December 2011

Monthly Archive

The Morning Brew – 2011 In Review

Posted by on 31 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Today brings us once again to the close of another year, and as has become the tradition of The Morning Brew itís time to take a look back at some statistics for the year.

This year was a particularly significant year in The Morning Brew’s history, with the marking of the 1000th edition in early December. Due to work commitments (and me not pulling my finger out) the anniversary edition was not quite the glorious celebration I’d hoped for. I’ll try and do a bit better in a little over 2 weeks time when I hit 1024 (or 10000000000 in binary) – a number I’m sure the programmers in us all will feel is a more fitting one to celebrate.

Website and Feed traffic

Once again the year has seen steady growth in visitor numbers, both to the website and as subscribers to the RSS feed as can be seen from these two graphs.

2011 Visitors

2011 Subscribers

Visitor number jumped a few times during the year, generally in response influential members of the community tweeting about The Morning Brew (I’d link to the tweets but it seems that Twitter is ‘Down For Maintenance’ at the moment!) The other significant jump was in response to the 1000th edition where the post attracted a record 33 (very much appreciated) comments.

The Content

This year The Morning Brew has featured 3700+ links from almost 1000 different blogs, with the links spread over the three standard categories, Information, Software and Community. In addition, a couple of times this year Special additional categories have been drafted in for things like the January release of ASP.NET MVC 3, IIS Express, SQL CE 4, Web Farm Framework, Orchard, WebMatrix, the Developer Developer Developer 9 Conference in the UK, The Silverlight 5 beta release in April, Windows Phone 7.1 Mango in May, Windows 8 and Kinect SDK announcements in June, the //Build conference and all its announcements in September.

2011 Links by Section

This year’s top domains were:

  1. blogs.msdn.com – 942 links
  2. weblogs.asp.net – 236 links
  3. geekswithblogs.net – 170 links
  4. lostechies.com – 132 links
  5. coolthingoftheday.blogspot.com – 114 links
  6. www.codeproject.com – 99 links
  7. www.hanselman.com – 69 links
  8. www.nxtgenug.net – 62 links
  9. haacked.com – 62 links
  10. devlicio.us – 54 links

This year’s individual blog chart looks like:

  1. Greg Duncan – 114 Links
  2. Scott Hanselman – 69 Links
  3. Phil Haack – 62 Links
  4. Eric Lippert – 58 Links
  5. Mike Taulty – 48 Links
  6. Ayende – 41 Links
  7. Derick Bailey – 35 Links
  8. James Micheal Hare – 34 Links
  9. K. Scott Allen – 31 Links
  10. Jeff Blankenburg – 28 Links
  11. Scott Guthrie – 27 Links
  12. Pete Brown – 27 Links
  13. Mike Hadlow – 25 Links
  14. Dan Wahlin – 24 Links
  15. Jon Galloway – 23 Links
  16. Derek Greer – 21 Links
  17. Mike Ormond – 20 Links
  18. Ricardo Peres – 20 Links
  19. Laurent Bugnion – 19 Links
  20. Jimmy Bogard – 19 Links

In Conclusion

I’ve kept this year’s wrap up short, as I’m aware that with the 100th edition, the planned 1024th edition celebrations, and this post there will have been quite a bit of ‘retrospective’ this in a short space of time. I’d like to finish the year off by thanking all of the bloggers who’s content has been featured in The Morning Brew this year – without you guys writing great stuff I’d have very little to link to, it is much appreciated. I’d also like to thank the loyal readers – your passion for learning and interest in the content keeps me going.

My very best wishes for 2012 to you all

Chris

The Morning Brew #1012

Posted by on 30 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Today is the last edition of The Morning Brew in 2011 – I will be doing a short ‘2011 Review’ post tomorrow (Saturday) and, once again, due to New Year’s Day falling on a weekend I will be observing Morning Brew tradition in skipping the post on Monday 2nd January as it is a Public Holiday here in the UK. The Morning Brew will return on Tuesday 3rd January.

