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Please leave a comment, ask a question and consider subscribing to the latest posts via RSS or email. Thank you for visiting! Below is a list of entries related to the tag listed above.. My site contains more than just the information below and I'd encourage you to visit the home page to view current information as well as other items/categories that might be of interest.



Microsoft Ignite for .NET Developers

This was the first time in a long time (I think maybe 10+ years) that I didn’t go to TechEd…err, I mean Ignite :-).  Was I sad to miss seeing old friends and hearing about TwoWay binding woes?  Sure.  Did I miss Orlando in the summer…nope (I get, it’s an easy shot, but yeah no).  I watched from afar though and found some really great stuff for .NET developers on different spectrums.  Ignite is Microsoft’s opportunity to share what is happening in the tech now versus only focus on futures.  I think for .NET developers we long for the ‘vNext’...

Build 2017 UI Recap

Well that was fun!  It was really exciting to share with the world what our team has been working on in designing and developing over the past few years with regard to Windows UI platform advancements.  Build 2017 was a culmination of a lot of efforts across the company in various areas, but for UI it was the introduction of our evolution of design, the Fluent Design System.  This represents a wave of UI innovations over time, with Build 2017 showing the first views of Wave 1.  There was a lot of great buzz about Fluent, but for a great...

Implementing a type converter in UWP XAML

Verbose XAML, we all love it right?  What?!  You don’t like writing massive amounts of angle brackets to get to define certain properties?  I mean who doesn’t love something like this: <MapControl> <MapControl.Center> <Location> <Location.Latitude>47.669444</Location.Latitude> <Location.Longitude>-122.123889</Location.Longitude> </Location> </MapControl.Center> </MapControl> What’s not to love there?  Oh I suppose you prefer something like this? <MapControl Center="47.669444,-122.123889" /> In the XAML dialect this is what...

Build 2015 recap for XAML and native apps

Wow, what a week.  I have to say even as employees of Microsoft, we get surprised when we go to our conferences and see some of the bigger announcements.  There are things that are being worked on that are new or just in different divisions that we’re not focused on.  This past week at the Build 2015 conference was an example of that for me.  Lots of good stuff for developers from client to server! Universal Windows Platform At Build this year we introduced the Universal Windows Platform v10 with a set of new APIs and unified features...

I lost 55lbs using these two amazing simple steps–you can too!

TL;DR – I got off my butt, started eating better and lost 40lbs in ~100 days.  You can too. UPDATE: As of NOV-2014 I’m down 55lbs since this timeframe.  Feel amazing, found new hobbies that are active and loving life again. This year started very depressing personally as each look in the mirror showed another chin growing under the previous.  I weighed the most I’ve ever weighed in my life and it just kept getting away from me.  My move to Redmond brought back a different office life for me from my previous role at Microsoft and I...

Updated Flickr4Writer for new Flickr API restrictions

Before Windows Live Writer was even publically released, I was glad to have been an early beta user/tester of the product.  The team thought early about an extensible model and it has been my content authoring tool ever since.  It has allowed me to use *my* preferred content workflow with my cloud providers/formatters/tracking and other such plug-ins due to this extensibility. One of the first plugins available was one of mine I called Flickr4Writer.  It was pretty popular (as most ‘firsts’ are) and I got a lot of good feedback that changed the functionality and user interface.  Is it...

Callisto Migration Tip: Menus

I’m continuing in my series of helping to provide Callisto migration tips to use new Windows 8.1 features. In a recent post I talked about the Flyout control and provided the path to the platform-provided features. In Callisto, the Menu control was provided as sort of a prescribed content for the Flyout control. In fact you really couldn’t use Menu without Flyout. This guide will help you change to the platform-provided MenuFlyout now available in Windows 8.1. API Differences On the public surface area, there aren’t actually many changes here. Windows 8.1 MenuFlyout provides more...

Callisto Migration Tip: Flyouts

This is another post in my series of providing migration tips from certain Callisto controls to using Windows 8.1 features. I previously demonstrated probably the most popular Callisto control, the SettingsFlyout. Coming in a very close second in popularity is the Flyout control. The Flyout is a concept of a non-modal small dialog for information and commands. The primary use case for a lot of Flyouts was something from Button areas, namely the AppBar. Getting the experience right was not intuitively easy using a Popup primitive as you had to handle the right...

Callisto Migration Tip: Use PlaceholderText in Windows 8.1

Continuing on my tips in migrating from Callisto for platform-supported Windows 8.1 APIs, I’ll cover another simple, but helpful text control in this post: WatermarkTextBox. When writing an app that provides input from customers, providing some “hint” when there is no text is a valuable thing to add. Here’s how to change to the platform-supported APIs. Change back to TextBox When using Callisto, you had to use a specific control that derived from TextBox. Simple enough: <callisto:WatermarkTextBox Watermark="Enter some text..." /> In Windows 8.1 the concept of watermark text was added to controls for text input, including PasswordBox (one...

Callisto Migration Tip: Use CharacterEllipsis

Frankly I’m going to be honest and say I’m not sure why it took us so long to add this capability to TextBlock, especially given that the support in Callisto provided via DynamicTextBlock was originally done in Silverlight 2. O_O. Well, Robby can rest well now knowing that we no longer have to depend on his contributions to Callisto. Example of use DynamicTextBlock on bottom Here’s the quick migration tip. Change back to TextBlock The DynamicTextBlock served one purpose, to provide trimming at the character level rather than the word level. The implementation of DynamicTextBlock was done...

Callisto Migration Tip: Use Windows 8.1 SettingsFlyout

As a part of my promise from my previous post talking about migrating to new Windows 8.1 controls instead of some Callisto ones, I’ll talk about how to leverage the new SettingsFlyout control provided by the framework. Without a doubt one of the two most popular Callisto controls is the SettingsFlyout. This is a marquee experience for Windows Store apps to provide the “charm” area for managing settings for your application. This control provides the animations, near pixel-perfect UI and behavior for handling the software keyboard movement. Like everything in Callisto, it is simple...

Callisto Update for Windows 8.1

As I spent time last week updating my Callisto library for Windows 8.1 I realized it was a long time between the last release.  Well, I’ve finally updated it for Windows 8.1 release which is now available.  This is a major, yet minor release…allow me to explain. Windows 8 Support As of the Callisto 1.4.0 release, Windows 8 support ends.  Support in the non-commercial Open Source world is a bit of a funny term as the support has always been provided by myself and Morten.  I wrestled for a few days trying to keep a source code base,...

Getting Google Chrome browser to work with touch

I’ve seen some reports and received some emails on email groups that I’m a part of around Windows 8 and Google Chrome browser and how touch is not working.  In fact I was initially confused about this myself because it was working fine for me on my machine (Lenovo x230t) but other people were insistent that it wasn’t working.  Then I asked what machine they were on. Almost exclusively everyone was on a “high DPI” machine (or had high DPI settings in their display).  If you have a Surface Pro, for example, you are using a high DPI machine. ...

Creating XAML Code Snippets for Visual Studio 2013

A few weeks ago I had the great pleasure of being in front of you, our developer customers (and friends) at the Microsoft BUILD conference. (I never know how to write “build” in a sentence and refuse to use the “//” in front of it.) These are things that I LOVE doing and wish I could do it more. I had the privilege of introducing an overview of what was new in the XAML UI framework for Windows 8.1. All the sessions are recorded so please go view mine and review it how you think so they...

Priorities, passion and employment

Those of us who work for corporations/companies/whatever (read: not self-employed) usually get an allotment of vacation (or ‘PTO’ – personal time off) each year.  Most companies have policies that put a cap on the amount of PTO you can carry over year after year.  Anything you don’t use, you lose.  You’d be an idiot to lose PTO (which is effectively paid days of work).  I was an idiot last year. At the end of the year I got the email from HR indicating that I was going to forfeit a lot of vacation if I didn’t use...

AutoHotkey–my new snippet tool

This week was TechEd North America, a conference from Microsoft for technical professionals covering the span of pretty much everything Microsoft produces to support IT professionals and software developers.  I was pleased to have been invited to speak on developing Metro style apps in XAML for .NET developers.  Like most developer presenters, I planned on showing a lot of demos, using different tools, editors, and varying code samples, URLs, etc.  When you are a presenter at a conference you usually don’t have the luxury of sitting in your office and doing things without distractions.  You want to get across your...

XAML AppBar Button Styles for Windows 8

An old colleague of mine and now HTML extraordinaire, Adam Kinney, just recently posted on his spelunking of some styling in both WinJS and XAML runtimes with regard to icons/buttons to use in a Metro style app and the AppBar. Adam has two posts: (WinJS) Windows 8 AppBarIcons enumerated and visualized (XAML) Windows 8 AppBarButtonStyles enumerated and visualized Basically what these do is define a set of styles, both in CSS and XAML, that map back to unicode values in the Segoe UI Symbol font.  This contains a...

Windows 8 for keyboard users

I hope that you had a chance to download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview.  One of the things that you will absolutely want to do is watch Jensen’s video as a video walk-through of Windows 8 features, focusing on working with the operating system as a user, introducing the gestures and things you want to know about.  It is a great, short video and you should definitely watch it: As an avid keyboard user (and one without a touch device currently) I rely on the ‘desktop’ use of my Windows installation.  In addition to those things that Jensen mentions in his...

Portable tools rock–my current favorites and a great tool

Lately I’ve been doing a lot of re-paving of machines and I never had my favorite tools on them, nor did I want to spend the time to re-install a set of tools that I knew I would blow away each day anyway.  Mostly my daily builds have been to do some scenario validation and is quite repetitive.  However there are times where a stable build combination comes along that I keep for a while to work on customer apps or sample development.  When these times happen I find myself needing my helpful little utilities more frequently. Recently I’ve...

Windows Store details announced and a contest

Today there was an event in San Francisco which introduced the Windows Store for Windows apps as well as some details on revenue sharing and policies.  As a part of that Antoine LeBland, Vice President for Windows Web Services, also opened up a new dialog about the store specifically in a new blog Windows Store for developers.  This blog will help developers learn about aspects of the store as well as serve as a place for dialog between the store teams and you, the app developer.  I think it is great that the store team is following in the footsteps...

XAML Sessions at BUILD

By now hopefully you’ve seen a lot of the revealing of what the next version of Windows has in store for developers.  Trust me there is a LOT to absorb as the week continues and you should absolutely keep your eye on the BUILD conference site where session information will likely start to appear. I know that a lot of readers here will be interested in the XAML-specific sessions so I thought I’d iterate them here real quick.  NOTE: Anything on the agenda with a “C” after the session number is a chalk talk...

Silverlight 5 RC available for developers

The Silverlight 5 Release Candidate (RC) is now available for developers to download.  As with previous preview releases, this is a developer-focused release, which means no production releases, no go-live license, etc.  This is made available for you to test your apps, upgrade to get latest features and to deal with the changes from beta to RC. The beta was a great release and preview of what the team had introduced as new features.  You can read back on my Silverlight 5 guide to new features post regarding if you haven’t understood the latest and greatest additions.  However there...

Life at the Mothership: an introspection

Are you one of those people who hate when people post to their blogs about how it has been so long since they’ve blogged and they apologize for the delay and cite all sorts of excuses?  Yeah, me too ;-) I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about my move to the mothership this past year.  I’ve been journaling things all along the way about my feelings, frustrations, personal tribulations and great experiences I’ve had this past year.  I thought I’d share some of that with you all to provide some behind-the-scenes aspects of how some, not all,...

Smashing Magazine May 2011 Windows 7 Theme

May is here!…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The May themes seem to be pretty random to me…no clear theme from contributors…zombies at a picnic?  Ok, I guess.  Here is your May 2011 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 26 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine May 2011 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine May 2011 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: May 2011 (original post) Special thanks to TransferBigFiles.com...

Silverlight 5 Beta–A guide to the new features

At the MIX11 conference Scott Guthrie announced the availability of Silverlight 5 Beta.  I suppose this doesn’t come at a surprise to most as this is now a regular annual occurrence.  In fact it is almost exactly a year ago when Silverlight 4 was released. The team has been working very hard to deliver on the features we discussed at the Silverlight Firestarter event last December 2010.  That was a flurry of revealing that happened in December showing the world what the Silverlight team has been working on.  There was no rest for them of course and they continued to complete...

Smashing Magazine April 2011 Windows 7 Theme

April showers bring May flowers as they say…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The April themes follow the theme what you'd expect with some flowers and such...ad a few fun ones sprinkled in there.  Here is your April 2011 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 35 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine April 2011 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine April 2011 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: April 2011 (original post) Special thanks to TransferBigFiles.com for hosting...

Smashing Magazine March 2011 Windows 7 Theme

March is here…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The March themes seem completely random to me.  I guess I expected some St. Patrick’s Day themes.  We need some more participation from inspired designers/photographers/artists!  Here is your March 2011 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 35 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine March 2011 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine March 2011 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: March 2011 (original post) ...

Silverlight Toolkits now on NuGet

Last night after a quick e-mail exchange with Phil, David and Scott I revised my Silverlight Toolkit “NuPack” packages I had previously created when NuPack NuGet first came out.  At the time there were a couple of things still not supported and frankly, I got busy and never bothered to check back.  Scott had seen something on a forum inquiring why Silverlight stuff, namely our open source controls, aren’t deployable via NuGet.  There wasn’t any other reason other than resources not currently scheduled to add this to the build flows, etc.  So I spent a few minutes revising the packages...

Smashing Magazine February 2011 Windows 7 Theme

February is here…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The February themes range from love (Valentine's) to Chinese New Year.  So here is your February 2011 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 40 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine February 2011 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine February 2011 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: February 2011 (original post) Special thanks to TransferBigFiles.com for hosting these wallpaper themes through their great service! (Please note that these downloads are only...

Smashing Magazine January 2011 Windows 7 Theme

Happy New Year!!!  January (and 2011) is here…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The January themes mostly concentrate on a lot of winter and New Year themes (with two random Drupal 7 wallpapers...warning for non-geeks).  Above are two of my favorites.  So here is your January 2011 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 60 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine January 2011 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine January 2011 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: January 2011...

Smashing Magazine December 2010 Windows 7 Theme

December is here (and half way done…sorry for delay)…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The December themes mostly concentrate on a lot of holiday themes.  Frankly my delay was in part because I didn’t find them all that inspiring…sorry, I just didn’t.  So here is your December 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 50 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine December 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine December 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) ...

Welcome New Silverlight MVPs for October 2010

Just a quick shout-out to congratulate the latest Silverlight MVPs to the program.  The Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) program is a recognition program that is in place to recognize and reward those individuals who have been identified by individuals (peers, Microsoft staff, etc.) as experts in their technology field and global contributors to the technology.  As of today (01 OCT 2010) we welcome some new folks to the Silverlight group: Colin Melia (@colinizer) Kunal Chowdhury (@kunal2383) Tetsuji Kato (@iwiz_sophy) Kelps Leite...

Smashing Magazine October 2010 Windows 7 Theme

October is here…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The October themes mostly concentrate on a lot of fall and Halloween themes.  So here is your October 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 45 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine October 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine October 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: October 2010 (original post) For details on these and to see past ones, visit the Smashing Magazine Windows 7 Theme information for...

Writing plugins for Seesmic Desktop

Today, Seesmic more broadly launched Seesmic Desktop, a refreshed platform for interacting with various social media outlets like Twitter, Facebook, Google Buzz, etc.  Seesmic has been one of the leaders in this space providing client applications on various platforms across web, desktop and mobile and providing us with unified views of our interaction with others online. You may have remembered seeing Loic on stage at MIX last year demonstrating their first preview of this updated platform and inviting developers to be a part of extending the shell.  That’s right…their platform is extensible!  A great application that I can also...

Smashing Magazine August 2010 Windows 7 Theme

August 1st is here (well okay, so I'm a little late)…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! The August themes seem to be continuing the focus on 'summer' things.  So here is your August 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 35 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine August 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine August 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: August 2010 (original post) For details on these and to see past ones, visit the...

Silverlight bookshelf from SilverlightShow

SilverlightShow.net is one of those great community sites providing information, tutorials and general developer information around Silverlight.  They’ve done a great job providing a spectrum of beginner to advanced topics on Silverlight development.  At MIX10 I was talking with one of the brains behind the site (and Silverlight MVP), Emil Stoychev, one one of the ways they had been displaying book recommendations on their site.  It was a bookshelf view that I thought was cool and I wanted to use it for my own book recommendation list on my blog.  NOTE: It was...

July 2010 Silverlight MVP Awards

Each quarter, new MVP (Microsoft Most Valuable Professional) candidates are awarded.  January 2010 is the first awards of the year and so I present the new/moved/re-awarded Silverlight specific MVPs: Alex Knight (@agkdesign) – started SilverZine and is a XAML designer extraordinaire Cigdem Patlak  (@crocusgirl) – doing some really fun stuff with Silverlight Show and a talented developer/designer Rodrigo Diaz Concha (@rdiazconcha) – doing some really great things in our Latin America countries!  Gracias! Jeremy Likness (@jeremylikness) – seriously, go subscribe now.  Jeremy is too...

On leaving the Arizona community…

As I write this in my hotel room now on the eve of me leaving the state of Arizona, I am left with mixed emotions.  Most of them frankly are deeply personal which I’ll spare you the details.  However, it is here – specifically in the Phoenix metro area – that I grew the most technically.  NOTE: Yes there are some Microsoft employees that live outside of the ivory towers of Redmond.  However, and to be frankly honest, when you work for a product team -- *currently* – it is fair to say that growth...

I want more shell applications, especially for mobile

I just got back from speaking/attending the Norwegian Developers Conference in Oslo, Norway.  It was a great time and a well run conference.  Like many other conferences I found myself looking for two things I wanted on my mobile: the schedule and a map/guide for the city (I’ve never been to Oslo).  You see every time I take a trip, here’s what I do: Search for an app that contains the schedule (or offline version).  Ideally allows me to build my schedule and gets updates for changes Find the metro/map/guide for the city...

Smashing Magazine May 2010 Windows 7 Theme

May 1st is around the corner…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! As you might expect with May the general theme is flowers and Mother’s day type things.  My favorites this time being the Thailand Kopipi (above) and the salt shore.  So here is your May 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 40 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine May 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine May 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine...

Silverlight Client for Facebook updated for Silverlight 4 release

Yet again, we’ve updated the Silverlight Client for Facebook for the Silverlight 4 release version.  In order to use the updated one, you must follow these instructions: First, uninstall the previous version you have.  This can be done in Add/Remove Programs on Windows or by just deleting the app on Mac. Ensure you have Silverlight 4 installed.  If you are using the development tools and have installed Silverlight 4 developer tools, that’s fine.  If you are not a developer, visit http://microsoft.com/getsilverlight to get the latest Silverlight 4 version (4.0.50401.0). ...

Congratulations to latest 2nd quarter Silverlight MVPs

Congratulations to all the new/returning MVPs from all competencies, but I wanted to call out the newly awarded Silverlight MVPs for this latest round.  Please join me in congratulating them: Xuan Qin (China) Mark Monster (The Netherlands) (@Mark_Monster) Rene Schulte (Germany) (@rschu) Seungmin Ha (Korea) Jaana Metsamaa (Estonia) And a specific call out also to Colin Blair (@SLColinBlair).  Colin’s work in the WCF RIA Services space gained him recognition from the connected systems division.  Since Colin...

Smashing Magazine April 2010 Windows 7 Theme

April 1st is around the corner…time for an updated Windows 7 Smashing Magazine theme pack! As you might expect with April the general theme is Easter and Earth day type things.  There are a couple of nuggest in there, my favorite being the Reservoir Dogs tribute.  So here is your April 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for wallpapers – unfiltered and uncensored – about 80 wallpapers in all. Smashing Magazine April 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine April 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: April...

Silverlight Client for Facebook updated for Silverlight 4 RC

If you installed the Silverlight Client for Facebook, and also upgraded to the release candidate for Silverlight 4, you may have noticed it stopped working :-). NOTE: Applications compiled on Silverlight 4 beta will not work on machines with Silverlight RC runtime.  This is known/expected.  As with all pre-release software, this type of breaking can be expected. We’ve recently updated the Facebook application, and you will have to re-install.  Follow these steps: Uninstall the Silverlight Facebook client.  You can do this in a few ways.  First on Windows through the Add/Remove Programs or by...

