Saturday, June 03, 2006

Microsoft .NOT

I have a love-hate with most technologies. I'm not alone.
My dream technology combo: PHP and MySQL on a Microsoft IIS platform with all of the filesystem commands common to Linux available for this version. I have had this combo before and from a dumb-blonde perspective, it has been great! I'm sure the server has a small stroke everytime you issue a request. And, hackers slather at the PHP/Microsoft combo. So, enough said about my biases.
I thought Microsoft's .NET platform held a lot of promise. I dived into .NET development for a while. It had some painful aspects that I thought were neccessary evils. The compiled version was fast, while the inline code was SLOW. The Datarow controls were cryptic. Worse than that, they were toxic to search engines (I do wonder if MSN Search could parse them). I threw link checkers at my Recipe site; they choked. This recipe site has 6997 recipes. You'd think that would garner some traffic. Nope. This huge and "easy" to get at repository sat unused. Why? Because I chose to use .NET, datarows drawn from an Access database and those rows passed users to the recipes they desired. Search engines went in a couple of pages then petered out.
I wanted to pursue a distraction today. So, I went back to Access, did a Query from the data table, made a simple report with a lot of HTML built into the output, then I output the whole table via this report and query.
That left me with a massive report. I fed it through a script to split it, then save these pieces as individual pages. The report built all of the << < > >> navigation into the pages and I built a new splash page. The recipe display page itself was ideal, so I left it as is.
The experience has cooled me on .NET. In a month or two, I will report back to discuss if my recipes site is now well travelled since I removed all of the rocks and boulders from the road.

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