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Xamarin.Forms: Styles

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Xamarin.Forms 1.3 is now available in Community Preview 2 (the final community preview before release).  While this is not a release version, it is close and worth taking a look at.  It offers three new killer features: Styles Triggers Behaviors … Continue reading → For the complete article and hyperlinks, please visit my blog at

Rejuvenate Your Career

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Originally posted on: We can all get in a rut after years in this industry.  We get comfortable doing what we know.  The problem is that technology does not stand still.  If we don’t keep reinventing ourselves then we will eventually find that we don’t have the skills that the industry requires.  This is so important an issue that I often ask prospective employment candidates how they keep up with technology.  So what is my answer to rejuvenate your career? Because I spend most of my time developing solutions for the Microsoft technology stack my
examples will be bent more in that direction, but the basics stay the same regardless of the technology.  The the keys for me are to keep informed, pilot, get certified and teach. Keeping informed in this day has a lot of possible avenues.  Podcasts, blogs, Twitter and dedicated web sites give you a variety of sources to keep up with what is coming out.  At first grab everything you can find and then scale your sources back to just the ones that give you the most information for the time you invest. You also need to get your...(Read whole news on source site)

Docker Unveils Orchestration Services, Hub Enterprise -- ADTmag

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Docker Unveils Orchestration Services, Hub Enterprise -- ADTmag

The three services -- Docker Machine, Docker Swarm and Docker Compose, along with a new set of open APIs -- will provide a platform for multi-container, multi-host distributed applications

Docker Compose

able to assemble discreet containers representing individual services
into a complete application stack. Do it in a
declarative fashion through a simple configuration file that
allows them to define what containers are part of the app

and the dependencies among those containers, and then have a discreet
distributed app that is 100% portable across infrastructures. The service defines a distributed app stack
and its dependencies through a YAML configuration file

Docker Swarm 

is a Docker-native clustering solutions that works with
the Docker Engines. "It's provisioned by the host's service to define a
resource pool for your application and the containers they comprise

Docker Hub Enterprise (DHE), a new product addition to the Docker
platform designed to ...(Read whole news on source site)

Spinning the wheel: manipulating the odds

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The previous post defined a basic set of data structures and functions to spin a wheel of fortune in F#.

There was very little mystery to that implementation though. The physical wheel had four pockets and spinning the wheel would land you a win one out of four spins. As a casino, it's impossible to come up with an interesting payout using this model.

To juice up the pot, casinos started adding more pockets to the wheel of fortune. This meant that the odds were lower, but the possible gain was higher. More pockets also allowed
casinos to play with alternative payouts, such as multiple smaller pots instead of one big one.

Adding pockets to the wheel didn't turn out the way casinos hoped for though. Although players were drawn to a bigger price pot, they were more intimidated by the size of the wheel - it was obvious that the chances of winning were very slim now.

Today, instead of having the physical wheel determine randomness, randomness is determined virtually.

Casinos now define a second set of virtual indexes that map to the indexes of the physical wheel.

Azure: Premium Storage, RemoteApp, SQL Database Update, Live Media Streaming, Search and More

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Today we released a number of great enhancements to Microsoft Azure. These include: Premium Storage: New Premium high-performance Storage for Azure Virtual Machine workloads RemoteApp: General Availability of Azure RemoteApp service SQL Database: Enhancements to Azure SQL Databases Media Services: General Availability of Live Channels for Media Streaming Azure Search: Enhanced management experience, multi-language support and more DocumentDB: Support for Bulk Add Documents and Query Syntax Highlighting Site Recovery: General Availability of disaster recovery to Azure for branch offices and SMB customers Azure Active Directory: General Availability of Azure Active Directory application
proxy and password write back support All of these improvements are now available to use immediately (note that some features are still in preview).  Below are more details about them: Premium Storage: High-performance Storage for Virtual Machines I’m excited to announce the public preview of our new Azure Premium Storage offering. With the introduction of the new Premium Storage option, Azure now offers two types of durable storage: Premium Storage and Standard Storage. Premium Storage stores data durably on Solid State Drives (SSDs) and provides high performance, low latency, disk storage with consistent performance delivery guarantees.

Don't Get Sunk by Sunk Costs

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The other day I came across an article describing 8 mistakes our brains make subconsciously, and it struck me that I was experiencing one of them at that very moment, namely the sunk cost fallacy.
Let it go, already. (photo – "sunken skiff" by Jenny Spadafora) There's lots of information online about this phenomenon, so you can use your Google- or Bing-fu to find out more, but the short version is this: the sunk cost fallacy causes us to continue to invest (time, money, effort, etc.) into something beyond the point at which those
investments make sense, because we do not want to "throw away" the time, money, or effort we have already invested (the already made, or "sunk," cost). One example of the fallacy is the gambler who, having lost substantial amounts of money, continues to gamble in hopes of making back all the money they've lost. In reality, that money is gone for good. And given their previous results, a gambler who's lost substantial amounts of money would be better served walking away from the table, as their odds aren't improved by mere persistence. My Own Sunk Cost Example In my case,...(Read whole news on source site)