Codeguru Update eNewsletter - October 3rd, 2006

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CodeGuru Newsletter
October 3, 2006

http://www.CodeGuru.com

This newsletter is part of the Developer.com, EarthWeb, and internet.com networks.
Jupitermedia Corporation

___________________________ Sponsors ________________________________
Pegasus Imaging Corporation
_____________________________________________________________________
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TOPICS:

--> Editorial -
--> Recently Published Books

--> New on CodeGuru:
   Articles
        ==> Controls
                - Managing Nested GridView Controls
        ==> Database
                - Designing a SQL Service Broker Control Bus
        ==> Error Handling
                - Redirecting Configuration with a Custom Provider
        ==> Graphics / Dialogs
                - Animate a Modal Dialog
        ==> Java
                - In Search of a Perfect Singleton
        ==> Office Development
                - Report Solution Patterns and Recipes: Creating a Business Scorecard
                - Spreadsheets in ASP.NET
        ==> Security
                - .NET Tip: Creating a Password-Checking Function
        ==> System
                - Thunking in Win32

--> Discussion Groups -- HOT Threads
        - Tab control - Lparam (VC++)
        - Visual Basic Net, what a mess. (VB.NET)
        - Database Design

--> Highlighted new articles on Developer.com 
        1. An Introduction to Catastrophe Disentanglement
        2. Propagating Weblogic 8.x Portals
        3. Understanding the 2D Discrete Cosine Transform in Java, Part 2

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Comments from the Editor
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When you first start working with Windows Vista, you will find that there are a number of little things that have changed. You might initially think that it is all cosmetic with a few new annoyances, such as the User Account Control thrown in. The more you begin to use it, however, the more you will realize that Microsoft has truly made some big changes and has done quite a bit of tweaking to their operating system.

Over the coming months, I'll talk about some of these features in the newsletter. Additionally, I'm sure that the number of articles on Vista related topics will increase on the site as well.

Vista will impact you as a developer -- from the changes in some of the common dialogs, to the way things look, to the changes in security and memory usage, to the addition of .NET 3.0 support. These and many other things are going to impact you as a developer.

With Vista's planned release now being measured in weeks instead of years, it is about time to start looking at it. Of course, it isn't a released product yet, so missing drivers and screen glitches still riddle the product. Regardless, it is probably something you are going to want to start looking at soon if you haven't already.

There are a few things I found really cool in Vista. These don't necessarily impact your development, but if you take a look at Vista, then check out these:

ReadyBoost:
Using a USB drive's fast flash memory to boost your computer's RAM. This is simply a smart addition.

SuperFetch:
RAM is there, so why not use it? Instead of letting RAM sit idle as in prior versions of Windows, Vista will guess at what you are going to do next and try to preload things into memory. With access to the hard drive being the factor that slows down your system the most, this feature can save a lot of time if the guessing is good.

Icon Previews:
Chances are you have heard of the Aero interface if you have looked into Windows Vista at all. This new interface includes a lot of "eye candy." One feature that is not just hype is icon previews. Icons show you what they represent. For example, if you have a folder that contains pictures, the icon is a folder containing images of the pictures in the folder. Even more valuable are the previews you get when you hover over task bar buttons. In this case, instead of just getting a pop-up tip box saying what the button points to, you also get a small preview of the window. This makes it much easier to find the right window. The same previews are presented when you use Alt+Tab. This is eye candy that actually is helpful! The catch, because there is always a catch, is that you have to be running the Aero interface that requires a video card with at least 128 Bb of memory. If you have less than that, you don't get any of the eye candy or the cool previews.

Speech Recognition:
Speech has been weak in the past. It still has a long way to go; however, it is a lot closer to prime time. Windows Vista has included a built-in speech recognition program. By using the tutorial, you can quickly learn to use your microphone to control windows as well as to do dictation. I actually used the speech recognition in Vista to open Internet Explorer, go to the Codeguru forums, and enter a post. No keyboard or mouse were required. It wasn't perfect, but it worked well enough to mention it here!

These are just a few features of Vista. In the near future, I'll mention some controls and other features that might impact what you are doing as a developer. Like it or not, Vista is coming. While it might not seem ready now, there is a good chance that it truly will be released by the end of the year -- and that is only a few months away!

Until next week...

