Scott Hanselman

Open Source versus Source Out in the Open

April 25, '06 Comments [8] Posted in DasBlog | NUnit | NCover | Nant | XML | Bugs
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An interesting point came up during my talk at Deeper In .NET on Saturday. (Korby Parnell has a flattering writeup as does Avonelle, BTW)

There's a difference between "Open Source" and "Source in the Open."

I've seen folks copy and paste directly from Google Groups and when prompted for a bit of code's origin they announce "It's Open Source."

Despite what many folks may have gleaned from some recent thinking out loud, I'm a fan of Open Source. Within the context of just .NET, I think that the (Windows Development) world is a much better place due to widely successful Open Source applications like NAnt, NUnit, log4net, NCover, Subtext, SharpDevelop, etc.

These projects are great places to learn how to code in .NET.

I made a comment at a conference once, where a lot of folks were badmouthing XML, complaining that the XML spec misses a number of important, albeit edge, cases and that it was generally a mess. Not meaning to be snarky (but succeeding) I introduced our next talk saying "I can't talk to the previous speakers concern about XML, but at Corillian we use success as a metric."

That's really what it comes down to. When you copy/paste/refactor/beg/borrow/steal someone else's code and put it into your application it's important that you know at least two things:

A. What it does.
2. That it works.

When one finds code in production (and you know you've found this yourself) with a link to a Google Group's thread embedded within the code's comments, you might want to pause a moment.

I'm much more likely to snarf an algorithm or technique from NUnit or SharpDevelop because I know those applications work and work well. They are successful by virtue of the fact that they are used. What they lack in Unit Tests they make up in sheer code coverage.

DasBlog has a number of nasty bugs lurking, some we know about, most we don't. However, it's tested every day on this blog and others. I know what it's good at and what it's not.

When an application is a trusted, used, successful "Open Source" Application, chances are it's code is more trustworthy than "Source in the Open."

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Speaking Schedule - 2nd Quarter 2006

April 25, '06 Comments [10] Posted in PowerShell | Ruby | TechEd | Speaking | XML | Web Services | Tools
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Just wanted to post about a few upcoming talks I've got:

  • Friday, April 28th, 2pm - Portland State University (Smith Memorial Student Union (SMSU) Room 236) - Monad PowerShell, Microsoft's new Command Shell
  • Tuesday, May 9th, 2006, 5:30pm - Pittsburgh.NET - Topic TBD
  • Just Added: Wednesday, May 10th, 2006, ~6:00pm - North Dallas.NET - Advanced System.Xml
  • Thursday, May 11th, 2006, 6:00pm - Dallas .NET - Essential Tools for the Effective Developer
  • Monday, June 12th, 2006, 5:30pm - (During TechEd!) - Beantown.NET - Essential Tools for the Effective Developer

I'm also presenting at TechEd with Patrick Cauldwell a session for the ARC track called "Dirty SOAP: A dynamic SOAP endpoint, how and why."

Here's our synopsis from the TechEd site. Sign up now so we know how many chairs to bring.

ARC310 - Dirty SOAP: A Dynamic Endpoint without ASMX - How and Why?
Speaker(s): Patrick Cauldwell, Scott Hanselman
Time: 6/13/2006 - 4:30pm-5:45pm
Session Level(s): 300
Not every large system in the wild can use .NET 2.0, ASMX and "Indigo". Often the real world isn't very pretty, and/or formal use of .NET ASMX Web Services doesn't lend itself to a particular solution. Corillian's software handles a quarter of the nation's retail banking online population with .NET. The system is built with a contract-first approach using WSDL and a custom binding to generate in-process service proxies. When it came time for Corillian to present their Operations as SOAP, we created a dynamic endpoint-WITHOUT ASMX. We then extended it to support POX (Plain Old XML). In this session, we discuss the architectural and design ramifications of managing a dynamic endpoint and how this decision will positively or negatively affect our move to WCF.

Additionally, John Lam and I will be giving a joint Birds of a Feather on Ruby and .NET and his brilliant RubyCLR Bridge one evening.

Hope to see you!

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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The Immediacy and the Remoteness

April 22, '06 Comments [6] Posted in Z | Coding4Fun | Movies
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Orb4Remote1Ok, you've sold me. I poo-pooed in the past, but I'm digging it today. I'm away from home and local news in the hotel I'm in is crap. I've got TVs and movies at home I'd like to watch.

Orb.com, while sporting the worst of user interfaces, is the bomb. It was obviously written by folks who know their server side. ;)

I've used BeyondTV in the past for this same thing, forwarding ports outside and auto-transcoding video streams, but the setup of ORB was so very easy and it just works.

I've got the Windows Media Center PC running over yonder in Oregon while I'm here in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in a hotel. I want to watch a show that the Media Center taped back home. I'm connected to the 'net via a Verizon Wireless Cellular Phone PC Card.

