About .NET Rocks!
How do we put large language models to work? Carl and Richard talk to Vishwas Lele about his work using LLMs with his customers. Vishwas talks about focusing on specific data sets for building LLMs and how size matters - things are simple when the source data is small, but as it grows, you need more complex tools to be able to allow the LLM to perform. Lots of cautionary tales and ideas on how to get great results from these new automation tools!
How do we make our software greener? While at NDC in Porto, Carl and Richard talked to Lea Mladineo about her work in sustainable development. Lea talks about the impact of digital technology on the environment and how, with some thought and effort, we can make a real difference to that impact. The conversation explores how cloud computing can worsen the problem - or better! Software efficiency can reduce the number of cycles needed to complete a task, which is good for the environment and could save your organization money!
How can React Server Components make your website better? While at NDC in Porto, Carl and Richard talked to Aurora Walberg about her work with RSC and Next.js 13. Aurora discusses mixing server and client rendering - and server rendering within client rendering! While it's still early days, if you're looking for options in the React development space, RSC is worth a look!
How do you commercialize open-source products? While at NDC Porto, Carl and Richard talked to Victoria Melnikova about her work with Evil Martians, helping startups make open-source products and make a living at the same time. Victoria talks about various revenue strategies, but always with a mind to providing a "forever free" tier to be responsible to the open source community. Charging for pro-features, limiting the number of uses before a paid tier... there are several approaches to revenue that users can work with, as long as you are open and honest about how things work!
Are you ready for .NET Conf? Carl and Richard talk to Jeff Fritz about the latest version of .NET coming out - and the online event that celebrates it! Jeff talks about his top ten favorite sessions in the show, the ones you definitely don't want to miss. And if you have folks that are new to .NET, you want to check out the pre-event day that can help folks get started! See you online Nov 13-15!
What is observability engineering, and why do you need some? While at NDC in Porto, Carl and Richard recorded a .NET Rocks Live with Charity Majors, one of the founders of Honeycomb. Charity talked about her experiences trying to understand how complex applications worked and failed at scale over her years of experience at Facebook and other companies. Ultimately, those experiences led to a book and the creation of Honeycomb. Lots of fun insight from someone who has fought the good fight - and some great questions from the audience!
What's the latest with bUnit? Carl and Richard chat with Egil Hansen about his excellent testing library for Blazor. Egil digs into the ongoing improvements being made in Blazor and how bUnit can support those changes without having to rewrite tests - even .NET 8 shouldn't be a huge problem! The conversation also digs into the different sorts of open-source projects out there, including tooling like bUnit. Not all open source is created the same! Great thinking from an experienced builder of testing tools to make it easier to build reliable Blazor applications.
What is data sharding, and why do you need it? Carl and Richard talk to Oren Eini about his latest work on RavenDB, including the new data sharding feature. Oren talks about the power of sharding a database across multiple servers to improve performance on massive data sets. While a sharded database is typically in a single data center, it is possible to distribute the shards across multiple locations. The conversation explores the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches, including that you might not need it today, but it's great to know it's there when you do!
How do you make Kubernetes easier to use? While at the Copenhagen Developers Festival, Carl and Richard talked to Annie Talvasto about her work with Kubernetes and the Cloud Native Compute Foundation. Annie talks about the easy and hard ways to work with Kubernetes and why you might choose either approach - it comes down to how much control you want. The CNCF supports many tools for Kubernetes in various stages of development to make your life easier to orchestrate containers at scale - when you need them, you'll really need them!
Azure and GitHub - better together? While at the Copenhagen Developer Festival, Carl and Richard talked to April Edwards for a special .NET Rocks Live. April talked about how Azure and GitHub work well together, discussing Azure DevOps and GitHub Actions on the CI/CD pipeline side and how other services can interact. Lots of laughter and great questions from the live audience!
