mostlylucid

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November 2003 Entries

Back in a few days...

Taking a break away from computers for a few days...back in a week's time...

posted @ Saturday, November 29, 2003 6:27 AM | Feedback (0) |

Dino Esposito, one of the greatest .NET authors around has started a weblog!

Find his weblog here, for those who don't know, Dino is the author of the MSDN Magazine Cutting Edge column as well as a whole bunch of the best books around on ASP.NET (do a search at Amazon...then buy his books!). He's already made a couple of very informative posts (the control state stuff is really interesting). So, go check him out!

posted @ Thursday, November 27, 2003 8:54 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ ASP.NET Links ]

RSS Feeds...

Rob Howard asked how other people were doing RSS feeds, well this has been an issue for me recently, where I had to generate RSS feeds for existing objects. I used a little collection of classes to do this which I've uploaded here, here's a quick example of how I'm currenlty using these (names removed to protect the innocent) - note, these are not EXACT Rss, I added one field, xsdDate, 'cos I needed this for a transform (doesn't break readers having this extra bit though!), I'll update this later with a bit more info on these...essentially it passes through...

posted @ Tuesday, November 25, 2003 8:16 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET ASP.NET ]

Fantastic Web 'Widgets' from Matt Hawley

Found through a comment on Jon Galloway's blog (no relation), this site has a whole bunch of nice little client side controls including a particularly nice calendar control . Anyway, thought I'd post the link for future reference :-) - oh and here's Matt Hawley's blog (he wrote them)

posted @ Tuesday, November 25, 2003 5:39 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ ASP.NET Links ]

Yukon presentation - it rules!

Just been catching up on the PDC presentations, came across this one on Yukon, also, for an interesting perspective on why you should use SPs in Sql Server, watch the first 10 minutes! Man, I am so looking foward to Yukon reaching RTM; the architectures which this thing enables will be so elegant. UPDATE: As Jon Galloway pointed out, these are pretty buggy; the UI takes a bit of getting used to (or sucks to an incredible degree would be more accurate) - hint, don't click on the images for each track, click on the text. Worth persevering though!

posted @ Tuesday, November 25, 2003 5:23 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links SQL ]

Nested Data Bound List Controls in ASP.NET

This article (which pretty much constantly seems to be down for me at the moment) presents an interesting was to nest Repeaters etc... in ASP.NET, now I have never used this approach - and I have no idea what method is best (and I suck at writing so, I'll probably update this a LOT). What I generally do is use the OnItemDataBound event to bind child tables on to the nested repeater to do this you simple create an ASPX page with a repeater into which you nest a second repeater. In the first repeater, you use the OnItemDataBound event (ItemDataBound from the...

posted @ Monday, November 24, 2003 10:23 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET ASP.NET Code Snippets ]

Compile ASCX controls - so you no longer have to distribute the ASCX file!

I replied to someone's post saying that this was possible, well I finally got around to digging out the link, this article on CodeProject provides a little tool which will generate the C# source file representing your ASCX, pretty cool really!

posted @ Monday, November 24, 2003 2:18 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET ASP.NET ]

Internet Explorer Client Side behaviours - the magic of HTC

Reading this post from Stephen Sharrock reminded me about something I often overlook, the phenomenally powerful DHTML behaviours which IE supports using HTC files. The WebService behaviour for instance lets you pull information into your client from aribtrary web services, even without using HTCs, tools like xLoadTree provide the ability to load data straight into the client without forcing a postback. Before anyone comments, I know these are IE only - to be honest I don't care, when only 3% of users use anything other than IE, it seems a shame to ignore the functional improvements these kind of tools provide. Now, Mozilla does...

posted @ Sunday, November 23, 2003 11:22 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links Random ]

OK, enough moaning - I will now go one whole week without complaining!

Things like this kind of put my complaints about silly programming stuff into a bit of perspective!

posted @ Saturday, November 22, 2003 5:49 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links ]

Now this really bugs me...

Noticed a link in my referrer log from this post which comments on a comment I made in the whole Dyanmic SQL debate, this comment: Right. Because evaluating arguments based on their validity is too much work, so it's much easier to pick the "winner" by picking the side with the least vested interest. It apparently has nothing to do with the fact that Frans is, well, correct? Based on my comment taken out of context from this post: "To be honest I'm always a bit reticent to pay much credence to an argument on an approach to Data Access from someone who has...

posted @ Saturday, November 22, 2003 5:12 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links Random SQL ]

Problems with most blogs...

