Friday, January 26, 2007

A new challenge...a new job...

I have been working for Ordina for more than two years now, and looking at the many great and challenging projects I have participated in, I was planning to continue with that for a long time. Moreover, Ordina has been investing a lot of time and resources in the development of their new .NET 3.0 and DSL based software factory. Several projects have been completed with it, and even more are about to start. And the best thing of it, is that I have had a decent  part in its success. For instance, I got a chance to show off this factory at this year's TechED together with Tom Hollander, and I had many great things on the horizon. And last but not least, I have many fine and great collegues. So, you can safely conclude that I had no reason to change that...but I will...

Quite recently, I have been contacted by a little company called Aviva Solutions. They primarily focus on providing consultancy services on enterprise solutions and e-commerce. Also, many of their consultants and architects dedicate their efforts on assisting customers with strategic choices on the architecture, the process, the infrastructure and the tools they use for building new systems.

After many sleepless nights, I have decided to join Aviva Solutions in these efforts. Looking at the stuff I wrote above, you can imagine that this was a really difficult decision for me. Nevertheless, somehow, I really felt like this is something I must do.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Visual Studio "Orcas" is Visual Studio 2007??

While installing the January 2007 CTP of Visual Studio Codename Orcas, the next installment in the Visual Studio suites, I noticed something peculiar in the setup window.

Is it really going to be called Visual Studio 2007? I do like the sound of it though. Unfortunately, installing this CTP on Windows Vista failed for me. I don't know why, but it continuously complains that a restart is needed before the setup continues. Uninstalling does not work either... to be continued..

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The origins of the Composite Application Block

Last year, during our visit to the Microsoft campus in Redmond, I got a chance to talk to Brenton Webster, a solutions architect of Microsoft Austrialia. He told us about a great project they've been doing for the Austrialian Commonwealth Back of Australia (CBA) based on Smart Clients and many back-office systems.

The cool thing about this project is that it involved creating a lot of framework development. Amongst them is an idea that eventually resulted in something what we now all know as the Composite User Interface Application Block.

At that time he told me that his team was working on a white paper about this project, its architecture and the technical solutions. Well, it took almost a year to complete this paper, but last month, the complete story has been release as a case study. Make sure you check it out (there's a PDF version as well). It's full of great ideas. 

Update: By the way, if you live in the Netherlands, and you're subscibed to the Dutch version of the .NET Magazine, my collegue Jonne Kats wrote a great introduction to CAB and the Smart Client Software Factory.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Under the hood of ASP.NET AJAX

You've probably heard of ASP.NET AJAX already and its potential for changing the balance between Web and Windows applicaties. This article explains how you can call ASMX web services from your Javascript code without any pain. Moreover, it also explains how that is accomplished under the hood.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Virtual PC 2007 Release Candidate 1

If you have, like me, been participating in the beta tests of the 2007 edition of Microsoft's Virtual PC, you should check out the Microsoft Connect site. They've released release candidate 1 (build 6.0.142) and it runs very smoothly under Vista on my HP laptop. Since I've been beta testing, I have not found any real problems while running it under Vista, but somehow, this new build made everything flow a little bit better.