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Rants and Raves #6

August 19, 2009

Have you ever had a problem you couldn’t complain about?  Me too.  I have been so busy I haven’t had much time to post.  Between working like mad on a new project at work, learning several new technologies, traveling to Nashville for my first DevLink 2009, and a super-secret side project I’ve just been too swamped to post.

And I can’t complain: being this busy is a good thing, especially in this economy.

Rants

nHibernate – first crack

I was finally given the impetus to learn nHibernate, which I had heard about but never tried.  I’ve always assumed that cool kid tools like these are not for me since I am currently married to the AS/400 as a database.  I found at this past weekend, though, that I can in fact connect to the AS/400 using nHibernate, so I could finally have a decent OR/M tool for our database.  Getting rid of straight ADO.NET would be a dream come true!

Back at work this week, one of the first things I wanted to dive into was of course nHibernate, so I downloaded the code and began following the example touted on the nForge site.  The article is long and seemingly thorough, but it suffers from some serious organizational flaws. As I worked through it, my experience was decidedly different than the article suggested, although I was able to get it working with the help of the comments thread and a lot of Binging.

My biggest issue was the apparently recent requirement for adding a “proxyfactory.factory_class” xml element in the hibernate.cfg.xml file.  After doing so, you’ll find that you require a reference to NHibernate.ByteCode.LinFu.dll, which was not included in the SharedLibs list in the article.  After that, you’ll discover that you also require a reference to LinFu.DynamicProxy.dll, also not included in the SharedLibs list.  You can find both of these in the nHibernate subdirectory Required_For_LazyLoading/LinFu. (This can be altered to use Castle or Spring, both of which are included in the download).

I know I’m picking on one article, but if it is your go to “Hello World” demo, I expect it to be more refined.  Not to mention, it shows a lot but explains little.  I think it is especially difficult for someone with very little Unit Testing experience. There is going to be a lot of work ahead to grok the application, but so far it seems worthwhile.  Now I just need to get it hooked into my AS/400 and see if I can do some real work.

Raves

DevLink 2009

My list of “must-attend” Community Events is growing at a rapid pace, a little too rapid based on how busy I am, but what’s a geek to do?

This event was a little different than usual: my community buddy Kevin Griffin and I took our wives along to Nashville.  We had a great time, usually the two of us at conference and the two of them out sight-seeing.  I did get to go to the Gibson Showcase, where they make all the Gibson Mandolins, and the Country Music Hall of Fame.  My trip ended on a bit of a sour note: our family van of 10 years passed away and we had to get a rental for the ride home.

But the event was great!  As always, Open Spaces rocked, and I also saw some great presentations, which leads me to my next rave…

Shawn Wildermuth

Today is a first for Rants and Raves: I am raving about an individual person.

If you are remotely interested in Silverlight you’ve probably heard of Shawn Wildermuth.  C# MVP, INETA Speaker, Silverlight Insider, author, speaker, teacher, and much more: Shawn is a Tour de Force when it comes to Silverlight.

Fortunately for me, he was not only present at DevLink, but he sat in on my Open Space session about Silverlight.  I really appreciated the chance to discuss Silverlight up close and personal, and he gave me some great ideas for moving forward with my project. 

I then got to see his presentation called “Silverlight + MVVM = Easy”.  Meeting Shawn and learning at the foot of the master was the highlight of the trip for me (followed closely by getting to play a $25,000 Gibson F-5 Distressed Master Model” mandolin!)

I really admire that he is so involved in the community and that he freely shares his knowledge and skills. Thanks Shawn!

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  1. August 20, 2009 at 7:08 am
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