Showing posts with label .Net. Show all posts
Showing posts with label .Net. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

.NET in 2015... Is it .NET 4.6, .NET Core 5, both? Beth knows and shares... (Hint: Both)

Beth Massi - Understanding .NET 2015

Last year after BUILD I posted Exciting Times for .NET and since then I have had the pleasure of working much closer with the .NET team, which includes the runtime, framework, languages & compilers. Although my focus has been a lot more on internal community in the last year, such as helping run internal conferences for our field employees, I’ve also spent time helping get the .NET Foundation off the ground and learning a lot about open source communities and all our .NET Foundation projects. Oh right, I also got married. :-) It’s been a transition period for me. Going from community “evangelist” to more of a “facilitator” or “connector”.  I really like Alex Hillman’s term: Tummler.

Now that we’re approaching the next BUILD, I’m even more excited about the progress we’ve been making, particularly around the .NET platform itself, and the team’s approach to open source. There are multiple tracks of .NET innovations happening so I thought I’d write a high-level “sign-post” style blog post to help people understand the major pieces and how and where to get involved with the projects. In other words, a good place to start learning about .NET 2015. At least that’s my hope!

.NET 2015 – 10,000 foot view

At a very high level, here’s the rundown of the major components that fall under the “.NET 2015” umbrella.

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Major components of .NET 2015
Frameworks and Runtimes

The .NET Framework is a managed execution environment that provides a variety of services to its running applications. It consists of two major components: the common language runtime (CLR), which is the execution engine that handles running applications; and the .NET Framework Class Library, which provides a library of tested, reusable code that developers can call from their own applications.

.NET Framework 4.6 builds upon 4.5.2 and contains new APIs, improvements to event tracing, and many bug fixes. This is the next version of the full .NET Framework we know today. .NET Framework 4.6 will be included in Windows 10 and will also ship on Windows Update for previous OSes (Vista and above). See: .NET Framework 2015 Preview

.NET Core 5 is a general purpose, modular framework that can be used across a wide variety of app models and platforms, is available as open source, can be deployed modularly & locally (side-by-side), and will be supported by Microsoft on Windows, Linux and Mac OSX. It is a refactored set of base class libraries (corefx) and runtime (coreclr) which includes a new JIT compiler (“RyuJIT”), the .NET Garbage Collector, native interop and many other .NET runtime components. Today, .NET Core builds and runs on Windows. We are adding Linux and Mac implementations of platform-specific components over the next few months.

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I know YOU all know and understand what .NET 4.6, .NET 5 (Core), etc. etc. are, but I bet some (many/most) of your co-workers don't. Beth does a great job in detailing both, what's in what and what's not, what's open source (now and in the future) and what's not... In short, read her article. AND keep if for reference, as it IS a little confusing right now (and for a few years into the future, I'll bet...)

Monday, February 09, 2015

Pluralsight Learning Path Dev Insanity ("Understanding the .NET Framework", "C# End to End" & "T-SQL CRUD")

Pluralsight blog - Learning Path: Understanding the .NET Framework

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Learning path objective:

The courses outlined in this learning path provide a comprehensive look at the operation of the CLR, as well as a tour of key classes in the Framework Class Library that every .NET developer — regardless of the type of application or service they’re building — should understand.

Target audience:

This learning path is designed for developers who have been introduced to C#, and want to develop a deeper understanding of the foundation upon which every .NET application is built.

...

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Pluralsight blog - C# End to End

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Learning path objective:

The goal of this learning path is to take you from having little to no experience with C# to understanding how to leverage the language’s advanced features and how it works on the CLR. This includes basic logic flow, generics, interfaces, collections and enumerables, extension methods, asynchronous operations and LINQ.

...

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Pluralsight blog - T-SQL CRUD

CRUD! It’s everywhere. And by CRUD I mean the Create/Read/Update/Delete operations used by applications that rely on persistent storage. In my career, I would venture that 90 percent of the applications on which I’ve worked have revolved around CRUD operations against a relational database. Transact Structured Query Language (otherwise known as T-SQL) is a superset of the ANSI SQL language that operates on Microsoft SQL Server. Being able to leverage T-SQL is key to incorporating SQL Server in your business workflows and custom software applications.

Learning path objective:

This learning path aims to help make you proficient in using T-SQL to query and manage data on SQL Server 2012. The path begins with gentle introductions to reading and updating data using ANSI SQL, and then guides you through more specialized aspects of applying T-SQL to business problems including working with dates and times, XML data, Common Table Expressions and analytic functions.

...

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Want even more? Check out all their Learning Paths, http://blog.pluralsight.com/category/learning-paths

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Five Fun F# Facts

Infragistics - Five interesting facts about Microsoft F#

Since its 2005 conception at a Microsoft Research Center, use of the F# language has seen steady growth among developers both in the Open Source Community and for enterprise applications. Because it combines safe, simple and robust coding with the option of application on practically any operating system, it makes for an interesting proposition with developers seeking simple solutions to complex problems.

