March 4, 2014
Discussion After Class
The Due Date for Programming Challenge 5:14 is now March 16th. I don't have time
to change it on the Syllabus right now but I have changed it in Sakai.
There is always the question, "What languages do I need to know to get a job?" You
need more than one to be a professional programmer. Here's what I consider a good
- Phone Development
- Math through Trig
- Accounting 1 (&2)
- Computer Graphics
- English, Technical Writing, and Speech should go without saying.
There are probably more that could be added to each list that would enhance your
prospects but this list will get you well on your way.
Don't forget about
Orlando Code Camp
Another event you may want to consider is
It's not during this semester but anything with bar in the name is worth checking
March 2, 2014
The projects we started in class last week, Feruary 24th, are due tonight. Please
make sure you submit them on the Assignments page in Sakai under the heading of
Group Project. They cannot be graded if submitted as an attachment with a Sakai
You may resubmit as many times as you like until the deadline.
This week we will be discussing Chapter 6, "Procedures and Fuctions". We will also
begin a discussion on the time value of money and how to make it work for you. I
not only want to make you smart... I want to make you rich.
February 27, 2014
Chapter 4 Assignments
I have received questions on the project assigned for Chapter 4; 4:++. The required
projects are either #9 or #11. Number 11 is the, "Internet Service Provider, Part
1". From the questions I've received, my fear is that people are missing the part
of the problem located on page 283.
The extra credit portion of problem 11 is actually problem number 12, "Internet
Service Provider, Part 2". This is an excellent project. It's just slightly more
challenging than problem 9, "Freezing and Boiling Points" thus the higher number
of points to be earned.
A couple of problems:
- people are sending their VB questions to me via Sakai Messages. The rest of the
class can't see them there so I don't want to answer them there.
- people are sending me e-mail at my campus account. I never check that account.
I only use Sakai Forums and Messages. Sakai Messages are for notes specifically
not related to VB.
This is not a complaint. I just don't want to miss your questions or you to miss
all of the answers.
A few people missed class last week where we started the extra credit project. Not
to fear... there will be more opportunities for extra credit. I want to give everyone
a chance to make an 'A' since this is the most important class you will take in
In the coming weeks we are going to begin our discussion of how to make money
work. Please do your best not to miss class. I can't make you rich if you're
February 26, 2014
More extra points
I know everyone is most likely finished with their group projects but I wanted to
give you another shot at a few extra points.
First off, I want to let you know that I'll be looking for a couple of things when
I grade this project.
- Does the program run and produce the right answer?
- Does the program have any market appeal? How does it look? Is there anything that
jumps out at the user?
In class I stated there would be three grades:
How to get more points?
There are two items our authors left out of the text; Splash Screens and About Boxes.
A Splash Screen is the form that loads and displays while a program is being loaded.
All of Microsoft's programs and most others on the market have them. 15 points
will be added to each member of the group that has the best Splash Screen, 10 points
for second place, and 5 points for third place. O points will be added for any
group that does not add the Splash Screen.
To be considered for extra points, the Splash Screen should contain the title,
a one line description of the program, and an image that represents the topic or
purpose of the program.
The second item is the About Box. It will carry the same point values as the Splash
An About Box is a place to tell something about the program, the company, or the
developers. Your About Box should contain a brief description of the program and
a list of the names of your group's members.
These are two simple items built into Visual Studio. You should have no trouble
finding information in Help or on the Internet.
An assignment has been created in Sakai for your submission.
Second post for
February 21, 2014
I briefly mentioned in class that I like and recommend you go through the authors'
Kayak Tours videos. I just reviewed the ones for Chapter 5 and I can tell you that
the methods the author used for clearing the checkboxes in a list and testing for
a tandem kayaks is very good. He also uses a Boolean flag similar to the one used
in the VBCalculator program we did in class. These videos are short, easy, help
explain the chapter content, and extends the logic you can use to write more efficient
February 21, 2014
The following data is based on the first four quizzes and the project from Chapter
The high score, currently shared by Ms. Logue and Mr. Babinsack is 249. The class
average is 161.375.
Excel makes grading so easy. There are five possible grades and five divisions
on the chart.
