Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Generally, I don't like to repost content from other blogs, but I saw this on "The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs" and I thought it was funny enough to pass along:

Thanks Fake Steve!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Code Camp

The Dayton/Cincinnati code camp was held today. Alexei, Arnulfo, Monish and I attended.

The Journey

Arnulfo's job apparently was to organize logistics. His "plan" was to have Monish and I meet him at the office at 4:30 (AM) and then go pick up Alexei on the way.

Arnulfo overslept. After hanging out at the office till about quarter of five, Monish called and woke him up. So we were a bit late. We then drove past the meeting point for Alexei, so more back tracking. We used Google maps to get us to our destination, but that was difficult. Many of the side streets we had to take between the freeway and the event were not labeled, or not labeled well. But we eventually made it.

1st Session: Practical Caching in ASP.NET 2.0 - Joe Wirtley

This was an OK session. We are going to be doing some data caching on my current project. The speaker talked a bit about static page and user control caching to. You don't have access to Session from cached user controls, so he showed us a work-around.

2nd Session: Layouts, Styles, Templates in WPF - Drew Robbins

I know Drew has given this presentation a few times, but I haven't seen if for over a year and half. I have to say that WPF is more impressive than its first incarnation. I kind of blew it off at first, thinking it was a neat toy, but seemed like a lot to go through, especially since it wasn't really on the horizon as far as being deployed. But, Drew showed some cool demos so I'm interested. I'll have to pick up Petzolds book and play with it.

3rd Session: Extending ASP.NET with Http Handlers and Modules - Joe Brinkman

This was a pretty interesting session about writing (you guessed it) custom Http Handlers and Modules. The speaker explained the page life cycle, and how sometimes it's more efficient to have a handler respond as opposed to an aspx page. He also showed some cool ways to use Modules to handle some authentication, compression and string substitution. The speaker was from DotNetNuke, and that framework uses several of these, so I'll download it and give it a look.

4th Session: Intro to XNA - Bill Steele

This one was for me. The fact is I haven't made much progress on my project. I downloaded and setup the XNA development tools, and fired up the starter project, but I wasn't really sure what to do after that. There is a little documentation for XNA, but if you don't have experience writing games, it's kind of hard to get your head around. This was a big help. I also learned that the next rev of XNA will be out next month, and that the new version will work with Visual Studio (the current version requires C# Express). I've went ahead and downloaded the framework and Anim8or (the recommended asset creation tool) but will probably wait until next month to avoid having to install Express.

5th Session: Balancing WCF Performance and Security - Darrell Hawley

This was a pretty helpful session that compared and contrasted the differences (both for performance and security, as per the title) of the various WCF bindings. There were some pretty marked differences. It was pretty helpful in determining which binding which binding to use where. One of the big strengths of WCF is the ability to have multiple bindings for the same service AND change these via configuration. So, you can expose your service via WS to the outside world, which provides interoperability, and TCP internally, which provides speed. There wasn't time to go into MSMQ, so I'm going to play with that a little on my own and how it "stacks" up.

6th Session: Improve Your Testing With Open Source Test Tools - Jim Holmes

I already use Team Test for most of my testing needs. Obviously, as good as Team Test is, it doesn't do everything, so I decided to check this out and see what was out there that was new and cool. There were a couple standouts. The first one, Fitnesse, is (according to their website) a tool to compare customer's expectation to the actual results. I also am interested in Pairwise, which is a case generation tool that helps test situations where conditions overlap. Watir looked kind of interesting as well. It basically does the same thing (on the surface) that Team Test’s Web Test does, but where a web test simulates web interaction by comparing query strings, Watir allows you to actually interact with specific fields on a web form. I don’t know what it will really offer that web tests don’t, or if it’s simply a better tool, so I’ll have to check it out. The only “drawback” is that it is Ruby based. I don’t have anything against Ruby per se, but I’d like to not in stall anymore stuff on my computer than I really have to.

All in all it was a great code camp and I got a lot of information and ideas out of the session. I’ll definitely be back next year, and would encourage everyone else who is able to also attend.

Thanks to everyone and CINNUG and The Dayton .NET Developers Group for putting on a great event!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

An Open Letter…

Dear Asshole who broke my car window, tore out my dashboard and took my stereo along with the seven CD's under my seat,

On the off chance you are actually reading this, I just want to let you know what a pain in the ass you caused me today.

Because of your actions:

  • I was made to wait in the parking garage on one of the windiest days in recent memory waiting for the police
  • I was forced to listen to the angry ranting of your other victims (three more in all) as they started to trickle into the garage as the work day ended
  • I will have to go to the police department tomorrow and get a copy of the report
  • I had to go out of my way to the Kroger in German Village and buy clear shipping tape to fashion a "temporary window"
  • I had to drag my laptop through said Kroger, because you've shown me that I cannot trust people enough to leave anything of value in my car, apparently even if it is part of the car, which puts me in a bit of a bind
  • I had to file an insurance claim
  • I had to miss the .NET user group meeting
  • I will have to take time off of work tomorrow to take my car in for repair
  • I will have to pay a $500.00 deductible
  • I will have to rent a car for about a week and a half
  • I have already had to recount the story seven times to seven different people, and none of my friends, family or co-workers even know it happened yet, so I'm looking forward to having to tell the story about a dozen more times
  • I have been tempted to drop the "f-bomb" on this blog, which I promised myself when I started it I would never do

I know this probably doesn't mean much to you. You obviously don't care about anyone. Given that the best you seem to be able to do is stealing, I'm guessing that you really don't care about yourself either. And that's fine; frankly I don't care about you either. Aside from my anger, and wishing you were there so I could throw your ass over wall to the street seven stories below, you are worthless to me. I imagine you are pretty much worthless to everyone in your life as well.

So, what's it like being someone who contributes nothing to the world? If you died would anyone care? Or even notice? Maybe your fence? I'm guessing you are doing this to purchase drugs, so maybe your dealer? But then I imagine that there are hundreds of you on the street, and when you are gone you will be easily replaced. Maybe the next one will be a little taller or shorter. Maybe a little thinner or fatter. But I'm guessing no one will notice that someone has even taken your place. What's it like to be so worthless that you essentially interchangeable with any other loser out there?

What do your parents think of what you do? Do you even have parents? Are they just as bad? Or do they simply not care?

In any case, I'm sure that in the rare moments that you do think about your "life" and how little you've made of it, I'm sure you blame someone, anyone except you for the situation you are in. Your parents, the police, society, schools, whatever. But deep down you must know that's all bullshit. Even if you don't want to face it, only you are responsible for the waste your life has become.

Can you even look at yourself in the mirror? I wouldn't be able to.

The items you stole are just "things" and I will easily replace them, like you are easily replaced. Actually, some of those CD's were imports, so they will probably be harder to replace than you would be.

As for the CD's, I can't imagine you are going to fence them. You CAN'T expect to get much money for them. Even at a used CD store you may get $10.00 for the lot. Did you take them for personal use? I somehow doubt that you are sophisticated enough to enjoy CD's by Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree, Mozart, Rush or my CD of "Great Moments in Italian Opera."

As for the CD/MP3 player, it was about five years old, and not state-of-the-art when I did buy it USED. By the way, the MP3 feature hasn't worked for years. While I'm sure you are a drug user, I admit I have no idea what you choice of drug is, but I hope the $0.50 you get for it buys you enough junk to make it worth it.

But, at the end of the day you are a worthless scumbag who probably won't live to see 30, not that you appear to have anything to look forward to. Oh well. I can only take solace in the fact that I am a better person than you, and that is something you can't ever take away from me.