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Our 2023 Summer Break

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Our 2023 Summer Break
The .NET Core Podcast

Our 2023 Summer Break

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Episode Transcription

Hello everyone and welcome to THE .NET Core Podcast. An award-winning podcast where we reach into the core of the .NET technology stack and, with the help of the .NET community, present you with the information that you need in order to grok the many moving parts of one of the biggest cross-platform, multi-application frameworks on the planet.

I am your host, Jamie “GaProgMan” Taylor. It’s the time of year again: time to get a little meta and talk about the show on the show. As it’s now summer, I wanted to talk about why the show takes a break, what’s coming up in the next season, and drop a little surprise on you all - so stick around to the very end of the episode for that.

We’re currently on a month long hiatus from the show, and new episodes will start appearing in your feeds on September 8th

or September 6th if you’re a patron of the show

Because of that, this episode will be a little shorter than most. But it still has a lot of information in it that I think you’ll find useful and interesting.

So let’s sit back, open up a terminal, type in dotnet new podcast and let the show begin.

A Mid-year Break

It’s that time of year again: it’s summer in the Northern Hemisphere.

The days are getting a little longer, the temperature has risen, and no one should be cooped up indoors for longer than they have to - especially here in the UK, where we don’t usually get a lot of summer weather. Long time show listeners will know that we typically take the month of August off, and stop releasing new episodes. This is because I think it’s important to be spend time AFK - away from keyboard - and a summer vacation is a great excuse to do just that.

Just like in TV land, our seasons end before the Summer break and start up again afterwards - this means that season five of the podcast has come to a close. Season five started on September 9th, 2022 with an interview with Mads Torgessen about how new C# features are chosen, designed, and worked on; and the season ended on July 21st, 2023 with an interview with Wilberforce and Wilfred of Bunifu Framework about how Bunifu framework can help with building WinForms applications.

Fear not friends, as this is not the end of the show. Just a brief hiatus for a summer vacation; as important as it is to keep up with technology, it’s more so to take break every now and then. And that’s precisely what I’ll be doing, and what my editor will be doing, too.

This show would not be where it is without Mark’s help. So I owe him an incredible debt of gratitude.

did you know that you can hire him to work on your show?

Thank you for your hard work, Mark.

We’ll be back on September 8th - or September 6th if you’re a patron of the show - with some brand new episodes. I’m keeping the titles and guest names a secret for now, but rest assured that a number of the episodes have already been recorded, edited, and uploaded for release.

Reflecting on the Show

I’ve said this a lot, but I honestly would never have dared dream that the idea I had in 2017 for “a podcast about .NET Core,” would have ever taken off; I didn’t think that I would have been able to successfully produce and release five episodes of the show from that idea, let alone five years of fortnightly episodes. I would certainly never thought that I would meet the people that I have because of the show.

incidentally, at MVP Summit this year. Scott Hunter asked me directly why he hadn’t been on the show yet. And like a fool, I didn’t take his contact details.

so if you’re listening to this Scott, do get in touch

In five years, I’ve worked on 127 episodes of the show - not counting the episodes like this one. And it’s been a wild ride so far. There have only been two recordings that I haven’t released, and both of those have been kept back for quality control reasons: I want the content that I put out there to be the highest possible quality, and Mark’s expert knowledge and abilities help with this. But there were two recordings which even he couldn’t do anything about.

But come heck or high water

quite literally at one point, when my home office flooded

I’ve released a new episode every two weeks for the past five years. But more impressive to me is the sheer growth of the podcast. There’s some stats on the website at dotnetcore.show/press-kit so I wont bore you with them now.


I’ve talked about the show’s origin in several places, including the AMA episode

here’s a link directly to that part of the episode

and it really did start out as a conversation with some friends, a coffee (that went cold), my old 2011 Macbook Air, and an empty markdown file. And here we are six years later.

In that time, I’ve met some amazing people, had my first “can I have a selfie with you?” requests at conferences, and interviewed some fantastic, incredibly driven, developers. In fact, the show was originally supposed to only be monologues - based on my writings over at my .NET Core blog, and some of the earliest episodes do link out to there - but it was a chance message from someone that turned this into an interview show. And ever since episode three, it’s been an interview show… mostly.

Whenever I plan out episodes and approach potential guests, I always try to think, “who is a great person to learn from and what can I learn?” And because of that, I try to use the Socratic method when thinking of questions and topics. In the interviews and conversations with guests, I represent all of you and I take that job very seriously. My goal is always to present you with as much value and information as possible - if someone walks away from an episode of the show knowing just one new thing, then I’m happy.