Learning the M-V-VM pattern for XAML development

Quick, what’s the most popular thing in XAML development?  Yeah, thought so…MVVM or Model-View-ViewModel. It’s one of the most popular subjects I hear about when people talk about developing applications with WPF and Silverlight.  However, as much as it is talked about and as much as frameworks are born every day, there isn’t a ton of just simplified ‘here’s how you do it’ information in one place.  I mean, sure there *is* information, but I have to admit I think it is a bit scattered all over. One of the pioneers of promoting this pattern for WPF development,...

Smashing Magazine March 2010 Windows 7 Theme

It’s that time again…beginning of a new month!  That means that Smashing Magazine has released their monthly wallpaper pictures again. Not as many St. Patrick’s themed ones as I would have expected.  Here are your March 2010 Windows 7 Theme Packs for the wallpapers though…including all images (note: some ‘without calendar’ images are not provided by the authors) unfiltered. Smashing Magazine March 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) Smashing Magazine March 2010 Windows 7 Theme (no calendar) Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: March 2010 (original post) For details on these and to see...

Silverlight MVPs of the Year (2009)

This week at Microsoft we are hosting roughly 1,300 of our top community experts around the world in various technical competencies.  For Silverlight, we have about 80% of our group in attendance from all over the world. At the beginning of the year the Silverlight team asked our MVP group to identify the individuals within their group have done a lot for Silverlight community and that they would consider worthy of being named an ‘MVP of the year’ award. First to be clear, ALL of our MVPs are top notch and all have contributed significantly to...

Smashing Magazine February 2010 Windows 7 Theme

it’s that time again…beginning of a new month!  That means that Smashing Magazine has released their monthly wallpaper pictures again. As you could expect, February entries are full of a lot of Valentine type stuff.  Here are your February Windows 7 Theme Packs for the wallpapers though…including all images (note: some ‘without calendar’ images are not provided by the authors) unfiltered. Smashing Magazine February 2010 Windows 7 Theme (calendar) [58.2 MB] Smashing Magazine February 2010 Windows 7 Theme (without calendar) [51.8 MB] Smashing Magazine Desktop Wallpaper: February 2010 (original post)...

January 2010 Silverlight MVPs

Happy new year to all!  I hope you enjoyed a safe celebration whether that be playing a board game with friends, toasting the new year with some bubbly, throwing things at Ryan Seacrest on TV, or whatever. Each quarter, new MVP (Microsoft Most Valuable Professional) candidates are awarded.  January 2010 is the first awards of the year and so I present the new/moved/re-awarded Silverlight specific MVPs: Jeff Prosise – If you aren’t subscribed to Jeff’s blog, stop and do so now.  It’s filled with some great nuggest that are usually on the advanced ‘how’d he do that’ side...

Microsoft PDC09 and Silverlight Round-up

Well, PDC09 is over and it was a blast.  What a relief it is to finally be able to show the world what the Silverlight team has been working on since Silverlight 3.  Based on the feedback at the conference, people are excited to dig into the new bits and start building solutions.  As a round-up of resources from PDC, I’m putting some of my favorites here. Video Content For some of the PDC09 key Silverlight sessions, these are what I recommend: CL01 – Microsoft Silverlight 4 Overview (Karen Corby) ...

The Underground at PDC

PDC is coming…it’s only a few weeks away.  Are you going?  I am and I couldn’t be more excited.  I’m coming in Sunday and helping with a workshop on Monday.  Then the rest of the week will likely be a blur. If you are going (and even if you aren’t), there is one party you will not want to miss.  Last year "The Underground @ PDC” was a great party and gathering of geeks.  The Gu, Scott Guthrie, was there.  As was Don Box and Scott Hanselman dishing out the geek humor and flames toward one another.  It was great.  And...

Microsoft Store – engaging with consumers directly

Standard caveats apply: I’m a Microsoft employee and fanboy.  I’m not ashamed.  I will say though when the announcements of the Microsoft retail brick-and-mortar stores opening, I was skeptical…no doubtful.  I kept (and still do a bit) thinking to myself how are they going to compete with the likes of Best Buy and others?!  Nonetheless, I waited patiently to see the plans. I wouldn’t have to wait long as the first store opened up in Scottsdale, Arizona, USA.  Scottsdale is a neighboring town in the sprawl we call “Phoenix” (it’s about 40 mins from me in the QC).  When opening day...

Silverlight Audio Player for WordPress

As a follow-up to my Silverlight For WordPress plugin, I have just deployed Mark Heath’s Silverlight Audio Player as a WordPress plugin.  Thanks to Mark for changing his license to Ms-PL so that I could make this happen.  If you are a WordPress user and want to use Silverlight for audio playback, you use some WordPress macro language (in this case slaudio) and put it in.  The rendered output is like this: And when you click the play button it expands: Again, most of the actual Silverlight work is Mark’s, so be sure to...

Using Visual Studio 2010 for Silverlight development

Previously I made note of things about the release of Visual Studio 2010 beta 2 with regard to Silverlight development.  I’ve gotten a few questions about if people should start using it for Silverlight development.  Perhaps I can help provide you with the best information I can to make that decision…so here it goes. Go-live support Visual Studio 2010 and .NET Framework 4 both have “go-live” support as indicated in the license terms (which are available on the VS2010 download).  If you have never bothered yourself with previous go-live products at Microsoft you may not understand what that...

Congratulations to Q3 NEW Silverlight MVPs

Just a quick shout-out to congratulate the latest Silverlight MVPs to the program.  The Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional) program is a recognition program that is in place to recognize and reward those individuals who have been identified by individuals (peers, Microsoft staff, etc.) as experts in their technology field and global contributors to the technology.  As of today (01 OCT 2009) we welcome some new folks to the Silverlight group: Rick Barraza (@rickbarraza)– wicked interactive design/developer with kung-fu XAML skillz Bryant Likes (@bryantlikes)– great contributor to the...

Silverlight Firestarter Seattle videos online

Mithun just posted that the videos are now available online from the Silverlight Firestarter Seattle event.  You can view the videos here in WMV form, but I also took a quick stab at putting them together in a playlist using the Silverlight Expression Encoder templates.  Here they are: You can click the little icon in the upper right to see the playlist option and to navigate.  NOTE: The offline mode doesn’t seem to work and likely because I didn’t populate the playlist option with the sizes of the videos, sorry about that,...

It’s Silverlight week in Seattle

I’m a little late to the game posting information about it, but there is a plethora of Silverlight stuff to do this week in the Seattle/Redmond area this week.  Sleepless in Seattle…definitely not – Silverlight in Seattle baby! Allow me to interpret Adam’s vector goods… 14 Sep (tonight!): Jesse Liberty is presenting at the .NET DA user group meeting on .NET RIA Services. 15 Sep: Nerd Dinner!!!  Just a casual gathering of people who speak in acronyms and like food.  Bellevue Crossroads food court (awesome choices for anyone). ...

Silverlight feature suggestions

I’ve been doing a lot of asking and listening lately…to you, the Silverlight developers!  I’ve received a lot of positive feedback and “thank you for asking” comments and it has been real encouraging.  If you haven’t seen some of them, here’s some of my recent inquiries: Do you have a need to convert Flash applications (not just assets, but ActionScript)? How do you prefer to learn Silverlight (and how do you decide on choosing Silverlight)? Are you using the provided Silverlight Toolkit themes in your applications? If you...

Silverlight community samples – what do you want?

I normally hate short posts – but my friend John Papa put a poll up that I wanted to make sure gets some attention…please provide your opinion on this poll: What kinds of samples would you most like to see in a community Silverlight code sharing site? Help John out shape something useful! tags: silverlight, riaservices, ria, xaml, communityThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution By license.

Silverlight misconceptions, bad reviews, bad comparisons

UPDATE: Michael has posted a comment here and offered himself up to the gauntlet and apologized for his article.  He writes below: Tim did me a favor with this article, and his comments on Connected Internet. I have left the article up on Connected, because frankly, I deserve the lumps I get over it. Anyone who has spent more than 5 minutes talking with me, reading this blog, or listening to me on podcasts (Herding Code, Thirsty Developer, Misfit Geek) will know that I LOVE Microsoft.  I’m not ashamed to admit it and I’m not ashamed about my passion for the company...

More Silverlight application themes and fixes

When Silverlight 3 launched, we also published several additional application themes for the navigation and business application (for .NET RIA Services) templates.  I just uploaded two more themes from one of our designers, Corrina, to the Expression Gallery.  There are versions for both navigation application template as well as the .NET RIA Services business application template. Mediterranean Sun (RIA Services): Seeing Sound (RIA Services): Additionally, several fixes were made to the existing templates that some users reported.  I also added .NET RIA Services templates for those that were missing based on requests (Retro,...

Upcoming Silverlight events

I have the pleasure of being invited to participate in two Silverlight events coming up soon (one very soon).  These are a part of a “firestarter” event that is intended to get you familiar with certain technologies, in this case Silverlight, rather quickly and gain a better understanding for the overall platform offerings.  I’m excited to have been invited to participate in both the Atlanta and Seattle events. Silverlight Firestarter Atlanta The first one will be in Atlanta, Georgia on 22-August!  It’s been quite some time since I’ve been to Atlanta and I’m very happy to be going...

FloatableWindow source on CodePlex

I got enough feedback and suggestions that I figured it would be better just to put the code up on CodePlex rather than package zips on my blog :-).  Here it is: FloatableWindow project.  The latest build I have is up there which incorporates some feedback that I’ve received. UPDATE: If you like this idea VOTE FOR IT in the Silverlight Toolkit! Basically the ShowDialog() API operates the same way that ChildWindow.Show() does today.  No changes there, popup is used.  But when you just want some simple MDI type windows, use Show() which will not use Popup but rather add the elements...

Silverlight FloatableWindow update: start position and resizable

UPDATE: FloatableWindow is now on CodePlex for easier community contributions and management of latest source and builds.  FloatableWindow CodePlex Project. If you like this idea VOTE FOR IT in the Silverlight Toolkit! A while back I wrote a post where I refactored the Silverlight ChildWindow to create a non-modal window and I called it FloatableWindow (you can see why I’m not a good marketer…hey I could have called it Microsoft Silverlight ChildWindow Refactored Edition Express).  A few folks found it useful, for which I’m appreciative of the comments. My buddy Karl Shifflett decided to use it in Glimpse as the diagnostic window –...

Silverlight Coding Competition – win USD $10,000!

I was honored to be asked by ComponentArt to participate in a judging panel for their just now released 2009 Summer Silverlight Coding Competition.  The grand prize is USD $10,000.  Yes, that’s right: USD $10,000! ComponentArt is even kicking in 2 runner-up prizes of licensing to their products, which is also a sweet deal!  The contest is simple, and you are not required to use ComponentArt controls…in their words: Applicants are not required to use ComponentArt's products to enter the competition (or as the legal jargon requires us to say: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY). We'll obviously let you use our products...

Silverlight Best of MIX in Phoenix

I’ll be joining Dan Wahlin and Rob Bagby on 18 May in Phoenix for a Best of MIX event.  I’ll be presenting Silverlight 3 and building data-driven line-of-business applications.  All demo, all tech, all Visual Studio as my presentation tool :-). Come out and join us for the event! Best of MIX Agenda Monday, May 18, 2009 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM Wells Fargo Conference Center 100 West Washington Street, MAC S4101-017 Phoenix Arizona 85003 What’s New in Silverlight 3? ...

WEB09 – Silverlight and Blend in Auckland, New Zealand

I’ve just returned this past week from a trip to New Zealand with Arturo Toledo.  We were invited to come by Nigel Parker, who if you live in New Zealand and don’t know him…take a moment and subscribe to his site for information about what’s happening in that area. Our first stop in New Zealand was the WEB09 conference, which was organized by John Ballinger.  Prior to the actual conference, John managed to get all the speakers together for a reception and then a dinner afterwards.  Within those 4 or so hours of time, I’ve met more...

Arizona: Silverlight, MVC, MEF, WPF

It’s that time of year my friends in Arizona.  No, I’m not talking about when the air conditioners start get turned on, nor how the golf green fee rates are reduced or the snowbirds fly away…although those are good things as well. I’m talking geek fest time.  Mark your calendars: 26 May 2009 – 8:00 AM The community leaders in the area have organized another big event for your benefit.  So who is coming?  Here’s the rundown: Glenn Block – come see why you should get addicted to MEF.  Don’t know what it is?  That’s...

Learning WPF at the WPF LOB tour and XAMLFest events

There seems to be a lot of buzz around Silverlight lately and I admit, I like it :-).  But I also think that there is a huge misconception about Silverlight “replacing” WPF.  I get emails a lot about people asking me questions about Silverlight and after a bit of prodding, I see that their target platform for their application is Windows.  I then begin my rant on why it should be WPF if that is the target platform.  I’m usually met with some weird looks being that I do a lot of Silverlight, but I state my case accordingly. The...

Startups welcome here – get a jumpstart with software you need

Are you a startup organization?  Perhaps your the next greatest Silverlight control vendor or have a great app?  I want to help.  If you’re a Silverlight startup (or any startup really for that matter), reach out to me.  If you haven’t heard of BizSpark yet, you’re potentially missing out. If you meet the following criteria: privately held company in business less than 3 years generate less than USD $1 million in revenue you may qualify to get access to production licenses for development tools,...

Silverlight for WordPress

I’ve made no hiding the fact that my blog is build on Subtext and that I’m very happy with it right now.  Lately though my wife has been blogging more (that’s another story) and she also started her own business.  Being curious about all the WordPress love, I decided to start checking it out. Thankfully, the Web Platform Installer helped me get started on WordPress without any troubles at all and I was up and running on my Windows server (I didn’t want to start another hosting account anywhere).  I have to say, I really like what WordPress has done, especially...

Follow Silverlight updates on Twitter

I was just thinking the other day that I have some decent subscriber numbers here, but the same volume isn’t matched on my Twitter account.  For those who don’t know about Twitter, it’s a great short message service that kind of works like a global messaging system.  The best description I’ve heard has been: Twitter is like an ongoing conversation at a party.  Come in and listen/participate whenever you want with whomever you want.  Leave at your leisure.  Come back often if you’d like. I use Twitter to communicate along with friends, family and...

New Silverlight media experience for WindowsClient.net

Our team is working on a new design for the Silverlight Community Site and one of those aspects includes a new media experience for the online media/video portions of the Silverlight, Windows Client, and ASP.NET sites.  Today we rolled out the new experience first on the Windows Client community site.  It’s a subtle update but hopefully a welcome one. The older experience was a basic playback experience and was a Silverlight 1.0 application.  This update brings a few new things, but primarily is a Silverlight 2 player with some fun features to engage the viewer.  We’ve added some new...

Get inspired for web, photography, anything – SmashingMagazine.com

If you’re like me then you probably are more geekier than you are artistic.  I don’t think of myself AT ALL as a designer, but rather one who appreciates both good design and good user centric design.  You may look at this site here and say it doesn’t, and that is okay…I’m trying my best :-). But often I find that I need some tweaks, icons, templates, application design inspiration for a Silverlight application, whatever and just want to do it myself.  I’ve found the one place now where I start to look and be inspired: SmashingMagazine.com.  If you’ve...

Get a free ticket to MIX09 for having fun with Silverlight

Did I mention I’m going to MIX?  Will I see you there?  I could imagine that some have tight travel budgets, training budgets shrunk, yada, yada.  I’m telling you…if you are a Microsoft developer in the web and WPF space, you need to be at MIX09.  In an effort to help there are a bunch of ways to reduce some costs…here’s some: Register before 27 Feb 2009 with RSVP code: MIXLastChance and get $300 off the registration fee Share a creative picture about Internet Explorer (details and post yours here) and get...

POLL: Silverlight developer patterns

My friend Joel Neubeck is doing a survey on his site about what patterns people prefer for Silverlight development.  I’m very interested in these results as well, so if you have 2 seconds, please post your vote: Link: Poll: What separation pattern do you prefer in Silverlight development? tags: silverlight, mvvm, mvc, mvp, xaml, wpf, patterns, m-v-vm, viewmodelThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution By license.

My Blogging Toolbox

From time to time I’ve gotten a few inquiries as to what platform my blog is, what tools do I use, etc.  After a recent trip to Redmond and visiting with the Live Writer team, I got another inquiry while talking with a customer.  I thought I’d just spit out my thoughts. First, my platform.  Yes there are many platforms out there for blogging.  Probably the most popular are Wordpress and Blogspot.  I think those are popular because you can get up and running for free and have it hosted.  My wife and her friends mostly use Blogspot for...

Visual Studio tricks in video form

Over the past year Sara Ford had created a Visual Studio tip-of-the-day feature of her blog that eventually was aggregated pretty much everywhere and also in the Visual Studio community page displayed within the product itself!  The tips were plenty and great…a ton of gems that you may not have known before and a subtle reminder that there is so much more to learn. This year Scott Cate has decided to take this one step further.  He’s begun taking this tips concept and providing actual walk-through and visual demonstrations of these tricks.  One thing that I really like about...

I’m going to MIX09, will I see you there?

I have to admit, when the first MIX was happening it confused me.  Yet another conference?  In my usual pessimistic self I tried to convince people that it was wrong, blah, blah.  But I was wrong.  MIX has become of of my favorite conferences to attend.  Not only for the announcements that likely happen, but for the networking with industry folks in an area I’m most passionate about. Enough gushing though.  I’m going to MIX09.  Will you be there?  If you register before 13 Feb 2009, you’ll be able to get $400 off the registration fees!  Register on the MIX09...

Amazon S3 Publishing Plugin for Expression Encoder

One of the great things I like about some of our platform products is that they are building in extensibility more and more.  Take Windows Live Writer as an example.  It’s no secret on this blog that I’ve got a geek affair with that tool.  I use it daily and have customized it (via plugins) and my blogging platform (Subtext) to make it even more of a best experience for me for web authoring. Writing plugins for Writer has been a lot of fun and a great way to get the functionality I want/need into a workflow without having...

Give feedback on Windows 7 Beta

Now that Windows 7 beta has been released, there are quite a few people using it and I’ve seen pretty positive feedback about it.  I’ve been running it for about a month now and am impressed with the performance over Vista mostly.  All my programs continue to run fine (only exception is MagicDisc ISO mounter, but found another option – why isn’t ISO mounting a part of Windows – vote here?!?!?!) and I was able to set up a perfect Windows Deployment Server image to quickly image my laptops with the latest build, a slipstreamed version of Office, etc. NOTE ON...

SilverlightShow contest: Write and Win!

Got a great concept about Silverlight use, an application, utility, or just some knowledge you want to share but never had the place to put it?  The team at SilverlightShow have been having a contest they call Silverlight: Write and Win! and you can get some great Silverlight-related prizes such as Telerik and ComponentOne control licenses for Silverlight and WPF applications. You have to simply write an article about your concept (application, control, whatever) related to Silverlight 2 and provide the code (under an OSI approved license) and you’ll be entered – submit as many times as you want. ...

The Silverlight Application Corner

One of the things that we have heard in feedback is the need to surface more end-to-end samples.  While the atomic learning videos/samples are great as are more in-depth tutorials, there is still a desire to see how to package all these things up into a single application.  Seeing from start to finish helps absorb the learning process and see how these atomic things fit together and interoperate. Today we added the “application corner” to the Silverlight community site.  Yes, I know the name is less than exciting, but hey I’m not a super cool marketing person with unlimited...

New Silverlight Showcases and Feeds

If you want some great Silverlight information, be sure to subscribe to at least two feeds: Microsoft Silverlight Bloggers and Silverlight community feeds.  I’ve recently just added a bunch of great feeds to both of these including all the members of the Silverlight Toolkit team and some Silverlight MVPs such as John Papa. There are also a bunch of resources being added to the Silverlight community site over the next month.  We also added 27 new showcase entries to the Silverlight Showcase on the site.  One in particular that I think is interesting is a project Gantt representation done...

Øredev 2008 Summary

Sharing Knowledge.  That was the theme of the Øredev conference held this past week in Malmö, Sweden.  I was invited this year to participate in this conference in the Scandanavian area to speak on Silverlight technologies.  I am very humbled to have been invited.  This was truly a great conference and let me tell you my impressions. I’ve attended Microsoft’s PDC, TechEd, VSLive, DevConnections, etc.  I’ve got most of them all under my belt (as an attendee).  They are all good in their own regard.  The ones that are most interesting, however, are those that have an intensity about...

Flickr4Writer Service Pack update

This is a public service announcement for my Flickr4Writer project.  It was recently brought to my attention that Flickr has some privacy settings that users can opt-in for in their account to protect their images.  Some users felt that my plug-in for Writer was not honoring these settings.  Truly, I didn’t know about them.  You can read the thread on the discussion lists here if you are so inclined.  For me it came down to a couple of items: Flickr enables users to set a flag to prevent “blogging” of their...

