Archives / 2010 / January
  • Azure Tip: How To Deploy a ZIP File to Windows Azure

    Last month, The Code Project ran an Azure contest and gave away several Amazon Kindles.  As part of the contest, which we hosted on Azure, we deployed a sample project with all of the necessary install files for getting started with Windows Azure.  It turned out to be slightly more difficult than expected to actually get the zip file deployed to the cloud, so I thought I’d post here in case others ran into the same issue. The issue isn’t related to ZIP files, of course, but to any content file that is added to a web project that isn’t a typical ASP.NET or web file type (e.g. .aspx, .gif, etc.).  For instance, if you simply add a .zip file to an ASP.NET web … more

  • Party with Palermo: MVP Summit Edition

    The Code Project is sponsoring the next Party with Palermo in a few weeks at the MVP Summit.  If you haven't already, sign up.  The cost is a nominal $5, just to try and keep the RSVPs accurate.  You can see who else is coming on the sign-up page (via EventBrite), so check it out.  Hope to see you there! more

  • Product Idea: Polarizing Plate Covers

    I’m one of those people that is always coming up with crazy business or product ideas.  The problem is always that there just aren’t enough resources to go after every idea, and I at least know that An Idea is Not a Business so at least I don’t pretend that maybe some day I’m going to capitalize on these things.  So on the way to CodeMash last week talking to Brendan about Mythbusters, apparently the show did an episode about trying to defeat traffic cams that take a picture of your license plate if you’re speeding.  I haven’t seen the show, but the end result was that most of the things people have tried (or businesses sell) to avoid these cameras simply don’t work.  … more

  • Windows Azure Pricing and Shared Hosting

    Windows Azure, Microsoft’s cloud computing platform, has recently gone into production and will begin charging customers next month.  You can keep up on Azure news and blogs at, a community moderated resource.  One of the promises of Azure is to treat application hosting like a utility service, through which one pays for what one uses, just as with electricity or telephone usage.  In fact, you’ll find that, like your phone plan, there are many options to consider when trying to estimate what an application will cost while running on Azure, but there are also many ways to test out an application for free (such as via MSDN Premium).  You can learn more about … more

  • Axosoft OnTime and Queues

    At CodeProject we’ve recently adopted Axosoft OnTime for our task, feature, and bug tracking needs.  We had tried a number of different solutions, and there was even some discussion of building our own (naturally), but in the end we’ve settled on OnTime, at least for the time being. OnTime breaks up items into Defects, Tasks, and Features by default, and you can establish fairly rich workflow rules for each of these that tie into actions (for example, there is a status for ‘Complete’ but also a workflow of ‘Complete’.  If you choose to use the workflow feature, you can make it so that when the item moves into the Complete state, various other things occur, like re-assigning it … more

  • Coding Katas

    Last week at CodeMash I helped host a Software Craftsmanship PreCompiler onWednesday afternoon.  I also helped organize a coding dojo for the event, but it was very last minute and didn’t have a lot of instructions for developers new to performing katas.  Having a room where people could get together and work through a problem together, perhaps in a new language, was still very worthwhile and totally in the spirit of CodeMash, so I’m not terribly disappointed.  But next year, based on Sara’s experience, I think we definitely can do a better job of explaining some of the terms used and ways that one can improve one’s skills in such an environment. Sara asked about what … more

  • Goals for 2010

    I recently wrote about how I did with my 2009 goals, now it’s time to set a few for this year.  Let’s start with two that didn’t go so well for me last year: 1. Get In Shape.  By the end of 2010 I will be under 200 pounds.  I will have achieved my Brown Belt in karate.  I will have biked 100 miles.  (I have a Wii Fit Plus now, so I’m sure I’ll also get better at many of the games on the system). 2. Blogging.  This year my goal won’t be for post quantity.  Rather, I want to increase my readership.  By the end of 2010, I will double my readership (RSS) from about 1250 now to 2500.  I will double December 2009’s 14,499 pageviews in December 2010 … more

  • Is Extreme Programming Dying? Is Agile Growing in Popularity?

    It’s interesting to compare the interest over time in various software development methodologies and practices.  Google Trends is a great tool for this, although it’s not without limitations, especially since so many programming terms have other meanings.  For instance, you can use it to visually show how interest in eXtreme programming has (sadly) been waning for many years now: Meanwhile, Scrum has been growing in popularity, but it’s difficult to do a fair comparison because scrum appears frequently in searches that have nothing to do with software development. Three inter-related development methodologies of interest to me are Test Driven Development, Agile Software … more

  • Personal Goals and Transparency 2009

    I find that if I commit to things in writing, they have a much higher chance of getting done.  And if I commit to them in writing on the Internet where everybody in the world can see it, even though I realize that nobody in the world cares, it gives me even more motivation to follow through.  So with that in mind, I’ve been posting my annual resolutions to my blog, and in 2009 I resolved to do the following: Get In Shape (190 pounds, Biking, Hiking).  Result: Fail (same weight as a year ago, went biking twice, no hiking).  Could be much worse, I suppose, but I’m not as fit as I’d like to be, as usual. Speak Locally (6 for year).  Result: Success.  In … more

  • Most Popular 2009 Posts

    If you’re one of my subscribers, you’re probably a software developer, or perhaps someone I know personally.  You might be surprised to find that many of the most popular posts on my blog in 2009 were not particularly developer-oriented.  According to Google Analytics, my blog had the following stats for 2009: 1. Codebehind Files in ASP.NET MVC Are Evil (8,320 pageviews) – Yes, I know it’s a cheap trick to call something evil to get people’s attention, but it also happens to work.  And thankfully when ASP.NET MVC shipped, it did so without codebehind files included with the views, at least in part as a result of this discussion. 2. Render ASP.NET … more

  • Whew! Made It Through 2009

    So, 2009 is over.  It was an interesting year, wasn’t it?  Talking to many of my friends and peers, especially entrepreneurs like other Regional Directors, I share a sense of relief that the year is behind us.  We made it.  For many, 2009 was a year with a lot of financial dread,  and often loss.  For me, the whole year was “ninjas on fire” – there never seemed time to take a breath, and it felt like I was having to run twice as fast just to stay in place. In fact, the global economic dip is certainly not over, but I know many who are looking to 2010 with hope, whereas a year ago nobody was sure where the bottom would be in the financial crisis.  Have a … more

  • Software Craftsmanship at CodeMash

    This week at CodeMash I will be co-hosting a Precompiler session on Software Craftsmanship with Brendan Enrick on behalf of the Hudson Software Craftsmanship group (@HudsonSC on twitter).  The Software Craftsmanship session will take place Wednesday afternoon on 13 January 2010.  This will be a chance to improve your skills as a software developer, regardless of your language preference or level of expertise, by working with your peers on a variety of exercises and katas.  We will be pairing attendees up, and each pair should have a laptop with a dev environment of your choice, so please bring along your laptops to the session.  From the abstract: Join your peers and … more

  • Unlock All Doors When Parking Honda Ridgeline

    I’ve had a Honda Ridgeline for a little over a year now and one of the absolute most annoying things about this vehicle is that when you drive, it locks all the doors, but when you stop, it only unlocks the driver’s door.  Now, this is independent of the child safety locks that are switch-activated for the back doors.  This is just a pure annoyance that makes me want to strangle some engineer somewhere about three times a week. So, it finally bugged me enough for me to figure out if there is a way to change this behavior, and it turns out there is (apparently it’s in the owner’s manual, but who reads those things when you have the Internet?).  The answer is pretty simple: … more