Scott Hanselman

Hanselminutes Podcast 90 - Dan Appleman

December 3, '07 Comments [7] Posted in ASP.NET | Microsoft | Podcast
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DanAppleman120x120My ninetieth podcast is up. In this episode, I chat with Dan Appleman. I first heard of Dan when I used his SpyWorks VBX to get VB3 on Windows for Workgroups to do all sorts of things it wasn't supposed to do. Dan still owns Desaware and does consulting on the side. He also created SearchDotNet, a human-edited Google Search specific to .NET development. He blogs infrequently at http://www.danappleman.com.

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Check out their UI Suite of controls for ASP.NET. It's very hardcore stuff. One of the things I appreciate about Telerik is their commitment to completeness. For example, they have a page about their Right-to-Left support while some vendors have zero support, or don't bother testing. They also are committed to XHTML compliance and publish their roadmap. It's nice when your controls vendor is very transparent.

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

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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Monday, 03 December 2007 22:11:46 UTC
I gotta say I strongly disagree with alot of the things that Dan says in your podcast. For one if he's not doing consulting professionally or full time then I don't think that he can properly speak for it.

I used to do some applications on a moonlighting basis when I didn't have to pay for office space, employees etc and let me tell you it's entirely a different world when once that change is made.

I agree with many of the criticisms of the large consultant shops. But the small shops suffer from many of the same issues.

He said something to the effect of
"What is your budget.. ok I can do something for that amount"

If you were asking someone that was shopping for cars if they would like it to go 225 mph and get 50 mpg? Of course they would.

There are things that are great that many clients may or may not be interested in paying for. Error logging, Unit Test, User Management, Support, Browser Compatibility, etc. Certainly if we all were looking out for their best interest we would do these things. However if they are trying to keep the project cost low then cuts have to be made somewhere.

If we were looking out for their best interest all of their web apps would work on phones, tivos and everything else for no extra charge. It's not charity it's business.

Also if any software shop were to use the "Here is what you are not getting approach" then they would eat way to many hours. If I were the customer that would imply to me that anything not listed as "not getting" but conceivably in the scope would be done gratis.

Good luck to him if he can stay alive with that model without extremely expensive support contracts.
Monday, 03 December 2007 22:24:22 UTC
I've been a big fan of Appleman's mustache for quite some time. I will enjoy listening to this one on my walk tonight.
Eric
Tuesday, 04 December 2007 17:32:03 UTC
Anyone want his WIN32 API with VB 6.0 book for FREE? (Who would pay anyway) Reply in a post.

I don't think I've ever opened it. I bought it because of his great API documentation but it turned out I didn't need to use the API anymore.
Chris
Thursday, 06 December 2007 20:55:06 UTC
My WIN32 API book now sits under my monitor at work to raise it to an acceptable level. It funny how that book was soooooooo great at one point in my life. Now it helps keep my neck muscles from being strained. :-)

APress books are pretty damn good. I hope Dan stays focused in that area IMHO.
Friday, 07 December 2007 18:57:28 UTC
Yeh, he actually made going through API fun. APress definitely publishes my favorite books.
Chris
Friday, 07 December 2007 19:50:20 UTC
[ I haven't listened to this podcast yet]

I don't know what he's up to lately but I haven't seen anything new from him for a loong time. His products at desaware.com are the same ones I have seen for years. Same website content too. His API book was invaluable duing my early VB days.
Abdu
Monday, 17 December 2007 06:29:43 UTC
Not being part of the VB world, I really didn't know who Dan Appleman was, but what he talked about was pretty much dead on for the most part. I agree with software specs need to list what they don't do as well as what they do. You need to have both to have reasonable expectations for what will be delivered.
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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.