Brad!
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Bradley L. Jones
www.CodeGuru.com
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Recently Published Books
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For those of you keeping up by reading books. The following are just a few of the new books that have been recently released.  If you've read any of these, feel free to write a review to be posted on CodeGuru. See the submission guidelines at: http://www.codeguru.com/review-guidelines.php

--> Fundamentals of Game Design
      By Ernest Adams and Andrew Rollings for Prentice Hall
      600 pages for $77.33
      http://books.internet.com/books/0131687476

--> JavaScript(tm) Phrasebook: Essential Code and Commands
      By Christian Wenz for Sams Publishing
      240 pages for $14.99
      http://books.internet.com/books/0672328801

--> Professional Unix Shell Programming
      By Larry A. Walker for BookSurge Publishing
      320 pages for $23.99
      http://books.internet.com/books/1419637711

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New & Updated Articles on CodeGuru
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Following are short descriptions of new articles on CodeGuru. If you are interested in submitting your own article for inclusion on the site, then you will find guidelines located at http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,fka1,909i,jorm,i5r0

This week's CodeGuru posts:

================
====  Articles  ====
================

==> Controls

- Managing Nested GridView Controls
    By Paul Kimmel
There's an easy way to manage the complex ASP.NET presentations that involve nested grids and controls. Learn a reliable approach that leverages the observer pattern.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,lbwr,iqnt,jorm,i5r0

==> Database

- Designing a SQL Service Broker Control Bus
    By Jeffrey Juday
SQL Server Management Studio just doesn't cut it for complicated configuration and monitoring implementations. Learn how to implement your own SQL Service Broker (SSB) control bus solution to serve the needs of complex SQL Server-based messaging solutions.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,dp3o,a8zn,jorm,i5r0

==> Error Handling

- Redirecting Configuration with a Custom Provider
    By Stefan Schackow
Explores this helpful technique presented by Wrox author Stefan Schackow for working in ASP.NET in multiple environments from testing, to staging, to live, to backup servers.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,3tt4,3809,jorm,i5r0

==> Graphics / Dialogs

- Animate a Modal Dialog
    By Marius Bancila
Learn how to create a modal dialog with animations when shown or hidden.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,boeb,e6ar,jorm,i5r0

==> Java

- In Search of a Perfect Singleton
By The Saint
Learn how one person tried to come up with the perfect singleton. The article explores real-time experience and explains in the common developer's perspective.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,goe7,57hv,jorm,i5r0

==> Office Development

- Report Solution Patterns and Recipes: Creating a Business Scorecard
    By Paul Turley
WROX author Paul Turley shows us how to create a Business Scorecard that mimics the Microsoft Office Business Scorecard Manager.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,7s2m,2h10,jorm,i5r0

- Spreadsheets in ASP.NET
    By Uday Kiran Maloth
Finally, a spreadsheet can look good.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,3grk,ed8h,jorm,i5r0

==> Security

- .NET Tip: Creating a Password-Checking Function
    By Eric Smith
Password security is an easy way to tighten access to any application. Use this function to check a password against a set of rules, as well as a set of previously used passwords.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,82fn,id05,jorm,i5r0

==> System

- Thunking in Win32
    By einaros
Learn about an approach to creating thunks/trampolines to non-static member functions in 32-bit VC++.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,7qig,iniw,jorm,i5r0

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Discussion Groups
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Check out the CodeGuru discussion forums at:

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,bcr8,cx5j,jorm,i5r0

Forums include Visual C++, General C++, Visual Basic, Java, General Technology, C#, ASP.NET, XML, Help Wanted, and much, much, more!

... HOT THREADS ...

Some of the current threads with the most activity are:

==> Tab control - Lparam (VC++)
        http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,m2rs,kujf,jorm,i5r0

==> Visual Basic Net, what a mess. (VB.NET)
        http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,ke7q,2r9f,jorm,i5r0

==> Database Design
        http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,gsl8,ctw6,jorm,i5r0

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New Articles on Developer.com
==========================================================

Below are some of the new articles that have been posted to Developer.com (http://www.developer.com).

1. An Introduction to Catastrophe Disentanglement
    By E. M. Bennatan -
At what point should we define a software project as a catastrophe? What are the criteria for taking the drastic step of halting all activities, and how do we go about reassessing the project? And, most importantly, how do we go about getting the project moving again?

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,fptm,9rtg,jorm,i5r0

2. Propagating Weblogic 8.x Portals
    By Scott Nelson -
The propagation tool is here to rescue you from late hours and tedious tasks deploying your portal applications from staging to production (not to mention from developemnt to integration and integration to staging).

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,ghfw,hz1c,jorm,i5r0

3. Understanding the 2D Discrete Cosine Transform in Java, Part 2
    By Richard G. Baldwin -
Learn how to sub-divide an image before applying a forward and inverse 2D-Discrete Cosine Transform similar to the way it is done in the JPEG image compression algorithm.

http://nl.internet.com/ct.html?rtr=on&s=1,2r91,1,afvv,fle2,jorm,i5r0

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About the Author

Bradley L. Jones

bjones@jupitermedia.com

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