Software

Information

  • Shadowcasting in C#, Part Six – Eric Lippert wraps up his series on the casting of shadows using algorithms with a look at solving the problem for a viewer in any position, and also shares the project for the Silverlight Sample control to illustrate as a working example.
  • The Myth Of "Infinite Scalability" – Udi Dahan discusses some of the principles of scalability of software applications, discussing how scalability is a function of cost, an also discussing the different metrics to measure when discussing scalability, before calling time on the expression "infinite scalability"
  • Event Centric: finding key business value by leveraging domain events and reactive extensions – Daniel Cazzulino discusses one of the less talked about uses of the Reactive Extensions (Rx) for .NET, looking at how they can be used to work with domain events passed along an event stream.
  • Deploying independent web applications to Windows Azure using single web role – Gunnar Peipman builds on an article from Andy Cross working through a way of hosting multiple web applications on a single Windows Azure Web Role
  • MapReduce Tester: A Quick Word – Carl Nolan continues his exploration of the Hadoop Streaming F# MapReduce code, discussing how to create a simple tester for the Map and Reduce functions supporting the passing of data into the process.
  • F# – A Monadic Pratt Parser – Matthew Manela discusses the concepts behind a Pratt Parser as highlighted in Beautiful Code by Douglas Crockford, and goes on to look at implementing one in F# as a monad using computation expressions to give a clean and concise implementation.
  • Addition to the Coding4Fun Toolkit – MetroFlow – Den Delimarsky highlights the new MetroFlow control added to the latest release of the Coding4Fun Windows Phone 7 Toolkit, looking at the visual structure and how to use it from your XAML pages.
  • RavenDB videos on YouTube – Ayende highlights 5 video sessions which focus on different aspects of RavenDB use, all available for free on YouTube, giving you 4.5+ hours of learning.

The Morning Brew #1011

Posted by on 29 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Software

  • ASP.NET Security Update Shipping Thursday, Dec 29th – Scott Guthrie announces the planned release of an out of band security update for ASP.NET addressing security issues surrounding a new method to exploit hashtable data structures published at a security conference yesterday. The patch will be released at approximately 10am PST today (29th December) and there will be a webcast at 1pm PST (29th December) about the issue.
  • Coding4Fun.Phone.Toolkit v1.5.0 Now Available… – Greg Duncan highlights an updated release of the Coding4Fun Windows Phone Toolkit. This updated release targets Windows Phone 7.1 (Mango) and brings with it some new appearances for controls, the MetroFlow control, along with addressing a number of bugs and issues,
  • VSColorOutput – Visual Studio Output Coloring Extension (Think "Adding color to the Build/Debug Output window text") – Greg Duncan also highlights the VSColorOutput Visual Studio Extension which adds the ability to colour the output of your applications in the output window making it easier to see the ‘wood for the trees’ in this oft busy text window.
  • StyleCop 4.7.0.0. is out – Tatworth highlights the latest update to StyleCop which gives it support for running in ReSharper 6.1. There are no additional changes in this release.

Information

  • Working with the JavaScript "this" Keyword – Dan Wahlin takes a look at the this keyword in JavaScript discussing what ‘this’ will be in a number of scenarios when using object and jQuery, along with sharing some extracts from his Pluralsight Structuring JavaScript code course.
  • On single page apps – Christian Heilmann discusses the rise (once again) of the single page web application, discussing its origins, benefits and disadvantages, along with some of the recent innovations in browsers which can make them better.
  • Extending Unity – Robert May takes a look at extending the Unity Container with a custom strategy for resolving types which does not require the types to be mapped but relies instead on naming conventions.
  • Method name conventions in bddify – Mehdi Khalili continues his series looking in detail at his bddify framework. This part explores the naming and structure of your tests, and the two different ways (reflective and fluent) of reading scenarios.
  • The Big Bang Transcripts Viewer – Marcelo Ricardo de Oliveira works through the building of a Windows Phone application to read the transcripts of the comedy series ‘The Big Bang Theory’ looking at parsing the data and giving a good mobile like presentation of the scripts, making use of a number of the Windows Phone features along the way.
  • Windows Azure Trial Account Spending Limit – Jim O’Neil highlights the new and improved subscription process for Windows Azure, discussing the new Spending Limit features which allow you to better control the costs of your Windows Azure Trial and MSDN accounts.
  • An introduction to Agile development with Team Foundation Server: TFS Support for Agile practices – Giles Davies kicks off a series of posts looking at how Team Foundation Server supports agile development practices. This part provides an introduction to some of the key features and how they address agile concerns.
  • Publication of the PerfView performance analysis tool! – Vance Morrison highlights the new Performance Analysis tool from Microsoft – PrefView. Released recently this tool aims to fill in many of the gaps in the existing lineup of tools, and in this post Vance gives an overview of getting the tool, and highlights some of the key features.
  • Expanding your horizons: Actions – Ayende continues his discussions of learning, discussing theoretical learning and the benefits of rolling up your sleeves and experiencing some of the pain of actually implementing and working with technologies and learning other techniques along the way.
  • Silverlight slideshow with remote control and windows taskbar support – Giorgi Dalakishvili takes a look at using the Native Extensions for Silverlight constructing and sharing a simple slideshow application in Silverlight using the Native Extensions to add more Windows features to the application.

