June Meeting: Better Background Tasks using Serverless Functions and SignalR

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, June 25th, at 6:00 PM in the Redwood Conference Room of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Web applications commonly need to run background tasks. The problem is that we want to run them outside of the web application while still providing feedback about their execution. Using a combination of serverless functions for processing and SignalR for communication, we can build web applications that can reliably run complex tasks while still providing real-time feedback to the user. This session will introduce both serverless functions and SignalR, and we will show how you can create a simple framework for your background tasks to use in all cloud providers.

The meeting presenter is Chris Dix.

Chris Dix is the CEO and Chief Developer at Thoughtpost. Chris has over 20 years of software development experience and has partnered with several MSPs to develop custom Connectwise integrations. A former Microsoft MVP, Chris has contributed to books and articles and spoken at many national industry conferences. At Thoughtpost, Chris leads the development of their messaging platform for MSPs, which provides deep integration support for Connectwise, Slack, and Microsoft Teams.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts, Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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January Meeting: Design for Enterprise Developers

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, January 22nd, at 6:00 PM in the Redwood Conference Room of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Any successful product begins with great design, and the field of design and user experience (UX) continue to get more attention. But how does this apply to enterprise development? If you have a designer or team of designers, how can you ensure you are working with them in the best way? What if your organization doesn’t have any designers? In this talk, we will discuss an overview of the design/UX landscape, tips for working design into your current build process, and finally some advice on how to build your design expertise.

The meeting presenter is Niel Sutton.

Niel Sutton is a User Experience (UX) Architect Manager in Microsoft Services. While in college, he was an intern at a startup where his naïve loyalty to Linux and penguins nearly got in the way of an exciting opportunity to work at Microsoft. Niel began his career answering support calls for MFC and C++. He never imagined that years later he would have a role leading UX Architects around the world and helping customers navigate digital transformation.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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August Meeting: Ethereum and the Azure Blockchain Workshop

Join Signature Consultants and us on August 28th, at 6:00 PM in the Redwood Conference Room (formerly named MPR or the Multi-Purpose Room) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Blockchain, Ethereum, Smart Contracts, what are they? How do they work? How can I leverage them for my business? In this session, we will begin to answer these questions. We will discuss what a blockchain is. We will dive a little deeper into one of the popular blockchain frameworks, Ethereum. We will talk about what a Smart Contract is and how it fits into this ecosystem. Finally, we have a demonstration of the Azure Blockchain Workshop and some sample smart contracts.

The meeting presenter is Jason Petrin.

Jason Petrin is a Consultant at Cardinal Solutions Group, where he works with different clients to build their products in the cloud. Jason has been working as a consultant for over a decade in the Charlotte area and has focused on creating cloud solutions for the past eight years.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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June Meeting: Multi-paradigm for the win-Secrets to becoming a better programmer

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, June 26th, at 6:00 PM in the Redwood Conference Room (formerly named MPR or the Multi-Purpose Room) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Are you a polyglot programmer who uses multiple languages on a single project? Are you ready to take this practice to the next level to increase productivity, code correctness, maintenance and, in some cases, performance? If yes, then this session is for you!

In this session, we will discuss and demonstrate how multi-paradigm programming is even more potent than polyglot programming. Most mainstream programming languages support multiple programming paradigms (object-oriented, generic, functional, etc.), yet many developers confine themselves to a single paradigm. Whether using single or multiple languages, I will show you how to maximize potential by adopting multi-paradigm programming.

The key to better programs is knowing which languages to choose for the designed effect and how to combine them correctly for the desired outcome. For example, although object-oriented programming paradigms are widely used, the applications and design practices for functional programming may provide improved solutions to your architecture. After this session, you will walk away with the ability to select which paradigm is a better fit given a domain or sub-domain, and most importantly, you will learn the skills to make different paradigms coexist to create highly modular, extensible, and loosely coupled components. The goal of this session is not to claim that one paradigm is better than the other, but rather to introduce another way of thinking about programming to become a better developer.

The meeting presenter is Riccardo Terrell.

Riccardo Terrell is a seasoned software engineer and Microsoft MVP who is passionate about functional programming. He is active in the .NET community and the author of “Functional Concurrency in .NET,” which features how to develop highly-scalable systems in F# & C#. Riccardo believes in polyglot programming as a mechanism for finding the right tool for the job. You can read his blog at www.rickyterrell.com and follow him on Twitter at @TRikace.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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January Meeting: Website Security 101 – The Really Easy Stuff

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, January 23rd, at 6:00 PM in the Redwood Conference Room (formerly named MPR or the Multi-Purpose Room) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Web developers know security is crucial, but the topic of security is not fun or exciting and can be daunting to understand. The issues discussed in this presentation are critical to protecting all websites. The topics covered will be explained and demonstrated in an easy to follow format that will be simple to implement when you get back to your office.

