Idempotency for Windows Azure Message Queues

Idempotency is the mathematical term used to describe a system that produces the same result when a formula or procedure is applied numerous times against the same target. In software systems, this translates to an ability to perform an operation more than one time with knowledge that the resulting state of the system will be…

MEF instead of PRISM for Silverlight 3 Part 1 of 2: Dynamic Module Loading

Recently I’ve been having lots of conversations about the Managed Extensibility Framework (MEF), the Composite Application Library (CAL or PRISM), and how they relate. One point of confusion that many people has comes when they try to force the two solutions to work together. In a recent conversation, I mentioned that PRISM has some great…

Vancouver Olympics – How’d We Do That?

The Silverlight team recently posted a blog entry entitled “Vancouver Olympics – How’d we do That?” in which they detailed the massive effort across multiple partners to pull together the on-line solution for streaming HD videos, both live and on demand. This was an exciting post for Wintellect and me because it detailed the effort…

Top 10 Silverlight Myths and the Facts to Bust Them

Silverlight is a client side plug-in based technology that has been in production since late 2007. I’ve been a web developer for well over a decade now, and recently have focused almost exclusively on Silverlight since version 3.0 was released. It astounds me how many people still resist Silverlight because they either don’t understand what…

A Fluent RSS Reader for Silverlight Part 2: NDepends on What you Need

NDepend is a product that analyzes large code bases and provides information about dependencies, complexity of code, best practices, and more. While designed to help manage large code bases, it also works well as a “reality check” as you are developing new projects. The latest release supports Silverlight and I’ll be using it to clean…

Windows Phone 7 Series (Formerly called Windows Mobile 7)

There has been a lot of buzz around Microsoft’s latest mobile phone operating system. I hope to be involved with this product as much as possible and will blog the detals that I can as they are made available. While the buzz has referred to this as “Windows Mobile 7” the platform has been officially…

Windows Communication Foundation Data Services (Astoria) – The Stuff They Should Have Told You Before You Started

Entity Framework derived types support inheritance and relationships, just as you’d expect from any Object Relational Mapper tool (ORM) Windows Communication Foundation Data Services (Astoria) throws an exception if your derived entities have relationships. That means if a Contact, a Lead, and a Doctor all inherit from a Person… and derived entities have different needs…

Silverlight 4’s New INavigationContentLoader Interface

One of the extensibility points added to the run-time in Silverlight 4 is the new INavigationContentLoader interface, which allows applications that use Silverlight’s navigation framework to take control of page loading. In Silverlight 3, navigation URIs had to target XAML files containing Silverlight pages. In Silverlight 4, a navigation URI can target anything—a class name,…

A Fluent RSS Reader for Silverlight Part 1: Proof of Concept

One of the most common examples to help learn a language or framework is an RSS Reader. This is an ideal mini-project because it includes networking, parsing XML, and binding to data elements such as lists. I wanted to provide an example that shows some more interesting solutions that are possible using C# in Silverlight.…

Using Moq with Silverlight for Advanced Unit Tests

Moq is a library that assists with running unit tests by providing easily mocked objects that implement interfaces and abstract classes. You can learn more about Moq on their website. There is a distribution for Silverlight, and in this post I’ll focus on some ways to use Moq for some more involved testing scenarios. Download…

Microsoft Online Services: Very Cool (and Cheap!)

This is not a technical post, but one that bumps into business. Yes, occasionally us software developers have to lift our heads up and see that there’s more to life than hacking code. This is especially true at small companies, such as Wintellect, were the effort to do business means you can’t just hide in…

Programmatically Accessing the Live Smooth Streaming API

Live Smooth Streaming is a Microsoft technology that allows you to take a live, encoded, incoming video stream and rebroadcast it using Smooth Streaming technology. This technology multicasts the video stream in segments of varying bandwidths. This can then be played with a Silverlight-based client like the built-in MediaElement or more advanced player like the…