Yes, it's been awhile since my last blog entry. As you've probably read from other Whidbey grunts, the crunch time to the next milestone has pulled our heads out of the blogsphere.

Mostly I've been using this time to work on bugs and performance issues in the Whidbey profiler. Along the way, I've become familiar with a lot more of the profiler's code base. Of course, this knowledge means that I can steal bugs from a bigger range of coders. Still no UI bugs for me yet, however. :-) In addition, I've finally had a few chunks of time to get my head back into looking at post-Whidbey features. Although it takes awhile to re-wrap your head around a problem space, I find that the time off often gives valuable additional perspectives.

I have little emails to myself to remind me to blog about various topics, including the (all to many) ways that programs can emit diagnostic traces, as well as a useful tip when debugging multithreaded code. I really do intend to get to these topics soon and keep this blog interesting.

After my first holiday season here at MS, I see why so many people bail out for a week or two at the end of the year. Enough other people are on vacation that it's often difficult to make progress on any sort of group effort. For instance, I've had several bugs that I believe I've fixed, but am waiting on input from any of three other team members, all of who are out. Luckily, I've had enough solitary tasks that I made good progress even while other folks were out.

This week is a short one for me. Besides having today off, I'm off on Friday to have ossicular reconstruction tympanoplasty. In a nutshell, it's ear surgery to replace/repair the middle ear bones and hopefully improve my right ear hearing. A prior surgery a few months back replaced most of my original eardrum with a very thin cartilage graft. The surgeon said that my original eardrum had the consistency and the usefulness of wet tissue paper. With my new and improved eardrum now in place, this next surgery should put the "ear bone" mechanism back in place, and if all goes well, I'll hear better in my right ear than I have in 30+ years. If the surgery goes anything like the prior one, I should be up and about in 24 hours, and hopefully won't miss any work. (I get really bored recovering in bed. I'd rather just go in to work and get something useful done.)