Zaki Mirza’s Blog

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… About software and beyond!

Late night Bloggin’: Refactoring myself

Just been going through re-organizing my blog. Reading articles by Jakob Neilsen (Useability Guru) has pretty much changed my thoughts about blogging, how to percieve it and how to go on about doing it. He is right in his articles (here, especially) that the web really needs proper, well formed, well thought and specialised content rather than 2 second rants about something you found annoying or loved like Scoble’s over obsession with everything iPhone and everything about blogging. So i was here, seeing my categories list and I see just too many categories with single entries. I have narrowed down the categories to the following major ones:

Blog Log: My category for stuff I write about others’s blogs. Like this one.
General: For general talks. Like this one, again.
Code and Programming: Code talk and snippets.
Design: Problem (and software) design articles/comments.
Late Night Blog: Quick rants about something i found really useful.
Troubleshooter: For articles related to troubleshooting problems others found and approached me for, and my own fixes.

Apart from these major ones, there are short categories for Linux, MS Windows, MS Visual Studio, OpenGL, C++, and .Net.

So comming back to the topic “refactoring myself”. If you havn’t been studying refactoring then i highly recommend that you do. It will add up to your skillset of software engineering. I really can’t go deep into the topic right now (and how useful a skill it is) here in this post, nor do I have many cool links to hookup here for refactoring but I know you know your way to google. (Just for information, one of my favourite shortkut keys in Visual Studio 2005 C# workspace is the F2. It renames all the instances of the variable/function/etc currently my cursor is at). There are a lot of features in VS2k5 to explore for refactoring for beginners. One of the great articles i read today is the article at One more pointless blog called Refactor yourself. Eddie approaches the refactoring phenomenon from a totally different angle but does it very beautifully. A must read for anyone, not just software specialists.

As for the weekend, its really not very intresting. I’m really intrested in taking care of my new house so been searching some proper toolkits to have here, here and here. After an hour long searching in google I found some nice links.

Reading my news feeds is getting to be like life to me. I’v just been reading Ali Eteraz recent articles. One i found fairly intresting and thought provoking is the Geneology of prostrating (Muslim silence since 9/11).  Apart from all the MI and ISI covert battle shit being related to the Lal Masjid issue by my uncles and their wives, Ali Eteraz has his own views on its end here. I find a lot of consonance with his school of thought. Keep it up Ali.

Recent entries on my reader include A list apart, some Adobe blogs, and The News feed(which i dont read at all, i just added it because of the lal masjid issue. Did I say on my blog that I literally hate reading newspaper news, especially here. They never fail to disappoint me… its all just about deaths and shit).

A GREAT news I recently heard is that Rico Mariani (Someone i really lookup to meeting in this life) has finally taken charge as the Chief Architect of Visual Studio. I hope he’s not too late to take charge for Orcas and hope to see some great innovation comming up next Feb’ when microsoft releases Visual Studio 2008, Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008 etc. Way to go Rico, i wish you the best! I’m so happy, i wonder why. hehe!

So much for the latenight blog, im hoping to write a few articles this summer on my blog. Lets when I get the click.

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Filed under: Blog Log, general, Late Night Blog, , , ,

Top Posts

Ive always been a great fan of the “label” posts. They are fun, and true.

Scott Hanselman’s “New programming stereoypes for web 2.0”

“Traffic school for software projects”

Politically the hottest topic around is the lal-masjid so here goes Ali eteraz take on it.

“Whats happened with lal masjid in pakistan” He just doesnt disappoint me. He makes me laugh, think and wonder! Do go through his articles. They are a master peice.

Ill keep this updated, untill then i hope i dont become a resonator blog :S

Filed under: Blog Log

Writer’s Bloc or what?

Iv been away from my blog lately. Havnt had time really, nor could i find the urge to write much. Just been busy with work at Bentley since i joined in as an intern. Been also disappointed to find a grade not worth mentioning, but whats worth mentioning is the achievment of completing three proper projects in less than 2 months. This time i joined up with Mehshan for Disrtributed Computing, Graphics and Algorithms course Projects. Had to create a Remote Agent Toolkit for Distributed Computing, A custom RayTracer engine for Graphics (InterLight 3d Presentation) and implementation of Langville’s algorithm for computing Google’s Page rank. I guess we make a good team and it would last longer. Glad to be out of the “hard to say ‘No’ to the free-riders” syndrome.

Anyways, I spend a lot of time reading a lot of blogs. Today I’ll list my most loved ones. So here goes:

Coding Horror : Jeff Atwoods almost daily feast of issues, solutions and general rants about software issues.

Joel On software : The Fog Creek Guy. He’s bold, he’s experienced and his company pays $750/week to interns 😦 I hope Bentley goes through that as well.

Maoni’s Weblog: Maoni’s been away for quite some time but his articles on performance issues and debugging are priceless.

One more pointless blog

Scott Hanselman’s Computer zen

The Old New Thing

Rico Mariani’s Performance Tidbits

10x  Software Development : What can i say about the writer of “Code Complete” 🙂

Scobliezer: An avid blogger … blogs everything :p Though im not really a big fan of his way of writing, but yes hes a good source of info.

And a “Big” Subscription to the MSDN Blogs which includes updates to all the blogs on msdn. (subscribe to the OPML)

On a lighter note, I go through a lot of other feeds like DZone and Eteraz.org (read ali eteraz if you really want to see some rehtoric gymnastics).

There are more, but these are my top issues first thing in the morning. I get them delivered straight to me through Google Reader which is an easy and innovative way to go through the internet i like. It even has a “offline” mode (after downloading a little plugin)  so i can even go through these posts without internet. (Yes, dont you remember dialup still?). An even bigger picture to my day is through iGoogle which is basically a customized google homepage (with my mail, rss reader, wikipedia and ofcourse google). Google reader comes with some cool packs to subscribe to when you start using it. I cant really go through all of them so ive jsut scubscibed to the Google’s internal blogs set where i get all the info on google. The best thing about blogs is that you just dont read em like newspaper or a certain brand of newspaper. You get to “click” on links and go from one place to another (did u click that “click” ? :p). It gets addictive sometimes. And it can make you a useless people of informative lump! Who just reads and knows everything but doesnt really do anything. I keep getting that syndrome every often so these days im trying to get into a routine. (that includes eating peanut butter sandwiches and horlics for breakfast:s) …

Filed under: Blog Log, general

Channel9, on10 and ResearchChannel

Microsoft has been putting forward a lot of information that is very useful for developers and ametuer programmers. three of the top sites i have discovered yet are channel9, on10 and researchchannel (on MSR).

There are very cool video interviews on channel9, my favourite being “behind the code” and “going deep” series. Having seen tony williams (co inventor of COM), anders heljsberg (inventor of C#) and jim gray, it boosts the enthusiasm in this field. also, the Deep Windows series by Probert is also great on channel9 and is a must watch. The recent TechFest coverage has been successful at impressing me as well. Is hard to keep up with channel9 and/or sites like that when you have limited bandwidth 😦

 Im still to explore research channel yet.

Filed under: Blog Log

Great articles at thecodist

found a really cool article by thecodist here. Its a nice thought provoking blog on different aspects of programming.

Filed under: Blog Log

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