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# Tuesday, December 19, 2006

It's that time again.  Time for the SYS-CON Readers' Choice Awards voting.  Actually, it's been that time for a little while now; I'm just slow.

Infragistics has been nominated for several categories in several publications, so if you like Infragistics or even if you're looking for a way to kill a few minutes at the airport, go vote for us.

Here's your friendly voter's guide to make your life easier (note that if you don't know or prefer any choice in a particular category, you can just click Continue to move on):


#11 - NetAdvantage for JSF

#12 - NetAdvantage for JSF

#20 - JSuite

#24 - NetAdvantage for JSF

#28 - NetAdvantage for JSF


#4 – NetAdvantage for .NET

#14 – NetAdvantage for .NET


#3 – NetAdvantage for ASP.NET

#6 – Infragistics Training and Consulting

#7 – Infragistics Training and Consulting

#8 – NetAdvantage for ASP.NET


#3 – NetAdvantage AppStylist

#4 – Infragistics Training and Consulting

#5 – Infragistics NetAdvantage for .NET

#10 – TestAdvantage for Windows Forms

Tuesday, December 19, 2006 6:28:11 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I finally got a chance to start looking at the blog posts that have been piling up in my Newsgator for a few months now, and I was pleasantly surprised by probably the best thoughts on SOA I've seen in a long time.  I'm really glad that Rocky's fighting the good fight on this one, and he's been consistent, too.  Another, more thorough commentary on the subject is provided by a good friend of mine, Tom Fuller, in his article last year on The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Service-Oriented Architecture.

The bottom line, IMO, is that working towards SOA is a good thing, but we have to be very cautious and extremely deliberate in how we get there.  I think most good architects know this, but we have to get the message out there and overcome the hype to minimize the trough of despair.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006 6:47:42 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Monday, November 13, 2006

Last week, the head geek at Telligent told me about this new service they’re offering called blogmailr.  It’s a pretty cool concept; it allows folks to post to their blogs using email.  So I thought I’d try it out.  If this works or not, it went through blogmailr.  It’s worth a look.

Monday, November 13, 2006 11:28:40 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 

I was just reminded by our local Dev Evangelist, Peter Laudati, that we've got our third NJ CodeCamp coming up this weekend.  Code camps are a fun way to get to know other local devs, learn some cool stuff, and generally get at least a free lunch!  So you should go!

Monday, November 13, 2006 9:55:40 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Friday, November 10, 2006

So Infragistics had a pretty cool release today, if I do say so myself.  We've released a beta patch for our NetAdvantage for ASP.NET product that supports Microsoft's ASP.NET AJAX Beta 1 and Beta 2. 

Support Details

  • Our controls will register themselves with the UpdatePanel to ensure proper operation within it.
  • Our Javascript Client-Side Object Model (CSOM) continues to work alongside the Microsoft AJAX Library.
  • Infragistics controls will not interfere with the Microsoft AJAX Library.
  • Infragistics controls can be embedded in and work with ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit controls.

I'm pretty pumped about ASP.NET AJAX, especially the Microsoft AJAX Library.  It should make client-side development across browsers much easier, and with the AJAX Extensions, it helps make adding AJAX to your apps in ASP.NET considerably easier, and the UpdatePanel is an indisputable help in that respect.

Infragistics is committed to the ASP.NET AJAX platform.  We'll be supporting it throughout the beta, the release, and beyond.  We've been adding AJAX-powered features since 2004, and it is only going to get better for us and everyone else thanks to the new platform and tool enhancements that are coming down the line.

Friday, November 10, 2006 7:39:04 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Thursday, November 2, 2006

Let me start by saying that I neither strongly adhere to nor dissent from the theory of evolution.  I figure God could easily have created a universe in which things evolve just as he could have done it in one instant and have things as they are now.

What I object to, however, is the use of science, in particular biology and genetics, to try to answer the big questions in life.  Science, biology, genetics--they're all good things that help us to understand the way things are, but they fall flat when they try to answer why humans are the way we are or, perhaps more importantly, how we should act.

There's a fairly common sentiment these days that we're just another animal.  The resultant moral implication is that we can and should just act like animals, just follow our animal instincts. 

The support for this comes from, in part, the study of our DNA (good science) and the study of primate DNA (also good science) with the observation being that hey, some really high percentage of our DNA is identical to that of apes.  Of course, the idea that we're closely related on the biological order to apes is nothing new; it's simply advances in genetics have recently (historically speaking) helped to confirm this.

In other words, you often hear (or at least I do) materialists, atheists, agnostics (i.e., non-theistic types) say things like "we're just a bunch of apes" or something along those lines.  And it seems to make sense; it has the ring of truth because science does indeed show that in many ways we're related. 

But, and it is this "but" that makes all the difference in the multiverse (or universe if you prefer), BUT we are NOT apes.  Take an ape into your home, raise him like a child, do everything you'd do if he were a human, and in the end, you still have an ape.  He is an animal not capable of higher (abstract) reasoning, that can't speak any human language, and if released into society would soon be caught and put in a zoo because he IS just an ape.  And these are just the natural characteristics--ignoring the spiritual.

Think of it this way.  What are the attributes of a triangle?  It is two-dimensional.  It is made up of straight lines.  It has corners.  Now consider a square; what are its attributes?  Is it not also two-dimensional?  Is it not also made up of straight lines and corners?  In virtually every way but one--the number of lines--triangles and squares are the same.  And yet they are NOT the same.  No sane person would say otherwise.  No matter that they are alike in many more ways than they are different--they are essentially different kinds of things.