The Morning Brew #1010

Posted by on 28 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Software

Information

  • OSS and .NET Year In Review 2011 – Phil Haack looks back on some of the significant .NET open source projects of the year, focusing on NuGet, Orchard, Micro ORMs, Mono, Azure and the Open Source .NET Community.
  • Shadowcasting in C#, Part Five – Eric Lippert continues his series of posts on the algorithms for casting shadows in the game Rogue. This part looks at filling in the cells as visible in particular columns based upon the visible radius.
  • Backbone.js Is Not An MVC Framework & The Responsibilities Of The Various Pieces Of Backbone.js – Derick Bailey discusses some of the reasons why he does not consider Backbone,js to be an MVC framework, discussing the more MVP architectural structure of Backbone, and in the second post discusses the different parts of Backbone and what they are responsible for.
  • Knockout.js Observable Extensions – Josh Bush takes a look at Knockout.js 2.0’s extender functionality by way of re-looking at his Money observable example, exploring how you can extend ko.subscribable.fn to have the implementation attach directly to the Knockout observable.
  • MVC Techniques with JQuery, JSON, Knockout and C# – Mark J. Caplin works through the creation of an Order Entry application using ASP.NET MVC 4, JSON and client side databinding and behaviour using jQuery and Knockout.js.
  • GUI REPL for Roslyn – Chris Sells continues his exploration of C# REPL using the Roslyn CTP, with this post looking at refactoring the earlier console application to be a WPF based one, and discussing some of the decisions that were needed to make it work.
  • Introducing the for-if anti-pattern – Raymond Chen discusses a common anti pattern often seen in code, where the code spins through a collection of items testing each one when there are better (and much more performant) ways of achieving the same.
  • Anatomy of a .NET Assembly – Type forwards – Simon Cooper discusses the use of Type Forwards by way of the TypeForwardedToAttribute discussing their purpose and use to allow types to be moved between assemblies without requiring recompiles.
  • Rx – Buffer – Bnaya Eshet takes a detailed look at one of the Reactive Extensions most useful operators, the Buffer operator which allows you to slow down the throughput of events to help improve performance and resource utilisation.
  • Introduction to bddify – Mehdi Khalili announces the release of bddify 1.0, a BDD testing framework which makes it easy to turn Arrange Act Assert unit test into BDD tests, and kicks off a series of posts looking at the framework, starting with an introduction to its history and use.
  • 31 Days of Testing – Day 19: Refactoring a ‘Monster’ Functional Test, Part 1 & Day 20: Refactoring a Monster Test, Part 2 – Jim Holmes continues his 31 days of testing series with a look at the process of refactoring a huge functional test containing far too many different steps all rolled together, discussing how you can go about separating them to give a better test structure.
  • Expanding your horizons – Ayende discusses how he learns in the technology space, discussing the importance of getting to grips with the basics and the stuff that underpins everything such as memory management, HTTP, the principles of distributed computing, etc.
  • 11 Things every Software Developer should be doing in 2012. – Michael Crump shares a list of 11 things which he considers to be important for all software developer to be doing to keep them on top of their game in the coming year

The Morning Brew #1009

Posted by on 23 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Christmas is upon us, and this is the last pre-christmas edition of the Morning Brew. With Christmas falling on a weekend the public holidays are all offset here in the UK, so the next edition will be on Wednesday 28th December.

Have a great Christmas everyone!

Software

  • A cul utility library in Craig’s Utility Library v3 – Greg Duncan highlights Craig’s Utility Library V3, a huge collection of helper and extension methods covering a wide range of common tasks – well worth knowing about, and a huge potential time saver.
  • xunitcontrib-resharper 0.5.2 – ReSharper 6.1 support – Matt Ellis announces the release of a updated xUnit.NET test runner for ReSharper 6.1 (and 5.1.3). The release is mostly about supporting ReSharper 6.1, however it also includes support for running tests of derived test cases
  • Get Dropthings license by donating to charity – Omar AL Zabir has changed the licensing or his Dropthings Web2.0 AJAX portal which makes it easy to build personalizable dashboards using modern Microsoft technologies. The new license means you make a charitable donation and get a license to the software.
  • A holiday.js gift for Azure Node.js developers – Glenn Block highlights the release of a December Update to the Windows Azure SDK for Node.js. This update, hot on the heels of the first preview, brings updates to the latest versions of various components and fixes a number reported issues.

