The task at hand for me was that I needed to import and transform several different Excel formats into an existing SQL user table. The formats were not guaranteed to always be the same and I needed a way to quickly add new formats without writing a bunch of new code each time.
This past month I finally had a business case that called for Azure Event Hubs to be part of my overall solution to a real-world problem. Up until this point I was always able to get by mostly with plain old Table Storage Queues and sometimes Service Bus Topics, but the business case I started working on this past month involved sending many megabytes of information from potentially thousands of devices around the clock.
DocumentDB is a great NoSql database engine for working with big data. One thing that was difficult to implement though was an intelligent way to page through the results. In this article I will show how I used a combination of caching at the client side of my app along with utilizing continuation tokens from the SDK response to build a decent paging mechanism for big data queries using DocumentDB.
When you begin the habit of writing code to solve problems that you don't have - that's a real problem. Joel Spolsky famously called these people Architecture Astronauts. They create such ambiguous, high-level abstractions in the code that at a certain point the code becomes unreadable and, for all intents and purposes, unmanageable.
There is a somewhat lesser known space trilogy from CS Lewis and in the first book a human from Earth visits a foreign planet that is mainly inhabited by three different classes of physical creatures: the Sorns, the Hrossa, and the Pfifltriggi. At one point in the story the human asks one of the Sorns (its name is Augray) where he got his impressive oxygen mask from. Augray answers the human somewhat sheepishly...