Drew's Blog

The Joys of Technology Explored

July 2002 - Posts

Streams and Formatters in .NET

Streams and Formatters in .NET

There's a great article over on DevX that covers the Stream and Formatter architectures. It does so from a VB.NET point of view, which is fine because the article is attempting to teach people converting from VB6- to VB.NET to move away from the proprietary VB file operations. In general, the article is generic enough that the knowledge is applicable in all languages and is definitely worth the read.

Posted: Jul 25 2002, 12:43 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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The .NET Show: Understanding the Framework

The .NET Show: Understanding the Framework

There's a new .NET show online over at MSDN. This one is about understanding the design of the framework class libraries. Here's a quick summary ripped straight from the site:

One of the most common issues that I hear from programmers who are beginning to use .NET for developing their applications is that they are having some problems understanding the structure and layout of the .NET Framework and the features that it supplies. So I thought it might be a good idea to take a look at the "object model" of the .NET Framework and hopefully give you a better understanding of how it is organized.

Posted: Jul 25 2002, 09:33 AM by drub0y | with no comments
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RE: Usability and Font Sizes

RE: Usability and Font Sizes

Please, whatever you do, don't use small, large, x-large, etc.! The actual sizes vary from browser to browser what looks normally sized in IE looks microscopic in Mozilla, or vice versa. [The .NET Guy]

Hmm... I just did a quick test. Using the em measurement is identical in both browsers as expected and while the named sizes are not exact, they are very close and are indeed still relative to the browsers text size:

Relative Font Sizes

Posted: Jul 25 2002, 09:21 AM by drub0y | with 2 comment(s)
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Usability and Font Sizes

Usability and Font Sizes

All I can say is: Guilty as charged! This is one issue I'm working on, as well as making both the MC++ FAQ and this weblog pages be XHTML compliant, but it's not as easy as I thought it would be. The fact that dealing with relative font sizes in IE is a pain in the butt doesn't help, specially with Verdana as the font... [Commonality]

The font-family should not matter. Just make sure to use the em length unit in your font-size attribute and you should be all set. Either that or use the relative-size keywords (i.e. small, large, x-large, etc.).

Posted: Jul 24 2002, 08:30 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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Benchmarks: Oracle Managed Provider vs. OleDb Provider

Benchmarks: Managed Provider vs. OleDb Provider for Oracle 9i

A new article on MSDN presents some benchmark results comparing the .NET Framework Data Provider for Oracle with the OLE DB provider when interacting with an Oracle 9i database. [System.Error.Emit]

Woah. That's a staggeringly huge difference. For anyone out there that is or is going to be backending their system with Oracle 9i, there's no question that you should used the managed provider and avoid OleDb like the plague. :)

Posted: Jul 24 2002, 08:16 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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Comparing XML "Data Binding" in Java and .NET

Comparing XML "Data Binding" in Java and .NET

There's an article over on the O'Reilly Network that compares the implementation of XML data binding in .NET to an implementation in Java called Castor. Basically, Castor is to Java as XSD is to .NET. It parses an XML Schema document and emits .java source files for each type.

I don't know if I like the author's choice of using the term "data binding" as it has a slightly different meaning usually: binding visual elements to data sources via some sort of implementation of the MVC pattern.

Posted: Jul 24 2002, 07:54 PM by drub0y | with 1 comment(s)
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Gates: Slow going for .Net

Gates: Slow going for .Net. Microsoft acknowledges that its key software plan has been slow to catch on and lays out an agenda to move it ahead. [CNET News.com]

Hmm... even though I know very well that .NET is used as an umbrella term, when I see headline like this I can't help but shake my head. In the article they're talking about the Web Services portion of .NET and how not many companies have hoped on the bandwagon as far as delivering custom services. I think is mostly due in part to the power of SOAP as it exists today not being fully understood and that a lot of people are waiting on features that are coming with GXA. Gates also had the following to say about .NET My Services:

"There were elements of (.Net My Services) that in some ways were premature," Gates said. "We feel good about (the vision of .Net My Services), but we made a couple of missteps on this."

The article goes on to say that the failure of .NET My Services was political not technical.

Posted: Jul 24 2002, 07:50 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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He's Alive!

He's Alive!

Thought you got rid of me, eh?! ;) Heheh, sorry for the silence for the past two or so weeks. We've been working pretty hard on reaching code-freeze for the next version of the Mimeo web site. I'm happy to say we reached that milestone last night and we're going to deliver this weekend.

This is the third major upgrade to the site since we launched in '99, so we're pretty much keeping in line with the yearly upgrade schedule most products seem to have. We've of course had minor upgrades in between, but those are never as radical as the major versions.

We've done many practice runs at converting our database schemas and releasing the code is a simple xcopy. We had three Murphy's law encounters last week as we were driving for code complete! Hopefully we can avoid any such encounters release night.

Posted: Jul 24 2002, 07:42 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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A Replacement for WTC

A Replacement for WTC

WTC 2002. Very ambitious and great looking plans for the replacement for the World Trade Center towers, dubbed The World Trace Center 2002. Requires Flash 6 (and it didn't seem happy to work with Mozilla here, so you may need to revert to IE). [The .NET Guy]

Very, very ambitious. It certainly is a beautiful structure and the idea for the memorial sounds really nice. The voting system currently shows 89% of the votes in favor of the concept. Have a look for yourselves.

Posted: Jul 12 2002, 07:20 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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New MSDN XML Web Services Site Goes Live

New MSDN XML Web Services Site Goes Live

New MSDN XML Web Services site goes live!. Tim Ewald ships before Don does... [Don Box's Spoutlet]

Here's a direct link.

Posted: Jul 12 2002, 07:06 PM by drub0y | with no comments
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