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Book Review: Teach Yourself Windows PowerShell in 24 Hours | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps

Sat, 19 Mar 2016 11:00:00 EDT

While this book was designed to be used by Windows System Administrators, any developer who has ever needed to write a batch (.bat) file will welcome with open arms the flexibility and power provided by Windows PowerShell. This book is up to date covering all the way through PowerShell version 5. There are 24 chapters that cover a wide array of topics. In addition, any developer who has worked with the .NET framework will enjoy PowerShell, which is a command-line interface built on the .NET Framework.

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ReSharper Ultimate: One Key to Run Them All | @DevOpsSummit @ReSharper #DevOps

Thu, 17 Dec 2015 15:00:00 EST

ReSharper Ultimate is a license that combines all individual JetBrains .NET tools, as well as ReSharper C++. Each ReSharper Ultimate license allows a single developer to use ReSharper, ReSharper C++, dotCover, dotTrace and dotMemory. If a single developer uses Visual Studio to code both in C# (or VB.NET, or TypeScript, or other languages supported by mainline ReSharper) and in C++, they would probably want to have ReSharper help them out in both worlds. Purchasing ReSharper and ReSharper C++ for this developer is a valid option but buying ReSharper Ultimate will actually cost you less than the two-license combo and will additionally make the developer eligible to use dotCover, dotTrace and dotMemory.

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SQL Server Index Fragmentation In-Depth.

Fri, 20 Nov 2015 09:03:00 EST

There is no way to avoid index fragmentation in any SQL Server environment. It does not depend on your SQL Server version or I/O subsystem you have, or your hardware. In this article, we will drill down into SQL Server index fragmentation issue. We will figure out why index fragmentation is a problem and how it affect on overall performance, discuss how to detect and avoid it.

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Best Practices for .NET Code Review | @CloudExpo #Cloud

Thu, 25 Jun 2015 15:29:00 EDT

It is a human nature to make mistakes, but mistakes in source code can lead to expensive consecutive mistakes if not fixed in time. Unfortunately, black box testing often cannot fully cover software. And even if it does, fixing a bug found by QA is at least two times as expensive as fixing it before issuing a build. Performance bottlenecks, security, scalability and reliability issues should be identified as early as possible. This is where code review comes in. Code review, which is also known sometimes as peer review, is a set of systematic examination measures used to critique computer code with the objective of finding and fixing bugs early in the development stage in order to develop high quality software and perfect skills of developers for future projects.

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A Groundbreaking Technological Revolution - ASP.NET vNext

Tue, 05 May 2015 11:48:33 EDT

Everyone knows that advancements are very quick in the software world particularly in web development world. Web development technologies experience with .NET has never been so revolutionary like this, since its inception. It’s the first version of ASP.NET that marks a radical evacuation from the original platform that was considered in the early days of the creation of .NET platform. A lot has changes seems since then how regarding how web apps and ASP.NET vNext reimagines the core framework from ground up with a more modern stack that provides better performance , scalability and economy in cloud based hosting scenarios.

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Static Analysis Helps Computer Company Prevent Software Errors

Wed, 29 Apr 2015 15:42:00 EDT

A leading personal computer company is dedicated to adding market-differentiating software "preloads" to their systems, and wants to continue their trend of reducing field-reported defects for those preloads. They have adopted a custom-tailored static analysis solution for eliminating defects early in the software development lifecycle. This "shift left" enables them to accelerate delivery while ensuring high reliability.

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McObject Perst for .NET Eval Under Open Source GPL

Sat, 18 Apr 2015 00:00:00 EDT

Despite modifications to run optimally in the compact subset of Microsoft?s .NET Framework, Perst for .NET Compact Framework retains a common source code base and distribution with Perst for .NET ? a boon for developers developing in both environments, or migrating .NET applications to run in .NET Compact Framework.

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Don’t Jump in the Data Lake

Wed, 01 Apr 2015 10:08:00 EDT

32. 47. 19. 7. 85. Congratulations! I just gave you five very important, valuable numbers. Or did I? If they were tomorrow’s winning Powerball numbers, then […]

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Barcelona the Smart City

Thu, 12 Mar 2015 16:50:00 EDT

In this short video I review the recent Smart City award that Juniper Research recently gave to Barcelona and what it takes to be a smart city these days.  Enjoy!

