Author Archives: Ray Houston

About Ray Houston

Ray is a software development leader and architect with 20 years hands-on experience. He enjoys finding elegant solutions to complex problems and delivering real value to customers. Ray is a speaker and contributor to community events.

Senior Developer Opportunity in Austin

TOPAZ Technologies is currently looking for a Senior Developer who loves to write .NET code. We’re a product company that builds software solutions for the medical research industry. Here are some of the details for the position: If you are … Continue reading 

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Single-Responsibility Versus Needless Complexity

At Pablo’s Day of TDD, we were discussing the Single-Responsibility Principle (SRP) while working through one of the labs and a question came up about a piece of code. The code in question looked something like the following (warning: this … Continue reading 

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Learning TDD

Learning TDD takes time and can be especially tough if you don’t have an opportunity to work with folks that are already doing TDD. It requires you to think and work differently and there are many pitfalls along the way. … Continue reading 

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How Mr. Buford got me started in software development

Jason tagged me awhile back for a “How did I get started in software development?” post and I’m just now getting around to it, but I’m going to change the format a little. One morning back in 1982/83 when I … Continue reading 

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Creating a Silverlight Layout Panel

On our current project, we came across the need to build some custom layout panels in Silverlight to achieve some complex fluid layouts that we could not get from the built in controls. I was amazed to see how easy … Continue reading 

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From Flex to Silverlight

A couple of years ago my company started development on a web product that had designs for a very rich user interface. We started out building a AJAX HTML based application and realized very soon that we were having to … Continue reading 

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Do Anonymous Methods Prevent Declaring Types from Being GC’d?

It seems that they do if they reference members of the declaring type. This makes perfect sense now that I think about it, but I didn’t think about it earlier and wrote some code that caused a memory leak. I … Continue reading 

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Synchronizing UI Operations with Asynchronous Dependencies

When working with asynchronous data access such as using a Silverlight client to access data from a server side service, you will inevitably run into the situation where you have two or more calls which have results that need to … Continue reading 

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Connecting ActiveRecord to SQL Server

Disclaimer: I’m a Ruby noobie. I know nada about Rails. Please leave a comment if something is not correct or if there is a better way to do this. At work, we’re using Watir to drive a Silverlight application for … Continue reading 

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Funding Open Source with Donations

Read this post! I’m challenging you to make a difference. I was part of the Funding Open Source Projects discussion at the ALT.NET conference. Oren has a good summary which can be found here. He mentions that donations sound good, … Continue reading 

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