From Dr. Michael Birnbaum:

Dear Bryan:

I think you will be happy to learn that the statue of Mance Lipscomb 
has been completed and it has been installed in “Mance Lipscomb Park” 
in Navasota, Texas.

Here are some links from which you can see something of the dedication:

Here is a link to a YouTube video showing the unveiling and dedication 
of the Mance Lipscomb statue by sculptor, Sid Henderson.

As you can see, the sculpture looks wonderful;  it was well received 
by the Lipscomb family and by the Blues fest organization.  Sid is the 
young man who unveils the sculpture.

Here is a link to the local newspaper’s article on the unveiling:

I was very happy to see this project brought to successful 
completion.  Many people had to come together to rename the park, to 
agree to the plan, to raise the funds, and to see it through to 
completion.  We had to place our trust in a young artist to be able to 
complete this project successfully and he came through for us, working 
many long days to see that the bronze was properly cast, welded to 
reassemble the pieces, and patina finished.  The work was delivered on 
time so that the dedication happened on the morning of the first day 
of the annual Navasota Blues fest.  Some of the Lipscombs came from 
Houston and Dallas to attend the dedication, and of course, there were 
some people from the West coast and East coast who were there.  
Mance’s surviving son, John, is the man wearing the white hat, who 
also has quite a strong resemblance to Mance. He spoke at the 
dedication, as did one of Mance’s grandsons, Jimmy. The Lipscombs were 
very happy with the sculpture and the dedication.  I think this work 
will outlive those of us who remember Mance and help keep alive his 
history for those who come after us.

Best wishes,

Michael Birnbaum, PhD
Professor of Psychology and
Director,Decision Research Center, Fullerton
Fullerton, CA 92834-6846


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MVP Chalermvong and his session - ASP.NET Performance Up!

Learning how to work with ASP.NET Web Forms is the other thing of “New Things Learned in the Labor Camp”… I’ve avoided confronting ASP.NET “classic” directly for years. Instead, I made the right decision to learn things about Web programming and Web design that Microsoft notoriously undervalued in its professional communication for years until the rise of Scott Guthrie from ASP.NET “classic” to ASP.NET MVC.

Sadly, there is a job market full of IT shops that are deeply invested (often emotionally invested) in ASP.NET “1.9”—the way of seeing the Web through the Microsoft looking glass just before ASP.NET 2.0 was released in 2005.

For years I’ve “run away” from confronting ASP.NET Web Forms directly. The following interview questions I’ve slapped together “finally” engage—directly. By the way to show that I’m super serious about this matter, I’ve literally spent hours over about two weeks building samples for ASP.NET for Web Forms in my studio.

What are ASP.NET Web Forms?

ASP.NET Web Forms is a technology that breaks down a plain-old HTTP Request into a series of clearly defined events (classified broadly under initialization, load and render)—these events describe the “life cycle” of a familiar model, the data-entry form in a Web page. ASP.NET is based on the event-driven programming paradigm made popular and traditional by Microsoft in the 1990s.

What is a ‘Post Back’?

The ‘Post Back’ is the concept developed by Microsoft that stands between the post HTTP verb and the first event recognized by an ASP.NET Page. Typically, the Page.IsPostBack Boolean is checked in the Page.OnLoad event handler. When Page.IsPostBack == false then the get HTTP verb is the request. Microsoft has defined a conventional Jscript function, __doPostBack(), that invokes the ‘Post Back.’ ASP.NET Web Forms seem crude and extravagant in the 21st century when a page-level post action is regarded as expensive and disruptive (ASP.NET AJAX was supposed to remedy this).

Why do ASP.NET controls require a parent form?

Without a parent form element, the ‘Post Back’ concept is not implemented. Conventional hidden fields in the form store event metadata (__EVENTTARGET, __EVENTARGUMENT, __VIEWSTATE).

See also:TRULY Understanding ViewState

What is the AutoPostBack property?

The AutoPostBack property is a Boolean that is apparently defined independently and conventionally in the System.Web.UI.WebControls.ListControl, System.Web.UI.WebControls.CheckBox and System.Web.UI.WebControls.TextBox. When AutoPostBack == true an event associated with these controls (select, check, blur) will cause a Post Back.

