# Thursday, July 30, 2020

GCast 89:

HTTP Request and Response Headers in a Spring Boot Application

Learn how to read headers from an HTTP Request and write them to an HTTP Response.

GCast | Java | Screencast | Video | Web
Thursday, July 30, 2020 9:52:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Monday, July 27, 2020

Episode 619

Mete Atamel on Serverless Containers

Google Cloud Developer Advocate Mete Atamel describes some of the tools for managing serverless containers in the cloud. He discusses the advantages of K Native, Tekton pipelines, Build Packs, and Cloud Run.

Links:

https://knative.dev/

https://cloud.google.com/tekton/

https://buildpacks.io/

https://atamel.dev/

https://cloud.google.com/run/

Monday, July 27, 2020 9:03:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Sunday, July 26, 2020

11-TemporaryKingsTemporary Kings is the penultimate book in Anthony Powell's epic 12-volume series A Dance to the Music of Time and covers the end of the 1950s - 10 years after the preceding novel - Books Do Furnish a Room.

Book 10 introduced - then killed off writer X. Trapnel. But he lives on in "Kings". Two new characters - both American - want to tell his life story. Scholar Russell Gwinnett is researching a biography of X; and film producer Louis Glober wants to make a movie about X's life.    

Narrator Nick Jenkins and those around him are getting older and some pass on, but those who survive retain and evolve their core personalities. One character observes that "...growing old’s like being increasingly penalized for a crime you haven’t committed."

The Widmerpools return. After losing re-election to the House of Commons, Kenneth is granted a Lordship to continue his social ascendency. But he is still married to the awful Pamela, who becomes even more terrible than she has in the past. Kenneth is accused of spying and Pamela is accused of killing her lover and these accusations are addressed in a rant by Pamela near the end of the story.

The revelations near the end are atypical of this series, which heretofore tended to favor character development over plot twists. The latter events are foreshadowed by a painting observed earlier in the novel.

Thanks largely to the ending, this was one of the more entertaining books in the series.

Sunday, July 26, 2020 9:14:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Saturday, July 25, 2020

10-BooksDoFurnishARoomWorld War II has come to an end and Nick Jenkins, the narrator of Anthony Powell's 12-volume A Dance to the Music of Time has taken a job in a publishing house and is writing a biography. Goods are scarce and the nation is tired, but everyone is moving forward with their lives.

Books Do Furnish a Room begins the final trilogy/season/movement of the series.

The ambitious, but insufferable Kenneth Widmerpool has been elected to the House of Lords, which should make him happy; but, as expected, his marriage to femme fatale Pamela Flitton presents many personal difficulties.

This book is mostly about Pamela and the newly-introduced X. Trapnel - an enigmatic author, who becomes infatuated and entangled with Pamela - again with predictably disastrous consequences. Pamela is cruel and manipulative and unfeeling and fascinating. She draws men to her and poisons them, before leaving them damaged.

As always, Powell does an excellent job at building characters and evolving them as they age.

Saturday, July 25, 2020 9:48:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Monday, July 20, 2020

Episode 618

Dave Pine on NET 5 and the Docs team

Dave Pine discusses the coming features in .NET 5 and .NET MAUI and how it affects his Microsoft Documentation teams. We also touch on ethics in open source development and his show - .NET Docs Show.

Links:

https://docs.microsoft.com/

https://dotnetdocs.dev/

Monday, July 20, 2020 9:21:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Sunday, July 19, 2020

09-TheMilitaryPhilosophersWe are now at book 9. The Autumn Cycle (or the Third Movement, depending if you  are using the music or painting allegory) of Andrew Powell's 12-volume A Dance to the Music of Time.

The Military Philosophers covers narrator Nick Jenkins's life as World War II comes to a close. Although Nick remains mostly in Britain as a staff officer and never comes close to the front, he is still greatly affected by the war. He is eventually promoted to Major and he loses two of his oldest friends in the fighting, along with a longtime family friend. All the deaths appear "off camera", but they still move us as we know the history of each victim.

As always, the narrator's life is overshadowed by the lives of those around them and the events in which they find themselves. In this case, the event is the second world war and this book covers about two-thirds of it. It moves quickly and we see the change in people. Nick runs into a comrade from his first unit and is barely remembered because it was so long ago (although it was only a few years).

Kenneth Widmerpool - the ambitious former classmate, who appears in every novel of the series - continues to rise in power, eventually becoming a Colonel. But we see the dark side of his ambition, as some amoral decisions present themselves - decisions that cost the lives of others.

We are introduced to Charles Stringham's niece Pamela Flitton, a Pamela Flitton who keeps reappearing throughout the novel.