Many consider F# particularly suitable to scientific or big data based applications, but it is actually good when applied to a whole host of problems and applications. Characterized as a functional programming language with strong typing, it is able to express a developer's ideas in a succinct and declarative way.

However, while growing in popularity, F# is a long way from universal adoption. In this post we’re going to look in more detail at what makes F# different and why it might be you worth getting to know better.

1. The importance of community...

2. Five wins for functional programming ...

3. Practical application in a variety of industries ...

4. Universal ...

5. Fun to use ...

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I don't F# yet, but really dig the work being done on it and the community behind it. It's the little train that could... :)

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

Bond... Microsoft Open Source, Bond (the cross-platform high scale serialization library... Microsoft Bond)

InfoQ - Microsoft Open Sources Cross-platform Serialization Library – Bond

Last month Microsoft open sourced Bond, a cross-platform framework for processing schematized data. Bond supports cross-language serialization/deserialization and powerful generic mechanisms for efficiently manipulating data. The framework is broadly used at Microsoft in high-scale services. The project is currently available at GitHub under the permissive MIT license. Current version supports C++, C# and Python and is available on Linux, OS-X and Windows. The Bond compiler is written in pure Haskell.

Bond shares many similarities with other serialization systems, for example Google Protocol BuffersThrift and Avro:

  • Bond messages are defined in the IDL – like language
  • It maps all Bond’s data type to the native language data types

Bond’s implementation however has one major difference: it doesn’t hard-code type mappings. It allows one to plug-in many things that aren't part of the core schema logic -whether to serialize from Bond schemas or a custom type, what the wire format is, whether to put custom metadata in the payload, and so on. For example, in C++ the defaults are STL containers like std::vector; however, a user can easily map custom types - using Python’s boost::multi index container in a generated C++ struct or mapping a uint64 schema field to a System.DateTime field in a generated C# class-. Bond generated C++ structs can also use custom allocators.

A nice comparison between Bond and Google Protocol Buffers is presented is this Stack Overflow

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Microsoft open-sources cross-platform serialization library, Bond

Hey all, I wrote a small part of Bond, so let me see if I can answer some of the questions here:

  • Bond is used pervasively throughout the company, in a lot of mission-critical systems. I don't know that I can say where publicly, but when Adam says it's used for scale infrastructure, he really means it.
  • It was started sometime around when Thrift was just picking up steam, so it's been around in one form or another for awhile. The released version is actually Bond v3.
  • The answer to the "why" question is more or less here: http://microsoft.github.io/bond/why_bond.html The short of it is that the differences between systems like Thrift, PB, and Avro, tended to be in things like wire format, protocol, format of target class, etc., and not as much in the logic of how you do things like version schemas. But in short, IMHO the innovation of Bond is that it allows you to plug in a lot of the things that aren't core schema logic (e.g., whether to serialize from Bond schemas or a custom type, what the wire format is, whether to put custom metadata in the payload, and so on).

If you want to offer feedback or ask questions, you can either email Adam Sapek (adamsap -at- microsoft) or me, Alex Clemmer (aclemmer@microsoft.com), and I will loop you in with the correct people.

...

Microsoft/bond

Bond is a cross-platform framework for working with schematized data. It supports cross-language de/serialization and powerful generic mechanisms for efficiently manipulating data. Bond is broadly used at Microsoft in high scale services.

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Bond

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For details, see the User's Manuals for C++, C# and Python.

For a discussion how Bond compares to similar frameworks see Why Bond.

Dependencies

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Linux

Bond can be built with Clang (3.4+) or GNU C++ (4.7+). We recommend the latest version of Clang as it's much faster with template-heavy code like Bond.

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OS X

Install XCode and then run the following command to install required packages using Homebrew ...

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Windows

Install the following tools:

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Really, I just wanted to to use Bond in the title... :P

Monday, February 02, 2015

Cool eBook of the Day: "The Developer’s Guide to the New .NET"

Telerik - Free eBook--The Developer’s Guide to the New .NET

It’s 2015, and there have been a lot of changes in the Microsoft landscape with .NET. As you kick-start the New Year, you may be wondering how to catch up with all of these changes and announcements, quickly and easily. You could read countless blogs, watch videos and scour the Internet. Or, simply read an eBook, which tells you everything.

I’m pleased to announce the “The Developer’s Guide to the new .NET” eBook is now available for download for FREE. Authored by myself and Sam Basu (both Microsoft MVPs), we’ve created a no-fluff developer-to-developer breakdown of what’s coming to .NET in 2015. The future of .NET looks awesome, and you’ll be glad to be a part of this.

...

