Monday, November 24, 2008

The Security Development Lifecycle website has been updated, and they have launched a cartoon:

http://www.bakingsecurityin.com/

image

You can follow the adventures of Kevin and how he transforms into Kevlarr (presumably while learning to write secure code).

They've got an RSS feed for the comics: RSS (although strip 2 didn't work in the RSS for me, so you might want to go to the site)

posted on Monday, November 24, 2008 7:46:04 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Saturday, November 15, 2008

Next Wednesday we've got Chaks introducing us to Microsoft .NET Services, which are a set of building blocks provided by Microsoft in the upcoming Azure platform that will help you build your cloud computing applications.

The meeting will be held at Xero, starting at 6pm (details below). Please RSVP to kirkj@paradise.net.nz so we can make sure there's enough pizza for all!

Title: Microsoft .NET Services
When: Wed 19 Nov 2008, 6pm
Where: Xero, Level 1, 98 Customhouse Quay, Wellington (above Xero)
Presented by: Chakkaradeep Chandran

Microsoft .Net Services is a part of the recently announced Microsoft Azure Platform.

What does Microsoft .Net Services provide?

Microsoft .Net Services consists of three main components:

  1. Service Bus
  2. Access Control
  3. Workflow Services

They provide a hosting platform where you can develop connected, peer to peer applications that can speak to each other without considering the other complexities such as firewall rules and NAT etc,.

Chaks will cover these three components of .NET Services, and how you can use them in your applications.

Pizza and beer provided. Please RSVP to kirkj@paradise.net.nz

 

User group meetings are open to anyone to attend. Hopefully we'll see you there!

Kirk

posted on Saturday, November 15, 2008 9:04:15 AM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]

Well that's good news: Server Core changes in Windows Server 2008 R2

Server Core will soon allow ASP.NET and PowerShell to be installed as options. They've partitioned the .NET framework and only install those parts that are needed (presumably to remove those parts that depend on the UI). I haven't seen any details, but I expect that things in the System.Drawing space may not be there either.

This is good news for people with a farm of web servers, and also for those that want better management of their server core installs.

Kirk

posted on Saturday, November 15, 2008 8:45:06 AM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Friday, November 14, 2008

I was pleasantly surprised by this.

I'm kind-of addicted to buying books from Fishpond. Part of it is because they're the best online bookstore in NZ that I've found, and part of it is all of these annoyingly good specials that they email me.

At the bottom of the latest shipping notification email (for my Framework Design Guidelines book, yay!), was this:

image

I was feeling happy at the book being shipped, so I thought I'd follow the link :)

At the end of the link was an extremely simple evaluation form:

Simple evaluation form

Only one click to answer, either Yes or No, no big survey.

Following that, this:

$5 coupon

A $5 voucher, for a single click. That's a good way to say thank-you for helping them improve their service, and really shows that they value the feedback.

Pleasantly surprised :)

Kirk

posted on Friday, November 14, 2008 5:46:00 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [1]

There's two handy Visual Studio features that you can't customise through the Tools -> Options settings.

Guidelines

This allows you to have a little dotted line that reminds you that your code is getting too long:

image 

Under [HKEY_CURRENT_USER]\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\9.0\Text Editor create a string value called Guides, and put a colour and the column position(s) that you want guides to appear at (e.g. Guides = RGB(128,0,0) 79, 119)

(from http://blogs.msdn.com/saraford/archive/2004/05/05/257953.aspx)

 

MRU Tab Ordering

Keep your most recent files at the left of your tab channel, rather than ordering them in the order that the files were opened in:

image

Under the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\9.0 key, you can create a DWORD UseMRUDocOrdering = 1.

(from http://blogs.msdn.com/saraford/archive/2008/10/09/did-you-know-you-can-keep-recently-used-files-from-falling-off-the-file-tab-channel-331.aspx)

 

Cheers,

Kirk

Previous tips:

posted on Friday, November 14, 2008 5:31:22 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I had fun doing the tips'n'tricks talk in Christchurch today. Most of the keyboard shortcuts I showed are in this post of mine from a few months ago, where I have compiled the C# and VB equivalents: Visual Studio Tips n Tricks

The free plugins to Visual Studio that I recommended were:

There's also a cool File Explorer plugin for Visual Studio by the guys from Mindscape: VS File Explorer

I also have a series of other Visual Studio tips on this blog, as well as some C# tips. Subscribe to my RSS to hear more!

Kirk

Previous tips:

posted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 8:10:17 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [4]
 Saturday, November 08, 2008

We've gone offline for an upgrade, and put a webcam in the office so you can see us work:

image

A little bit of fun with Craig acting for the camera :)

Kirk

posted on Saturday, November 08, 2008 11:08:32 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hi,

Many thanks to those who came along to our PDC Fireworks session last night. I hope you had an interesting time hearing about what's coming on the horizon, and that your families enjoyed meeting your geek friends!
A huge thank you to our speakers who presented on such a wide range of topics in a limited time. If you want to find out more or watch any sessions from the PDC, you could visit the Channel 9 PDC site, or visit the blogs of the presenters:

Also, a big thanks to those who helped set up and tidy up the room. Great job!

