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About me

Brian Holmgård Kristensen

Hi, I'm Brian. I'm a Danish guy primarily working with ASP.NET e-commerce solutions using Microsoft Commerce Server.

I'm co-founder and core-member of Aarhus .NET Usergroup (ANUG), which is a offline community for .NET developers in Denmark.

You can visit my View Brian Holmgård Kristensen's profile on LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter @brianh_dk. Also please feel free to contact me via e-mail Send me an e-mail.

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Nu som deltager i dansk udvikler konkurrence
Very cool Commerce Server training with Max Akbar
Planning Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification
Attending TechEd Developers Barcelona 2007
A new blogger is in town

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The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.

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Follow me on Twitter @brianh_dk
 Monday, 22 September 2008

(In English: I've signed up for a contest on a Danish community site for developers, where you have to learn about a new technology and write blogposts about your experience with that. One of the requirements for this contest is that all written material have to be in Danish. Sorry.)

Jeg har været medlem på det danske udviklersite ActiveDeveloper.dk siden det dengang hed Active Server Pages og hvor det var Dennis Knappe som stod i spidsen for sitet. Jeg benytter mig stadig af ActiveDeveloper.dk, dog sjældent til at stille spørgsmål, og desværre sjældent til at besvare på andres spørgsmål. Til gengæld fungerer sitet for mig som en indgangsportal til flere af de danske bloggere som jeg jævnligt følger med i, samt til at opfange de events mv. som der arrangeres fra tid til anden, herunder Geek-Dinners. ActiveDeveloper.dk bliver i dag styret af en gut som jeg ved flere lejligheder har haft chancen for at møde, nemlig Jesper Blad Jensen aka Deldy.

Konkurrencen i korte træk...

Jesper har sammen med Daniel Mellgaard Frost fra Microsoft sat en konkurrence sammen, hvor det gælder om at sætte sig ind i en ny selvvalgt teknologi inden for en given tidshorisont. Alt i mens skal man blogge om sine daglige oplevelser med denne nye teknologi, og i slutperioden af konkurrencen skal man skrive en artikel hvor man sammenfatter hele oplevelsen. Ham/hende som har leveret det bedste arbejde kan vælge mellem en række præmier udlovet af Microsoft.

Kort om mig

Mit navn er Brian Holmgård Kristensen. Jeg blev uddannet datamatiker fra Skive i 2005, og har siden bl.a. arbejdet som ERP-udvikler (Microsoft Dynamics AX) hos en virksomhed i Viborg. Siden maj 2007 har jeg dog arbejdet som .NET udvikler i en virksomhed der hedder Vertica, der ligger inde midt i Århus. Jeg har beskæftiget mig med udvikling i en del år efterhånden, med fokus på web-udvikling. Jeg er medstifter af Århus .NET UserGroup (www.anug.dk), hvor jeg stadig er en aktiv del af kernegruppen, og har også haft æren af at lave en både en præsentation om ASP.NET samt en workshop. Hvis du vil vide lidt mere om hvem jeg er, kan du læse min introduktions-post jeg skrev sidste år da jeg oprettede bloggen, eller besøge min LinkedIn-profil - og du er selvfølgelig også velkommen til at kontakte mig direkte.

Hvad deltager jeg med

Jeg vil gerne i gang med at arbejde med Umbraco. I første omgang bliver det at forstå hele pakken der følger med Umbraco, det være sig installation, konfiguration, maskineriet, plug-ins osv. Det næste for mig vil være hvordan jeg bygger ovenpå Umbraco løsningen – og med at bygge ovenpå mener jeg at anvende de teknologier og værktøjer som jeg normalt sidder med i min arbejdsdag; unit-testing, Inversion of Control, MVP, etc.. – f.eks. sådan at jeg kan integrere mine eCommerce løsninger med Umbraco (med anvendelse af f.eks. Microsoft Commerce Server nedenunder).

Hvorfor jeg deltager...

