people about using NAnt, I hear it pronounced two different ways. So which one is it? How do you pronounce it... I have to admit, I say nant, all one word. Given that both the N and the A are capitalized, I may be wrong, but I'd like to get some input from the community...

    [Listening to: Rodent - Skinny Puppy - (05:50)]

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  • (Error 0x80090022) tattoos, I'm buying

    (Error 0x80090022) For customized troubleshooting information for this connection, click Help. Thanks. That was really helpful. I was just reflecting on how much better my life would be if I could just have my own 0x80090022 to care for. As a user, don't you just gnash your teeth with this kind of stuff? As engineers we've got to realize that no normal user, upon seeing HRESULTs in error messages, ever whacks their forehead and says: "Oh! Right! The old (Error 0x80090022) silent context acquisition gag. Of course. I remember that one."

    I agree 100% with Scot on this one. If there are any people out there reading my blog who manage development teams, you need to read this entry in full; then once you've read it, you need to allocate enough time in your project plan to have someone other than a developer (PM, BA, QA resource) to write up the text of all these error messages.

    Of course as developers, we have to do our part; and a big portion of that is to use resource files for the error message text. You should try to never compile down an error message into your code. Set up a strategy for how you will handle and present error messages early in the game. Very often this is overlooked until the last minute and can prove to be a real pain late in the schedule if not handle soon enough.

    So how do I know all this? Because early on in my last development effort, we didn't set up any type of strategy, so by the time we hit UAT, we had error messages popping up from 8 different developers, all written differently (most having less than 5 words), and people were wanting them changed. Ugghhhh.... The next one will not be that way!

    [Listening to: Assimilate - Skinny Puppy - (06:58)]

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  • Thanks ScottW

    I want to take a second out to thank ScottW for providing our blog space. I did this early on when I started blogging here, but I think it needs to be said again. I know as a developer we get a lot of satisfaction in knowing that tools/apps we build are useful for our customers/consumers, but taking on an undertaking as large as dotnetweblogs has to be a labor of love. I'm sure its a lot of work to keeping it running AND working on the new features we never let up in requesting.

    Good job man! Keep it up!

    [Listening to: Deity - Ministry - (03:24)]

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  • w.blogger test post

    Sweet, I like this. I think using a tool like this will prompt me to blog a little more. While I love being a part of the dotnetweblogs community, I was't too keen on the web based interface. Rock on...

    And look, no more manually typing the currently playing track!

    [Listening to: Impossible - Ministry - (07:43)]

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