stack overflow

June 2, 2009

It has been many years since I started programming computers and a lot has changed in that time. On the one hand all this new technology and changes leads to lots of questions, while on the other we have lots of new ways to get answers. For a long time now it has been common to simply Google the internet for answers.

Now there is a great new resource for programmers; stack overflow. It is for one thing only, to ask questions and get answers about programming. This site is so good that one can ask a question and get multiple answers in literally minutes.

The story behind stack overflow is fascinating. For the details watch this video.

Microsoft Robotics Studio

April 8, 2009

As part of my work for TTA Marine, I have been doing lots of work to interface sensors and other marine electronic devices to computers running Microsoft Windows. Jeff Barnes of Microsoft suggested I take a look at Microsoft’s Robotics Studio, pointing out that its CCR/DSS component is good for applications far beyond robots.

For hard core programmers looking for an example of the kinds of things the CCR/DSS is good for, I suggest you take a look at Igor Moochnick’s PowerPoint presentation Concurrency and Coordination Runtime (CCR): No More Asynchronous Spaghetti. Igor wrote a web crawler (think Google search engine) using the product and has the source code for this and his other examples available for download. Get the presentation and sample code at

Getting back to Jeff Barnes, I want to extend a big thank you to him for turning me onto this technology! While it is definitely not an easy learning curve, it holds lots of promise. Jeff has done an excellent presentation titled “Silver GPS – Overview of an end-to-end Mobile GPS tracking application using the .NET Compact Framework, WCF, LINQ, Silverlight, and Virtual Earth” once again full source code is included. While Jeff does not use code from the Robotics Studio for this presentation, he has for several others.