Christopher Frenz

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Top Stories by Christopher Frenz

The ability to perform pattern-matching operations on text is a skill that is highly useful to any programmer. Whether you are creating a routine to validate data entered into a form, performing parsing and mining on data sets, or searching for sequence similarities in the human genome, chances are that the ability to construct a regular expression will be of great value to you. A single regular expression can often be used to create the same pattern-matching functionality that would otherwise require a lengthy subroutine. Yet despite these apparent benefits, many .NET developers find regular expressions daunting because they have a syntax based on Perl 5 regular expressions and are thus somewhat different from the typical .NET language constructs. In this article I will discuss the basic syntax of regular expressions and how they operate in order to demystify them... (more)

The Open Source Advantage in Secure Application Development

The security benefits and risks of Open Source code is one of the most debated topics in information security today. The views of proponents of the Open Source model are typified by Eric Raymond's argument that Open Source software is intrinsically more secure since its open nature lets a greater number of programmers view the source code and uncover potential security threats before they're released to the wild. Fewer people see closed source software, on the other hand, and so the odds of uncovering a potential security threat before a system cracker finds it is diminished. Op... (more)

Applicability of the .NET Platform to Bioinformatics Research

A current look at the field of bioinformatics will reveal that it is a field that is largely dominated by the Linux operating system, as well as by programming languages such as Perl, Python, and Java. Windows and its associated native application development platforms are not in widespread use among present-day bioinformatics practitioners. In fact, the usage of Linux and other open source technologies will likely remain the dominant platforms upon which most novel and/or large-scale bioinformatics research is conducted. Scientific computing of all types has deep-seated roots in... (more)

Windows for Supercomputers

In late May 2004, Microsoft made the announcement that it was considering entering the High-Performance Computing (HPC) Market, a market that has traditionally been dominated by custom-engineered Unix-based machines. In recent years, advances in technology have made possible the construction of lower-cost computing clusters that utilize off-the-shelf hardware such as Intel- and AMD-based processors. The operating system of choice for these lower-end clusters has been Linux. In fact, this market is representative of one of Linux's strongest footholds. Many in the Linux camp consid... (more)

Error Prevention in VS.NET

With the release of Visual Studio .NET and the structured error-handling capabilities of the .NET Framework came significant improvements in the way that VS programmers are able to capture and deal with programmatic errors. Yet these more robust abilities do not lessen the importance of one of the most time-tested means of error handling: prevention. In this article I will highlight various methods of data validation that can be used to eliminate potentially problematic errors before they have a chance to occur. Data validation checks any inputted data for potential problems pri... (more)