Video Link: https://youtu.be/ticVDU8V2fY

allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ticVDU8V2fY" width="640">
************************************************************************
Kevin Benedict
Writer, Speaker, Senior Analyst
Digital Transformation, EBA, Center for the Future of Work Cognizant
View my profile on LinkedIn
Learn about mobile strategies at MobileEnterpriseStrategies.com
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Subscribe to Kevin'sYouTube Channel
Join the Linkedin Group Strategic Enterprise Mobility
Join the Google+ Community Mobile Enterprise Strategies

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I am a mobility and digital transformation analyst, consultant and writer. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.
(image)

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AlertLogic to Present Proactive Cloud Security at @CloudExpo | @AlertLogic | [#Cloud]

Mon, 09 Mar 2015 11:28:00 EDT

Organizations from small businesses to the enterprise are increasingly adopting cloud solutions to deliver essential business services. According to cyber-security experts, the frequency and severity of cyberattacks are on the rise, causing alarm to businesses and customers across a variety of industries. To defend against exploits like these, a comprehensive security defense strategy is key. In 2014, organizations such as J.P Morgan Chase, Kmart, and the U.S. Postal Service experienced data breaches through malware and other targeted attacks. How will your business adapt to this shift in technology while keeping its security posture?

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Book Review: Swift in 24 Hours

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 11:55:00 EST

This book has Beginning to Intermediate on the back cover. I would recommend you put that into the context of learning Swift, not learning Object-Oriented Programming. The book does an excellent job of covering the Swift language in detail and it jumps right in after a short introduction to the available development environments - Xcode, playgrounds, and REPL (Read-Eval-Print-Loop). REPL is kind of a command line version of playgrounds running in terminal.

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DevOps Enterprise Summit Scheduled For October 19-21, 2015 In San Francisco

Tue, 17 Feb 2015 10:11:00 EST

SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Electric Cloud and IT Revolution today jointly announced their upcoming DevOps Enterprise Summit (DOES) is scheduled to take place October 19–21, 2015, in San Francisco. DOES, the premiere conference focused on DevOps and accelerating software delivery within large enterprise environments, expects to double in size (to 1,200) driven by last year's overwhelming attendee response to the real-life, high-impact transformation case studies shared by companies like Disney, Macy's and GE, among others.

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IBM InterConnect – The Largest DevOps Conference Ever!

Mon, 16 Feb 2015 23:22:00 EST

IBM InterConnect is next week! It is IBMs premier conference focussed on all aspects of the IT Industry – Cloud, Mobile, Analytics, Internet of Things – you name it! I will of course be there for DevOps. With literally 100s of sessions dedicated to DevOps, this is the largest DevOps conference ever! I have multiple sessions I will be delivering. You can find details here. I will be live-tweeting from InterConnect. Follow me @sd_architect for continuous updates. I plan to spend a lot of time in the DevOps zone at the expo. If you are there, stop bye, say Hi and pick up a copy of the 2nd Edition of my DevOps For Dummies book!

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DevOps Infographic – Enterprise vs Unicorns

Wed, 04 Feb 2015 21:31:00 EST

DevOps Infographic – Enterprise Reality vs Unicorns

The post DevOps Infographic – Enterprise vs Unicorns appeared first on Plutora Inc.

(image)

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A Quick Look at Boards in Office Delve

Wed, 07 Jan 2015 13:01:00 EST

You might have heard today that the new Boards (aka Pinterest) feature for Office Delve was released to First Release customers of Office 365. I was lucky enough to have it show up already in a few of my tenants, so I thought I would share my initial experience. When you open Delve now, you’ll notice a new icon that says Add to board.

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Five Essentials in Office Automation

Wed, 17 Dec 2014 11:02:00 EST

If you have moved from typewriters and facsimile to computers and emails, you have come a long way in office automation, but you aren’t there just yet! Not if your office still runs around taking print-outs of documents at each iteration & approval. You are nowhere close to having your office automated if it takes […]

The post 5 Essentials In Office Automation appeared first on KiSSFLOW.

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Book Review: Adaptive Code via C#

Tue, 16 Dec 2014 07:00:00 EST

I have seen a lot of Scrum projects flop and flop hard. There are so many IT shops that look at the little iterative Scrum diagram and think, "well that looks easy enough", and they are off and running. Regretfully they don't understand that Scrum is just a process, and a development process is only as good as the team you've assembled. In real world development project's processes should be tailored for a given project. Allowing you to account for your team's skills and availability, your business's needs, the tools you have available, the environment you are working in, the difficulty of the solution, the working environment - team member locations, greenfield vs. brownfield development, and many more things that are usually not taken into consideration when a project is started.

