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Archive for April, 2006

Comment by Mark on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

Comment by Mark on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

You should check out Adobe Flex at labs.adobe.com, because it enables building rich compelling applicaitons today that run on the Flash player, which is the most widely distributed runtime out there.

Posted by: Mark

April 30, 2006Comments are DisabledRead More
Comment by Derek Hatchard on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

Comment by Derek Hatchard on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

Given that every component vendor under the sun has Ajax-ified their offerings and there are a number of Ajax frameworks on the market and in the community, Atlas is lumbering behind. We wanted a decent Ajax framework last year when Microsoft was just starting on it so lots of people rolled their own. I have some more thoughts on this that I posted to a mailing list in January that I’ve been hesitant to post here. Maybe I will after I get a chance to dig into the current CTP. Ultimately I think Microsoft should have released a simple Ajax framework last year for 1.1/2.0 and continued to go after the full Atlas functionality for Orcas (which they are doing anyway).As for WPF, the difference is that WinForms in the browser needed the Framework on the client so the requirement was more than just IE. WPF/E is different because it requires a new browser for everyone. It will take a while for WPF/E-enabled browsers to reach critical mass but when it happens, the UI layer on the web gets a lot more interesting.

Posted by: Derek Hatchard

April 29, 2006Comments are DisabledRead More
Comment by David Taylor on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

Comment by David Taylor on “WPF Might Actually Induce a Paradigm Shift”

"Atlas taking so long" – what are you talking about?The team only started Atlas mid last year, and presented it at the PDC 2005. Even now they have been working on it for less that 10 months and have made *amazing* progress and you say it is taking "so long" – No……I disagree.Also be careful with the WPF predictions…..I was making the same predictions about Windows Forms back in the year 2000, because it could run both in a browser and on a desktop – and due to the same penetration of IE.

Posted by: David Taylor

Comments are DisabledRead More
Another Bad Error Message

Another Bad Error Message

Well, I’m a roll with bad error messages this month. This week we finally received a merchant number and API token from Moneris to accept Mastercard and Visa for Church Radius. So I plugged the numbers into our configuration file and went to process a live credit card transaction. It failed with an error message saying “API Token Mismatch”. What might this error message make you think is wrong? That you had an invalid API token? Good guess… But, nope. We got that error message because the sales team at Moneris had screwed up and not enabled recurring billing (subscriptions) to our merchant account. Even the tech guy at Moneris was confused. We figured it out by guessing at things that could be wrong.

The good news is that Church Radius is now completely and officially LIVE! Wahoo.

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April 28, 20061 commentRead More
Comment by Andre Perusse on “Bad Error Message == Bad Usability”

Comment by Andre Perusse on “Bad Error Message == Bad Usability”

Hi Derek.This is a great post. Unhelpful error messages are a persistent thorn in my personal productivity, both as a user and as a developer.This reminds me of a past project where I used a Web Form to allow the user to change their Active Directory password. The code I used was something like this:Dim oldPassword As String = Request.Form("txtOldPassword")Dim newPassword As String = Request.Form("txtNewPassword")’ Get the user’s AD accountDim deUser As New DirectoryEntry()Dim dsUser As New DirectorySearcher(deUser, "SAMAccountName=" & CurrentUser("lanID"))Dim adUser As SearchResult = dsUser.FindOne()Try ‘ Attempt to change the password. Restrictions will be applied by AD ‘ (password length, history, etc) as defined by the domain password policy. Dim deUserEntry As DirectoryEntry = dsUser.GetDirectoryEntry() deUserEntry.Invoke("ChangePassword", New Object() {oldPassword, newPassword}) deUserEntry.CommitChanges() ‘ Redirect to confirmation page. Response.Redirect("passwordSuccessfullyChanged.aspx")Catch ex As Exception ‘ Display the error to the user lblError.InnerText = ex.InnerException.MessageEnd TryAs it applies specfically to your post, if a password change attempt failed, I was unable to determine which item in the password policy had been violated. I would just get a generic Active Directory message about "failed to meet policy conditions" or something (I don’t remember the exact message). Naturally, the AD policy in place at the time also had the "can only change password once per day" restriction and this caused me no end of grief with users who, just as you described, recently had their passwords reset by the help desk and were now trying to change it themselves. I never was able to find a solution to this problem.Very frustrating.Cheers,Andre

Posted by: Andre Perusse

April 26, 2006Comments are DisabledRead More