# 26 Haziran 2008 Perşembe
For VS2008: ActiveWriter Preview 4.1.rar (282.73 KB)
I'm not updating 2005 version anymore.

What's New:
  • Optionally generates classes implementing INotifyPropertyChanging.
  • Contrib-117: Database and designer column order is not in sync
  • Added "Nested" to Common.ARAttributes (Patch: Roberto Paterlini)
  • Swapped parameters in new ArgumentNullException (Patch: Roberto Paterlini)
  • Changed in-memory code compilation error reporting to give full details of the internal compile process. No more ExceptionCollection's.
  • Contrib-118: Activewriter errors in combination with VisualSVN (Patch: Visual SVN Team)
  • Changed the temporary file generation to use \obj folder rather than arbitrary locations on the system.

posted on 26 Haziran 2008 Perşembe 11:21:59 UTC  #   
Or Omea Reader has a strange dependency on Firefox:)

If, after upgrading to Firefox 3, your Omea Reader stops downloading feeds with the error message someting like "Could not find file C:\Documents and Settings\<your user name>\Application Data\Mozilla\Profiles\<random>.default\cookies.txt", that's because Firefox 3 now employs cookies.sqlite to persist cookie info. Create an empty cookies.txt there to get Omea on it's feet again. By the way, I tried to switch to Google Reader while investigating this problem and didn't found it as useful as Omea. Other than some odd behavior after resuming the computer from hibernation, and the lack of online reading experience from different macgines :(, Omea is still the perfect blog reader for me.

Now, depending on the existence of a cookies file of an external application is a shame on JetBrains's part, on the other hand. Especially if a dummy file works just as expected.

posted on 26 Haziran 2008 Perşembe 11:00:46 UTC  #   
Kathleen Dollard wrote a response regarding the Vote of No Confidence on the Entity Framework. I was reading her post knowing that there will be lots of posts circling around the Vote of No Confidence, some will agree and some won't, and that was such a post from a particular point of view, until I hit this one (emphesis not mine):
"Entity approaches are good because they better separate the business and data sides of our middle tiers. But they are also inherently difficult and inaccessible to most programmers. Entity Framework’s goal must be to bridge this gap. That means being extremely creative in picking its battles to reach toward the real world developer – not copy a strategy that is available to that developer today and fails (the combination of NHibernate and other tools used in a specific style of development). The failure is not because NHibernate is an Open Source tool. It’s not because people don’t know about it. If it worked in the majority of shops it would burn through our industry like wildfire. Why don’t you use them? Because they do not fit your development environment!"
Sorry, but this is FUD or what? What's the ground here to say that NHibernate, or any O/RM approach mimicking it, is failing? Does Linq To SQL, which is no different in theory than NHibernate but lacks most of it's features, is a carrot from MS to the impatient while they wait for the uber EF framework? What makes something fail in MS land when it is actually quite successful in other platforms? Take TDD, for example. It works, appearently, and gaining some momentum. But it's nowhere near burning through our industry like wildfire. You can't make average Joe and his boss accept TDD as the defacto way of writing software. Does that mean TDD fails? Do we need some other über-TDD to replace it at the moment?

NHibernate does actually fit very well into my development environment, and I see no reason why it won't for any other developer. It has a clear SoC attitude, minimalistic configuration (compare NH xml configuration files with any behind-the-scene xml dialect from MS and you'll know what I mean), nice performance. It has everything if you want to write maintainable code. That does not mean that it's irreplaceable, but it just works, now, and any newcomer should challange it, not vice versa.

But yes, it does not fit the development environment often thought by Microsoft. Last year, I have paid a visit to a client who was suffering lots of performance, scalability and mainly maintainability problems with their in-house written ERP system. It turns out that, the application was built on typed datasets start to finish. They decided that they need to port their application to .Net, took some courses along with MOC 2541 (part of the official MS curriculum saying that data access is a solved problem if you use drag'n drop and datasets), realized that typed datasets is the ultimate-easy way do access data and the rest is history for them. Don't get me wrong, I instructed almost all the courses in the official MS curriculum, but in each case I mentioned and demoed alternatives and told the audience that what they see in the official book is just part of the story.

In the last couple years I'm feeling much better about Microsoft, the direction they're heading, the way they're interacting with and listening to the community. I'm also a firm believer in code generation when it's due, wrote some tools to make developers' life easier (including people using NHibernate), and actually paid a visit to Cambidge, UK to meet the nice people of the DSL Tools team for a job interview a couple of months ago (I failed, appearently). I'm buying the toy my son wanted by spending the money I earned by using Microsoft technologies, and I'm happy with what I do. But I can't stand the "MS way or nothing else" attitude.

Microsoft is famous for handling developers as babies sometimes. If you're a C# developer, create a VB.NET project and you'll see that behavior precisely. In a VB.Net project, why project references or .designer.cs files are hidden? Where all this namespace thing gone? Where's the damn entry point of this application? The broad, ignorant world of MS developer echosystem (of which I'm a part of) is actualy ignorant because of this simple fact. In the past, we are always told that there's a specific way of writing applications, and you can find tools and documentation from Microsoft if you want to know what it is. If there's a problem already solved, it's solved by Microsoft. It's comfortable to leave the thinking to someone else and do what you told.

But times are changing, DAL == DAAB no more, we are more open and influenced by other tools, platforms and thinking. This is also true for O/RM tools / frameworks. I visit lots of clients every week, and O/RM is really something people are researching or already using somehow, be it in-house, EF, Linq to SQL, LLBLGen, NHibernate, or something else. So, again, how can one say that NHibernate is done, kaput, arrivederci? It's all just started, and minds are shifting.

In the long-run, reaching real world developers only works if you solve their real world problems with long-lasting frameworks. And by long-lasting, I mean frameworks that survive rewrites, gives you the opportunity to say that "I was right by selecting this" three years after your first deployment. I'm not saying that EF is not one of them, but we have seen many palliative solutions from MS that didn't last long, and the items in that Vote of No Confidence document are real and learned by experience. Real world experience.

posted on 26 Haziran 2008 Perşembe 08:49:33 UTC  #