Tech Tock

Time is of the essence.

Late to the Party Again

I just cut the cable and couldn’t be happier.  I could swear Netflix through my Roku image at only 10 Mbs (actual speed is usually closer to 8 – I have RCN) is clearer than my old cable picture (Time Warner) and I get almost the same stuff for $150 less per month.  Insane.  Now I’m part of the 1 in 8 who will cut cable this year.

I just started using an RSS reader literally last week, so I’m no trendsetter.  It might be quite a while for me to use a phone instead of cash or credit.

April 30, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment


Back by popular demand.  A semi-regular review of lab life as seen through my computer screen and sometimes in person.  A lot has happened since I last posted, here’s just a brief summary.

Strategery Seminar

We heard a great talk from the Lab49 Strategy Practice.  We’ve got a team that can analyze markets and business decisions, perform original research and apply analytical methods.  They can describe it much better than I can too.  They’re mostly MBAs, but unlike George Bush, they speak very clearly.

The Tao of Var

What does the var keyword in JavaScript do?  You can declare a variable just by using it, so what does var do?  Answer below.

The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyersThe Bull, the Bear, and the Python

I think its cool that contracts may be specified in programming languages.  The SEC proposal is here.  Lab49ers picked apart the language choice, its operational semantics, and non-termination and exclusion thereof.  I just think its cool.


A gaggle of Lab49ers, including one of our esteemed fearless leaders, caught the Rush documentary the other day.

iPad pants Spoof of the day: iPad pantsoh my Godit’s full of stars

Plenty of early adopters around here, so I’ve seen the IPad…. and …  its …


Can You Code a Binary Search?

I can, but I might not get it perfectly right the first time and I don’t have a problem with that…  On the other hand, I might, maybe its just a question of mindset and motivation.  With a computer telling me I’m not perfect 100 times a day, I wouldn’t state anything with certainty.  This guy says that’s no good.  Here’s some reasons I might want to care.

Now Using Code Behind – Horrors

Some third party controls are being unwieldy with MVVM and forcing us to use code behind as the least worst option. Its a 1% problem, so its probably not a new holy war.

Blog Catchup

I’ve been away from the blog for a while and missed quite a bit – here’s some things you may have missed on the Lab49 Blog – I did:

Videos:  Bruce Kyle of Microsoft and MVP Stuart Celarier explore the new languages features in C# 4.0

InfoGraphics are informative?  click here for the answer.

Pomodoro?  I wonder if the Pomodoro Technique has any applicability to programmers.  If the problem is interesting or exciting enough, I’ll usually work until full exhaustion, then after swearing I’ll only work a few more minutes, work several more hours, sometimes I only stop when the router dies.  Thanks, but I’ll pass Ray.

Colors for men and women.

Fed, Frannie and Freddie — As told by Paddy Hirsch.

Silverlight Analytics framework released at Mix.


Var is a scoping keyword and limits a variable to the current function (or closure), so if you don’t use the var keyword, you’re using a global variable, even if you declare it within the function.

April 27, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Focus on Silverlight App At Startup – Problem Solved

I finally figured out the way to set focus to a Silverlight control on start-up:  just set focus to your app, then set the control focus on the dispatcher to give the app time to process whatever it needs to when it gets focus.  In other words, in the root visual constructor use this code:

Dispatcher.BeginInvoke(() => YourControl.Focus());

This may be the first (and probably the last) actual Silverlight mystery I have solved.  A couple months ago, I was searching the internet for the way to do this and found absolutely nothing.

Yippee-Kai-Yay for me 😉

April 20, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 3 Comments