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Showing posts from January, 2010

Sneak Peek: Code Hinting

In my opinion this is the coolest feature since Regex Hero first launched. Soon this will be making its way into the paid version. I still have some more work to do to perfect it. I want to make it a little more intelligent. And of course I need to provide tool tips for everything. Once that's done this should be a very helpful addition.

Improper Highlighting Bug Fixed

Apparently I introduced a bug with the last major update to Regex Hero. The multi-threading I put in place had a few problems. On rare occasions you'd see highlighting that made no sense at all. I'm doing multi-threaded auto-saving, multi-threaded benchmarking, and even multi-threaded initialization in Regex Hero. But I need to set aside more time to figure out a way to do multi-threading for the real-time highlighting more reliably. For now I had to revert back to the old way of doing things. It may not be fast when dealing with massive amounts of text. But at least it's reliable.

Account Recovery with OpenID

I made some improvements to the login system this weekend. The biggest improvement is the new ability to recover an account when you can't login through your primary OpenID provider. I asked a question on StackOverflow a couple months ago about how this should be implemented. This is something I've been meaning to do for awhile but on Friday there was a sense of urgency as there were some peculiar issues with occasionally preventing you from authenticating. So I made a video to explain OpenID as well as the new account recovery feature: I am pretty happy with the way things turned out at this point. I've been using OpenID logins on Regex Hero for several months now. The excellent DotNetOpenAuth project has simplified things from my end tremendously. And now that this account recovery feature is in place I can sleep a little easier.

New Videos Section, Improved Responsiveness, and Better Memory Efficiency

Videos After I created the new library section which allows voting and comments I now have some very useful pieces to build upon. So this weekend I created a new videos section to complement the library. To start off with I created a video to demonstrate the process of writing a Strong Password Regular Expression . I decided to host the videos myself and use a Silverlight video player . The player I used is open-source and very slick. I made a few modifications to it for my own use. I primarily worked on the media controls auto-hiding behavior and I think I finally have it the way I want it. Improved Responsiveness While that would ordinarily be a productive weekend, I've been meaning to make a couple technical improvements to the tester for some time now. The first issue is a general slowness when you're dealing with a huge target string with real-time highlighting on. The trouble is that the application has to run the regular expression, calculate the positions

SQL Server Didn't Start This Morning

I apologize for the downtime this morning. ORCS Web took the virtual dedicated server down early this morning for some security patches. As usual they are really good about being proactive with server maintenance. And fortunately they typically choose a time when nobody's really using the site anyway. However, when the server came back up this morning the SQL Server instance didn't. So they are investigating why that is so it won't happen again. UPDATE: I just got word back from ORCS Web: "I changed the server to 'Automatic (Delayed Start)' which usually fixes this problem. SQL will sometimes not start if there are not enough resources available, delaying the start generally resolves that problem." So hopefully that'll fix it.

Improving the Library

I've been spending some time the past several days working on a new page of the site, the .NET Regex Library . I wanted to set the groundwork for this section of the site so that it may grow into something substantial. So I borrowed some ideas from StackOverflow by incorporating a rating system. And then I added the ability to add comments as well. At some point it's going to require a search engine, and for that I already have some ideas from another recent project. The idea then is that the order of the search results will be based of votes and relevance, hopefully making it much easier to find what you're looking for. The same search engine will make its way into the Regex Hero tester itself. Anyway, allow me to back up a bit. The regular expressions in the library were all created within Regex Hero. As such they have been tested with the .NET regex engine, which is kind of cool. On top of that, anyone can contribute to this library, which is very cool. You m

Year in Review 2009

I spent most of my weekends in 2009 working on Regex Hero. I've enjoyed working on it more than any other project last year. Regex Hero also has the distinction of being the first product I've ever sold on my own. I gave away 105 licenses during a promotional giveaway, and then I sold one copy in December. As I promised, I gave the proceeds from December (all $14.11 of it) to the Alliance for Children Everywhere organization. They'll use it wherever it's needed most. And although it isn't much, I know every little bit helps. Of course I wish I had done better in December. But I think I know why I didn't. There still isn't enough incentive to buy Regex Hero. There are some very cool features I'm working on which should help. Some of these will only be available to licensed customers. I'm constantly trying to figure out which features should be free and which shouldn't. Those decisions can be tough. But as always, I'll blog ab