June, 2008

Most Recent Posts
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Windows Vista Facts Speak to Many Advantages

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    When we released Windows Vista, security was clearly a top priority. However, one of the implications of the increased focus on security was that compatibility with Windows Vista was not where we wanted it to be at launch. Over the past eighteen months, Microsoft and our partners have made tremendous progress in compatibility, performance, and battery life. Here are updates on a few key facts: Windows Vista now supports more than 77,000 printers, cameras, speakers and other devices. More...
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    Patent Filed for Digital Manners Policy

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    Mobile devices can help people become more respectful when a patent filed by Microsoft comes to cell phones near you. Digital Manners Policy (DMP) address some of the security and privacy concerns resulting from mobile devices, such concerns ranging from unintentional rudeness to critical security and privacy matters. The patent abstract states: The present invention includes methods and technologies for defining and administering device manners policy ("DMP"), propagating DMP, reception and...
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    Parallel Extensions CTP Ships

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    This week S. Somasegar , Senior Vice President Developer Division, announced on his blog that we've released an update to the community technology preview (CTP) of Parallel Extensions to the .NET Framework. Parallel Extensions simplifies development of concurrent applications by providing library-based support for introducing concurrency into applications written with any .NET language, including C# and Visual Basic.NET. The CTP updates the November CTP with bits for Task Parallel Library ...
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    46 New Tutorials Available on ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit

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    The ASP.NET team has just a new series of 46 tutorials that will explore techniques for implementing the different controls in the ASP.NET AJAX Control Toolkit. These tutorials are geared to be concise and provide step-by-step instructions with plenty of screen shots to walk you through the process visually. Each tutorial is available in Visual Basic and Visual C# versions and includes a download of the complete code used. You can access each tutorial from ASP.NET AJAX Control Tutorials . The...
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    Contributions to Silverlight Community Recognized

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    We are pleased to introduce the Silverlight Community Recognition Program for the Silverlight Developer site. In the Silverlight community we have a number of people whose contributions help developers from all over the world. As the site continues to grow, we want to recognize each person’s contribution to its success. The program gives points for community participation. And if you've been participating, we've already awarded points for your activities. Visit the Hall of Fame page and view the...
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    Develop Real World Apps with S+S Blueprints

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    Building Software-plus-Services (S+S) applications is getting easier with S+S Blueprints. S+S is about providing your customers with choices of on premises or hosted applications. The S+S Blueprints are a series of open source frameworks and guidance packages to make it easier to build real-world S+S applications. Blueprints include source code, utilities, guidance, structured step-by-step workflow-based guidance and tools delivered within Visual Studio 2008. Each Software-plus-Services Blueprint...
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    Best Practices Security Tools Help ISVs Protect Against Web Attacks

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    Microsoft Security Advisory (954462): Rise in SQL Injectsion Attacks Exploiting Unverified User Data provides advice and tools to protect against a rise in SQL injection attacks. A recent escalation in attacks on Web sites exploits unverified user data input. The attacks target Web sites that do not follow secure coding practices for accessing and manipulating data stored in a relational database. But the vulnerability is not exploited in Web applications that follow best practices to verify user...
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    Incubation Weeks Redux

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    I was fortunate enough to have participated in 2 Incubation Weeks at the Microsoft Technology Centers in Boston and Silicon Valley , and would like to personally thank everyone who participated in and supported the events. If you're not familiar with the concept, Incubation Weeks are intended to help startups explore early-stage development of their product/service ideas using Microsoft tools and technologies (see http://www.masshightech.com/stories/2008/06/16/weekly12-New-Microsoft-software-incubation...
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    Reflections on Bill Gates Last Day

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    Bill Gates last day is tomorrow. A lot of people have a Bill Gates story. And I welcome that you add your favorite Bill Gates story as comment to this blog entry. My BillG story is unremarkable, but he nevertheless made a place for me in technology. I saw Bill Gates present at a conference where he was promoting OS/2 in what was then Mountain View, CA before it was called Silicon Valley. He was not the keynoter. Instead, the presentation was to about 100 or so of us in a very crowded break...
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    Resources to help justify Team System for your Organization

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    We recently put this list of resources together for an ISV. Here's some great info, if you are in the process of evaluating or trying to bring Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) into your organization. These links provide great support when you are creating a cost benefit analysis. All of my ISV's have gone through this process in order to get management to approve a new Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) solution. Cost Benefit Analysis – ROI, Case Studies, ALM Best Practices, ALM Assessment...
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    Hyper-V RTM Bits Available

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    The highly anticipated Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V is now shipping! ISVs use virtualization as a way to ship fully configured applications to customers and develop and test their applications. Customers can use virtualization as a way to consolidate servers and provide business continuity. Using virtual machines, development staffs can create and test a wide variety of scenarios in a safe, self-contained environment that accurately approximates the operation of physical servers and clients...
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    Microsoft Dynamics AX 2009 Virtual PC Image posted to MBS Partnersource

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    We have posted the VPC image for Dynamics AX 2009 to Partnersource which includes many additional software components to use in sales demonstrations. You can get the link from this url - http://blogs.msdn.com/controlpanel/blogs/posteditor.aspx?SelectedNavItem=Posts&sectionid=9654&postid=8658378 Thanks John O'Donnell | Microsoft Dynamics ISV Architect Evangelist | Microsoft Corporation http://blogs.msdn.com/jodonnell | http://blogs.msdn.com/usisvde
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    Map your Data – Part 3