Near the end of the book, an old character returns who I suspect will alter Nick's postwar life.

And the author makes reference to French novelist Marcel Proust, with whom he is often compared.

I was touched by a scene in which Nick fights to secure from a General the only room with a bath because an Indian officer of lower rank needed it "for religious reasons". Nick never asks the specifics of the religion and does not try to understand it; but fights for him anyway.

Powell does an excellent job of bringing his characters together and evolving them over time; and he does a good job of conveying the weariness felt by England at the end of the war. A celebration at St. Paul's feels more like a funeral than a commemoration.

Sunday, July 19, 2020 9:04:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Saturday, July 18, 2020

08-TheSoldiersArtIt is 1941 and London is suffering regular bombing raids by the Germans.

Anthony Powell's The Soldier's Art (volume 8 of A Dance to the Music of Time) follows narrator Nick Jenkins's life in the army and the lives of those around him.

The war takes its toll, as bombs kill several of Nick's family, friends, and acquaintances and others die in battle or suicide.

Nick encounters his old friend Charles Stringham, who appears to have recovered from his alcoholism and found some stability - if not happiness - as a cog in the army.

Nick continues to bump into many of his old acquaintances, often at the same time and place - coincidences that are common in this series.

This book shines a light on the petty politics of military and its officers. The omnipresent Kenneth Widmerpool features prominently and he seems to be more and more dominated by his ambition.

I find myself more and more engaged in these characters as the series progresses. I grieve at their deaths of some and I hope for their recoveries of others.

Saturday, July 18, 2020 9:47:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Monday, July 13, 2020

Episode 617

Kayla Cinnamon on Windows Terminal

Windows Terminal, which just released version 1.0 provides a single interface for almost any command-line system. PM Kayla Cinnamon discusses the existing features and what is coming in this tool.

https://github.com/microsoft/terminal
https://aka.ms/terminal-docs

Monday, July 13, 2020 9:58:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Sunday, July 12, 2020

07-TheValleyOfBonesThe Valley of Bones begins the second half of Anthony Powell's epic 12-volume cycle "A Dance to the Music of Time".

It is 1940 and Narrator Nick Jenkins is now in the army and England is now at war with Germany. Nick travels with his outfit to Wales and Ireland but returns to London for a weekend leave to attend a cocktail party with his pregnant wife.

For most of this series, Nick has interacted almost exclusively with his own class - the British middle/upper class and the London arts community. But in Valley, he meets many people outside his social stratum. This gives us a peek into a different part of society in England. The enlisted soldiers are drawn from working men, while the officers were bank managers and other professionals.

Powell includes satire of the military, from the incompetent general to the drunken aid.

This is a good opening to the 3-volume World War II cycle.

Sunday, July 12, 2020 9:52:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Saturday, July 11, 2020

06-TheKindlyOnesAnthony Powell's The Kindly Ones begins and ends with a prelude to world war.

The opening chapter takes us back to narrator Nick Jenkins's childhood - at the outbreak of World War I. We see a love quadrangle among the family servants that results in a nervous breakdown for one of them; a visit from Nick's Uncle Giles; news of the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand, plunging Europe into war; and a local cult leader.

In the closing chapters, England is preparing for an entry into World War II and Nick must make arrangements for his uncle's funeral. Several characters from Jenkins's past turn up at the small town where he is arranging the funeral - remarkable coincidence, but seemingly necessary to advance the story.

In between, a group of friends attend a dinner party at the home of Sir Magnus Donner. The party turns slightly decadent as the guests pose for photographs as the seven deadly sins - a game that nearly results in another nervous breakdown.

At the halfway point of his 12-volume A Dance to the Music of Time series, Powell concludes the "Summer" cycle (or "Second Movement", depending if you accept the painting or the music metaphor for this work) and leads us into the war. One gets a sense of foreboding as the storylines take darker turns.

I liked the preludes to world war that bookends the novel, and the evolution of the characters over time.

I look forward to the second half of this cycle.

Saturday, July 11, 2020 9:51:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Monday, July 6, 2020

Episode 616

Yina Arenas on Microsoft Graph

Microsoft Graph is a tool that allows you to query and analyze data about a user - including messages, calendar items, SharePoint lists, shared documents, devices, and many mores. Program Manager Yina Arenas describes how developers can use Graph to generate insights and enhance their applications. She also lists some of the new and recently-announced features of Graph.

Links:

https://graph.microsoft.com/

https://aka.ms/ge

Monday, July 6, 2020 8:20:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Sunday, July 5, 2020

7/5
Today I am grateful to watch fireworks from my balcony last night.

