Jeff and .NET

The .NET musings of Jeff Putz

Sponsors

News

My Sites

Archives

June 2004 - Posts

Developer snobbery is bad for everyone

Inspired by a comment left by Jerry Pisk, I find it disturbing that people can get all worked up over the fact that Microsoft is releasing tools (or I should say, has released tools for years) that cater to less skilled developers. Jerry's comments about "programmer wannabes" reek of developer snobbery.

You would think by now that this mentality would have gone away, but clearly it hasn't. I remember computer enthusiasts in the early 90's that thought they were better than everyone else because they knew their way around a DOS prompt and didn't need Windows. In fact, you still get that from Linux geeks.

Programmers are guilty of it too. I'd say Visual Basic people in particular have been fighting this for years, as critics suggest that anything too easy to use isn't real programming. I've seen some people go as far as saying that writing managed code on .NET is inferior because you're not manipulating memory the way you would in C++.

What's that all about? There are two reasons that I find these comments annoying. The first is that 99% of programming tasks don't require the kind of performance that C++ will give you. The second is that VB and managed code allow us to write software faster, in a world where time is money. Tools like Visual Studio also help in this goal.

Yes, I understand that some people might be offended by the use of drag-and-drop visual programming. Get over it. While I personally don't use it, I can see where the two people that consist of a company's entire IT staff can use it and get what they need out of it. Ditto for the users of the new Express products.

It would be more constructive for everyone if the snobs would mentor and guide the “n00bs” instead of dogging them and the products they use. Thumping your chest and inviting people to test your testicular fortitude is not a good use of your time. This is a subject near and dear to me, not only because of the training and consulting I've done, but because of the book I'm writing. My audience is not stupid or ignorant, but they are eager to learn.

What are you doing to make the developer community better?

Posted: Jun 30 2004, 01:11 PM by Jeff | with 6 comment(s)
Filed under: ,
Would you like to save a dump?

One of the things I do “on the side” is compress video for delivery on the Web. Given my television background B.P. (before programming), it seemed like a natural fit to get into it.

The software I use is Cleaner, which is now owned by Discreet. Cleaner 5 was a great product. I personally use it with the Sorenson Video codec to squeeze out high-quality QuickTime. If it's good enough for movie trailers, it's good enough for me. Cleaner 5 had a great interface and great output.

Then, I think more than a year ago now, some clever idiot decided to diverge the product lines. Cleaner 6 would appear only for the Mac with the tried and true interface, and Windows would get Cleaner XL, a totally new product. The positives were that it encoded almost twice as fast as Cleaner 5, and it was written in .NET (not a feature, but kinda cool at a time when you didn't see a lot of commercial desktop .NET apps).

The bad part is that the software is pure shit with an illogical interface that never works. Even after two service packs, I can't get it to even run anymore. When I try to launch the program, I get, “Cleaner has crashed. Would you like to save a dump?” No thanks, I'd rather flush it down the toilet. That's where my dumps go.

I guess at this point I'm going to have to explore Sorenson Squeeze because it won't ask me if I want to save my dumps. Anyone have any experience with the tool?

Posted: Jun 30 2004, 12:04 PM by Jeff | with 2 comment(s)
Filed under: ,
Are Slashdotters really 99% ignorant?

Every once in awhile I'll pop over to Slashdot to see what the peeps have to say about something newsworthy. At the very least you can find some Gates-hating to laugh at. I can't for the life of me figure out the structure of their comment system (I am, after all, a mindless drone .NET developer), but I found some choice comments.

“MS are worried that the windows platform is hemorrhaging developers to linux/OS X platforms.”
That's a pretty good one. Call me crazy, but the recruiters call now more than ever, and we're shipping people in from all over the world to fill .NET jobs in the Greater Cleveland area. Maybe his definition of “hemorrhaging” is different than mine.

“Actually this is a move to knock out DevC++, gcc, Eclipse, and Netbeans.
The more you get people to use "windows only" solutions the better microsoft feels.
They know it is all about the developers and want to lock them down as hard and as fast they can.”

I'm sure that last part was at the front of Rob Howard's mind the last few years, right? I'm sure that most folks at Microsoft just want to deliver the most kick ass software they can. That's what drives them. The real benefit to Microsoft is that they sell server licenses. I think it has always been about server licenses, thus the move to build inexpensive IDE's.

“Still, it's clear from these 'express' editions that MS is worried by the number of free alternative IDEs that are springing up - in particular Eclipse.”
Yes, because people are flocking en masse to Eclipse to build .NET apps. Clear, right! I'm guessing that this guy thinks developers are willing to change platforms and languages like they change their underwear everyday. I've never understood this mentality. I know enough about Java to think it's pretty cool, but why the hell would I want to learn it when I'm working to be an expert in .NET? I wouldn't want to hire someone average at a lot of things, I'd want someone to be an expert for what I need.

