2nd Monitor Issues

posted on 09/26/07 at 07:23:09 pm by Joel Ross

I'm a huge fan of using a second monitor, and up until recently, I have been doing that regularly. That was until recently, when I started to think it might be causing performance issues for me.

None of this is hard and fast evidence. It's all anecdotal, so take it for what it's worth. I have a Dell Latitude D820. It's got an NVidia Quadro 110M video card, with 128 MB of dedicated memory and 271 MB of shared memory. My laptop has 3.3 GB of RAM, so I have plenty of memory. Anyway, when I attach a second monitor, things slow down. I listen to a lot of MP3's through Windows Media Player, and when I have a second monitor connected, MFPMP.exe will take 30-40% of my CPU, but only 10-12% when I don't have it connected. I'd read it could be related to audio drivers, but the second monitor shouldn't affect audio. Just to note, this also happens when I use VLC Player as well.

I have a feeling it's the video drivers, but I can't be sure. According to NVidia's site, they have newer drivers for the Quadro cards, but Dell hasn't updated theirs yet, and trying to install NVidia's fails because it doesn't recognize my card - I have to get the drivers through Dell.

By the way, I never had this issue on XP, and I don't really remember having this issue up until a few months ago - been running Vista and doing the same thing since last fall.

Hopefully, there'll be an update soon. I'm a much more efficient developer with a second monitor. I wonder if there are any good external video cards out there...

Categories: Software


07-08 Week 3 NFL Picks

posted on 09/20/07 at 10:08:31 pm by Joel Ross

I made my picks on Tuesday night, but I'm just now finding time to finish it off. It's been a busy week! Anyway, these are probably just as bad as my first 2 weeks, but hey, who knows, right? Obviously I don't!

  • Detroit vs. Philadelphia (-7) (44 O/U)
  • Arizona vs. Baltimore (-9) (35.5 O/U)
  • Indianapolis (-6) vs. Houston (47.5 O/U)
  • San Diego (-4.5) vs. Green Bay (43 O/U)
  • Buffalo* vs. New England (-16.5) (42 O/U): This line's since moved to -17 for New England. That's absolutely nuts! It's hardly even worth betting on. If New England does cover, you'd make $.06 per $1.00 you bet. On the other hand, if you dropped $10 on Buffalo, and they somehow won, you'd be sitting pretty with $115.00 in winnings. It's almost worth it just because of the payoff!
  • St. Louis vs. Tampa Bay (-4) (38 O/U)
  • Miami vs. New York Jets (-2.5) (35 O/U)
  • San Francisco vs. Pittsburgh (-9) (38 O/U)
  • Minnesota vs. Kansas City (-3) (33 O/U)
  • Cleveland vs. Oakland (-3.5) (40 O/U)
  • Jacksonville vs. Denver (-3.5) (35.5 O/U)
  • Cincinnati vs. Seattle (-3) (50.5 O/U)
  • Carolina (-3.5) vs. Atlanta (36.5 O/U)
  • New York Giants vs. Washington (-4) (40.5 O/U)
  • Dallas vs. Chicago (-3.5) (41.5 O/U)
  • Tennessee vs. New Orleans (-4.5) (45 O/U)

My "lock solid" picks this week? Baltimore (-400), Pittsburgh (-470), San Diego (-245) and Seattle (-200). A little more risky, but if I ever want to be able to get some solid winnings, I'll have to take a few chances.

Categories: Football


Presenting The NuSoft Framework!

posted on 09/19/07 at 09:21:18 pm by Joel Ross

NuSoft Solutions, my place of employment, has decided to release the NuSoft Framework, a business object framework we use on a lot of our custom development projects, as an open source project on CodePlex.

I'm very excited about this. I was part of the group that originally came up with what we wanted the NuSoft Framework to be, and I did the presentations internally at NuSoft to roll it out company-wide. I'm excited to get it out there and see how it's received. Having said that, I know it's not perfect and is still in it's infancy. We have a whole list of things we want to add!

Putting this out there should provide me with lots of things to talk about, so expect a flood of info about the framework to be coming soon - background on why we did things, how the framework works, how it can be extended - all kinds of stuff.

But first, what is the NuSoft Framework? It's a set of CodeSmith templates that you point to a database, and we generate a whole set of business objects and framework component files to get you off the ground quickly.  It also generates a Visual Studio 2005 solution file for you. It's up to you to add a UI to it - we intentionally did not add any UI specific code to the framework. It requires CodeSmith and SQL Server 2005, so there are some base requirements for it, but what it gives you is quite a bit to get a team moving quickly. The code created can be used by either windows or web applications - and we have built both types of applications, so I'm speaking from experience here.

Anyway, that's a decent introduction. Go grab it, give it a look, and please let me know what you think!