The meeting presenter is Sean Rhone.

Sean Rhone has over 20 years of IT experience and has been developing applications using the Microsoft stack since Visual Basic 4.0. He has worked in small start-ups as well as Fortune 1000 companies and has, in one way or another, been around the healthcare field for most of his adult life.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

Downloads: Slides

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October Meeting: Wired to Learn – Tactics for Being a Better Learner

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, October 24, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Learning is an active process. It’s something in which you take part, not something that “just happens” to you. As with anything that requires limited resources, there are ways you can get a more significant return on your investment. This session will convey specific tactics that individuals can employ to become more efficient at learning and retaining information — techniques gleaned from disciplines like psychology, cognitive science, machine learning, physics, forensics, and even metallurgy.

The meeting presenter is Jim Christopher.

Jim Christopher has over 20 years of professional software development experience in aerospace, defense, education, gaming, communications, and IT. He has an MA in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Arizona, where he researched perception, learning, memory, and sensory prosthesis. Jim is a Director of Technology Curriculum at Pluralsight, curating Data Professional and Developer content. He likes to crochet, walk his dog, and build tiny houses. Learn more about Jim at www.beefycode.com or follow him on Twitter @beefarino.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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May Meeting: Authentication in Angular

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, May 23, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Most modern applications require security. However, single page applications (SPAs) introduce unique challenges when it comes to authentication. In general, traditional session-based authentication isn’t a good fit for stateless SPAs. A better approach is to use OAuth tokens provided by a security token service. In this talk, we are going to look at how to build Angular applications that use token-based authentication. Our security token service will be running IdentityServer, an OpenID Connect provider and OAuth 2.0 server framework for ASP.NET.

The meeting presenter is Mark Wilson.

Software craftsman, consultant and agile .NET/JavaScript web developer. User group leader and event planner. A loving husband, dog foster, and Disney aficionado.

Mark specializes in cloud computing and web application development. He is a Senior Developer at Logical Advantage in Charlotte, NC.

Mark lives with his wife and a house full of dogs, most of them being foster dogs. Hobbies include helping his wife with her non-profit animal rescue, promoting the development community, and everything Disney. Learn more about Mark at www.DeveloperInfra.com or follow him on Twitter @DeveloperInfra.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants started in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. As a result of these efforts Signature has been recognized as one of the best staffing companies to work (over the last seven years by Staffing Analyst International). Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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February Meeting: Code Generation with Roslyn

Join Signature Consultants and us on Tuesday, February 28, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Business logic is tough. The rules are complex, sometimes contradicting each other, and they change a lot. All the things that we hate about business logic are also the reasons most businesses are in business. We need to accommodate these complexities, adapt to these changes and do it quickly, or our favorite company may not stay in business. Most code generation strategies focus on generating interfaces or proxies. Simple code with little logic, but imagine if we could automate creating some of the most complex logic found in most applications. Instead of hand writing complex business rules that are going to change on the whim of a competitor or the wish of a client or a shift in the market, we can build systems that will allow us to describe the business rules and enable the computer to write code. Sounds like science fiction, but this real.

In this presentation we will:

  • see an example of structuring business logic in database tables
  • what it would look like to pull that structured logic back into the code
  • generate code to implement the logic described in the database using the power of Roslyn

This presentation is based on material from the recently published book by Nick that covers these details in depth http://www.apress.com/la/book/9781484222102

The meeting presenter is Nick Harrison.

Nick a software consultant living in Columbia, South Carolina. He has done full stack development on projects ranging from full-featured Loan Origination Systems for prominent mortgage lenders to rapid prototypes for small start-ups. He has experience with full lifecycle development from initial inception through post deployment support.

Nick published articles and books on a broad range of technical topics including MVC, T4, Roslyn, Software Metrics, Design Patterns, Web Design. You can follow him on Twitter @Neh123us, where he also announces his blog posts, published articles, and speaking engagements.

The meeting sponsor is Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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July Meeting: Mind Blowing Internet of Things (IoT) Projects

Join us and Signature Consultants on Tuesday, July 26, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. We live in an exciting time where more and more everyday item “things” are becoming smart! “Things” have sensors and can communicate to other “things” and can provide control to more “things”. The Internet of Things, IoT, is upon us in a huge way and makers are rapidly inventing cool gadgets every day.

See Dan’s latest IoT projects on Microsoft’s Windows 10 IoT Core running on the Rasberry Pi and connecting to services in Azure. He is using Bluetooth Beacons and Azure Machine Learning to predict the health of this pets. He is also using the Alexa Skills Kit API for Amazon Echo to send messages to a Particle Photon microcontroller (Wi-Fi) to make a servo controlled hand wave to the audience based on natural speech commands.

The meeting presenter is Dan Thyer.

