Review: Grid-It's Cocoon

Gadgets are awesome. But if you are like me and have too many, you quickly run into gadget hell. My backpack is filled with tangled wires, dongles, ear pieces, and chargers. Finding the exact device I need can be challenging. Then a few weeks ago I saw Grid-It’s Cocoon on Lifehacker and quickly purchased one. I just finished filling it out and really like i so far. It is a quick and easy way to organize all your gadgets and cables. »

Productivity Apps

It’s been a while since I have updated my Tools list, or more appropriately for 2011, my Apps list. Since the initial writing of that list, one thing has changed pretty drammatically, I switched from BlackBerry to an iPhone. With that, how I get work done and the tools I use have changed. This post focuses on my top productivity apps. Evernote All day long, I find myself creating little notes. »

Brian Hartsock on #Tools,

Unified Branch Diff in Tortoise SVN

In my ancient pre-windows days, I used to do a complete branch diff before reintegrating into trunk to make sure everything looked good. Well, you can still do it in TortoiseSVN in three easy steps: Open Repo Browser Navigate to the first branch, right click, and select Mark for comparison Navigate to the second branch, right click, and select Show differences as unified diff Little tidbit I didn’t know existed in Tortoise until today. »

Brian Hartsock on #svn,

Events for Software Developers in Blacksburg

It is sometimes hard to find out what events/activities are occurring for software developers in Blacksburg. This is a super small, non-complete list of things to do. Virginia Tech CS Distinguised lectures NCTC Software Developers Forum (also check out NCTC events) RVNUG (Roanoke Valley .NET Users Group) For VT students, there are a few more. VTLUUG ACM Association for Women in Computing CS^2 VT Gaming Project VT Free Culture Let me know if there are other groups I can add to my list. »

NUnit projects and config files

NUnit project files (*.nunit) are an easy way to specify test assemblies you want tested during the build or continuous integration. Unfortunately, if you use app.configs in your test assemblies, you will quickly realize that NUnit isn’t loading them. For a test project, a single AppDomain is used (by default). Today, I figured out how to change the default behavior quite by accident. In NUnit GUI, go to Tools -> Settings then Assembly Isolation. »

Brian Hartsock on #NUnit,

How to create the perfect home office - Part 3 - The wires and wires and wires

Wires are quite possibly the most annoying and unattractive part of any home office. Picking the right hardware and software will help, but at the end of the day you are going to have some wires that need a home. In this post I will go over a few of the ways I have hid equipment and wires in my home office. Getting Started The first step is getting the right equipment for the job. »

How to create the perfect home office - Part 2 - The equipment and software

After you get your furniture right, the next step is setting up all your equipment. For me, my desk revolves around three computers. My desktop which is really just there in case I get the urge to game. My Mac for pretty much everything non-work related. And my work laptop. The Hardware There are only two things that matter to me with hardware. Number of wires and awesomeness. I am not going to go into too much depth regarding my hardware decisions, just a couple of pointers that helped make my home office sweet. »

How to create the perfect home office - Part 1 - The desk and furniture

The furniture in an office is the second most important aspect of the office next to the computer. Your furniture defines the look and function of your office. If simplicity is your goal, you need furniture that has clean lines and plenty of unobtrusive storage. If multi-tasking is your goal, you need a desk with lots of surface area and room. Don’t take your desk decision lightly. My last desk lasted 10 years. »

Setting up your Mac for .NET development

Last night I spent a few hours getting my Windows virtualization setup so I could use Visual Studio from the Mac. It ended up being way cooler and easier than I thought. All it requires is two simple things, Parallels and mklink. Parallels I was hesitant about paying $79 for virtualization software when other software like VirtualBox is completely free. My advice, try the free trial of Parallels and you will understand why it is worth the price. »