Shawn Wildermuth

Author, Teacher, and Filmmaker
.NET Foundation Board Member

The Blog

My Rants and Raves about technology, programming, everything else...


England Swing of the WilderWorldTour

Next week I start a short swing around southern and south-midlands England. I had hoped to do more events in England, but this short swing of four user groups is all I’m doing in England (though I’ll be in close-by Scotland in early August and Ireland in September).

These events will cover a variety of topics including Node.js, ASP.NET Web API v2 and AngularJS.

These are the events starting next Thursday.

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Meet Up With Me in London This Thursday

Quick reminder that I’m going to be holding a quick, informal Nerd Dinner in London, UK this Thursday (July 17th, 2014) at 6:30pm (or 18:30 if you prefer) local time!

If you’re a geek of any type, a viewer of my Pluralsight courses or even just a fan of my books, this is a great opportunity to share a pint and conversation.

The nerd dinner will be held at:

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The Other Half of Your Job

listening_wideI do enjoy building things with code. When I started 28 years ago, that’s what I thought was the essence of what a “computer person’s” (e.g. software developer) job was to sit dark in a room and grind out computer code. Of course we know that it just isn’t true.

For me technical acumen is a decent mark of a good developer. But if you can marry technical ability with communication skills, you’re a huge asset to any company.

No matter what kind of development you do, you have to interact with what I’ll call stakeholders. Stakeholders can be direct users, managers, companies or anyone who will benefit from your software. This interaction is where the magic happens in software projects. If you can’t communicate with the stakeholders, the project is doomed to failure.

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It Is Time to Learn JavaScript

javascriptJavaScript is having a great year. With the continuation of web development, Node.js, and even Apple adding JavaScript as a replacement for their AppleScript.

You may be waiting until you have to learn JavaScript, but maybe you should learn JavaScript to make you a better developer. Let me pitch it to you:

I started with database ‘languages’ twenty-eight years ago. My experience in those days was that when you got a new package or solution, you were going to learn a new language. A language was part of the experience, not a separate piece of the puzzle. If you look back at how Paradox, dBase and others worked. The language was simply ‘in the box’.

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Learning How to Balance Work and Life

WP_20140610_16_31_44_ev2_Pro__highresI love what I do. The consulting, the software development, the courses…I really love it all. It keeps me in a constant state of learning and I am overjoyed and extremely lucky for this to be my life’s passion.

This year a lot has changed in my life and I am finally married for the first time. I met the amazing woman 2 1/2 years ago and I am lucky she agreed to be my life. Sappy…I know, but the experience has been transformative.

In mid-May with my wedding fast approaching I started to pull away from work to focus on the incredibly difficult (and a tad stupid) task of planning a wedding, eliminating everything we owned (with small exceptions) and leaving the country for a year. All these three things happened in the span of five days. We left our apartment on a Friday, got married on Saturday, and on Tuesday we were on a plane to Paris to start our adventure.

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John Robbins Debugs the Hello World Podcast

John Robbins has saved me in uncountable ways over the years due to is great work on books and tool for debugging. That’s why I was so excited when he agreed to be on the show.

John and I have crossed paths but never had much of a chance to chat about how we each got started. We get to hear a great story that starts with the Green Berets and shows how special forces can make you a great developer.

The Hello World Podcast is where I get to talk with some of your favorite authors, developers and speakers about how they got started in software development.

You can listen to episode 27 here:

http://wildermuth.com/hwpod/27_John_Robbins 

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On This Week's Podcast: Jon Flanders Files a Brief

Jon Flanders and I go back to our DevelopMentor days and now we’re both authors at Pluralsight. It was great catching up and see how he got started.

After all the time I’ve known him, I would have never guessed he used to be a lawyer before he dove into software development. I found it particularly interesting on how his experience as a lawyer informed his work as a software developer.

The Hello World Podcast is where I get to talk with some of your favorite authors, developers and speakers about how they got started in software development.

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Humanitarian Toolbox

imageI’m happy to announce that I will be working with the Humanitarian Toolbox to both help publicize this important project as well as work on some of the projects. This is an important open source project that is trying to do some real good for the world out there.

If you’re anything like me, you like to make a difference. The Humanitarian Toolbox is a place to make a difference. They are helping people during disaster response by using technology.

Their mission statement is really simple:

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Time Zones and Servers

Wonder-121-Time-Zone-Static-ImageI am getting married and that means I get a bunch of development tasks to do for the wedding planning. I guess it’s my own fault, I did propose with an app.

One of the tasks I had to do was create a new page on my wedding site for the day of the wedding to include things like directions and parking. Pretty simple HTML stuff, but one thing I wanted to be sure of was to only show the page on the day of the wedding. This should be easy, but the time zone of the server has kicked my ass before.

The problem is that if I check for the date, the date might get shifted if the time is after midnight where the server is. Luckily the TimeZoneInfo class makes this pretty easy in C#. The trick is to first get the time zone you care about:

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My Switch to Azure Websites

UntitledI am a developer first. I’ve become my family’s IT department but not by choice. This is the fate of most developers I know.

For the past year or so I’ve been experimenting with Azure Websites as a solution for quick, one-off sites and even for class examples. I’m a big fan. Let me tell you why.

Azure is a diverse landscape with lots of services. It be a little daunting. I’ve some of these services, but certainly not all. Azure Websites is particularly interesting to me in that fulfills my desire to not be an IT guy. Why?

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