Hey Startups – get some BizSpark

Remember DreamSpark, the program for students in higher education to get access to the developer tools and platforms from Microsoft at no charge?  How about some love for individuals in startup organizations trying to create the next great innovation in technology as a service, an application, some Silverlight love perhaps :-)? Done. A new program has just launched for startups.  From the site it is described as: Microsoft® BizSpark™ is a global program designed to help accelerate the success of early stage startups by providing key resources when they need it...

Silverlight 2 Launch Party in Portland

PDX baby.  That’s where I’m headed next week.  The Portland area user experience group (a SIG formed out of the Portland .NET user group) is hosting a Silverlight 2 launch party next week (11 NOV 2008).  They’ve invited me to attend and share some fun stuff about Silverlight 2.  I’m very excited to be going there because Portland is one of my favorite towns.  It has some of the best public transportation there and I think that makes for a great downtown experience and a lot of personality in the city. Aside from the city itself, there are some...

Using Silverlight AutoCompleteBox on custom types

The other day I wrote a simple little Silverlight application using a DataGrid to help navigate the TechEd DVD contents.  My code was admittedly quick and dirty.  I loaded up some data, and based on some events re-filtered and re-bound that data.  After thinking about it I am not sure why I didn’t just use some existing controls to help me do that work.  I found that AutoCompleteBox from the new Silverlight Toolkit would do this for me. One thing that the AutoCompleteBox does quickly is provide filtering for simple string data.  But what about custom types?  My data in the...

TechEd 2008 North America DVD Update

Thanks for all the feedback on the TechEd North America DVD issues with viewing the content once Silverlight 2 released.  In trying to do a good job providing a good user experience to viewing the content easily, the TechEd team created a Silverlight 2 Beta 2 player for the TechEd Online site as well as the offline DVD content. Obviously, when Silverlight 2 released and people installed the final version on their machines, the DVD Silverlight player stopped working and presented you with an “Install Silverlight” badge.  This was, of course, due to the use of Beta 2.  This doesn’t render...

Silverlight Toolkit Released – More controls!

Today at Microsoft PDC, Scott Guthrie demonstrated some of the new controls that have been provided as a part of the Silverlight Toolkit.  The Silverlight Toolkit was what was previously named the Silverlight Control Pack in the press release when the runtime was released.  This toolkit provides a set of controls and themes for Silverlight 2.  In this initial release, they are: AutoCompleteBox Chart DockPanel ...

Silverlight 2 Watermarked TextBox Control

In the early days of Silverlight 2, one of the included controls was the WatermarkedTextBox.  In Beta 2 the control was removed from the runtime for among other things, WPF compatibility.  The control source code was made available for people to look at as it was referenced in a few projects, namely ScottGu’s Digg sample application.  There was hinting about future plans but nothing concrete.  Now that Silverlight 2 is released, the control is not there :-).  I’ve gotten enough requests about it that I wanted to provide some action for you.  First, let me say that there...

SilverlightContrib releases Silverlight 2 Controls

Last week I had the pleasure of talking with the crew from the Herding Code podcast.  Among the questions was one about the open source community and Silverlight.  There was mention about MVCContrib and how that community sprouted almost instantly with the ASP.NET MVC initial releases.  I let the Herding Code crew know that I believe there already is a vibrant open source community around Silverlight and pointed to things like DevExpress’ AgDataGrid control which is free and provides source.  I also mentioned a project that did start right away around Silverlight 2 initial releases: SilverlightContrib.  The project, started by...

Silverlight.net updated code samples

With the release of Silverlight 2 many people faced the task of ensuring their applications/code written targeting Beta 2 was upgraded to release.  The team at the Silverlight community site was no different.  We’ve updated almost all the content so far, but I wanted to draw your attention to a few things. Get Started – http://silverlight.net/GetStarted As noted on this page for those getting started, there are links to Scott Guthrie’s 8 part example of building a Digg client in Silverlight (and then using that code for a WPF desktop application).  Scott has updated his code, so that...

Update your Silverlight Gallery Samples!

Did you know that the Silverlight community site has over 150 Silverlight 2 Beta 2 samples submitted by the community?!  These range from short samples of specific functionality to full-fledged applications that people can use.  I recently spoke of 2 of the multi-file uploader controls that were features in the gallery.  There is a lot of good information being shared by our community. WE NEED YOUR HELP – UPDATE YOUR SAMPLES! Today I sent around a note to those who I could identify who had submissions in the gallery with some information pointing them to Silverlight RC0 information...

Silverlight 2 UI Templates

One of the things I hear a lot about it wanting well-designed control templates/styles for developers to use in Silverlight (and WPF).  As someone with that missing creativity gene, I agree.  While we wait for some of these galleries to emerge (and designers to contribute), there is some hope for the rest of us today. For WPF developers, there has been a commercial resource available (not free) in the templates provided by XAMLTemplates.net.  They provide various styles available for purchase for WPF templates and styles. There also have been some emerging in the Silverlight.net community gallery (look for...

Writing text on a Path in Silverlight

One of the things that I’ve wanted to do since Silverlight released was two things with text, enable a Stroke and layout text on a Path.  Both of which in Silverlight 2 aren’t readily available.  Luckily we have a great ecosystem of developers and MVPs who love to extend our frameworks and create new capabilities for developers. Bill Reiss has done just that.  You may recognize Bill from some XNA and Silverlight gaming fame.  His game of Dr. Popper still remains my daughter’s favorite computer game!  Bill has created a new Silverlight user control he calls PathTextBlock control.  Bill...

Software Mockups using Balsamiq

Lately I’ve been putting more design thoughts onto paper.  I used to try to prototype in HTML a lot, but it just got too easy to draw it out.  I liked the feel of being ‘less tech’ when it came to mockups, etc.  I was turned on to this program recently called Balsamiq Mockups.  It is a software program that basically allows you to quickly mock up web/software designs using wire-frame elements.  I know there are other methods (please post your favorites in the comments), but there is something about this product that makes me like it...

MediaStreamSource sample for Silverlight

You may be reading the title and wondering what is MediaStreamSource?  MediaStreamSource is a piece of the Silverlight runtime that removes a the influence of a media file's container, giving developers direct access to APIs for manipulating encoded elementary audio and video streams. Huh? Basically it can enable you as the developer to implement file parsers/etc. in managed code instead of Silverlight, enabling support beyond the native built-in formats for media.  There hasn’t been much information about these types of topics, and I’d agree that for the mainstream, they may be a bit more advanced media scenarios for when...

Silverlight multi-file upload controls and patterns

One area where Silverlight can plat an interesting role for your web applications is wherever file uploading to your server needs to be done.  This may sound odd to think of it that way, but if you’ve ever done file upload in web apps (for larger sizes, chunking, etc.) sometimes it is no fun and involves a lot of Javascript.  There is a video demonstrating on how you can do file upload with Silverlight 2 and also helps demonstrate the OpenFileDialog API within the runtime. I remember seeing a multi-file uploader that Jose Farado had started back in Silverlight 1.1 days. ...

Podcamp, iJustine and Startup Weekend

Two great events are happening here in the Valley of the Sun (yes, it’s still 105°F outside here folks) are coming up soon that you should consider taking part in. Startup Weekend Phoenix Startup Weekend is a weekend long event (starting on Friday at about 6pm and ending on Sunday at 6pm) where local techies, entrepreneurs, project managers, or interested people of all types gather in teams to actually create companies that could be viable in today’s marketplace.  This isn’t just vapor, past Startup Weekends have actually gotten to the point of initial prototypes, branding, marketing strategies within...

Add mouse wheel support to ScrollViewer

As you may know, most wheel support is detected at the browser level.  In Silverlight, this makes adding mouse wheel support an interop action with the HTML host.  While people have implemented it, it has mostly been for the use of DeepZoom applications.  In fact, the latest DeepZoom Composer tool actually adds this support now if you choose to have a Silverlight project as a part of the output of the collection. But what about other controls, namely ScrollViewer?  Having content in ScrollViewer enables ScrollBar functionality but doesn’t automatically respond to mouse wheel actions.  Adam Cooper has solved this...

Silverlight Casual Game Series

Silverlight MVP and friend, Joel Neubeck, has started a series in the Expression Newsletter.  The first article is available now and is part of a 6-part series in building a casual game in Silverlight: Getting Started – Architecture / framework Movement and collision detection Design – Sprites, boards and dialogs Animations and sound Initialization and Deployment Advanced concepts (Physics, Multiplayer, Optimization)...

Some Silverlight effects libraries

While you can do a lot within Silverlight with effects, as demonstrated by techniques used like seen in Shine Draw, you may also want some helping hands to implement these.  It’s not always fun to write some code for when you just want to be able to drop in an effect on your application.  You want to concentrate on your application logic and get assistance in creating some of the visual effects. If you didn’t know, there are some libraries out there that can help.  I’ll highlight two of them here (if you know of more, please post in...

Silverlight in the Big Apple

In NYC this weekend and want to hang out and learn some Silverlight?  Some community leaders and Microsoft folk are putting on a Silverlight 2 Firestarter event this weekend on 13-SEP.  Shawn Wildermuth of the Silverlight Tour will be there for the keynote and giving some sessions as well.  It looks like some folks from Infragistics will be there as well…I’d imagine they might have some cool things to talk about! The event is free for anyone to attend and should be a good time hanging out with fellow geeks in NYC and learning what others are doing with...

Some Silverlight events coming up

I’m pretty excited about the upcoming Fall travels I have.  Fresh on the heels of a 3-day session with the entire Silverlight team this past week, I’m rejuvenated and ready to rock.  I’ve also got some travels coming up and hope to see some of you at them as well… Troubleshooting Data Services in Silverlight (09 SEP) Tomorrow I’ll be presenting a webcast with the goal of trying to help surface some of the more common ‘gotchas’ in dealing with accessing data in Silverlight.  Some of it may not be new to some, but there has been enough...

Silverlight resources for Flash developers

Two new resources came to my attention recently that could be helpful resources for Flash developers wanting to learn Silverlight.  The first has been out there for a bit actually, but the other is new.  Let’s start with the new one, Project Rosetta (video).  As Adam Kinney said this week while in meetings in Redmond, “because we need another web site.” Project Rosetta describes itself as: Project Rosetta is a site dedicated to helping designers and developers build applications in Silverlight while taking advantage of skills they already know. There are two articles...

Further evidence of Android’s possible failure

Earlier this year I wrote my thoughts on the current mobile scene and what troubles certain players more than others.  I made the assertion that Android will face the same troubles that Windows Mobile is challenged with.  That being that Google/Android are providing a platform and not a physical device.  I think it would be hard to argue that owning the complete platform and hardware is not a good idea.  Apple’s complete control of every aspect of the channel provides them with the ability to deliver in a somewhat more reliable fashion (except for the fact that Contacts suck and...

IE8 Beta 2 release – my TinyURL Accelerator

I first saw the accelerators (the artists formerly known as activities) during The Code Trip, when Woody created an IE8 activity for Wikipedia.  It was a convenient tool to have in your right-click toolbox on IE and I loved it (and still do). Well, now that IE8 Beta 2 is out, I decided (well, my selfishness decided) that I should create an activity accelerator for something that I use often so I introduce you to: IE8 Accelerator for TinyURL.  So with a little XML, it was done.  Seriously, like < 5 minutes.  I ran into one problem...

Startup Weekend – A great idea

A new (and great) idea has been making its way across the country.  It’s called Startup Weekend.  What is it?  From their site: Have you ever wondered what a group of highly talented and motivated people could accomplish in a weekend? Could they start a company from concept to completion? Startup Weekend answers that question and more. A unique three-day experience, Startup Weekend brings the best and brightest people together in a local office space to select the concept, break into teams, and develop the product, marketing and revenue model.  ...

Troubleshooting data/service access in Silverlight

A while back I pondered doing a “live” debug session with people who were/are working with Silverlight 2 and data access via services, etc.  I really like a live concept because it allows people to ask real questions and feels more conversational than a one-way presentation.  After some consideration, I’m not sure I could quite guarantee the environment I was looking for to accomplish this type of style. So as a second best, I’ve set up a webcast: Troubleshooting Silverlight Data Access.  I hope to keep the question channel open during the webcast though and answer as many questions as possible. ...

Visual Studio SP1 and Silverlight tools

Today Visual Studio 2008 has released SP1 which not only brings some fixes, but also is an added value service pack, bringing some new functionality to WPF as well as enabling a “client” deployment pack of the .NET framework so that those deploying .NET framework with your client applications can have a much smaller footprint (by about 80+%). With the release of SP1 for Visual Studio 2008 today, the Silverlight team has also updated their tools for Silverlight 2 Beta 2.  Read again: a tools update for Silverlight 2 Beta 2 is needed and available for you.  If you install Visual...

ReMIX UK – 18 SEPT

Well, I wish I was going to this event: ReMIX UK!  For one, it would be starting the day of my birthday and would be a great birthday treat!  Secondly, I would be able to meet up with my fellow escamoles chaps and maybe take in some local cuisine instead. If you are in the UK, or for some reason really wanted to see the current value of the US dollar, make sure you head to ReMIX UK!  The lineup is pretty incredible when you look at it…here’s some Microsoft favorites: ...

Woohoo! Subtext 2.0 released!

I’ve just completed my upgrade to my site of the official 2.0 release of Subtext, the Open Source blogging engine that I use to manage content on this site.  You can read the full announcement from grand poohba Haack himself here. I’m loving this release because of the improvements made but also a little selfishly because the modifications I’ve made to my own fork I’ve been using have made it into this release!  These modifications really make this the best platform for me when using Live Writer.  This may not make a difference to a lot of you,...

Some Silverlight ecosystem updates

I’ve had a couple things sitting in my inbox for a week or so and rather than call them out individually and take up your precious aggregation space, I’ll summarize them here. 3rd Party Silverlight Controls Got a note from Valentin about the roadmap for the Telerik Silverlight controls.  As they’ve previously noted, they are planning a set of controls: Window, Menu, TreeView, TabControl, PanelBar, Cube, ComboBox, Upload, Calendar, DatePicker, NumericUpDown, MediaPlayer, Range Slider, ProgressBar, WrapPanel, DockPanel, UniformGridPanel.  Right now it looks like they are incorporating the feedback provided and doing some polish work like adding Blend tool support for skinning, etc. ...

Play Olympic Games in Silverlight

With the Olympic ceremony only days away and being able to enjoy the Olympic experience online via Silverlight, why not get a little excited and play some casual games, Olympic style.  All of these were build using Silverlight and the Popfly game creator: Torch Lighting Soccer Track and Field Archery Long Jump ...

IronNails = Silverlight + IronRuby + Patterns

If you already pay attention to the IronRuby dev group and are on the distribution list, apologies for the dupe.  I’ve just got back from a camping trip and rifling through all my emails now.  I checked in on the IronRuby group and noticed a new project emerging from someone. It’s from Ivan Porto Carrero and he calls it IronNails.  It was previously called something else (quite frankly I liked the other name better myself) but there was already a project named after his chosen name.  So alas, IronNails it is!  Ivan describes this as: ...

Silverlight tip: shortcut simple properties

I’ve seen the rumbling a few times now about property setting in Silverlight.  The rumblings are along the lines of “why do I have to use SetValue for setting simple properties like the x/y positioning?”  To those points, I agree from a fundamental standpoint.  From a technical standpoint SetValue is there and serves a great purpose for providing a common way of setting properties on XAML elements regardless of the element.  As a developer, I like it actually.  I do, however, see the point about wanting to set simple properties and it just looks a little verbose.  Take for instance...

Making SL2 Video Player an Encoder Template

Now that the Silverlight 2 Video Player is available from Codeplex, I wanted to make it a template for Expression Encoder.  I’ll attempt to articulate the steps below.  It’s actually pretty trivial.  In fact in the current incarnation, you have to throw some extra stuff in there you may not need :-). Step 1 – Creating the template folder While I’ve covered this in previous posts and this is also well documented in the Encoder SDK documentation. First you’ll navigate to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Expression\Encoder 2\Templates\en and you’ll see the existing template folders.  The folders do not represent...

Updates to Amazon S3 and Silverlight

After posting my sample implementation of accessing Amazon Simple Storage Solution (S3) via Silverlight, I reflected quickly and also chatted with some AWS engineers. Cross-domain Policy One thing that you should never do is just deploy a global clientaccesspolicy.xml file blindly.  Often times in samples, we (I) do this.  I need to be better about this guidance to be honest, so I’ll start here.  As an example, for the S3 cross domain policy file, we really should add some additional attributes to it to make it more secure.  Since we know it is a SOAP service, we can...

How about some LIVE Silverlight service debugging?

I’ve got a thought lately and curious if I’m thinking crazy.  You see, probably the most asked questions I get are around working with services within Silverlight.  Although I’ve got some helpful (at least I think they’re helpful) posts on the subject: Silverlight, 404 and some tool help Updates for Beta 2 Working with Syndicated Data Calling WCF/ASMX Services Calling REST Services Cross-domain policy files ...

Updating Silverlight.js and Firefox 3

I’m hoping this post will help explain a few things with regard to Silverlight detection scripts that some sites may be using.  This is related to the silverlight.js Javascript file that was deployed with a lot of Silverlight 1.0 applications/sites and is also available as a part of the Silverlight 2 SDK tools. What the heck is this Silverlight.js you speak of? Simply put, Silverlight.js is a helper file which enables Web sites to create advanced Silverlight installation and instantiation experiences.  It was a resource file that was initially shipped along side several templates and helper projects to aid in the detection...

Silverlight community controls contest

I suspect we’ll be seeing more of these efforts for Silverlight and I love it.  In fact, INETA will be sponsoring the 2008 INETA Silverlight Challenge soon, so you should sign up for more information about that as well.  But until then… But until then, check out what some of the community MVPs and leaders are doing on their own!  They’ve started the Silverlight Control Builder Contest ‘08.  Two main organizers (Page Brooks and Dave Campbell) have put some time and thought into how they can get the community excited about developing solutions for the community and alas...

FeedReader web part 3.0.0.2

For those of you who use my RSS FeedReader Web Part for SharePoint, it has been updated into an ‘official’ release for the project.  Version 3.0.0.2 is now the latest release.  It incorporates all the changes from our team’s contributor, Ryan – thanks Ryan!!!  You can read the checkin on the Codeplex site or review this previous post for Ryan’s checkin notes. As always, the source code is included on the site, licensed under the Ms-Pl. There has been some emails/work items/debate over the installer.  The installation is two parts: ...

Some new Silverlight videos

Some new videos just got posted to the Silverlight community site.  Topics included: IsolatedStorage usage HTML DOM Integration Dynamic Assembly/XAP loading Working with Syndicated Data As always, feedback and ideas are welcome.  Ben’s been leaving some great comments here on suggested topics and I’d love to see more.  I’ll be starting a new ‘series’ soon…more to come on that in a week’s time. As a reminder, these videos are meant...

svn commit my_contribution_to_OSS

As I patiently awaited, here’s what was presented to my browser: I’ve made my first official “commit” to an open source project that I didn’t start.  I feel good.  I feel like cracking open a Mt. Dew and going crazy.  Honestly though it does feel good (and fun).  My blog engine I use is Subtext.  It’s the blog engine I’ve used almost exclusively (I actually started with .Text before scottw sold out went to Telligent to make Community Server.  I kid of course, Scott is a great guy, and very smart.  But when .Text was seemingly going to get stale, others...

Silverlight Streaming upgraded to Beta 2

The Silverlight Streaming service has been upgraded to support Silverlight 2 beta 2 applications. As a note to customers who were previously hosting Beta 1 applications for test purposes, as beta 1 is no longer a supported test platform for SLS.  Authors should update/upload their applications using the latest Silverlight 2 bits.  These are available (with the tools) from the Silverlight community site. Silverlight 1 applications hosted on SLS are not affected by this upgrade and still supported of course. Remember that you can also now directly upload a XAP file to SLS using the Manage...

Silverlight 2 Media Player project now open source

Over the past few months Joel and I have been back-and-forthing modifications to his original great idea and goal “build a re-sizable video player using no custom user controls, but instead leveraging controls styles and templates.”  Joel started in Silverlight 2 Beta 1 and implemented using the style method (aka ‘the MIX model’) available at that time.  I took it and added some functionality of scaling and startup parameters.  After the VisualStateManager model for styling was released, this project made perfect sense to demonstrate those abilities and thus I transformed the great styling work that Joel did into the VSM...