Anyone who wants to raise their grade still can and I want to help every one of
Here are some things to try to do differently:
- Turn in your work. Sometimes people start their work but think it unworthy of submission.
Any good effort generates points. 60 points or 10 points are better than 0 points.
Turn it in.
- Find a way to give a little more time for reading, study, and working the examples.
- Try the chapter videos. Most are only a few minutes long. They are designed to
be a review or an example of how the chapter content works.
- Post questions to the Forum no matter how simple or hard. I like simple questions
because I don't have to work so hard. I like hard questions because they make me
think and sometimes you force me to look up or learn something new.
- Ask questions in class. I enjoy answering questions because it makes me feel like
I'm contributing to your success. You are not interupting or bothering me so ask
- Use our tutors. Your family and friends pay a lot of taxes so we can hire good
tutors. Please use them.
- If I've missed something, tell me what I can do to help you learn this material.
Spring Break is still ahead of us. It's a great time to catch up or turn up the
Your success is utlimately up to you and there are resources here to help you.
February 18, 2014
Important: Change to the Syllabus
The VBCalculator program and my ability to talk endlessly about things that weren't
related to the chapter put us a little behind. I have modified the Syllabus and
updated Sakai to reflect the changes.
The schedule change will work to your advantage especially if you have fallen a
little behind or wanted a little more time to study and digest the material.
You may recall that the previous schedule had one class titled TBA (to be announced).
That was the only slack time built into the course and it has now been spent so
this is the only change to the schedule for the rest of the semester.
If you were behind, please use this time wisely to get all caught up.
If you're having trouble with any of the material, please see one of the tutors
for this course. Ms. Jenn Hella is scheduled to be in room V-102 every Monday and
Wednesday from 2-4pm. You may also e-mail her with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mr. Sweet may also schedule time on campus if arranged ahead of time. You can reach
him through the Sakai Message facility.
The goal here continues to be your success and helping you define that success was
the purpose of our discussion last night. I hope you found it useful or at least
This is a link to the
that we completed in class. It was originally written by Evangelos Petroutsos,
the author of, "Mastering Visual Basic 2010". It is one of my favorite VB books.
Post questions to the Forum and get all caught up.
See you next week.
February 17, 2014
People have asked some very good questions about grading but rather than respond
to just one person I want to share the information with the class.
If you've missed a project or blown a quiz it certainly does not mean you cannot
pass the course or still make an 'A'. If you look at the Assignments page of the
Syllabus you will see that the assignments go up in point value as the course progresses.
There will also be opportunities for extra credit. The purpose is to give everyone
a little slack to compensate for a bad assignment or quiz but if you continue to
miss or do poorly on assignments it does begin to diminish your wiggle room and
eventually your grade.
Please only submit one project for each assignment unless otherwise noted. Additionally,
please don't submit projects through Sakai's message page either because it's late
or you would like to have it previewed prior to the due date. All projects submitted
in the Assignments 1 page prior to the due date will be graded. No work is accepted
Grading for the first couple of projects is fairly liberal. The goal is for everyone
to get up to speed with the simpler projects in the first part of the book.
I look forward to seeing you in class.
February 11, 2014
Period of Adjustment (not the one by Tennessee Williams)
Some people are struggling with the homework and the examples we work in class.
That's OK. If you're struggling it's because you're putting in the effort and learning.
That learning part is the whole point. Don't be embarrassed, don't let the frustration
get the best of you, and don't run down to the dropout line. You can do this and
you'll be glad you did.
If you are getting a little behind in class or think your homework is going too
slowly, just remember that it just takes practice.
The next best thing to having the authors, the teacher, or a tutor sitting next
to you is working through the examples in the book and/or the videos. The authors
have several videos for each chapter. I have a few videos on the class website.
They are all designed to help you get over the hump.
The VBCalculator is a great project because it brings together so many of the things
we've discussed and adds a lot of interesting points not covered in our book. This
is my copy of where we left off last night with the
If you got behind or missed a little something, this will help you start out with
everyone else when we return to it next week.
