Windows Start Button

A developer I work with was worried about the state of affairs in the Windows 8 operating system. Things seemed to be drastically changing. He worried that the new tablet style interface would be accepted by Microsoft, and mark the demise of desktop application development. Well another big change with Windows 8 was supposed to be the removal of the Windows start button.

Yeah the start button has been around since what, Windows 95? Microsoft likes shaking things up. You have seen the craziness in the Microsoft Office 2007 menus. Now they are getting rid of the start button? Turns out that was too bold a move. Guess there was an outcry from the people. Because I just read in BBC News that Microsoft is back pedaling this decisions. The start button is back. About time.

Code Digger

Microsoft has announced the release of Code Digger. It is an extension to Visual Studio 2012. Code Digger analyzes your code and determines an interesting set of inputs which stimulates the paths in your code. The set of inputs is presented in a table that also shows the outputs from your code.

You need to have at least the Professional version of the Visual Studio. You can find the tool in the Visual Studio Gallery. It relies on the PEX engine to do its work. That's because it was created by the PEX team, which is essentially two dudes from Microsoft Research.

There are some other limitations. Your code must be .NET. And it only works on portable class libraries. When you set up your Visual Studio project, choose portable class library as the type. That will enable you to use Code Digger.