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Retrospective on the Aug 14th VS Online outage

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We had a pretty serious outage last Thursday all told it was a little over 5 hours.  The symptoms were that performance was so bad that the service was basically unavailable for most people (though there was some intermittent access as various mitigation steps were taken).  It started around 14:00 UTC and ended a little before 19:30 UTC.  This duration and severity makes this one of the worst incidents we’ve ever had on VS Online. We feel terrible about it and continue to be committed to doing everything we can to prevent outages.  I’m sorry for the problems it
caused.  The team worked tirelessly from Thursday through Sunday both to address the immediate health issues and to fix underlying bugs that might cause recurrences.  As you might imagine, for the past week, we’ve been hard at work trying to understand what happened and what changes we have to make to prevent such things in the future.  It is often very difficult to find proof of the exact trigger for outages but you can learn a ton by studying them closely. On an outage like this, there’s a set of questions I always ask, and they include:...(Read whole news on source site)

Survey for Web App developers or Cordova developers

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When it comes to ensuring that code quality is high, methods and approaches vary by developer. The Visual Studio team would like to hear about the ways in which you ensure high code quality. Specifically, we are looking to developers building hybrid apps using Apache Cordova™ and/or developers building web apps, to provide feedback on their experiences through our anonymous survey. Your feedback will provide direct input to support changes in future versions of Visual Studio. This survey can take as little as 5 minutes to complete. When filling out the survey, please indicate if you would like to participate
in user studies. We are also looking for developers willing to speak with us in 30 minute feedback sessions about their experiences. When completing the survey you may also opt in to our survey sweepstakes* for a chance to win a $100 or $50 gift card. Please pass this survey on to other developers who you think may want to provide input as well. Thanks! Pratap Lakshman Senior Program Manager, Visual Studio Client Platform Tools   The information you provide is entirely voluntary. If you do not wish to provide us with any information, please disregard this survey. By filling out and returning this survey,...(Read whole news on source site)

Random Link Roundup–8/22/2014

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Happy Friday again!  Here are more random, useful links I’ve come across over the last week. – nifty little tool for picking complimentary fonts! Just Say No to Justification – Design for Hackers author David Kadavy talks about why justification works in some mediums, but also illustrates why you shouldn’t use it on the web. React.js – JavaScript isn’t going away.  And the proliferation of tools to help you create JS apps isn’t slowing down.  Facebook’s React.js is another one you should look at… Three Feet from Gold
This is a great book that made me seriously re-evaluate how I view successful people.  If you are a frequent commuter like me, the Audible rendition is very enjoyable. System.Web.Optimization.Less – It is 2014.  LESS should be everywhere.  Unfortunately, the LESS story for ASP.NET MVC is pretty terrible.  This package makes it a little better, but be warned, because it uses dotLess, many newer LESS features won’t work correctly. C# 6.0 Pattern Matching – It took me a while to grok this new feature, but now that I understand it, I can see how it...(Read whole news on source site)

#1,142 – Setting Attached Property Value from Code

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You can change the value of an attached property for a given control from code by using the SetValue or SetCurrentValue methods.  You call these methods on the control that the property is attached to, passing in a reference to the property and the new value.  (SetCurrentValue is preferred, to avoid overwriting a local value). Below, we set a […]

PostSharp 3.2 gets RC, renamed PostSharp 4.0 RC

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When we announced PostSharp 3.2 Preview, many of you shared your experience about the new features – especially threading models and undo/redo. We found it was such a significant release it would deserve a major version increase. So today, we’re proud to announce the availability of PostSharp 4.0 RC. There will be no PostSharp 3.2 release. PostSharp 3.2 has just been renumbered 4.0. You can download PostSharp 4.0 RC from our web site. After you install the Visual Studio Extension, you can update your existing projects using NuGet Package Manager, by enabling the “pre-release” option. What’s New in PostSharp 4.0? Write thread-safe
code in C# and VB using threading design patterns Multithreading is difficult because we are reasoning about it at an absurdly low level of abstraction. Functional programming languages attempt to solve this problem by forcing you into a specific threading design pattern: Immutable Object. However, object-oriented programming is the right paradigm for most business applications. PostSharp 4.0 brings the benefits of threading patterns to C# and VB. Instead of migrating your whole project to a different language, mark individual classes with one of the following custom attributes: [Actor], [Immutable], [Freezable], [Synchronized], [ReaderWriterSynchronized], [ThreadAffine] or (the anti-model) [ThreadUnsafe]. PostSharp will then ensure that...(Read whole news on source site)

Abstracting functionality

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Originally posted on: is more important than data? Functionality. Yes, I strongly believe we should switch to a functionality over data mindset in programming. Or actually switch back to it. Focus on functionality Functionality once was at the core of software development. Back when algorithms were the first thing you heard about in CS classes. Sure, data structures, too, were important - but always from the point of view of algorithms. (Niklaus Wirth gave one of his books the title “Algorithms + Data Structures” instead of “Data Structures + Algorithms” for a reason.) The reason for the
focus on functionality? Firstly, because software was and is about doing stuff. Secondly because sufficient performance was hard to achieve, and only thirdly memory efficiency. But then hardware became more powerful. That gave rise to a new mindset: object orientation. And with it functionality was devalued. Data took over its place as the most important aspect. Now discussions revolved around structures motivated by data relationships. (John Beidler gave his book the title “Data Structures and Algorithms: An Object Oriented Approach” instead of the other way around for a reason.) Sure, this data could be embellished with functionality. But nevertheless...(Read whole news on source site)