... fordi jeg synes det er et brand-godt initiativ som jeg gerne vil støtte op omkring, og fordi jeg rigtig gerne vil lære at anvende Umbraco som CMS, da det er et produkt vi overvejer at bruge professionelt på min arbejdsplads, samt i mit fritidsfirma www.yourhost.dk.

Dette er blot min lille introduktionspost til konkurrencen - løbende vil der selvfølgelig komme mange flere post, as we go by.

Posted on Monday, 22 September 2008 14:23:10 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)
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 Thursday, 06 September 2007

My first experience with Microsoft Commerce Server was in May 2007 when I started working at Vertica. At that point I had absolutely no clue of what Commerce Server could leverage as a standard eCommerce platform. The first few weeks basically went by doing training based on some internal training material and the documentation on MSDN for Commerce Server. Soon after that I became team member on a Commerce Server project for one of our customers. Since then my work has been more or less exclusively to this project which have been a incredible educational experience for me.

Moving on to my point it had been planned for some months that we should have Max Akbar, former Program Manager for the Microsoft Commerce Server Team, come to our company location in Aarhus and provide us some technical training on Commerce Server. At that time I had only read some of Max' posts about Commerce Server but honestly I did not knew much about who he was or what he had do with the Commerce Server product. But as I got to learn more about Commerce Server and began digging more and more into the technical aspects of the product, in purpose of extending and modifying it to our customer needs, Max' name and posts appeared more frequently on the web-sites I came along. Also he had posted some very useful articles on his blog that really helped me a lot doing the development. So it was very great news that he would come to our company, and I was really looking forward to meet him and none the less learn from him.

So this week we had Max coming all the way from California, USA to Aarhus, Denmark to spend a couple of days with us giving in-house training on the Commerce Server 2007 product. Although Max suffered a bit jetlag from his flight there were no way to tell it because he really pulled off some very intensive training and the level of expertise was just stunning! The experience and in-depth knowledge with the Commerce Server product was absolutely remarkable. I really enjoyed attending the course with Max and it fully lived up to my expectations - and then some.

This blog post doesn't cover all the topics that we went through the training with Max, but hopefully it gives a resume of what went on. The first day we got around talking about the installation, architecture and security stuff of Commerce Server as well as giving us some insight on some of the work he had been doing at Microsoft and some of the large scale enterprise solutions he have been a part of. It was very exciting to hear about all that. The second day we learned a lot about the CSS - Commerce Server Staging on how to easily deploy Commerce Server business data and content between different environments. It was very cool to learn about because the CSS part of Commerce Server is one thing that I have none on-hands experience with nor much knowledge about. We also got through the Catalog-, Profiles- and Marketing systems which gave me some very good insight on how this is implemented in the product and how to best interact with the systems. After the second day of training most of us from Vertica went out with Max to grap a beer on Kafé Komma and later we all went to eat on a really good restaurant. The third and last day of the training was primarily focused on integration, extending the Orders system and building custom pipelines.

For me it was really cool to show Max some of the stuff that I have been working on. Especially on how I have extended the Payment- and Shipping Methods using the standard Profile System and how I integrated this into the Customer and Orders Manager application with pretty much no modification to the application at all. I'm proud to say that Max found the stuff I did very cool. I might write a post about it some day.

Also pretty cool was that Max gave us some of the custom tools that he has developed for his various Commerce Server solutions and I'm absolutely sure that they will come in pretty handy in our solutions as well. Max is a really nice guy and besides all the training he did we also had a lot of fun during the training days. I'm really glad to met Max and hopefully I'll come across him again some day.

I'm sorry for any bad English, bad grammar or misspelling. The clock is getting pretty late and I'm not even done packing all my stuff yet. The thing is that we are all leaving very early in the morning (4.15 AM to be exact) as we are going with the train from Aarhus to the Copenhagen Airport from where we are flying to Edinburgh. Vertica has arranged a company trip throughout the weekend to Scotland which I'm really looking forward to.

