Flotzam – A Twitter, Facebook, Flickr & RSS Mash-up

 

image  Watch the flotsam and jetsam of data that you care about in this mash-up of Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, YouTube, Digg and RSS blogs. Using this simple application, you can configure what you want to watch and the speed in which you see it. Want to view what your Twitter friends are doing? Want to see the photos your friends have posted on Facebook? Or maybe their photos on Flickr, too? Download now and have all of your photos, Tweets, Diggs, Facebook invites & pokes and feeds come to you!

Being a WPF application, Flotzam can be easily restyled. From the enter/exit transitions for new items to the overall visual look and feel of the Flotzam interface, you can do almost anything you want just by tweaking the XAML mark-up.

Blog: http://flotzam.com/blog/

Source Code: http://flotzam.com/download/SourceCode/Flotzamsource.zip

Flotzam – A Twitter, Facebook, Flickr & RSS Mash-up

Distributed state management for ASP.NET

 

The more I delve into distributed architectures, the more I’m feeling like Microsoft just isn’t providing much of a path forward to scalable distributed systems. Case in point: state management.
By default, session state in ASP.NET is stored in the web server’s memory. To share state across servers – which you would want to do in a server farm – you need to store it in SQL Server or in the .NET state service. This is fine for small solutions, but once you bump up against the need to partition state across many servers or multiple hosting locations, things start to get complex and expensive.

Solutions:

ASP.NET SessionStateStoreProviderBase

Using JavaSpaces from .NET

3rd Parties: ScaleOut, NCache, GigaSpaces

 

Via using Enterprise.Architecture;: Distributed state management for ASP.NET

.NET Framework Library Source Code available for viewing

 

It’s live and you can give it a try now! Ten minutes ago Shawn and Scott released the hounds. If you’d like to step through .NET Framework Source code, here’s what you need to do.

  1. Install this QFE.
  • Note, if you’re on 64-bit Windows, read the description as there is a single manual step for 64-bit folks like me.
  • Go into Tools|Options|Debugging|General and turn off “Enable Just My Code” and turn on “Enable Source Server.”
  • Go to Symbols and add this URL http://referencesource.microsoft.com/symbols and a local cache path. Make sure “search only when symbols are loaded manually” is checked.

     

  • Via .NET Framework Library Source Code available for viewing

    We’ve Released the News Reader SDK (Open Source)! Just like the NYT Reader

     

    image

    The New York Times reader is based on this SDK. To allow newspapers and content publishers to create rich, “occasionally-connected” experiences based on the flow layout capabilities in WPF.

    The reader toolkit is called Syndicated Client Experiences Starter Kit. This reflects its potential to go beyond a news reading scenario and handle other kinds of data synchronization and display needs.

    We’ve also created a sample MSDN Magazine reader application built with the starter kit, which is of course also provided with full source code.

    Via We’ve Released the News Reader SDK!

    LongJump Launches Cloud Database Service

     

    LongJump, offering “Database-as-a-Service (DaaS)” that allows the more technically literate to build applications with databases in the “cloud” (i.e. stored on LongJump’s servers).

    Most of LongJump’s value has hitherto been relevant for the type of people who don’t have the expertise or initiative necessary to develop DB applications

    LongJump, with access to its REST-based API included, costs $24.95 per user per month, or $19.95 per user per month with a 12-month commitment. Competitor SalesForce has a similar type of API but one which is SOAP-based. LongJump’s offering differs from Amazon’s newly released SimpleDB service by functioning as a MySQL-based relational database service, whereas SimpleDB possesses its own architecture. For more information on LongJump’s API, check out the company’s API guide.

     

    Via LongJump Launches Cloud Database Service

    The Stopwatch Class in .NET 2.0

     

    Do you ever find yourself using DateTime to time a section of code?  If you do, you should look at the System.Diagnostics.Stopwatch class that was introduced in the 2.0 framework.

      Stopwatch stopwatch = new Stopwatch();
      stopwatch.Start();
    
      Thread.Sleep( 1968 ); // Perform a long process 
    
      stopwatch.Stop();
      Console.WriteLine( “This process took {0} ms”, stopwatch.ElapsedMilliseconds );

    The Stopwatch measures elapsed time by counting timer ticks in the underlying timer mechanism. If the installed hardware and operating system support a high-resolution performance counter, then the Stopwatch class uses that counter to measure elapsed time. Otherwise, the Stopwatch class uses the system timer to measure elapsed time. Use the Frequency and IsHighResolution fields to determine the precision and resolution of the Stopwatch timing implementation.

    Microsoft Sync Framework Support in Visual Studio 2008

     

    Microsoft Sync Framework is transport agnostic platform for automatic data synchronization across different types of datasources. It can be used for occasionally connected applications (smart clients) and p2p supplications. Previously we had to either use SQL server merge replication or write own synchronization framework. And now we have a solution from Microsoft that looks very promising. There is a good documentation for this on MSDN, if you need more details or code samples you will find them there.

    While playing with Visual Studio 2008, I accidentally found new item type called “Local Database Cache”. I turned out that this is really Microsoft Sync Framework integration with Visual Studio.

    image

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    Microsoft Sync Framework Support in Visual Studio 2008

    Using WebHttpBinding & JSON Support in WCF

     

    I had some cool time working with WCF new features shipped with .net 3.5, one of the most ineteresting and useful features is the JSON support and how easy you can enable the JSON support for your current WCF services by changing the configurations.

    Why do we need JSON support?

    Well, JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) is very suitable for building ajax based applications for some reasons.

    1. The other popular alternative (XML) requires parsing code in the client side to extract the data from the document, which is not the best thing to do using Javascript.
    2. XML documents size are relatively bigger than JSON documents containing the same data

    To get more info about JSON check here and here

    What WCF offers to support JSON

    All what you need is doing two things

    1. Create an end point that uses the new binding (WebHttpBinding)
    2. Configure the end point behavior and enabling the WebScript (which will generate a javascript proxy for your service contract and data contracts)

    And More…

    Via Using WebHttpBinding & JSON Support in WCF

    Creating custom LINQ provider using Open Source – LinqExtender

     

    Mehfuz shows how to create a custom LINQ provider using the open source project LINQExtender.

    In my previous article – LINQ provider basics – I have explained how LINQ to Entity work. I used examples mostly from my LINQ.Flickr project. Although creating a provider is fun, there are some repetitive tasks along the way, like expression processing and data extraction. Therefore things could be much easier with a common framework that takes care of complexes and monotonous tasks, while developers are presented with a simple model, by which they can get going with their providers without any expression overhead.

    LinqExtender exposes such model, which lets the developer focus only on the application logic – not on the query internals – while creating custom home made providers. It sits between the core LINQ framework and a custom provider.

    Creating custom LINQ provider using LinqExtender