As developers we often strive to build concise code in order to avoid useless ceremony that would distract from its purpose.
We do that by leveraging the syntactic sugar offered by the languages to reduce code verbosity and increase its expressiveness but it can become a trap and lead to code that does not do what is expected.
In this article, I’ll illustrate this point with a powerful C# feature: async methods.
If you’ve already developed COM APIs with .Net, typically in C# with VBA as the consuming language, you’ve probably leveraged two powerful features:
by-reference parameter passing that allows the API to change the input object itself, not only its content.
This is marked with ref in C#:
void LoadData(ref string data)
optional parameters that allow the caller to omit them when calling into the API:
void SaveData(string data = "DEFAULT")
Sometimes you want to have both for a parameter: the ability to omit it and to change it.
This is something COM supports but unfortunately this is not supported by C#.
Recently one of my customer needed precisely that for a COM API developed in C# migrated from VB6 where it was plug-and-play.
The original developers of the API had done a quick study and concluded that it was not possible with the new C# API and indeed it was not documented at all.
From experience I know that COM is not used a lot today and that resources are scarce, so, to be sure, I’ve done my due diligence and reexamined the issue, digging a little deeper and testing undocumented stuff.
I’ve finally found a solution that I would describe as a “trick”, because it’s not documented, and that I’ll present in detail in this article. Continue reading →
En tant que développeur et formateur WPF depuis plusieurs années les nouvelles orientations de Microsoft pour les plateformes clientes, avec la montée en puissance du tout nouveau WinRT, m’ont quelque peu inquiétées.
Et pour cause : j’ai directement subi l’échec et l’abandon de Silverlight et comme dit le proverbe “chat échaudé craint l’eau froide”.
Depuis 2009 j’ai beaucoup investi, personnellement et professionnellement, dans WPF, l’utilisant pour développer des applications LOB dans le secteur financier, et désormais je dispense même des formations sur le sujet.
Par conséquent le futur de WPF est critique pour moi, c’est pourquoi j’ai étudié cette question de l’avenir de WPF plus en détails, mettant en oeuvre mon expertise sur le sujet et ma récente découverte de WinRT.
Dans cet article je partagerai avec vous les résultats de cette “étude” en toute objectivité et transparence, afin de vous aider en tant que partie prenante dans votre veille technologique.
J’espère que vous fournirez vos propres informations, afin que la communauté toute entière puisse avoir une meilleure vision des perspectives pour WPF.
Dans la dernière partie de l’article je fournis des stratégies pour les entreprises et les développeurs utilisant WPF.
As a WPF developer for years I was recently concerned by the new direction chosen by Microsoft on its client platforms with the rise of the brand new WinRT framework.
I was concerned for good reasons: I’ve suffered from the collateral damages of the Silverlight failure, and as the proverb says “once bitten, twice shy”.
Since 2009 I have put a huge personal and professional investment in WPF, using it to develop LOB applications in the financial industry, and now I’m even providing training on this topic.
So as a professional developer and trainer the future of WPF is critical for me so I’ve studied this issue more thoroughly.
In this article I’ll share my findings with you, in a completely objective and transparent manner, and I hope you’ll provide your own facts, so that the community can have a better vision of the future of WPF.
In the last part of this article I provide some strategies for businesses and individual developers.
I’ve recently passed the Microsoft 70-483 “Programming in C#” certification which is one of the entry point into the .Net and WinRT developers certification cycles.
To be well prepared I’ve read the two books entirely dedicated to this certification : MCSD Certification Toolkit (Exam 70-483): Programming in C# and Exam Ref 70-483: Programming in C#.
I strongly recommend you read both of them if you intend to pass the certification.
Indeed both have been my main material to prepare for the certification and they have perfectly done the job.
This article is a complete review of MCSD Certification Toolkit (Exam 70-483): Programming in C#.
This is the first book you should read because I think this is the one that will best prepare you to get the certification, but paradoxically the worst from a technical point of view, and you will quickly understand why.
J’ai tout récemment passé et obtenu la certification Microsoft 70-483 “Programming in C#” qui est l’un des points d’entrée des cycles de certification développeur .Net et WinRT.
Pour m’y préparer j’ai notamment lu les 2 livres qui y sont dédiés (en anglais) : MCSD Certification Toolkit (Exam 70-483): Programming in C# et Programming in C#: Exam Ref 70-483 dont je vous conseille vivement la lecture.
Ils ont en effet constitué mon support principal pour la préparation de la certification et ont bien remplis leur office.
I’ve recently wanted to demonstrate the relevance of the .Net ReaderWriterLock[Slim] synchronization primitives.
It’s good to hear from the vendor that it’s better, faster, stronger, but when you can it’s always good to evaluate it yourself; not that I don’t trust vendors, but because I like to have hard numbers, particularly when I assert something that can be critical for my participants’ developments.
So I’ve built a small, simple and I hope relevant benchmark to measure the performance impact of ReaderWriterLock[Slim] compared to the naive and uniform use of a Monitor using the C# lock construct.
I wanted to check these two things:
that the RW locks behave as advertised,
what is the profile of the gain function.
In this article I’ll explain the rationales behind the benchmark, how I’ve implemented it and finally present the results.
First a warning, this is a difficult article which goes really deep inside the .Net machinery so if you don’t get it the first time (or even the second or third time…) don’t worry and come back later. 🙂
For a training session I’ve taught at the end of last year I wanted to demonstrate some subtleties of multi-threading, and more specifically some memory visibility issues that should cause a program to hang.
So I developed a small sample that I expected would be showing the issue, but instead of hanging as expected the program completed!
After manipulating the program further I obtained the behavior I wanted, the program was hanging, but it still didn’t explained why it managed to complete with my original version.
I suspected some JITter optimizations, and indeed it was the case, but I needed more information to completely explain this strange behavior.
As often, the StackOverflow platform was of great help; if you’re curious you can have a look at the original SO thread.
In this article I’ll “build” and explain the issue step by step, trying to make it more understandable than the SO thread which is indeed quite dry.