The Terrible Support for MSDN Migrations

Update – 2/20/17   I’m preserving the below post for context, but here’s the problem so far: My subscription was never properly migrated to the new portal, or (even more hilarious) they never knew I had one at all. I had confirmed this before setting up an alias.  Was further confirmed by the fact that: They didn’t even know I had a subscription and I had to provide proof of purchase They had me try to activate with my retail serial number They reset the expiration window of my subscription to January 31st 2018 (admission of fault) They told me you cannot have any aliases (also wrong) showing up in the portal other than the e-mail associated with the subscription. I removed my one alias via the Microsoft portal.  Also made sure that the original e-mail associated with MSDN was my primary account. Made sure all primary/contact e-mail addresses…

MSDN not a valid key

Making Decisions on a Small Team

Almost daily teams make decisions based on a variety of different inputs and personalities.  A particular difficulty is when you as a developer/manager are in need of a consensus decision from two different parties who often disagree.  The disagreement can be based upon differing incentives, or even personality conflicts- this method has worked well for me in either case. Discovery – Getting the inputs from each party Go and talk to each party individually- on the phone or in-person is best.  The conversational aspect is important as people will often allow you to see more of what they need via verbal communication- rather than writing something down that is set in stone.  I find it’s best to listen at this point- if a solution is proposed at this point keep your ears open to see if it is viable.  However, if you are asked to make a decision before getting input…


My first Pluralsight attempt

My job has ebbs and flows so during one of those ebbs I decided to check out some extra work via Pluralsight authorship. It’s been more than a year since I first contacted them and I still have yet to submit my final audition video. I’ve had a few 200+ hour months in the last year so I forgive myself for not making quicker progress. However, between the time of my first submission and review, a whole bunch of content was added to Pluralsight which conflicted with my topic. In addition, there were some audio difficulties I had. Even the Pluralsight author’s site has changed (for the better). Some of the original advice (setup a dedicated VM just for Pluralsight) has been replaced with more straightforward requirements. However, for those looking to see the content I originally submitted. Here it is! I did not choose this for my final submission….


Surviving a legacy code project

Oftentimes when I do consulting I am called in to fix someone else’s mess.  Some refer to legacy code meaning code that’s  deprecated, or code in an “old” technology stack.  Some refer to legacy code as code that lacks unit tests.  Most likely you’re going to get both… at once… and at first you’ll feel like this…   However, after the grieving process you can do one of two things. Quit your job/contract/project. March forward in maniacal madness. Now I’m being facetious when I compare work on a legacy software project to personal grief, but it’s undeniable that it can affect your perceived your value.  My personality drives me to make applications work- to become better.  Yet we are sometimes put in situations where we don’t have the tools, budget, or environment to make something better.  Here is how I describe the process. While I can’t offer you anything more than my personal…