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Date: Wednesday, 21 Feb 2007 17:19

Despite the title, I'm not a cyborg.  For those of you who missed that implication, I'll give you a moment...

Seriously though, even though I've been a non-MSer for a little over 3 months now, I'm still passionate about technology.  You can witness the evidence of this in the article I wrote for the Illinois Real Estate Journal.  To be honest, I'm surprised that there are not more technology consultants dedicated exclusively to professional services users like lawyers and real estate professionals.  Since this is my first publication in the real estate world, check out the article and give me feedback.  As technical professionals, I'm eager to hear your thoughts on this article and suggestions for future articles.

Note: If you look really closely at my photo, you'll see that it is in fact a Microsoft shirt that I was wearing.  Those "in the know" will even recognize when the picture was taken.

[After-blog mint] Given my new employment, I have decided to officially create a blog to replace the void in my life from giving up this lovely little number.  You can find it at http://corporaterealestate.wordpress.com/.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Personal Life"
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Date: Thursday, 18 Jan 2007 02:55

That's going to remain a secret, but those of you who make your way to my blog and want to stay in touch, the "Contact Me" functionality should now work properly.

Cheers (and Happy Coding),
Jacob

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Personal Life"
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Date: Wednesday, 18 Oct 2006 22:44

During my three-year tenure at Microsoft, I have met many wonderful people.  For those of you I have worked with along the way, I wanted to share my bittersweet news.  After three amazing years at Microsoft, I will be leaving to start a new chapter in my life.  While I am not writing out the possibility of returning to Microsoft in the future, now is the optimal time in my life to transition to the next phase of my career path.  Thank you for joining me on my wonderful three-year roller coaster ride of challenges and opportunities – I hope that our paths will cross again in the future.

 

I will be moving to Equis Corporation, a real estate advisory group based in Chicago.  My new opportunity will be as a transaction advisory associate with Equis.  My duties will include working with business clients to identify their real estate usage and needs, work closely with my clients to evaluate the various space options and negotiate the best lease or purchase arrangements to help my clients save money.  It will be a great opportunity for me to develop my customer relations and sales skills, while simultaneously having a significant impact on my clients’ businesses.

 

My last day at Microsoft will be 10/31/2006.  Feel free to contact me via this blog if you would like to stay in touch following my transition.

 

Happy Coding,

Jacob Cynamon

Developer Community Champion/Partner Relations Lead

Microsoft Across America

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Upcoming MSDN Events, User Group Events,..."
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Date: Tuesday, 05 Sep 2006 20:02

Hey everybody,

After several weeks of planning, Glen Gordon and I have our first webcast in the MSDN geekSpeak program!  We've got Jim Wilson as our special guest - he will be discussing mobility and Windows Mobile 5.0 development as well as answering your live questions (possibly with short "demos", so you can view the answers live).  Full details are available on our MSDN geekSpeak website.

Happy coding,
Jacob

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge"
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Date: Monday, 21 Aug 2006 20:44

As a developer community champion (DCC), I always want to keep my community abreast of training opportunities to keep your tech skills sharp and competitive.  To that end, I have compiled a couple of training opportunities that you may want to check out.

IMG (Chicago-based)

IMG just recently rolled out some training on Visual Studio 2005 Team System.  For those of you looking to get more out of your MSDN Universal subscription, this is one of the first official training programs dedicated to VSTS.

Total Training (DVD-based)

Total Training™ for Microsoft ASP.NET 2.0

Get up to speed with one of the hottest tools for building powerful, dynamic web applications. ASP.NET’s easy programming model makes building real world Web applications dramatically easier. You will learn how to enable an HTML-like style of declarative programming that lets you build great pages with far less effort than with classic ASP or technologies like PHP or JSP.

Happy coding,
Jacob

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge"
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Date: Thursday, 10 Aug 2006 03:00

Howdy loyal blog readers,

We don't have all of the details worked out yet, but I wanted to let you all know about an experimental webcast series that my friend Glen Gordon and I are putting together.  Basically, we're going to be interviewing experts on various .NET and developer technologies, while leveraging Live Meeting to allow for dynamic demonstrations.  You can find out more on our special blog site - geekSpeak.

We'll be posting more details to the geekSpeak blog as we line up speakers for Wednesdays in September.

