Brian Johnson's Startup Developer Blog

February, 2004


    The Five Testers from VC Answer a Couple of Questions

    Here's one:

    Answers to Comment Questions
    Is understanding the inner working of a compiler vital to compiler testing?
    I would say so, at least at some level. In a general sense, I would say it's hard to be really successful at testing anything without understanding the domain area of what you are testing. That said, I don't think many folks came to our compiler test teams with a lot of understanding of the inner workings of a compiler, especially the back end. This is something that we pick up from doing the work.

    This blog provides some really interesting insight into what goes on in testing Visual C++. I'm looking forward to seeing where they go with this.

    Mike Nash Chat Page

    Jana has put together a page where you can find information about the monthly chats hosted by Microsoft Security Business Unit Vice President Mike Nash. Mike really puts a lot into these and he will answer your questions. You can add the upcoming chats to your Outlook calendar from this page, and there's also a link to an archives page where you can read through any chats you might have missed.
    Microsoft Security Chat Series
    ... Microsoft is working hard to improve security and Mike and his team invite you to join them in a candid Q&A session. Ask us your tough questions; share with us what is going well and what needs improvement. This is your chance to talk up front with the leading security minds at Microsoft.

    Visual Basic Generics

    Duncan has a cool little sample showing generics in VB Whidbey. Very clever.

    Security Webcast Week Ends Tomorrow

    Just a heads up, there is one more day left of Security Webcast Week. You can catch one of the three remaining sessions live tomorrow. The Webcasts that have already occurred are comming online as on-demand Webasts fairly quickly and you can find those through the same set of links.

    You can find a full list of on-demand Webcasts here. That's generally a great place to browse for content if you're looking to learn something new.

    Visual C++ .NET 2003 Kick Start Chapter Online

    Chapter 3 of Kate Gregory's book, Microsoft Visual C++ .NET 2003 Kick Start, is available on The Code Project. This one covers the .NET Base Class Libraries.
    Microsoft Visual C++ .NET 2003 Kick Start Chapter 3: The .NET Base Class Libraries
    From the chapter:
    The C++ Advantage - C++ can use the same class libraries as C# and VB.NET. Does it work the other way around? No. There are libraries of unmanaged code available from managed C++ that cannot be called from Visual Basic or C#—ATL and MFC are just two examples. However, it's unlikely that a Visual Basic or C# programmer would want to use those libraries, because their functionality is provided elsewhere; the capability to call them from managed C++ helps simplify a port from unmanaged to managed C++.

    Matt Lyons on MSDN TV on Code Access Security

    Matt did part of the security talk at the PDC and he's got a new talk available on MSDN TV. He does a nice job on these.
    Basic Principles of Code Access Security
    Matt Lyons presents some of the basic principles of CAS - in particular, the effects of default CAS policy - and how it relates to the average .NET developer.

    Stan Lippman on the Managed Extension Reference Array Syntax

    Stan Lippman has a new posting on the C++/CLI declaration of managed array objects:
    C++/CLI revision of the Managed Extension Reference Array Syntax
    ...This has been simplified in the revised language design, in which we use a template-like declaration to mirror the STL vector declaration. The first parameter indicates the element type. The second parameter specifies the array dimension [defaults to 1, of course]. The array object itself is a reference type and so must be given a hat. If the element type is also a reference type, then that, too, must be so marked...

    WinDbg Tutorial on Code Project

    Excellent start on The Code Project to a multi-part tutorial on debugging with WinDbg.
    Windows Debuggers: Part 1: A Windbg Tutorial
    In my professional career, I have seen most of us use Visual Studio for debugging but not many of the other debuggers that come for free. You may want such a debugger for many reasons, for example, on your home pc which you do not use for development but on which a certain program crashes from time to time.
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