Thursday, July 14, 2005

Bunch of Good Links

First, maybe the best blog post I've every read from Mike Spille. I've been guilty of the "guardrail to guardrail" effect a time or two. On a project last year we probably did some dumb stuff because of someone else's negative experience with a certain technology on his previous project.

Read the comments too --> "BTW, you left out the obligatory insult to VB."

In a similar vein, James Bach warns us against being absolutist about "Best Practices." One of my favorite quotes is "A maturity model is basically a gang of best practices hooked on crystal meth." Just to add my 2 cents worth, I think it's best to always keep an eye on the first causes. I've written before that a centralized architecture group handing down black and white mandatory best practices from Mount Olympus to the pitiful wretches in the trenches is a terrible organization anti-pattern. There is always some kind of exception to every rule and the guys doing the actual work should be capable of exercising their own judgment.

Lastly, integration guru Gregor Hohpe asks what the real difference is between coding and configuration. Here you go Gregor, the difference is that I can write unit tests for code and use a debugger to troubleshoot code. I don't know why people keep inviting Gregor to these kinds of conferences because he just mocks the proceedings in his blog later.

My StructureMap tool is very configuration intensive and I have an unnatural tolerance for external XML configuration. To compensate, I've tried to provide the usage of .Net attributes for some configuration to be closer to the code. I've also had to invest a lot of energy into creating better tools for troubleshooting and validating configuration files in StructureMap. Since I dogfood StructureMap, expect more and better troubleshooting tools (because my colleague gets irritated otherwise).


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