Tips & How-To Articles, Tutorials

  • Clustering Non-Numeric Data Using C#

    Clustering non-numeric -- or categorial -- data is surprisingly difficult, but it's explained here by resident data scientist Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research, who provides all the code you need for a complete system using an algorithm based on a metric called category utility (CU), a measure how much information you gain by clustering. 06/03/2020

  • The End of Integration Testing: If You've Passed All the Tests ...

    Really, you only need to do two kinds of testing: Unit testing (to make sure that your individual components work) and end-to-end testing (to make sure your application works). Anything else is just a waste of your time. 05/07/2020

  • Data Clustering with K-Means++ Using C#

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research explains the k-means++ technique for data clustering, the process of grouping data items so that similar items are in the same cluster, for human examination to see if any interesting patterns have emerged or for software systems such as anomaly detection. 05/06/2020

  • Creating Flexible Queries with Parameters in GraphQL

    GraphQL gives clients who call your Web services the ability to specify what properties of your data objects they want. Here are two ways to let those clients also specify which data objects they want. 05/05/2020

  • How to Do Kernel Logistic Regression Using C#

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research uses code samples, a full C# program and screenshots to detail the ins and outs of kernal logistic regression, a machine learning technique that extends regular logistic regression -- used for binary classification -- to deal with data that is not linearly separable. 04/29/2020

  • Top 3 Blazor Extensions for Visual Studio Code

    Some developers prefer to create applications with Microsoft's open-source Blazor tooling from within the open-source, cross-platform Visual Studio Code editor. Here are the top tools in the VS Code Marketplace for those folk, as measured by the number of installations. 04/08/2020

  • How to Invert a Machine Learning Matrix Using C#

    VSM Senior Technical Editor Dr. James McCaffrey, of Microsoft Research, explains why inverting a matrix -- one of the more common tasks in data science and machine learning -- is difficult and presents code that you can use as-is, or as a starting point for custom matrix inversion scenarios. 04/07/2020

  • How to Train a Machine Learning Radial Basis Function Network Using C#

    A radial basis function network (RBF network) is a software system that's similar to a single hidden layer neural network, explains Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research, who uses a full C# code sample and screenshots to show how to train an RBF network classifier. 03/24/2020

  • How to Create a Radial Basis Function Network Using C#

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research explains how to design a radial basis function (RBF) network -- a software system similar to a single hidden layer neural network -- and describes how an RBF network computes its output. 03/13/2020

  • How to Do Machine Learning Evolutionary Optimization Using C#

    Resident data scientist Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research turns his attention to evolutionary optimization, using a full code download, screenshots and graphics to explain this machine learning technique used to train many types of models by modeling the biological processes of natural selection, evolution, and mutation. 02/21/2020

  • Entity Framework Core Migrations

    Eric Vogel uses code samples and screenshots to demonstrate how to do Entity Framework Core migrations in a .NET Core application through the command line and in code. 02/18/2020

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    How to Do Multi-Class Logistic Regression Using C#

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research uses a full code program, examples and graphics to explain multi-class logistic regression, an extension technique that allows you to predict a class that can be one of three or more possible values, such as predicting the political leaning of a person (conservative, moderate, liberal) based on age, sex, annual income and so on. 02/11/2020

  • Lose Your Business App? VS Code to the Rescue!

    I found a new use for Visual Studio Code, the little code editor that could: substituting for a vital work app when your PC dies and a replacement won't be shipped to your remote office for weeks. 02/04/2020

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    Didact Project Walks Through Tutorials in Visual Studio Code

    A Red Hat developer has created the Didact project, a Visual Studio Code extension that puts the code editor to work as a tutorial guide and also showcases other things it can do via a combination of technologies. 01/31/2020

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    Letting the Client Control Data Retrieval with GraphQL in .ASP.NET Core

    GraphQL lets you create data access services without writing controllers. Instead of writing procedural code, you declare schemas describing what queries you'll accept and what you're willing to return. Here's how to get started in ASP.NET Core. 01/29/2020

  • Suppressing Events in Blazor and ASP.NET Core Version 3.1

    ASP.NET Core Version 3.1 adds some new features for managing events in Blazor. You may think you'll never need them, but there may be a time when you'll be glad to know about at least one of them. 01/27/2020

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    Sharing Data and Splitting Components in Blazor

    ASP.NET Core Version 3.1 has at least two major changes that you'll want to take advantage of. Well, Peter thinks you will. Depending on your background, your response to one of them may be a resounding “meh.” 01/23/2020

  • How to Create a Machine Learning Decision Tree Classifier Using C#

    After earlier explaining how to compute disorder and split data in his exploration of machine learning decision tree classifiers, resident data scientist Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research now shows how to use the splitting and disorder code to create a working decision tree classifier. 01/22/2020

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    How to Compute Disorder for Machine Learning Decision Trees Using C#

    Using a decision tree classifier from a machine learning library is often awkward because it usually must be customized and library decision trees have many complex supporting functions, says resident data scientist Dr. James McCaffrey, so when he needs a decision tree classifier, he always creates one from scratch. Here's how. 01/21/2020

  • Don't Do It All Yourself: Exploiting gRPC Well Known Types in .NET Core

    If you're creating business services that send dates and decimal data then you may be concerned that gRPC services don't support the relevant data types. Don't Panic! There are solutions. Here's how to use them. 01/17/2020

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    Implementing State in .NET Core gRPC Messages with oneof

    In the real world, you've been dealing with the State pattern every time you designed a set of database tables. The Protocol Buffers specification lets you do the same thing when you define the messages you send and receive from your gRPC Web Service. 01/14/2020

  • Reusing and Recycling Data Structures in gRPC Services in .NET Core

    Here's everything you need to know to create a standard set of reusable message formats to use with your gRPC services. 01/10/2020

  • .NET Core: Writing Really Obvious Code with Enumerated Values in gRPC Web Services

    Peter's pretty fanatical about replacing documentation/comments with readable code. So he's very excited about using enums when defining gRPC services. Very. Excited. But there are some best practices and "things to be aware of" when using this feature. 01/08/2020

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    How to Do Machine Learning Perceptron Classification Using C#

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research uses code samples and screen shots to explain perceptron classification, a machine learning technique that can be used for predicting if a person is male or female based on numeric predictors such as age, height, weight, and so on. It's mostly useful to provide a baseline result for comparison with more powerful ML techniques such as logistic regression and k-nearest neighbors. 01/07/2020

  • How to Design Messages for gRPC Services in .NET Core

    Defining your gRPC service using the Protocol Buffers specification is pretty easy. There are just a couple of things to be aware of as you convert from the specification to .NET Core and then manage your service's evolution. 01/06/2020

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