Communicate, communicate, communicate – and if hell froze over, wouldn’t penguins settle?


The title might be the funniest tweet about latest version of Microsoft Azure that came out the other day.
The point is that it is now possible to run Linux in the Microsoft cloud.
I wonder if someone has mentioned it to SBallmer?

Recently out is also a new beta of Windows8 and Visualstudio2012 though they are called RC and whatnot.  TFS and EF are upgraded.  Dotnet is coming to version 4.5.

And this is only on the Microsoft stack.  Check out the new Apple hardware…

This news letter is sponsored by SBallmer himself.





  1. New stuff in Windows Azure (win)
  2. General purpose compressing library coming to dotnet (win)
  3. aspConf – a virtual Aspnet conference (win)
  4. Windows 8 client virtualization (win)
  5. Visual studio tip: add a solution to a solution (win)
  6. Visual studio/TFS 2012 release candidate and dotnet4.5 is here (win)
  7. LESS – takes some of the evul out of CSS
  8. Microsoft fakes – avoid adapting the architecture to the testing (win)
  1. Lean software and systems conference 2012 on Vimeo
  1. OpenROV – open source underwater remotedly operated vehicle
  2. Watch “The Ikea Song” on YouTube
  3. Yelling made easier


Code and development

New stuff in Windows Azure (win)

When Azure came around one was limited to dotnet and running two or three different types of programs.  It was not a bad solution and took a third path from Amazon and Google.  Now times are different.  Read on.

Firstly you can run the Azure SDK from latest version of Visual studio, the 2012RC release.  Go install!  You can run it from VS2010 too but what is the fun in that?

The admin portal is spiced up.  It is also reachable through REST.  DevOps cheers.

Azure can now run “normal” virtual machines.  This means you can set up a machine at home and then upload it.  The same machines can be moved to other platforms – read Amazon or take it home again.

To top it of, the VMs don’t even have to be Windows but 3 versions of linux are supported too.  Yes, you read that right.  Suse, CentOS and Ubuntu.

One can integrate to publish directly from TFS or Git.  I don’t know if there is any difference in functionality between the two.  This promises continuous deployment.

Choice of language for the Azure SDK is dotnet, java, javascript (node.js), php, python and possibly something more – I haven’t heard anything about ruby.

If you are afraid of earth quakes or electrical thunder storms or the more plausible nuclear fall out there is an option to have your data replicated to another place at least 640km away.


–     <- presentation keynote by scottgu

–    <- mmårtensson, a swedish mvp, sings praise to the new stuff. you’ve got to love his passion!

–      <- scottgu, head chief writes on his blog

–      <- continuous deployment to azure from tis



General purpose compressing library coming to dotnet (win)

Yup.  What the headline says.  In dotnet 4.5.



aspConf – a virtual Aspnet conference (win)

Online conference about the Microsoft stack.  17-18 of June.

Did I say it is gratis?



Windows 8 client virtualization (win)

Have you run a virtual machine under WinXP.  Have you finally managed how to set up for virtual machines on Win7 *without* installing the WinXP compatibility thingy?  Have you tried to move a virtual machine from WinXP to Win7?  Have you seen a grown man cry?

Windows8 puts something new in the cradle.  SLAT.  Some fast info about that is linked below.



Visual studio tip: add a solution to a solution (win)

I have seen one can add folders to a solution in visual studio.  Now I have read that one can add solutions to solutions.  Please note that I have written Solution and not Project.

Below is linked the original article.

The blog is dedicated to Visual studio tricks so it might be worth having in your RSS reader.



Visual studio/TFS 2012 release candidate and dotnet4.5 is here (win)

Don’t forget to update your Windows8 to get the newest stuff Metro-wise.
VS RC can be installed directly over the beta.
I don’t know how the Win8 upgrade process is.  Yet.

Some new stuff in TFS:

Easier association between work items on checkin.

Moving a TFS database has become easier, now there is tooling for it.

The GUI has been updated.

The task board is touch friendly.  I have lot to say about this but will save it for a later time and a greater scope.

