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Showing posts from November, 2004

My feedback Center Experience

I ran into a bug (atleast that is what i think) while using SQL Mobile and .NET CF 2.0 and raised it at the MSDN Feedback Center. I am very glad to see the lightning speed with which the problem was resolved. I posted the error on 29th and there was resolution in 10 hrs FLAT... TRULY OUTSTANDING..

I produce the error and the resolution (resolved as non-reproducible) below:


Description:
Opened by abhishekK on 2004-11-29 at 05:14:16

I am building the Walkthrough Sample on Master Details Forms for SQL Mobile. I have enoucntered an error that i believe could be a bug in the data adapter. The Fill function of Adapter is raising an SQLCeException that is related to pointers.

Resolved as Not Reproduced by Microsoft on 2004-11-29 at 15:50:16

We've made a host of changes in this area since Beta 1 to improve stability of the master/details feature and are no longer able to reproduce this problem. You should see this issue resolved in the next community drop.Thanks for your comments,Neil
Ste…

Enterprise Development Reference Architecture (EDRA) Released

The goal of the project (codenamed ShadowFax) is to provide architectural guidance that an organization can use to standardize the development of distributed systems.
EDRA has been released by PAG group of Microsoft.
The EDRA provides architectural guidance that an enterprise can use to standardize the separation of business logic from infrastructure concerns with the development distributed systems. The key principles on which EDRA is based are:
· Separating the service interface from internal service implementation to allow for deployment scenarios optimized for scalability, reliability, security, performance, and availability.
· Separating business logic from cross-cutting concerns such as logging, monitoring, or raising business events.
· Separating business logic from the underlying transport so that multiple transports can be used to access a single service implementation.

you can directly use the artifacts of the project: extensible application frame…

The Da-Vinci Code - Virus spreads to me!

Started reading the Da-Vinci Code yesterday.. i am only half way at Chapter 33.. i find the book till now a mish mash of fiction blended with religion and art..
IMHO, the book's author is a believer of the "conspiracy" theory..
the book is definitely captivating given I started reading it at 10 PM and kept reading it till 1 AM :) The anticipation of something very "phenomenonal" just on the next page keeps the reader glued to the pages of the novel...
I heard people say it is a work of "real" nature and the presence of Fibonnaci Series, Divine Proportion etc are proofs of the same.. i say the book melds the science and fiction together very well..
There is lot of interesting facts too in the book like - the name of the Mona Lisa painting in France is La Giaconda, the life of Da vinci, the Vitruvian man, the origin of word "Silas" and the pagan philosophies (Hinduism seems very much a pagan religion to me!!)
Of course, i will have more to sa…

India Community Chats

We have launched the community chats for India.. wonder what is the difference between the community chat and an MSDN Chat? a very valid question that I will try to answer:
1. MSDN Chats were primarily developer chats around MS Dev tools and technologies. Community chats cover the rest of them that include products like Office, Windows and any other MS topic.. we are even encouraging non-technical topics like people's experience with MSN and other philosophies.
2. MSDN chats are primarily operated as an "expert" mode chat. In the chat all the attendees ask their questions and the expert answers them. In the community chat we let people share ideas and have a true "community" experience. There is a "leader" who takes leads in answering the questions and the chat is open for everyone else to contribute in answering the questions apart from just asking them.

The list of community chats due in the future are available here.

We count your community partici…

Vacation.. Postponed!

I am in Delhi (Oh!! Gurgaon to be precise) right now supposedly on vacation!

Duty called and I am back on work for this week.. the vacation has been put on hold till some time later.. for the next week :)

The good thing is I am glad to be back on work (i was kinda missing the break neck speed of the mails that I have become used to and the 50 odd replies that i do everyday!)
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the Journey to MVP Nomination Alerts

This MVP Nomination cycle we did a NEW thing! we sent everyone who requested alert notification on the MVP program in India an SMS (apart from the email).. actually, we have only sent invitations for MVP nominations to them this time (not open to public)!
This is the backstage story that enabled us to do that!