A comment from Rob Howard (I'll dig out a link later) go me thinking about problems with most blogs. Now, in my every day job I develop community applications, forums and all sorts of similar 'social software systems' one of the big keys to helping discussions to take place it giving a simple path to reach the discussion. Blogging systems are very different, giving exclusive prominence to the posts, with 'comments discussions' becoming secondary - which frankly is a bit of a shame! So here's the idea, the comments in blogs are essentially single threaded forums (with the initialising message...

posted @ Saturday, November 22, 2003 4:59 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .TEXT Random ]

Dumb piece of code...generate ordinals for numbers (th,rd etc...)

UPDATE: My code below of course has an error (I wrote it to test the perceptive skills of the community ;-)) anyway, Philip Reick commented with a more credible version: Hmm.. my bet is you came across it again after forgetting it because you threw it away. It would return the wrong result for inputs like "42", "123", "101", etc. I've done that a lot - I save code for some reason even when it's incorrect (like, its the vendor supplied code, or it has some trick in it), then a year later I find it and have to test it all...

posted @ Saturday, November 22, 2003 7:32 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET Code Snippets ]

What exactly is the point of ASPInsiders?

A discussion over on Paschal's site on the merits of the ASPInsiders cabal. I honestly don't see the point of this sort of group - what exactly does being a member mean to the community at large (apart from a pretty icon on www.asp.net forums)? Does membership imply that advice from these individuals carries an extra air of authority? I just don't get it...

posted @ Saturday, November 22, 2003 4:14 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Random ]

SQLJunkies...fine, fine blogging site

The SqlJunkies weblog site is really starting to fill out, it's fantastic to have so many SQL experts posting in one place! Oh, and I'm not just saying that because I agree with Donny Mack's views on SPs; well, partially, reporting is still a pain but I had discovered a good link to a version using the SP to generate the Dynamic SQL which seemed like a sound approach.

posted @ Thursday, November 20, 2003 10:10 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links SQL ]

Delegate.BeginInvoke() and memory leaks...

I'm getting increasingly involved in the world of Asynchrony and have been doing a bit of digging about into some of the pitfalls of multi-threading. I came across an interesting one today involving the use of BeginInvoke without a corresponding EndInvoke when using delegates...many books (including the one I'm using most right now, the excellent Programming .NET Components by Juval Lowy) mention that a good way to fire events asynchronously (i.e., not blocking) is to simple call BeginInvoke on the delegate - cool seems easy enough! Well, reading around a bit, I discovered this by Mike Woodring which contains this statement:...

posted @ Wednesday, November 19, 2003 6:54 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET Multi-Threading ]

Search gone for the time being...

Just updating the user control...back in a couple of days..UPDATE: Well, soonish...stupid dev machine is playing up...

posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2003 11:36 PM | Feedback (0) |

Feeling inadequate...

Everyone is posting pictures of their workspaces...I'm starting to feel more than a little inadequate...at work I use two monitors, at home just the one; would be two but I don't have the space...so just one and a KVM for accessing my other machines - now I know there was an article about how multiple monitors increase productivity - but frankly a bit more space would help more :-)

posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2003 8:23 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links Random ]

Great post on the homeless Children of Miami and their belief system...

This article is just an amazing read, the creation of a mythic landscape helping children to cope a little better with being on the streets - nabbed from Kuro5hin

posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2003 7:13 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links ]

Just noticed a flaw in the comments submission...stupid client side validation!

Fix it tonight...sorry for any inconvenience! If you want to submit a comment, enter any old thing in the search box for the moment...sorry!

posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2003 6:41 PM | Feedback (0) |

Stored Procedures versus Dynamic SQL - the old debate...Frans Bouma's take...