Cheers,
Jacob

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Personal Life"
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Date: Thursday, 10 Aug 2006 02:05

So I was in Omaha yesterday for the MSDN Event this quarter, and I was overwhelmed by the tremendous enthusiasm that poured forth from the developer community.  We usually average about 45% drop-off, meaning that 55% of the registered customers actually attend.  Well, we saw only 30% drop off, so that, paired with unprecedented registration of 380 meant that we had a pretty packed house with 266 developers in attendance.

That alone wouldn't be so impressive, except that on the same day, with the same content, half a country away, Beantown could only draw out 265 attendees.  Congratulations, Omaha!  Keep up the great excitement.

If I didn't live in Chicago, I wouldn't hold such animosity for Boston, but given that I do have massive amounts of Chicago pride, I can only assume that all of the other attendees were stuck somewhere in the labyrinth of the Big Dig.

PS How 'bout them BoSox?  Beantown, just remember that there's only one true Sox in our parts.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Personal Life"
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Date: Tuesday, 01 Aug 2006 17:44

At the Saint Louis .NET User Group yesterday night, a fellow in the dark (both figuratively and literally in this case) asked about the Handles keyword in Visual Basic .NET.  Although I provided a brief explanation during the event, with the help from some audience participation, I still wanted to share a bit more about this keyword and its buddies.

This article on MSDN walks through the basics of events, event handlers, and the WithEvents and Handles keywords.

Author: "MSDNArchive"
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Date: Friday, 21 Jul 2006 16:56

Friday, July 21, 2005, 2 PM Central

View here: Deploying Visual Basic 2005 Applications with ClickOnce

Resources for after Friday's webcast

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Thursday, 20 Jul 2006 18:31

Thursday, July 20, 2006, 2 PM Central

Register here: Rapid Application Development for the Visual Basic 2005 Developer

Resources for after today's webcast

Do you have other resources to share with the volkswebcast community?  Comment to this post with the resource that you find most useful when it comes to rapid application development.

If you are looking all the way down here, you were probably looking above at the "Writing Correct Code" segment.  If you did not see it, look above and you will see that it tells you to "See below!"  Now that you are back down here, if you viewed the RAD webcast, you probably call that I put out a challenge, in the form of a homework assignment.  The goal is to share poorly-written code snippets.  Submit, in the form of comments, code that is poorly written*.  If you have a file or code project (less than 1 megabyte in size), email it to me and I will post it up here for everyone to enjoy.  This will serve as an exercise in identifying what's bad about the code, as well as giving us a chance to exercise some of the "writing correct code" features of Visual Basic 2005.

* Be sure to remove personally-identifiable information from code and resist the urge to share proprietary code.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Saturday, 10 Jun 2006 17:26

In 9 Money Rules to Live By [sic]Liz Pulliam Weston stated, "The average graduate makes 70% more over his or her lifetime than someone who stops with a high school diploma."

Without elaborating on the details of the survey or research, this statement implies that going to college will bump up your lifetime income by 70+%.  This may or may not be the case, due to several confounding factors.  There may be a high correlation between college and greater lifetime income, but there are correlations between going to college and several other statistics, like race and socioeconomic status, for instance.  During college, I spent 3 years giving tours and talking with prospective freshmen.  One thing that struck me was that not all of the prospectives would be best served by my alma mater, or even college for that matter. 

It is unfortunate that we, as Americans, are wearing blinders and declaring that college is the right answer for everyone.  Some need the discipline of the military, some the immediate financial benefits of a post-high school career, and some simply don't have the intellectual capacity for a college education.  It's not right to encourage people to do things that would be to their detriment, and your blanket statement about college improving someone's financial outlook does just that.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Personal Life"
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Date: Friday, 09 Jun 2006 04:06

I'm taking a bit of a breather from all of my event travel of the last few weeks, but I wanted to make sure that you, my loyal blog readers, have advanced notice of a couple large developer conferences coming up in October.

For those of you in the North Central area of the US, the 2006 Annual Heartland Developers Conference will be coming up in Omaha, NE on October 26 and 27 (two days!!!).  There is a great collection of speakers, although it appears that anyone can get their name on the list (look at the 4th one down).  Added bonus: one of the web buttons has this Charleton Heston-looking fellow, which inspires confidence in me (and strangely, the urge to pick up some automatic weapons the next time I'm at my neighborhood pawn shop).