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Five Reasons For Using C# For Enterprise Client Development

Mon, 15 Dec 2014 16:58:00 EST

In the last 15 years any mention of C# in enterprise space will generally be countered with a support for Java. However the above thoughts are not about C# Vs Java. Typically both Java and C# are equally strong in their developer support, OOPS principles and productivity needs. But unfortunately Java at this time does not have a universal client strategy as C# does and hence C# is mentioned as a choice for future enterprise client development. Considering the recent announcements about, .net core is now part of Open Source initiative this means even enterprises which are bit sceptic about using a commercial platform can also find some support for this thought process.

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Interview with ERHC Energy Inc. President and CEO Peter Ntephe

Sat, 13 Dec 2014 11:35:00 EST

What is ERHC's current focus? ERHC has come a long way from a passive-portfolio holding company confined to one set of offshore assets in the Gulf of Guinea. We've diversified the company and taken it onshore East and Central Africa where we have made it a veritable and respected operator in its own right. Our focus is on building value by using aggressive exploration work programs to mature our onshore assets. What is happening currently in Kenya? We operated Kenya Block 11A successfully, according to schedule through the carrying out of a Full Tensor Gravity Gradiometry (FTG) survey and the award of seismic. That was before a farm-in to CEPSA, which took over as operator earlier this year. With the conclusion of seismic in the Block and completion of work program requirements of our first exploration phase, preparation for drilling our first exploration well is currently going on at full steam. All this has been achieved in a little over two years, which is quite quick for such work programs.

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Telling the Brand Story with Mobile Applications and Code Halos

Sat, 13 Dec 2014 11:33:00 EST

The pace of change in retail today is crazy! Consumer behaviors are changing as fast as new mobile applications are being released. I don't envy the role of the IT strategy team or the marketing team in a retail operation today.

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First Cloud-Based Log Management Service

Sat, 13 Dec 2014 11:32:00 EST

Heavily regulated enterprise organizations today are required to prioritize security and compliance within their IT environment, and need flexibility to filter private information out of their logs while also accessing the valuable data that is held within their logs. While historically this meant they did not have the option for cloud-based services, the Logentries DataHub is offering the first cloud-based service for log management real-time analytics designed to enable security, privacy, and sensitive data protection. By automatically detecting and tracking specific patterns, numbers, or fields within log files and offering one-way hash coding, the DataHub provides an additional layer of security and protection and assures that no sensitive log data leaves the network. Additionally, by monitoring important machine data in real-time, customers always know about system and user activity that may be an indicator of future security concerns.

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Benefits of Using Managed IT Services by an Organization

Fri, 12 Dec 2014 05:27:00 EST

With changing times, business complexities too has changed its contours. The trend is so that several organizations in Miami want to cut down heavily on costs incurred. Towards this end, they maintain the status quo and leave the task of providing IT solutions to the internal department of the organization. This leaves the entity to devote majority of their time in less strategic activities that could have otherwise brought ‘real' value to businesses. Thus, nowadays, the need for managed IT services in Miami has grown expeditiously. There are many providers of IT services in Miami who are willing to cater to the needs of enterprises

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Microsoft .NET - Architecting Applications for the Enterprise (2nd Edition)

Tue, 09 Dec 2014 08:22:00 EST

Below is my review of the first edition of this book. I have included it in its entirety and because it is rather short. This book does a great job of putting architecture into a view that .NET developers and architects can relate to. The book covers design principles and patterns, and then relates them to each layer of a traditional layered system. It includes business, services, data access, and presentation layers. The authors include several different patterns for each layer and discuss the pros and cons of each.

