Programming Rants

Staying on hold: why background music is better than chatter
21 Feb 2014
US Mail lost my package. Trying to call them, I am waiting on hold for 25 minutes and counting. But that’s not the most annoying part. The most annoying part is that they use constant chatter about their excellent services instead of background music. A male and a female announcer alternate talking about how priority […]

Changing order of enum values in C# breaks binary compatibility badly
27 Jan 2014
Suppose I have a public interface that uses this enum: public enum LogLevel // v1 { Info, Warning, Error, Debug } There is a problem with this enum: the values are not in the order of increasing severity. Let’s say we want to fix this like so: public enum LogLevel // v2 { Debug, Info, […]

Boost log
02 Jan 2014
I was doing some googling around the Boost log library, and here’s what came up: U.S. House backs bill to boost logging in national forests. www.peninsuladailynews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID…‎ Sep 22, 2013 – Greg Walden, R-Ore., said many rural counties in Oregon and other states … rural West, Matson said, adding that an increase in logging jobs … […]

Molecular communication for closed environments
20 Dec 2013
Many of us heard about transmitting Internet traffic via avian carriers. While avian carriers have definite advantages, they cannot be used in small scale confined environments. Researches from Canada came up with a new, revolutionary communication channel based on stimulated molecular diffusion. In other words, they were able to send a text message using a […]

How to disable secure boot: a play in 14 acts with two intermissions
04 Dec 2013
I have just got a new laptop: it comes with Windows 8, but it does not have a touch screen. So, naturally, I am throwing out Windows 8 and replacing it with Windows 7. Unfortunately, Windows 8 won’t give up easily: you need to disable Secure Boot first. Fortunately, I already did it for a […]

Why I would not recommend SSRS
06 Sep 2013
I’ve been putting this off for a while, and it’s been a couple of months since I had actively worked with SSRS reports on a daily basis. Here are my main points of frustration with the product. This was and older version of SQL Server (2008R2, if I remember correctly), but I don’t believe the […]

Invalid type code in stream ‘Invalid’
06 Sep 2013
If you marshal WPF windows between processes, or do any other cross-process remoting, you can get this error on an unpatched .NET Framework 4: Invalid type code in stream 'Invalid' This is not your fault: it is Microsof’ts bug. The fix is here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/982638

All your database are belong to us
15 Aug 2013
Just tried to import some data from Excel into SQL Server. Got the following error message: You have selected to skip 4 potential lost column conversion(s). You are only allowed to save the package (column names were blurred to protect the innocent) This message, ladies and gentlemen, is a work of art. First, it lies. […]

Quote of the day
29 Jul 2013
“I can’t imagine naming a column “WasDeleted” under any circumstances. If it’s set to false, it’s redundant; if it’s set to true, it’s a lie. :)” http://ayende.com/blog/4157/avoid-soft-deletes, comment by Phil

Apache AcceptEx Weirdness
29 Jul 2013
The fun started Saturday morning, when I found a brown box by my door with a new cable modem in it. The paper inside the box said something like “install me and enjoy”. This sounded like a classic beginning of a horror or spy movie: gullible user stupidly installs the gadget, and now evil monsters/foreign […]