Microspotting

I’ve been watching Ariel’s blog for a while and really like the insight.  What is it? Microspotting, where she describes “Like the paparazzi, but for geeks.” I would say similar to the core tenet of Channel 9, Microspotting has the intent of turning the looking glass inward to get some profiles of key individuals you might recognize within Microsoft.  What is great is that the story is augmented by another of Ariel’s talents: photography.  She’s pretty good and I’ve enjoyed the photos that accompany the profiles and stories. From her site: My name is Ariel and Microspotting...

Free Silverlight 2 training CD

The team att AppDev is providing a free learning CD-ROM for Silverlight 2.  They are providing it as a CD-ROM or download and said it represents a $115 value for their training…but are providing it now for free! If you are familiar with MSDN Magazine, ASPNETPro, and other online/offline publications, the name Dino Esposito might sound familiar.  Dino is the one providing the training walkthroughs for you in this offering.  It includes roughly 3 hours of training on Silverlight 2 content.  Get it now!  Thanks AppDev! UPDATE (30 JUN 2008): The team at AppDev has heard some feedback and has altered their offer. ...

Getting started with Silverlight 2

Now that beta 2 is out and some of the features or more solid, and a majority of the breaking changes have been announced, there is no excuse to hold back anymore.  Oh yeah, and there is a commercial go-live license available now, so no more excuses :-). So where to get started?  Well you should first head over to the Silverlight community site and visit the Get Started section.  There you will find a rather simple formula to get started: Download/install the tools ...

MIX Essentials Mexico and unique cuisine

Well, I have about 3 hours until I leave this little city called Mexico City.  Sarcasm of course, did you know there are roughly 25 million people in Mexico City.  I didn’t.  It is amazing.  Traffic, however, is something to be desired.  I’m told that a 3 mile trip at times could take 1hr, 30 minutes.  Maybe I should stop complaining about my commute when I do it?  No, it still sucks. Anyway, on to business.  Yesterday I attended and spoke at the MIX Essentials Mexico conference.  These events are happening worldwide and if there is one coming up...

Free Silverlight DataGrid with source code!

Um.  Whoa. Okay, DevExpress rocks.  I think this will be very well received by the community and you’ll have to watch their page for when it is available and to get your license. From their site: As the release of Silverlight draws near, DevExpress has invested the engineering resources needed to deliver a feature-rich grid control for Silverlight. Not just a "preview" of what is possible with Silverlight, the AgDataGrid Suite was developed to fully exploit the power and flexibility of the platform… It looks like it will support pretty much everything you’d expect in a DataGrid and more…wicked cool.  Congratulations and thank you...

Silverlight and the VisualStateManager

If you’ve heard the news about Silverlight 2 Beta 2 and Expression Blend 2.5 (June 2008 preview), you will notice something else in addition to being able to skin your controls easier.  Remember how you may have had to create different states for your element using “MouseOver State" and then create storyboards to transition to states?  There’s now a better way. Enter VisualStateManager. Let’s take a look and see if we can simplify this down a bit a basic understanding.  Let’s use something that most everyone should be able to relate to with states: Button.  A button has...

Skinning Silverlight controls just got easier

This has been one of the features that I’ve been excited about for a while since I heard we were changing it.  With the release of Silverlight 2 Beta 2 and the updated preview of Expression Blend 2.5 (June 2008), skinning and styling controls within Silverlight gets a bunch easier. When Silverlight 2 Beta 1 was released there was the possibility of styling/skinning controls.  It wasn’t impossible, but perhaps a bit obfuscated to the eye for people with short attention spans like myself.  You can read more about those methods here and here.  WPF designers were...

Reading data and RSS with Silverlight and no cross-domain policy

So you want to read an RSS/Atom feed on the interwebs and saw the SyndicationFeed class you could use in Silverlight to give a nice RIA display of the syndicated data.  Great, no problem right, just wire up an WebClient, point it to the RSS feed on something like http://silverlight.net or something and boom, done.  Wait, what’s this 404 Not Found error?  In most cases this is going to be a result of a cross-domain issue.  If you haven’t started working with services yet, Silverlight requires a cross-domain policy file to be in place to access remote data not on...

Download Windows Live Writer June 2008 Preview

Hot off the press, a new drop of Windows Live Writer was just released.  Get it here.  This is one of my favorite tools from Microsoft and the update brings a few new changes. First, I’m happy to report that Flickr4Writer and S3Browser still work fine and require no adjustments.  The other thing announced today from the Writer team is an updated SDK.  This new SDK includes a new type of plugin which enable plug-in activity for pre- and post-publish events.  Some of you following me on Twitter may have noticed something every so often that said...

MIX Essentials Mexico!

This week I’ll be traveling to Mexico City to meet developers and designers at the local MIX Essentials (English translation here – funny that RIA gets translated to LAUGHS) event.  I’ll be presenting two sessions there this week.  I was fortunate enough to be asked to kick-off the conference talking about building RIAs with Silverlight 2.  I’m particularly excited about this as I have some things to show that haven’t really been shown broadly yet.  I will also be speaking on working with data in Silverlight 2 later in the day.  This session will cover working with services, servers,...

SnagIt and PNGOut

I searched and didn’t immediately find anything, so I’m partly doing this for my own mental archive but also for others who might want this feature. First, I use two tools for snapshot capturing.  When I want a quick snapshot with no annotation, I use WinSnap, which rocks the hizzouse.  For when I need annotation (arrows, highlighting, etc.) I use SnagIt from the makers of Camtasia (Betsy Weber rocks).  Both of these tools are incredible and I’ve purchases full licenses for both and haven’t regretted it at all. In WinSnap, there is a feature that allows you to...

RIApalooza wrap-up

I just finished up a day attending the Chicago RIApalooza event in, well, Chicago.  First, I must say that I love cities with great mass transit systems.  I’ve said this before and I keep threatening myself to move to one. For this event I paired up with a super designer Corrina Barber.  Corrina works as a user experience designer at Microsoft, is wicked smart and was a perfect compliment to this event.  Most of the attendees at RIApalooza I believed to be interactive developers, so most having a knack for design.  I figured rather than a developer...

Innovative use of Silverlight and DeepZoom

Take a few minutes and look at this video of Jose Fajardo re-demonstrating one of his ReMIX features shown using Silverlight and DeepZoom.  Are you kidding me?!  Seriously, Jose has a great imagination and an incredible sense for effectively demonstrating things. In this video he answers questions posed to himself like “what if all web images were DeepZoom-able?” and “what if all the documents on the web were DeepZoom-able?”  Then he gets crazy and suggests that people could collaborate with a DeepZoom image and demonstrates this using a Silverlight chat experience built using network sockets.  I love his context...

Silverlight Flickr Badge

Taking another cue from some great stuff Joel is doing, I liked his implementation of the ‘Leopard Screen Saver’ but wanted to make it more ‘real’ for me.  So I wired it up to my Flickr account.  Result here (using Silverlight Streaming): I only had to change a few things. First, in the Page_Loaded event, I removed the timer start function.  This was because with interacting with Flickr it was going to be async.  I didn’t want the timer to start until I knew the image collection was built. My BuildCollection function now looks like this: private void BuildCollection() { // get...

RIApalooza – I’ll be there!

I’m very excited to have the opportunity to attend the RIApalooza event in Chicago in a few weeks (31 MAY).  What is RIApalooza? RIApalooza promises a platform agnostic and "PowerPoint-Free" zone, which means we are going to forgo the boring marketing pitches in favor of talking technology. RIApalooza is about creating Rich Internet Applications; how to go about building them and what is being built.  source: riapalooza.com I love the PPT-free zone aspect of it.  I loving having the maximum time to show some real working code, answer questions and see what...

SharePoint guide for Visual Studio Extensions released

In February, the SharePoint team released a Visual Studio extensions kit for SharePoint development.  Just recently they released a user guide complete with samples and walkthroughs.  The sections include: Starting out in SharePoint Development Walkthrough of the VS extensions Team Site project Blank Site project List Definition project Web...

Write Silverlight, win XBOX

Want a Silverlight-branded XBOX console?  Yeah, me too, that would be cool.  Well, there isn’t one of those, but there is a chance for you to show your Silverlight prowess and win some cool stuff. The RIA development portal at DevX is currently running a contest (which ends next week, yikes, hurry!) for creating games in Silverlight 2.  The contest seems relatively simple: Step 1: Create wicked cool game in Silverlight 2 Step 2: Host it on Silverlight Streaming How simple is that…oh yeah, except for the ‘creating game’ part.  There are a few...

Foxit PDF Previewer Security Update

Hello readers!  If you are a Foxit user, please update your reader software to the latest version ASAP.  A recent exploit was found by a security research firm and Foxit turned around an update to their reader within 24 hours.  Bravo to the Foxit team for being very agile and getting this rectified. After some further research and discussion with the development team it was found that the ActiveX component used in the PDF Preview Handlers might also be vulnerable.  To reconcile this, Foxit has issued a patched (and updated) version of the ActiveX control for the preview handlers. ...

Skinning an embeddable Silverlight 2 media player

While Silverlight 2 brings us great capabilities as .NET developers and opens many opportunities for creating rich clients in the browser, it still supports strong media features that have been available since the initial release of Silverlight.  The ability to deliver efficient, high quality media in the browser is an increasing need in a lot of sites producing content for their members.  Traditional ‘podcasts’ which were historically audio-only, are moving increasingly faster to richer media.  This is nothing new of course, but being able to quickly distribute the media on your sites efficiently and provide methods for your users to...

Silverlight and Media Encoding

While you may not personally work with a lot of media solutions in your Silverlight application, it is nice to know the quality is there when you need it.  Silverlight supports the VC-1 codec for media which provides a standards implementation for high quality media.  I would imagine that most developers probably don’t know/care what all that means.  But if you are deploying a high-touch media solution (i.e., online TV, etc.) you want that high quality. Our resident media expert, Ben Waggoner, just put up a great (and detailed) post about some ‘high-touch encoding’ techniques he uses and does some comparisons...

Rich Text Editor for Silverlight 2

For Silverlight 2, we finally have some native controls to leverage.  Most of them are to aid in input scenarios.  The text input, however, is currently scoped to be plain text input.  Some have desired a richer input control.  You knew it wouldn’t be long before someone in the community stepped up to the challenge.  Christopher Husse has done just that. Enter: Silverlight rich text editor. He posts a detailed description of all the capabilities on Michael Syncs blog.  The effort is also posted on Codeplex for you to peruse. Here is what he calls the ‘incomplete feature list’: ...

Some minor Subtext enhancements

This blog runs on SubText.  I heart SubText.  I know there are others out there but for me SubText has met most of my needs.  And when it hasn’t I modify it.  Which brings me to this post.  There was a thread on an email list I belong to about Windows Live Writer (I heart Live Writer too :-)) and categories (adding new categories on the fly).  This got me to crack open the source and hunt.  Alas, there was no support for this.  I’ve been ranting about WordPress API support for SubText on the developer list and I think...

Quarterly Stickholder’s Meeting

Tonight my wife is holding the Quarterly Stickholder’s Meeting of the Cortina Babysitting Co-op. Yeah, WTF? (as Steve Harman would say, ‘wow, that’s fantastic!’) Last year I wrote about building community within your community and discussed the various ways that my wife has rallied others in our local community to get to know each other, stay involved and serve each other.  It really has been amazing and it has created a community that makes it hard for anyone to leave.  I recently went through some thoughts of moving and we couldn’t find anything weighing heavier than the friends we’ve gained in our...

An awesome Silverlight Digg mashup

I know ScottGu already did a good sample showing integration with Digg and Silverlight, but check out what Jose did! Jose does a great job explaining each of the components here and what he is doing to develop this application.  A good experience demonstration with a lot going on there with Silverlight.  I really encourage you to check out this read and subscribe to Jose’s feed – he’s what I’d call ‘wicked good.’ tags: silverlight, jose fajardo, cynergy, digg, wpf, xaml, ria

My Silverlight application cannot access my service!

I’ve started a dialog with a few of you about getting Silverlight and service integration working, specifically with ASP.NET web services (and even WCF ones).  A few have downloaded some of my samples, but others have started from scratch.  A few have reported getting some interesting errors, ASYNC_blahblah and NotFound errors specifically.  While this was boggling my mind (as I wasn’t getting them), a reader’s comments pointed me along the lines of something…he mentioned “maybe it is because my web service is ASP.NET 2.0 and not 3.5” – of which that shouldn’t be the case, so I went to test...

Cross domain in Silverlight Streaming

In my previous post about cross-domain policy files I received some comments about whether or not cross-domain access is allowed on Silverlight Streaming.  I think really this is two questions that I'll try to clarify here. What is Silverlight Streaming? For those who don't know, Microsoft provides anyone with an account to "stream" Silverlight applications for free.  We'll give you 10GB of space to put your Silverlight applications.  There are some limitations, which you can read about in the service.  The "streaming" name has confused some.  It isn't only a "where can I put media files" location, but is a service to...

Ik kom naar België voor MIX Essentials!

Je viens en Belgique pour MIX! In one of my previous posts I made reference to the MIX Essentials event happening in Belgium later this month (24 APR).  Well, it turns out that I will be there!  I'll be speaking on Silverlight 2 and creating rich applications and am joining the company of Gil Cleeren and Catherine Heller...oh yeah and Ballmer (I tried to catch a ride with him, but couldn't cash in my frequent flyer miles).  My session will provide an overview of everything new in Silverlight 2 and how you can start building your applications using it...

Anaheim Silverlight presentation

Firs, thank you for all that came to the presentation in Anaheim.  The room was full, and hopefully you learned something while there (and hopefully it was along the lines that video in text boxes might not be good design, but is doable :-)). I got a bunch of really great questions and concerns and hopefully answered all of them that were asked.  I saw many more hands lifted than we could get to, so if you have more questions, feel free to send them to me, or join the forum discussions as well!  The Silverlight community site is a great...

My new role on the Silverlight team

I've been with Microsoft now for over 3 years and have loved every minute of my time here.  For the time leading up to being hired at Microsoft, it was a professional goal of mine to work for the company.  Fanboy?  Sure, call me whatever you want.  I prefer to just call it passion.  I joined as a developer evangelist for my community (an area we call desert mountain which spans Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, and Montana).  This was an easy thing to say yes to because everything I learned I learned from being a part of...

Foxit Preview Handler for XP

Ever since I released my version of the Foxit PDF Preview Handler, I've been flooded with comments about building a version that works for Windows XP.  You see XP doesn't have the preview host that Vista has built into the operating system. Well, I finally had some time to hunt down some code and get it working, thanks to the help of Ryan Gregg from the Outlook team.  I released the sample code I used as a base for this as a part of our Code Trip project.  You can view my short screencast explaining one of the core pieces here...

Write code for a chance at an XBOX

One of The Code Trip sponsors, InnerWorkings, has teamed up to have a coding challenge for developers.  This is open to everyone to participate.  The winner gets an annual subscription to InnerWorkings as well as an XBOX 360 game console. If you aren't familiar with InnerWorkings, consider this a shameless plug.  I really do believe in their product as it is a unique learning experience from what we traditionally have (i.e., lab manuals with step-by-step instructions).  They have a wide catalog of topics including ASP.NET, WCF, WPF, Silverlight, CSS, etc. for organizations to choose from.  You really need to check them...

IM UPPIN YR RUBY

The MountainWest RubyConf 2008 is upon us just 2 weeks away in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Unfortunately I'm not going to be able to be there given my travel with The Code Trip.  IronRuby, however, was able to be a sponsor of this year's conference as a Gold Sponsor.  This sponsorship is one part that enables video production of the conference for afterwards as well as a few other things.  The organizers have done a great job getting great sponsors to make this happen, and IronRuby is grateful to be a part of that. One thing that was recently released was...

Get a slice of MIX with Quark and me.dium in Boulder, Colorado

Our current route on The Code Trip takes us to Boulder, Colorado on March 18 to the Boulder .NET User Group!  I'm really excited about this stop in Boulder, CO as we've managed to get some help from great partners to demonstrate some very cool developer stuff they are working on. Specifically, Quark and me.dium will be there to talk to the group.  Quark will be showing us some stuff they've been working on for WPF and Silverlight.  me.dium is a company that I met at MIX08 last week that were showing off some great stuff they've done with Internet Explorer...

Awesome Silverlight Samples

I just saw two links that I simply have to promote as they are very helpful to people doing Silverlight development and one specifically with ASP.NET. The first is a site on silverlight.net (you should bookmark this site as a resource and subscribe to all the feeds), there is now a Silverlight 2 Beta 1 control sample page, which hosts all the new Silverlight controls on the site.  It shows some different usage of all the controls: Very cool to see all the controls implemented in one section, play around with them and see different styles in some as well. The second link...

Amazon S3 Browser for Live Writer

For about a year now I've been using Amazon S3 services.  Mostly I'm using it for image storage for my blog and web site.  I decided to stop using Flickr for screenshot stuff and keep it to 'photographs' when I can.  I signed up for an S3 account and have been using it for screenshot type stuff since then.  If you don't know, S3 is a service that basically enables 'object' storage in the cloud.  An object can be anything really, but I'm treating it like a remote host for images. The one thing Amazon doesn't provide themselves is a tool...

Calling Javascript functions from Silverlight 2

When working with Silverlight 2, most will be working with managed code (c#, vb, etc.).  But likely people are working with Silverlight as an additive value to their web application, providing some enhanced user experience to an application.  there may be times where you will still need to call back into the hosting html context.  For then, you'll want to be familiar with two objects HtmlDocument and HtmlPage.  Both of these objects provide access to the page context hosting your silverlight control.  If you need to seek things in the HTML DOM, you could use the HtmlDocument class.  For example,...

The Code Trip has left the building...

We're off!  Just minutes ago The Code Trip left the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas en route to our first stop in Salt Lake City.  It's going to be a late night of coding and editing of some video.  Now that we've officially left, I'll share the actual pictures of our bus so you can be on the lookout for us: Tomorrow (late tonight) we roll in to Salt Lake for the combined .NET community user group meeting at the Franklin Covey building.  We're going to spend 2 hours talking about what we saw at MIX08.  We've got a...

The Code Trip begins...Silverlight Tour redux

Wow, it's been a few months now since I thought about doing a road trip talking about the next wave of technologies.  I originally thought it would be the "Silvertour" but we've now actually made it happen.  I can tell you that the behind the scenes of this has been a long process.  It seems so simple and I can hear the people now saying 'why was it so hard, c'mon you are Microsoft and have zillions of dollars.'  Sure, maybe that is true about a big company, but that's also the point.  We are a company of companies and...

Silverlight for Sharepoint

I've gotten a few requests from internal local sales teams, Sharepoint professionals and developers about how to implement Silverlight in Sharepoint.  I usually try to explain that since Sharepoint is essentially an ASP.NET application it is relatively simple to implement.  Of course, that usually doesn't help :-).  What helps is some documentation and samples that show how you would use Silverlight to enhance a Sharepoint experience. As a part of the Software+Services Blueprints series, a new bundle has been made available to download to provide guidance and source code to help provide some information.  In the blueprint you'll get: ...

Open Spaces @ MIX08

Along with some of my compadres, Josh Holmes and Peter Laudati, we're helping our MIX team member Drew Robbins organize the Open Space @ MIX area.  What is it?  Well, sort of whatever you want it to be.  If you've never been to an Open Space event format before there are some things you should know... Four principles of Open Space: Whoever comes are the right people to be there Whatever happens is the only thing that could have happened ...

Silverlight 2 with Expression Blend

From the 'does the guy ever sleep' category, ScottGu enlightens us all again with a very great tutorial on using Expression Blend 2.5 (March preview coming soon) to work with Silverlight 2 content. Scott walks through a tutorial on using the design-time features of Expression Blend 2.5 and some tips along the way to produce a chat-like application using Silverlight: Definitely worth a look to study before MIX.  Someone might want to pull Scott aside about the font choice though... tags: silverlight, mix, mix08, scottgu, expression, expression blend, silverlight 2, comic sans

Media Center Plugin: MyNetflix

Are you a Netflix customer and have a Media Center PC?  Check out what one of our Media Center MVPs re-birthed.  Anthony Park, a Media Center MVP, has regenerated a project from back in 2004 (originally developed by Ryan Hurst) and released MyNetflix v2.1. I'm not a Media Center nor Netflix user but the user interface is impressive and done very well to look like a part of the overall Media Center experience.  Here's a view of your Netflix queue: You can see other screenshots of browsing 'top' categories, movie details and he's also now incorporated 'watch now' information as well. Great work...

