Microsoft Team Foundation Server Training Classes in Albany, New York

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The original article was posted by Michael Veksler on Quora

A very well known fact is that code is written once, but it is read many times. This means that a good developer, in any language, writes understandable code. Writing understandable code is not always easy, and takes practice. The difficult part, is that you read what you have just written and it makes perfect sense to you, but a year later you curse the idiot who wrote that code, without realizing it was you.

The best way to learn how to write readable code, is to collaborate with others. Other people will spot badly written code, faster than the author. There are plenty of open source projects, which you can start working on and learn from more experienced programmers.

Readability is a tricky thing, and involves several aspects:

  1. Never surprise the reader of your code, even if it will be you a year from now. For example, don’t call a function max() when sometimes it returns the minimum().
  2. Be consistent, and use the same conventions throughout your code. Not only the same naming conventions, and the same indentation, but also the same semantics. If, for example, most of your functions return a negative value for failure and a positive for success, then avoid writing functions that return false on failure.
  3. Write short functions, so that they fit your screen. I hate strict rules, since there are always exceptions, but from my experience you can almost always write functions short enough to fit your screen. Throughout my carrier I had only a few cases when writing short function was either impossible, or resulted in much worse code.
  4. Use descriptive names, unless this is one of those standard names, such as i or it in a loop. Don’t make the name too long, on one hand, but don’t make it cryptic on the other.
  5. Define function names by what they do, not by what they are used for or how they are implemented. If you name functions by what they do, then code will be much more readable, and much more reusable.
  6. Avoid global state as much as you can. Global variables, and sometimes attributes in an object, are difficult to reason about. It is difficult to understand why such global state changes, when it does, and requires a lot of debugging.
  7. As Donald Knuth wrote in one of his papers: “Early optimization is the root of all evil”. Meaning, write for readability first, optimize later.
  8. The opposite of the previous rule: if you have an alternative which has similar readability, but lower complexity, use it. Also, if you have a polynomial alternative to your exponential algorithm (when N > 10), you should use that.

Use standard library whenever it makes your code shorter; don’t implement everything yourself. External libraries are more problematic, and are both good and bad. With external libraries, such as boost, you can save a lot of work. You should really learn boost, with the added benefit that the c++ standard gets more and more form boost. The negative with boost is that it changes over time, and code that works today may break tomorrow. Also, if you try to combine a third-party library, which uses a specific version of boost, it may break with your current version of boost. This does not happen often, but it may.

Don’t blindly use C++ standard library without understanding what it does - learn it. You look at std::vector::push_back() documentation at it tells you that its complexity is O(1), amortized. What does that mean? How does it work? What are benefits and what are the costs? Same with std::map, and with std::unordered_map. Knowing the difference between these two maps, you’d know when to use each one of them.

Never call new or delete directly, use std::make_unique and [cost c++]std::make_shared[/code] instead. Try to implement usique_ptr, shared_ptr, weak_ptr yourself, in order to understand what they actually do. People do dumb things with these types, since they don’t understand what these pointers are.

Every time you look at a new class or function, in boost or in std, ask yourself “why is it done this way and not another?”. It will help you understand trade-offs in software development, and will help you use the right tool for your job. Don’t be afraid to peek into the source of boost and the std, and try to understand how it works. It will not be easy, at first, but you will learn a lot.

Know what complexity is, and how to calculate it. Avoid exponential and cubic complexity, unless you know your N is very low, and will always stay low.

Learn data-structures and algorithms, and know them. Many people think that it is simply a wasted time, since all data-structures are implemented in standard libraries, but this is not as simple as that. By understanding data-structures, you’d find it easier to pick the right library. Also, believe it or now, after 25 years since I learned data-structures, I still use this knowledge. Half a year ago I had to implemented a hash table, since I needed fast serialization capability which the available libraries did not provide. Now I am writing some sort of interval-btree, since using std::map, for the same purpose, turned up to be very very slow, and the performance bottleneck of my code.

Notice that you can’t just find interval-btree on Wikipedia, or stack-overflow. The closest thing you can find is Interval tree, but it has some performance drawbacks. So how can you implement an interval-btree, unless you know what a btree is and what an interval-tree is? I strongly suggest, again, that you learn and remember data-structures.

These are the most important things, which will make you a better programmer. The other things will follow.

Python and Ruby, each with roots going back into the 1990s, are two of the most popular interpreted programming languages today. Ruby is most widely known as the language in which the ubiquitous Ruby on Rails web application framework is written, but it also has legions of fans that use it for things that have nothing to do with the web. Python is a big hit in the numerical and scientific computing communities at the present time, rapidly displacing such longtime stalwarts as R when it comes to these applications. It too, however, is also put to a myriad of other uses, and the two languages probably vie for the title when it comes to how flexible their users find them.

A Matter of Personality...


