High Speed Cell Modem Saves the Day

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27 February 2008

Yesterday I co-presented (with Anthony Handley, one of Magenic’s lead designers), giving a talk on building applications using XAML (WPF and Silverlight). It is a fun talk, because we spend the entire time walking through the process and code and design assets we used/created to build an application. And we discuss the great and not-so-great parts of using Visual Studio, Expression Blend, Expression Design, TFS and various other tools in such a collaborative project.

But I did something bad. Something I really know not to do, but sometimes you just get carried away I guess. My mistake? I tweaked some code right before going on stage. I should really know better…

So part way into our talk the code refuses to build. (in retrospect I know exactly what I did, I got two parameters backward on a method) Debugging on stage is never fun, and we surely didn’t have time for it in this talk!

Fortunately for us, Magenic provides all consultants with high speed cell modem service for our laptops. This meant we were connected at DSL speed to the Internet, and Anthony was able to quickly use TFS to undo pending changes to the file I’d tweaked. Which goes to show two things. First, good source control is invaluable. Second, Magenic’s belief that our consultants should have ubiquitous Internet access really pays off!!

What could have been a demo disaster, turned instead into illustration of the ease with which you can use TFS from within Visual Studio 2008 :)

(p.s. For those living in the Twin Cities area, Anthony and I will be giving a (free, I think) 3 hour version of this talk on April 24 at the Microsoft office in Minneapolis. I’m looking forward to that, because we have to gloss over so much stuff to fit the talk into 60-75 minutes, and it will be great to dig deeper into each sub-topic over a 3 hour period. Watch http://www.magenic.com for details on registration as the date gets closer.)