Intellisense for Virtual Earth API

When developing Virtual Earth applications I find myself always having the SDK documents open in the background for reference.  While this isn't a bad practice, I've historically only used them for parameter reference, etc.  I longed for the time that I could get cheater help intellisense for the Virtual Earth API.  When Visual Studio 2008 came out with Javascript intellisense, I figured the day has come.  But unfortunately, the Javascript intellisense isn't enabled for external (external==not-the-same-app-domain) files.  The thing about the implementation of the Javascript intellisense in VS2008 is that you can just make a reference to a file for...

lang.net talks online

if you are a language nut, you'll like this.  the Lang.NET symposium just posted all the talks from the recent gathering.  they are available online and you can view them here (presented in silverlight).  it's quite a line up of people...here's a sampling: anders hejlsberg paul vick wez furlong tomas petricek peli de halleux ...

students can get developer and designer tools for free

bill gates announces on channel8 a program called 'DreamSpark' which is enabling students of higher education to obtain microsoft developer and designer tools for no charge! over at the channel8 downloads page you'll see what is available: visual studio professional, expression studio, windows server 2003 standard, and xna game studio.  wow.  for now this is available in United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, China, Germany, France, Finland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Belgium.  the program looks to bring more countries on in the future so check back. there is a student verification process that you have to go through and some of the...

phoenix silverlight user group

i was able to make it to the phoenix silverlight user group last night (2 separate trips downtown, yikes) and had a good time chatting with everyone there.  i understand that there will NOT be a separate march meeting because it essentially falls very close to when scott guthrie and others will be coming to town.  the group is recommending that people attend that to learn the latest and greatest about silverlight 2 right out of MIX!  we had a good discussion about various things.  mike palermo showed a couple of things he'd been working on including a simple game...

free silverlight workshop in dallas

looks like the silverlight tour is giving a free ride for a half-day session on silverlight in dallas.  i've sat in on one of the early silverlight tour stops before silverlight even was officially released.  i can only imagine that it has gotten more exciting as time goes by. the dallas event is limited to 32 attendees, so register asap if you can make it.  this free session looks to discuss: Why should I care about Silverlight What is Silverlight? ...

silverlight 1.0 game on miniclip.com

miniclip.com now has a silverlight 1.0 puzzle game to their catalog.  this is pretty good to see among the massive catalog of casual games they offer.  this game is built using silverlight 1.0 and is a good use of a lot of the capabilities (and in some cases maxing them out) for the 1.0 platform. Zombomatic ...

denver big event follow-up

thanks to all who came out to the denver devdays big event this week.  this was the first time i've traveled in a while since various family ailments and situations.  i had a good few days in denver with some good peeps.  thanks to beth massi for joining our developer crowd in denver.  she was awesome and had a crowd wherever she was. i attempted to do justice to office development in one of the sessions.  one of the challenges on that topic is that 'office' now encompasses a lot of things...here's my known short list: ...

add free online web chat to your asp.net site

i've spoken a few times about axosoft.  they are a local ISV that does some great work.  their ceo, hamid, does a great thing every year for his employees (maybe more often) in encouraging and icubating new projects.  they have a core product, but also have incubated some great ideas.  some haven't lasted, but some live strong!  either way it is great to see what kind of ideas their group comes up with. PureChat is one of those new ideas.  this is an idea that was just released.  it is for asp.net sites and is built using c# and asp.net ajax...

automating an encoding pipeline

while preparing for the code trip, we have several 'on-board' needs.  one of which is a quick method to get our content encoded for consumption by devices and frameworks (i.e., silverlight).  we want a smooth method so that we aren't boggled down with multiple tools opening and changing settings, cutting and pasting, etc. so, inspired by my colleagues post about using workflow to automate, i set about the task.  we're going to be making several assumptions along our production, one of which is we know we'll have multiple video/audio sources and that there *will* be some post-edit being done.  but once...

calling services with ajax

recently i've been getting a few notes/questions about working with web services and asp.net ajax.  my colleague, rob bagby completed a series of great web casts last year covering the topic of the ajax libraries in detail, one of which deals with web services.  there are also two webcasts that deal with calling WCF services using the ajax libraries.  i highly recommend checking them out! tags: ajax, asp.net, asp.net ajax, atlas, aspnet, wcf, services, web services, bagby, silverlight

intersoft now has beta of silverlight controls

intersoft just sent me an email that the beta versions of their WebUIStudio.NET 2008 R1 is available, which includes a few new silverlight controls: WebAqua and WebCoverFlow. i'm curious how soon the apple attorneys might prepare a cease-and-desist on the naming of both of these controls, but that's for them to figure our.  I'm more interested in getting my hands on them and playing around.  you can read their press release here on where to get them.  it's very exciting to see so many controls popping up.  i hope that when silverlight 2.0 releases that these will all be ready for...

redesign the mix web site and win

got mad design and css skillz?  take a stab at redesigning the mix web site for a contest.  i saw through twitter that adam kinney noted only one person entered yet.  and there are three prizes!!! should make winning pretty simple right now ;-). of course i'm ineligible (that's my way of getting off, because i have no mad design skillz), but might i suggest a few themes to try out: halo 3 rockband/guitar hero - have you seen this and this...

visual rails workbench preview

the guys at sapphire, whom i'd previously written about their ruby in steel developer tools, just posted a preview of 'visual rails workbench,' which is a visual designer for ruby on rails.  here's one of their preview shots: this design mode with ERb is just one of the elements of the workbench it looks like.  get the full details (as well as some comments on IronRuby support in their other tools that they've been working on) by reading the update on the sapphire site. tags: ruby, rails, ruby on rails, ror, rails ide, saphhire, sapphire in steel, visual rails workbench, rails...

silverlight 2.0 for games, arrrr!!!

got an email today about something i hadn't seen yet, another silverlight 2.0 game, Pirates!  cameron emailed me about a cool prototype he's working on with the farseer engine.  here's a shot: as cameron puts it: "The goal of the game will be to attain the buried fortune of a long dead pirate named Rough Hand James. He created a map to his treasure and scattered the pieces all across the globe. It will be your adventure to find those map pieces and locate the treasure. You will start out on your ship with the first clue to the treasure and...

scott guthrie to visit phoenix

the leaders of the arizona .net user group have convinced scott guthrie that phoenix is nice in march (and it is...spring training baby!) and he should visit.  they've organized a super user group meeting and you can find information on when/where here.  it will be hosted at scottsdale center for the arts, which is a pretty killer facility.  i'd recommend carpooling and not messing with the no parking signs (those scottsdale folks like to watch those meters). having ScottGu come to phoenix immediately after MIX08 is a great thing for the community.  if you couldn't make it to MIX, you'll be...

feedreader gets a contribution

feedreader, my sharepoint web part originally built for sharepoint 2003, has been consumed by quite a few people (which i think is cool -- it is a rare moment when a lowly d00d like me can fill a gap).  while sharepoint 2007 has better built-in support for syndicated feeds (actually 2003 did already with the xml web part), i still think feedreader has some advantages that can be leveraged. a while back i put feedreader on codeplex, an open source sharing ground.  i used the microsoft public license so anyone can download, alter, and profit from the code.  i did this...

jumbling the encoder silverlight template files

i recently got an email from a rails developer who was using silverlight on a site to display high-quality media.  what?! you though silverlight was a windows-only technology? blasphemy!  you see, silverlight is a client-technology, which means as long as it can be served up to the browser (and the user has the plugin), the server can be your own custom version of l337hax0r web edition or whatever.  now, there are advantages of using internet information services on windows and some integration with asp.net, but that's not what this post is about.  on to the issue at hand will you... so...

arizona sharepoint user group starting

over the past 6 months i've received numerous questions whether or not a user group for sharepoint existed in arizona.  it didn't (there was one but it drizzled away), but i'm happy to announce that some volunteers rallied to start another one.  they have set a date for their first meeting or the arizona sharepoint professionals group. here's the information i have: Date:  Thursday, 31 JAN 2008 Time: 4:30 PM - 6:30 PM Locations: University of Advancing Technology, 2625 W Baseline Rd, Tempe, AZ they are asking people to register (not sure why) so if you plan on attending, please do register for them.  you...

ruby on rails and visual studio 2008

the guys over at sapphiresteel software released ruby in steel text edition, a full-featured ruby on rails IDE built on the visual studio 2008 shell. as a microsoft developer interested in looking at ruby on rails early on, i loved when the sapphire project was first released.  i had played with earlier version and after re-paving my machine need to take a look at the updated versions. if you don't own a copy of visual studio 2008, when you get the ruby in steel text edition, you get visual studio 2008 (ruby language support only) -- so this isn't an add-on...

silverlight streaming news - please read

there is an important announcement from the silverlight streaming team.  looks like they are moving to some newer/better hardware infrastructure.  please see the full announcement. here's the gist as well: Tonight (Tuesday, Jan. 8th) we’ll move the Microsoft Silverlight Streaming by Windows Live service from its current hardware in Sandbox to a more permanent home on new hardware in the Production environment. Note that this doesn’t change anything to the fact that it is still provided as an Alpha version with no associated SLA. At 9:00 pm PST the admin site front door (Silverlight.live.com) will be set to read-only. This means that...

join us for a big dev event

miss the days of devdays?  me too.  my team is trying to bring a little of that spark back!  joe shirey on my team has organized a full-day of developer and architect goodness.  we'll be hosting two events, one in the phoenix, arizona metro area and one in the denver, colorado metro area.  here's the gist: keynote: microsoft patterns and practices is being shipped in to talk about what they've produced and the logic behind it! developer track: exposing and consuming data using the microsoft stack (rob bagby): take a look...

special thanks to the new mexico .net user group

as some of you know i've been silent for a lot of december due to a series of unfortunate incidents.  the worst of which was a phone call that my wife was being air-evac'd from our neighborhood.  yeah, not a good call.  she was hit by a car while cycling.  she is getting better now after a surgery and physical therapy.  not back 100%, not even 70% but getting better daily.  in the midst of all of this, i've been battling kidney stones.  anyone who has had these knows that pain killers are your best friend right now.  i've had...

silverlight firestarter (seattle) online

at the end of november i had a chance to visit seattle to attend the silverlight firestarter event.  the entire day was captured on video.  those videos are now available at the visitmix.com site.  you can stream them directly on the site or download them for offline viewing.  the sessions include content from jesse liberty, arturo toledo, laurence moroney, adam kinney, ernie booth and adam nathan. all good stuff.  enjoy. tags: silverlight,firestarter,silverlight firestarter,visitmix,mix08

phoenix installfest wrap-up

well, it's been a while since the phoenix installfest and i've been behind on a few things.  on 20 dec 2007, the arizona user group communities hosted the phoenix installfest in tempe, arizona.  special thanks to a lot of people, but namely scott cate, spike xavier, lorin thwaits (cameraman), steele price and my comrades rob bagby, eric strait and dan willis.  tempe center for the arts was our host venue for the night.  i personally thought it was a kick arse venue even if the food was not the greatest (blame me for that, but you shouldn't complain, it was...

on10.net gets overhaul and some good content

in searching for a past post on10.net i noticed they got an overhaul on the user interface.  i also noticed some great new content just this week.  today i was able to learn about: new battery rules for travel problems with xbox live from major nelson over the holidays (maybe that was my problem) how to use a windows mobile device as a wireless router (although i'm not sure why, it is interesting)...

more silverlight controls emerge

this time from telerik.  telerik has just announced their RAD Controls for Silverlight 1.1(2.0).  they have a site up with some demonstrations, etc. (obviously requiring silverlight 1.1 to render).  they have controls like: upload button combobox listbox menus progress bar tab...

create silverlight 1.0 project in vs 2008

i've got a few messages about 'hey, where did the silverlight project template go in visual studio 2008?  what the heck, doesn't microsoft want us to create projects?' trouble is that it is there, but different...you know same, but different. if you have visual studio 2008 installed, make sure you install the silverlight tools for visual studio 2008.  yeah, i know it says 'tools for alpha' -- just install it would ya.  after you install it, you'll have the project templates for silverlight 1.1 2.0 as well as for 1.0.  but where is it? File...New Web Site... then you should see this: that's what...

silverlight search app goes shared source

remember the tafiti site?  want to know how they did that tree visualization in silverlight?  now you can. the tafiti search site is now a windows live quick app -- and uploaded to codeplex.  you can download, view source, mess around and learn.  from the lie team: Today we are releasing the Tafiti Search Visualization source code to CodePlex, which means any developer can download, modify, and resell the code (see MS-PL License for all the details). very, very cool.  go to the codeplex site and check it out and check out the overview on LiveSide! tags: silverlight,tafiti,windows live,life platform services,open source,oss,codeplex

creating silverlight player templates part 2

i had previously written about creating custom expression encoder templates and integrating them into the encoder workflow (if you haven't read that, check it out, very simple process).  my process was simple and followed the "CASE" methodology*. Copy Always Steal Everything basically i would encode a video file to get the output of the encoder template, then blast away all the xaml in player.xaml, and create your own silverlight media player skin.  really the only thing you need to know is the 'well known names' for certain controls (the most common of which i outline in my blog post.  i've received comments...

linq cheat sheet

just saw in my feed reader...a cheat sheet by keith rull for LINQ.  keith purports that this isn't a definitive list by any means but says: "It consist of a few snippets that you might commonly do when doing LINQ processing." he uses this for his most common tasks.  when i first start learning anything new, i do the same thing keeping snippets around to help me remember certain things.  as an example, can't remember how to do the paging?  use keith's cheat: //take three records var takeThree = listOfPerson.Take(3); //go to the 10th record and then take 3 records from there var skipTenTakeThree = listOfPerson.Skip(10).Take(3); thanks...

installfests to benefit charity

one of the great things about being a part of a community is being able to affect other communities.  during these installfests that are happening around the country, some have remembered the time of year and thinking of ways to give back to other communities. my counterpart in chicago, dave bost, set up accepting donations for toys for tots at some of his installfests.  when i read that i thought that was such a great idea.  we (the royal we as in the technical communities) often only think of our bits/bytes and i think this was a great inspiration to help...

write a plugin for expression encoder

remember that feature i was mentioning that is a plugin for expression encoder?  you know the one that enables you to publish the output immediately and directly to the silverlight streaming service? well, how would you like to write your own encoder publishing plugin.  perhaps you have a process with a content delivery network?  or have some custom process you want to implement in your own workflow (save as an encoder job file, etc.) for ongoing media encodings?  james clarke just announced a quickstart guide on developing publisher plug-ins for encoder. the code looks relatively simple to implement: [EncoderPlugin("Zip Plugin from scratch","Enables output...

phoenix installfest announced

of course if you are already a part of the broader .net user group community, you've seen this already.  but if you aren't (shame on you), you should head on over to azgroups.com and look at the event on the 20th of December.  be sure to sign up to the AZGroups mailing list as well for updates and future events. at the phoenix (tempe) installfest, people who are registered and attend will receive a special trial DVD of visual studio that will enable them to get a visual studio 2008 professional licensed copy sent to them as participating in this event...pretty...

pdc2008 announced

pdc for 2008 has been announced so you can save the date. the professional developer conference 2008 will be 27-30 OCTOBER at the Los Angeles Convention Center.  if you want the details (minimal now other than what i just said), you can visit the pdc2008 site. tags: pdc , pdc2008 , devdays , developer , professional developer conference , silverlight , visual studio , linq , asp.net , orcas , vb10 , vb , xml , xaml

silverlight firestarter heads to philly

looks like the flame is making its way to the other side of the coast...the east coast.  looks like in a week (15 DEC) the silverlight firestarter will be happening in the philly area (malvern to be specific).  you can find the agenda here at dani's blog. it looks like a great line-up of speakers as well.  although i've not met pete brown in person, i've 'conversed' with him via e-mail and he's a sharp dude.  peter laudati -- well, if you are in the northeast, a microsoft developer, and don't know peter...what's wrong with you? ;-).  and then there is...

flash releases update, changes prices, and the update process

"Competition is dropping prices, increasing quality and making everyone’s internet a better place." (ryan stewart) flash just did an update to the flash player.  i believe (according to their site) this takes it to v9.0.115.0 (at least for IE on windows).  what's included in this update?  primarily H.264 encoding support in the player.  this has been in beta for a while, but now 'official' from adobe.  the second announcement involves their (adobe) pricing/licensing changes around flash media server products, something that has been somewhat criticized for a while as cost-prohibitive.  the new pricing looks like a real aggressive price drop based...

silverlight webcast series launched

brad abrams kicked off some webcasts regarding silverlight over on msdn.  you should check out the on-demand as well as the upcoming webcast series... Kickoff Webcast: MSDN Webcast: An Introduction to Silverlight (Level 100) designers: MSDN Webcast: Designer Series (Part 1 of 5): Getting Started with Silverlight for Designers MSDN Webcast: Designer Series (Part 2 of 5): Working with Expression Design to Create Visual Assets ...

headed to the city of angels

"Go back to Jersey, Sonny. This is the City of the Angels and you haven't got any wings." (from LA Confidential) i'm headed to los angeles, ca tomorrow for a week of the phizzpop design challenge.  while last week already yielded some training in some of the expression tools and silverlight, i'm headed out to do my best to mentor those that are taking advantage of the microsoft working areas. what is the phizzpop design challenge? The PhizzPop Design Challenge pits top interactive, Web, and design agencies against one another to push the limits of technology and creativity in a battle royale. Think...

this one time at...er..um...firestarter

i hopped on a plane at 4am this morning to head back to phoenix from seattle.  oddly enough i landed in rain.  what gives phoenix?  actually it is a welcome refresh for me. i was in seattle for the silverlight fire starter event with my comrade mithun.  this was basically a one-day silverlight lovefest.  and the lineup of people was awesome: jesse liberty adam kinney laurence moroney ...

twittering silverlight firestarter

i'm twittering some of my thoughts on the silverlight firestarter event.  also as people are answering questions i'm trying to provide direct pointers...so if you are interested, follow me on twitter. also the event is being filmed so subscribe to my blog for updates on when that information is available. tags: silverlight , twitter , firestarter

.net web platform roadmap for asp.net and silverlight

this morning, scottgu posted details on the roadmap for the .net web platform.  it is an exciting roadmap to me, so let me hit some of the highlights: ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions - this will include the MVC framework, AJAX improvements, dynamic data support, asp.net and silverlight support, and ado.net data services (entity framework).  this release is expected to be available for download on the web next week in the first preview mode. silverlight: because of the significant effort being made and...

busy month -- upcoming stuff

i'm surprised how much is going on in the month of december...usually it is pretty idle...but this is my largest travel month. after just visiting the tucson .net user group and the denver visual studio user group (thanks to both for hosting), i'm off tomorrow to redmond for the silverlight firestarter event.  i come home just in time for our annual festivus party which i'm super excited for.  i've been storing some prizes that i've gotten throughout the year and am stoked for this weekend.  i'm pissed at myself for not getting t-shirts made this year...argh...oh well, i hope everyone enjoys...

the value of user communities

i just saw this pop in my inbox as a note (not to me) to one of the local user groups i belong to: I have been a member of this group now for some time, and while I am not yet at the level of many in here, I have greatly benefited from the help I have received. I just wanted to say, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, thanks to all those who have answered my numerous questions, and made my programming experiences all the better. Have a great Thanksgiving everyone! this is great, this is exactly the type of feedback...

introducing: the code trip

this week at devconnections a few of my comrades were there and started to spread the word about our planning on something we are doing in the western united states.  we're calling it 'the code trip' and the plan is simple, get us (the developer evangelists who interact with our community groups) out hitting the streets and talking code.  we're in planning stages right now for sure, and brewing up some things for our stops.  we want our communities to participate in that planning.  have a good idea?  let us know.  want to ride on the RV for a leg? ...

thirsty developer

my comrade in the midwest, dave bost, started a new podcast: the thirsty developer.  dave's a super cool guy and although i think this is an excuse to drink beer on the job, i'm subscribed to check it out. check it out: thirstydeveloper.com tags: thirstydeveloper , podcasting

coming soon: no more click to activate in ie

you may remember the result of EOLAS litigation a while back.  yes, the one resulting in what some feel is the annoying 'click to activate' functionality/feature/whatever that resulted when web authors chose to directly use <embed> or <object> tags in content, usually flash. this, of course, is mitigated when script creates the content, such as what silverlight does by default as well as the SWFObject script that many flash developers use (and if not, they should be).  well, while i still think a good practice in some instances, we may be looking at a solution. pete lepage of the internet explorer teams...

blogging hiatus

i'm headed out on holiday for about a week.  i haven't taken one in a long while and this will be good for me (hopefully).  i'm also headed to europe where i've never been, so i'm pretty excited.  i'm leaving the cell phone behind, so no twitter, etc.  i am equipped with a windows mobile gps-enabled handset and skype.  i'm looking forward to that experience and being able to use my custom application that i wrote to plot my points so my family can track us on virtual earth. anyhow, likely no posts for a week (not that you care).  when...