The .NET user group meets once or twice monthly, usually on the first and third Wednesday of the month. If you'd like to go on my mailing list for upcoming user group presentations, please email me.

If you're interested in the Wellington Sharepoint User Group, or the Wellington SQL User Group, make sure you follow the links to sign up to them.

Upcoming Sessions:

There's a few events coming up in Wellington that are free to attend:

Wed 19 Nov, 6pm - Microsoft .NET Services with Chaks Chandran [.NET User Group]

Microsoft .Net Services is a part of the recently announced Microsoft Azure Platform. What does Microsoft .Net Services provide ?

Microsoft .Net Services consists of three main components:

  1. Service Bus
  2. Access Control
  3. Workflow Services

They provide a hosting platform where you can develop connected, peer to peer applications that can speak to each other without considering the other complexities such as firewall rules and NAT etc,.

Venue: Xero, Level 1, 98 Customhouse Quay, Wellington

Please RSVP to kirkj@paradise.net.nz

Thurs 13 Nov, 1:10-5pm - MSDN Unplugged [Microsoft]

This free half day event, organised by Microsoft, sees JD Trask and myself talking on WPF, Silverlight and Visual Studio. More info here.

Sat 6 & Sun 7 Dec - SQL Pass Community Connection [NZ User Groups]

A free, all day event focussed on SQL and related technologies. Overseas and NZ speakers. Find out more at the event website.

Wed 3 Dec, 6pm - Overcoming your web insecurity [.NET User Group]

In this hour-long session, I'll be introducing you to some of the threats your ASP.NET website will face, and give you ideas on how to protect your users, company and yourself. This applies to public facing and internal (intranet) applications.

RSVP details will be sent out to the announcement list closer to the date.

 

Thanks for reading this far!

Kirk

posted on Thursday, November 06, 2008 9:47:02 AM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]
 Sunday, November 02, 2008

I got a chance to watch a few great presentations at Code Camp yesterday:

Ivan Towlson - Thinking in WPF:

I've seen Ivan's talk already at the Auckland Code Camp, but I got a few new nuggets of WPF goodness out of it. It was fun watching people get up on the stage and act out the named parts pattern :)

John Rusk - Linq to SQL:

This was a really interesting dive into the good and bad of LINQ to SQL, and some of the stuff John and his co-workers have had to do to work around and extend it, including checking that the model matches the database, in memory save points and model inspection.

It sounds like they've got some really cool code that can be re-used by others -- now we just need to convince them to release it!

Jeremy Straub - IIS 7 Extensibility:

Jeremy gave a short talk about how easy it is to automate IIS administrative tasks, such as creating websites and setting properties, and showed how to do so from within C# and PowerShell. It's really nice how much you can do programmatically against IIS7.

Baroon Anand - Team Foundation Server:

Baroon's talk introduced TFS, and went through some of Intergen's customisation and uses of TFS within their business process and projects. A good overview with some interesting nuggets on running projects through TFS.

Lightning Talks:

I was being the dastardly timekeeper for the lightning talks which was a fun task. There were about 7 lightning talks @ 5 minutes each, on a variety of topics from C# to paper prototyping, solving real-world problems and PDC / Azure announcements. Well done to everyone who presented, there's at least an hour of content from each of that I'd love to hear!

Matt Smith - Productive Sharepoint Development:

Matt is a great presenter, I really enjoyed his talk. It was similar to his TechEd talk (which I didn't go to), so the above link will help you out if you want some tips on how to be a productive developer using Sharepoint (summary: ask your boss for a fast PC, and make your build/deploy as quick as possible).

A bunch of cool tools and tips punctuated by good humour :)

Kirk Jackson - Overcoming your web insecurity:

I can't really comment much on this talk, except to say that there's more stuff in the slides if you're interested :)

David Bales - Scrum Game:

This was a lot of fun. Rather than teaching Scrum via PowerPoint, David had us organised into groups trying to complete tasks by running a series of sprints. I think everyone in the room had a better understanding of the Scrum process and a little idea about the challenges you come across by the end of it.

Clarus is running a Scrum course in December.

 

Of course, there were other presentations through the day (there were two streams), so I didn't get along to all of the great Code Camp presentations. Well done to all of the speakers for great content, and to the organisers for a really interesting day!

Kirk

posted on Sunday, November 02, 2008 10:35:26 PM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]

I had a fun time presenting my talk at the Christchurch Code Camp yesterday. I only fell off the stage once!

A collection of urls:

Here's the sanitised version of my slides:

posted on Sunday, November 02, 2008 7:55:50 AM (New Zealand Standard Time, UTC+12:00)  #    Comments [0]