Christos's Notebook - 20181006.2

I had many conversations over the past couple of weeks trying to explain what it is that I do these days at Microsoft as a Product Marketing Manager. And you know what? It's hard to explain as it was for my manager when I asked him to explain what a typical PMM day looks like. The best way I can put it is that it's very different from a developer role but these developer skills are invaluable in doing what we do. My goal is to more or less work with the engineering teams, PMs and other marketing teams to …[read more]


Christos's notebook - 20181006.1

That's the start of a new series - tagged '#RandomThougts'. As the tag implies, these will contain short, random thoughts about work, life, and various observations. My hope is to write at least once per day and hopefully, you'll find them useful. If nothing else, it will definitely be an interesting personal experiment. Enough with the fluff in the intro These past 2 weeks have been equally exciting and frustrating. I got to work at Ignite running a few booths and making sure that our staff and attendees got the best out of the conference. Then a flight out …[read more]


.NETConf 2018 - From developers for developers

.NETConf, the virtual Microsoft conference on all this .NET, cloud and mobile is back for another year and it's only a couple of weeks away! This year, the conference is scheduled to run for 3 days but the last day comes with a twist. We plan on having local developers and MVPs from around the world broadcasting live for 24hrs. This is a totally new format and will even feature some non-English talks! We have an excellent line-up of speakers covering everything .NET from local desktop development to Azure Serverless. The goal of the conference is to showcase new features, …[read more]


Enforcing TLS version on Azure WebApps with Resource Manager Policies

Azure Policies are an amazing, albeit well-hidden, feature that allow subscription administrators to define and enforce specific rules on how Azure Resources should be deployed. [Azure Policies](https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/azure-policy/azure-policy-introduction" target="_blank) have been around for a long time, however they only became a first-class feature on Azure recently by getting a dedicated section in the portal. Therefore, when working with Azure Policies in the portal these days, you can now see all the definitions and assignments in one central place, making it easier to manage infrastructure and set explicit rules to enforce …[read more]


Level up!

It's time for that new chapter! This July, the Matskas family will be moving to Seattle, WA, where I'll be taking on my new role at Microsoft as the new Product Marketing Manager for Visual Studio Tools for Xamarin, Visual Studio for Mac and game dev tooling (Unity et al). After 2 years, 4 months and 22 days (who's counting?) as a Premier Field Engineer in the UK, I'm really excited as I transition to my new role. My PFE days The PFE role has been an amazing ride, don't get me wrong! It's given me the platform to learn …[read more]


Working with the latest .NET Core version in VSTS

Working with the latest and greatest is always exciting. As developers, we tend to download new software and SDKs in order to try it and, in some cases, benefit from early fixes or early access to new features. .NET Core 2.1 which was announced at Build is one such example. The first thing I did after the conference announcement was to go on my machine and download it so I could take it for a spin. However, as developers, we're not restricted to our machines. Eventually, the code is pushed into source control and from there the CI/CD …[read more]


Serverless Text Moderation with Azure Functions and the Azure Cognitive Services

I love how Microsoft and Azure is making developers' lives so much easier. Consider the title of this blog post. Now try to think how you would solve this problem 2 or 3 years ago. How much code, infrastructure and data would have to be produced in order to generate a text moderation service that scales, performs and works reliably every single time! Fast forward to today and solving the exact same problem takes no less than 100 lines of code by using the tools that MS has made available to our disposal. The heavy lifting is done by the …[read more]


Using HTTPS with Azure Functions in local development

It's usually the small things that make a big difference. As I was updating my Function Core tools today (the Functions CLI) I was pleasantly surprised to notice some new functionality which was added to the tooling. The Functions team has added the capability to enforce/use HTTPS when developing and debugging in the local development using the Functions Core tools. If you're new to Azure Functions and never used the Core tools, then you may be surprised to find that we now have 2 versions of the tools. I know, but stay with me because they currently server different …[read more]