If you don't live in North Central, don't despair - the devLink Technical Conference is drawing a great set of speakers ('yours truly' not included... this time around) on October 13 in Nashville, TN.  This event is free and has lots of great prizes (scroll down to the bottom of the page) - everyone loves prizes, so check this one out :-D

They don't have a Charleton Heston look-alike, but Nashville is one fine-looking city:

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "User Group Events, Developer Knowledge"
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Date: Tuesday, 30 May 2006 04:57

It's good to be back home in Chicago.  I have had a whirlwind tour, going from Chicago to Des Moines, St. Paul, Grand Rapids, Detroit, Phoenix and Las Vegas.  I now have a few days of R&R before the ultimate trip - visiting my two beautiful nieces in Cleveland.

In the mean time, I did have a couple of clarifying comments about some of the developer discussions we had in Phoenix on Tuesday of last week.

Q) How do you encrypt sections of the config file?

A) Thanks to Robert Shelton, Jr., Federal DE for Microsoft, we have a hosted video demonstrating just how to do this invaluable technique

Q) What is the ASP.NET 2.0 web parts support in FireFox?

A) I would like to thank a diligent attendee who pointed out to me that the drag-and-drop layout functionality in the web part framework does not work natively in FireFox.  However, with the latest CTP of Atlas and a few tweaks to your config file, you can enable drag-and-drop support for your websites in FireFox. 

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge"
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Date: Friday, 19 May 2006 21:46

This week, I had the pleasure of driving out to Michigan to present MSDN Events to the developer communities of Grand Rapids and Detroit (Livonia).  We had a couple of "unanswerables" from the events that I would like to answer now and share with everyone:

Q: How can I consume custom types with My.Settings in VB 2005?
A:
This article discusses the My.Settings functionality in-depth and explores leveraging partial classes to extend the My.Settings functionality with custom types in code.

Q: When using the Logging Application Block in Enterprise Library, where in the code do we declare the LogEntry routing information?
A: The LogEntry "routing" is addressed with the LogEntry.Categories collection, which allows us to "tag" log entries so that the configuration settings can properly route them. See
this article from the Patterns and Practices team for more details.

Have a great weekend,
Jacob

Author: "MSDNArchive"
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Date: Wednesday, 17 May 2006 16:58

Attend Wednesday's webcast on Visual Basic Migration
Time: Wednesday, May 17 at 12PM Pacific
Title: Tools and Add-Ins for Visual Basic Migration
Registration link: Sign up today for live or on-demand viewing

Resources for after the webcast:

Happy upgrading!  If you have attempted or succeeded with a VB 6.0 -> VB 2005 upgrade, add a comment letting us know about your good or bad upgrade experiences.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Friday, 12 May 2006 21:34

Howdy,

I am so glad that it's Friday.  Those of you who attended yesterday's MSDN Event in Roseville, MN can attest to that.  To fill you in if you weren't there, my machine started to fail about 15 minutes before my event began.  When I say fail, I don't mean that it didn't turn on... in fact, everything appeared to be fine.  Until I opened Visual Studio.  After about 2 minutes, I got a message that VS 2005 needed to exit.  This continued for several iterations.  I eventually discovered that I had a corrupted wininet.dll, which prevented me from running Visual Studio, Internet Explorer (hard to demonstrate a web app without it) or even Windows Media Player (I couldn't even show a recording of the 3rd session on Web Parts).  Everyone in the audience was amazingly patient and supportive throughout my experience, which shall be referred to as the "Wininet/Loseinet Fiasco".  I have since recovered full use of my machine (I think) and decided it was high time to answer your "unanswerables" from this week:

Des Moines, IA

Q) Does the data access application block in Enterprise Library 2.0 support use of typed datasets?

A) Yes [see full details on the application block at http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnpag2/html/daab.asp]

Roseville, MN

Q) Is Enterprise Library 2.0 thread-safe?

A) The only application block that is explicitly listed as "thread safe" on the PAG website is the Caching Application Block (http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/en-us/dnpag2/html/caching1.asp).  I have emailed Tom Hollander, of the team that brought us the Enterprise Library, to confirm which blocks are thread safe.  Once I hear back from him, I will update this post.

In the mean time, have a great weekend!