Dan is co-founder and CTO of Logical Advantage, www.logicaladvantage.com. Logical Advantage has successfully delivered software and technology solutions for 12 years and was recently awarded an IT-oLogy Blue Diamond award for Human Capital Development. Dan is president of the Charlotte Internet of Things (IoT) and the Logical Advantage Tech Talks user groups and is on the steering committee of the NC Regional Internet of Things and the Enterprise Developers Guild. Dan is passionate about building cool stuff, writing articles, having fun with technology and talking about it in user groups. Dan’s articles and videos have accumulated over half a million views and Microsoft Channel 9 has featured Dan’s projects 8 times! He was recently awarded Microsoft’s Most Valuable Professional award for his engagement in the community.

The meeting is sponsored by Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants, and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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May Meeting: Do you have syrup with your Full Stack of Pancakes?

Join us and Signature Consultants on Tuesday, May 24, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. A revolution is at hand. The development world is changing everyday it seems and you are the synergy of those changes.

  • New frameworks popping up
  • New NuGet packages showing up
  • Open-Source projects staying open and offering business licensing
  • Microsoft coming into the Open-Source world
  • JavaScript is a norm for back end development
  • NoSQL databases are now accepted
  • Content Management Systems are more and more a necessity
  • Big Data science brings us into a new world of analytics
  • Platforms we develop for are not just computers , tablets, and phones
  • And the list goes on…

The technologist we were a year ago are not the technologist we are today and will not be the technologist we are tomorrow. Are you ready for your stack to change? Is your tool belt large enough to grow? Do you have what it takes to add that special sauce to your current and next project?

Come join us and learn more where we see our technology going and break out into small groups to pick the brains of experts like yourselves. Hear Chris Sigmon shares almost 20 years of changes to the full stack and full cycle of development and the future of development.

The meeting presenter is Chris Sigmon.

Chris Sigmon is a Solution Architect for Hedgehog, a full software and design firm with primary focus on Content Managment Systems for fortune 100 companies. With over 20 years in technology, developing and managing cutting-edge eCommerce and multi-system technologies with experience in  system architecture, designing, and developing small business applications and enterprise solutions, Chris’ primary desire to assist companies leverage their internal systems via a unified framework customized for their success. He has a unique ability to translate the big picture into functional, feasible, applicable solution. As a huge fan of open source technologies such as ServiceStack, multiple JavaScript frameworks and other NET technology, he is always learning new technologies.

The meeting is sponsored by Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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November Meeting: From Difficult to Delighted

Join us and Signature Consultants on Tuesday, November 24, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Do you ever feel like your customers or team members are tough to work with? In this session we will talk about how to get them to hear your point of view; how to find out what they really want (hint: It’s NOT what they are demanding); and how to get them to be your advocate instead of your enemy. You’ll leave the session with some new ideas and an action plan to connect with even the most challenging team members or clients.

The meeting presenter is Tom Cooper.

Tom Cooper has spent more than 20 years as a hands-on technologist. During those years, he says he made just about every mistake possible when working with difficult customers. Over the last several years, Tom has been working with his clients to help them communicate, delegate, manage conflict and plan.

The meeting is sponsored by Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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September Meeting: Azure App Service – Building Enterprise Apps in the Cloud

Join us and Signature Consultants on Tuesday, September 22, at 6:00 PM in the Multi-Purpose Room (MPR) of the Microsoft Charlotte Office. Azure App Service is a one-of-a kind solution that brings together the tools you need for building enterprise-ready apps around a common development, management and billing model. You can choose from a rich ecosystem of pre-built apps and API services as well as a unified set of enterprise capabilities including mobile backend services, turnkey connectivity to SaaS and enterprise systems, and workflow-based creation of business processes.

Azure App Service frees developers to focus on delivering great business value instead of needing to worry about repetitive tasks such as stitching disparate data sources together or dealing with operational and compliance overhead. This unified approach lets you take full advantage of the service while helping you meet your company’s concerns about security, reliability, and scalability.

In this session, we will create an enterprise class web application and deploy it using Azure App Service. Once deployed, we will explore extending our application by integrating third party services and automating business processes.

The meeting presenter is Richard Taylor.

Richard is an experienced, dedicated, detailed-oriented technology and management professional with a career reflecting strong leadership qualifications coupled with “hands on” technology experience. Knowledgeable in the design, development, implementation, support, and management of computer systems. Focused on achieving results while utilizing advanced technologies and business solutions to meet a variety of needs. You can read his blog at www.rightincode.com and follow him on Twitter at @rightincode.

The meeting is sponsored by Signature Consultants.

Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: Provide our clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. At Signature Consultants, it’s not just about the bottom line; it’s about the people. We focus on the relationships we have with our clients, consultants and candidates. Our motto, “Getting IT Right,” is reflected in every aspect of our company – it guides our decisions and actions and ensures that our consultants and clients always come first. Learn more at www.sigconsult.com.

Please RSVP so we know how much food to order.

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