Frans Bouma really doesn't see the point of using Stored Procedures over using Dynamic SQL - so Frans, what's your take on such things as Indexed Views and User Defined Functions - which are essentially SPs but there's no equivalent for Dynamic SQL, so you're suggesting I should not use these any more? To be honest I'm always a bit reticent to pay much credence to an argument on an approach to Data Access from someone who has a vested interest (I know LLBLGen Pro supports SPs but it does have a strong bias towards Dynamically Generated T-SQL), kinda like MS...

posted @ Tuesday, November 18, 2003 5:12 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links Long & Rambling SQL ]

Memory Leak - solved - or 'When STAThread Goes Bad'

I posted a little while ago about an odd 'Memory Leak' I was having...well, after several days of trawling (and annoying Data Wanta who's excellent email component I was mistakenly blaming - sorry!), I finally found the answer! Turns out that the little [STAThread] attribute above the main class of the Comand Line app isn't so inoccuous after all - Dave pointed out this thread - apparently there's some sort of bug in .NET which can lead to what is effectively a leak when using multi-threading in a STAThreaded application!

posted @ Monday, November 17, 2003 11:40 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET Multi-Threading ]

.NET and Locked Files...

OK, can anyone explain why I can't check explicitly if I can lock a file before reading from it (i.e., check that no-one else is locking the file before trying to read from it). I'm using the marvellous FileSystemWatcher to wait for files being created in a directory before triggering a job - fine but there doesn't seem to be any easy way to check is a file is 'readable' before starting to read... Right now my way of doing this task is to attempt to read - and place a Read lock - on the file using the FileStream and catch...

posted @ Monday, November 17, 2003 9:54 PM | Feedback (4) | Filed Under [ .NET Help! ]

Longhorn install on VMWare 4.0

Well, went very smoothly - just got the DL off of MSDN subs downloads, mounted the iso as a disk for VMWare, fired it up in "2003 Server" config - installed perfectly! Seems to be better connecting using Terminal Services (RDP) - installing Whidbey now - gotta say, VMWare just kills VirtualPC right now...the current VPC doesn't event pretend to be able to run Longhorn, VMWare is pretty seamless, can't wait to try 2004 now that MS will be 'enhancing' it...I realise there's too many of this type of post around at the moment, sorry for adding to the swarf! UPDATE: ...

posted @ Friday, November 14, 2003 2:24 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Longhorn ]

Puzzled by memory usage...

I have this command line app, when running in a 'normal' command window, it uses a fair whack of memory (around 60mb), but the second I minimize to taskbar, the memory usage drops to around 10mb....anyone any ideas why??? UPDATE: Apparently this has to do with 'Working Set size", it's generally nothing to get concerned over...there's a pretty good discussion here on pretty much the same topic...

posted @ Wednesday, November 12, 2003 10:34 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET Help! ]

Occasional blogger....and a book suggestion...

I'm in one of my quieter periods when it comes to blogging right now...I have no particular excuse, I am just a bit phasal when it comes to such things. Anyway, I'll give a suggestion as to some reading material whilst you are deprived of my non-sensical mutterings - the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman, mid-way through the third book (the Amber Spyglass). This is a pretty amazing triology, I'd even say it approaches The Lord Of The Rings in it's scope - and, dare I say is even superior in many ways; not so much dumb signing or...

posted @ Monday, November 10, 2003 3:20 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Books ]

Name that lyric...

"Don't you think it's kind of funny, don't you think its kind of sad, the dreams in which i'm dying are the best I've ever had..."

posted @ Thursday, November 06, 2003 5:53 AM | Feedback (14) | Filed Under [ Random ]

What I've been up to...sending Bulk Email from ASP.NET / Command line / Schedule

Been a bit quiet of late, well basically I've been starting a new project at work - so I've been pretty much 24/7 in planning and building that app. It's a pretty cool little Bulk Email app (don't worry, for strictly opt-in mails :-)). A couple of the bits I've been using in this app are really useful in general, Mike Woodring's Custom ThreadPool, this is just a remarkably useful little class when you want to do Asynchronous operations from within ASP.NET (see this for more details on some of the places you may want to do this). Esssntially within...

posted @ Wednesday, November 05, 2003 12:53 AM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ .NET Links ]

Updater block and Windows Update under threat?

As I've posted many times, I'm a relative novice when it comes to all things WinForms, this post on Slashdot got me thinking, isn't 'Updating an Application over the Internet' exactly what the Updater Application Block and Windows Update do, not to mention every antivirus vendor on the planet. The US really has to get all this nonsense with software patents sorted before it grinds the whole industry to a halt!

posted @ Monday, November 03, 2003 4:55 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ Links Random ]

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