Data Science and UX should be the best of friends! While at the Copenhagen Developer Festival, Carl and Richard talked to Grishma Jena about her work in data science at IBM - and working closely with the UX teams to understand how customers use software and the opportunities to improve it. Grishma talks about the quantitative side of analytics regarding application telemetry, including the ability to predict when a customer is about to abandon an application. The conversation also digs into using modern machine learning to analyze quantitative data, such as comments in surveys - could you sort that kind of data by sentiment or actionability? Improve your UX with data!
What can you do with a Particle Photon? While in an aluminum Airstream trailer in a thunderstorm at the Copenhagen Developers Festival, Carl and Richard talked to Colleen Lavin about her work with the Particle Photon IoT device - and its many maker possibilities! Colleen talks about making it easy to start building a device - but the struggle with so many choices to actually pick a project. The conversation also digs into making production versions of your device so that they are smaller, cheaper, and very reliable - it's a fun time to be a maker!
How about some in-process messaging with no dependencies? Carl and Richard chat with Jimmy Bogard about his work with MediatR, a simple mediator pattern implementation in .NET. Jimmy talks about how MediatR emerged from his work with customer applications having controllers and/or managers that slowly got bigger and more complicated... and how they became difficult to maintain. Using the mediator pattern to break down those blocks of code into more manageable chunks needed a bit of tooling that was cut and pasted from project-to-project until MediatR was born!
How can a large language model help your application? Carl and Richard talk to Brian MacKay about his work with large language models, including ChatGPT - and others! Brian talks about how LLMs continue to evolve and the limitations they have. But identifying language inside your applications can be powerful, and Brian talks through a few scenarios his company uses in production today. Work could you be taking advantage of today!
How much architectural ceremony is enough? Carl and Richard talk to Jeremy Miller about his minimal approach to architecture when building software, including his products Wolverine and Marten. Jeremy talks about how good tooling can simplify architecture, ultimately by writing less code - so that you are writing only the code that is unique to your customer needs.
How is Chocolatey evolving? Carl and Richard talk to Gary Ewan Park about the latest with the open-source Windows package management solution. Gary discusses some of the differences between the various package managers for Windows these days, including WinGet. Each product has its niche, and Chocolatey has done a good job of evolving into a broader product, including Chocolatey for Business, to allow a view of applications installed across all your machines - and being able to push updates out to them.
How's your architecture game? Carl and Richard talk to Thomas Betts about being a better architect. Thomas focuses on the key aspect - communication! An effective architect can talk to all the stakeholders in the language of the stakeholder, whether that's speaking business with business stakeholders, coding with developers, and understanding the needs of the security and operations folks. All those aspects (and more) go into an effective architecture and then come the changes as the implementation challenges happen. The conversation also digs into the importance of documentation to know why decisions were made and how to change them as you respond to changing needs and landscapes.
Large Language Models like GPT-4 are all the rage - how do we use them well? Carl and Richard talk to Amber McKenzie about the challenges and concerns around LLMs, especially regarding the data involved. Amber talks about the risks of creating products around LLMs while the technology is so young and constantly evolving, especially with how the general public reacts to conversational AI. Education is key, and constantly fact-checking - good advice for a lot of technology, but LLMs are making fact checking even more important!
Microservices or Monoliths? Carl and Richard talk to Layla Porter about choosing a middle ground between microservices and monoliths, with modular monoliths. Layla talks about the pushback from the community around microservices and the insistence that there is "one right way." Monoliths have their advantages until they are a problem - but that doesn't mean that re-architecting everything is the right way to go. Chipping off parts of the monolith into satellite modules strikes a balance of flexibility and scalability - and opens the door to accessing the power of bus architectures when needed!
Databases continue to evolve! Carl and Richard talk to Ted Neward about multi-model data stores - which, these days, are most databases! Ted talks about how SQL and NoSQL are not that different - it's only a query engine. But how do you store your data? Today multi-model databases store data with multiple storage engines, and so can store your data in the most appropriate form. There are lots of choices, and it's worth digging deeper into your existing data stores, as well as the new ones available!