embed messenger in your html

the ability to embed messenger 'stuff' into your web applications, now you can!  just announced the ability to provide your status as well as have people interact with you directly on your web applications/sites. how do you do it?  visit http://settings.messenger.live.com/applications/CreateHtml.aspx to create the html for your specific presence/messenger account.  you first have to enable the ability to do it (i.e., you'd be allowing anonymous visibility into your messenger status), but once you do, you'll be able to cut and paste. on my blog (if you are reading this through a reader) i've added my presence indicator as well on my contact...

expression design sp1 improves xaml export

yo, check it.  expression design has released a service pack.  what!?  i know how can that be?  a service pack < 8 months after its release?  i say awesome.  i've been wanting microsoft teams to continue to become more and more agile especially with regards to very helpful features or great improvements of existing features based on user feedback. one such point of feedback that is implemented in expression design is that of xaml generation of the layers and/or complete surface.  you didn't know design can generate xaml?  shame on you.  i did a podcast (you should really subscribe to the...

virtual earth 3d tour

contest alert, contest alert!  i wrote a while back about creating your own virtual earth 3d tour using collections and the live platform.  by doing this you can create your own windows media video file of your locations using virtual earth 3d rendering. well, now you can benefit.  the virtual earth team is hosting a contest.  what do they want you to do?  they want you to build up some interesting collections and create the virtual tour.  after you've done that, post it on soapbox or youtube (or both) and submit your entry.    this should be a fun few minutes for...

this one time at podcamp...

so maybe my dream of getting exciting people in the silicon desert really starting to think different is coming to fruition? this past weekend was PodCampAZ, an event organized by some community members, sponsored by a few organizations and attended by many.  the primary face of the event seemed to be brent of iboughtamac.com.  let me tell you, if anything else brent seems to have solid skills as an organizer, designer, and marketer (i'm amazed at how he's marketed the iboughtamac brand -- how do i get a shirt?).  the site for podcampaz was very cleanly designed and wasn't thrown together...

componentone releases alpha of silverlight controls

codenamed 'sapphire,' componentone was one of the first to the market with their plans of silverlight user controls.  initially they put a bunch out there on their lab site to play with, but now you can sign up for their alpha version.  that's right, get your hands on some silverlight controls from componentone! now named Studio Enterprise Silverlight Toolset, they are taking alpha sign-ups.  to me, this is definitely a product you want to look early at.  they've got: buttons containers ...

petzold visits graceland

well, kinda.  i just found out that if you live anywhere near memphis, tn that you might want to head over to the memphis day of .net.  charles petzold, the master, will be delivering the keynote.  he aims to "explore the continuing love/hate relationship that both users and programmers have with graphics, and how WPF and Silverlight may change that relationship..." aside from the keynote, petzold has indicated that he'll be hanging out for the rest of the day to chat about WPF 3D, animation, or whatever.  if you are in the area, this sounds like a must-be-at event.  it is...

silverlight streaming for media apps made simpler

use expression encoder for creating silverlight media applications?  want to put them on silveright streaming?  frustrated perhaps that you have to create a zip file with manifests and such?  look no further! james clarke writes about a feature just added to expression encoder (via a download) where you can now add 'publish to silverlight streaming' after your encoding job is completed.  w00t! you'll need to get the encoder plugin (assuming you have encoder first) and just install that.  the post on james' site walks you through the steps, but it is a no brainer.  i'd previously written about customizing your own encoder...

mixing silverlight and aol truveo content

my colleague kirk has been writing some articles for the AOL developer network.  his first articles are up and he talks about integrating with the truveo, aol's developer api for video.  kirk does some integration with truveo's ajax api and displays information back in silverlight. the first two parts are up, and the third is underway, planning on using wcf and managed code with REST services. go check it out on kirk's site. tags: aol , truveo , silverlight , kirk evans , ajax , wcf , rest , api

technology in the bay area

last week i was at a team meeting in a town called bodega bay (near the area where scenes from the birds were filmed).  it is about an hour or so north of san francisco.  a nice little town, but my most enjoyable moment were the louisiana hot oysters i had on the last night...mmm...tasty.  ok, back on track. i had not thought ahead and accidentally (well at the time purposefully) made my return flight reservations for 06:00 AM from SFO international.  yeah, do the math.  that means i would have had to leave bodega bay, oh at 03:30-ish in the...

silverlight and right-to-left (rtl) languages

okay, if you don't know justin-josef angel, that is a shame, the dude is smart.  he's an mvp for microsoft and has been active in the silverlight community now, trying to really start the community thinking different on extending silverlight.  lately he's done just that. anyone who has ever had to develop a global application knows the challenges of ensuring localization.  it is perhaps one of my weakest spots as a developer and i'm sure a lot of others as well.  since justin-josef speaks arabic and hebrew he wanted to tackle this problem...rtl language display in silverlight.  thus enter the Silverlight...

MOSSDevCamp in chi town

the concepts of these 'devcamps' seem to be a winning formula.  a combination of open spaces, tech content, socializing, and contesting is luring people to iphone devcamps, silverlight, adobe air, and now sharepoint. my compadre dave in chicago is helping to support a MOSSCamp in chicago.  using the barcamp site?  of course not, it is for moss :-) so they are using some of the new sharepoint features in a public site.  you can read about the plans for the 9 NOV event being held at clarity consulting. so if you are available, in the area, and not too tired if...

integrating data with silverlight and media

a video screencast that jesse and i collaborated on was just posted.  in the screencast jesse demonstrates the code we did to demonstrate a concept he calls "hypervideo" which is basically leveraging media metadata, and simulating retrieving related data information to display in the experience. this concept is very similar to the experience at HSN.tv of showing "related products" using the metadata being streamed in their experience.  i hope you find it useful and if you have any questions, please let me know! again, my goal is to try to help provide you with relevant information about microsoft web platform technologies like...

some more silverlight 3d

saw this on the 'sphere...using ulead, swf2xaml jeff and michael created 'silverlightvr 360,' showing an image of a jeep in virtual 3d.  the user is able to move the image on along both axis points to look at the object (jeep) in a virtual 3d view. tools and directions are listed on their write-up here. tags: silverlight , 3d , xaml , swf2xaml

want my job?

well, not mine specifically, but similar, just in a different location.  my team (developer and platform evangelism) is hiring in northern california (bay area) for a developer evangelist.  i think we have a really fun team and working in the bay area would be exciting (if i think my family would move, i'd consider moving). what is a developer evangelist?  great question.  i truly believe it is what you make of it.  geographical areas are different, developer needs are different...but essentially our goal is the same.  i believe that goal to be a liaison for the development communities to microsoft.  there's...

osi approves microsoft licenses

the osi today announced the approval of two microsoft open source licenses, the Ms-PL (Microsoft Public License) and the Ms-RL (Microsoft Reciprocal License).  the osi process is one that is in the open and allowed microsoft and open source communities to discuss the nature of the licenses in an open forum.  as a result of that process, the licenses (after being renamed to the above) were approved.  the licenses were submitted to the osi on 10 aug 2007. this means that ironruby is officially an open source project :-) UPDATE: you may have noticed the "public license" -- no that isn't a...

facebook developer garage in tempe

the facebook developer garage is coming to tempe, az!  are you developing on the facebook platform?  are you curious about it?  come join the crowd. see the facebook event/group for details. facebook, garage, devgarage, fbl, fql, terralever

heading to vslive in vegas

i'll be heading to las vegas tomorrow to attend vslive!  i'll be hanging out at the microsoft area in the expo hall during those hours, but will be lurking around the show, hoping to catch scott cate and some of his presentations. if you are in the area, stop on by the booth or grab me in the hall.  got something for channel niners?  i'll have my vid cam, so let's chat :-) you can follow me on twitter (timheuer) or also give me a ring while i'm there (602-405-4567). tags: vslive , scottcate , timheuer , las vegas , microsoft , channel9...

utah code camp

live in the utah area?  join in the code camp fun.  the community there is planning a code camp.  see http://utcodecamp.com for details and information on location/speaking/etc.  It will be at Neumont University in South Jordan, UT! code camps are a great way to learn and participate in community.  it is always free to attend and you will undoubtedly learn something that day.  and if you have something to share, register to present.  the code camps are for everyone...you don't need to be a professional circuit technical presenter to participate...in fact, the best presentations are from "in the trenches" experiences. join the...

arizona silverlight user group

mike palermo has decided to start a special interest user group around silverlight!  the first meeting in the arizona area will be at interface technical training on 07-NOV at 6:00 PM.  attendance and participation are both free! please feel free to invite your friends, colleagues, etc and spread the word.  for the first meeting it will be a bit ad-hoc, but i know i'll be there and have volunteered to talk about creating controls, etc.  what do you want to hear about? you can view the other user group schedules as well as get the address for this meeting by visiting the...

some interesting news in php land

while i'm off galavanting in the aspen trees, some of my counterparts are up in san francisco attending zendcon, a php conference. some updates on some news that microsoft is announcing at zendcon... FastCGI for PHP -- this was a collaborative project between zend and microsoft to build a better fastcgi implementation for windows.  announced today will be that zend will be redistributing FastCGI in Zend Core.  additionally, zend will make sure that FastCGI is supported in the server core installation option for windows server 2008! ...

integrating html and silverlight

in part 1 of my baseball example concept, i discussed how i was able to re-use some SVG vector art in XAML.  in that screencast i used an SVG file and a PDF file.  it set the stage for the remaining part of my samples here.  to recap, my goal is to show: using vector files for XAML (done), integrating that XAML and html functionality (here) and then to show a "game play" view of the vector art, extracting just the field information. in this part 2 of that goal, i set out to recreate a different user experience for the...

.net framework source code released

yeah, me too.  the news of the day is that microsoft's developer group is releasing portions of the .net framework base class libraries (bcl) under the microsoft reference license (ms-rl).  in a nutshell the license enables the viewing of the source code, but no modification.  even so a step in the right direction in my opinion.  while it isn't an open source license, this is a part of microsoft's broader shared source initiatives to aid developers in the understanding of the innerworkings of the .net framework. we'll also be introducing capabilities in visual studio 2008 to allow .net developers debugging their...

physics game engine for silverlight

UPDATE/correction: jeff weber authored the farseer engine, bill ported for silverlight...both did good work!  thanks for the clarification! bill reiss of dr. popper fame (my daughter loves the "bubble game" she calls it), just released the farseer physics engine, which has support for silverlight (1.1) as well. the engine is an easy to use 2D physics engine for XNA and silverlight platforms.  it contains logic for collision, joints, controllers, etc...everything you would need to start a base casual game at least. bill put it out on codeplex as an open source project as well released under the Ms-Pl.  check out some of the...

podcasters unconference

just found this through one of my subscriptions. looks like it might be interesting to see what others are doing in that space...if you are interested (and in phoenix), come join!  more information at http://podcampaz.org. tags: podcast , podcampaz , podcamp , unconference

halo 3 launch in phoenix

thanks to those who were able to make it to the pre-launch event for halo 3 in phoenix!  i hope everyone had a great time being the first in the valley (of the sun) to play the halo 3 game and rock out to some guitar hero.  we had about 55 people for the event plus some staffers.  i know the building access was a pain in the arse, so i appreciated your patience getting in the building. we gave away 5 xbox 360 elites, 3 copies of halo 3, guitar hero set, halo 3 watches, flash drives, etc.  everyone was...

code camps happening all over again!

in phoenix we just enjoyed an awesome code camp.  there was a ton of people that cycled throughout the two days amidst a flurry of technology acronyms, frameworks, etc.  it was a melting pot of bytes for sure.  i had a blast the day i went (didn't go to the second day where they also introduced refactor phoenix). as with most conference, the sessions are great, but perhaps the conversations are better.  i had a great lunch conversation and a great conversation with some linux folks afterwards (or at least i though both conversations were great).  it is fun to meet...

sIFR and silverlight = sistr

i saw over in the township of adam kinney that someone came up with a silverlight version of the sIFR concept. for those who don't know, sIFR (scalable inman flash replacement) in simplest forms is a method for using css to annotate elements of text that you might want replaced with higher-quality/different/pick-your-word-of-choice typography.  it provided a method on sites to essentially say "hey if javascript is enabled and flash is installed, replace this plain text header with some whiz-bang custom font to make the user say ooooooooohhhh yea" or something like that. filipe fortes, who apparently used to work on the wpf...

using expression for manipulating paths and points

while perusing the silverlight.net forums i found a question of "creating half circle in blend" and posted my answer (actually posted the xaml of my answer). rather than try to articulate it in text, which i started out doing and was failing in my own mind, i decided to do a quick screencast demonstrating what i did.  keep in mind i'm not a vector guy but did it the way i knew how.  i hope that someone can correct me with a super easier way of doing it, but until then i'm fine with my method :-).  essentially i used expression...

get a steal on office 2007 ultimate for students

are you a student attending a US college?  here is the deal for you.  for a limited time you can get a copy of office 2007 ultimate for $60!  i don't normally post blog commercials this blatant but this is an amazing deal for college students in the US.  check out http://theultimatesteal.com for more details!

more silverlight learning opportunities

in addition to the silverlight devcamps in san francisco and chicago that i mentioned before, my friends from overseas let me know of some other silverlight madness happening. martha rotter is going to be attending the "Silverlight sparks ignite RIA" conference in dublin on 27 SEP.  yes, dublin, ireland, not dublin, ohio, usa.  apparently this is going to happen at a large cineplex as well (i've never been to dublin, but would like to!) so it is silverlight on the silver screen! you can find out details by going to the event information site here. tags: silverlight , silverlightdevcamp , silverlightdevcampsf , silverlightdevcampchicago...

windows live writer beta 3

the windows live team released an update to live writer.  get it now.  new insert video feature, upload to picassaweb when publishing to blogger, better image handling (i didn't know there was any bad because i use www.flickr4writer.com :-)). keep the good stuff coming! tags: flickr4writer , windows live writer , windows live , writer , live writer

silverlight released, go to a devcamp!

now that silverlight is 'officially' released, maybe you've been waiting for that "RC" label to go away.  okay, no more excuses, time to start digging in.  what better way to do that then cuddle up with a few of your closest unknown friends and hack away, barcamp style! some fine folks have organized a SilverlightDevCamp in two areas and they are free to attend and get some SWAG, some learning, and make some connections.  designers, developers, people with macbooks, everyone is welcome. what is a silverlightdevcamp?  i'm glad you asked.   SilverlightDevCampSF is an upcoming gathering, inspired by BarCamp, to build Silverlight applications, It's...

voted off on visual studio survivor island

i had my first full fledged second life experience today.  i had signed up a while back out of sheer curiosity, didn't get it really, and just fell by the wayside.  today i saw that brad abrams was presenting a silverlight session "in second life" i figured i'd check out what this experience is going to be.  after all, he was presenting on visual studio island and i figured, cool. to be fair, i'm not a gamer, or alternate world-ist at all, so i absolutely entered this with preconceived notions.  but nonetheless i entered...as a noob. so off i went to the...

phoenix area event added

due to some feedback, microsoft has added an msdn/technet event to the phoenix area on 26 SEP 2007. for msdn, the topics covered in the half-day session are: LINQ (covered by Rob Bagby) WCF (covered by Rick Garibay) Silverlight (covered by me) please join us and register for both the technet and the msdn event!  they are both free events! register for technet register for msdn tags: msdn , technet , linq ,...

rss and json format

i was working on a little sample and wanted to make it a bit easier on myself to work with my rss data.  my thought was to use the JSON format for the data and that way i could get at the data in super-cool-ajaxy-type ways.  what was cool was what i found as i began searching. ASP.NET Ajax provides a class library to javascript!  in System.Web.Script.Serialization.JavascriptSerializer is where you will find your magic.  the JavascriptSerializer can be used on anything that uses XmlSerialization.  sweet. so now all i had to do was take my RSS data (already in good xml format)...

silverlight on some free hosters

well, in my previous examples, i was using a free linux hoster.  i found another one that was much more reliable from a responsiveness standpoint, but found a snag and wanted to share. you see on some free hosters, in order to be free they'll add banner adds to your pages.  for my purposes, who cares.  i signed up with this particular one and none of my samples were working.  huh, weird i thought.  until you look at the error message of 'unknown namespace' from silverlight.  ahh... you see what the free host was doing was injecting their banner ad code into...

implementing silverlight controls in 1.0

i just put up my latest screencast featuring a sample on how to create your own user control in silverlight version 1.0.  this is about a 24 minute screencast that walks through creating the XAML as a user control (not the primary focus) quickly, and then consuming this user control in a silverlight 1.0 application, creating the control dynamically using createFromXaml. i also realized that in the screencast i mentioned that i was using the 'open as web site' feature in visual studio 2008 instead of just right-clicking the project in blend and choosing 'edit in visual studio' -- but then...

facebook and iphone sittin' in a tree

well, it looks like my efforts with facePhone were short lived.  i started out creating a better mobile UI for facebook on the iphone.  i was challenged, however as the API didn't provide essentially everything i needed/wanted, so i got a limited functionality, but for me, was fine (getting status updates): well, the guys at facebook (presumably joe hewitt -- i actually contacted him about my efforts and never heard back...maybe this is why :-)). i haven't tried on edge, but they are loading a lot of content there.  looks good though. tags: iphone , facebook , iui , facephone

foo theory: some great stuff

i've been subscribed to a blog called 'foo theory' for a bit now and their content keeps getting better and better.  bennie is now on part 5 of a series on new language features in c# 3.  his recent part 5 talks about lambda expressions but does a good job of walking through some history and defining delegates, anonymous methods, etc. for us minions. you should check out the foo theory guys...good stuff.  main feed here. tags: foo theory , c# , lambda , delegates , anonymous methods , visual studio

the silvertour

in my previous post about a road-trip television show i've been watching, i mentioned that i have been noddling on an idea that i've wanted to do for a while.  i've wanted to get out and meet as many developers as i can and it just seems that the same user group meetings aren't attracting new blood...why is that?  so i thought how can my peers get out there and really reach some people in a different way...and more importantly in different places.  i want to see first-hand the great things people are developing with microsoft. so my thought is road-trip. ...

silverlight: return of the clean and my toolbox

you can tell when a new fiscal year has started (or at least the month after a new fiscal year).  people are back from vacations, meetings are more frequent, last-minute trips are planned, you get the picture.  all of this has been counterproductive to me being able to really sit down and do some fun things with silverlight.  not to feat though, some great things have been going on. after i had helped "bcl man" :-) upload some videos of ironruby, i decided it did not do him justice to use one of the vanilla templates and altered it a bit...

oscon: day 2 - morning general session

forget it, i'm not calling it a keynote ;-) the morning session (which started out being a very, very thin crowd -- parties must have been good) started with a data visualization talk by ben fry.  honestly, i wish you could have been here for that.  the demonstrations were awesome.  the visualizations weren't pie charts, etc.  they weren't mashups.  think data meets industrial light and magic, pixar, or your favorite animation/special effect/interactive big-dog.  ben showed a cool visualisation of apache log files that looked like a flower blooming and you could create new 'stems' on it (best i can...

oscon: day 2 - microsoft and open source announcements

at oscon this morning, microsoft unveiled a new web site outlining positions on open source strategy.  the goal is to provide transparency into microsoft's perspective on OSS and a place where evidence and information can be shared. you can visit the new site here: Open Source at Microsoft. you might ask, 'what about port25, isn't that what it was supposed to be?' and you'd have a valid question.  port25 is the site for the open source software lab at microsoft.  it will continue to be a source for technical information with the oss technical community versus anything outlining...

silverlight tetris: please contact me

i'm trying to reach out to the author of silverlight tetris.  i don't speak spanish, but tried to post a note on the contact page, but got an error.  if anyone happens to know jose, please have him contact me (in english as i don't speak spanish). tags: silverlight, tetris

oscon: day 1 - is there a user in the house

i'm now sitting in a session entitled "hello? is there a user in the house?" with amy hoy.  amy is a user interface designer and has been around the block with regard to user centric design...something that is lacking in probably most software development processes. here's some of my raw notes/thoughts.  if you've done user-centric design before, most of this will not be new. creators == consumers (understand who they are building for because they are building for themselves) -- this is what makes some projects successful in the geek world -- we develop for what we want...

oscon: day 1 - who decides what open source means

well the next session block had some to choose from.  i decided one of these was going to be my choice: who gets to decide what open source means open design, not by committee cross platform .net with mono open source voting i saw the .net/mono one was in the product/services track, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but usually means that it has a product twist on it.  frank w/novell...

