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Currently reading

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Just before I dive back into my other project, the one I don't talk about, I thought I'd post a short note about the pile of books that I'm currently reading...…

Another day learning the Linux way...

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My client has decided that we should ignore the video driver problem and press on with the proof of concept using the external VGA screen as a display. So this week was spent learning about building software for a machine running a minimal Linux installation using libc 2.3.2 on a machine running a proper distro using libc something else...…
Seems like I broke it when I added the GoogeAds for that feed... RSS 1.0 (full articles) RSS 2.0 (extracts)…

My own legacy code

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I've just started work on an ISO8583 server for a client. I've done similar work for them in the past and the first thing that I did was to take the basic shell of the last server that I did for them and update it to use all of latest version of The Server Framework. The next was to start to look at the first of the requirements for the new server. It was then that I realised that I was working with legacy code...…

A single responsibility, please

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Having got the CMessageProcessor under test in the last posting. I added a few easy tests for the object and then I came to another hard to add test. The reason that it was hard to add was that the object is doing a little too much.…

What's wrong with my CSS?

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My <pre> styling looks OK (to me at least) in IE 6 and horrible (double spaced and strange) in Firefox. Can anyone tell me why? The CSS looks like this: pre { color : #990000; font : "Courier New", Courier, monospace; font-size:small; font-weight:normal; padding : 5px; line-height:100%; }…
Sahil Malik doesn't agree with Jeremy Miller's description of excessive tracing being a code smell. He suggests a 'neat' way to get around the problem but, IMHO, he's completely missing the point, and I've said as much before. Oh, and I agree with Rockford, the 'neat' way stinks ;)…
There's a rather disappointing article on .Net sockets in this month's MSDN magazine.…

This should be interesting

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Richard Hale Shaw is writing some blog entries about moving away from C++ (to .Net). But then he would say that, wouldn't he. His job includes providing courses for people learning .Net... ;) Anyway, I'm sure it'll be an interesting series of articles, especially given his current views on C++...…
Robert Scoble, and others, are discussing blog search engines at present. It's quite interesting to see that there are lots of different approaches to the same problem. Mary Hodder's article is good in that it explains a bit about the differences in how Bloglines and Technorati get their figures. I guess it's early days in the blog search engine space but none of the existing offerings really do what I'd like ;) You see, I think that these search engines could help to reinforce the threads of conversation that permeate the world of blogs...…

Unit testing for speed?

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Simon is thinking about using unit testing to help with performance testing. Whilst I've found it useful to use unit tests as very focussed ways to run a profiler on a selection of code I don't think it's a good idea to tie the success of your test to it completing within a particular length of time. After all, you might decide to run all of your tests under a tool such as Boundschecker and it would be a pity to get false failures due to the fact that the test is running slower just because you're using some other…
Simon says; I've stopped using ?: because it isn't as readable as an if .. then .. else. ... I, personally, don't find the readability of the conditional operator (?:) a problem. No more than I find readability of assignments or pointer operations a problem. I can see how that since the conditional operator is only appropriate for use in certain circumstances, some programmers may not have come across it very often and for them it may be harder to understand than a construct that they know well. In C++ I find that I use the conditional operator most often…

Visual C++ 2005 loses single threaded CRT

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From C++ Potential. In a posting about changes to the compiler switches in Visual C++ 2005 Brandon mentions that they've removed the single threaded C runtime library options. Does anyone out there use the single threaded CRT anymore? I can't remember when I last used it. I doubt this will cause me or my clients any great problems and I guess VC6->VS2003 still works ;) for those for whom it is an issue.…

Setup and TearDown considered harmful?

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I'm glad that Brian Button went to the trouble of writing this post and thinking through the implications of shared setup and teardown code in tests. I've been a bit concerned about some of my tests for a while now. You see, I don't use a fancy framework, I just write them myself in C++ and generally there isn't much shared setup code because I don't find it that useful. Brian's insight that the duplication present in tests is often a good thing because it allows the test to communicate more clearly is pretty much what I've thought for a…
I'm currently adding some functionality to a server that I wrote, using The Server Framework, for a client last year. The server provides application gateway services for them. The new functionality is to switch to using asynchronous connect calls using ConnectEx when it's available on the platform that the server is running on and to continue to use a blocking connect if ConnectEx isn't available. As I mentioned in the posting back in Feb 2004 the performance counters that we add to these kinds of servers are invaluable in tracking down problems. Unusual life-signs indicate internal wierdness ;) Today I finished making…

Whilst on the subject of deadlocks

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It must be a deadlock kinda day. Pete McKinstry points to a Java deadlock avoidance scheme which involves knowing and using a total ordering of the locks that you wish to acquire. This is similar to Andrei Alexandrescu's C++ idea of always acquiring multiple locks in increasing memory address order. Both of these are fine if you can get at all of the locks from one place. I find that that's rarely the case and more often the locks are within objects and I don't want to break the encapsulation to expose the need to lock around a method so…

Blog Explosion just doesn't do it for me

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I've been attempting to boost the number of people reading this blog in the last few weeks. Mainly because the more people there are reading the more likely I am to get feedback in the form of comments and postings that link to me and I find the feedback really useful; having your views challenged is the best way to learn... Anyway, I started off by reading a load of good stuff over on Darren Rowse's ProBlogger blog and one of the postings was about a service called BlogExplosion. Unfortunately I think BlogExplosion's basic premise is fatally flawed. I don't…
I've been watching my web server logs in real time for the last couple of days, not intently; I do have a few slightly more interesting things to do. I've had a tail of the logs running on the laptop and I glance at it every now and then. What I've noticed is that the people who wrote whatever the software is that regularly tries to spam my comments are pretty crap. Sure the distributed nature of it is interesting but they really should deal with failures better. I recently "moved the front door" for my comments and trackbacks and…

Threading flames

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Thanks to Ned Batchelder for pointing out the "discussion" about the pros and cons of multi-threaded programming over on the SQLite newsgroup. The comments on Ned's post are well worth reading; they've provided me with a new blog to subscribe to, Jeff Darcy's Canned Platypus which seems to have lots of the kind of high quality techie stuff that I like. My view on multi-threading is probably pretty obvious given the way my socket server framework is designed...…
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This page is an archive of entries from July 2005 listed from newest to oldest.

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I usually write about C++ development on Windows platforms, but I often ramble on about other less technical stuff...

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