Friday, 30 May 2014

My Personal Brand Survey Results (2014)

In the last few years, I read some books about personal branding and pretty much all of them highly recommend to take an anonymous 360 degrees surveys in order to understand how people perceive you.

For this reason, I decided to give it a go and try.

After a little bit of research I decided to use the 360 Reach platform. The survey is completely free for 15 days but I decided to pay for a premium version in order to get more results and a detailed report out of it.

In this post I am going to share with you the most interesting results.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Preparing for Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012

Few months ago I joined Red Gate Software and I am having a lot of fun so far. We have a great team in SQL Compare and we are working hard to add support for SQL Server 2014.

I think that learning more about SQL Server is very important because a lot of Red Gate products are designed to make DBA and developers working with it in a very productive way.

This is why I decided to start the path toward becoming a MCSA on SQL Server. To be honest, as a developer, my goal is just learning more about SQL Server and not necessarily get certified. However I will use the certification materials as a clear path to increase my knowledge.

The first exam on the list is
[70-461] Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012

I know SQL and I have studied database development and design at University. However I don't know much about SQL Server specific features and the incredible power that the platform can offer. 

In order to keep me motivated I will post on my blog all the things I found interesting during my learning.

The following is a list of all the resources I will use to prepare for this exam:

It's time to write SQL :)

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Growing Object Oriented Software, Guided By Tests

Few weeks ago I finished to read the famous book
Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests

In this post, I try to summarize what I think is the most interesting content.

The book present the interesting approach of starting a new project with a Walking Skeleton that is a tiny implementation of the system that performs a small end-to-end function
The point of the walking skeleton is to help us understand the requirements well enough to propose and validate a broad-brush system structure.
In most Agile projects, there’s a first stage where the team is doing initial analysis, setting up its physical and technical environments, and otherwise getting started. This is usually called Iteration Zero.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Top 10 Debugging Tips in Visual Studio 2013

I watched the "Debugging Tips and Tricks in Visual Studio 2013" session from TechEd and I found some very interesting debugging tips I was mainly unaware of.

Run to Cursor (CTRL + F10)

Run the debugger and stop in the location of your cursor. This allows you to debug your code from a particular location without the need to set a breakpoint. This is useful because often people create breakpoints but forget to remove them and the debugging becomes very slow.

You can start your application and automatically break at the first line of code. This avoid you to manually find the entry point of the application.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Thank you BASIC!

The first of May 2014 was the 50th Birthday of BASIC.

I couldn't resist the temptation to write a post on it because BASIC has been my first programming language and I have used it for more than 9 years. Seriously? Yeah :)

Actually, I didn't write BASIC programs on a PC but on Casio calculators using a variant called Casio BASIC.

This was the power of my first programming language :)
Casio graphic calculators use a BASIC-like programming language but variable names are restricted to single letters A-Z which are shared by all programs including subroutines which are stored as separate programs. This means there are no local variables, they are all global. These variables are also shared by other functions of the calculator. For example, drawing a graph will overwrite the X and Y values.
Everyone who grow up with me knows that I never walked without my calculator in my pocket. I was a true geek :) Most of the time I used to create games for my friends: board games, card games, strategy games, casino games and so on. They were pretty popular!

The first 5 years I only coded on the Casio calculators. Then I got a PC and I also started to write code with Visual Basic and C/C++. However, I didn't have a laptop so I continued to write code on the calculator for other 4 years so that my friends could play on the train.

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Becoming an Outlier: Reprogramming the Developer Mind

I finished to watch an awesome course on Pluralsight from Cory House
This course is not intended for everyone but only for the people who really love their work and want to become the best they can be.

Cory created a website to lunch a movement of developers who don't want to be average!

The manifesto contains three simple statements:
  • I’m not interested in being average. I’m out to be exceptional. 
  • I’m not waiting to be picked. I’m actively creating opportunities. 
  • I’m commanding my time so I can own my trajectory and maximize my impact.
I really like the quotation he used to describe himself.
"If it’s work, we try to do less. If it’s art, we try to do more." - Seth Godin
Software is my art. 
He really inspired me. Are you?