oscon: day 1 - rich internet applications in php

i'm sitting in andi gutman's presentation at oscon about building rich internet applications in php.  my expectations will be that this will be talking about ajax and flex (given the nature of the conference). andi's first talking about the nature of ajax for rich applications in php.  what is cool is that he mentioned the micorosft ajax client library and the codeplex php kit in the talk so far.  he said he likes talking about it because it demonstrates the nature of ajax standards.  he also talked initially about simplexml as a mechanism for communicating with ajax...

oscon: day 1 keynote

this year, microsoft is a premier sponsor for oscon alongside intel and zimki.  i'm grateful that microsoft is a sponsor and excited about some of the things we'll be talking about this week.  open source conferences certainly are a different beast compared to microsoft big-dog conferences like PDC/TechEd/etc.  sure there are the little things like the halls being constantly filled with sugar and caffeine...not here at oscon (which is not necessarily a bad thing). sigh, here's my biggest beef with o'reilly conferences...abusing the keynote.  on two levels.  on the first level is a little bit of obessiveness of accuracy...

ironruby source code released

yesterday i just posted about excitement around the ironruby discussion at oscon.  well, more excitement today! john lam just announced the first drop of the ironruby sourcecode!  the source is licensed under the microsoft permissive license (BSD-style).  also the team has announced that they will be accepting source code contributions for the ironruby libraries!  this is phenomenal.  there will be a lot of work to make that happen and the intention is to get ironruby on to rubyforge by end of august. john also announced that in some some micro-benchmark tests, ironruby is testing significantly faster than ruby 1.8.6 in...

oscon: open source and microsoft

UPDATE: ironruby sourcecode released! this week i'm heading to one of my favorite cities, portland.  it is the week the open source geeks descend upon the oregon convention center for a week of open source-ness for OSCON. so why am i going?  i went last year and had a blast...and learned a lot.  this year i'm going to lurk a little bit more, try to get some candid thoughts of attendees and hopefully learn some more! microsoft will have a good showing this year, and i'm most excited about john lam's session on ironruby.  if you are headed to oscon,...

hanselman == blue badge

news flash: scott hanselman has joined microsoft...working in the developer division with scottgu. read about it here from his own words. tags: hanselman, blue badge, microsoft, devdiv, scottgu

turn the dial back 2: channel 8

channel 9 was born, then came 10...now press the down on your remote twice...channel 8 has launched! from the about page: Channel 8 is THE place to be for STUDENTS who want to code, connect and create technology. Stay plugged into tech news and share in the experience with students around the world just like you who want to see their creations come to life. This is also a back door directly into Microsoft just like Channel 9 but from a student point of view. This means access to the inside scoop about our products and life working inside...

facebook and silverlight

after playing around with some facebook toolkits, i wanted to ensure that facebook could enable silverlight applications within their context.  you see facebook and silverlight already live in harmony in popfly where you can create oh, i don't know, whack-a-mole with your facebook friend profiles? (sidenote: popfly was just updated again...read more here.) i figured i'd whip up a quick and dirty proof using the python cube example (thus also testing to see if silverlight streaming in a facebook app would work). lo and behold, no problems: using my newfound friend jing, you can see a quick screencast of...

more facebook .net

i recently posted about working with facebook and using the facebook toolkit that microsoft apparently partnered with to create.  i just noticed that nikhil has created another facebook toolkit for .net, which he calls Facebook.NET.  i'm not sure if nikhil knew about the existing toolkit, but he did do some interesting things that i'll have to take a look at that will also enable writing facebook applications (i.e., *in* facebook). this will enable you to create FBML applications more easily through the use of ASP.NET controls and .NET wrappers of the REST calls he made...pretty cool, check it out. tags:...

supper happy dev house comes to the other valley

so up in the valley (the one of silicon, that is), they have very interesting and different ways of getting communities in the tech world together.  one of them they've dubbed the SupperHappyDevHouse.  i swear everytime i hear that said or even type it myself i can't stop thinking of saturday night live's tv funhouse: but i digress (again).  anyhow, what is supperhappydevhouse?  well, if you read the site it is described as: DevHouse is not a marketing event. It's a non-exclusive event intended for passionate and creative technical people that want to have some fun, learn new...

dlr updates via facebook

as seen on facebook... "John [Lam] is VERY pleased with the performance of dynamic sites in Ruby." (13 JUL 2007) see you at OSCON next week :-) tags: ironruby, ruby on rails, ruby, ironpython, dlr, dynamic language runtime, silverlight, oscon

jing: your new snapshot tool?

just came across this little project from the makers of camtasia, techsmith.  they call their project jing.  it's essentially a 'let me take a video/snapshot of what i'm doing and instantly share it with you' tool.  sure we have us nerdos who know how to do these things already with alt+prtsc, winsnap, snagit, camtasia, etc.  but could this be a tool for the rest of us (or even for the alphas).  it's simple, fast and does exactly what it says it does.  check out the screencast on their blog for a quick demonstration (love the background music). pretty cool...

facebook + code = facephone and virtual friends

what?! you don't know what facebook is?  haven't you heard all the cool kids are doing it so you should totally jump on it with complete disregard to whether or not there is any benefit to you at all.  then just accept every single friend request and you can have yet another disparate network of your own!  (i'm actually experimenting with adding random friends to see if people accept them the way myspace grew -- friends in myspace seem to almost be a chest-pounding reputation/currency thing.) seriously, though if you haven't heard about it, it is worth a read. ...

windows live quickapps

want to know how to use some of the windows live services?  announced at the partner conference this week, some beta windows live quickapps have been released.  these provide out-of-box implementations for certain scenarios and take advantage of live services like expo, spaces, silverlight streaming, virtual earth, etc.  and all source code is provided!  there are two of them available now, but more to come according to the site.  i downloaded the bike one, unzipped it and ran it right away...it was simple to set up. check them out here and download them at codeplex (with the source)....

desert code camp announced

the date for the next desert code camp is announced...September 15, 2007.  the site is open for submissions and registration.  this is a FREE event for anyone.  this is not a microsoft event -- open to the technical community...everyone!  submit a session about your favorite technology, give everyone an hour of your knowledge. visit http://desertcodecamp.com for details, current session submissions and to submit your own session!  get your travel plans set, block the date...come join us in the desert!  september in phoenix...very nice. tags: desert code camp, code camp, phoenix, azgroups, community

new swf to xaml converter

as seen on the silverlight.net forums (you should visit sometime)... over at theconverted.ca there is a new SWF to XAML converter in the market...according to the site: This program converts Flash animations to the Xaml format. It accepts files up to Flash version 8. It handles animation, sound and fonts. You drag files in, it generates the results. You can use the command line for automation. check out some of the demonstration conversions -- pretty impressive! tags: silverlight, xaml, swf, flash, swf converter, swf to xaml

speed of social networks --new commerce?

the other day i wrote about the social networks my wife has setup/belongs to.  i mentioned the 'qcbay' sales aspect of one of them.  i'll say that i'm an avid ebay user and occiasional craigslist lurker...but this time i decided to try out the wife network system of QCBay. i had an imac i wanted to sell (powerpc one).  my wife walked me through the instructions (read:rules) of listing something in her network...i did it under her name of course.  look at the timestamps on the mail. the first (10:01am is my message sent to the network).  the second...

heading to hotlanta, join us at the user group

on monday, i'll be headed to atlanta, georgia for some training.  i am hoping my flight will be on time -- i know it will :-), and then i'll be heading to the user group meeting at the microsoft office in alpharetta.  if you are in the hood, come over!  there are going to be a slew of geeks there talking about all sorts of stuff...should be a good time.  allegedly we'll be doing a 'who's slide is it anyway' session -- this scares me :-) visit doug's site for all the details, locations, times.

building community in your community

if you read this site, you are likely a techno dweeb like myself (or for some odd reason came via a really bad google search result).  i say that because when we geeks talk about 'community' we generally mean user groups, online forums, etc...you know geek community--joining together others who know nothing about each other but only commonality is their desire for all things geek. well, last week i went golfing with scott (who i met via community and have become friends with) and we were chatting about wives and stuff and what people do to fill their time in...

silverlight: who needs inertia, introducing lt. bennett

UPDATE: for international users, the team is aware of this limited functionality...and the current build works with US English keyboard layout and US English regional settings.  sorry about that, but it's a lab project that will evolve. for the past few weeks i've had the pleasure of really seeing this whole designer-developer continuum really work.  the team over at Terralever have been working on a little lab project using silverlight.  first let me tell you about the Terralever team...they rock.  i figured there would be a ton of questions, etc., but from our first initial meeting, their team was already spouting...

silverlight: snack on some tutorials

the master of design, celso gomes, has done it again.  i got an email today about his new site, built completely in silverlight for silverlight tutorials.  check it out: http://www.nibblestutorials.net/.  it really was a good demonstration to me of something entirely built in silverlight.  well done, celso. tags: celso, celso gomes, silverlight, nibbles

food, rss, and photography == digigeek heaven

i have an unfortunate love for technology (or so my bank tells me). i have an unfortunate love for food (or so my scale tells me). i wish i was a good photographer (nobody is telling me i am, so i keep trying). while browsing some local groups, i came across chowdownphoenix.com a new site in my area combining the power of the 'blogosphere' (is anyone tired of being forced to use buzzwords?), good photography, and yummy food.  i spent a few minutes on the site and i'm going to make dinner now. cool idea i thought and i'm very curious...

scottgu roadshow: coming to phoenix

scottgu recently posted about his june travels.  if he's anything like me, he's sick of bischoff cookies.  at any rate, one of those stops is in my 'hood, in phoenix, arizona.  we call it "the valley" but not like "the valley" of mountain view/san jose in california...ours is the "valley of the sun" and when i came home yesterday my thermometer was reading 111 degrees farenheit.  blech. where was i, oh yeah, ScottGu is coming.  it's a free event.  stefan schackow is coming too.  it's the same event.  it should be fun.  when? june 27th.  want more details?  go to...

sharepoint and firefox

a while back i wrote a post about sharepoint and firefox...i saw a trackback to this in a forum indicating a lot of rant for microsoft not including this support.  in my original post i made reference to a partner that was enabling this for firefox users.  the link is in the post but i'll make it here again. telerik and cross-browser editor for sharepoint 2007 done.  get it (free btw) and install it.  they have a doc to help you configure/install. there, so no more complaining :-) tags: sharepoint, telerik, radeditor, moss, moss 2007, firefox, rich editor

msdn search gadget updated

thanks to mike ormond for prodding me about updating the msdn search sidebar gadget.  i had found this issue as well myself when i realized it wasn't working anymore.  well, it was because msdn went through a redesign and their urls changed...so much for scraping :-) well, i updated mine and i'm sure nikhil is swamped and may not have a chance to update his (and i didn't want to redist his code, but here's what i did). on mine you can just download the new one here: MSDN Search Sidebar Gadget when i say "mine" it is just a...

eulas, express, and lawyers oh my

a friend of mine send me a note today asking my thoughts on the whole testdriven.net situation.  i was surprised in anyone asking me about it (not because i'm a snob or anything, just that it had been all over the place).  i then realized that the register and /. picked it up finally and that's were it is getting some rebuzz. if you don't know what i'm talking about, basically the author (jamie) of TestDriven.NET (a great tool btw) had been enabled for visual studio express. The Express Editions are an expansion of the Visual Studio and SQL...

winning an xbox couldn't be easier

one of my homies just posted a note about winning an xbox through blogging.  what?! surely you couldn't be serious...ah but he is. now you might consider it shameless promotion of events, and you'd be right, but there is a purpose here.  often times when we (as those field geeks with funny position titles) organize events there is certain targets that we are trying to meet (read: the people who pay for the events want to make sure they can direct some things).  if it were up to us, we'd always make everything free and always invite everyone.  but utopia...

new windows live writer avail

beta 2 of windows live writer was released today.  go get it.  improved user interface, improved blog support, some new functions...you know all the good stuff you want in an update.  oh yeah and continued extensibility. i took a quick second (after doing a little RTFM'ing [thanks charles]) and uploaded a custom manifest to my blog.  why?  because when in writer sometimes i want quick access to things about my blog (stats and such).  so i took a minute to "subtext"-ize a sidebar extension to writer...see: i've got the nice little transparent subtext icon in the back and two...

onramp: follow-up from silicon valley

first, thanks to all who came out to the microsoft silicon valley campus on thursday to listen to me babble about microsoft and web developer technologies.  as promised, i said i'd make a post with answers to unanswered questions and/or concerns... so here we go! logistics: expression web product: i learned some clarification on the fulfillment of the expression web product (note: if you didn't hear, those that registered and attended will receive a not-for-resale copy of expression web, one of the products we discussed and showed in the morning for developing/authoring standards-based web sites/pages/applications.  there was confusion (mostly on...

baseball, meet blogging

i've been monitoring 38pitches.com for a while now and if you aren't aware of it, it's essentially (well not really, it is) curt schilling's blog.  if you have no idea who he is, that's okay...you're likely a geek...and that is fine. but curt's blog is bringing blogging to the mainstream.  go ahead and argue that scoble did that, or that news agencies did that, but i'll disagree.  curt is appealing to the sports fan...not the techno dweeb like you and me, but to the everyday joe. for a minute, take a look at the number of comments he gets per post...unreal -- averages about 100,...

portland code camp wrap-up

i had a great time at the day i attended at the portland code camp!  i'm sorry for those who couldn't make it, you missed out!  we also had a great time at the kennedy school afterwards on saturday (an old elementary school transformed into a bar, restaurant, movie theater, hotel, etc. -- very cool, all the insides of the school left in tact). i delivered 3 presentations at the saturday session of code camp: virtual earth, sidebar gadgets and popfly.  first and foremost, thank you for those that attended my sessions (i apologize for the room changes again), i...

railsconf: day one (actually 2) keynote

i chose not to attend technically the first day of railsconf which was some pre-con tutorials.  why?  well, last year i did, and didn't find them a particular valuable use of 8 hours of my time...probably because in conference mode i'm not in a mindset of sitting for 4 hours on one topic. but i'm here back in portland, this time for railsconf (my last trip was oscon...man was it really that long ago?) as well as the portland code camp (where i have a few sessions).  there are a few of us softie-types here at railsconf, so if you...

popfly is launched

check it out -- microsoft popfly is an online environment to easily (and in a fun way) create apps, mashups, gadgets, etc.  the "ide" is built on silverlight too! there is also a plugin for visual studio to look at the community submissions. view the overview and sign up for the waitlist. tags: popfly, springfield, express, coding4fun, gadget, mashup, silverlight

@portland: railsconf and code camp

i'm in portland!  i like this town.  i'm here for railsconf and portland code camp...if you are in the 'hood, give a shout out.

silverlight: layouts and control framework

one of the things that developers ask me about silverlight is regarding the control set...more specifically...where is it.  well, i don't have a timeline for you, but there are a bunch of other people working on some samples and frameworks for silverlight. dave relyea just posted a layout and control framework for the silverlight 1.1 alpha.  check it out. tags: silverlight plugin, silverlight, layout controls, wpfe, blend, relyea

flickr4writer minor release

well, the flickr4writer project had it's first community contribution (thanks simon).  a new minor release was updated today that incorporates one small bug fix and one feature change (ability to select multiple images). release: Flickr4Writer v1.2.7.0516 tags: flickr, flickr4writer, codeplex, windows live writer, writer, live writer, blog, blogging, writer plugin

silverlight: in a dashboard widget

someone asked if silverlight would work in an osx dashboard widget...interesting thought i felt.  after all, the dashboard widget concept is similar to the sidebar gadget feature in vista in that it is essentially a packaged file with html, javascript, images, etc.  so i went to task and tried it out. i first started with a media player that i had been working on and it didn't go so well...more on that at a later time (startup javascripts, etc.).  after that i just dumbed it down to a simple sample that had some animation and stuff. packaged it up, deploy...

virtual earth: goodbye pushpin, hello shape

now that the virtual earth version 5 sdk/control is out and available, some that may want to quickly move to v5 may find some refactoring required.  for me, it was pushpins.  when using v4 of vritual earth, i would normally create a VEPushpin first like this: var pin = new VEPushpin( someId, // unique identifier of the pin latLon, // a VELatLong object "images/custompin.png", // custom pin object "some title", //...

silverlight: embedding the plugin part 2

in a previous post i wrote about embedding the silverlight applications in your site using the silverlight streaming service.  i wrote about my troubles in getting output from more complex types working in the service.  here's the skinny.  i was using expression media encoder (eme for the cool kids) and the output templates for media players.  turns out the version of eme i was using was missing a few things.  the version on microsoft.com/expression is correct and is working fine. if you are using eme outputs and want to put them in silverlight streaming, do not use the <source> node...

silverlight: embedding the plugin

so what happens when you want to embed silverlight in your page?  well if you have absolute control over your site, you may not need to worry as you'll post your silverlight applications as-is.  but what if you want to just output some smaller silverlight applications in specific areas in your site, blog, etc? enter silverlight streaming.  this was announced at mix07 where you get 4gb storage for free.  now, there are some caveats that you should read about -- the 4gb is total storage, but the per-app upload has some limits...so be sure to read...it may not meet...

mix07: ruby for .net and an interview with john lam

scottgu just announced microsoft is providing a ruby implementation for .net...nice. before mix i had a chance to sit down with john lam, a program manager at microsoft working on the dynamic language runtime that was announced at mix07.  i went to seattle and carved off a moment to talk with him as they prepared for mix07.  i've put the recording up on my *cast site for you to view/listen to.  some interesting things he talks about and how happy he is to finally break his silence.  in the middle, the small edit you'll see is when his office-mate, tomas...

mix07: key announcements today

well, some pretty good news coming out of mix07 today...here's a quick recap... release of Silverlight 1.0 beta supporting ajax/javascript release of Silverlight 1.1 alpha supporting .net programming model announcing cross-platform (windows/mac) .net as a part of Silverlight 1.1 alpha announcing support for dynamic languages (ruby, python out of the gate) as a part of Silverlight 1.1 alpha rtm of expression studio preview of expression blend v2 (supporting richer Silverlight development) expression media encoder preview for Silverlight Silverlight streaming by Windows Live whew, that is a lot to swallow.  i'm most excited...

mix07: from the bloggerzone

the first night of mix yielded a few pre-parties.  i first went to the regional director dinner event, where we were able to chat with a few microsoft regional directors who happen to be at mix this year.  of particular note is scott stanfield from vertigo.  they are demonstrating (and you can see it/download the source) a really slick wpf application called Family.Show which is essentially a visualization tool for family history information...very cool, check it out. after that (and actually a little bit before) i went to the mashup day area (which will be going on as well monday night...

some new feeds for timheuer

hey all, quick update here.  i've been starting to record some media (audio/video interviews) and have set up some feeds for your podcasting delight.  next week especially i'll be uploading a few from MIX07 with some great updates that microsoft will be announcing. so, here's an explanation of them (they are on the left and as well as alternate links in the site meta data): All *casts: this is all WMV and MP3 files so you'll get video and audio MP3 Casts: um yeah, mp3 files only WMV Casts: um yeah, wmv files only right now...

web dev helper vista fix for non UAC

if you are a web developer, you most likely want all possible tools available to you.  and there are some great ones out there like firebug, ie development toolbar, etc.  if you are an asp.net developer, you most likely know about the best helper tool by nikhil called the 'web development helper' which is implemented as a browser helper object for internet explorer. nikhilk has evolved his tool over time and in the latest version has awesome support for reading JSON encoded information and visual representing them in a helper way so that you can see what is going on. ...

s3: my possible new storage location

so at tech lunch wednesday here in phoenix, after lunch i sat with hamid and scott for a bit and we were brainstorming about a few things.  one of which was storage, then we got on the topic of amazon's s3 solution.  i had started to look at it before, but then never got the time to go back.  essentially amazon provides storage via a web service (there are no tools provided by them, just an api).  i said that i mainly use flickr for the storage and that i'd only use it if i could get a direct url...

tech open houses

i just got back from hanging out with some guys from integrum technologies, a local consulting firm specializing in ruby on rails development. what?! a softie hanging out with rails people?  well for those that know me, even though i bleed blue (seriously i do, i had my molecular dna changed to ensure it...we almost named our son Zune, but we settled on Zane instead), i'm a technologist at heart.  you see, my problem is that i love technology (i'm imagining kip dynamite singing his song right about now) and i love to learn new things...staying all agile about technology...

gotdotnet: phase out date changed

well, i've been procrastinating like others in moving my codegallery samples away from gotdotnet...i had it on my to-do list for today.  when i logged in i noticed this update: CodeGallery phase-out date has been changed.  It will be phased out by the end of June 2007.  As a part of the phase-out of the GotDotNet site, CodeGallery will no longer be available after June, 2007. whew, gives me more time.  there really isn't a good place to dump this type of stuff anymore.  sure there is codeplex, but that is more around the project-based experience in my opinion. ...