Key Takeaways From Season Five

As such, let’s take a look at some of my key takeaways from season five - because I learned a huge amount this year.

I don’t want this episode to become an hour long, so I’m just going to pick some random takeaways from my Obsidian-based second brain - something I discussed with Dan Clarke in episode 97. I’ll pick a single point for each episode that I found resonated with me on a personal basis and share it here.

I’d love to hear your key takeaways from this season, so make sure to join the discord server or reach out via the show’s contact page and share them with me.

for clarity: season five started with episode 104 and ended with episode 127

Episode 104 - C# with Mads Torgersen

How could I have not started season five with an interview with Mads? For those who missed it, Mads is the lead designer of C# and he shared his knowledge and experience of both working on the C# language for 17 years, and running teams. Earlier this year, I ran into Mads at MVP Summit and he is just as nice, welcoming and gracious with his time in person as he is in the episode - if not more so.

The way that Mads approaches the feedback that the language design team receive about new features really resonated with me.

I’d say that the degree to which people still say that they really love C# and they including they love the new things that we do. That is that is really, that’s really nice to hear.

Now, I it, it’s useful feedback, right to hear that you’re on the right track, it’s even more useful feedback to hear when people are worried about something. And because that, that sort of, there’s always, you know, a set of people who really are for everything we do, there’ll be some people who don’t like it. And it’s important not to wave that off and say, "oh, you know, they’re always naysayers," or whatever, that’s some of the most important signal we can get. Because they’re not wrong. They have their own experience. And in their experience, this isn’t the right thing to do.

What I really like about this is not that Mads is saying that they dive deeply into any negative feedback that they receive, but more that he (and the design team) don’t dismiss it out of hand. He’s also saying that by focusing on the story behind why the negative feedback exists can be as important (if not more) than the positive feedback. This, I feel, fits in line with the main point behind the episode on Empathy, Sympathy, and Compassion episode in that we need to understand the why before the what when we receive feedback on our work.

I also really appreciated what Mads said about having a diverse team of people who work in a highly collaborative manner:

This is something I learned very much from Anders that a collaborative approach to language design is the best. It helps you if you can create, like a safe environment and have a bunch of people with different perspectives contribute.



And we don’t actually even vote that much. I mean, well, we often do what we call a read of the room where we list the options and people will vote for the one that they like, but it’s not like a binding vote. That’s not how decisions are made. It’s part of the discovery process of, “okay, where are we still? So, you know, why are you all not seeing it the same way I am?” and we can find out and we can sort of take the next step. Sometimes we will just say, “yeah, we have to decide something we can’t really spend all day on this.” And we’ll just go with a majority, but it’s not generally a vote-driven decision making process.

You can listen to the episode with Mads at: https://dotnetcore.show/episode-104-c-sharp-with-mads-torgersen/

Episode 105 - More App Security with Tanya Janca

This episode marked Tanya’s second appearance on the show. Her first appearance on the show was back in episode 77 where we talked about her (then) new book: “Alice and Bob Learn Application Security”. Her second appearance was a chance for the two of us to geek out about Application Security, OWASP, and how it doesn’t take a great deal to make your applications more secure than most of the others out there.

Tanya is one of those people who seem to be made of wholesome, awesome energy. It seems that her entire goal with WeHackPurple is to give away as much extremely high quality training as possible. And that makes perfect sense, right? If the barrier to entry for making our applications secure by default is lowered as much as possible, then all of our apps will be more secure by default.

I was like, “listen, I, I want to be able to pay my bills. But I wish I could just give away all my content for free”. Because a big goal of mine is to try to make all software more secure, not just the stuff I’m working on, or just the clients that pay for consulting services, like I wanted to reach a broader audience, which is why I wrote a book.

And it’s a really good book. If you haven’t read it, then I recommend that you do. It’s language and framework agnostic, though does focus on web technologies, and will teach you more than enough to get started. It’s even on Audible, if you prefer that.

I honestly do think that you’ll get a lot out of this book, and I’m not being paid to say that.

What’s really impressive to me is that Tanya keeps coming back to the community with new ways to help spread the knowledge.

One day, I did this post on LinkedIn, and I said, "hey, this person I know is looking for professional mentors, anyone want to mentor them?" And all these people came out and said, "Yeah, I would love to give back." And then all these other people came and said, "Actually, I’m looking for professional mentor, too." And people start pairing off, and I had 900 comments on this LinkedIn post. And yeah, and so then I figured out that, so I posted it on Twitter, and there’s tonnes of people.

