It's been a while, and I have been neglectful, as usual, of my silly little blog. I've
decided to give things a facelift around here, since a lot has changed in my professional
life. The last year-and-a-half has been very eventful, to say the least.
First, in January of 2012, I actually started a new job at MasterCard Worldwide. I've
completely stopped writing C# and ASP.NET. MasterCard tends to use Java for most
things. When I first started at MasterCard, Java was where I spent most of my time.
That said, however, I'm definitely not a huge fan of the language or the 5,000 different
frameworks there are to choose from. I've come away from a year and a half with Java,
thinking to myself: there's far too much boilerplate and ceremony involved in
performing what should be simple tasks. There are a few gems out there in the Java
world (like the Play Framework), but most of the time
I wanted to bash my head into a wall in frustration.
One of the patterns I follow a lot is creating enumerations in my code for certain reference data. I usually have tables in my SQL database to back up this data, essentially just to give myself the benefit of referential integrity. But it’s a pain to refer to data based on an arbitrary ID in the database, so enumerations are a way to ensure my code isn’t littered with “magic numbers.”
Enumerations by themselves are powerful, but pretty plain. Since 95% of my development work is in ASP.NET MVC these days, I wanted an easy way to render the options an enumeration provides as a drop-down or radio button list. I could do this manually, and it’s not a lot of code, but I felt like there needed to be an easier, more generic way to handle things.
So this year was the second year, now, that I’ve attended the St. Louis Day of .NET conference. Last year was fairly decent. There were a few good talks, but you can’t expect perfection from a small, regional conference that doesn’t have the draw or influence of something larger (like MIX or PDC). Fair enough. This year, however, will be the last time I attend this conference, and it all boils down to this:
Well it’s been a few months since the last release, and I decided it was time to get cracking. I’m sorry for the delay, but I hope you’ll agree that it was worth the wait. So without further adieu, let’s go over the new stuff!
One of the ways I like to learn is by watching screencasts. I find that it’s easier for me to retain information. I suppose I’m just a more “visual” learner. In light of this, I’ve decided to record a short screencast introducing some of the basic features of ActionMailer.Net.
I’ve recently released a new version (0.4.1) of this library which adds support for true multi-part messaging and a whole bunch of URL and HTML helpers that you can use in your views. ActionMailer.Net also has a pretty thorough set of unit tests, so feel free to hack around and let me know what you think!