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Tom Fosdick

About

Software Developer for the University of Hull specialising in critical systems for the emergency services. Cyclist, runner, blogger and motorsport enthusiast.

Blog posts

I’m Pulling the Social Media Plug

In the words of a certain radio station, “Social media can be a force for good, but it can also be a giant pain in the arse.” When I wrote that First Class Post was the most rapid form of communication of which I approved I was only half joking. I recently spent two weeks Read more →


C# Best Practice: Why a Separate “lock” Object?

Some time about 1995 I noticed that I was writing a lot more concurrent code than the other programmers. It was almost as if someone was deliberately pushing it in my direction… That theme never really changed. I was rather surprised then when a developer made a comment on something I’d written a few years Read more →


Cultural Erosion

Cultural erosion is often cited as an argument against European Integration. A fortnight ago I was in a Belgian roadside café. They had three different types of mayonnaise in pump dispensers and a man sat eating moules marinière with a tiny bottle of rosé. Britain has always been a bit special – and that’s not Read more →


First Class Post

Someone recently accused me of replying too slowly on WhatsApp. “First Class post” I replied, “is the most rapid form of communication of which I approve.” I wasn’t joking. The fact that you’re not going to get a reply for at least 24 hours, if not the best part of a week, tends to rather Read more →


One From The Vaults: Testing

Whilst I was looking for something else I found an explanation I wrote years ago to try to explain to senior management how testing had changed and become critical in the Agile environment. It’s not the easiest thing to try to get across: the business wants features that it can sell. I don’t think I Read more →


Poppies

A few years ago I took the very deliberate decision to stop wearing a remembrance poppy, because I actually believe in remembrance. Take a look around social media in the few days around November 11th and you’ll see an awful lot of messages simply thanking military personnel for their service. That is only half the Read more →


Stop! Thief!

“That image looks awfully familiar” I found myself thinking when reading an article on vinyl record run-out groove etchings. Then it clicked, it was one of my images, reproduced in someone else’s article without my permission and with no recognition that it was my image. I’m not a professional photographer, it’s true I do know Read more →


Entity Framework Double PK Overwrite Gotcha

I was writing some unit tests: largely out of completeness I wanted to test that you couldn’t insert two records with the same primary key. The code is simple enough. var car = db.Cars.OrderBy(g => Guid.NewGuid()).First(); var pool1 = db.Pools.OrderBy(g => Guid.NewGuid()).First(); var driverName1 = Guid.NewGuid().ToString().Trim('{', '}'); var created1 = PoolAllocatedCar.Create(car, pool1, driverN… Read more →


The Jet Set

I really genuinely hate air travel. I will do pretty much anything I can to avoid it. I’ve taken a 16 hour train journey from Suffolk to Barcelona to avoid a 3 hour flight. It’s not that I’m afraid of flying, there’s just something about the whole experience that I find fundamentally unpleasant. South Africa Read more →


A Tender Subject

I’d barely got into the corridor before I found myself being bundled into the wall by a rotund sales guy. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” he barked in my face, “If you ever pull a stunt like that again I’ll making fucking sure we put you out of business. Consider this a Read more →