See also:
System.Web.UI.PostBackOptions and System.Web.UI.Page.AutoPostBackControl.

super smart msft peeps

What is a Cross-Page Post Back?

By default, an ASP.NET page “posts back” to itself (frequently). A Cross-Page Post Back declares that one Web Form should post to another Web Form—not back to itself. Input captured in the posting page can be captured in the receiving page via the Page.PreviousPage property.

Tip: The Page.IsCrossPagePostBack property is always null. During a cross page Post Back Page.PreviousPage.IsCrossPagePostBack will be true.

See also:

What is a Server Transfer?

An ASP.NET Server Transfer allows a Page executing on the Server to Transfer execution to another Page. It can be thought of as a call to another procedure from the currently executing procedure. In terms of a POCO class, a Server Transfer is a method call in a procedure of one class with a member from another class—the catch is that no arguments can be passed in the method call. After a Server Transfer, the new page running has access to all of the Request, Session and Application-scope data in the old page. Importantly, there is a Page.PreviousPage property which can be used with FindControl() to locate controls on the old page.

According to Microsoft MVP Karl Moore, “So, in brief: Response.Redirect simply tells the browser to visit another page. Server.Transfer helps reduce server requests, keeps the URL the same and, with a little bug-bashing, allows you to transfer the query string and form variables. …Don’t confuse Server.Transfer with Server.Execute, which executes the page and returns the results. It was useful in the past, but, with ASP.NET, it’s been replaced with fresher methods of development. Ignore it.”

See also:ASP.NET Server.Transfer Method

What is a Master Page?

The ASP.NET Master helps keep Web Forms DRY. They share visual elements among several ASP.NET pages providing the “consistent look and feel” Web designers expect. ASP.NET Master pages also centralize HTML page “meta” information, much of the angle-bracketed ceremony that make Web page markup noisy.

How does a Master Page affect the Control.FindControl function?

The ASP.NET Master adds one or more ContentPlaceHolder controls to the visual tree. These in turn demand Content controls, which implement INamingContainer—a “naming container” affects the ID attributes of child controls “inside” the container. So: a control named foo inside a naming container, bar, can be located by Control.FindControl("bar$foo") where Control would be an instance of the Master page in our example.

The ASP.NET Dream Team

How do Web Forms handle Validation?

ASP.NET handles Validation with PostBack-dependent server controls. These server controls share a ControlToValidate property, pointing to the input-related server control to Validate. There are validation controls for marking input as required, checking input for a data type, testing input with a Regular Expression and testing input with custom code.

One little annoyance: custom validators don’t work with blank input—so they must be paired with the validation control for marking input as required (RequiredFieldValidator).

What are Validation groups?

Validation groups allow more than one “validation context” to exist in a Web Form. For example, a layout with a GridView might have an EditItemTemplate with one Validation Group for editing while another form used for inserting new rows into the grid will have another Validation Group. Validation groups are declared with the ValidationGroup property.

What is a “Partial Page Update”?

The “Partial Page Update” is made possible with the UpdatePanel and the ScriptManager, which is the heart of ASP.NET AJAX. This extension to ASP.NET introduced in version 2.0 dramatically reduces the need to do the “classic” PostBack by implementing the “asynchronous PostBack” a.k.a. the “Partial Page Update.”

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What I notice about ASP.NET HttpContext:

  • The ApplicationInstance property has some of the events that have seemed to me to appear from nowhere in Global.asax.cs—by the way, Application_Start is not there—what is there are a bunch of authentication events (leading me quite ‘naturally’ to the subject of authentication).
  • For the Items collection, the MSDN documentation explains that the collection “…can be used to organize and share data between an IHttpModule interface and an IHttpHandler interface during an HTTP request…” My opinion: this collection is meant to be used for Module programming—not for passing object-boxed data between pages (especially when these data can be accessed with the Page.PreviousPage property).
  • The Profile property sitting in HTTP Context helps me distinguish between Profiles and Membership—it’s the Membership processes that result in User Profile data.
  • The Cache property refers to the second type of out-of-the-box ASP.NET caching, application data caching (output caching, by the way, is the first). Based on my current level of experience with the innards of ASP.NET I assume that the Cache property is still useful when more advanced distributed caching solutions, like Velocity, are in use.

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