March 2003 Blog Posts

Magic, The User Inteface Library for .NET

The .NET Framework contains a wide range of user interface controls, but they offer only a basic look and feel. Today's user expects a richer experience that you just cannot build with the out-of-the-box controls.

The Magic Library aims to solve this by providing a set of user interface elements that add the sophistication expected from modern Windows applications.

The library can be used from any managed .NET language such as C# and VB.NET and comes with full source code, sample applications, documentation and a signed assembly.

You can include the Magic Library in your own private or commerical applications free of charge. See the readme.html in the download for full license terms.

(Found via the WindowsForms.NET site).

MSF Resource Library To make it easy for customers to learn and apply the Microsoft Solutions Framework (MSF), Microsoft has created materials and services delivered by Microsoft and Microsoft Certified Partners.

Running the World's Busiest Corporate Web Site on Windows Server 2003

When Microsoft released Windows Server 2003 Release Candidate 1 (RC1) in late July 2002, the new operating system was already 100 percent deployed by one critical launch partner: Microsoft.com.
...
"Our confidence in Windows Server 2003," says Stucky, "is higher than in any previous operating system."

Cool game written in Flash. Oh, and do "aim for the brain" - nice animation. :o)

Amaya - W3C's Editor/Browser

"Amaya started as an HTML + CSS style sheets editor. Since that time it was extended to support XML and an increasing number of XML applications such as the XHTML family, MathML, and SVG. It allows all those vocabularies to be edited simultaneously in compound documents."

"Amaya includes a collaborative annotation application based on Resource Description Framework (RDF), XLink, and XPointer. Visit theAnnotea projecthome page."

RDF Primer Primer"The Resource Description Framework (RDF) is a system for storing and sharing data between computer programs. This document will help you understand the important pieces of RDF quickly and then walk you through writing your own RDF files, and creating your own types of RDF information (often called RDF vocabularies or schemas)."

A good introduction to what RDF looks like although I had to read the bit about reification  couple of times to get it.

LumiSoft Mail Server is written in C# with source. The site says the program is freeware although it isn't clear what license the source is released under.

The site says it features:

  • Supports multiple domains
  • Supports multiple e-address for one mailbox
  • Supports aliases(Mailing lists)
  • Supports email routing. eg *ivar* pattern routes all addresses containing ivar to specified mailbox or remote address
  • IP access filtering
  • SMTP AUTH (LOGIN) (supported authentication types)
  • SMTP SIZE, PIPELINING, 8BITMIME support
  • POP3 APOP command
  • POP3 remote accounts
  • User mailbox size limit
  • Full MS SQL server support
  • Nice GUI for administation
  • Well commented source included

HTTP API / http.sys / Sam talks about IIS6. The New Request Processing Architecture of IIS 6.0/Win2K3. [Sam Gentile's Blog]
Sam tells how IIS uses http.sys. My side note is that you too can use port 80 while IIS is running via the new Win2k3 Http API. ;) [Doubt's log]

Craig Andera asked "How can I take advantage of this to have my app listen on an arbitrary endpoint on port 80?" too. I guess this API is the answer.

I'm running Outlook 2003 B2 and I have a problem using VBA if my account doesn't have administrator access (maybe power user but I only tried admin). If I try to access any of the items on the Macros menu, nothing happens. If I add myself to the Administrators group then everything works as expected. I upgraded from Office XP and I could run macros fine with that. I've tried uninstalling VBA and reinstalling and then uninstalling the whole of Office and reinstalling but to no avail. I don't really want to go back to running with admin rights but there are a couple of macros I use regularly that I don't really want to live without. I can load VBA fine from, say, Word.

The Loader Lock Issue. If you're using Managed C++, read and understandthis. It's big, it's important, and worthwhile to keep in mind.... [Commonality]

I wonder how many people remember the restrictions in DllMain in every day Win32 programming (probably not me!).

A commentor pointed me to this fantastic article in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology entitled Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments. Here's the abstract:

People tend to hold overly favorable views of their abilities in many social and intellectual domains. The authors suggest that this overestimation occurs, in part, because people who are unskilled in these domains suffer a dual burden: Not only do these people reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the metacognitive ability to realize it. Across 4 studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability. Although their test scores put them in the 12th percentile, they estimated themselves to be in the 62nd. Several analyses linked this miscalibration to deficits in metacognitive skill, or the capacity to distinguish accuracy from error. Paradoxically, improving the skills of participants, and thus increasing their metacognitive competence, helped them recognize the limitations of their abilities.

[ Green Hat Journal: Blissfully Ignorant] [via CraigBlog]