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Invisible Analytics and Power BI For Office 365

Sat, 06 Dec 2014 08:56:00 EST

All the hype around IoT and associated processing will not be of much use if the massive data not resulted in some tangible results end users. It is even more relevant in consumer scenarios . What is the use of an high end car with telematics engine if it is not going to take a call on checking the break oil leakage, much before the vehicle ran into some trouble. This could be just one simple example, but many more relevant can easily be foreseen. Unrelated to Telematics , recently we have seen the term ‘Invisible Analytics’ being used as part of technology trends of future. As per recent Gartner trends for 2015, Analytics will become deeply, but invisibly embedded everywhere." Big data remains an important enabler for this trend but the focus needs to shift to thinking about big questions and big answers first and big data second — the value is in the answers, not the data. It further states that, Organizations need to manage how best to filter the huge amounts of data coming from the IoT, social media and wearable devices, and then deliver exactly the right information to the right person, at the right time. The above point leads to the fact while a centralized Analytics solution is a key for a holistic decision making and predictions, there needs to be a Micro Analytics engine as part of each device that needs to do a similar job may be in a scaled down fashion.

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How Cloud Computing Can Help State Governments

Sat, 06 Dec 2014 08:56:00 EST

While security will continue to be an issue, more and more state governments are feeling comfortable with the cloud and making the big move. State tech leaders are seeing the benefits that come with cloud computing and determining they outweigh any drawbacks. During a time when delivering results with a lower price tag is a top priority, cloud computing might just solve the needs of state governments all over the country.

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iPaaS to mBaaS

Mon, 01 Dec 2014 07:55:00 EST

Cloud is all about integration and interoperability is also a key. Major players like DELL and Microsoft are already close partners in several other initiatives and it would make lot of sense if a iPaaS like DELL Boomi gets fully integrated with a mBaaS like Azure Mobile Services and being called under the banner of mBaaS, that will indeed strengthen Microsoft’s ‘Mobile First And Cloud First ‘ strategy.

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MBaaS - Azure vs AWS | @CloudExpo [#Cloud]

Fri, 21 Nov 2014 09:25:00 EST

Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) is one of the fastest growing cloud services delivery model. While there are some pure play vendors already in the race, considering the diversity of technologies in most enterprises , MBaaS may well be served better when working along side a cloud based PaaS service so that a combination of MBaaS eco system can be provided. In that context both Microsoft Azure and Amazon AWS provides options for enterprises.

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xxx

Fri, 21 Nov 2014 09:24:00 EST

It seems like everyone in DevOps has been talking about JSON recently - JSON is hot! We'll explore JSON formatting of Windows events.

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Announcement: SCU Is Now Available on Channel 9

Tue, 11 Nov 2014 11:58:49 EST

I am excited to announce the partnership between SCU and Channel 9, allowing for all SCU content and the live SCU US event feed available via Channel 9. SCU 2015 US will take place 2/4/15 in Dallas, TX. This year’s event includes two live tracks, one of which will be featured on Channel 9 live, the day of the event and the other streamed live through www.systemcenteruniverse.com. This partnership will allow for the content at SCU to be even more accessible to the community.

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ScienceLogic Appoints IT Management Veteran Don Pyle as Chief Operating Officer

Mon, 13 Oct 2014 13:35:00 EDT

IT Monitoring software provider ScienceLogic today announced that industry veteran Don Pyle has been appointed Chief Operating Officer and a Member of the Board of Directors. Pyle has held multiple CEO positions and brings more than 25 years of IT infrastructure software and hardware experience to ScienceLogic. As COO, Pyle will shepherd the Company's ongoing global expansion as well as lead the sales and marketing functions. Don's career track record includes three company IPOs and two acquisitions.

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What Should Be in Your .NET Toolkit? [#DotNet]

Wed, 24 Sep 2014 10:00:00 EDT

These days, implementing automatic deployment for .NET web projects is easier than ever. Drastic improvements started in Visual Studio 2010 when basic deployment strategies and tools were incorporated into VS itself. Yet, documentation was quite poor at that time, so you had to scour the Internet to find good tutorials in blogs or conference videos. Things have been constantly improving since then; now, we have even more functionality available out-of-the-box and documentation provided in a way that allows you to get started from zero understanding of the process to working deployment in less than two days. Some good places to start are this tutorial for an end-to-end guide on configuration and MSDN’s overview.

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Band-Aid Branding in the Tech World

Wed, 03 Sep 2014 14:48:51 EDT

At MCFTech we use platform technologies to develop tailored or customized collaborative process solutions for a wide range of business needs. We serve areas of business that get overlooked by IT because the projects are “too small” to garner high level attention. At MCFTech, we know these projects are critically valuable. One of our biggest challenges remains: how do we classify our tools and the space in which we operate? In fact, conversations with our partners and colleagues reveal a ubiquitous struggle for consensus on a proper name or categorization.

