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Three types of people

In the spirit of using completely arbitrary ways to categorise people, I’d like to suggest that there’s 3 types of people.

At the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier you are one of these:

The person who walks out the instant the credits start rolling
The person who waits for the ‘bonus’ bit that all comic related movies have these days. Once that bit in the middle of the credits has played, you congratulate yourself for waiting and then walk out
The person who is overly cautious and waits right until the very end, and then as the credits finish and the final roman numeral copyright year rolls off the top of the screen you are rewarded […]

What Would I Know?

You know when you read lazy tech reporting and it just wastes your time? Yeah, I hate that. People who don’t really know much, but are more than happy to share their ill-informed opinions. Or worse, they’re a walking case study for ignorance parading as opinion… yeah, we all hate that.

So, why do I feel the need to contribute more of the same?

Well, basically, I find that writing down my thoughts helps me clarify them. The final result might well still be flawed, but it’s a lot better than where I started. And perhaps, if I’m extremely lucky, there might be some snippet of an idea that could stimulate you, dear reader.

As always, comments […]

CLARITY: Visual Studio Tools for Office (VSTO)

After chatting with a few people about Visual Studio Tools for Office (VSTO) recently, it’s clear that the technology is not that well understood (even though, in my opinion, Microsoft have done a pretty good job of articulating it – much better than say OBA for example). So in this post I’m aiming to give a high level overview of VSTO and clear up some misconceptions. As usual this is covered under my ‘well duh’ disclaimer, and I apologise in advance for ‘reworking’ some of my content from earlier in the year, including this one from January and my general VSTO page. For a comparison of VSTO to VSTA […]

CLARITY: Office Business Applications (OBA)

Office Business Applications is a term getting bandied about a fair bit these days. What is it exactly? Well, answers differ, and you’d be forgiven if you thought it was as simple as using Office to build Applications for use in Business. The purpose of this post is to try to get some simple high level understanding of OBAs. In later posts I’ll be digging into resources and also covering VSTO. (As per usual this is covered under my ‘well duh’ disclaimer.) OBA – Concept The concept behind OBA is perhaps best summed up in the following quote from the OBA Central site where they state: […]

CLARITY: SQL Server 2008

One of the problems we often encounter is information overload. There’s no shortage of great articles, examples, podcasts and webcasts on every conceivable technology. Microsoft’s products are no different. Thus, the following is comprised of numerous sources easy to find online – there’s no special insight here. Rather, I’ve just simply tried to distill a product to its highest level overview. Hope it helps, and as usual it’s covered by my ‘well duh’ disclaimer. Anyway, on to today’s topic: SQL Server 2008   History of SQL Server SQL Server has been around for a while, with version 6 coming along in the early ’90s. Version 6.5 and […]

CLARITY: CRM Live becomes CRM Online

The main interest in this article from Mary Jo is not about CRM (who cares about a name change after all) but rather how Microsoft are clarifying their terms: Live: Consumer focus Online: Business & Enterprise focus, hosted by Microsoft Hosted services: hosted by Microsoft partners And don’t miss the revenue sharing snippet at the bottom – Microsoft will share 10% of the CRM Live charge with reseller partners (its at the bottom of page 10 of the linked document). (via Mary Jo Foley) Technorati Tags: CRM, Live, Online, Microsoft


Seems like Microsoft is having a V Day, every day. Here's a run down of the main V technologies/tools:

VSTS (Visual Studio Team System)

Firstly, Visual Studio. Visual Studio 2008 (the current version) is Microsoft's IDE for building .NET based applications, be they Web, Desktop, Device or Microsoft Office based.

Visual Studio comes in a number of different versions, grouped into three main areas:

Express editions (freely downloadable, limited feature set)
Visual Studio (Standard and Professional versions)
Visual Studio Team System (developer-role based versions that integrate with Team Foundation Server)

The premier version is called Visual Studio Team System 2008 Team Suite and includes everything from all the different-role based versions.

VSTO (Visual Studio Tools for Office)

VSTO is Microsoft's tool set […]

CLARITY: Thin, Thick and Smart clients

The term Smart Client is probably the most often misused of the three, and there always seems to be a little bit of confusion as to where Thick stops and Smart begins.

But, yet again, The Architecture Journal (Issue 14, p10) guides us with a simple and helpful summary. Some will no doubt disagree (since the issue is focused on connectivity and mobile devices).

I've summarised them here:

Thin Client (Online Application): Client software, normally browser based, where connectivity is required.

Thick Client (Offline Application): Client software, installed locally, where connectivity is not required. All required data is local. (Synchronising of data at some point may be provided)

Smart Client (Occasionally Connected Application): Client software, installed locally, where connectivity […]

By |January 10th, 2008|Clarity, Main|0 Comments

CLARITY: Flash versus Flex versus Silverlight

Summary: Flex is to Adobe as Silverlight is to Microsoft

Silverlight is often referred to as Microsoft's version of Flash, however it is more correct to say it is Microsoft's version of Flex.

You could say the following…
Silverlight 1.0 = Flash
Silverlight 2.0 = Flex

Here's a very basic comparison of Flex and Silverlight:

Flex is an Adobe product which allows you to build Rich Internet Applications* (RIA)

It is basically a developer tool which has a framework of functions that allows you to build applications that run in a browser (any browser on any platform).

Flex can use the Adobe Integrated Runtime (AIR)** to run those very same web apps on the […]

CLARITY: SharePoint – WSS versus MOSS

There's still plenty of confusion out there about SharePoint, particularly around what is included in WSS versus MOSS. Part of the problem is that there is soooo much information about SharePoint that the simple details get lost…

So, let's go through the various options, comparing WSS with MOSS Standard and MOSS Enterprise as simply as possible. I'll exclude technicalities (eg that you need R2 of W2K3 etc) and just focus on the main points.

Windows SharePoint Services (WSS)

Currently in version 3.0, WSS is a free add-on to Windows 2003 Server. WSS is the foundation of SharePoint. It provides a stack of features (or services), including document management & collaboration, Wikis, Blogs, RSS feeds, […]