In this eBook, we’ll take a look at:

  • .NET Goes Open Source: What does that mean to you as a .NET developer?
  • Windows 10: What we know so far and why it matters to you as a .NET developer?
  • Visual Studio 2015: Includes several tips and tricks to get you up to speed FAST!
  • C# 6.0: We’ll take a look at code snippets that show you exactly what features you may want to take advantage of in your next app.
  • Roslyn: Can I do more than create my own compiler? What else can I do with it?
  • .NET on a Mac: Are you serious? We’ll take a look at how native .NET development is a reality on a Mac.
  • Resources and additional information: We’ll talk about how the future is very bright for .NET developer and how using the Telerik Stack can further enhance productivity.

The Developer’s Guide to the New .NET [Download page]

This ebook is no fluff–just a developer-to-developer breakdown of what’s in store for .NET in 2015. Included are code snippets and step-by-step tutorials on handy new features and techniques.

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Download for free, and learn more about:

  • Visual Studio 2015
  • .NET core goes open source
  • Cross platform development with .NET
  • C# 6.0
  • Roslyn
  • Windows 10

Michael Crump, the man, the myth, the legend in his own [time|mind], shares this new free (reg-ware) eBook from Telerik, which is very manager-safe (i.e. formatted like a PowerPoint deck, lots of pictures, etc.. oh... wait... did I really say that out loud?...um... yeah) view of the coming new .NET world.

Kidding aside, this format is great for those who want to get the higher level view of what's coming in the new .NET. Those co-workers who are not info-hounds like you, the dev's who just want the highlights, etc. It's only 47 pages and really is a nice, quick and informative read. And did I say it was free? :)

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Monday, January 12, 2015

DotNetKicks is alive and, well, kicking!

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DNK is new and you are part of it!

Just a bit of news that we have completely rearchitected, programmed and designed DNK over the last 3 months. As all of us here know, DNK is now showing the best .Net content on a daily basis. We’re seeing over new stories 10 a day, so don’t miss out.

DNK’s format now lets you see comments inline in a nifty sidebar. Voting is only when you like a piece because it’s all from the community. The notification system has been rebuilt and the site is more than 2X as fast.

Pretty good for 3 months!

If you want to be a contributor to the site just email us at support@dotnetkicks.com with a bit about what you’re working on in .Net.

Thank you for your support of DotNetKicks!

Robert, Bob, Paul, Mike and James

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Back in the day, DNK used to be one of my favorite news aggregators/social/link/thing. But it seemed to fall on hard times and withered away...

Well what was old is new again and DNK is back baby! Feed re-added to my news stream :)

 

Related Past Post XRef:
DotNetKicks Widget Added to Posts

Rest easy with RESTier - Building your Web API OData feeds faster with RESTier

OData Team - [Announcement] RESTier - A turn-key solution to build OData services

What is RESTier

RESTier is a RESTful API development framework for building standardized, OData V4 based REST services on .NET. It can be seen as a middle-ware on top of Web API OData.  RESTier is built with the inspiration of combining simplicity of WCF DS with the flexibility of Web API OData.

The main exciting features of RESTier are:

  • Help developer quickly build an OData service within minutes. You need just one controller, no more than 100 lines of code to easily bootstrap an OData service. 
  • Help developer easily add business logic into their services.

What about ASP.NET Web API OData?

As mentioned in the first part, RESTier is based on Web API OData. Web API OData will continuously be improved and RESTier will benefit from the improvements.

Getting started

The main getting started tutorials below show you how to user RESTier step by step.

...

Document and more samples

RESTier intends to be fully open-sourced, source code will be available on GitHub soon.

  • GitHub repository . We use GitHub to track issues. You can report bugs, provide improvement suggestion directly on GitHub
  • RESTier wiki . Detailed document and samples are available here.

...

Please be noted

  • RESTier is still at a preview stage.
  • RESTier currently only supports Entity Framework data provider. Other data providers will be added in the future.

...

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Mostly I liked the title... lol.

That said, I like the concept behind making it easier to create, though we've all learned to take claims like this with a grain of salt. Will be keeping an eye on this to see if it has any legs...

Thursday, January 08, 2015

Coding4Fun Toolkit Lives! v2.0.9 released with more WinRT/WP 8.1 support

Invoke IT Limited - Coding4Fun v2.0.9 released #wpdev #windev #winrt

Coding4Fun toolkit v2.0.9 for Windows Platform dev has been released and packages are available for download from Nuget.

This update builds additional support for Windows Runtime on Windows Phone 8.1 and Windows 8.1. Controls added to this release include

  • MetroFlow control (Windows 8.1 and WP 8.1)
  • Prompts (Toast, User, Message, Input, PasswordInput) for WP 8.1
  • BrushToBrushConverter now allows use of parameter to set output Opacity.

...