And you can find that weekly Twitter activity by searching for the hashtag #cyberMentoringMonday. There are a tonne of people out there who just want to help, so go learn some cybersecurity things.

You can listen to the episode with Tanya at: https://dotnetcore.show/episode-105-more-app-security-with-tanya-janca/

psst. Tanya was also on an episode of Tabs and Spaces. Here’s a link to that

Episode 114 - Statiq with Dave Glick

Dave Glick is the lead developer of Statiq, a static site generator witten in .NET. He’s also a big supporter of the “less is more” approach, in that he really digs the JAM stack - JavaScript, APIs, and Markup - and thinks that more websites should use this development methodology.

JAM stack not only increases your website’s responsiveness

page access times drop because the server isn’t building the page, it’s serving a prebuilt page

but it helps to reduce the attack surface, and can also make your entire website super simple to deploy - it’s just HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and static resources.

Yeah, I mean, security is certainly one very good reason why people lean towards static websites. There are, yeah, there are others: performance is another good one. A lot of times because the resources and the content have been pre-generated you can push it out to very low resource servers like edge servers or content delivery networks. And it can get to the users a little bit faster, since there’s no processing that needs to be done.

Every time that someone browses the site for this show, they’re interacting with a static site.

But using the ideas behind the JAM stack can also lead you to think about the design of your app in different ways, too.

And even when you’re using a JAM Stack model that includes a server with an API, I personally find that splitting my site and my front end bits into this totally separate thing that I can generate beforehand, deploy to a CDN, mirror geographically. The separating that out from my API back end, is a much - at least for me - is a much easier to reason about and more elegant architectural design anyway, than having my UI layer and my front end layer mixed in the same app with my back end and my API’s.

If I’m just thinking about things kind of gets clarified when when I separate those two things out. And then when you’re separating them out at that point. You might as well look at static generation for the front end if you’re you know, you If you’re in that model anyway.

You can listen to the episode with Dave at: 114 - Statiq with Dave Glick

Episode 115 - How We Got Into Security with Ashley Burke, Karla Reffold, and Divya Mudgal

I cannot talk about season five of the show without talking about the time that Ashley Burke, Karla Reffold, and Divya Mudgal agreed to talk with me about how they got into cybersecurity. I was (and still am) incredibly honoured to have hosted a roundtable discussion with them about their careers and expertise.

Ashley, Karla, and Divya are experts in their fields, and I was shocked at what they had to overcome to get to where they are today.

They each gave me a separate key takeaway from this episode, and I’m grateful to them for that:

Nothing I can say here will do that episode any justice, because there are so many nuggets of information in that episode. If you go back to just one episode from this season, please let it be this one.

You can listen to the episode with Ashley, Karla, and Divya at: 115 - How We Got Into Security

Episode 121 - A .NET Discussion with Isaac Levin

Isaac joined me to talk about our own personal histories with .NET, gatekeeping in development and how prevalent and subtle it can be. We also covered some of our thoughts and ideas about ways that corporations could support open-source development - especially those who make a lot of money using open-source technologies.

My discussion with Isaac went in directions that I honestly didn’t think that it would. We talked about how you don’t always need to look super deeply into your language and framework of choice:

And you have listeners that are very much just like Jamie, we need to know all the underlying things. Right? That’s cool. If that’s your thing. If you’re very interested in learning how to do things at that particular level, that’s totally cool.

But I think we make an assumption in technology that all of the problems are very hard to solve and you need to get as low down as possible as quick. And I’m of the belief that most of the really difficult problems in tech have been solved. Right.

Honestly, hearing that was a breath of fresh air for me. I’ve spoken, in the past, about how a lot of developers seem to leap towards the most complex solution possible - take a listen to my conversation with Dave Glick for another example. It’s fantastic to know the nitty gritty, and it will certainly help you in your career, but don’t feel like you have to know it in order to be effective with it.

As a personal example, I didn’t know a great deal about Func<T, bool> until around 2014, but had been using LINQ since it was first released - as part of .NET Framework 3.5, back in 2007.

Isaac is also a keen supporter of open-source software, as we all should be.

you look at a NuGet package or an npm package, you look at the dependencies and then the dependencies upon the dependencies and so forth, and you have stuff that you don’t even know exists that you’re completely responsible or completely dependent on. So if that person decides to take their package off of a registry, it’s going to break your builds and break your apps and you’ll have no idea why or how to fix it.

