Friday, August 22, 2008
Just read that Red Gate are taking over development of Reflector from Lutz Roeder.

Reflector is one of the best .NET development tools, and it is awesome that Lutz has provided it free for so long. I have learnt a lot from playing around inside that UI, and it has helped me out of many a pickle.

Red Gate have a pretty good track record of producing great software (SQL Compare is awesome!), and it is cool that they are giving back to the community by developing and enhancing Reflector going forward. I'm looking forward to seeing what they do with it!


posted on Friday, August 22, 2008 12:55:31 AM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Thursday, August 21, 2008
Many years ago in late 2002, I spent quite a few hours playing around with Rotor, the Shared Source CLI implementation.

Back then Rotor was the easiest way to get a peek at how the .NET runtime and supporting libraries might have been implemented. Not everything was there, and that which was there wasn't guaranteed to function in exactly the same was as the shipping CLR, but it let you look at the C# and C++ source code that made things happen.

I played around with the Gyro patch half-heartedly, but by the time the v2 release of SSCLI came out, my thirst was adequately quenched by Reflector so I never really got into the genericised version.

I didn't read Stutz, Neward and Shilling's Shared Source CLI Essentials book (sorry guys!) but it did sit on my wishlist for a while.

Now Ted Neward and Joel Pobar are self-publishing the sequel to the book, and will be giving away the electronic version of it through the Microsoft site.

I have had a brief skim through the draft, and it's a CLR geeks heaven. I'm looking forward to curling up with it some time in the near future.

Check it out: Shared Source CLI 2.0

I believe Joel is at TechEd Australia next month - make sure to go along to his F# talk if you're there.

posted on Thursday, August 21, 2008 3:00:47 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Wednesday, August 13, 2008
We've finalised the speakers for Code Camp on 31 August -- and I'm very happy to report that we have some great local and international speakers coming along to present. I thank them in advance for volunteering their time to prepare and present to us.

  • Owen Evans from Xero will be talking about the ASP.NET MVC project
  • Jonas Folleso a Senior Consultant at Capgemini and a Microsoft Regional Director for Norway will be taking us through Silverlight from a developers perspective
  • Robert Fonseca-Ensor from Datacom Systems Limited will be talking about Test Driven Development and Dependency Injection
  • Scott Hanselman, Community Liaison and blogger from Microsoft will be talking about Dynamic Data
  • Ivan Towlson from Mindscape will be presenting a session on Thinking in WPF

As you can see, we've got a wide variety of sessions, from general development techniques, to web and desktop technologies. We haven't completely finalised the ordering of the sessions, but as you'll see on the Code Camp website, we're running from 9am till 6pm, and will be providing a free lunch and afternoon tea courtesy of our sponsors.

We also have a number of lightning talks which will feature a wide range of different topics, from technologies such as WCF, to products, and to communities around NZ. If you're keen to be involved in presenting a lightning talk (or have suggestions for topics), read my previous post.

I'm looking forward to it. Sign up now and I'll see you there!


posted on Wednesday, August 13, 2008 5:32:46 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Wow, I'm so proud that we've been selected as one of the top 10 Application UIs by the esteemed Nielson Norman Group in their latest report.

I haven't read the report yet, but we got a good writeup in the Alertbox article:
But Xero might be a more interesting example, simply because it targets the traditionally dry domain of accounting. One of its main features lets users automatically reconcile bookkeeping entries with bank account transactions. As a match is made, the 2 matching entries are removed from the list of stuff to be reconciled. Users compared this interaction to playing Tetris and described it as fun and addictive. Come on, making accounting fun? That's an award-winning design.
I'm not responsible for our look, or even for implementing it in code, but I'm very proud to do the behind-the-scenes work on Xero helping to wire it together. It's great that our application is being recognised as having a great user interface... well done to our design team for corralling everyone's ideas together into something that is fun for our users.


posted on Tuesday, August 12, 2008 10:14:45 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
Wow, the places for the Devt Code Camp are filling up fast! We already have more registrations than the size of the room, which means that we now have to start thinking about what to do once we go past our safety buffer!

Lightning Talks

Something new we're doing this year is taking the Lightning Talk concept that works well at user groups, and bringing it to Code Camp.

A lightning talk is a 5 minute slot to talk about something -- getting to the point is the important thing.

Are you interested in a 5 minute presentation in front of more than 200 of the most switched-on .NET developers in NZ?

Topic suggestions are:
  • Open source or free projects you work on or use, and the cool features that mean we should check it out.
  • A hot new technique you've learnt in VB, C#, Visual Studio etc.
  • Come and work for my company because...
  • I run a user group or coffee group, you should come along because...
  • I'm a software vendor, and 5 minutes is all I need to sell some copies...
  • Or perhaps even something humorous?
I'll give priority to talks that aren't commercial, unless you are a Code Camp sponsor, but it's also cool to find out about cool commercial stuff going on around New Zealand so I'm hoping some of our cool ISVs and tool vendors will present.

If you're interested, please contact me. The way I'll run it is to have a single computer only, and any PowerPoint slides must be pre-loaded onto it. If you don't need slides, then that's okay.

posted on Tuesday, August 12, 2008 12:58:50 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Tuesday, August 05, 2008

I got myself into helping out with another Code Camp.

This year we're having a Developer Code Camp again the day before TechEd in Auckland, from 9am till 6pm on 31 August 2008.

View the site, sign up and come along. It would be great to see you there!

I'll probably write up the titles, sessions and speakers later on when things firm up a bit more.


posted on Tuesday, August 05, 2008 7:04:55 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]

Dear Apple,

When you create your annoying marketing emails, please remember to edit them after copying the great American deals and converting them to less-great NZ deals.

This one came today. In my inbox it says June 15. After loading images, Sept 7:


...Became this

That wasn't too bad -- after all, who cares if Apple don't know when Fathers Day is? (Apart from fathers who want gifts :)

But this one from a few months ago was more annoying:


...Became this

Now that's a bit more annoying. When I viewed the email in my inbox (with images turned off), I thought I was being offered a special deal of $49. But no, switching on images showed that actually it wasn't such a special deal at $75.

So, dear Apple. When you copy and paste the excellent US deals into an email, don't forget to change the ALT text of the images after you replace them -- it gets shown in peoples email clients if they have images turned off, or they hover over the image with their mouse.


posted on Tuesday, August 05, 2008 6:56:28 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]