SubramanyamRaju Windows Phone Tutorials(C# - XAML) - Great News! Coding4Fun Toolkit Controls are supported for Windows Phone 8.1- Part 1 (C#-Xaml)

Introduction:

Yesterday i found from twitter as 'Coding4Fun Toolkit is Supported for Windows Phone 8.1'.And i want to be say thanks to Hermit Dave for sharing this info on twitter. Now Coding4Fun toolkit v2.0.9 for Windows Platform dev has been released and packages are available for download from Nuget.
In WindowsPhone 8.0 we got lot of additional controls from Coding4Fun,The Coding4Fun Toolkit has multiple controls and useful items for XAML based applications.And current version v2.0.9  includes following controls.
  • MetroFlow control (Windows 8.1 and WP 8.1)
  • Prompts (Toast, User, Message, Input,About, PasswordInput) for WP 8.1
  • BrushToBrushConverter now allows use of parameter to set output Opacity.
Note: In Version 2.0.8,support was added for windowsphone store 8.1 and now more controls were ported across in 2.0.9. So that 2.0.9 is second version for wp8.1 store :)
...This article will teach you about 'How to use MessagePrompt control in WindowsPhone store 8.1 ?'.

...

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Coding4Fun Toolkit

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I thought I was seeing things when I started seeing activity on the Coding4Fun Toolkit project. Nope, it's alive and still kicking... Okay, so it wasn't a huge release, but still it's STILL a release! Kudo's to the new team and their work...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Coding4Fun Toolkit v2 Released (fka Coding4Fun.Phone.Toolkit), now with Windows Store, Windows Phone 8 and Windows Phone 7!

Coding4Fun.Phone.Toolkit v1.5.0 Now Available...

Coding4Fun Windows Phone Toolkit (CF4 Blog Post)

Coding4Fun.Phone.Toolkit v1.3 Released (New Message Prompt, Password Prompt controls and Toast fixes + now NuGet'able too)
The Coding4Fun team has done it again, released another “Kit” that is… The Coding4Fun Windows Phone Toolkit
CF4DevKit (Coding 4 Fun Development Kit) 1.0 Released
Cool Coding with VS2008 and Vista via the Coding4Fun Developer Kit 2008 Vol 1 (Beta

Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition ($9,975 value WITH updates/support) now available for free for individual and small companies

SuperDevResources - Free Toolkit worth $9,975 from Syncfusion for Individual Developers & Small Companies

Syncfusion has decided to follow the steps of Microsoft and is giving a great New Year present to Individual Developers & Small Companies. Similar to Visual Studio Community Edition, Syncfusion is now offering free License for its product Essential Studio which includes over 650 components across 12 platforms such as iOS, Android, Windows & Windows Phone.

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Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition Community License

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WHAT IS THE COMMUNITY LICENSE?

The Essential Studio Enterprise Edition Community License provides free access to our entire product offering for individual developers and small businesses

What's included?

All products available in Essential Studio Enterprise Edition and Syncfusion Plus are included. This comprehensive offering includes over 650 components across 12 platforms, an easy-to-use big data platform, and much more. Support and updates are also included.

 

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FAQ

Who is eligible?

Individual developers or up to five users at companies with annual gross revenue below $1 million USD.

Can the products be used to build commercial applications?

Yes.

How long are the licenses valid ?

The community licenses do not expire. You will continue to receive support and updates for new versions.

Why are you doing this? What's the catch?

We loved what Microsoft did with Visual Studio Community Edition and decided to extend it to our products as well. There is no catch, but we would really appreciate it if you help spread the message through Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

We really like what you are doing. How can we help?

We hope to add even more value to this program in the future, but we need your help in reaching more developers. We would appreciate any help spreading the message through Twitter, Facebook, Google+, email, or blogs.

WOW. Now that's a gauntlet thrown! I wonder how the other top tier component vendors will respond?

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Visual Studio 2013 Community, Azure VM style...
Who can use VS 2013 Community Edition for free? (No, it's not everyone) Here's the official word...
This IS the Visual Studio you've been looking for... Hello Visual Studio Community Edition!

.NET Code Contracts are now OSS

CodeContractsDotNet/CodeContracts

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Code Contracts provide a language-agnostic way to express coding assumptions in .NET programs.

The contracts take the form of pre-conditions, post-conditions, and object invariants. Contracts act as checked documentation of your external and internal APIs. The contracts are used to improve testing via runtime checking, enable static contract verification, and documentation generation. Code Contracts bring the advantages of design-by-contract programming to all .NET programming languages. We currently provide three tools: Runtime Checking. Our binary rewriter modifies a program by injecting the contracts, which are checked as part of program execution. Rewritten programs improve testability: each contract acts as an oracle, giving a test run a pass/fail indication.

Automatic testing tools, such as Pex, take advantage of contracts to generate more meaningful unit tests by filtering out meaningless test arguments that don't satisfy the pre-conditions.

Static Checking. Our static checker can decide if there are any contract violations without even running the program! It checks for implicit contracts, such as null dereferences and array bounds, as well as the explicit contracts.

Documentation Generation. Our documentation generator augments existing XML doc files with contract information. There are also new style sheets that can be used with Sandcastle so that the generated documentation pages have contract sections.

