Idempotent Photographical Categorization

It’s been many years since I switched from film to digital by selling my old Pentax SLR, extensive selection of quality lenses, and bag full of assorted attachments at some ludicrously low price. Since then my photographic arsenal has included several Olympus digicams. Yet I still haven’t got the knack of successfully categorizing our ever-growing…

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I Can See Patterns In The Cloud

Well, we finally did it. After many months of redesign, reconsideration, rewrites, and recombination we’ve let loose on the web our first release of the Cloud Design Patterns guide. The guide is a combination of design patterns that are especially applicable to cloud-hosted applications and services. It explores the patterns in detail, provides good practice…

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Patternal Conflict

No, this post isn’t about parental difficulties and I didn’t spell “paternal” wrong in the title, although I admit it is about problems with relationships. More specifically, the relationship between design patterns and pretty much everything else. And, based on previous experience of dabbling in this area, how I hate design patterns. For more years…

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Soft Drink Cans and a Man Named Norman

So I finally got round to reading Bill Bryson’s book “A Short History of Nearly Everything”. OK, so it’s not quite as entertaining as some of his travel guides, but it is amazingly full of things that make you go “Wow” and “Can you believe it?” I especially liked the bits about soft drink cans…

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What Color Is Your Field?

So, at last, we’re done. After fighting with multiple new versions of the Windows Azure SDK, updated features in the management portal, changes to the functionality of services, and the regular changes to the names of various parts of Windows Azure, we’ve shipped the third editions of two of our Windows Azure guides and the…

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Hybrigation Complete, Feedback Required...

So at last we’ve finished the Windows Azure hybrid applications guide, and it’s out there ready for anyone interested in integrating cloud-hosted applications with on-premises services and partner applications. OK, so it’s taken a little longer than originally planned but it is more comprehensive than originally envisaged, and incorporates a great deal of input from…

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Hands Up If You're Doing Hybrid...

After several months of diligent dappling with documentation, comprehensive confrontations with code, and seriously systematic study of system architectures, we’ve managed to toss together most of the content for our upcoming guide to Windows Azure hybrigation techniques. “Integrating with the Cloud on the Windows Azure Platform” covers all kinds of aspects of hybrid application design…

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Hybrid Triangulation (with Cat Food and Bananas)

Once again I’m at one of those gloriously satisfying stages in my p&p working life when I’m trying to define the structure for a new guide. We know what technologies we want to cover, how we will present the guidance, and the kind of sample that we’ll provide to demonstrate the all-encompassing wonderfulness of the…

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Get Your Hands On Our Labs

I suppose I could start with a bad pun by saying that you’ve had your hols, and now it’s time for some HOLs instead! Of course, this assumes you understand that “hols” is English shorthand for “holidays” and that “HOLs” is IT guidance shorthand for “Hands-On-Labs” (I wonder if people in the US have a shorthand word for “vacations”,…

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Making a Use Case for Scenarios

Technical writers, like wot I am, tend to be relatively docile and unflappable creatures. It comes with the territory (and, often, with age). Especially when most of your life is spent trying to document something that the dev team are still building, and particularly so if that dev team is resolutely following the agile path….

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