That isn't to say that there aren't some major, immediately noticeable, differences between the two programming tongues. Ruby is famous for its flexibility and eagerness to please; it is seen by many as a cleaned-up continuation of Perl's "Do What I Mean" philosophy, whereby the interpreter does its best to figure out the meaning of evening non-canonical syntactic constructs. In fact, the language's creator, Yukihiro Matsumoto, chose his brainchild's name in homage to that earlier language's gemstone-inspired moniker.

Python, on the other hand, takes a very different tact. In a famous Python Enhancement Proposal called "The Zen of Python," longtime Pythonista Tim Peters declared it to be preferable that there should only be a single obvious way to do anything. Python enthusiasts and programmers, then, generally prize unanimity of style over syntactic flexibility compared to those who choose Ruby, and this shows in the code they create. Even Python's whitespace-sensitive parsing has a feel of lending clarity through syntactical enforcement that is very much at odds with the much fuzzier style of typical Ruby code.

For example, Python's much-admired list comprehension feature serves as the most obvious way to build up certain kinds of lists according to initial conditions:

a = [x**3 for x in range(10,20)]
b = [y for y in a if y % 2 == 0]

first builds up a list of the cubes of all of the numbers between 10 and 19 (yes, 19), assigning the result to 'a'. A second list of those elements in 'a' which are even is then stored in 'b'. One natural way to do this in Ruby is probably:

a = (10..19).map {|x| x ** 3}
b = a.select {|y| y.even?}

but there are a number of obvious alternatives, such as:

a = (10..19).collect do |x|
x ** 3
end

b = a.find_all do |y|
y % 2 == 0
end

It tends to be a little easier to come up with equally viable, but syntactically distinct, solutions in Ruby compared to Python, even for relatively simple tasks like the above. That is not to say that Ruby is a messy language, either; it is merely that it is somewhat freer and more forgiving than Python is, and many consider Python's relative purity in this regard a real advantage when it comes to writing clear, easily understandable code.

And Somewhat One of Performance

Voice recordings are useful at any point in time. If you want to save a lecture (or presentation) that you are attending, or record a voiceover for a project, the iPhone can be your solution. You don’t have to use an old tape recorder, or a standalone recorder. The iPhone’s fantastic technology records high quality voice recordings on demand, whenever you need it.

To get started, look for an application named “Voice Memos.” Most likely, this particular application is found in your Utilities category by default. Once you open it up, you are greeted by a large microphone, indicating you are in the correct application. When you want to start recording, simply tap on the large red button in the bottom left, and you are on your way to begin recording. What is important about recording voices on this application to the highest degree of quality, ensure that your meter in the bottom is within the middle range; with the pointer in the red zone, your recording will be awfully loud, while otherwise, it will be too quiet. Finished recording? Simply tap on the square button, and you have your recording.

What can you do with these recordings? Once you have finished recording, you are able to now share this recording through email or even in a text message; email it to yourself so you can save it on your computer, and listen to it later, or start editing it to put into a movie production, or text it to a friend for their needs.

In this tutorial we are going to take a look at how you work with strings in Python. Now, any language worth its salt will have a number of options for working with text and Python is probably one of the best to use when it comes to processing text.

If you are new to programming in general you may be wondering what a string is. In terms of programming, a string is classed as any sequence of characters you can type with your keyboard, and let’s face it, if you want your application to be of any use to yourself or other users then you need it to tell you what it’s doing or to prompt you for an action, and that is where strings come into play.

They are your applications way of communicating with the user. Without the ability to enter and display text or software would be pretty useless.

So, how would you create a string in Python? Take a look at the following code:

