Wednesday, January 25, 2012

"Did You Read It?" for late January, 2012

This blog post mentions some of the most interesting articles that I have read recently, with a little bit of my commentary on each article. 

I read this article on pricing in the virtualization market. Everyone I speak to about virtualization scoffs at Hyper-V when comparing it to VMWare. But, here's the thing: SQL Server took a healthy chunk of the RDMS space away from Oracle and DB/2 even though those products were arguably "better". Can Microsoft win a portion of the virtualization market with Hyper-V even though VMWare may have a better product? IT decisions seem to always boil down to price and familiarity, in some combination. Hyper-V is easy to get onto a Windows server and people have been grumbling about VMWare pricing lately.

I read this very well written article on Microsoft Word versus Evernote (and versus a bunch of other things) by a person who spends a lot of time writing. I'm not a guru-level genius with Word, but I first used Word 5.5 on a Macintosh back in the mid-1980s. I used to chuck all kinds of things into Word, basically anything I couldn't do in a plain text editor like CodeWright or vi. Ever since the ribbon, I've drifted away from using Word unless I have to. I would only use Word for a large project. For smaller things, a few pages here and there and for "Daily Journal" type stuff, I gravitate towards OneNote and Evernote. I do these blog postings mainly in EverNote, and sometimes directly in Blogger. I'm not concerned with complicated formatting or styles, so there is no worth to using Word.

I read this article on managing truth when it comes to non-IT people and the superstitious. Co-incidentally, I actually wrote "Don't yout trust us?" last week, in an email conversation about DBAs and obfuscation.

I read this TechNet article on different ways to create custom objects in PowerShell. Flexibility often breeds complexity and complexity breeds holy wars on the "best way" to do things. Most stuff (I'm looking at you, Mr. "Coding Standards") just falls to the personal preferences of the first person who worked on a particular project. I've never liked the Add-Member method, it seems bulky to me and I am not known for being terse. Going forward, I think that the hashtable tactics are cleanest. 

I have been using code like this for years, possibly since before PowerShell 1.0 was released and it is a hard habit to break:

$result = "" | Select-Object "File", "Computer"
$result.File = "foo.txt"
$result.Computer = "hal9000" 

That is very VBScript-like, I think, and betrays my scripting roots. I normally don't build a lot of custom objects and I'm not motivated enough to go back through my existing body of code and rework it, so I don't have a lot of opportunity to redress my problem.

This article, along with comments made at the PSSUG meetings in Malvern, PA, makes me feel like XEvents are the future. Hm. More and more stuff I know is obsolete. Good thing I've got a new workstation to build VMs with, now I just need to find the time to do that.

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