7/4
Today I am grateful to be a citizen of the United States of America.

7/3
Today I am grateful for easy Amazon returns.

7/2
Today I am grateful for new bike pedals.

7/1
Today I am grateful to ride the northern part of the Chicago Lakefront Trail for the first time since the lockdown.

6/30
Today I am grateful for meals from 2 different African countries yesterday.

6/29
Today I am grateful for my new iPhone.

6/28
Today I am grateful for my first visit to Jackson Park.

6/27
Today I am grateful for my first car wash in almost a year.

6/26
Today I am grateful for a long bike ride yesterday.

6/25
Today I am grateful to have Nick and Adriana here this week.

6/24
Today I am grateful for dinner with family in a beer garden last night.

6/23
Today I am grateful to those who have had a positive influence on my character.

6/22
Today I am grateful to spend Father's Day with family and friends.

6/21
Today I am grateful to be a father.

6/20
Today I am grateful for a chance to visit many places in south Chicago honoring the contributions of African Americans to this city and country.

6/19
Today I am grateful for a day off to relax and reflect.

6/18
Today I am grateful to those who provide constructive feedback.

6/17
Today I am grateful for all the public art in my city.

6/16
Today I am grateful for so many beautiful churches in my city.

6/15
Today I am grateful for eBooks.

6/14
Today I am grateful to all those who donated over $1700 to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline last week.

6/13
Today I am grateful to Eric for inspiring me to publicly support mental health this past month.

6/12
Today I am grateful for my new bike lock.

6/11
Today I am grateful for my new shorts, so I no longer need to choose between long pants and gym shorts on a hot day.

6/10
Today I am grateful for mailmen (and women)

6/9
Today I am grateful that the Chicago Public Library re-opened yesterday.

6/8
Today I am grateful for a weekend in southwest Michigan.

Sunday, July 5, 2020 1:45:27 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Saturday, July 4, 2020

05-CasanovasChineseRestaurantThe fifth novel of Anthony Powell's A Dance to the Music of Time is the darkest so far in the series.

Powell bookends his story nicely with a visit to

The novel begins with a flash-forward to a woman singing near a bombed-out restaurant in war-torn London, which reminds narrator Nick Jenkins of a dinner years earlier with the now-deceased Mr. Deacon, musician Hugh Moreland, music critic Maclintick, and other English bohemians at the Italian-turned-Chinese restaurant named Casanova's Chinese Restaurant, which is also the title of this book. During the flashback, the group discusses marriage, seduction, suicide, and other topics that become relevant later in the novel. The conversation is recalled near the end when one of the group of friends kills himself, following the destruction of his marriage.

Earlier books in the series presented relationships and marriages that failed for various reasons, but CCR presents one particularly dysfunctional relationship in which the couple bicker constantly - often to the embarrassment of those around them. The situation is at first amusing but leas to a tragic end.

Characters from previous novels make appearances. The eccentric Erridge has disappeared to fight in the Spanish Civil War, only to return at the story's conclusion. And Nick's school friend Stringham shows up unannounced and drunk at his mother's party.

Again, the narrator's life takes a back seat to those around him. Nick's wife miscarries their child, but that event is glossed over and only seems a reason to run into Morland at the hospital and more attention is devoted to the     birth and death of Morland's child.

This book is darker than the first four with its suicide, infidelity, alcoholism, and divorce. But it is not without its humor.

Saturday, July 4, 2020 9:09:00 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
# Friday, July 3, 2020

StemChallengeLast month, I completed a school year working with students at Infinity Math, Science & Technology High School.

The students were participating in the Illinois Science & Technology Institute's STEM challenge and I was one of a group of volunteers helping to mentor them. This year's theme asked students to design projects using Artificial Intelligence. I was impressed by the projects - each of which was designed to help those less fortunate. The three projects delivered were:

Fast Food Sign Language - an application designed to assist deaf people communicating their order at a fast food restaurant

OS-Fruitable - an app designed to help blind people by identify a fruit and its level of spoilage, based on a phone photograph

Pal Protect - a virtual friend device that allows parents to track younger children and for children to call for assistance when needed, while also providing entertainment.

We were supposed to host the school presentations at the Chicago Microsoft office; then select one team to represent the school at the statewide showcase to be held at the Museum of Science and Industry. But the COVID-19 crisis threw a monkey wrench into those plans. So this event was entirely virtual.

It was a pleasure to see the ideas that students came up with to help their communities using AI. And it was a pleasure mentoring high school students for this event the second year in a row.

I am looking forward to next year!

Friday, July 3, 2020 5:14:00 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)