Orb detects my connection speed and transcodes the video to the level appropriate for my connection. (This can be overridden as well.) The quality of the video over this cellular connection is pretty sweet.

Orb3There's some kinks to be worked out around seeking within a stream, but this is a no-brainer: Microsoft, buy them, build it into Windows Media Center. (Of course, this is too niche and no one cares about remoting TV, right?)

Remote2

Other than BeyondTV (BeyondTV Link) what are the competitors?

Of course, an alternative to getting video from my house is to get it from the cloud. Why get my copy of a show when there's a cloud copy?

As an aside, being away is hard, but Webcams make it easier. Watching Z react to my voice over the phone is a blast.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Scott Hanselman, 11 Successful Large Projects, 3 Open Source Applications, 1 Collossal Failure

April 21, '06 Comments [48] Posted in Musings
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I noticed a resume come by recently from a person that included their name and email signature like this:

Joe Blow, MCSE, MCSE+I, MCSD, MCT, MCP

For me, this is a little off-putting. Kudos to folks who get certified. Certifications are great for the certifications section on your resume. They shouldn't go in the education section and shouldn't go after your name. I blogged about this three years ago, but I've got my mind around it now.

Folks go to school for 20+ years to put "PhD" after their name. I could go take a cert test now, but should it be displayed so prominently?

I used to chase MS Certs, got a bunch then realized that no one really cares.

What potential employers WANT to see is, do you go from 3 month project to 3 month project? Or are you the kind of person who stays at a job for a few years until you ship v1.0 or v1.5?

People want to know how many successful projects you've been on, not how many tests you can take.

I scored high enough on my high school SATs (like the O-levels for you non-US folks) but do I tell folks? Should I sign emails:

Scott Hanselman, 400 Math, 560 English (not my real score)? ;)

Scott Hanselman, 6 O's, 3 A's (for the UK folks)

What about:

Scott Hanselman, 143 IQ (not my real score)? ;)

Wouldn't these indicate to a prospective employer that I'm a decent writer and all-around thinker? Why is it socially inappropriate to publicly tout scores like these, but

If it's silly to suggest putting my SATs on my resume, why is

Scott Hanselman, MCSD, MCT, MCP, MC*.*

reasonable? Just my thinking...when I hire, having a cert means you have a capacity to hold lots of technical stuff in your head. Full stop.

I propose we sign our names like this:

Scott Hanselman, 11 Successful Large Projects, 3 Open Source Applications (it's not a crap idea), 1 Colossal Failure

Wouldn't that be nice? Sign your name, people.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Hanselminutes Podcast 14

April 19, '06 Comments [8] Posted in ASP.NET | Podcast | XML | Tools
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HanselminutesMy fourteenth Podcast is up. This episode is about code generation and some popular .NET codegen tools.

We're listed in the iTunes Podcast Directory, so I encourage you to subscribe with a single click (two in Firefox) with the button below. For those of you on slower connections there are lo-fi and torrent-based versions as well.

Subscribe to my Podcast in iTunes

Our sponsors are CodeSmith, PeterBlum and the .NET Dev Journal.

CodeSmith-SmallNOTE: Spread the word on this coupon discount, folks: If you use Coupon Code HM100 you can get $100 off CodeSmith Professional. We use CodeSmith here at Corillian and I'm a huge fan. It's intuitive use of ASP.NET-like syntax and powerful advanced XML techniques add up to immediate value to the dev. We've used it to code gen domain objects from XML, write sprocs and generate Data Access Layers. I recommend you give it a hard look. We'll be doing a Code Gen show next week. Feel free to spread the coupon code around, it's HM100.

As I've said before this show comes to you with the audio expertise and stewardship of Carl Franklin. The name comes from Travis Illig, but the goal of the show is simple. Avoid wasting the listener's time. (and make the commute less boring)

  • Each show will include a number of links, and all those links will be posted along with the show on the site. There were a number of sites mentioned in this episode, some planned, some not.
  • The basic MP3 feed is here, and the iPod friendly one is here. There's a number of other ways you can get it (streaming, straight download, etc) that are all up on the site just below the fold. I use iTunes, myself, to listen to most podcasts, but I also use FeedDemon and it's built in support.
  • Note that for now, because of bandwidth constraints, the feeds always have just the current show. If you want to get an old show (and because many Podcasting Clients aren't smart enough to not download the file more than once) you can always find them at http://www.hanselminutes.com.
  • I have, and will, also include the enclosures to this feed you're reading, so if you're already subscribed to ComputerZen and you're not interested in cluttering your life with another feed, you have the choice to get the 'cast as well.
  • If there's a topic you'd like to hear, perhaps one that is better spoken than presented on a blog, or a great tool you can't live without, contact me and I'll get it in the queue!

Enjoy. Who knows what'll happen in the next show?

Now playing: Newsboys - He Reigns

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.