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge"
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Date: Wednesday, 10 May 2006 06:57

Attend Wednesday's webcast on VB/.NET Interop
Time: Wednesday, May 10 at 9AM Pacific
Title: Creating Best-of-Both-Worlds Hybrid Applications with Visual Basic Fusion
Registration link: Sign up today for live or on-demand viewing

Resources for after the webcast:

Some additional resources from Paul Yuknewicz, VB Lead Program Manager:

Hi Jacob,

Thanks for hosting this talk.  I hope people liked it.

Here are a few goodies for your blog:

- Great interop, aka “VB Fusion” articles:
  o
http://msdn.microsoft.com/vbrun/vbfusion/
- Snippet for “Set desktop wallpaper” I used in the movie collection starter kit (attached)
- Download Amazon-enabled movie collection starter kit:
  o
http://msdn.microsoft.com/vbasic/downloads/starterkits/default.aspx
- Cool PInvoke article:
  o
http://msdn.microsoft.com/vbasic/default.aspx?pull=/library/en-us/dv_vstechart/html/pinvoke.asp
- Resource for other PInvokes:
  o
www.pinvoke.net

Best,
Paul

Attached Media: application/xml ( 1 ko)
Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Tuesday, 02 May 2006 23:24

Wednesday, May 3, 2005, 11 AM Central

Details: This webcast explores the what, why, and when of migrating from Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 to Visual Basic 2005. We will introduce and explain the migration decision matrix and present migration strategies from a high-level perspective. This session is a prerequisite for the two demonstration-based sessions to follow, covering Visual Basic Fusion (interoperability) and Visual Basic Migration.

View here: Best Practices for Upgrading Visual Basic 6.0 Assets to Visual Basic 2005

Resources for after Wednesday's webcast

Got any other useful upgrade/migration resources to share?  Comment below to share them with the community.

* PAG = Prescriptive Architecture Guidance (would also have accepted "Patterns and Practices")

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Tuesday, 25 Apr 2006 18:51

Wednesday, April 26, 2005, 11 AM Central

View here: Deploying Visual Basic 2005 Applications with ClickOnce

Resources for after Wednesday's webcast

Do you have other resources to share with the volkswebcast community?  Comment to this post with the resource that you find most useful when it comes to ClickOnce deployment.

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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Date: Wednesday, 19 Apr 2006 20:28

Q: In what file are the code snippets you create stored?

A: Code snippets are actually stored individually as *.snippet files, making them easy to migrate between developers and machines.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: what do the Meyers Briggs predictions on your desktop reveal about you?

A: You saw the file on my desktop, didn't you?  I have found self-reporting to be the main drawback against the value of Meyers-Briggs assessments.  As people develop, their "inlook" (internal outlook?) changes and they will report differently on assessments like Meyers-Briggs.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: How can you include not just Content specific Snippets, but browse through all VS snippets?

A: To view all snippets, you can use the Code Snippet Manager (Ctrl+B, Ctrl+K) inside Visual Studio 2005.  You could also create snippets without metadata that defines the suitable context; this may be appropriate if you have comments or TODO items to insert with some frequency.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: You talked about an design time evaluation window, how do I get to it?

A: You can use the Immediate window for design-time evaluation.  See this blog post for more information - http://blogs.msdn.com/vbteam/archive/2005/12/05/500252.aspx.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: Would you post a link for a 'compact' listing of the previous webcasts, sometimes the mass of option on , and also for your blog ;-)he main events page is daunting...

A: http://www.tinyurl.com/ecvrw will get you to my blog, specifically in the section on Visual Basic 2005.  Ironically, however, if you are reading this, you are already here.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: What does ecvrw stand for?

A: Darned if I know... TinyUrl.com generates small URLs from big ones, so it is likely either a hash formula or a random string of characters.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: When Can I expect my MP3 player? :)

A: I admire your confidence.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q: You should mention the free Discovery Pack @ http://www.thedifferenceisobviousvb05.com/Campaign.aspx. It includes a bunch of free stuff. You need to register there.

A: Good call.  The VB 2005 Discovery Pack is chock full of goodies.  I talked that team into promoting my webcast series and sharing the love by providing kits to all customers who attend 3 or more webcasts AND register through this website: http://www.thedifferenceisobviousvb05.com/vb2005/Campaign.aspx

Author: "MSDNArchive" Tags: "Developer Knowledge, Visual Basic 2005 T..."
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