Friday Links #65

Programming Computers

Adventures in MVVM – Generalized Command Behavior Attachments - There are several examples on the web that describe the “Attached Behavior” pattern in Silverlight and WPF. This pattern works really well for binding commands in the ViewModel to controls in the View. The problem with this is that for every behavior, there is a LOT of boilerplate code that goes along with it. Because the DepencencyProperties need to be static, they cannot be easily abstracted into a common class.

Test Driving a WPF application using MVVM and TDD - Advantages of the MVP-like architectures, such as being able to test my UI without actually running the UI, but without the overhead of wiring all that junk up.

Defining Terms » Blog Archive » C#, The Ternary Operator, and Mono - It’s a bit amusing that an open source project supports the spec better than Microsoft itself, but there are probably also cases where it goes the other way.

Rick Byers : AnyCPU Exes are usually more trouble than they’re worth - I think we’ve converged on a consensus that most of the time they’re not what you want and so shouldn’t be the default in Visual Studio. I suspect this topic may interest (and even shock) some folks, so I thought I’d share the rationale with you here.

TestDriven.Net 2.23 Beta – Faster! - TestDriven.NET by Jamie Cansdale - If you’re using TestDriven.Net 2.23 on a 64-bit OS, you should find that running tests is almost twice as fast!

NCover - NCover Blog - Code Coverage for .NET Developers - Great new features to NCover and a ton of improvements and bug fixes that make NCover Explorer simpler to use and easier to configure.

Using your Personal Computer

Get Behind the Shield! Hotspot Shield by AnchorFree – If you surf on free Wi-Fi at coffee shops and hotels, this tool can protect your activities by creating a VPN to their site and then out to the Internet.

Immunet releases free cloud-powered antivirus for Windows - They’re not the first company to push out a cloud-based Windows antivirus product, but Immunet is hoping to make a splash with their newly-released beta ofImmunet Protect.

How to Block Ads in Google Chrome - Proxy – Lifehacker - In short, you use the free Privoxy web proxy software, which blocks web sites serving ads, and configure Google Chrome to use the proxy. Here’s how to do it.

Science and the Environment

[Newly Discovered Carnivorous Jungle Plant Gobbles Rats Whole Popular Science](http://www.popsci.com/environment/article/2009-08/newly-discovered-plant-species-eats-rats-named-after-famous-naturalist) - Scientists recently discovered this new species of pitcher plant on the verdant face of Mount Victoria in the Philippines. (Warning, gross picture of Rat being consumed)
[IBM Scientists Harness DNA Self-Assembly to Build Faster, Cheaper Chips Popular Science](http://www.popsci.com/scitech/article/2009-08/ibm-scientists-harness-dna-self-assembly-build-faster-cheaper-chips) - The next generation of semiconductor technology could take a page from nature’s book, letting DNA do the heavy lifting. Straight-laced researchers at IBM, afraid of breaking Moore’s Law, have figured out a way to combine lithographic patterning and DNA self-assembly to create semiconductors that built themselves into chips that are smaller, more efficient and less expensive than anything made conventionally.

Water Quality Improves After Lawn Fertilizer Ban, Study Shows - Do the ordinances really help reduce phosphorus pollution?

DNA Evidence Can Be Fabricated, Scientists Show - NYTimes.com - Scientists in Israel have demonstrated that it is possible to fabricate DNA evidence, undermining the credibility of what has been considered the gold standard of proof in criminal cases.

Tiny Flares Responsible for Outsized Heat of Sun’s Atmosphere - The mystery of why temperatures in the solar corona, the sun’s outer atmosphere, soar to several million degrees Kelvin (K) —much hotter than temperatures nearer the sun’s surface—has puzzled scientists for decades.

On the Web

Repower America - Just launched the Repower America Hotline. It’s a number you can call anytime to leave a message for your Senators, and we’ll make sure it gets to their offices. Just call 1-877-9-REPOWER. Enter your zip code when prompted so we know which Senators should receive your message.

Feel The Need The Need For Speed With Google Earth’s Flight Simulator - Google Earth has a pretty nifty feature called the “Flight Simulator.” The flight simulator basically allows for users to take control of a plane as they navigate around locations, mountains, oceans, and landmarks of their choosing.


Gmail Nudges Past AOL Email In The U.S. To Take No. 3 Spot - In July, Gmail nudged past AOL Email with 37 million unique visitors compared to 36.4 million for AOL.

Stuff I just Dig

John Scalzi’s Guide to the Most Epic FAILs in Star Wars Design - Star Wars has a badly-designed universe; so poorly-designed, in fact, that one can say that a significant goal of all those Star Wars novels is to rationalize and mitigate the bad design choices of the movies. Need examples? Here’s ten.

[Hubble’s Deepest Look Into Space, Now Rendered In 3D Popular Science](http://www.popsci.com/military-aviation-amp-space/article/2009-08/hubble-ultra-deep-field-rendered-3d) - Over a period of four months in late 2003, the Hubble telescope assembled an image that represents the deepest look into space every composed. Here’s what it looks like in 3D.

Pick of the Week

Input Director – Control more than one computer with a single mouse and keyboard. If you have multiple systems in your cube like I do, this is a real time saver.

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