What's in the pot at the end of the rainbow? I've added two entries on the main
menu of the class website:
- Salaries: Visual Studio Magazine
- Salaries: Robert Half Technology Salaries (check out pages 10-13)
Most importantly I want you to remember the saying, "You can tell how big a person
is by what it takes to make them quit."
See you in class.
February 7, 2014
is the Class Examples project we started in class. I modified it slightly. We
will start with this on Monday night.
Hope all's well. I look forward to seeing you in class and moving you closer to
February 6, 2014
A Welcome Addition and a Big Help
Mr. Louis Sweet, a former top of the class student and current VB tutor at SSC,
will be assisting me for the rest of the semester on grading projects and watching
February 5, 2014
Our book covers web development in Chapter 11 but I intend to start it earlier to
give you more time with that discipline. All of the work for that discussion can
be fully executed in Visual Studio and nothing else is required. However, I want
to make you aware of something you can acquire, and should have in the future, your
own domain name.
What is a domain name? It's a name that represents a specific place on a network
such as the Internet.
Domain names are unique. You should have your own. COP1000.com is the domain name
for our website. I own it... that is to say it is registered to me. It costs less
than $15 a year. It gives me a unique place on the network to store files, programs,
text, videos, pictures, etc.
When we build our websites in this class, they will only exist on the computer on
which they are built. If you want it to go live (be available for others to see)
you need a domain name and a server or hosting service. The domain is your unique
address and the server or hosting service is where you copy the files of your webiste
so they can be accessed.
Some technical people like to have their own servers and that's fine on a small
scale. A hosting service provides space on their server for which they charge a
small monthly fee; usually less that $5 a month. I think Godaddy.com is about $5
a month and 1and1.com is a little less for hosting but more for registering a domain
We can talk about all of this in class but if I were you I would start thinking
about a good and fitting domain name, see if it's available, and register it whether
you get a hosting service or not. Once a name is registered it is no longer available
to anyone else as long as the annual fee is paid.
Chapter 11 is about web development so if you have questions about domains, hosting
services, or the like, please feel free to start the discussion there.
February 4, 2014
We have a tutor!
Ms. Jenn Hella will be in the office, room V-102, every Monday and Wednesday from
2-4pm. You are welcome to meet with her during that time or you may e-mail her
A lot of stuff...
We covered a lot of stuff last night but not all of Chapter 3 so we'll finish that
Things we covered last night that were not part of this chapter include:
It's easy to get lost...
- Creating a Project Template (not in the book)
- Including multiple pages in a project (Chapter 7)
- Navigating between pages (Chapter 7)
- When to use or not use Close (class example)
Sooner or later everyone gets lost. This stuff is not hard... just a lot of steps...
getting lost is just part of learning.
The more examples you work in the book the better you will get and the better you
can follow along in class. There's a series in the VideoNotes for developing a
kayak rental program that progresses to the end of the book. I think you might
Please let me know if you get lost in class as soon as you know you're lost.
February 3, 2014
List of 3 character prefixes (Hungarian Notation)
A link has been added to the
that will take you to a good list of three character prefixes for variables and
objects; btn for Button, txt for TextBox, chk for a CheckBox, etc.
These prefixes are known as Hungarian Notation and named to honor a brilliant Hungarian
computer scientist that worked at Microsoft, Charles Simonyi.
Microsoft has attempted to reverse their support of Hungarian Notation in recent
years but programmers rejected Microsoft's decision and except for some of Microsoft's
programmers the rest of the world uses it to this day. If you program long enough
you will learn that Microsoft can be a bit schizophrenic.
Hungarian Notation will help you keep your variables and objects organized and make
your work more efficient.
Second message on January 29, 2014
Installing Visual Studio
If anyone is still having trouble installing Visual Studio, use the CD that came
with the book so you don't get behind on the assignments. That version will run
side by side with other versions so when you are finally able to download the Ultimate
version you can install it when it's available.
January 29, 2014
Is everyone ready?
If there is anyone who cannot see the authors' website where their videos are posted,
please let me know by posting in the Forum on the topic, "Access to the authors'
Is there anyone who still does not have access to Sakai, MSDN AA (now called DreamSpark
Premier), or that does not have Visual Studio 2012 or 2013 installed? If so, please
send me a message in Sakai right away.