“Will the EULA allow development of commercial products? Lots of "hobby" or "student" projects end up for sale or as shareware. Will people making that switch then have to buy the real thing?”
Is it that hard to read that this is beta software? If these people understand software development so well, you'd think they'd understand why Microsoft wouldn't want the beta framework floating about. Then again, I'm assuming they understand what the .NET Framework is.

“Microsoft are attempting to lock students in, probably even before they hit tertiary education.”
Again, obviously not familiar with the culture. Students have been using the full Visual Studio in a lot of programs, and getting it cheap. That certainly won't change. Oddly enough, I think the guy that made this comment was the same guy that said you can change-up platforms at any time. Lock-in... sure, that's it.

“Free compilers, what a concept?”
Yeah, one we got like four  years ago.

“I'm still aghast at the number of developers who think that they need Visual Studio, or any IDE for that matter, to develop in .NET/Java/whatever.”
Amen. I want to go back to the days of DOS. I don't need a mouse either. Batch files rule. In fact, I think I'll brush up on my assembler because that's what real programmers do. I've got all the time in the world and my clients understand if it takes a long time to build a product.

Normally I don't even entertain this kind of nonsense, but it's like me trying to talk about biochemistry (I would have no idea what I'm talking about). Enjoy the laughs. I'm sure you've got to get back to writing great software.

Posted: Jun 29 2004, 08:17 PM by Jeff | with 15 comment(s)
Filed under:
The good and slightly not good about Visual Web Developer Express

Let me start by saying it's great to see the excitement bubbling out of Microsoft from the various teams involved with the new Express products. As a customer, I think you can only feel good about the pride that 'Softies are putting into these new bits. After using the pre-beta builds of VS 2005 now for about three or four months, I was already impressed.

I first heard about the low-cost IDE's I think in March. My first thought was, “It's about time,” because the barrier of entry into the Microsoft programming world has always been non-affordable tools. I thought I'd give the Visual Web Developer Express beta a look-see to see just what the “hobbyists” and “n00bs” could do.

The first and biggest surprise was that full Intellisense is maintained, just as it is in VS 2005. Outstanding! The “code-beside” model is leaps and bounds ahead of the old-style code-behind, and it's almost OK to use the inline code blocks now. Almost...

What I don't like is that you can't do compiled class libraries. I guess this topic is near and dear to me because the focus of my book is to get people to harness the power of an object-oriented platform to build applications “right.” It's not that you can't write classes for use across the app (now the .cs or .vb class files go in the /code folder), but you certainly can't reuse them in compiled assemblies. I think that's kind of a bummer.

It seems to me that Microsoft struggled with how to position these products and what to include or not include. The upside of the product is that, without question, it's powerful and makes building Web apps easier than it ever has been, and normal people can afford it. My only beef is that it kind of allows developers to do things “old school,” something I've been trying to get people to not do via training and now this book. I think it's a philosophical concession to allow what isn't far from the old script days, but I do understand the business decision to allow it.

I don't think my issues will lessen the value of the new products, but it's certainly an area of concern. I guess the real test is to see if they revise the pricing on Visual Studio itself, as well as things like MSDN subscriptions. I've heard that might be a consideration as well. I know that personally I'd get a subscription again if it were under a grand.

Posted: Jun 29 2004, 07:29 PM by Jeff | with 1 comment(s)
Filed under:
Viewstate of the day: GDN

Here's today's crazy viewstate, brought to you by the GotDotNet.com home page!
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FjLWJhMGMtNDNjZS04YTc2LTQ0NTlkZTljMThkYTs+Pjs+Ozs+O3Q8cDxwPGw8T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hlLTU3ZWM1MjYxYmYwYzs+Pjs+Ozs+O3Q8cDxwPGw8TmF2aWdhdGVVcmw7Vml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LWIxMTgtNzNjMWYyNWU4NTg2O288Zj47Pj47Pjs7Pjs+Pjt0PDtsPGk8MD47aTwx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Posted: Jun 27 2004, 05:28 PM by Jeff | with 9 comment(s)
Filed under:
It's fun to be a .NET developer

It sure is fun to be a .NET developer. It's fun to be right from time to time as well.

Crap, I wasted my 100th entry on “performant” nonsense.

Posted: Jun 24 2004, 11:14 PM by Jeff | with 1 comment(s)
Filed under: ,
Invented word of the day: Performant

I love how someone in the programming community comes up with a word, then before you know it, the word is used more frequently than “the.”

Take “performant.” The implied meaning is some code or software that performs well. That's a pretty stupid implication when you think about it. All code “performs,” but that doesn't mean it performs well. It's kind of like talking about “performance” car parts, without “high” in front of it. Maybe the code should be called “high performance” instead of making up a word for it. 

Annoyed by its use (yeah, degree in English here), I looked it up. Not surprisingly, some dictionaries don't have the word. Those that do say it's a noun, a performer. No adjective there, sorry folks!

Should I tell all these people?

