Monthly Archives: October 2007

During the lunch break Carlo and I walked around the Microsoft Corporate Campus in Redmond. It is autumn here as well. Lots of deciduous trees are shedding their leaves. The campus now shows lots of shades of red and yellow on leaves.

I took some pictures during the walk. You can see some below. Click on the images to see larger versions on Flickr:

Autumn in Redmond 

Carlo on the Microsoft Way Carlo standing at a Microsoft Way street sign.

Building 42 Building 42. Home to the .NET Framework teams.

Building 42 The other side of building 42.

Microsoft Conference Center The Microsoft Conference Center.

More pictures can be found on my Flickr page.

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Microsoft used the keynote in the SOA & Business Process Conference in Redmond to present its vision on the future of Service Oriented Architecture on the Microsoft platform. That vision and the wave of technology that will come with it, is codenamed "Oslo".

MVP Charles Young has a solid write up in a blog post called "Microsoft 'Oslo' - the vNext SOA platform". No need to repeat all that here.

Long time Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley is very critical in her post called "Microsoft talks SOA futures but not dates". Mary Jo ends with "Microsoft has been struggling to prove to the market that it has a real SOA strategy. While the Redmondians are talking the right talk, the company is still a ways away from walking the SOA walk. Will customers wait or run off with other SOA vendors before Microsoft rolls out more than just a piecemeal SOA strategy?"

"Oslo" is obviously a Grand Vision. It will take a couple of years before this next wave of Microsoft technologies will ship. I thought that after the Longhorn reset/WinFX debacle and the "Whidbey" delays, Microsoft would not attempt to align so many technologies again in the future. But it is! "Oslo" comprises of at least:

  • BizTalk Server "6"
  • Visual Studio "10"
  • .NET Framework "4"
  • Systems Center "5"
  • BizTalk Services "1"

Some of the stuff presented reminded me of the grand WinFX, especially WinFS, vision that Microsoft presented at PDC03. We all know that WinFS never RTM-ed, despite enormous effort (many, many man years) put into it by Microsoft. Especially the term "Universal Editor" for the "Oslo" integrated modeling tool gave me the creeps. Sounds too much like: One tool to rules them all. One tool that spans the entire application development lifecycle: from its inception to its deployment.

Here are some screenshots from the new "Universal Editor" modeling tool that was demoed during the keynote:

Microsoft Oslo Universal Editor

Microsoft Oslo Server List

Microsoft Oslo Application Verifier

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One of my post popular blog posts deals with problems I was having with the stability of Windows Vista. I had major problems hibernation and sleep modes on my Dell PC. My PC never reliably went to sleep or hibernation and crashed either during going to sleep or when waking up. A lot of other people encountered similar problems. This blog post has 66 comments so far.

No driver update or Windows update solved my problem until October 9, 2007.

Around that time Microsoft released a set of reliability updates that are going to be part of SP1. There are supposedly also going to show up in Windows Update, but I manually downloaded and installed them ahead of time. Note that I am not running the beta of SP1.

If you encounter similar problems with Windows Vista, I highly recommend that you install these updates as well (if you haven't got them through auto update yet):

KB941649 

This update resolves some compatibility and reliability issues in Windows Vista. By applying this update, you can achieve better reliability and hardware compatibility in various scenarios.

KB941600

This update resolves some reliability issues in the USB core components on the Windows Vista operating system.

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Scott Guthrie did a major announcement on his blog yesterday: Microsoft will be releasing the source code for most .NET Framework libraries with the release of Visual Studio 2008. There will even be integrated support for debugging into framework classes and on-demand dynamic downloading of source files and debug symbols in Visual Studio 2008.

This is great news for .NET developers and a major step forward for Microsoft in my opinion. In and by itself it is enough reason to warrant an upgrade to Visual Studio 2008. In fact, I can think of no reason to keep using Visual Studio 2005 after the release of VS2008.

The source will be released under the Microsoft Reference License which basically means you can view and debug but not change or reuse the source code.

If you want a more liberal license you can look into Rotor aka the Shared Source CLI. Rotor was Microsoft's first effort for open sourcing a .NET CLI implementation. But Microsoft does not guarantee that Rotor has exactly the same codebase as the real .NET Framework.

Check out the full details and screenshots of VS2008 integration on Scott's blog.

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I had taken this online typing test before on a laptop while sitting on the couch. Tonight I was sitting behind behind my desktop computer and decided to retry the test, because Dennis posted his results.

It feels a bit like a "who's got the biggest" contest, but here are the results of my first attempt:

Number of words typed: 219
Test duration: 3 min
Speed: 73.2 words/min. (366 keystrokes/min.)
Error penalty: 12
Accuracy: 94.5%

Not entirely happy with this, I retried the test. Every time you take the test a different text appears, so retrying is not cheating ;). These are the results of my second try:

Number of words typed: 245
Test duration: 3 min
Speed: 81.6 words/min. (408 keystrokes/min.)
Error penalty: 19
Accuracy: 92.2%

Beat this, Dennis! (Shouldn't be too hard 🙂