Archives / 2006 / May
  • Paintball and Military Training (or Top 10 Reasons PaintBall is better than MILES)

    I went out for my first experience with paintball this weekend with some friends.  We had about 30 people, probably 2/3 of them teenagers, there at one of the players’ family’s country homes, with about 50 acres of land, probably half of that wooded.  We started the day off with a few rounds of Speedball, which I was not terribly good at and which has really no resemblance to any military tactics, at least at the level at which we were playing.  A bunch of the kids were really into it, but most of the adults decided pretty quickly that it was pretty much an exercise in how quickly one can burn through paint and CO2, preferring to play woodsball, which is … more

  • Expression Web Designer Is Here

    CTP 1 of Expression Web Designer is now available for download.  Please see the announcement from Devindra Chainani, Group Program Manager, Expression Web Designer, for more details and download links. Expression Web Designer is a new Microsoft tool for creating professional looking web sites which is compatible with ASP.NET. more

  • Code Query Language you ever wanted to run some metrics on your code base, to try and gauge its quality or to try and find bad practices?  There are some tools out there for such static analysis, such as FxCop and the built in tools in VSTS, as well as SSW's regular expression based Code Auditor Tool.  However, another approach, using a Code Query Language, seems to have a lot of potential.  You can read the specification here: For instance, one issue I have with some code analyzers is that they complain about generated code that was produced by third party tools that I have no control over.  With CQL, excluding such … more

  • Practical .NET2 and C#2

    I recently had the opportunity to skim-read Practical .NET2 and C#2 by Microsoft MVP Patrick Smacchia.  You’ll find the book’s table of contents and examples online at its website (linked from title), along with an impressive list of testimonials.  I would have to agree with what many other reviewers have noted – this is a very good comprehensive look at C# 2.0 and how to use it to work with the .NET Framework 2.0.  I have perhaps half a dozen C# books on my desk, including the language spec, but I think this book does away with the need for the others.  Now if I can just get it back from the guy who borrowed it off my desk… more

  • Atlas GeoTagging Tool

    DotNetSlackers has a new Atlas tool written by Alessandro Gallo that combines geotagging, Flickr images, and a mapping tool.  Pretty cool.  One of these days I will have to play with Flickr…   more

  • Assembly Hijacking Video

    RockyH has a great little video walkthrough called Assembly Hijacking showing how a bad guy can use a combination of SQL Injection and lack of strong named assemblies to do bad things to an e-commerce website.  Definitely worth watching and remembering. more

  • Beginning AJAX Book - Tech Edit Complete

    As of today I'm officially done tech editing Beginning AJAX, a book coming soon from Wiley publishing.  Amazon has a page for the book (pre-production) here.  The book includes information on writing your own AJAX framework, using several existing free AJAX libraries, and working with Microsoft's ATLAS framework.  It still has a few more steps to go through before it hits the presses but you should expect to see it in the next 2-3 months, I'd guess (Amazon says August 28, 2006).   more

  • Rebuilding Alienware M7700 with FastTrak RAID and Windows XP

    This is a note for myself and anybody else who finds themselves frustrated when it comes time to reinstall Windows XP on their Alienware laptop with RAID (this advice applies to more than just the M7700).  Basically, the behavior I ran into was that I would boot to the Windows XP CD and it would ask me if I had any drivers, press F6.  I did so and installed the FastTrak drivers using a USB Floppy drive I had to purchase six months ago the last time I had to rebuild the system (apparently the only way to specify these drivers is with a floppy).  Anyway, it founds the drivers fine, found the hard drive, asked me to format, etc.  I said yes, NTFS, go for it and it did its … more

  • PromptSQL - RedGate SQL Prompt

    I love Red Gate Software.  Their tools rock.  If you use SQL Databases, I highly recommend them.  I just saw that they recently bought Prompt SQL and will soon be releasing it as SQL Prompt.  You can download the SQL Prompt beta if you like. What is it?  Basically it provides Intellisense in Query Analyzer, something I've been wanting for years.  I was extremely disappointed that this feature did not make it into SQL 2005's set of tools.  It looks something like this in action: more

  • Kent Ohio

    I live in Kent, Ohio, which is a pretty small community in northeast Ohio, about 20 minutes east of Akron or 45 minutes south of Cleveland.  It's known to many as home to Kent State University (yes, that Kent State, which depending on whom you ask might be "the place where those students got shot in 1970" or "the university that had the pretty good basketball team a couple of years ago"). I grew up in Kent, and although I didn't think I would end up living here when I "grew up" that's pretty much what happened.  Now I'm pretty much here for the long haul, since my wife and I bought a great house and don't plan on ever moving, and our business's office is in Kent and will have its … more

  • Update to CS 2.0

    Yesterday we updated to Community Server 2.0.  So far it seems to be a lot nicer.  Please let me know if you have any problems with the new site. more