Quick Links

Nice to see this open sourced, given the recent silence about it...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
.Net Code Contracts + XML Comments = (as good as) peanut butter and chocolate?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Predictive Models? Machine Learning? .NET App? Free Redist? Syncfusion has something you might like...

Deploy predictive models inside .NET applications

Dear customer,

We are excited to announce that we have shipped a breakthrough product that allows you to deploy predictive analytics solutions inside .NET applications.

Predictive modeling

What if you could use existing information to make predictions? Predictive modeling is truly one of the best-kept secrets. It has been used for decades by the largest firms in the world, enabling them to make smart, data-driven decisions. However, in spite of such tremendous benefits, few organizations have been able to justify the costs associated with modeling and deployment.

Times have changed. There are now a variety of modeling environments available to suit every budget. R is completely free and can produce excellent models. SPSS and SAS are leading commercial options.

Once you build and validate a model that works for your needs, you will need to deploy it within your .NET application. This task is often challenging and one in which the most fees lurk. You have to invoke the modeling environment’s runtime in most cases, and this often presents expensive commercial licensing costs and significant technical hurdles.

Essential Predictive Analytics changes everything

Essential Predictive Analytics from Syncfusion changes all this. You can now build models using any environment including R, SAS and SPSS, and then deploy with no dependency on these environments. The developed model are serialized in the open Predictive Model Markup Language (PMML) format. Essential Predictive Analytics includes a .NET execution engine that can execute the PMML model and provide real-time results from within your .NET applications without any third party dependencies.

Essential Predictive Analytics is included with Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition (ESEE). As with the rest of ESEE, there are absolutely no runtime fees or royalties whether you deliver to a small group of users or to millions around the world....

Syncfusion - Essential Predictive Analytics

Make data-driven decisions

In today’s data-driven world, the most successful companies will be those that utilize available data to make timely data-driven decisions. A common example would be to analyze the purchasing habits of shoppers and providing relevant coupons to get them to buy related products. Another example – what if you could build a model that could accurately predict which of your customers are likely to stop using your product or service? You already have information on customers who stopped using your service in the past. What if you could build a model that learns from past data and can then be put to work to stop churn before it happens? With Essential Predictive Analytics, you can.

 

Model using R, SAS, and SPSS and deploy using .NET

Easily develop powerful models to predict the future based on past data using R, SAS, or SPSS. The developed model can then be serialized in Predictive Model Markup Language (PMML) format. Essential Predictive Analytics includes a .NET execution engine that can execute the PMML model and provide real-time results from within your .NET applications without any third-party dependencies.

 

Absolutely no deployment fees

Essential Predictive Analytics is included with Syncfusion Essential Studio. As with the rest of Essential Studio there are absolutely no runtime fees or royalties whether you deliver to a small group of users or to millions around the planet. Also, because there is no third-party dependency once the modeling is done, you pay no runtime fees to any other vendors. You simply produce the model using the environment of your choice and Essential Predictive Analytics will take it from there.

Truly useful models

Predictive modeling is truly one of the best kept secrets around.Companies that use predictive modeling are smarter than those that don’t. They know the right answers based on data. They make smarter decisions. In spite of such tremendous benefits, predictive modeling has long been the preserve of a select few organizations that were able to afford modeling and deployment solutions. Today, there is no reason to wait. R is completely free and can produce excellent models that can be deployed with ease using Essential Predictive Analytics.

...

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Now that's different and could be very, very awesome. While there are open source like solutions, I don't know if there's anything like this. It's part of their $1995 Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition, which isn't cheap, but it IS a free redist, which is huge AND compared to other commercial solutions, pretty cheap (and plus you get everything else that's in that suite too!

To get a nice feel for this, check out their demo;

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I'm hoping to take a much closer look at this in the coming weeks... :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Lucian Wischik highlights the new features in Visual Basic 14

The Visual Basic Team - New Language Features in Visual Basic 14

"Visual Basic 14" is the version of Visual Basic that will ship with Visual Studio 2015. In this blog post I'll talk specifically about the VB language improvements in this release. (Separately, there are a whole host of IDE and project-system improvements as well). There are two overall themes to the language improvements:

(1) Make common coding patterns a little cleaner, with easy-to-grasp syntax

(2) Fix up some irritating corners of the language that you probably already expected to work.

This release will be easier to digest than was Visual Basic 12, with its introduction of async! (The version number of Visual Basic has gone straight from 12 to 14, skipping 13. We did this to keep in line with the version numbering of Visual Studio itself.)

I'll only talk here about the most important new language features. For a full exhaustive list, look at roslyn.codeplex.com > Documentation > Language Features.

(Note: I've used animated gifs in this blog-post because the language features shine the best when you see them in action. The longest gif is only 8 seconds so if you miss the start, keep watching! If you don't like the animation, please see the version of this post with still before/after pictures.

