My Life As A Blog

Archive for the ‘Software’ Category

TechDays 2010

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Yesterday I was at TechDays 2010, where I presented a session on what’s new in VB 10 and C# 4.0.   Before diving into the new features, I talked about the trends in language design and evolution – for those who are interested, I’d take a look at this session where Anders Hejlsberg goes into far more detail.  Next I picked out a few personal highlights of what’s new in .NET 4.0 – including Code Contracts, Tuples and In-Process Side-By-Side Execution and talked briefly about co-evolution.  The new VB features I talked about were Auto-implemented Properties, Implicit Line Continuation, Collection Initializers and Statement Lambdas.  The new C# features I discussed were Optional and Named Parameters and Dynamically Typed Objects – of course no discussion of Dynamically Typed Objects would be complete without mentioning the Dynamic Language Runtime and I also talked about ExpandoObject and DynamicObject and how both C# and VB can use this new dynamic capability.  The last two features are new to both C# and VB: Improved COM Interoperability and Co- and Contra-Variance.

And for those of you who couldn’t make the event (and, thinking about it, for those who could, too), I’d suggest taking a look at the Underbelly backstage videos of day one and day two.

Written by remark

April 14, 2010 at 5:39 pm

National Rail Enquiries Video

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Hot on the heels of the release of the National Rail Enquiries Outlook Add-In – which has made it from the Proof of concept to full blown release – we thought we’d make a video about the outcome of the Proof of Concept.  And here it is:


For a look behind the scenes (well, a couple of photos anyway) check out David’s blog.

Written by remark

July 6, 2009 at 3:31 pm

How to embed IronPython

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I’ve just posted an article about embedding IronPython into your apps as a scripting language. Read it here.

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June 10, 2009 at 7:27 pm

Use .NET classes in IronPython

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It’s really simple to use a .NET class in IronPython.  The first thing to remember is that you’ll need to add a reference (just like you would in .NET).  To do that you use the AddReference method of the clr module.  In the case of an assembly you’ve written, IronPython needs to be able to find it, which means it needs to be in sys.path.  It turns out that you can add the path to your assembly by using the append method of sys.path.  Here’s a simple example.  First, let’s create a simple class called User in C# in a solution called SampleClasses:

namespace SampleClasses


    public class User


        public string Name{ get; set;}

        public DateTime DateOfBirth { get; set; }



For the sake of simplicity, let’s copy the dll to a folder called lib on the C drive.  OK.  Time to fire up IronPython (which I’m going to assume you’ve already installed.)  Open a command prompt and type “ipy”.  You should see something like the following:


Next, let’s ensure the SampleClasses assembly is available to IronPython:

>>>import sys

Once we’ve done that we can add a reference:

>>>import clr

Now, we need to import the User name from the SampleClasses namespace:

>>>from SampleClasses import User

We’re all set.  Create an instance of user and set one of the properties:


That’s all there is to it.  Now you can go and experiment with IronPython and classes you’ve already written in .NET.

Written by remark

June 4, 2009 at 2:49 pm

Posted in .NET, c#, Python, Software

MSDN eBook available

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Eric has posted the lowdown on the MSDN eBook that’s just been made available.  It includes a short article I wrote about the DLR along with another 12 bite size articles that cover everything (well, nearly everything) from IronPython to developing games with XNA.

Written by remark

April 21, 2009 at 6:04 pm

Adding mobility to an ASP. NET MVC site

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I’ve posted a short article about how I added mobile support to the iWantGreatCare Proof of Concept.

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April 16, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Ruby Tuesday #27 : IronRuby, Silverlight, Bacon and Eggs

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I watched John Lam’s talk at Mix 09 the other day – it’s worth watching.  During the talk John shows how to test Silverlight applications in a BDD style using IronRuby, and a gem called Bacon.  Part of the setup includes a small library to run Bacon in Silverlight.  It’s called, as you may have guessed by now, Eggs.  If you want to try Bacon and Eggs for yourself, Jimmy Schementi has posted a how-to here.  Happy frying!

Written by remark

March 31, 2009 at 8:57 pm

Posted in .NET, Ruby, silverlight, Software