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How D3 Can Help You Build Effective Data Visualizations

Fri, 15 Aug 2014 13:35:25 EDT

Traditionally, data visualization has been used for quantitative work, but ways to represent qualitative work have been shown to be equally powerful. The main goal of data visualization, is to communicate information clearly and effectively through graphical means. That doesn’t mean that it needs to look boring to be functional or extremely sophisticated to look beautiful. In order to achieve a balance, both aesthetics and functionality need to go hand in hand. In this post I will demonstrate how D3 can help to build effective graphical representations of data, and I will give a few tips to use when building them.

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Set Up Logging on Google Compute Engine in Less Than 5 Minutes

Mon, 11 Aug 2014 15:57:55 EDT

As developers continue to rely more and more on cloud computing services like Amazon Web Services, Google Compute Engine, and Microsoft Azure, the need for comprehensive log data management for these platforms has grown as well This post gives a quick overview of setting up Logentries on Google Compute Engine.

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Revisiting the Past with Logentries and Syslog

Fri, 25 Jul 2014 11:04:32 EDT

When I was younger I was always amazed by my grandfather. He would revel me in stories about how, when growing up, not only did he not have a car or television, but he had to walk up hill “both ways” to get to school – without shoes! And here I am today more or less saying the same thing about the late 70′s and early 80′s when client-server changeover that occurred during that time and we all had servers sitting in our closets. Setting up syslog back in the day usually involved a large amount of disk space and a fair amount of time.

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How to Combine D3 with AngularJs

Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:00:27 EDT

As we all know, Angular and D3 frameworks are very popular, and once they work together they can be very powerful and helpful when creating dashboards. But, they can also be challenging and confusing especially when new to these frameworks. The right way to incorporate D3 with Angular is to use custom directives. Directives in Angular are essentially functions that are executed on a DOM element. Let’s go through a simple example together.

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Windows 8.1 Deployment in Action | Part 6

Fri, 27 Jun 2014 15:41:20 EDT

Leveraging WDS can provide a tremendous boost to your MDT deployment environment. In this part we put all the parts together, to have your first deployment environment ready to go. By bringing together the images you create in the MDT and making them a part of the WDS environment.

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Windows 8.1 Deployment in Action | Part 5

Fri, 20 Jun 2014 15:50:54 EDT

Understanding task sequences allows you to put together all your building blocks in proper order. In this part we will take a look at how to build a task sequence, that will allow you to put together all the components necessary for your Windows 8.1.

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Windows 8.1 Deployment in Action | Part 3

Fri, 20 Jun 2014 15:45:49 EDT

In this part of the series we will take a look at how to install the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) and the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (WADK).

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Windows 8.1 Deployment In Action | Part 4

Fri, 20 Jun 2014 15:45:49 EDT

One of the basic building blocks in a MDT environment are the deployment shares. In this part, you will get to take a look at the basic building block in an MDT environment, the deployment share. This will house all the files to help provision and build your desktop.

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Windows 8.1 Deployment in Action | Part 2

Fri, 20 Jun 2014 15:45:48 EDT

In this part we talk about the under the hood requirements you will need to setup prior to installing the tools.

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Windows 8.1 Deployment in Action | Part 1

Thu, 19 Jun 2014 11:00:00 EDT

Good day everyone! In our recent set of IT camps we talked about Windows 8.1 in the enterprise, one of the topics we discussed was deployment technologies. So I decided to put together a series of screencasts to talk about deploying Windows 8.1. More importantly throughout these screencasts all the tools I will show are FREE or built-in to Windows Server 2012 R2. In this part I take a quick tour of deployment technologies and tools. You will also see a full deployment in action. Enjoy!

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Microsoft's Report: Cyberspace 2025

Tue, 03 Jun 2014 22:32:00 EDT

Our dependency on Internet will only grow and with new countries maturing and entering it can only be exponential. Innovation in technology and unparalleled mobility can only accelerate it. The report estimates upward of 4.7 billion people of which 75% from emerging economies entering the Internet and this can only bring in more forces to contend with.

