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Summary

It may not be possible for every developer to know or understand some of the more advanced features of a new framework such as .NET. However, you certainly could expect a moderately experienced programmer to know how to define the basic elements of a class. Providing a project template for all developers to use is a convenient way to introduce new, advanced subjects as well as institute a certain degree of uniformity across your enterprise.

The process of adding a project template requires some experience with a variety of disciplines, such as writing JScript, modifying text files, and knowing enough about .NET to know what details have to be replaced by the wizard engine. Creating project templates, components, and wizards is an excellent job for a person playing the role of toolsmith in your enterprise. One clever programmer can make everybody's job a little easier.

In my experience, some programmers are heads-down coders, some are tinkerers, and some are "big picture" problem solvers. If you have a talented person in your group who likes to create components and is a good general problem-solver, this person may be an excellent candidate for the role of toolsmith. You can easily keep such a person busy building project templates, macros, components, and other such tools that provide benefits for all developers on your staff. If you work in a small development shop, your toolsmith may necessarily have other responsibilities; in a larger group, this may be a full-time job.

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