Information

  • Shadowcasting in C#, Part Four – Eric Lippert continues his series exploring the development of an algorithm for casting shadows as used in classic games like Rogue. This post follows on from the last and looks at determining the bottom cell
  • C#/.NET Fundamentals: Unit Testing with Func<TResult> Generators – James Michael Hare resumes his C# Fundamentals series with a look at back at the subject of Generic Func Delegates and explores their use as a generator for unit testing.
  • Knockout 2.0.0 is Available – John Papa highlights the release of Knockout.js 2.0.0, recapping what is new and exciting in this release.
  • JavaScript as a First Language – John Resig discusses thoughts on using JavaScript as the first language to teach Computer Science students, highlighting some of the features of the language and learning challenges which makes JavaScript a good starting point.
  • Want to give feedback for Visual Studio 11 etc and receive cool gifts? – Charles Sterling highlights an opportunity for you to get involved with the Visual Studio Design Research Team to help them to build a better product by taking part in one of their research studies, and in return receive a software gift.
  • Will you have a Merry Christmas with your web browser? – Marcin Dembowski takes a look at the performance of the latest versions of various browsers when running the Internet Explorer Christmas Demo, discussing the demo and performance and also highlighting a little Easter Egg in the demo.
  • One Compile A Day – Alfred Thompson discusses how the performance of modern computers and our ability to compile code quickly has changed the way we develop software these days
  • 31 Days of Testing – Day 18: Baseline Datasets – Jim Holmes continues his series on Testing with a look at the use of baseline data sets in your testing, discussing what makes a good baseline data set, and providing advice on building such a data set for your applications.

Community

  • What’s new in ASP.NET MVC 4 webcast: 17 January – Simone Chiaretta will be presenting an online webcast event looking at ASP.NET MVC4 for Microsoft Belgium on Tuesday 17th January. The event will be presented in English and kicks off at 14:00 CET. Registration is required.
  • Win a Windows Phone in our latest competition – The MSDN UK Team are running a competition where you can win a Windows Phone device. The competition is a caption competition and features none other than Clippy. You have until 5th January to enter.

The Morning Brew #1008

Posted by on 22 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Software

  • Knockout 2.0.0 released – Steve Sanderson announces the release of Knockout v2.0.0, a major upgrade to this library for building rich MVVM JavaScript user interfaces. This version was originally planned to be called 1.3, but the desire for Semantic Versioning and the amount of changes made it worth calling a V2. Check out Steve’s post for details of all the new features and improvements.
  • Windows Phone 7.5 Training Kit – Daniel Egan highlights the release of the updated Windows Phone 7.5 Training Kit, available in two formats, basic and advanced. The basic kit (unsurprisingly) contains introductory content to all the key development features and APIs, with the advanced labs centring around adding more complex features to real world applications samples.
  • WPFSpark gets all V1.0! & Windows Forms Toolkit v0.2… A little WinForm love for the holidays… – Greg Duncan highlights two control libraries, one for WPF and the other for Winforms. WPF Spark has now reached the milestone 1.0 release, adding a bunch of new controls to the library in the process, and the Windows Forms Toolkit shows that WinForms development is alive and kicking with some nice user experience controls.

Information

  • Mono in 2011 – Miguel de Icaza takes a look back over 2011 from a Mono Project point of view, highlighting some major changes to the alternative .NET platform, both organisationally and also in technology terms.
  • Taking a look at the Windows Simulator in Visual Studio 11 – Michael Crump takes a look at the emulator included in Visual Studio 11 which allows you to work with and debug Windows 8 Metro style apps. Michael walks through the features of the emulator, discussing its use and highlighting the emulator features for simulating multitouch.
  • New Developer Centers on WindowsAzure.com – Peter Laudati highlights the newly updated Windows Azure Developer site which now adds (and makes more prominent) a number of new technologies supported on Windows Azure.
  • Continuous Delivery – Adding an Automated Interface Test Stage – Eli Weinstock-Herman presses on with his series on Continuous Delivery taking a look in this post at setting up the continuous integration / build environment to run automated user interface tests.
  • Building Apps and deploying them from GitHub – Joe Stagner highlights a new facility on GitHub allowing you to host your Mozilla Apps (HTML 5 browser based applications) directly off your GitHub repository for the project.
  • Introduction To Designing For Windows Phone 7 And Metro – Daniela Panfili discusses the design of Windows Phone and Metro applications, discussing colours, controls, icons and animation in this Smashing Magazine article.
  • Mango Sample: Portable Assemblies – Jerry Nixon continues his Mango Samples series with a look at the use of portable assemblies to allow you to consume the same assembly from Silverlight, Phone and regular .NET code.