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    Sorry I've been away from this, but time to get back at it.  There have been a number of highly positive developments on this topic in the interim - can't wait to share them with you. In my first post in this series, I motivated why you might want to use WPF/SL to plot data on map.  In my second post , I showed how you could find the correct x+y pixel coordinate to plot a geocoded lat+long point on a canvas in WPF/SL. I’ll get to the options available to render a map soon, but before that...
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    Map your Data – Part 4

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    In my last post , I introduced the SQL 2008 spatial data types and scratched the surface of their features and power.  While those types work great within SQL 2008 (either in T-SQL or in SQL CLR methods), I haven’t yet found a way to consume these types from outside SQL 2008 (in fact, I don’t believe that the SQL 2008 team intends for us to do so.) Fortunately, SQL 2008 emits geography/geometry data in the well known text (WKT) format (it isn’t even necessary to ToString(..) it), and that form...
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Map your Data – Part 5

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    In my last post , I showed how to process WKT emitted by SQL 2008 spatial types in WPF/SL.  The next step in turning our freshly parsed lat+long pairs into System.Windows.Shapes. private static List<System.Windows.Shapes.Polygon> CreateMapPolygons(MyModel model, Style polygonStyle) {     if (model           == null) return null;     if (model.MapBricks == null) return null;     if (polygonStyle   ...
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Map your Data – Part 6

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    In the previous posts in this series, I showed how to retrieve spatial data from SQL 2008, transform it into pixel coordinates, and to construct a shape from it which could be added to a WPF or SL canvas.  Even though you could produce a recognizable map image from that alone, it’s much more compelling to plot this over a map. There are few options here for how you might do this, and I’ll discuss each of these in turn. You could: Plot your data over a cached image of a map with a known center...
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    Map your Data – Part 7

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    In my last post , I mentioned the MapPoint Web Service SDK as one of the options for rendering maps for usage in applications that do client-side plotting.  In case you’re not familiar with it, this is a web service with absolutely no client footprint.  Many folks think that a client side install of the shrink wrapped MapPoint desktop product is required to use this SDK – that is not the case. This SDK is great because it can render maps for download and deliver them to any platform capable...
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    Map your Data – Part 8

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    While the MapPoint Web Service SDK is highly cool and nice and lightweight, I gotten lots of requests about using this technique with Virtual Earth. At first I thought “sure – no problem – I’ll just grab a VisualBrush from the .NET Web Browser control and then point it to a web page hosting the VE control.”  It turned out to me much trickier than I expected (hardcore WPF folks are probably snickering at the naivete of my attempt…) Fortunately for me, I have friends who are much smarter than...
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Map your Data – Part 9

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    I realize that I had forgotten to cover geocoding, so I’ll discuss it here now.  Geocoding is simply the process of assigning latitude+longitude(+altitude) to geographic features. Many times when building apps of this type, you’ll be provided with vast quantities of geocoded data points in an easy-to-consume format.  Other times, you’ll be lucky to have an address. If that’s your situation, the MapPoint Web Service SDK provides geocoding that, given an address, will: return a lat+long return...
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Force directed layout --> tag cloud?

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    When I'm not doing mapping, I occasionally digress into other application scenarios. Of late, tag clouds have been all the rage, and yet, when recently faced with the challenge of implementing one, I realized that the layout algorithm is non-trivial. In the past, force directed layouts had been helpful, and so I thought of applying them here. If you're not familiar with the concept, the idea is to model an arbitray graph with nodes as charged particles connected by spring edges (see http://en...
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    Meet the new blogmaster - Murray Gordon

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    Well, I've had a blast with this blog over the past couple years, and hope it become a source of useful information for ISVs. My style was to let the team find its own style, but to also help guide posters to understand and respect the medium. I hope that we've achieved that to some extent. While I'll continue to post here, I'm handing over the stewardship of the blog to Murray Gordon. Murray's a recent addition to our team based in the southeast US, and he's been posting quite a bit of late....
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Map your Data – Part 10

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    In my last post , I mentioned that I might have some info on how to do client side mapping over Virtual Earth in Silverlight. I’m pleased to inform you that I do indeed, thanks to Adam Eversole and Jared Bienz. Adam had developed a prototype called VIEWS, and posted about its availability on an internal discussion list. Jared and I quickly downloaded it and were impressed by what we saw, but Jared took it a step further and did some refactoring to make the API more managed code friendly. The...
  • US ISV Evangelism

    Windows Roadmap Updated

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    Bill Veghte, Senior Vice President at Microsoft, explores the plans for Windows XP, progress with Windows Vista , and the view toward Windows 7 in an open letter to Windows customers. Security and other critical updates continue for Windows XP through 2014. Although the “end of sales” date is June 30, Veghte explains how customers can purchase Windows XP and under what circumstances. That said, there are several compelling reasons for Windows Vista, including security and compatibility. PCs...
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    Introduction into Testing Your .NET 3.5 Applications

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    Testing applications has often been an after-thought when building applications. But now many leading software companies build unit tests and are building applications using test-driven development. While these are not new ideas, this month's Visual Studio Magazine includes a step-by-step guide on how you can take advantage of the tools built into Visual Studio 2008 to automate testing your application. The article, entitied Test Your .NET 3.5 Apps , shows how to build your first test in both...
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    Windows SideShow for Mobile (Developers Beta)

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    This was a cool little drop that seems to have flown under the radar.  If you have a Vista laptop (and if you don’t then there’s something wrong) and a Windows Mobile Smartphone (see last comment) and they are paired via BlueTooth then this is for you.  The install is Sideshow for mobile and after you install the Office PowerPoint gadget you can control your PPT from your phone as well as see your speaker notes on the phone. Windows SideShow for Windows Mobile Developer Preview Office PowerPoint...
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