Collage of things that occurred on the Bald Bearded Builder stream on Twitch.

Live-Coding to Learn, Share and Encourage

"Start Streaming." Two simple words. They seemed so innocent. How could I know that a small button with those words would bring such a large change to my life?

Who in the world would want to watch someone write code? Good question. But nearly two years ago I found myself watching Jeffrey Fritz wearing a pirate hat, playing sound bytes from "Dude, Where's My Car," and yes, writing C# on Twitch. The community he had built was welcoming and supportive and his approach of pair-programming with viewers while injecting humor really resonated with me.

At the time, I had been developing with C# for nearly 20 years, and had been leading a team of developers for 10 of those, but had never taken the time to attend a meet-up or conference. This was my first step into a developer community outside of my workplace and I was hooked.

I quickly became active in several technology Twitch streams and was sold on this medium for teaching and supporting developers. While I had supported and taught teams within my organization, I saw live-coding as a platform to positively impact even more people.

So finally, one afternoon in February, I pressed that small button with those now infamous words; "Start Streaming."

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Using Apollo to Query GraphQL from Node.js

Using Apollo to Query GraphQL from Node.js

It's a common scenario—you built a quick prototype, it worked great, and now management wants it live yesterday. Maybe you were accessing a third-party GraphQL endpoint and now you're in a rush to get something out the door. One of your roadblocks? That endpoint doesn't provide CORS headers. No more calling it directly from your frontend JavaScript app.

Do you need to create an Express app with routes for each data set you need? No way! In this tutorial, we will use the Apollo client library within a Node.js Express app to provide a middleman to your third-party endpoint, without the need to rewrite your GraphQL queries and mutations.

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Sentiment Analysis With Opentok and Azure Face API

I See What You're Saying: Sentiment Analysis With Opentok and Azure Face API

You know that person. It could be your significant other, a child, a co-worker, or a friend. That person that says one thing, but you can tell by their face, they mean something completely different. You probably just pictured them in your head. Maybe you remember the exact conversation. Perhaps it went like this:

You: Okay?

Them: Fine.

Spoiler Alert: It wasn't fine.

Wouldn't it be great if you could know the sentiment behind what they were saying? With OpenTok and Azure's Face API you can!

In this tutorial, we will build a multi-party video conference that allows us to analyze the sentiment of each participant based on their facial expression. Then we'll display that sentiment as an emoji over their video.

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Metamorphosis of a butterfly with the .NET core and AutoMapper logos

Using AutoMapper with ASP.NET Core 3

AutoMapper is well known in the .NET community. It bills itself as "a simple little library built to solve a deceptively complex problem - getting rid of code that maps one object to another," and it does the job nicely.

In the past, I've used it exclusively with ASP.NET APIs. However, the method for utilizing it via dependency injection has changed. So let's review how to get started, how to define mappings and how to inject our mappings into ASP.NET Core APIs.

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Fireworks with Michael's avatar wearing a new years hat.

Cheers to 2019! Bring on 2020!

Thanks for the memories 2019. You were a good one.

2019 wasn't without some struggles, but there were several huge wins that I'll never forget. One of the things that I started in earnest in 2019, that led to one of the most dramatic changes in my life, was live-streaming on Twitch. In addition to the amazing people I met, it awakened a passion in me to help others succeed which led to a career change. In the last quarter of the year, I started as a Developer Advocate at Nexmo. So now I get to learn, teach and help others succeed and get paid for it!

So yeah, 2019's been a good one, but let's see how I did versus the goals I set to start the year and plan some goals for 2020.

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