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Sparx Enterprise Architect 11 Released

Tue, 06 May 2014 13:05:28 EDT

For years now, Sparx Enterprise Architect has been the one software package I insist having on all my projects. It doesn't matter if the projects are mobile iOS and Android, .NET, ASP.NET, ASP.NET Web API, Enterprise or Software Architecture modeling, SPEM (Software Process Engineering Metamodel) modelling, or a SPLE (Software Product Line Engineering) project, Sparx Enterprise Architect is my go to tool. To see examples of some of the things listed above, done with Sparx Enterprise Architect, you can visit here. You can also find some examples here on the Sparx Community Site.

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Database Access Patterns Gone Wild

Mon, 07 Apr 2014 08:00:00 EDT

Telerik Controls are great for building modern, rich clients, and web applications often seen at the enterprise level. I just worked with a company that uses these controls in their soon-to-be-released customer-facing SharePoint portal. They ran a small load test that showed that the response times were ranging between 150ms and 1.3s for most of their pages – which is acceptable. Still, they wanted my opinion on the data – so they shared a dynaTrace session with me. I observed a number of problems prior to the production deployment:

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Reboot Testing for Modern Software Development

Fri, 04 Apr 2014 11:30:00 EDT

Traditional methods of software development went over the waterfall in a barrel and smashed on the rocks below. The Agile Manifesto was written more than a decade ago. Agile adoption has worked wonders for software development. New products leap from concept to market faster than ever before. Software updates are expected to roll out quickly into live products without disruption, the cloud is growing ever larger, and mobile technology is impacting heavily on how applications are developed. Feedback from the end user informs the design. Documentation and planning are sidelined in favor of flexibility and speed. It’s a trend that has powered the app revolution, but it’s so focused on developers that testing has been forgotten.

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Microsoft Piggy backs Microsoft OFFICE 365 on iPads - Bravo

Tue, 01 Apr 2014 19:49:00 EDT

I believe this was an excellent move to improve the Microsoft bottom line. I am not as sure as Simon Phipps blogging that Microsoft has taken a step towards (partially perhaps) embracing Open Source, I believe it is to make the best of the breed of Microsoft's product available on the best of breeds Apple product.

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Working with the Windows 8.1 Interface

Mon, 31 Mar 2014 11:00:00 EDT

Hopefully you never forgot Group Policy! Whenever the topic of working with desktops in business is brought up, IT Pro’s always want to manage and maintain those desktops. For me the first thing that always come to mind is Group Policy and hopefully does for you as well. Group Policy is one of the primary tools you can quickly leverage to help control your IT infrastructure. What better way to manage our desktops than with a free tool that is built into Active Directory, and has been there since the Windows NT days. In today’s post I am going to take a look at some of the new features in Windows 8.1 Group Policy as well as some of then new settings you will want to learn to leverage to help manage your desktops. Oh, by the way you can still change the users desktop background to blue, with blue labels on the shortcuts, or put the logoff command in the log in script, if you are so inclined not that I have ever done that.

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Book Review: Windows 8.1 Apps with XAML and C# Unleashed

Tue, 18 Mar 2014 08:15:00 EDT

As with Nathan's book WPF 4 Unleashed books, this book is a pure pleasure to read. It is in full color, the content is laid out in an easy to read style, the author's writing style makes it easy to read, and the content is all valuable. There is no fluff like you find in a lot of the books written today. Part I of the book starts out with an awesome chapter on the anatomy of a Windows store app and then has a great chapter introducing XAML. The book is broken down into a total of 7 parts. I have listed them below along with the chapters they contain.

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Working with the Windows 8.1 Interface

Sun, 09 Mar 2014 16:00:00 EDT

One of the most often questions/feedback we get regarding Windows 8.1 is where is my start menu. These conversations can get very passionate, and usually turn into a commentary around on how much we miss our start menu. I am sure some folks want to punch the screen. I totally understand your frustration and I went through this as well. While Windows 8 does provide a big change to how we do things in the interface, it did make me re-think why I used my start menu. What I learned from my own usage and talking to all you wonderful folks, is that the start menu is used for small common set of minimum tasks. Here is a list of the most common things folks like yourselves have told me, and I personally had problems finding in Windows 8.1: •Shutdown and Sign Out •Search •Launch and Find Recently Installed Applications Like all of you once I learned how to get around Windows 8 and find these basic tasks, I found that I will never need my start menu again. In this article, I am here to help show you how to accomplish these tasks with ease in Windows 8.1. In the end I hope you learn some new tips and tricks to improve how you use Windows 8.1,

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