A code monkey in Research

One developer's view of (a little bit of) Microsoft Research, Cambridge

  • A code monkey in Research

    More easy IPC

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    Last time I talked about .NET Remoting and concluded that it was very nice for .NET to .NET communication, but not much use for anything else - and it's deprecated too. How's a lazy programmer like me meant to get other sorts of applications talking to...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Easy peasy IPC-sy

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    Windows provides a wide range of inter process communication mechanisms, from very low level sockets (which can easily be used from managed applications too) to much more sophisticated WCF . However, the lighter weight ones tend to require a lot of fiddling...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Phone magic

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    If you've never come across Scam School before, do take a look at it - it normally offers a bit of entertainment on a Thursday. One in particular caught my eye recently: there have been a few episodes using smart phones as props in magic tricks, but in...
  • A code monkey in Research

    What's in a window?

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    It's probably not too surprising that one of the important bits of functionality in Project Colletta is relating a window on the screen (a HWND to be precise) to a document, in particular, to the file path of the document appearing in that window. The...
  • A code monkey in Research

    I've only ever written one application

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    Actually, I mean, I've only ever written one application startup - in the same way I've only ever written two make files, one for applications and one for libraries, I just keep changing the words... OK, that's obviously a facetious statement, but it...
  • A code monkey in Research

    NoReplyAll Lite

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    So far, all of the Office add-in work I've been talking about here has been based on VSTO, but some users of NoReplyAll have complained about having to install the .NET Framework (or, in some cases, install whatever version I'd chosen to use, because...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Collecting URLs part 2

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    Using Ctrl-Shift-C is quick and convenient, but only if you remember it; and moving the mouse pointer all the way down to the Notification Area really is far too much like hard work. How about adding a control to the browser itself? Well, it's pretty...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Collecting URLs

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    Another one of those itches that need to be scratched: someone posted a query internally asking for tools that would copy URLs for all open browser windows to the clipboard. I don't know if such a tool exists but I thought it would be a fun exercise to...
  • A code monkey in Research

    NoReplyAll Add-In 3.1

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    A new release is available today: fixed some resource locking problems , added support for 64 bit Outlook in the installer , and added self-BCC .
  • A code monkey in Research

    Add-in for 64 and 32 bit Office

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    My NoReplyAll add-in , which I've talked about before, uses absolutely nothing that ties it to 32 or 64 bit Outlook - it's all "anycpu" with no architecture specific dependencies. However, the latest installer is 32 bit, with the result that the add-in...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Talking to myself

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    Someone at work here presented me with a poser: make Outlook include one's own email address as a BCC when sending an email. I know you can check a box to get Outlook to CC yourself, and you can also get Outlook to save messages in the Sent Items folder...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Doppler Four

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    Last time I had the basic Windows Store DirectX Doppler app working, and now it's time to add the shader. To begin, effects are applied to images, which means I need to draw the waves on to some off-screen bitmap, and then render that via an effect. I...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Doppler Three

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    The Doppler waves program has two bits of UI really: the "dynamic" wave drawing part, and the user interaction part, namely the slider. I could recreate a slider myself, or use some other interaction mechanism in my C++ DirectX variant of the program...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Windows Phone lockscreen

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    Windows Phone 8 brings with it the ability for a program to set the lockscreen picture; there are already a bunch of apps in the store that cycle through images (including the built in ability to grab pictures from the Bing home page) - however, none...
  • A code monkey in Research

    NoReplyAll Add-In 3.0

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    A new version of the add-in is now available. The significant change is in the installation process, from plain (and simple!) ClickOnce to MSI, as described in my last post . The new version should load faster (for a start, Outlook 2013 doesn't wag...
  • A code monkey in Research

    WiX installer for VSTO projects

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    A few people have been asking me for something akin to an MSI-based installer for my NoReplyAll tool but I've not been able to treat this as particularly high priority. Those of you with Office 2013 might have noticed Outlook pointing the finger of shame...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Doppler Two

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    Last time , I talked about a WPF application to demonstrate the Doppler effect; this time I'm going to look at a Win8 app. The starting point is the C# Windows Store application project template, of course, and then almost exactly the same Xaml content...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Research Next

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    Research Next is a chance for us at Microsoft Research Cambridge to show off some of the work we do - Project Colletta gets a brief outing at the most recent, held a couple of weeks ago. If you look carefully, you'll see that it's working with Office...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Doppler One

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    Professor Chris Bishop is well known round here for giving entertaining science talks aimed at young people - a few years ago he presented the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures . Every so often Chris pops into my office to talk about a bit of software...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Is your "new" menu too long?

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    Something that I find annoying is how many programs add items to the Windows Explorer "New" submenu ("New item" on the Windows 8 Explorer ribbon, or right click in the Explorer window and select "New") that I really never, or very seldom, want to create...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Updating NoReplyAll for Outlook 2013

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    As I mentioned in an earlier post , Outlook 2013 brings a few new features which I need to integrate with in NoReplyAll ., the main one being ribbon changes when inline responses are used. The What's new for Outlook 2013 developers article describes...
  • A code monkey in Research

    NoReplyAll Add-In 2.6.1

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    A new version is now available for download: this one supports the Outlook 2013 preview, and includes a few changes to the handling of reply states of meeting requests. Outlook 2013 includes a missing attachment check, so I've disabled it in the...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Version number update tool for Visual Studio 2012

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    Quite a while ago I presented a scrappy little macro I created to update version numbers in multiple Visual Studio projects. At the time I commented that Visual Studio 11 wouldn't be supporting macros so, now that VS2012 has RTM'd , here's a "port" to...
  • A code monkey in Research

    Outlook 2013 and NoReplyAll

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    As I'm sure you've noticed by now, the Office 2013 Preview is now available . I've given my NoReplyAll Add-In a spin and it broadly seems to function as desired - three areas that need a bit of work are: It seems that Outlook 2013 includes a missing...
  • A code monkey in Research

    There's more to Outlook than MailItems

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    I've published a new version of the NoReplyAll Outlook add-in with pretty much the only change being the addition of a no-forward button to meeting requests. As indicated in a couple of previous posts , everything in the add-in until this point has...
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