Barbarian Meets Coding Titlebarbarianmeetscoding

WebDev, UX & a Pinch of Fantasy

Barbarian Meets Knockout.js: Introduction, or How to Enrich your HTML Views with Unparagoned User Experience

The “barbarian meets” series are a collection of articles that intend to introduce and explain useful libraries, frameworks, tools and technologies in simple and straightforward terms. These new series will focus on Knockout.js, the popular JavaScript MVVM library

Have you ever done any XAML development? Have you ever wondered or considered how cool it would be to use XAML-style data bindings and MVVM on the web? How awesome to get that level of rich user experience and separation of concerns? Well, that is what Knockout.js is all about.

And now that I have painted a clear picture in your mind .NET developer, and alienated you non .NET developer for using a completely useless simile I will go with the more accurate, yet less sensational introduction:

Knockout.js is an outstanding JavaScript library that lets you create super rich user experiences in the web by providing an easy and seamless way to sync your HTML views with your underlying data. Its core strengths: declarative two-way data bindings and a full-blown templating engine.

I understand… words are just words… you want to see some code! Behold!!!

Read on →

Epic Articles Week 11 2013: This Time About Web Development.

Welcome stranger, sit down by the fire and let us hear the epic deeds, the tales of joy, of woe and of note that occurred these past seven days.

These past two weeks I have been doing 100% front-end web development, loads of JavaScript, Knockout, HTML and CSS both at work and at home. And so, I have been reading a bunch of books and articles on the matter. Below you can see the best of them:

Epic Articles



HTML5 Mobile Development


I am going through one of those hibernation periods in which, not matter what I do, I cannot wake up at 5 am as usual and thus, my side-project development hurts xD. Anyhow, I have managed to start a new Knockout project called iPomodoro, and although it is very, very green still, it is meant to become some sort of Pomodoro technique web-based application. More on that soon :)


Barbaric Tip of the Week: Improve Your Productivity in Visual Studio with Quick Launch/Quick Access

Barbaric Tip of the Week is a weekly series whose main purpose is to share tiny bits of knowledge that I find specially useful and interesting.

Ever since I read focus (Leo Babauta 2010) and found out about application launchers - little utility applications whose sole purpose is to launch other applications with mininum effort - I have been unable to live without them.

An application to launch other applications? What? You may wonder. What do I need that for? Ok. Imagine this scenario: You are typing some code in your favorite editor, or writing an article of some sort, and suddenly you want to download some images from the internetz to use in your app/article, so you go grab your mouse, move it around, click, click, click, until you get to open your browser and search for the images.

With a launcher (like launchy), you would type ALT+SPACE to open launchy and type Chrome or Google TAB I can has cheezburger, press enter and boom there you are, within Chrome. If you extend this to any application or file within your computer (not taking into account launcher extensions, which we could XD), you can easily appreciate its immense usefulness.

Launchy seach screenshot

Ok, now that you know what a launcher is, imagine that you could have the same functionality for Visual Studio. Imagine that, from one place, you could reach all menus, windows, tasks and commands within Visual Studio. That’s what Quick Launch (and Quick Access in Visual Studio 2010) brings you. Everything that you usually need to use the mouse for (evil mouse ⌐⌐) can now be reached from Quick Launch.

Let’s see some examples to illustrate the advantages of Quick Launch. In Visual Studio 2012, click CTLR+Q to access Quick Launch,type recent and open a recent solution.

How to open a recent solution with Quick Launch screenshot

Once you have opened a solution (what you can access via Quick Launch depends on context), type some of the options below or write whatever you want to your heart’s content:

  • close all: Close all documents
  • package manager: Open NuGet Package Manager
  • output: Open output window
  • new project: File -> New -> Project
  • team explorer: Open Team Explorer
  • add class: Add a class
  • run test: Run all tests in solution
  • line numbers off: Turn off line numbers in the text editor
  • sql server: Open Sql Server Object Explorer

You can event use it with ReSharper whenever you forget any shorcuts or as a learning helper tool. For instance, I always forget the shortcut for Surround with Template, so CTRL+Q, type resharper surround and TaDa! it’s CTRL+E, U:

Quick Launch help you learn resharper screenshot

A Note About Quick Access for Visual Studio 2010

If you are using Visual Studio 2010 and not VS2012 fear not, Quick Launch was released as Quick Access as part of the Power Productivity Tools extension. You just need to install it as you would with any other extension and you are pretty much done. One last thing though, by default, Visual Studio 2010 and Power Productivity Tools assign CTRL+3 to Quick Access, if you are using ReSharper you will know that CTRL+<number> is assigned to bookmarking, so you might consider changing the shortcut to CTRL+Q instead.

Ok, comrades, that’s all for today.


New Beginnings

Looks like I was not able to start building anything this past month after all :). I have been suuuuuper busy trying to catch up in terms of web dev skills for my new job at Medius. I started just two days ago and I am in the midst of the hardships/enjoyment of a new codebase and having lots and lots to learn xD. I am really looking forward to the next 6 months :).

Here are some interesting resources I looked at this past month and I wholeheartedly recommend:

Also, Microsoft awarded me with the Microsoft Active Professional 2013 award… which was cool and unexpected XD.

Professionals who are most current in Microsoft technologies receive their distinction as Microsoft Active Professional.

This distinction is given to less than 5% of the population of professionals, with the aim of recognizing their active participation in the community and commitment to stay in touch with the progress of Microsoft technologies.

From MSDN, we are convinced that the success of any project depends not only technological product. It is good people who make the difference.

Microsoft Active Professional 2013 Award screenshot

Cheers and tons of hugs for my colleagues at IFS for being freaking awesome during this past year and a half! :)