The ?. operator

The new ?. operator is an easier way to check whether something is null before dotting into it. ...

The NameOf operator ...

String Interpolation

String interpolation is my favourite feature this release. I know that ?. is more powerful, and nameof() will make my code more robust, but every time I type an interpolated string it gives me a little shiver of excitement! Here's how it looks: ...

Multiline Strings

You used to have to use cumbersome workarounds to get multiline strings in VB. Thankfully VB14 now supports multiline strings literals directly: ...

Readonly Auto-properties

We've made it considerably easier to write readonly auto-properties. Here's how you do it:...

Comments

Comments are now handled better in statements that split over multiple lines. This is particularly nice for LINQ expressions. Look at these "before" and "after" videos... previously it was simply an error to include these comments: ...

image..."

Love to see VB continue to get some love... :)

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

XML Notepad (fka XML Notepad 2007) gets some rev love, now v2.6 (& .NET 4.0 and bug squashing)

Software Complexity - Update to XML Notepad

As  XML has exploded across the planet I continue to get many requests for improvements to my XML Notepad of 2007.  The tool has been downloaded over a million times, so I figured it's time to show it some love and fix some bugs.  In the process I updated it to NET 4.0 using VS 2013.  I was amazed how everything from back then still works, including the Unit Tests.  That is pretty amazing platform compatibility.  Windows is a great platform and Visual Studio is still best of breed for software development, and I still love C#.

...

You can download it from here; Welcome to Microsoft XML Notepad

Microsoft XML Notepad is a lightweight and fast tool for editing XML documents. XML has proliferated the planet and XML Notepad has been downloaded over a million times!

Or you can head over to the Project's CodePlex repo;

XML Notepad

XML Notepad provides a simple intuitive User Interface for browsing and editing XML documents.

This application is built using .NET Framework 4.0 in C#.

See XML Notepad Design for information about how this application is built.

The downloadable installer for the latest version is available.

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When I find an interesting project I'll usually try to grab an Feed for it, so I can track updates, releases, etc. I was pleasantly surprised when the CodePlex feed for this project suddenly became active with check-ins, and then this official release.

 

Related Past Post XRef:
XML Notepad 2007 Source Now Available on CodePlex
XML Notepad 2007 2.3 Released

TFS Word Add-In is now an OSS "Sample"

Willy's Reflections - Visual Studio ALM Rangers - Team Foundation Server Word Add-in goes OSS as a “sample”

We are pleased to announce that the release of Team Foundation Server Word Add-in as a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution. Moving to OSS will allow the community to use it in their own ways

...

Team Foundation Server Word Add-in - Version 1.2 OSS Word 2013 TFS 2013

Release Notes

Welcome to the Visual Studio Team Foundation Server Word Add-in
The Team Foundation Server Word Add-In is a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution. Moving to OSS will allow the community to use it in their own ways.
Review these and other solutions, if you need a production Team Foundation Server and Microsoft Word integration:

Also bookmark Visual Studio ALM Community Widgets for community widgets and tools.

Source Code
This package contains the same code which was checked in to version control when we released the source code. This is the only and last download package for this project.

Supported Environments

  • Microsoft Office Word 2013 (32-bit, 64-bit)
  • Team Foundation Server 2013 Object Model

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Given the commercial products that do what this Add-in does and more, and that it had kind of been languishing for a bit, I think it's pretty cool that the ALM Ranger Team bit the bullet and instead of just killing it, released it as OSS/Prototype/Sample/Example-ware. I did have to laugh at the emphasis on "as a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution." That so sounds like some of the utilities/apps/etc I've released. :)

Look, if you don't want to pay for a solution (we'll leave it aside as to why is there a supported/free Excel Add-in for TFS and not one for Word... grumble... grumble) you now have this, with the source, so run with it...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
From TFS to Word and back again... AIT WordToTFS 2010 (Reg-ware)
“Team for Word” hooks Word to Team Foundation Server for free (source available too, GPLv2)
Access TFS from Word 2003...

Monday, December 01, 2014

Visual Studio 2013.2+ and 2015 Child Process Debugging Power Tool

Microsoft Application Lifecycle Management - Introducing the Child Process Debugging Power Tool

We’ve heard your feedback that you want the Visual Studio debugger to support child process debugging. Child process debugging means that when the application you are debugging creates another process, Visual Studio will detect this and automatically attach a debugger to the newly created process as well. To address this we’re releasing a power tool for Visual Studio that will enable you to do just this. Some important things to note:

  • Download the tool from the Visual Studio Gallery
  • The power tool requires at least Visual Studio 2013 Update 2 (will work with any higher update version and Visual Studio 2015)
  • The tool works for both launching projects (F5), and for attaching to processes
  • It requires a native debugger. This means if you are debugging .NET code, you must choose to enable mixed mode debugging (so managed and native)—this is done from the “Debug” tab on the project properties page (for most managed project types this is done by checking the “Enable native code debugging” checkbox under the “Enable debuggers” section of the page)

Once you install the power tool from the Visual Studio Gallery, a new menu item will appear on the “Debug” menu under the “Other Debug Targets” sub-menu.

