Guathon, Birmingham 2010

On friday 26th March 2010 I went to the Birmingham Guathon with my fab collegues from Esendex: @jbjon and @michaelpapworth.

Guathon’s are fantastically organised by @plip and @DaveSussman. These selfless chaps put @scottgu (Corporate Vice President in the Microsoft Developer Division) in front of an audience from the tech community, in an Odeon cinema in a town in the UK for an entire day. For. Free.

Scott took us through the brand new Visual Studio 2010 (out 12th April), MVC2 (shiny shine!) and Silverlight (featuring #scottgufacts).

Being a pie-provider to @plip, I was lucky enough to buy him a lunch time beer which meant me and the @esendex team got to spend lunch with @scottgu! What was even more amazing was that @plip introduced me and @scottgu KNEW WHO I WAS!!!

@ruby_gem and @scottgu
Me and Scott Gu!!!!!!

The highlights from @scottgu’s talk, for me, were:


  • Intellisense can figure out a camel case name from an acronym: i.e. HCP will derive HttpCachePolicy
  • New code snippets for HTML, css and javascript
  • var – intellisense picks up “ducktyping” which is good for JS editor. This works cross file too
  • Call hierarchy shows you all the uses including overriding
  • Code visualisation (unfortunately only available in the premium version) was very cool. Derives great sequence diagrams which are editable (i.e. add or edit the diagram and it’s reflected in the code!). You can also use it to jump directly to the code from it.
  • Intellitrace (also only in premium version) which can backtrack when you’re in debug mode!!! Stepping backwards in time.
  • You can now “pin” a variable value in debug mode (click on a variable and a little dialog pops up showing the value of the variable and this can be pinned anywhere you like)
  • You can also now pull frames out of VS and use them in multi-monitor
  • Can run VS2008 with .NET 3.5 running side by side with vs2010 and .NET 4.0
  • The intellisense is accurate to whichever flavour of .net you use
  • Updated the markup of web controls to HTML syntax to take advantage of CSS
  • Improved css support
  • URL routing – map urls to code rather than with strings
  • URL rewrite to replace all old style URLS with these mapped ones
  • Regex generating rule engine
  • There’s an SEO site analysing tool
  • Automatice UI support for validation rules. i.e. EnableDynamicData(typeof(Email)) where Email is the class containing the validation metadata.
  • Validation meta data for all your validation error message needs
  • Code first POCO (Plain old CLR Objects) logic so you don’t have to rely on designer files
  • AJAX
  • JQuery added by default
  • jquery validation MS AJAX CDN
  • Free hosting of AJAX library scripts (so the user can get their script faster!)
  • Ctrl+alt+space is now consume first so it no longer aggressively autocompletes. This now makes real TDD possible! You can generate from Usage to generate all the classes and methods from your test (I currently use resharper in VS2005/8 for this).


  • Transform files for release configuration – just set the configuration when you hit publish.
  • No more multiple web.config files!
  • Deploy also works from command line so can be automated
  • Full powershell integration for web deploy. Packages it up into a zip file


  • <%: %> renders the value as HTML
  • dynamic – late binding
  • will pick the appropriate format checkbox/textbox etc.
  • Model Validator for client side validation
  • Take(int) take a number of random objects
  • Render action is completely independent compared to partial
  • “Areas” (modules or slices of a particular site) to allow encapsulation of Models, Views and Controllers

There’s a lot of really cool stuff in there to explore. It was a real eye opener having @scottgu showing us how to use all these cool things which will just make coding easier. It seems resharper has impressed the Microsoft team enough to take on board all the really useful bits of the plugin. Definitely worth downloading the release candidate and experiencing the coding joy!

One thought on “Guathon, Birmingham 2010

  1. Scott Guthrie had heard of you? I really am impressed!

    I like the blog, BTW. Esendex can’t be working you too hard then.

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