SYSK 230: Do You Need BizTalk To Load a CSV File?

Consider the following scenario: you get a comma separated values (CSV) file from your business partner via a file upload feature available on your B2B web site.   For this file to be processed, you need to convert it to a relational format (e.g. data table).  So, what do you do?      You could copy…

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SYSK 229: AJAX.NET Update Panel or Web Service?

AJAX.NET has two methods for incrementally updating user interface of a web page – UpdatePanel and .asmx/.svc programming model.  So, which should you choose when?   If you need to have access to the view state of your server side controls, including the page itself, then use UpdatePanel.  It’s very simple to use – just…

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SYSK 228: Get Table Columns or Rows with Single Key Press

Imagine this:  you type in a table name in SQL Server Management Studio, press Ctrl+9 and get all rows from that table displayed in the results pane.  Or you press Ctrl+8 and instead of data rows, you get metadata about columns of that table.    No more typing of ‘SELECT * FROM MyTable’ over and…

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SYSK 227: Monthly Calendar control in ASP.NET

Did you ever need a calendar control that allows you to color-code certain days based on your business logic and display details on mouse-over event?  Here is an example of what I’m talking about: So, perhaps the yellow color means “standard” appointments, and red indicates very important events…  You decide based on your business rules…

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SYSK 226: Exception Handling in JavaScript

Have you seen a coding guidelines document that did not call for some sort of exception handling, be it in the form of __try/__except, On Error GoTo, try/catch, or any other way?  Most developers would agree that it’s important to catch exceptions and, if not handle them, at least log the error details for later…

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SYSK 225: Portals, Dashboards, Scorecards…

In case of portals, the story is reasonably clear.  I think most would agree that the goal of portals is to provide users with integrated access to relevant business information.  The key words here are: access, integrated and relevant.  So, it’s a “one stop shopping” for information gathered from structured (databases, etc.) and unstructured (e-mails,…

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SYSK 224: Why Join Is Better Than Sleep

All the “best practices” I’ve seen recommend avoid calling System.Thread.CurrentThread.Sleep() method.  Agreed; but there are some legitimate situations when you just have to block for a certain period of time…  If that is the case, consider using System.Thread.CurrentThread.Join() instead – just like Sleep, it will blocks the calling thread until a thread terminates or the…

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SYSK 223: The Power of Double-Not Operator

If you need to convert a non-boolean data type to a boolean, and you’re dealing with a typeless language (e.g. javascript), you’ve got a couple of choices:  write an if-then-else logic or use the not-not (a.k.a. double-not) operator.  The results are same, so you decide on what style you prefer:   [object] => true false…

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SYSK 222: CPU Impact of Animated GIFs

Animation, whether via an animated gif (a sequence of frames) or custom drawing, does not come for free.  As a rule of thumb, the more colors and the more frames your animated gif has, the larger the memory footprint and the higher the CPU utilization.   With custom painting, the more complex the drawing, the higher…

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SYSK 221: Combat Spyware — Check Your Browser Settings

From within Internet Explorer, click on Tools and then on Internet Options. Now click on the Advanced tab, and under the Browser section make sure Enable Install On Demand (Internet Explorer) and enable Install On Demand (other) are not checked.  This would help prevent malicious spyware programs from automatically installing themselves without your knowledge.

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