I’m Eric Tummers, Technical Consultant at Valid, and this is how I work

I’m hired as a Software Architect to build a solution with Microsoft products. Our team works by the scrum guide and is moving towards continuous deployment. We are learning and growing while delivering business value. This is hard work. Every sprint we complete means the retrospective is done in the pub.

I expect the best and I give the best. Here’s the beer. Here’s the entertainment. Now have fun. That’s an order!

Location: Sittard, NL
Current Gig: Technical Consultant, Valid
Word that best describes how you work: Teamwork
Current mobile device: iPhone se
Current computer: MacBook 15 inch

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without? Why?

Wunderlist: work tasks, chores, groceries, planning, every task is there.
Evernote: I’m a fan for years now. Not to happy about the recent update but time will improve this.
iSmoothrun: when I’m not working, I’m running, this app tracks just about every metric I can think of and shares it to all the platforms (runkeeper for one)
Parallels 11: Running Windows on my MacBook is a must. And of course visual studio, team foundation server, build, release manager, sql server management studio, remote desktop, powershell, and some other tools I need for work.

What’s your workspace setup like?

Work at the office is on a thin client with 21 inch screen and (wired) mouse and keyboard. The desk and chair comply with all regulations. We have a great coffee machine.


My home workspace has moved to the kitchen table with my Macbook 15 inch. No externals and enough battery for the whole day. Freedom!

What’s your best time-saving shortcut/life hack?

Timebox. Start on a task and spent the time you’ve got to get the best result. Get someone to look at it, get feedback. Then decide if the result is final or to spent some more time.

Besides your phone and computer, what gadget can’t you live without and why?

I’ve been running with my Magellan Echo for some time. It is a sports watch that hooks up to my phone by bluetooth to start / stop my runs, control the music and see the metrics right on my wrist. It is powered by a battery that lasts 6 months and is easy to replace.
My Apple TV2 (jailbroken) hooked up to my NAS for movies and series. Also hooked to my stereo for music streaming. Awesome device!

What everyday thing are you better at than everyone else? What’s your secret?

Learning new things. My current project lets me implement new things (joy) Also I try to learn the things I know to my team or anyone who listens.
I have a basic understanding of how things work and try to map new things on there. For the details I have a Pluralsight subscription and black belt google skills.

What do you listen to while you work?

My alarm clock plays classical music to wake me up in the morning. The car stereo plays about everything (grunge, rock, kids stories) driving to work. When I need some focus I play drum and bass on my headphones. My ringtone is still Run riot by Camo & Krooked.

What are you currently reading?

Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss. A Christmas gift. Best described as a book of “How I Work” posts full with tips and tricks of the titans (experts)


How do you recharge? What do you do when you want to forget about work?

Spending quality time with my wife and daughters. Phone on silent, no screens, no work. Mostly piggyback riding and thee parties
Also sports like running, fitness, climbing and snowboarding to keep me fit and healthy.

Fill in the blank: I’d love to see _________ answer these same questions.

Iris Classon, because she had to start from zero with her career shift and is now a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional).

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

someecards.com - Make a shit first draft you cannot edit a blank page
I believe this is a variant on a Hemingway quote.

Is there anything else you’d like to add that might be interesting to readers?

Learn Powershell. There is so much possible with Powershell. If you can learn one thing this year pick Powershell. 

Original idea from Lifehacker.com.

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Image courtesy of iprostocks / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of iprostocks / FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Control libraries are available in all shapes and sizes. The library from syncfusion has

  • the best license – flat yearly license fee, unlimited developers within the same company,
  • the best features – export to excel, advanced sort and inline editing for the grid and
  • the best support.

We only have used the Grid in our project but plan to apply the complete suite where needed. See their demo site to get excited.


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Image courtesy of spacex / unsplash.com

Image courtesy of spacex / unsplash.com


Get real time communication between the client and the server. We use it to monitor jobs. SignalR supports Web Sockets, and falls back to other compatible techniques for older browsers.

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Toastr is one of those GUI items everybody is familiar with. It is the standard in feedback on webpages. Adding this to your solution is almost mandatory.

After installation of the nuget you’ll need to include the js and css files in the _layout.cshtml razor page. Now add some helper classes like the MVC Wrapper for Toastr from Johan Ohlin. This makes creating and showing the Toastr messages really easy by extending the Controller.

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Image courtesy of Ales Krivec / unsplash.com
Image courtesy of Ales Krivec / unsplash.com


Common.logging provides an abstraction for the logging framework of choice. For IoC the common.logging offers an interface. NoOpLogger is a fake implementation used for unit testing.

I prefer to use the nuget from log4net with the Common.Logging implementation. https://www.nuget.org/packages/Common.Logging.Log4Net1211/ With log4net I log to a database table for easy access to the logging and to a file for fallback if the database is unavailable.

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http://ajaxload.infoJust a tip for creating that loading image everybody uses or your custom version of it. Goto http://ajaxload.info

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Image courtesy of Mike Enerio / unsplash.com
Image courtesy of Mike Enerio / unsplash.com


Mapping two objects using convention and coded/configurerd mappings. This comes in handy when moving through the layers of a solution (data > business > viewmodel) Every property with the same name is automatically mapper – hence the name.

The newest version of AutoMapper offers an Interface for use with IoC. Save the MapperConfiguration and use it every time to construct the IMapper impementation (config.CreateMapper())

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Image courtesy of Tim Gouw / unsplash.com
Image courtesy of Tim Gouw / unsplash.com


Dependency Inversion is one of the SOLID principles. An IoC container is a must for me when developing. Unity is my goto framework for the last year.

I prefer Unity for it’s lifetime control options. Do I need a new object every time, singleton or per thread? With Unity I can specify this in the configuration.

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