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February 20, 2006

Ever run into Bidi?

One of the interesting acronyms that I have run into in SharePoint is Bidi.  I never really knew what it was  and frankly I put into the category of “I hope I don’t have to know.”  I mean really, there are so many things you HAVE to know in SharePoint to get anything done, can’t I get by without knowing what BiDi is?

I found out the answer is no, I don’t have to know what Bidi is … until I go to multi-lingual sites.  I stumbled across it in a blog post for IE.

Professional .NET 2.0 Generics

Book Review-Professional .NET 2.0 Generics

I was trying to post a comment today to check out a book — a book that I had read and thought I had blogged about but apparently I blogged about it in a dream.  (Yea, I know sick)

The book is Professional .NET 2.0 Generics while I can certainly tear apart some of the mechanics of the book, overall it’s a thorough coverage of the topic both from a breadth and from a depth perspective.  I remember learning more about how the CLR works and the impact of a compile time vs. run-time type generation than I thought possible.

If you’ve got more than a passing interest in generics you should check it out.  You never know, you may just become the generics expert at your organization.

Getting Jr. Developers to Review Sr. Developers Code

Ben Fulton was at a recent presentation I gave on the Impact of Coding Standards and Code Reviews on Quality while reviewing some of my referrers I came across a link to his blog.  (Yes, I do occasionally go into my referrers, mainly to thank people for the link — thanks Ben.)

The one question that he raised on his blog that I didn’t fully understand during the presentation was “How do you get a Jr. Developer to review a Sr. Developer’s code?”  Here are a few of my thoughts on this…

1) It’s a lot about personality and relationship.  If you make the developer understand that it’s not about experience or position and is just about working together as a team it gets easier.  I find that it starts to become natural after the culture shifts towards people doing reviews as a habit.  Trying to make the Jr review the Sr developers work as the first thing is a bad idea.

2) It doesn’t have to be a formal code review to have value.  I can’t say that the majority of times that I hand code over to a Jr developer that they do a full code review.  However, I do make it clear that it’s their name that’s checking it into source control so they’re responsible for it.  If I make a mistake they will be held to fixing it by their peers.  It’s a part of the team commitment.  So they may not send me back a complete set of comments, however, my hope is that they at least read the code.

3) If you can’t get comments at least get a read.  Code reviews seem to work based on a whole bunch of factors.  Simply reading each other’s code makes everyone better.  It helps you understand what the other members of the team are working on and exposes potential descrepancies between your interpretation or understanding and theirs.  This is a good thing.

At any rate.  Good luck with getting code reviews to work in your organization.

Micro ISV: From Vision to Reality

Book Review-Micro-ISV

When I blogged about Software that Sells: A Practical Guide to Developing and Marketing Your Software Project I commented that there wasn’t much information that was in the book that I didn’t already know.  The guide was really very light on details.  Micro-ISV: From Vision to Reality is a very different story.  I found all kinds of things in the book that were interesting.

I rarely “dog ear” a book these days.  I make it a point to have a pad of paper and pen with me when I’m reading a book.  That’s mostly so I can record my thoughts.  Sometimes I’ll stop reading and start frantically scribbling notes.  Anyway, it’s lead to a lot of books that don’t get “dog eared.”  I even have tape flags that I use to mark what page I’m on — thus no “dog earing.”

However, I haven’t even made it through all of the pages I “dog eared” in Micro-ISV.  There seemed to be a new web site or product that I didn’t know about on every page.  Admittedly Micro-ISV will have a relatively short shelf-life in terms of it’s value because web sites change and companiese go out of business.  However, for now, it’s a great reference for those who are struggling to get a product company going.

The other interesting thing about the book is that it has a great number of interviews in it.  Real people with real problems not unlike your own talking about them.  All in all, a good read.  (I suppose it doesn’t hurt that the author is a former reporter.)

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