Categories: Development, Software, C#, RCM Technologies


Exception Best Practices - Say No To ApplicationException?

posted on 09/19/07 at 09:18:08 pm by Joel Ross

I listen to DotNetRocks regularly, and I was surprised on a recent episode when Carl did his "Better Know A Framework" segment about the ApplicationException class. He stated it was no longer a good practice to use it as a base for all of your custom exceptions - something that I hadn't heard.

So I did a quick search, and lo and behold, Carl was right. Here's a post from Tobias Gurock stating the same thing from back in 2005, referencing a post from Brad Abrams back in 2004.

I guess I'm a bit out of date.

Categories: Development, C#


It's International Talk Like A Pirate Day!

posted on 09/19/07 at 10:42:16 am by Joel Ross

Categories: General


NuSoft Solutions Is Blogging

posted on 09/18/07 at 09:10:55 pm by Joel Ross

NuSoft Solutions, my place of employment, has just launched a public blog. I have one over there, and will probably cross-post things that I think are relevant to what I do during the day - so no NFL picks over there.

NuSoft has internal blogs, and I read those regularly. Hopefully the people who blog internally will switch over and start putting some of that out there for everyone else to read. It's usually very good stuff and always technical in nature.

Mark Jordan and Chris Woodruff where key in getting this set up, and I'm excited to see it finally happen. We used to have public blogs at Sagestone (NuSoft acquired Sagestone a few years back), and I enjoyed being able to share my experiences with fellow 'stoners and the world, and I'm looking forward to being able to do the same at NuSoft - but to me, it's more important for NuSoft because we have different offices, and we don't always get a chance to see each other face to face.

Anyway, thanks Mark and Chris!

Categories: Blogging


Using SVNBridge With CodePlex

posted on 09/18/07 at 09:03:51 pm by Joel Ross

I'm working on a project on CodePlex (more details to follow soon), and wanted an easy way to interact with CodePlex's source control. It's Team Foundation Server underneath, so I could have used Team Explorer, but the project I'm working on isn't technically a Visual Studio project - I deal with the file system more than I'm in Visual Studio. CodePlex also has their own tool, but I use Subversion for my personal source control, so having seen Scott Hanselman's post about how to get SVNBridge working with CodePlex, I decided to go that route. It crashed on me a few times until I realized what I was doing wrong, but after rectifying that, it works very nicely. I can make modifications and then submit them just like I do with Subversion.

Very nice! Thanks, Scott.

Categories: Software


07-08 Week 2 NFL Pick Results

posted on 09/18/07 at 08:55:11 pm by Joel Ross

Have you heard that there's parity in the NFL? Yeah, me neither. Or at least that's how it appears when you look at my picks! I thought last week was bad - this week makes last week look good!

It is a strange situation in the NFL right now. New Orleans is 0-2. They went to the NFC Championship last year. Philadelphia is 0-2. They were a playoff team last year - and there's three other 0-2 teams that made the playoffs last year. Houston is 2-0. They're the worst team in the NFL, right? The Lions are 2-0. Did someone forget that Matt Millen is running that team?

At least I have my 4 "lock solid" picks: Jacksonville, Pittsburgh, Carolina and Denver. I was 3-1 again, but because of the lines, I lost $4.33, meaning overall, I'd be down $.09 for the year, but 6-2 with my picks. See how lines can really hurt you? Anyway, here are my results.

  • Atlanta 7, Jacksonville 13 (-10) (34 O/U) [P: $1.67, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($18.33)]:
  • Buffalo 3, Pittsburgh 26 (-9.5) (37.5 O/U) [P: $2.00, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $2.00]:
  • New Orleans 14 (-3), Tampa Bay 31 (42 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]:
  • Green Bay 35, New York Giants 13 (0) (37.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.09, T: ($10.91)]:
  • Houston 34, Carolina 21 (-6.5) (38 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]:
  • San Francisco 17, St. Louis 16 (-3) (44.5 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.09, T: ($10.91)]:
  • Indianapolis 22 (-7), Tennessee 20 (46.5 O/U) [P: $3.13, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($16.88)]:
  • Cincinnati 45 (-7), Cleveland 51 (42 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($30.00)]:
  • Seattle 20 (-3), Arizona 23 (44 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.09, T: ($10.91)]:
  • Dallas 37 (-3.5), Miami 20 (40 O/U) [P: $5.00, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.09, T: $24.09]:
  • Minnesota 17, Detroit 20 (-3) (42 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: $0.00, O/U: $9.09, T: ($0.91)]:
  • Oakland 20, Denver 23 (-9.5) (39 O/U) [P: $2.00, S: ($10.00), O/U: ($10.00), T: ($18.00)]:
  • Kansas City* 10, Chicago 20 (-11.5) (34.5 O/U) [P: $1.25, S: $10.00, O/U: $9.09, T: $20.34]:
  • New York Jets* 13, Baltimore 20 (-10) (33 O/U) [P: $1.90, S: $10.00, O/U: $0.00, T: $11.90]:
  • San Diego 14, New England 38 (-3.5) (47 O/U) [P: $5.00, S: $10.00, O/U: ($10.00), T: $5.00]:
  • Washington 20, Philadelphia 12 (-7) (40 O/U) [P: ($10.00), S: ($10.00), O/U: $9.09, T: ($10.91)]:

Results Summary

  • Picks (this week): 8 - 8 (50.00%) - Winnings: ($58.05)
  • Picks (season): 17 - 15 (53.13%) - Winnings: ($85.66)
  • Spread (this week): 5 - 10 (33.33%) - Winnings: ($50.00)
  • Spread (season): 12 - 17 (41.38%) - Winnings: ($50.00)
  • Over/Under (this week): 7 - 8 (46.67%) - Winnings: ($16.36)
  • Over/Under (season): 14 - 17 (45.16%) - Winnings: ($42.73)
  • Total Weekly Winnings: ($124.42)
  • Total Overall Winnings: ($178.39)

My guess is I won't recover from this all season. Last year after two weeks, I was up $15.11 and ended positive for the year. Two years ago, I was down $211, and never recovered. My guess is this year will be the same as two years ago.

Categories: Football


NFL Betting: Moving Lines

posted on 09/14/07 at 10:28:45 pm by Joel Ross

I've never actually tracked how much lines for NFL games move throughout the week. I usually pick a point in time, usually Tuesday or Wednesday, and make my picks. The only time I look at other times is when a game is "off the board" - the sports books haven't set a line yet, usually because they're waiting to see if an injured player is going to play (for example, Eli Manning this week). Because the absence of key players - running backs, quarterbacks - can have a huge impact on an outcome, the books aren't willing to put a number out there.

Anyway, this week, I've had a page of the lines open in my browser. Since the Packers / Giants game was originally even, I noticed that it now had an actual spread - the Giants are now a 1.5 point favorite at a couple of the books. Going back and looking, the line for Cincy vs. Cleveland moved by a 1/2 point as well. What's interesting about that game is that it's anywhere from -6.5 to -8.5 at the other betting sites listed.

This brings up a whole other aspect to betting - when and where to place your bets. The above illustrates both of those. If think the Packers are going to win, you'd be much better off waiting to place your bet. You'd get another 1.5 points by waiting.

That's a bit hard to predict. You'd have to wait a bit to see how the line might move, and if you like the way it's moving, then you make a move. However, if it moves opposite of what you want, then you're out of luck. The other example is an easier to manage situation. If you're betting on the Bengals, then you'd go with the book offering -6.5. If you're a fan of the Browns, I'm sorry. But you'd bet with the book offering you 8.5 points.

This just once again reinforces why I don't actually place any bets!

Categories: Football


DotNetRocks #272 - Scott Cate on the MVP Pattern

posted on 09/14/07 at 10:27:40 pm by Joel Ross

I'm finally feeling like I'm starting to get caught up on podcasts after going about three weeks without listening to any. I haven't caught up on certain shows, but DotNetRocks is one of those that I prioritized to get caught up on. As of today, I'm all caught up.

Anyway, I wanted to highly recommend listening to episode #272 with Scott Cate. While I kind of felt the first 1/2 hour of the show was a commercial for Scott's company, the next half hour was a very good discussion of Model-View-Presenter, contract-based development and the design patterns needed to implement the first two.

I recently worked with a client using the Web Client Software Factory, which uses a MVP/MVC and I was intrigued by it - it's a different way to think about developing software. I'm still a little confused about MVP vs. MVC, mainly because I haven't had the time to really look into it, but I did build a sample application that had both a web and windows UI using MV[P/C] - the business layer had all of the logic in it, and both the UI's have basically no logic in them, and it works well. Scott says that it's not more code to do it - it's just a matter of where the code goes. I think he's right to an extent. I think setting it up is more work, but once you have the framework in place, it's not much more code. It just feels like more because there's more right clicking and adding files.

I also enjoyed the discussion towards the end about why you'd even do this if you don't need to have multiple UI's. This is when the discussion kind of changed to talking about my favorite design pattern: Inversion Of Control. The gist of the discussion? Once you've been burned by hard-coding dependencies, you quickly realize the benefit of IoC.

As an aside, I've always wanted to ask someone in an interview to explain Inversion of Control, Dependency Injection, and why you would choose one over the other. I probably never would ask that, but in case you're wondering, Martin Fowler has the answer.

Categories: Development, Podcasting, C#


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