Well, the moment you press "Submit" button on the alerts page we get an email with the information neatly formatted. We accumulate the emails till we have something significant to do with the same e.g. send the MVP Nomination alert on SMS. . at this stage we needed to extract numerous mails in hundreds and parse them to get the mobile phone nos.
For this I wrote an Outlook Plugin using .NET 2.0 and VSTO 2.0. The way the plugin works is that it steps through the folder structure (that is mandated) and gets to the folder where the alerts information is stored. Then it looks up the body of the mail and parses the same using regular expression classes. The information is t…

WinAmp - The Closing of a Chapter

Heard about one of the core team members, Steve Gedikian, of the widely used WinAmp media player leaving the company - Nullsoft..
What impressed me most was the respect Steve has for the behemoth that AOL is..
It is a good read on what people feel leaving a product/company that had created a media revolution and the love/hate they feel for the same guy...
And on the future of Winamp from the blog:
I anticipate that Winamp will continue to limp along for a little while longer. With minor bug fixes and updates for some time to come. Over the long term, I anticipate Winamp's identity will change to fit the goals of those at AOL who don't really care what Winamp means to the millions of our loyal followers.
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This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.

So you are using Lookout?

I have been using Lookout for quite some time now and am extremely happy about it!! it has been saving a lot of time for me.. translate that to dollars and the saving is huge! but i guess everyone knows about it by now.. if you don't then you either don't use Outlook or you have a lot of time (so you don't care) or you are oblivious to the tools that can increase your productivity !!

Why this outdated post then?

I discovered that if you install Lookout, Outllook doens't shut down even when you close the application. it keeps running in the background! I didn't expect that. It is either by design or by coding error..

In my brush with Outlook programming it has come up again and again that if the Add-In doesn't unoad itself the application will fail to terminate and keep running in the background. If this is the case, then Lookout should better unload while Outlook exits..

If you want to close Outlook, use task manager to shut it down :)
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Wondering what happened to the MVP Nomination in Nov?

If you have been to the India MVP Page recently and visiting the page religiously in the past, you might have noticed that there is no MVP nomination that we are doing in this cycle..
As it says on the page, we are doing MVP Nomination by invitation only... There are primarily 2 reasons for the same:
We elicit MVP nominations at various opportunities (TechED, SAF, IDF etc) hoping to find any MVP candidate. The idea is to not let any potential candidate go unnoticed 'cause of lack of information.
The drawback is that we get lot of nominations with just name and email address and that sends the whole nomination in a big loop of soliciting more information, waiting, following up and so on.. And we have built up a huge collection of nominations that we are processing right now. Opening up the nomination for everyone will create a deluge that we won't be able to process with the detail we would like to.Most of the community candidates are well known and bubble up from one quarter o…

DPE Team Offsite

On Nov 2 and 3, the whole of the DPE team in India huddled into a room to discuss the team plans.. there are a lot of new people in the team and the Offsite helped to meet with them and get to know them...
Learnt a lot about the ambit if DPE activities and how we are organised.. i have heard it many times in MS that it is difficult to figure out what is everyone doing.. atleast for DPE team in India, I do have some clarity NOW!
Sunbhashini and myself made a presentation on MVP program and new community initiatives like Mileage and Alliance..
Mostly it was presentations on what everyone is doing or plans to do..
The fun was in food and go-karting...
Dinner at Samarkant and lunch at 100ft Restaurant were amazing..
My laurel from the Offsite: I am the fastest go carting person in DPE.. Scored 31.60 sec for a lap at Race Pace in RT Nagar.. i am reminded of my first roommate as a professional - heera (an avid go-karter with whom i had gone g-karting first time in Chennai!!) this win is ded…

My VSTO 2.0 start up pangs

OK.. so i heard Soma talk about the VSTO 2.0 that is much stable than VSTO with VS 2003. Wanted to develop 2 tools for long:
1. A button that will let me open 2 reply windows instead of one. i have a need for that. one for status intimation and one for action..
2. A program that scans a folder extracts all the mails and saves the content in the a file after parsing the mails..

Nice time to do so with Outlook 2003, VSTO 2.0 and Vs 2005.

After i spent some time looking for VSTO 2.0, i realised it gets installed as a part of VS 2005. You will need Office PIA for development. Install it from the Add/Remove Programs for Office and enable the .NET Programability feature.
For starters, currently VSTO 2.0 only supports Word and Excel. So, essentially i am creating interop assemblies again for Office 2003 (purpose of VSTO 2.0 LOST!!)
Starting with a new project of type "Shared Add-In" under Extensibility. One very important thing to remember:
DO NOT select "Enable Addin for use…