Casting in VB.NET

OK – VB.NET is on the subject again. As I remember there was two things that led to big arguments and confusions: Casting and arrays. I’ve already blogged about how arrays are handled here. Here is an article that describes how casting is done in VB.NET. It also compares with C# which great for understanding. And here is the points in short: And just for the record… VB.NET delenda est…I don’t like using it - but I have to.
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PowerCommands for Visual Studio 2008

I’m back with Visual Studio 2008 after a few months only doing Visual Studio 2010 stuff. And… you miss some stuff. Things get old so fast. Sad. Here’s some nifty tools that get you a bit closer; PowerCommands for Visual Studio 2008. Aaah – now it feels a bit better.
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Synchronization for consultants – it works!

I am so proud. My evil scheme to keep my calendar(s) in sync got tested for real today. Got to new customer. Installed Outlook to Google Calendar. Started Outlook. Viola! All my events from my other calendars in place with the ones from my customer. So now they will not book me on days when I have other assignments etc. The only thing is that you cannot think to much about it because it will drive you mad. My customer Outlook is synched with Gmail, my Avega outlook is also synched with the same account to Gmail. My phone synchs to Gmail… But it works. ‘Nuff said.
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AutoMapper – get rid of your tedious mapping code

One thing that I really love being on a contract is that you’re almost immediately is forced to find solutions, whereas on a leisure project you rather do something else… Here is another great tool; AutoMapper. It’s a framework that do all of that tedious mapping code you’re doing in for ViewModels or Messages in services. Boring and tedious to write and test. AutoMapper takes care of that – using a lot of Conventions. Be sure to see the screencast that introduce a lot of the possibilities.
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SpecFlow BDD .NET-style

As you could read in my latest post I have be a bit frustrated with TDD and where to start, lately. BDD is of course the answer to that. But I must say that the frameworks are available to the .NET crowd is a bit weird. Either you have some really funky syntax (hey Anders, a new colleague and great guy) or it’s build on top on other stuff and where hard to work with. I simply cannot see myself introduce any ordinary programmers to any of that. But here is something that looks more like it… a bit at least; SpecFlow. It’s also built with an eye too RSpec, Cucumber and Ruby but build in the style of .NET and C#. Here is a (silent) screencast, something about syntax and workflow and some great resources. From this it even looks that they support Swedish… Great work guys! I’ll be...
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ASP.NET MVC, StructureMap and … TDD?

I’ve been playing around a bit with ASP.NET MVC and StructureMap (an IOC container). It all looks very nice and works wonder. During this I ran into an excellent blog post by Elija Manor on wiring StructureMap and ASP.NET MVC together. Beware of the favicon-problem though. Again – i use NHibernate and Fluent NHibernate which so much nicer than the XML-stuff. The critics to Fluent NHibernate says that you cannot reach all functionality from Fluent NHibernate, but here is an example on how to set specific properties in your configuration. Helped me through this example. Also found some great code examples from the TekPub NHibnernate series here. OK – I’ve added “TDD?” in the title. I love TDD and it’s my preferred way of doing code, but I have a problem (to quote a thinker). I think TDD doesn’t help my through the broader strokes of my application. Where do...
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Visual Studio 2010 web.config transformation

I happened to run into a feature I didn’t know of… Visual Studio 2010 (beta still… soon RC) includes a function for managing different .config-files for different environments. And support for transforming them on build/publish. Here is a MSDN-article that introduces the concept and use it. And here is an article on the subject. Pretty cool since up to now you’ve had to do it manually with build-tasks… Not so trivial.
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NUnit and the constraint based model

At the Elevate presentation yesterday I learned a lot about C#3/4 by Magnus Lidbom. But as a side-effect I also picked up a nifty syntax for NUnit assertions. It’s called Constraint-based Assertion Model and has been around since NUnit 2.4. Which shows that I am a slow adopter… Sad. OK – what’s the deal with it? It gives you a almost fluent interface to assertions. Here is an example on how to do a simple assertion in the old style: And here is the same assertion in the Constraint-based version: Now read it out loud; Assert… That … i … is equal to 10. Nice, isn’t it? I like that a lot.
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Inbox zero

First, admit that the title alone is very tempting… You want it, you need it… but how to get it? How do you manage the steady flow of mail and requests during a day? How do you stay afloat? That’s what you can learn from picking up on the inbox zero concept. I first learned about this concept at a presentation by Scott Hanselmann at ÖreDev. You can see this presentation here. Mr Hanselmann has put out some other advices that are well worth reading as well. I then realized that the concept is older than that presentation and was invented by Merlin Mann. He even has a site on the subject; InboxZero.com. But he looks so crazy on that video that I didn’t dare watch it ;) Here is a great presentation Merlin Mann did at Google. It will take you through the basic rules and improve your mail...
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