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What’s wrong with the noun/adjective/verb object oriented design strategy

The programming course I took way back in 1993 was basically a 1 year intro to C. And like any good student, as I learned the language, I also started learning about code reuse and experienced a delightful satisfaction every time I realized 2 different functions had similar code which could be moved into a new function. Eventually, I noticed a pattern, in that I would write a bit of functionality until it worked, then I would refactor it into a more elegant solution with as little repeated code as possible. My code evolved quite nicely. Then I learned C++, object oriented programming, and was introduced to the holy grail of object oriented design advice, which went something like this: Take your requirements and circle all the nouns, those are your classes. Then underline all the adjectives, those are your properties. Then highlight all your verbs, those are your methods This Noun / Adjective / Verb design strategy seemed like the most ingenious piece of programming wisdom ever spoken … but it’s led us down a misguided path. It’s the verb that’s misunderstood. The verb should be another class, not a method. It should be a process class. As a programming concept, a process...
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Let’s turn off all features to improve UX

Here’s a thought; what if all features on a new software upgrade were turned off by default? What if when you bought a software upgrade, all the new features were disabled and the software worked exactly as if it did before you installed it? What if new software had all but the most structurally necessary features disabled? Yes, I’m serious. But why? For a maximum user experience of course … WTF? … how can you have a maximum user experience with everything turned off? Because the biggest issue with user experience is surprises. Well duh! But now we’re talking bugs, and everybody knows bugs suck. Yeah, bugs suck, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about features that work to spec, but unfortunately the user doesn’t even know exist! Notice that I’m not talking about features that users don’t know how to use. I’m talking specifically about features, often intrusive features, which the user doesn’t know about. Like what? … oh, I don’t know … like having my keyboard cycling between US, Canadian French, and Canadian Multilingual, in an apparently random pattern last week. This happened because the default hot keys on the Language Bar software were set to the same keys...
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New Job

New job I’m starting at a new job this morning.  I’ve been looking since April. Well sort of; it took me a long time to accept the fact that full time might be the best choice for me at this point in my life. But once I accepted that, I went straight to Infusion Development and got in their interview process.  I’ve known about Infusion since about 2006 via their ads on DotNetRocks. As I understood, they’ve been growing super fast, have reputation for having bright developers, & a bleeding edge development strategy.  For example, Infusion is a leading developer of Microsoft Surface apps … If you’re reading this, I’m sure you know about Surface already, but if you don’t, go to Google Video and do a search on it.  It’s an awesome product. I won’t be working on the Surface though. I really want to work in ASP.NET MVC / jQuery, and that’s what I’ll be doing.  I’ve wanted to work at Infusion for a long time, but didn’t act on it since I had a pretty good thing going as an independent consultant. But when my contract ended in April, a bit of soul searching led me to the conclusion that I...
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Visual Studio Bug – ‘if’ followed by a try / catch causes debugger stepping error

Yesterday I was debugging and stepped into a method. I wanted to get past my parameter validation checks and into the meat of the method, so I quickly, F10’d my way down the method, but I noticed a line of code was stepped on which should not have been touched. The code was a simple parameter validation like: 1 2 if (enumerableObj == null) throw new ArgumentNullException("enumerableObj"); with several similar parameter validation lines above it and a try/catch block containing the meat of the method below it. The odd thing was, I thought I saw the debugger step on the throw statement even though the enumerableObj should have had a value. I assumed I had somehow passed in a null value to the enumerableObj parameter and had nearly missed the problem in my haste. I had been moving quickly, so quickly in fact that I had stepped about 3 more lines into the method before I even stopped. To be honest at this point, I wasn’t even sure if I saw it step into the ‘if’ block, so I repositioned my debug cursor back to the ‘if’ condition, and stepped again. Sure enough, it stepped into the ‘if’ block. I assumed I passed in...
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An Abstract Data Model

This is post 3 from a 7 part series entitled Technical Achievements in my Last Project. Overview Normally, when I build a new system, I design the new data model based on the requirements, and build my business objects and data access, based primarily on a that data model*. The remainder of the application is built on the components beneath it, so when you change something at the bottom, like the data model, changes ripple throughout the application. The data model serves as the foundation of my application. Now as far as this project goes, one of the important requirements was to deliver the new system incrementally, while leaving the older system to run in parallel until completely replaced. Parallel Data Models This presented a bit of a dilemma for me since the current database was … well … lacking, and I was planning to refactor it enough to make it a very unstable foundation for the old system. I wanted to refactor it for a number of reasons including; missing primary keys, no foreign keys, no constraints, data fields which were required but not there, data fields which were there but not used, data fields containing 2 or more pieces of information, and...
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