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This is one of those tools where if you've wanted it you have REALLY want it, and if not, you could care less. If you are one of the "Care Less'ers," just favorite this for now, you might very well need this one day (I don't need to tell the Care'ers because they left this page at first read to go download it... :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Microsoft gets wild on GitHub - Repo-repo of the Day: microsoft.github.io

microsoft.github.io

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Now that's allot of repo's. I had to smile that the code behind microsoft.github.io is, of course, hosted on GitHub.

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So do you believe yet that Microsoft, well at least DevDiv, is going all OSS out?

Check it out there's a roadmap for WPF (and no, it's not to the cemetery ;)

.NET Framework Blog - The Roadmap for WPF

When we introduced WPF back in 2006 (.NET 3.0), the response was absolutely phenomenal. Enterprises, ISV’s, and Microsoft Partners have made the technology central to their business, building amazing vertical solutions and mission critical applications for their customers. This momentum carries forward to today – 10% of all newly created projects in Visual Studio 2013 over the past 60 days are WPF. WPF has amassed a passionate, vibrant, community that uses it to build data-centric desktop business applications on Windows. A recent example of this would be a new WPF application that was developed by our partners at InterKnowlogy. This application was recently used by CNN producers in the mid-term elections to upload, validate, and configure the data seen in the on-air election application. The election data is presented on CNN’s Magic Wall, which Microsoft’s Bing Pulse team helped to develop.

This post will address the roadmap for the WPF platform, including areas of investment we’re prioritizing and tooling improvements for upcoming releases of Visual Studio.

Areas of Platform Investment

Based on a survey we conducted at the //build conference earlier this year, UserVoice suggestions, and interviews with a large number of WPF developers across a variety of market segments over the past few months, we’ve prioritized the following areas for future investments to make WPF a better platform.

Performance: While WPF is actively being used to build large-scale, high performance applications like Visual Studio and Blend, further improving the performance of the platform based on customer feedback is a priority for us. Some key scenarios we are looking to optimize in this context are application startup, scrolling and virtualization performance of ItemsControls.

DirectX interoperability: The primary scenario of interest here is to make it seamless for WPF applications to interoperate with newer versions of DirectX.

Supporting modern hardware: Technologies like touch and high density displays are ubiquitous on modern devices. To support upgrading to newer hardware, it’s important that existing WPF applications can adapt to new hardware capabilities coming to desktop machines.

Tooling: We will continue to co-evolve the tools for WPF when appropriate, alongside new platforms like .NET/WINRT. This commitment is reflected in the tooling investments section of this post.

Investments in some of these areas might introduce dependencies on a particular OS version and/or have compatibility risks. For these cases, the features will light up based on the host OS and/or might require you to opt in to use the feature.

Current Progress on WPF

Let’s first address a common question regarding support: WPF is a quintessential part of the .NET Framework. The .NET Framework is defined as a component of the operating system, instead of an independent product. So, support for .NET Framework is driven by the support lifecycle policy of the Windows operating system. Extended support for the current recommended version of .NET (4.5.2) on Windows 8.1 is available till 2023. We will continue to fix security issues and bugs reported by customers that impact a large cross-section of our WPF customers.

... [Click through for the rest]

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Okay maybe this isn't a ringing endorsement or announcement for a big bang release, but heck at least there IS a roadmap and we ARE getting fixes and features! I think this is the first WPF news, truly WPF news, that I've seen in a while and it's good to see... :)

This IS the Visual Studio you've been looking for... Hello Visual Studio Community Edition!

While Visual Studio Express (Web, Windows, Windows Desktop) is nice and better since they moved from Language Express editions, the fact that the Express editions have always been pretty locked down only a very few VS Extensions were available made them kind of half-empty editions.

Today that changes.

The three Express editions are still available but we now also have a new expanded, and extendable, Visual Studio Community Edition (VSCE)! Best of all VSCE is available at the same price point of the Express editions, that is, free!

Free for indie's, single programmers, oss and such. Enterprises? You (we) still need to buy Pro/Premier/Ultimate to comply with the license.

This is essentially VS Pro, but free. Now, no more barriers, get your coding on!

Visual Studio Community 2013 with Update 4

Download Visual Studio Community for a free, full-featured IDE with powerful coding productivity features, cross-platform mobile development tools for Windows, iOS and Android, and access to thousands of extensions. This edition of Visual Studio is available at no cost for non-enterprise application development.

Sign in to Visual Studio within 30 days with your Microsoft account to synchronize your settings across multiple machines and register your product.