So it is with humans and apes.  We have many similarities on the natural level, far more than differences.  But in the end, we are not apes, and only a fool or an insane or unthinking person can say that we are. 

So let's stop all this nonsense about humans being just another kind of ape.  And with the ending of such silliness, we must also end the silly suggestions that we can and should just follow our animal instincts.  No matter how alike we may be to other animals, in the end, it is our minds and souls that truly make us human and impose upon us a higher moral order, even if we like to pretend that God does not exist.

Thursday, November 2, 2006 8:21:52 PM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
# Thursday, October 26, 2006

Today we launched our new web site.  It was not just a simple update; we revamped the whole deal and made it Web 2.0 compliant <grin>.  If you remember our old site, I trust you'll immediately see the improvement.  Please take a minute to check it out and let me know what you think.  Also, if you run into any problems with it, please feel free to let us know.

Thursday, October 26, 2006 7:24:38 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [3]  | 
# Monday, October 23, 2006

I just spent an hour or more that I DON'T HAVE debugging a mysterious caching issue.  I suppose in some cases it might be obvious, but in this one, it was not.  To sum up, we're using an XmlDataSource control generically and setting its Data property programmatically (and using an XSL--don't know if that matters). 

Anyways, apparently the dang control defaults to "cache indefinitely" and won't refresh until the file it depends on changes.  I guess the thing is that it doesn't look for changes when you set the Data property, so it caches indefinitely to be sure.  Set EnableCaching to false, and voila, the problem is solved.

This just highlights a rule that all general APIs should follow--don't do any automatic caching.  You can't account for all the ways your customers will use your stuff, so just don't do it.  It's not hard to make them flip a bit to turn it on. 


Monday, October 23, 2006 10:39:43 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [1]  | 
# Tuesday, October 17, 2006

And overall I think it went quite well.  My Suave Sessions session was attended by a whopping ONE PERSON!  I seem to recall his name is Mark, and he runs the Ft. Worth DNUG, so kudos to him for picking a great session!  I know it wasn't sexy, but good session handling is something we should all be concerned about, certainly more so than getting an intro to DNN by the great Shaun Walker (who was presenting at the same time and whom I blame for stealing all my potential attendees).  The good news is that it's recorded and Wrox will be hosting it on their web site, so all of you folks who made the unfortunate decision not to attend can still get the session.  :)

Download the dotNetTemplar Session Management Module (for the Suave Sessions Session) - Even if you didn't see the session, you can start adding good session handling to your pages right away.  There's demo web project there to show how to use it.  If you want the demos from the presentation, let me know.

The EntLib session didn't go quite so well.  Apparently, I should really check to ensure my old demos work before the day of when I give a repeat session, he thought, embarrassed.  So I apologize again to all the troopers who toughed out the session with no running demos.  Thankfully, the core concepts could still be expressed; it just wasn't as fun as it could be.

Download the ELMAH EntLib Exception Handler/Logger - This can be used to both specify ELMAH as a custom EntLib exception handler and use EntLib for your db access in ELMAH.

To use it, configure ELMAH as usual.  If you want to use the EntLib logger, use GotDotNet.Elmah.EntLibErrorLog as the error log type instead of the standard SQL one. 

To use the custom exception handler in EntLib, you just need to choose it in the EntLib GUI by loading the ELMAH DLL and picking the GotDotNet.Elmah.ElmahEntLibExceptionHandler as the handler type.  It should look something like this in the standard config:

<add type="System.Exception, mscorlib, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b77a5c561934e089"
  postHandlingAction="None" name="Exception">
add type="GotDotNet.Elmah.ElmahEntLibExceptionHandler, GotDotNet.Elmah, Version=2.0.50727.42, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=58d6fbf09c89f721" name="Elmah EntLib Exception Handler" />

The public key token will differ, though.  I just reconditioned this for public use real quick like, so let me know if you have any issues.

Download the Slides From Both Presentations - In case you didn't get the DVD.

Other than that, I have to give some big kudos to David Walker and his team for putting the conference together.  I've spoken at a number of code camp activities, and this was definitely one of the best organized and professionally done.  I can't help but think that their not shunning sponsors (like Infragistics) helped in making it better.  While I appreciate the academic ideal of trying to keep the code camp focused on devs sharing with devs, I think it is perhaps not in the best interests of anyone to shun sponsorship.  The vendors who sponsor conferences like that have tools that are supposed to make devs lives better, so in my opinion, it only makes sense to welcome them in as long as it is done tastefully.

And no, I didn't just start thinking this now that I'm working for a vendor; you can ask Joe Healy--I was pushing for sponsors when I was helping organize the Tampa code camp.  After all, it's not like Microsoft's stuff is free, and if the conference is about using Microsoft's technologies, why limit the vendor sponsors and topics to Microsoft?  Microsoft does a lot to make software development better, and we all welcome that.  I'm just suggesting the same thinking be extended to other companies who do the same thing.

Anyways, I didn't intend to rant about that really; I mainly wanted to say that David et al did a great job.  It was good to visit my hometown again, and while I didn't make it out to Ron's Chli & Hamburgers Too for that sausage chili cheeseburger I've been missing, I still thoroughly enjoyed the visit.  Tulsa certainly has been growing its dev community, and I hope they continue to do so.

That's it.  Hope everyone's having a great day!  Sorry bout the delay in getting this up.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006 3:55:26 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 

The opinions expressed herein are solely my own personal opinions, founded or unfounded, rational or not, and you can quote me on that.

Thanks to the good folks at dasBlog!

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