Tech Life in New York

City The Big Apple is home of two of the world?s largest stock market exchanges, the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. As a leading business center in the United States, New York has more Fortune 500 headquartered companies than any other city. Technology is blossoming in the Big Apple as major internet conglomerates like Google move their offices into ?telecom hotels? such as the 311,000 square feet office space downtown. As in any other city there are pros and cons of living in New York City. For instance, there is so much to do, it?s easy to get around with the transit system, it?s safe, convenient, and has plenty of job opportunities. On the other hand, it can be overwhelmingly expensive, overcrowded, a bit impersonal and fast paced. New Yorkers enjoy Central Park, multi cultural activities and food, theatre, film festivals, farmers markets, fashion and anything else they could possibly think of...it?s all there.
Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage, and those who manage what they do not understand. Archibald Putt
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Software developers near Albany have ample opportunities to meet like minded techie individuals, collaborate and expend their career choices by participating in Meet-Up Groups. The following is a list of Technology Groups in the area.
Fortune 500 and 1000 companies in New York that offer opportunities for Microsoft Team Foundation Server developers
Company Name City Industry Secondary Industry
NYSE Euronext, Inc. New York Financial Services Securities Agents and Brokers
Anderson Instrument Company Inc. Fultonville Manufacturing Tools, Hardware and Light Machinery
News Corporation New York Media and Entertainment Radio and Television Broadcasting
Philip Morris International Inc New York Manufacturing Manufacturing Other
Loews Corporation New York Travel, Recreation and Leisure Hotels, Motels and Lodging
The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America New York Financial Services Insurance and Risk Management
Jarden Corporation Rye Manufacturing Manufacturing Other
Ralph Lauren Corporation New York Retail Clothing and Shoes Stores
Icahn Enterprises, LP New York Financial Services Investment Banking and Venture Capital
Viacom Inc. New York Media and Entertainment Media and Entertainment Other
Omnicom Group Inc. New York Business Services Advertising, Marketing and PR
Henry Schein, Inc. Melville Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Medical Supplies and Equipment
Pfizer Incorporated New York Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Pharmaceuticals
Eastman Kodak Company Rochester Computers and Electronics Audio, Video and Photography
Assurant Inc. New York Business Services Data and Records Management
PepsiCo, Inc. Purchase Manufacturing Nonalcoholic Beverages
Foot Locker, Inc. New York Retail Department Stores
Barnes and Noble, Inc. New York Retail Sporting Goods, Hobby, Book, and Music Stores
Alcoa New York Manufacturing Metals Manufacturing
The Estee Lauder Companies Inc. New York Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Personal Health Care Products
Avon Products, Inc. New York Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Personal Health Care Products
The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation New York Financial Services Banks
Marsh and McLennan Companies New York Financial Services Insurance and Risk Management
Corning Incorporated Corning Manufacturing Concrete, Glass, and Building Materials
CBS Corporation New York Media and Entertainment Radio and Television Broadcasting
Bristol Myers Squibb Company New York Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Biotechnology
Citigroup Incorporated New York Financial Services Banks
Goldman Sachs New York Financial Services Personal Financial Planning and Private Banking
American International Group (AIG) New York Financial Services Insurance and Risk Management
Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. New York Business Services Advertising, Marketing and PR
BlackRock, Inc. New York Financial Services Securities Agents and Brokers
MetLife Inc. New York Financial Services Insurance and Risk Management
Consolidated Edison Company Of New York, Inc. New York Energy and Utilities Gas and Electric Utilities
Time Warner Cable New York Telecommunications Cable Television Providers
Morgan Stanley New York Financial Services Investment Banking and Venture Capital
American Express Company New York Financial Services Credit Cards and Related Services
International Business Machines Corporation Armonk Computers and Electronics Computers, Parts and Repair
TIAA-CREF New York Financial Services Securities Agents and Brokers
JPMorgan Chase and Co. New York Financial Services Investment Banking and Venture Capital
The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. New York Media and Entertainment Newspapers, Books and Periodicals
L-3 Communications Inc. New York Manufacturing Aerospace and Defense
Colgate-Palmolive Company New York Consumer Services Personal Care
New York Life Insurance Company New York Financial Services Insurance and Risk Management
Time Warner Inc. New York Media and Entertainment Media and Entertainment Other
Cablevision Systems Corp. Bethpage Media and Entertainment Radio and Television Broadcasting
CA Technologies, Inc. Islandia Software and Internet Software
Verizon Communications Inc. New York Telecommunications Telephone Service Providers and Carriers
Hess Corporation New York Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries

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A successful career as a software developer or other IT professional requires a solid understanding of software development processes, design patterns, enterprise application architectures, web services, security, networking and much more. The progression from novice to expert can be a daunting endeavor; this is especially true when traversing the learning curve without expert guidance. A common experience is that too much time and money is wasted on a career plan or application due to misinformation.

The Hartmann Software Group understands these issues and addresses them and others during any training engagement. Although no IT educational institution can guarantee career or application development success, HSG can get you closer to your goals at a far faster rate than self paced learning and, arguably, than the competition. Here are the reasons why we are so successful at teaching:

  • Learn from the experts.
    1. We have provided software development and other IT related training to many major corporations in New York since 2002.
    2. Our educators have years of consulting and training experience; moreover, we require each trainer to have cross-discipline expertise i.e. be Java and .NET experts so that you get a broad understanding of how industry wide experts work and think.
  • Discover tips and tricks about Microsoft Team Foundation Server programming
  • Get your questions answered by easy to follow, organized Microsoft Team Foundation Server experts
  • Get up to speed with vital Microsoft Team Foundation Server programming tools
  • Save on travel expenses by learning right from your desk or home office. Enroll in an online instructor led class. Nearly all of our classes are offered in this way.
  • Prepare to hit the ground running for a new job or a new position
  • See the big picture and have the instructor fill in the gaps
  • We teach with sophisticated learning tools and provide excellent supporting course material
  • Books and course material are provided in advance
  • Get a book of your choice from the HSG Store as a gift from us when you register for a class
  • Gain a lot of practical skills in a short amount of time
  • We teach what we know…software
  • We care…
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