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

A glimpse at how Infragistics uses a C# to JavaScript transcompiler, powered by "Roslyn" (.NET Compiler Platform)

Infragistics - Mike Dour's Blog - Client-Side Excel Library CTP

If you haven’t seen it already, we recently released a 100% JavaScript-only, client-side Excel library for Ignite UI and I’m super excited about it. It allows you to read, write, and manipulate Excel workbooks. You can even create and solve formulas, all from inside the browser!! It was released in 14.2 as a CTP so we could get your feedback on it, but we will be releasing a complete RTM version in 15.1. You can find information and a live sample of it here. Definitely check out the overview page, which is packed with important information for using this library.

But that’s not even the coolest part. Not only did we deliver a purely JavaScript library for Excel workbooks, but it has all the features of our existing .NET Excel libraries. Did we re-write the entire C# Excel library in JavaScript to provide this level of feature parity? We could have, but it would have taken a lot of effort getting there not to mention the ongoing challenge of maintaining feature parity between the versions and addressing bugs in both implementations. So we came up with something better. We built a C# to JavaScript source-to-source compiler, or transcompiler. We have actually been using this for a few releases now to deliver some of the Ignite UI controls, but it was missing support for some constructs being used in the C# Excel library. So we really beefed up its language support as well as changed its semantic analysis engine. Now based on Microsoft’s .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") for C# semantic analysis, our transcompiler is able to read in our existing C# Excel library and generate semantically equivalent JavaScript code. There are still a few rough edges to smooth out, but we are currently addressing these issues to deliver the highest quality Excel library we can in the next release.

Unfortunately, one of those rough edges was in documentation. ...

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So hopefully this can help you get started with the Client-Side Excel library preview. There are a few things that don’t work properly yet (such as loading files with dates), but what we have provided should give you a good sense of what’s to come in 15.1. Please let us know what you think and if there are any pain points with the API or ways you think we can do better to make this library as easy as possible to use. Let us know at igniteui@infragistics.com. We look forward to your feedback. Thanks!

While you guys know I have something of a fanboy crush on Infragistics (come on, I've been using their stuff, in many forms since its VBX days... ;) that's not why I'm blogging about this. What I wanted to highlight is how they are using .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") as their transcompiler to take the C# and generate JavaScript...

"...We built a C# to JavaScript source-to-source compiler, or transcompiler. We have actually been using this for a few releases now to deliver some of the Ignite UI controls, but it was missing support for some constructs being used in the C# Excel library. So we really beefed up its language support as well as changed its semantic analysis engine. Now based on Microsoft’s .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") for C# semantic analysis, our transcompiler is able to read in our existing C# Excel library and generate semantically equivalent JavaScript code. ..."

That's just cool. And something I wonder if they will productize? (If so, that wouldn't be cheap as I bet that's some serious IP). Still the fact they even share that this is some of their secret sauce is nice (see, I'm not a fanboy for just any reason.... ;)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

SharpDevelop 5.0 is Final as in Final, but "... not the final version of SharpDevelop"

SharpDevelop - SharpDevelop 5.0 Final

After five Betas and one RC we are finally hitting release for SharpDevelop 5.0. Here is a recap of some of the most important features and changes from the various development stages (in short):

Item #1 in this list definitely begs the question "What about VB.NET?" I'd like to extend this question to "What's in the future of SharpDevelop?"

We have componentized SharpDevelop intentionally for what is coming now - the as-of-today core team moving to specific areas of our ecosystem. Think ILSpy. Think AvalonEdit. Yes, this means that the IDE iself is going to take a back seat. There are a couple of reasons for this decision...

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Long story short - SharpDevelop is far from "done" (we'd never claim that), but we (the current core team) are realigning our efforts for visibility in the near term. This does not mean SharpDevelop is on "life support" or "dead". It means that bug fixing, small improvements and minor features have priority. Big shiny new things are up to contributions which we are more than happy to accept and help with, simply ping us on the developer mailing list to get started.

Like the post title says: 5.0 final, and not the final version of SharpDevelop. ...

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I've only been watching this project for a decade and they are only on v5? (cough.... slow pokes... cough)? Just Kidding! These guys rock, with not only an awesome IDE (that's free and OSS), but in all other projects under their belt, like Avalon, ILSpy, etc. And their call out to the community for contributions is very valid. If there's a missing feature, "Don't whine, do..." :)

 

Related Past Post XRef:
SharpDevelop 5 goes MIT and Beta 1 too!
SharpDevelop gets T4 support
NuGet isn’t just for Visual Studio anymore… NuGet coming soon to SharpDevelop
NuGet your Avalon (SharpDevelop’s AvalonEdit and ICSharpCode.TextEditor, plus samples, are now available via NuGet)
SharpDevelop (aka #develop) 3.0 RTM’s
SharpDevelop for Applications (SDA)
Web Development with SharpDevelop, Web Matrix, and DBGCLR
SourceForge.net: #develop 1.0.2a stopgap release
SourceForge.net: #develop 1.0.2 available for download
SharpDevelop 1.0 Released