Could be worse, I suppose... there could be another stupid acronym. Crap, there already is... “HPC.”

Posted: Jun 23 2004, 11:15 PM by Jeff | with 2 comment(s)
Filed under:
I bought the wrong chipset

I bought the wrong chipset last night... a poker chipset. I'm fascinated by the game and would like to start playing, so I bought a $150 set of chips and a case. They're the good stuff, the heavy clay chips that make the cool noise, with an indestructible metal case.

First off, the cost. Yeah, I know that's steep, but this is nice stuff. It's actually not a selfish thing at all. The truth is that when I have people over as a guest at my house, I like them to have a good time. That's why our parties are held in such high regard. We buy good alcohol and food and try to be hospitable. I wouldn't want to go to a party where people are cheap, so why throw one on the cheap?

The second thing is that the game itself is interesting because it combines so many things I enjoy. There's the logic component, of course, something code monkeys can get into. There's the social aspect, seeing as how it's supposed to be fun. There's the psychological angle too, as you can learn a lot about a person by watching how they play.

I have to admit that the poker on TV inspired the interest in the game. Not the world series crap, but the celebrity poker. Career players aren't nearly as interesting to me, but the celebrities, famous as they might be, are just like you and me when it comes to poker. That's fun to watch.

I don't plan on having any high-stakes games or anything, but I look forward to having a little fun. Heck, maybe next time I'm in Vegas I'll even play a couple of hands.

Posted: Jun 23 2004, 10:45 AM by Jeff | with no comments
Filed under:
Browser-based HTML editing still in the dark ages

I was considering using FreeTextBox for POP Forums because my implementation is mediocre at best. Actually, it gets the job done, but it's an IE-only implementation.

Then it occured to me that the Mozilla and FireFox instances would probably generate different HTML. Sure enough, it is different. In fact, it's actual correct HTML, not the crap that IE generates. That's a good thing, but the down-side of this is that I need to learn to parse the HTML differently.

You would think that as common as the need to write HTML in-browser is that there would be some fantastic universal standard by now.

I guess I better start writing those unit tests...

Posted: Jun 21 2004, 07:52 PM by Jeff | with 4 comment(s)
Filed under:
Self-employment: One month later

It has been a month almost to the day that I declared my independence from The Man. So far, this is how it's going.

The primary focus has always been to concentrate on writing my ASP.NET book. I've got about five chapters done (by “done” I mean ready for editorial review by the publisher) plus the intro. Those are key chapters, and I'm waiting for some friends to get back to me to see how well received they are. The book is about a third done, and I have two months and a week left to finish it. No problem.

To learn the new ASP.NET v2 features, naturally it's helpful to apply them to a real project. To do that I've been working on the next version of POP Forums from time to time. I have a very long list of features and things that I'd like to add to it, to really “compete“ (if that's the word, since I offer it for free) with other products. I think as a programmer tool it's already among the best, if for no other reason than it provides a good tool for manipulating user information and roles (until Whidbey comes out). It's not perfect (requiring you to have global.asax to inherit my class instead of using an HttpModule wasn't a good idea), but it's at the core of all of my sites. Thousands of users at any given time and my CPU still doesn't break a sweat. I know it can be better though, and while I get nothing for all of the work, it's satisfying to know it's all me.

I had grand intentions of eating better and exercising, but the first part of June generally sucks because of my allergies so I haven't been motivated in those areas. It's the only time of year I have a problem, but they kicked my ass. Claritin helps, but in some ways just makes me uncomfortable in other ways. It dries me out.

The good news is that while I never felt “fat,” I always knew I was a little overweight. I dropped some pounds last December and I managed to keep them off while at my last contract job. Since going solo, I've dropped two more. I've had fast food perhaps four times this year. So while I'm still not eating my vegetables, at least I'm eating less crap. I'm feeling energized enough to start playing DDR again and bought a cool bike rack for the car.

The money thing is a little scary, but nothing to get really freaked out by, as I knew that cash flow would be somewhat negative for awhile. The good news is that online advertising has seen a slight rebound, as traditional branding campaigns (i.e., not cost-per-click) are starting to take hold. I'm planning to launch another site in the next couple of weeks, a port of an existing site for a new topic. If it can add even $500 in revenue a month quickly, life will be grand.

Consulting and freelance work doesn't interest me at the moment. It's something I'll want to get back into in the fall, but right now I'm enjoying getting up when I feel like it, working when I feel like it and enjoying the summer sun. I'm working hard, and it's hard to see the tangible results in the short-term, but it's all on my terms, and that's a great feeling.

So that's where I'm at today. I'm not pulling in the bling, but I am ridiculously happier and less stressed. I get into my grumpy fits of course (just ask Stephanie), but I'm trying to get to a place in my life where I fit into the general scheme of things. I think I'm finally getting closer to that place.

Posted: Jun 21 2004, 06:03 PM by Jeff | with 1 comment(s)
Filed under: ,
More Posts Next page »