March 2007 - Posts

22 March 2007
My Copy Of Professional Community Server...It's Here!
Got home from work today and found a pleasant surprise waiting for me: My copy of Professional Community Server arrived today! First thing to do is snap a shot of me with said book and send it over to Jose to be posted on ProfessionalCommunityServer.com . Then it'll take a tour around the country (and possibly England and Iran as well) to be signed by as many Telligenti/MVPs as possible. Cheesy? Perhaps. But in all seriousness, having been involved with CS since the early early betas, and then getting bestowed with MVP status...it's amazing to see just how far CS has come in the past 2 years (almost to the day actually) since 1.0 was released. In a few weeks CS will be in its 5th incarnation. Five releases in 2 years! Regardless, congratulations to Wyatt, Keyvan, Jose and Jim for getting this book written. I'm looking forward to some late night geek sessions getting to know CS even more. Thanks guys! Read More...
20 March 2007
Unable To Open URLs After Upgrading Windows XP x64 To Service Pack 2
I recently upgraded my Windows XP x64 installation to Windows 2003 Service Pack 2 (for those not in the know, SP2 for Windows 2003 also applies to XP x64 since they are the same code base) only to run into an issue where clicking on any urls/hyperlinks from desktop applications (Outlook, Word, etc) generated the following error: "General Failure. The URL was (hyperlink name)." I use Firefox as my default browser, and it was definitely related to SP2 as this problem didn't show up until after the upgrade. Google didn't turn up much, but my initial hunch was that somehow the windows shell had "forgotten" how to link http to the application used to handle that protocol. The fix is easy enough: Set IE as your default browser, then set the default back to your browser of choice. I didn't break out regmon to actually monitor what the underlying issue was, but all is good now and hyperlinks shell out correctly from my desktop applications. More than likely it's an SP2 + Firefox issue and the registry... Read More...
19 March 2007
Digweed, The Cinematics, Seattle, Horses...It's Springtime!
The weather is getting warmer, which can only mean one (of several) things: Lots of stuff to do in and around Charlotte! This coming Thursday (the 22nd) The Cinematics are playing at a local venue (they are kick arse...anyone in the area should definitely check them out, it's at Neighborhood Theatre over in NODA). In even better news, John Digweed is making a long overdue stop here in Cha-town over at The Forum on the 29th. I haven't been out to see any type of spinning talent since Zabiela stopped in almost 2 years ago . The Forum is generally a dreadful place overflowing with 20-something drunk college students with Britney or Justin blaring in the background. It's unfortunate because all shenanigans aside, it's not a bad venue...very well done decor, incredible sound system, good vibe. Seeing as tickets are fairly steep and the fact that it's on a Thursday, confidence is running high that a good time will be had by all. I haven't seen Digweed in eons. And finally in about a month's time... Read More...
16 March 2007
Save Internet Radio
Streaming internet radio is in trouble . The basic premise is as follows: On Friday March 2nd, the U.S. government (specifically, the Copyright Royalty Board, or "CRB") announced its determination of the royalty rates Internet radio webcasters must pay the owners of sound recording copyrights to license the music they play for the years 2006-2010. The owners of these sound recording copyrights are, in the vast majority of cases, recording companies ("labels"). While successful webcasters which have built loyal audiences can usually cover most of their costs from their revenue (and sometimes even make a little profit), these new rates will almost certainly destroy the Internet radio industry , as they amount to well over 100% of even the most-successful webcasters' online radio revenues . In other words, these fees are grotesquely disproportionate to any other expense a webcaster would normally face, and certain to bankrupt him or her. There are more details outlined in the link from above... Read More...
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09 March 2007
VB.Net Equivalent to C# 'As' Keyword -- TryCast
[Update] Apparently the TryCast keyword was introduced in VB 2005. That miffs me a little. Actually, that miffs me a lot since this project is on .Net 1.1 with no plans to move to 2.0 any time soon. [/update] I've been plagued blessed by inheriting a VB.Net app as one of my projects at work. I am not a language snob; I have nothing against VB (it's all IL in the end, right?) but sometimes it's a little slow going when I have to spend time looking up equivalent VB jargon for stuff that I inherently know in C#. The point is that I haven't done any coding in VB in 3-4 years, so C# just comes more natural and I spend a bit of time hitting the docs for VB syntax related stuff. I won't get into a long boring post about the benefits of the 'as' keyword in C#...the audience of this blog should already know when/where to use it. I needed the same functionality in VB so I set out to find the equivalent construct. Try searching for "C# as VB equivalent" and related derivatives and you'll get the phonebook... Read More...
04 March 2007
Required Reading -- Framework Design Guidelines
I've been slacking off a bit on my new Programming Paradigms category. Besides the usual "I have a new job and I'm busy" excuses, I've also been reading the daddy of all .Net Programming Paradigms books: Framework Design Guidelines: Conventions, Idioms, and Patterns for Reusable .NET Libraries by Krzysztof Cwalina and Brad Abrams (both of whom's blogs are required reading as well, go subscribe). I'll put it succinctly: If I had a team of developers, this would be a requirement for them to read. If I was bringing in a new team member, this would be sitting on their desk from day one. It is by no means heavy or mundane reading, though it does expect a thorough knowledge of .Net terminology. A lot of it is common sense, especially if you've been doing .Net development for a reasonable length of time...these are the same guidelines that the BCL teams follow when authoring the .Net framework so a lot of the basic stuff will be easily recognizable. But there are also some real gems in it, and... Read More...
04 March 2007
Your Database Administrator Is Your Best Friend
Let's face it...as developers we're expected to know a lot of stuff about a lot of things: Database design, application design, numerous languages and constructs, testing, debugging, etc. I don't know about you guys, but my head can only hold so much information before an implosion is imminent. Do yourself a favor and make buddies with a DBA near you (in my case, a guy 2 cubes over). More than likely they've devoted their entire careers to RBDMS of numerous varieties, and chances are even better that they know a few things that you don't about databases and how to squeeze out some extra performance from that slow running query you can't seem to get running quick enough, etc. I've always kind of envied the hard core database guys. It's not a job I'd want on a daily basis...too much stress for the big dogs, but most of the ones I've worked with always have a certain air of calm and tranquility about them. The ERM server could be on fire right down the hall, and they're as calm as Hindu cows... Read More...