Posted on Thursday, 06 September 2007 21:30:35 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)
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 Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Today I have been planning my upcoming education strategy for the rest of the year. I'm going for the MCTS: .NET Framework 2.0 Web Applications certification which includes two exams:

  1. Exam 70–536: TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Application Development Foundation
  2. Exam 70–528: TS: Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 - Web-Based Client Development

The books have already been ordered by my employer and I have set the estimated dates for the exams. My goal is to complete the first exam by week 42 (October) and complete the next exam by week 49 (December).

Announcing it here on my blog and declaring a specific timeframe is an intentional strategy to give myself some degree of pressure that should keep me focused on completing it in time.

This will be my first certification to come so I'm obviously very excited about all this. Last year I completed a x-masterclass Axapta 3.0 System Development course and was supposed to take a certification in Dynamics AX 4.0 Development, but such particular certification was not available at that time. And still isn't - at least what I know of.

It is my plan to achieve the Microsoft Certified Professional Developer (MCPD) Web Developer certification - although this will properly not happen before Q1/2008. After that I think that it would be clever to focus on some SQL Server 2005 aimed certifications.

My ultimate goal would be to become a Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA) one day. It was my colleague Søren who introduced me to this today, but it seems to be a hard thing to accomplish. I believe such a certification will be very valuable.

So - now there is really nothing else to it, than open the books and start reading...

Posted on Tuesday, 28 August 2007 19:50:41 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)
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 Thursday, 09 August 2007

Last week I got great news that I am going to attend the TechEd Developers conference in Barcelona.

It was Søren who told me the news about TechEd and I will have a lot to live up to as he did a large scale cover of his attendance at TechEd in 2006.

The TechEd will span five days with hopefully hardcore technical subjects and I am obviously very excited as this will be my first TechEd. I can't wait to hear about all the cool new technologies out there.

I have done a quick scan of the Technical Tracks and I think that I will be focusing on new language and framework features including LINQ, C# 3.0 and som web-development topics such as AJAX and Silverlight.

I have wrote a post on ActiveDeveloper regarding my trip as it could be cool to know who else will be attending the conference.

So please feel free to contact me if you are going to the TechEd Developers, Barcelona 2007 - it could be cool to arrange something together.

You should of course also stay tuned on this blog around 5th to 9th November (the actual dates for the conference in Barcelona) as I promise to write daily posts about the sessions I will attend and of course my generel experiences with TechEd.

Posted on Thursday, 09 August 2007 18:30:39 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)
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 Saturday, 04 August 2007

As the title says this is my first blog on the web, therefore I think it would be appropriate to give myself some kind of introduction.

My name is Brian, and I live in Aarhus, Denmark. My full time job is working as .NET developer at Vertica A/S implementing large scale eCommerce solutions with Microsoft Commerce Server. Besides working at Vertica, I have a small IT-business called Yourhost together with my friend Peter, on which we spend a lot of our spare time. Yourhost offers hosting services, customized web-solutions, and other products and services.

I finished my education in November 2005 as Datamatician at the IT College in Skive. After that I got employed as a Microsoft Dynamics AX developer in a company called MW data, where I worked until May 2007. After that I started at Vertica. Here is a link to my LinkedIn profile, if you want to read more on this :)

The main focus on this blog will be about .NET technology and naturally other subjects I will come across in my professional life, although unrelated things probably also will be mentioned once in a while.

I will keep the blog-writing in English - the reason why is that I want to distribute it to as many people as possible, but also to improve my own language skills – I have used English as long as I remember, but mainly for reading and understanding - not so much writing and speaking in the latest years – so I want to focus on improving this (of course the blog properly will not improve the speaking part that much).

Thanks for reading this very first post - hopefully there will be a lot more to come :)

Posted on Saturday, 04 August 2007 13:03:39 (Romance Standard Time, UTC+01:00)
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