The reality is that XKCD 2347 got it perfectly right. This is the XKCD which shows that all modern digital infrastructure is built on a handful of projects that random developers create and support. That’s not quite how it works, but it’s pretty close to it.

So if you, or the company you work for, can support the open-source software that your apps depend on, please ask them if they’d consider supporting those projects.

We should support them in any way we can. And I know other companies. Microsoft does this, sentry does this. Most of the big companies do it. And I think it’s really, really important that we continue to remind ourselves that we’re all dependent on the work of people that are doing something as a hobby.

You can listen to the episode with Isaac at: https://dotnetcore.show/episode-121-dotnet-discussion-with-isaac-levin/

Season 6

In case you’re worried, there will be a season 6 of the show; in fact, I’m currently in the process of booking guests for the November-December time-frame as I write and record this, and episodes for September through to early November are already in the can - as they say.

it’s always good to have a backlog of completed episodes, ready to release

So make sure to follow the show on your app of choice - and to head over to dotnetcore.show/follow for ways to do that - and watch for new episodes dropping, very soon.

I can’t give you any hints about episode topics just yet, but I will say this: I’ve really enjoyed the conversations that I’ve had with season 6’s guests so far and cannot wait for you to listen to what they have to say. In fact, I wrote this bit only minutes after recording an episode that is so information dense that it’ll take two listens - at the very least - to get the minimum out of it.

If you can’t wait until season 6 for more development podcast greatness, then can I recommend that you give Tabs and Spaces a listen? We have a pair of episodes which will release during the summer break which will knock your socks off.

A Wild Rebrand Appears!

Ever since Microsoft dropped the “Core” part of the name and moved to just .NET, I’ve been wondering whether the show should be rebranded or not. You may have noticed that since episode 75 with Steve Collins, we’ve had a slightly different intro:

Hello everyone and welcome to THE .NET Core Podcast. An award-winning podcast where we reach into the core of the .NET technology stack and, with the help of the .NET community, present you with the information that you need in order to grok the many moving parts of one of the biggest cross-platform, multi-application frameworks on the planet.

Which is great. It sets the tone from the start of each episode, references the older name of .NET, and gets the episode going. But after the most recent year of conversations, I feel like, as a name, it just isn’t cutting it any more.

Ever since episode 91 with Mark J Price - his third appearance on the show, by the way - I’ve been referring to .NET as “Modern .NET” on the show, on my live streams, and in person, so I thought, “why not use that in the title instead?” So from September 8th - or September 6th if you’re a patron of the show - the show will be rebranding as “The Modern .NET Show”

A new intro has already be written, new episode level art work for the show has been created, and I’ve even had the show’s theme music rewritten from the ground up. A very small percentage of people have seen and heard the new stuff, but it’s been very hush-hush. There’s only one person (Mark, the editor) who has seen it all. So I’m very excited to hear what you all think.

I’m also considering a website redesign, but am also balancing that with other things I want to get done before the season six launch.

There will be a patron exclusive post closer to the September 6th release date with more information, but you’ll have to be a supporter of the show over there in order to see and hear it

or you could just wait for September 8th, but who likes waiting for stuff these days?

Make sure to join the discord server or reach out via the show&rsquo;s contact page so that you can tell me what you think. I really think that the rebrand is going to go down well, and I’m sure that you’ll all love the music and episode level art.

Wrapping Up

We’ll be back on September 8th, 2022 with a rebrand of the show, new music, and exciting new content. Until then, may I ask that you help spread the word about the show?

I can only shout so loudly about the show, and self-promotion always comes off as a little hokey and salesy. The best way for you all to support the show is to tell someone about it - a colleague, friend, or developer that you know. That’s how podcasts grow.

You can also help keep the lights on by buying the show a coffee or becoming a supporter on Patreon, but those are not required in order to keep enjoying the show.

Be sure to take a look at our contact page if you’re interested in:

There’s also the Discord server, which was created in 2022 but I haven’t spent a lot of time talking about it. So go join that, too. I record the episodes on there, and post behind the scenes things there ahead of episode releases. There’s also a great community growing there with people sharing news, tips and tricks, and even helping each other out with their projects.

The show notes, as always, can be found at dotnetcore.show, every URL listed in this episode will be linked there, and there will be a link directly to them in your podcatcher.

And don’t forget to spread the word, leave us a rating or review on your podcatcher of choice - head over to dotnetcore.show/subscribe for ways to do that - or reach out via out contact page and join our discord server, and to come back next time for more .NET goodness.

I will see you again in September. See you later folks.

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