Friday, July 30, 2010

I leave it as an exercise to the reader...

When did this become a euphemism for "this is hard"?

I say this because I'm doing research on Visual Studio 2010 and one of the selling points is the Parallel Extensions for .NET. In a great many of the articles and tutorials I've found, the author goes through some totally brain dead examples that have no relevance to real life to show the basics. This is then followed by a discussion of some of the more interesting parts of the framework and then a paragraph or two about things you might try and finally something like "I leave it as an exercise for the reader to...." followed by something that might actually be interesting.

This is one of the reasons, by the way, that I prefer actual books to cobbling together a manual from various web pages. I know a lot of people say they will never by another programming book again because you can find everything you need on the web. I have not found this to be the case. And even when it is the case in a lot of instances one has to go through a lot of effort to cull the good nuggets from the pile of information you find. It's almost like panning for gold. Most good books do this for you already and the really good ones even include some decent examples of using libraries and techniques that have some relevance to real life.

I just needed to vent. Back to my research.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Working with outlook

I found a nice piece of software called Outlook Redemption. I had to process some msg files that I had exported and this thing came in handy and was super simple to use. For what I needed, this was enough to get going.

From time to time I'm still amazed at the software that is freely available to just get things done and move on with your life.