Community

The Morning Brew#1007

Posted by on 21 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Software

  • ReSharper 6.1, dotCover 1.2 and dotTrace 4.5.2 Performance Released – The Team over at JetBrains share an early Christmas present with us all in the form of three new releases. ReSharper 6.1, dotCover 1.2 and dotTrace 4.5.2 have all emerged from their EAP status into fully fledged releases, each bringing some new features and enhancements to the table.
  • TouchDevelop v2.5: new tutorial, artwork, forum, and more – Nikolai Tillmann announces the release of TouchDevelop v2.5 which fixes a number of reported issues along with adding some new APIs, a new tutorial and a number of other new features.
  • TFS + NuGet =';s? TFS NuGetter of course! – Greg Duncan highlights TFS NuGetter, a project which extends the Team Foundation Server 2010 build process to easily make NuGet Packages of your build artefacts and publish them in an automated and repeatable way.

Information

The Morning Brew #1006

Posted by on 20 Dec 2011 | Tagged as: .NET, Development, Morning Brew

Software

  • PhoneGap 1.3 Released – The PhoneGap team announce the release of PhoneGap 1.3, a significant update which brings improved BlackBerry and Windows Phone support to this toolkit for building Phone applications using HTML5 and JavaScript.
  • Full Support for PhoneGap on Windows Phone is Now Complete! – Abu Obeida over on the Interoperability @ Microsoft blog discusses the PhoneGap release, highlighting feature level of the WP7 integration, discussing the integration with Visual Studio and looking forward to PhoneGap 1.4

Information

  • Shadowcasting in C#, Part Three – Eric Lippert continues his look at the algorithms surrounding a simple problem from the game Rogue, and in this post digs down into a division operation, going into detail on the operation to determine the top cell.
  • Sharing with CompositionScopeDefinition in MEF 2 & What’s new in MEF 2 Preview 5? – Nick Alok discusses the a new type in the Managed Extensibility Framework (MEF) called CompositionScopeDefinition which controls the sharing of items produced by the export factory. Nick also discusses some of the changes in MEF2 Preview release 5, which has just been released.
  • SOLID JavaScript: The Open/Closed Principle – Derek Greer presses on with his series looking at the application of the SOLID principles to programming in in this post discussing the Open/Closed Principle, illustrating its application wih an example.
  • Using the JavaScript Prototype Property to Structure and Extend Code – Dan Wahlin discusses the use of the Prototype property that all JavaScript object have and looks at using it to extend the behaviour of code, discussing the Prototype and Revealing Prototype patterns
  • The rise and rise of JavaScript – Dan North discusses the recent rise in popularity of the JavaScript language, discussing many of the places where it is cropping up these days, discussing the improvement in techniques and ways of working with the language and looking to the future of JavaScript.
  • Memory Management In .Net – Story Board – Paul Stack highlights a nice storyboard introduction to how memory management works in .NET from the folks over at Redgate.
  • Performance Guidelines for Properties – Rico Mariani shares his guide to te performance of properties in .NET discussing principles you should observe when creating your properties implementations, and discussing the performance considerations.
  • Free eBook: OWASP Top 10 for .NET developers – Troy Hunt announces the release of his free eBook on the top 10 security vulnerabilities for we applications as described by OWASP focusing on them from a .NET point of view. This was a great blog article series, and if you haven’t already read it this is essential Christmas holiday reading.
  • Mango Sample: Resources Part 1: Themes,Part 2: Colors,Part 3: Sizes & Part 4: Styles – Jerry Nixon continues his Mango Samples seriese with a 4 part look at the use of resources in your Windows Phone Applications discussing the use of Themes, Colours, sizes and styles.

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