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# Wednesday, 13 June 2007
Well I’ve definitely by slacking on my blog posts and I’m sure my frequent visitors have been a little disappointed in me. I have managed to get a new style to the site up and I am still trying to get all the content migrated over.
It’s been a chaotic few months for me as I unfortunately have been forced onto a new career path. Professional Edge closed its doors recently due to what I have been told was a large gap in the sales pipeline. I really enjoyed being a consultant there and was disappointed to leave behind the environment and the individuals I worked with. The sudden change has forced me back into the cooperate environment which strangely enough I swore I would never go back to.
Apparently the job market right now it very hot for .NET developers as I had several offers for development positions. The one thing I did notice from talking with potential employers is that there are definitely what I would consider a lot of bad practices going on. This includes things ranging from not using source control, to poor architecture (or none at all), to even the production database being the same as the test database.
Anyways, while I feel out the cooperate environment in my new job I have also partnered with two other former Professional Edge employees to work on a project that we feel there is a business need for so I’ve been putting in some long days lately and probably will be for a while.
On completely another matter, and to keep this blog post useful, I wanted to post the links to the three podcasts that I make a point of listening to every week. I guarantee that  you would benefit from listening to them as well. 
The first one is Hanselminutes by Scott Hanselman. Scott’s podcast is excellent and covers a wide range of technology topics. He normally covers something related to Microsoft development, but sometimes like today, he talks about the latest tech items that are out, such as Microsoft Surface. The best thing about Scott is that when listening to his podcast you feel like you’ve sat down with a friend to discuss technology over a beer. (Scott, I’d love to buy you a beer sometime.)
The second one is .Net Rocks by Richard Campbell and Carl Franklin. Richard and Carl do a great job of pulling in the top .Net people to interview and do a great job exploring two different topics in two shows each week. If you’re not listening to this one then I don’t know how you can call yourself a .Net developer. 
The last one is RunAs Radio with Richard Campbell and Greg Hughes. Whereas this podcast doesn’t cover .Net it does cover a lot of technologies, both hardware and software that you’ll be interacting with and integrating with as a developer. Today’s podcast was on the latest version of IIS which every ASP.Net developer will be working with in the future.
 Listen to these podcasts! They will keep you informed of what is going on in the .NET community and in technology in general. They all add up to about three hours a week so I normally have plenty of time to listen to them while I am exercising. Just to reiterate you are a fool if you are not listening to these podcasts. They are a fast and easy way to try and stay up to date on what is out there and what you should be investigating further. Technology is changing so rapidly that it is impossible to know what is all out there, let alone learn it all, so I find that listening to these allows me to found out what is there and filter out what I want to explore further.
That’s about it for now. I wish all my former coworkers and friends from Professional Edge the best of luck in whatever they end up doing. As for everyone else, drop me a line if you want to contract out some development work to me.
Wednesday, 13 June 2007 06:00:00 (Central Daylight Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to del.icio.us - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
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# Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Well, I feel it is important to put together a toolkit of controls to use when developing for a client.  One of the controls I have created is the Textbox Filter Extender which will allow you to limit a textbox to numeric, alpha, or alphanumeric characters.  I've post the control for anyone to have access to and use.  Free free to check it out over in the development tools section.   If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for improvements please post them to the proper forum section.

 

Tuesday, 24 April 2007 06:00:00 (Central Daylight Time, UTC-05:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to del.icio.us - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
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# Monday, 12 March 2007

Well I passed the 70-228 exam which means I am one test away from my MCDBA.  The best part of it is that I am done with the SQL tests so now I get to focus on what I prefer more, which is development.  To study I used the Microsoft Press book: MCSA/MCSE/MCDBA Self Paced Training Kit: Microsoft SQL Server 2000 System Administration.  I selected this book simply because it appeared to be the best of the poor quality of books out there.  It was a rather boring read, and the hands on training involved running a bunch of prewritten scripts that were sometimes not explained very well.  I passed though, which is what matters.

   What I have decided though is that instead of providing me with an evaluation copy of SQL Server 2000 (or for that fact the software for what ever test you may be studying for) the publisher should provide the reader with a virtual pc image of what is required for the test.  For example all of the exercises in this book expected SQL Server 2000 running in a domain with a specific domain/computer name.  Also, several exercises required specific domain users be setup.  I would assume that most people do not have a setup like this unless they are studying on company time, and even if I did have a setup like this I wouldn't want to be messing it up adding unneccessary users for use with the exercises.  Now that Virtual PC is free it would be great for this particular test to have been provided with a virtual image of Windows Server 2003 (feel free to have it expire in 6 months like it would if I downloaded the eval copy) along with the install files for SQL Server 2000. (For this particular test installing and setup are part of the test hence not having the software already installed.  For the 70-229 test the server could already be installed as that is out of scope of the test.)  The server could then be preconfigured with the proper naming conventions and users which the setup of is completely out of the scope of the test.  This would allow the user to focus more time on the topics covered in the exam and not on the environment.  I would have to think that something like this would make all of us very happy.  Let me know what you think!

Monday, 12 March 2007 05:00:00 (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Comments [0] - Trackback - Save to del.icio.us - Digg This! - Follow me on Twitter
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David A. Osborn
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