Monthly Archives: September 2019

Sad News: MSDN Mag & (Data Points) Coming to an End

From MSDN Mag

Perhaps I live in a world of rose-colored glasses but this was a surprise to me when Michael Desmond, the Editor-in-Chief, called to let me know in advance of the public announcement.

I’ve loved the magazine long before I was blessed with the opportunity to write for it. But as a columnist for the past 10 years, I’m somewhat heartbroken. The Data Points column (I hope this link will continue to work) that I inherited from John Papa in early 2010 has been a font of inspiration for me. I’ve used it as an excuse to dig into data related technologies that I was curious about.

As long as there was some data angle, the topic was fair game. This allowed me to take my first successful adventure even into Git (2014: Git, It’s Just Data), serverless computing (2018: Creating Azure Functions to Interact with Cosmos DB) and even front end development (2015: Revisiting JavaScript Data Binding — Now with Aurelia). And on the true data front, I had a great reason to start learning about document databases (2011: What the Heck Are Document Databases?) which led to a lot of articles involving Azure Cosmos DB. Thanks to SQL Server for Linux, I finally had the courage to dive into Docker and have gotten to write a slew of articles on different aspects of that.

Many of you have also followed my journey as I gained more and more expertise in Domain Driven Design and continually checked in to see how well EF and then EF Core helped as a mapper between DDD-focus designed classes and a relational database. The first article I wrote connecting the two was in 2013: Shrink EF Models with DDD Bounded Contexts.

And of course there have been a few articles on or using Entity Framework! Over 50 of them!

In all, if you count the final two articles I have in the works, I’ve written (if I’m counting correctly) 82 columns. And there were a few articles in there as well that weren’t for the column such as one on Visual Studio Live Share and Azure Data Studio for special issues.

But what I will never forget is the very first article I wrote for the magazine. It was a gift of an opportunity thanks to the amazing Sara Spalding who was at the time in charge of the entire MSDN operation (at an impressively young age). That was the April 2005 issue and I wrote an article on ADO.NET 2.0. I still have the magazine!

People have suggested that with the demise of the magazine, I should just continue the column on my blog. But admittedly, in addition to the incredible opportunity to share my learnings with an interested audience, having deadlines, a copy editor, tech reviewers and equally important: a paycheck, really drove me to produce this column so diligently for almost 10 years. But I’ll never stop researching and sharing! That’s for sure.

With the evolution of MSDN docs, an entire team to create those and the still growing developer advocacy teams at Microsoft, you will certainly continue to get great content from them as MSDN Magazine yields to this fantastic resource.