Here’s a heads up on two events coming soon.  This is a great opportunity to learn about Silverlight and Expression Studio from three of the local Microsoft Developer Evangelists:  Danilo “Dani” Diaz, G. Andrew Duthie, and Zhiming “Z” Xue.  Check out the links for more information and to register.

Each event has two sessions:

  • Building Rich Interactive Applications with Microsoft Silverlight
  • Delivering Rich Web Experiences Using Microsoft Expression Studio

 

What: MSDN Roadshow
When: Friday, September 14, 2007 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Where: Microsoft, Pittsburgh

 

What: MSDN Roadshow
When: Thursday, October 18, 2007 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Where: Microsoft, Malvern

I’ve gotta start by saying I love Vista.  A lot of people I talk to are still scared of Vista but I have really enjoyed using it.  I’m no expert on the features but I did blog about a few that I liked right out of the gate.  Lately,  one thing that makes me crazy is the TrustedInstaller.exe.  First, you should understand that I built my own machine and I guess either my CPU fan or the box itself (or both) must suck.  Because when my CPU is cranking, the fan revs up and rattles the entire box.  It is really annoying!  And because of this, it is obvious to me every time TrustedInstaller.exe is running.  This thing typically runs at 48% of my CPU and lasts for 15 minutes or so.  I don’t know why it isn’t throttled back a bit, it doesn’t make sense to me.

Anyway, when I first figured out that TrustedInstaller was the culprit, I did some web searching and found a blog post by Scott Hanselman.  I was really glad that I wasn’t the only one suffering, especially someone that I respect like Scott (sorry Scott).  But it validated me, that I wasn’t doing something wrong myself. 

Interestingly, when I looked up his blog post today to include it here, I read something that stood out to me:

“When I see things like this, I think “If I worked for Microsoft, fixing this problem could be a HUGE opportunity.””

Posted 5/28/2007 on Scott’s Blog

Wow, that is awesome because I remembered another post on Scott’s blog from which I quote:

“I’m going to work for Microsoft. There, I said it. I’m going to work for ScottGu’s team in the Developer Division.”

Posted 7/21/2007 on Scott’s Blog

OK, I am pretty sure ScottGu’s team isn’t responsible for the TrustedInstaller.  But Scott (Hanselman), can you PLEASE walk down the hall and talk to someone!

Reading Pete’s blog I found out about the new version of Windows Live Writer.  It is still in Beta, but now even better with Beta 2.  I’m curious as to why they don’t just release this and take away the Beta already.  Anyway…

Right away I noticed some differences (I am posting this with the new version, of course).  The UI is a little slicker.  One of the coolest new features is that you can easily insert and modify tables in a post.  Previously, I had to switch over to html view and put my own tables in.  It was a nuisance.  I also like the way they display the categories now.  Also I just noticed while I am typing this that the spell checking is enhanced.  Check out this list of new features.

One feature that I think needs to be added is support for post descriptions.  My blog runs on dasBlog.  With dasBlog I can put in a description of my post and then only the description shows on the main page with a link to the body of the post.  I’d love to be able to insert the description via Live Writer.  I’ll submit my feature request to the team.

Quite a while back (maybe a year) I saw a great video on YouTube that demonstrated a new user interface that used a touch screen like never before.  They likened it to the awesome UI from the movie The Minority Report where guys drag “objects” around computer screen by hand.  Sure, the one in the movie was MUCH cooler then this, but this was a step in the right direction.

Today I worked from home which meant that I got to watch a bit of the Today Show before starting work.  Much to my surprise, they did a segment with Bill Gates where he introduced Microsoft Surface.  This is a pretty similar concept to the original product I saw a year ago.  Of course, I have no idea if they are similar beneath the hood. 

This is definitely worth checking out.  They said it would be available in retail uses this soon but not for home users to play with for 2 more years.

Lastly, I thought I would have a scoop on this since I doubt many other people who work watch the Today Show.  But I was scooped by Scott Cate.  He also mentions seeing this at the Microsoft Museum (I’ve never been there) and he also notes that it uses Flash, not Silverlight!  Now that is interesting.

A few friends have asked lately about pasting code into blog posts from visual studio.  When you do add code, you want to retain the syntax highlighting features from VS so the code is more readable.  This is a snap with Windows Live Writer.  Live Writer is still considered Beta software but it seems to work pretty well for me.

All you need to do is go to the Live Writer Gallery and check out the cool pluggins that are available.  In this case, I am using the pluggin called “Paste From Visual Studio“.

Just install that and in a snap you go from this:

 

public void dosomething(string anArgument)
{
//this method doesn’t really do anything.
string message = “hello world”
DateTime date = DateTime.Now;
}

To This:

    public void dosomething(string anArgument)
    {
        //this method doesn’t really do anything.
        string message = “hello world”;
        DateTime date = DateTime.Now;
    }

It couldn’t be easier!  Now I just need to add some posts to this blog that really use some pasted code!  Check out this other post I wrote about some other cool features of Live Writer.