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February 2004

Slides and samples for my sessions at DevWeek London

I just uploaded the slides and samples for my talks at DevWeek London. If you attended one of my sessions, I'd really love to hear your feedback at ingo@ingorammer.com. Thanks!


  • Complete (1338 KB. All five sessions as PDFs + samples)

Single sessions

Meeting friends in London

Ok, I admit it: I love this city. More often than not, being in the conference business means flying into a city, doing some talks and returning ASAP. Whenever a conference takes place in London however, Katja and I really like to combine it with another couple of days of vacation. As DevWeek is about to end, I though that a farewell post would be in order.

Meeting Ian, Sebastien, Katja, Benjamin, Daniel @ the Cinnamon Club

Francesco and Dino at an excellent Japanese place

Kevlin and Jeff at the same Japanese place

No photo opportunity here

The London Eye. I'm still fascinated.

London: City of contrasts?

Some more contrasty buildings which are located ...

... just a few minutes walking distance from each other.

Next stop: Colombo, Sri Lanka. Leaving tomorrow.

100% Guaranteed Interpretation-Free Visio UML Shapes

In my opinion Visio is a little bit too anal-retentive when it comes to UML. One of the first things I download after repaving a machine is therefore Pavel Hruby's collection of guaranteed 100% interpretation free Visio UML stencils.

When using these shapes, Visio doesn't try to understand or verify your UML diagrams but allows you to just draw. Adding properties to a class for example does not mandate crawling through a four-layer-dialog but can instead be done by just typing in the corresponding part of the shape.

Great if you use Visio just as a documentation tool and not as a code generator. And you really wouldn't use Visio as a codegen, would you?

3 days. 2 cities. 5 talks. 1 tutorial.

Monday was an excellent day. I arrived at the airport on time, checked in, and spent another 50 minutes or so in the lounge before getting to the gates to leave for Developer and ITPro Days in Belgium. During the security check, I overheard the airport personnel muttering about "..... mhmhm .... snow ... mhmhmhmh ... bad luck ... mhhmhmhm".

Arriving at the gate it suddenly became clear to me. Snow. Lots of. Passing horizontally.

Long story short: I should have arrived at Brussels Airport at around 9:40 pm but - after several announcements along the lines of "this is your captain, we are going to depart in 60 minutes" and "this is your captain again ... err ... it might take another 60 minutes" - I finally managed to check in at my hotel at about 1:15 am. Good news of the day: the driver who should take me from Brussels to Ghent (45 minutes drive or so) was still waiting when the plane finally arrived. Wonderful!

I had a great slot on Tuesday: the first session right after the keynote. Approximately 250 to 300 people attended my talk on "Extensible Applications. Plugins and Scripting with Attributes, Reflection and Code Generation."

Lots of attendees in Belgium

Tuesday evening, I continued to Basta!2004 in Frankfurt/Germany, just right in time to join the evening BOFs. (on time, no more snow)

Evening BOF at Basta!2004, hosted by my friend Dr. Holger Schwichtenberg

The man behind Basta!2004 at another BOF

Wednesday was my Longhorn Day with sessions about Avalon, WinFS and Indigo. On Tuesday I did a full day tutorial on distributed application development today and in the future.

The week was fun! Next stop: DevWeek London in just about 10 days.

WinFS: Get a filename for an Item

Suppose you have a System.Storage.Item which is file backed and you need one of the underlying "original" file names:

ItemNameCollection foo = itm.GetItemNames();
foreach (ItemName name in foo)
   String path = name.FullPath;

Reason I'm posting this: I just spent way too much time in the debugger looking for this information. For obvious reasons, method return values aren't visible in the locals window. I hunted for a while, and traversed the tree dozens of times before I realized that this data might not be contained in a property but might instead be accessible only as a method return value.

Oracle Advanced Queuing with .NET

About a week ago, an attendee of one of my conference talks (OOP2004 in Munich, "Java and .NET - Interoperability beyond Web Services?") had an existing application using Oracle Advanced Queuing. He wanted to offload some server-side processing to a .NET component to allow for easier interop with COM components. I just stumbled upon a GotDotNet user sample which might provide a starting point for this case: How to use Oracle Advanced Queuing(AQ) from .net. Disclaimer: I didn't test it, nor do I know if the use of AQ is officially supported from a .NET environment.