Throttle Your ASP.NET Connection Speed

As a tool to test responsiveness on slow connections Firefox Throttle is handy Firefox add-in. There is also an IE version. You can add a localhost throttle if you are using Visual Studios local web server. For example, setting the download speed to 56K dialup, you can check any Silverlight media buffering UI animations are working as expected.

Determine site’s absolute, fully-qualified url in

 I'm working on a Silverlight media player like you get on MySpace and other sites. The app is meant to be as simple as possible, so i've created a Silverlight-enabled WCF service which returns a list of the MP3s available in the songs directory on the server. To allow the SL app to be as loosely coupled to the location of the physical mp3s, the wcf service needs to return a list of fully qualified URIs to each mp3 in the directory. When the user selects a song to listen to we can simply set the MediaElement.Source to the URI.

 The following post contains some great code (that can even be used outside of a WebForm) to convert  "~/myfolder/mysubfolder" to".


Microsoft Certified Master Program

The 3 week master program costs US$18,500 (I'm assuming not inclusive of accommodation!) and runs in Redmond, Washington.

You have to be accepted onto the program by supplying a CV and potentially a 30-60 min interview (after paying $125 non-refundable fee). 

Upgrade exams for MCPD to Visual Studio 2008

No dates as yet for upgrade exams, but if you're an existing MCPD (Windows, Web or Enterprise) you'll be able to take a single upgrade exam (except for Enterprise where 2 exams are required. 

SilverKeys is Live

The first version of my Silverlight scale\chord finder is complete, it can be found at

I'd like to improve the UX around the scale degrees, perhaps a circle of scale degrees...(I also have some TODO:s to do around refactoring)

I'll be posting source eventually in addition to an explanation of some of the more interesting elements..

SilverKeys Part 3

The UI (or should I say UX now?) is 90% complete (for this iteration that is) as the image below shows. There are a few bug fixes left to complete, plus I'd like to to some moderate re-factoring of both the 'business' logic and the XAML.

I'll post some of the more interesting aspects of the project in later posts and either make the source available from here or I might look at uploading to Codeplex et al so  others can go ahead and take it forward if it's found to be interesting. There also be a 'live' version available. I'll be using it personally to try out different keys & progressions for future compositions.


System.Windows.Markup.XamlParseException when using Tag property in Silverlight

Although MSDN says you can use the FrameworkElement.Tag Property to store an arbitary object, if you try to store anything other than a string you get a System.Windows.Markup.XamlParseException. It seems I'm not the only one to notice this.