The student files are now posted on the class website. That probably violates copyright
laws but I had to make sure everyone could do their homework.
I am still waiting on an answer from the publisher about access to the right site.
I will publish the info when I get it.
Fourth message on January 28, 2014
Resolving MyProgrammingLab.com issue
I have been back and forth with the Publisher today with the support of our Program
Manager. It is clear that we will not be using the MyProgrammingLab.com website
this semester but I have not received an answer about what access those who purchased
or rented the eBook will have to the basic site with VideoNotes and student files.
I just sent a followup email to our representative at the publisher's and hope to
have an answer tomorrow.
Thank you for your patience. Do not stress over any delay. We will take the situation
in stride and adjust accordingly.
Third message on January 28, 2014
The Program Manager (my boss) tells me there was so much trouble with the MyComputerLab.com
practice questions last semester she decided not to use them this semester. Therefore,
the registration number in the front of your book should give you access to the
The remaining question now is, for those of you who have purchased or rented the
electronic version of the textbook, is there a number in your book that gives you
access to a web site with the VideoNotes and student files?
I think I should post a new topic in the Forum so I can your answers before next
Monday's class. If you cannot access the site please post there. If this does
not apply to you then please disregard.
Second message on January 28, 2014
Installing from ISO
Here’s the procedure I use for installing software from ISO files and it has not
let me down yet:
and download Virtual Clone
- Install it.
- Run it one time.
- Download the ISO file from DreamSpark and put it in a directory where you can find
- After the download completes, double-click on the ISO file. Depending on your OS
you may see a message asking if you want to mount the file or something like that
or it may just ask if you want to run setup. The answer to either is yes. Installation
- If asked which files you want to install in Visual Studio select all unless drive
space is an issue. If so, leave off; F#, C#, and C++. Then complete the installation.
Please let me know if you have any problems with that.
First message on January 28, 2014
"You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to make them quit."
Some have had trouble getting into Sakai, accessing or installing Visual Studio,
and a few got lost in the material we covered in class last night and just didn't
ask for help. Some just weren't confident that it was all clear to them. For any
of these conditions all I can say is, "Don't Panic". This course takes a little
more set up and adjustment than some but in a week or two everyone will be confident
and pleased with where you are.
The key to this course is to read the book, work through the examples, take the
quizzes, work out the projects, and turn them in on time. If you miss a quiz
or project, especially in the first half of the semester, it won't destroy your
grade as long as you get caught up and understand the material. The projects in
the latter half of the semester are worth more points and it's usually enough to
make up for one you missed early on. There will also be extra credit opportunities.
My main point is I hate to see people drop this course when they don't have to.
We seem to have a very good group in this class. Set your mind now on completing
this course. I see people every semester who drop out that shouldn't have.
January 24, 2014
Assignments & Quizzes
If you check Sakai you will see that the quizzes and assignments are now posted.
Please post all questions to the Forum so that all may benefit from the discussion.
You may notice that I have taken the website off of the home page in Sakai. It
was so compressed it was unreadable so I just took it off.
Please submit your introduction to the Forum if you haven't already.
Have a good weekend. See you Monday night.
January 23, 2014
Quizzes 1 & 2
There is a slight problem with the quizzes for Chapters 1 & 2. I should have it
resolved and the quizzes posted soon.
January 17, 2014
A slight change was made to the Assignments portion of the Syllabus in the Roll
Call column. Nothing major but for those who print or copy the Syllabus I just
want to make sure you have the most current version.
Enjoy your break and I'll see you on the 27th.
January 16, 2014
Christmas came early...
The MSDN AA accounts have been set up and you should have received an e-mail with
the link, your user ID, and password. Everything on the MSDN AA site is free to
download so get whatever you need.
If you have not received account information please let me know right away so I
can contact the MSDN AA administrator.
If you have any problems downloading or installing the software please post your
questions to the Forum under the topic MSDN AA.
January 14, 2014
It was a pleasure meeting all of you last night. It's always interesting to learn
about your diverse backgrounds and interests.
Please post your introductions in the Forum.
I look forward to seeing you again on the 27th.
January 13, 2014
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