Some new stuff in VS:

Performance is even better.  VS11 started quicker than VS2010.  VS2012 is even faster.

Don’t get me started about the GUI but is has been improved again.  Embrace change I say.

Theming is improved.  Now you can have a cool black theme to show off.  Personally I want to use the dark theme but don’t like it.

The solution explorer toolbox is changed.  It was close to being too cluttered.  It still is.

If you think it is – install DPack and don’t care about the solution explorer any more.

Tired of searching through the menus for a command?  There is a quick search for it.  Here I must give kudos to the team for at the same time presenting the shortcut in a non-intrusive way.

The XAML designer has been updated in both VS and Blend.

There are new Aspnet templates.  Among them a new empty one.

Scaffolding is new since the beta.  One uses the nuget command prompt to point out stuff and get code back.  Think like this: you want to create a new CRUD page for a table.  Write some text on a command line and the code gets written for you.  It is like when creating a new project that connects to a database and has a lot of pages but without having to… create a new project.

VS supports debugging in different web browsers.  No more need to swap default one.  One can even start several at once.

The Javascript editor is improved.

The CSS editor is improved.

The HTML editor is improved.

VS now uses out of the box.  Like everyone else does.

The web api is a more RESTful approach.  I have tried it and it is really simple and nice.

Put javascript files in a folder and VS can minify and bundle it for you for making faster downloads.

Lightswitch is improved.

If you are into testing and is using VS there are lots to learn already.  More functionality has now been added and the GUI has been improved.

Architectural tools have been improved but I won’t mention them due to their uselessness due to Microsofts licence scheme.  Unless you like 25000€ is a fair price.

Some new stuff in Dotnet4.5:

The await keyword.

It is like multi threading made easy to read.

EntityFramework 5.  Well… EF is released out of band with Dotnet so it isn’t a part of it.

EF5 has database migration.  This means you write upgrade and downgrade code for changing database version in a dotnet language and not sql as usual is.  I have seen it demonstrated and liked the smoothness of the process but still think it is the wrong way to go.  Database stuff should be done in databases and sql.  Amen.

–     <- mostly tis

–     <- contains a video too



LESS – takes some of the evul out of CSS

I am not saying CSS is bad.  I am just saying it is far from being good.

That today create a “language” that doesn’t have variables is so far out that even Whitespace seems like an ordinary language.

Enter LESS and SASS.  One of them, SASS IIRC, is also blessed by the Visual studio team.



Microsoft fakes – avoid adapting the architecture to the testing (win)

When doing TDD or BDD or any other abbreviation that requires testing one has to use interfaces.  Why?  Because otherwise one cannot mock.

Alas – adapting testing requires a change of architecture.  This is not considered a good thing.

Please note that I am not against interfaces; they have their reason.  But do also note that changing an architecture changes more than just a few boxes in a slide show.

Creating an architecture for supporting a domain is good.  Changing the architecture away from this is not necessarily good; even probably not so since the architecture was adapted to the domain to start with.

There is where Microsoft fakes comes in.  It supports the so called non-invasive testing which tries to stay away.  Instead it intercepts calls and does its job.



Projects and leadership

Lean software and systems conference 2012 on Vimeo

LSSC12 conference online gratis for your viewing pleasure.




OpenROV – open source underwater remotedly operated vehicle

A human life form has been on the moon more times than on the bottom of the ocean.  That is how little we know about it.

Normally ROVs, as they are called, are expensive, bulky, heavy and require several people to run them.  I have for a long time have the idea that it must not be so.  Thankfully some with more time and skill than I have thought so too.

Below is linked a start at knowing more; a small remotedly operated machine for under water use.  It looks nicer than all my sketches of my own solution.  The one I never had the time to build.

Did I say it is open? – like libre/free.



Watch “The Ikea Song” on YouTube

I don’t know if it is a try to be create a viral ad by Ikea themselves or guy with a funny bone.  Never the less it is funny.



Yelling made easier

Bash is like youtube but with text; there are a lot of duds but once in a while you start replaying/rereading the film/text while crying with laughter.




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