Links from the Vegas Lab

Thanks to all who joined WoodyP and myself in Las Vegas for the mobility touchdown class.  I thought I'd braindump some of the links and cool stuff we talked about during the 3 days...so here you go: New Live Search: http://wls.live.com (from your mobile device) Chris De Herrera's PocketPC FAQ: http://www.pocketpcfaq.com Visual Studio Code Snippets sharing: http://www.gotcodesnippets.net Code snippet Creation: Snippy WoodyP's link w/PDFs of the lab, etc. Mobile Updater Application Block from Q4Tech Registry editor for Windows Mobile Using KIOSK mode for a Windows Mobile device check back on my...

migrating to sharepoint 2007 as a developer...

...and missing the CAML love?  you got so used to the template structure for sharepoint 2003 didn't you :-)  take a look at some information to help you understand if you don't know much about master pages (the ASP.NET template framework that sharepoint...err...um...sorry, MOSS uses now) this is a good primer especially if you are using sharepoint designer to manage your sharepoint site. when you visit the sharepoint designer tutorial link you'll see information about: introduction to asp.net master pages modify the default master page modify the default sharepoint content placeholders create a content page...

wpf/e: zune miniplayer

i've been trying to learn more and more about wpf/e and the current functionality in the february ctp, so i decided to jump on the create-a-video-player-skin bandwagon and mock something up. i thought it would be quite the incredible thing (read: couldn't think of a better idea) to show a zune player...so whoala: and when you click 'start player' (yes i know it would be cool to show the player as a playlist and use the normal zune buttons, but c'mon, v.0.0.3 here...work with me people) it rotates to show you the video (if you don't own a zune,...

new subtext skins

after recently finding out about open source design sites, i wanted to cut my teeth a bit more and learn some css by just reading them...so i figure i would adapt a few designs for subtext (my blog engine).  i've created three subtext skins based on designs...you can see the screenshots of them at this flickr photostream. i adapted three designs: minty, greenway, and metic.  the only requirement to using them is that the footer credits stay in place.  these designs use the creative commons attribution licenses, so please give the original authors credit and honor that license.  i've zipped...

expression tools available to msdn subscribers

one thing that i really have been liking about microsoft over the past year is the teams that have been listening to feedback.  here's one case in point. previously it was discussed (i'm not sure if was even officially 'announced' or not announced, but there was some discussion at best) that the expression tools (expression web, blend, design, and media) would not be available to premium visual studio subscribers (also known as 'msdn subscriptions').  this caused quite a bit of uproar in the community (and candidly i'll share with you that the uproar internally was ten-fold).  microsoft embarking on...

the summit recap

last week i was a part of something that has become a bit of an annual event -- the 'microsoft technology summit' as we call it...it originated from the group that i am a part of 3 years ago, and has continued since then (with some bumps admittedly).  the goal of the summit is quite simple really (from the organizers' perspective) -- gather the not-so-typical-if-any-microsoft crowd (read: not the i hate microsoft crowd, but those that don't frequent our diner so to speak), bring them to redmond, and attempt to gather the brains of microsoft that they may want to...

utah code camp

the utah code camp is just around the corner.  unfortunately i won't be there due to some previous travel, but if you are in the area, it would be great to participate in! When: April 14 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Where: Neumont University Registration link: http://utahcodecamp.eventbrite.com you can visit www.msutahevents.com for session schedule, speaker profiles, etc.  check it out and attend! tags: code camp, community, utah code camp

channel 9 is wired

a colleague recently showed me the latest edition of wired magazine (something i used to subscribe to but don't anymore just because i'm more "online").  after getting past the cover, peter showed me the article where channel 9 was featured and jeff sandquist interviewed. first, i think that is pretty rewarding for the channel 9 team [for the record i'm not on that team...i wonder if they have an opening for field reporters :-)].  i know that jeff and others team members work hard on channel 9 and reaching out to the community, bringing transparency to microsoft, etc. SIDEBAR:...

wpfe samples and walkthrough

what i love best about new technologies is when developers start figuring things out for themselves and providing knowledge sharing to their peers.  in the case of "wpf/e" that is exactly what dave campbell has been doing lately...and he's updated his site with some latest samples of rectangle animation, etc.  if you haven't seen some of his stuff it is a great place to learn about some of the fundamentals of some things and dave provides some walkthrough as well as tutorial type content. clipping "wpf/e" animated rectangles other code samples (click on the blue circle to start...

vista dev: updated sidebar gadget templates

i did a quick refresh on my windows vista sidebar gadget templates for visual studio.  it is a simple refresh that accomplishes the following: puts both the VB and C# web project templates in the same visual studio content installer moves the structure around to demonstrate how to use locale folders within gadgets (see image below) i get questions on the first one (VB/C# templates) a lot.  really there is no difference between the templates, the only reason i created two is so that when you choose "new web site" it will show up under both language options.  that's...

php interop with .net

thanks to those who joined us for my learn2asp.net session on interoperability with php and windows.  i apologize for the rescheduling (if you even knew about it) that had occurred, but glad you could make it to the session.  in the session i stated that i'd post the information and sample code i referred to on to my blog so here it is :-). in the session i mentioned a few things, so i'll dump them to you here: VS.php - the editor i was using that integrated into Visual Studio 2005 from JCX.Software ADO.NET provider for MySQL...

PHP mash-up sample code

thanks to all who attended my learn2asp.net session on creating mash-ups with php on windows and using microsoft web api's.  whew, that was a mouthful.  anyway, i said i'd post the sample code i used, so here it is (at the end of this post).  in the zip file there is an index.php file describing the APIs used.  I stripped out my personal application id's from some of the services, so you'll have to obtain your own. there are plenty of other sessions going on the learn2asp.net site so i'd encourage you to take a look at them and register. ...

ajax: interface training dvd

i was just sitting on a plane with simon back from redmond where i was doing some mobility developer "stuff" and simon was at some top secret, could-tell-you-but-i'd-have-to-kill-you type things.  we were chatting about, well, you know geek stuff.  i was droning on about some vista stuff and he was talking about the smart stuff he works on. it reminded me about their (them being interface, who simon is one of the 'fellows' -- well if he isn't they should institute some plan) ajax training.  he put together some great content on asp.net ajax in a self-paced DVD format and...

using c# and vb in the same web project

every once in a while i get asked if you can have both c# and visual basic in the same web site project.  my gut response is always to ask "why would you want to" as i always assume it is a new project, etc.  to me, it simply wouldn't make sense from a new project standpoint, code reviews, coding standards, continuity, project maintenance, etc. however, people still ask.  to-date i never really tried (and that's been my answer).  i was presented with a usable scenario of why you may need (not want, need) to do this, so i finally...

smartpart + ajaxbasepart = yummy

eric schoonover pointed me to what jan completed late last night -- implementing ajax support in the smartpart...yippee... check out the smartpart for sharepoint now with asp.net ajax support! tags: sharepoint, moss 2007, sharepoint 2007, windows sharepoint services, ajax control toolkit, ajax, asp.net, asp.net ajax, microsoft ajax, ajaxbasepart, web part, smartpart, smart part, jan tielens

code camp: utah spring camp announced!

the gang up in utah is organizing a code camp!  they have a call for speakers going on RIGHT NOW. currently they have a developer and SQL track planned and are looking for speakers to present.  you don't have to be an expert...if you have an idea to share and speak about -- sign up!  code camps are a great mechanism to learn with your peers. if you are interested in speaking, contact Pat Wright at [email protected] (put "code camp speaker" in the subject line). tags: code camp, utah, utah code camp

sharepoint: feedreader and flash web part on moss 2007

over the past few weeks i've been getting a few requests for if my web parts work on sharepoint 2007 (also referred to as moss).  well to be honest, time has been getting the better of me and i hadn't had a chance to test. well tonight i fired up a windows sharepoint services 2007 instance and loaded the web parts AS IS to see what they did after that i loaded them up.  here's the flash web part in action: and here's the feedreader in action: they rendered without issue for me.  there is something funkadelic in the upper left corner that i...

ajax: using update animation without server control

i recently wanted to add some more visual cues to my application when a search was happening.  i already had the "searching, please wait..." note on there, but since my app was an 'in your face' application experience, i thought i could make that message more in your face as well.  so i added a fade effect to the entire map control as seen in this image: as you can see when the search button is clicked, the entire virtual earth map control fades out until the results come back.  so my only problem (as i wanted to use...

geocoding with virtual earth and windows forms

there's been some questions to me and in my local community about my vague references to my geocoder provider (sorry andrew).  the demonstration/explanation of that provider is here in my "geocode provider" post (not sure why i didn't make that part of the code gallery originally, apologies -- it now is).  i hope that helps. i've also just uploaded an example of how you can use virtual earth for geocoding...i've wrapped it in a windows forms app to show that you can leverage virtual earth in a windows forms application as well.  i hope that helps. basically what happens is...

sample: wcf, wf, wpf and free code

trying to wrap your head around .net 3.0 technologies?  well, here's a free sample to help you see several different aspects of it.   DinnerNow is a sample application that leverages all aspects of .net 3.0 -- and the source is provided!  workflow -- it's there, communication foundation? -- yep.  sprinkle in some cardspace and some wpf and there is a full application with different aspects demonstrated. this sample is a pretty good starting guide (with some advanced features) to learn these technologies. check it out at www.dinnernow.net and download the code! tags: dinnernow, wcf, wpf, workflow, .net, asp.net, asp.net...

implementing a proximity search in sql server

or "find stuff near me" and how i did it. (long read sorry) after my last post about using the proximity search article for sql server 2000, i received some requests for a simple walkthrough on how i implemented my app.  well, here's an attempt at a very simple sample. first, so we are clear, my scenario was as follows: given a known single point, search a database of other known points and return a result set of those points that are known to be within a certain mile radius of the single known point.  better put "find locations near...

proximity searching in zip codes

recently i was working on a proof of concept for virtual earth, etc.  i wanted to do better "find stuff near my address" but have never worked with geospacial proximity before.  so on the quest i went for more information.  i wanted something better than my "select * where zipcode = @zip" query :-).  i was looking for "select * where proximity is within 5 miles of @zip" to show some true calculation. a friend of mine turned me on to this article regarding implementing proximity searching on sql server 2000.  i read it and it was intriguing (and works...

visual studio keyboard shortcuts

we've been handing out these keyboard shortcut pamphlets at various conferences around the world.  now i'm glad to say you can download them online now rather than wait for your lazy busy developer evangelist to bring them to you! download links: visual c# keyboard shortcuts visual basic keyboard shortcuts have fun! tags: visual studio, keyboard shortcuts

'the kingdom' trailer available

if you read this blog (and the boring non-technical stuff) you'll remember that where i live they had been filming a movie called 'the kingdom' with jaime foxx and jennifer garner (among others).  well, the trailer is now available.  i'm seriously amazed at how real the movie looks given that i saw the set and how it was constructed -- filmmakers and set producers and cinematographers are amazing. anyway, here's some pics... this one is jaimee foxx on the Red Mountain 202 freeway in north mesa: this one is actually on the set that was by my house:...

ajax security: upcoming webcasts look promising

looks like joe has partnered with spidynamics to deliver some great webcasts on ajax security, a much needed topic as we continue to see more ajax-developed web sites. here's the titles he's offering: AJAX Security Basics- The Building Blocks to Protecting Your Applications Built with ASP.NET AJAX How Hackers Reverse Engineer and Exploit an ASP.NET AJAX Application The Brave New World of AJAX Hacking (and prevention using ASP.NET) The Next Generation of AJAX Attacks – A New Generation of Attack Theories Best Practices: A Look at Developer ASP.NET AJAX Security Mistakes tags: asp.net ajax, atlas, ajax,...

web dev: mix07 open for business

Microsoft MIX 07 event is open for registrations. Geared toward Web developers, designers, online advertising professionals and a broad set of partners and customers, MIX will continue to explore how to build more interactive and responsive experiences that take full advantage of the capabilities of the Web. MIX will also be an opportunity to dive deeper into Microsoft’s Web technology offerings and discover ways to create more dynamic customer connections that take user experience to the next level. Again this year, the event will be held in Las Vegas from April 30th to May 2nd, at the Venetian Hotel. More...

dev: southwest (US) vista and office launch links

i've been getting some feedback about finding the correct registration links for the upcoming launch events... here they are: Phoenix Main Launch event (Developer and IT Professionals): Jan 17 - register here Las Vegas Developer: Jan 30 - register here Las Vegas IT Professional: Jan 30 - register here Albuquerque Developer: Feb 13 - register here Albuquerque IT Professional: Feb 13 - register here Denver Developer: Feb 15 - register here Denver IT Professional: Feb 15 - register here if you have ever been to launch event for microsoft in the past you'll know that you usually get some...

wpf/e: mouse tracking and asp.net ajax

simon is at it again, here's another sample that does some mouse-tracking with asp.net ajax callbacks -- replaying previous user entries, etc. check it out: wpf/e mousetracking tags: asp.net ajax, ajax, wpf/e

vista and office dev: creating preview handlers

(long, informative post with images -- apologies aggregates...click on the link :-)) in outlook 2007, when you have an attachement in a mail message and click on the attachment file, you are presented with an option to preview this attachment directly in outlook...just like the preview pane for a normal message: likewise in vista's file explorers, you can enable a preview pane and get the same functionality for highlighting a file in explorer as seen here: for productivity, namely in outlook 2007 for me, this is a great advancement to the platform.  i now don't have to double-click...

save the date: professional developers conference 2007

microsoft has confirmed the next professional developer conference (pdc) for 2007 will be in los angeles, ca october 2-5, 2007.  mark your calendars now! watch http://msdn.microsoft.com/events/pdc for updates. tags: pdc, professional developer conference, microsoft, developer, visual studio, .net, asp.net

game dev: xna game studio express released

today over at the xna team blog, michael klucher announced the release of the xna game studio express.  this is a free tool to aid in the development of pc and xbox360 game development. yes, xbox360.  .net + xbox360. how you say?  well, although the xna game studio express tools are free, the ability to deploy them to the xbo360 will require membership in the xna creator's club.  oh sure, wha'ts that a million dollar fee? actually no.  it's $99 US a year.  pretty reasonable i would say.  this helps you get it on the xbox and in the creator's...

using virtual earth 4 and asp.net ajax

i recently hit a weird snag when i went to change a sample application from using virtual earth version 3 to version 4. with doing nothing at all but changing the "v3" text in the virtual earth control reference to "v4" i suddenly got this error message: "Sys.InvalidOperationException: Object Microsoft already exists and is not a namespace.” my VE control reference was in my <head> tag, and as soon as I moved it within the body tag, the error went away and all is well.  so there you have it -- if you are getting this error of course...

sharepoint and firefox: no rich editor for you

okay, not entirely true.  i recently got a comment on how sharepoint might not make it in a company because one of the features, a rich editor for html that is used in rich edit areas, wiki, blog, etc., does not support firefox as a browser.  basically you can still edit, but you don't get the WYSIWYG environment. well, there are a couple of options.  first, the hack (i haven't even tried this to be honest so i shouldn't even be announcing it :-)).  in web.config (since sharepoint 2007 is an asp.net app) you can add <browserCaps> elements to the...

flickr4office: office add-ins for your pleasure

building upon the model of Flickr4Writer, i decided to take a look at doing some simple add-ins for Outlook and Office to look at vsto and the extensibility vsto se has offered the developers.  i started documenting some of my findings in part 1 of office dev.  i'll continue that in a later post and ask some questions there as well. for now, i wanted to let you know that the two add-ins i created are ready for your consumption, source included. Flickr4Outlook - enabling inserting of images from your Flickr account into a new mail message. Flickr4Word - you...

developing on vista: sidebar gadgets part 2

i've been playing around with the vista sidebar gadget lately and trying to dabble in developing some gadgets.  i must tell you, i feel with ajax, gadgets, wpf/e event handling, that i'm taking a step back to the good ol' days of 1998.  javascript everywhere.  in part 1 i created some helper templates for the structure...i should modify these a bit on some learnings i had (mainly localization and referencing), but they'll work in most instances. gadgets are no different.  in fact, a sidebar gadget is really nothing more than DHTML content with some flair.  i also must admin, the...

express yourself with avalon in the browser: wpf/e

today, microsoft announced the first preview of the windows presentation foundation (formerly codename "avalon") everywhere framework (aka wpf/e).  so what is it? essentially wpf/e is a strategy of bringing that rich windows presentation foundation (wpf) experience to the web.  oh yeah, but only internet explorer right? wrong.  ie, firefox, safari, opera.  bring it.  the december ctp of wpf/e includes support for windows media technologies, 2d animation, vector graphics, etc.  it is an interesting technology -- check it out. okay, so the other cheesy part of my post title was alluding to the other part of the announcement today...the expression...

zune: podcast listening and viewing

i'm trying to hold off installing itunes just for podcatching.  i tried pwop catcher, but it looks like the project has gone dark for a bit and didn't have what i needed. my friend turned me on to primetime podcast receiver.  so far it is okay.  it still isn't itunes, but i'm going to give it a whirl.  i've configured it to dump the podcasts/videoblogs into my Music\Zune folder so it will sync when i tell it to. that's all for now on zune for a bit (maybe :-) ).  i think i'll work on doing some development for some...

barcamp phoenix

join the community for the phoenix barcamp -- lots of good stuff boiling up there (and i'm pretty sure i'll be bringing some stuff to give away where i can!)...more details here http://barcamp.org/BarCampPhoenix tags: barcamp, foocamp, barcamp phoenix

BLINQ and IE7

my compadre ai was hacking away on some linq/blinq stuff the other day (well last week or so, i took a long time looking at the issue myself because i was in vegas last week) and found that the default BLINQ'd site does not render well at all in ie7. well, it turns out the css isn't too friendly.  i initially put in the latest css adapter base into a BLINQ'd site and it worked fine, but paulita quickly pointed out a much simpler fix. she outlines it here: fix CSS for blinq'd sites in IE7 tags: asp.net, asp.net ajax,...

developing on vista: sidebar gadgets part 1

i've been experimenting developing windows vista sidebar gadgets lately.  one thing that is lacking is a core template for all things sidebar gadget (or at least i've not found one). i'll save my thoughts on developing a sidebar gadget for a 'part 2' post once i finish the simple one i'm working on (well, not 'simple' but simple enough with some different features). in the meantime, i've cooked up some sidebar gadget templates for visual studio 2005.  now keep in mind that sidebar gadgets don't themselves run c# or vb code, but they are HTML, Javascript, etc. files that interact.  so...

mobile developers: 'dash' to t-mobile

shh...don't tell anyone...some sweet deals on windows mobile devices, including the new dash.. click here: super-secret-t-mobile-page Technorati tags: t-mobile, windows mobile, windows mobile 5, dash

devconnections day 2: who's line is it anyway?

so i've decided that i'm likely not going to see any sessions at devconnections.  i'm doing some major booth duty :-) -- but that's okay, the conferences are for the attendees to hammer on the microsoft guys anyway...i enjoy listening to the questions. today we have Greg Proops (who at least i know from the show who's line is it anyway? running around the conference and harrassing people.  okay, he's not doing much of that, but this guy is funny.  we had a chance to talk with him as well...he was pretty funny and asked us some great questions about...

devconnections day 1: big dev announcements

following the rtm announcement of office 2007 (if you hadn't heard), the evening keynote at devconnections had ScottGu give the following announcements: ASP.NET AJAX Beta 2 Visual Studio Tools for Office 2007 note: this is being made as a free download to licensed VS2005 Pro users as well as VSTO2005 licensed users Visual Studio 2005 extensions for .NET 3.0 (Workflow) Visual Studio 2005 extensions for .NET 3.0 (WCF/WPF) .NET 3.0 Visual Studio 2005 extensions: SharePoint Services 3.0 lots of great stuff and i'm sure more to come this week! tags: visual studio, vsto, office, vista, .net, asp.net, ajax,...

seattle code camp moved

due to a last minute change, the venue for the seattle code camp this weekend has been moved.  please update your calendars appropriately and please help spread the word! it has been moved to DigiPen (which actually might be quite better): DigiPen is located at 5001 150th Ave NE, Redmond, WA 98052 tags: code camp, seattle code camp, pacwest tech events

john lam joins microsoft

okay, now that john let the cat out of the bag himself, i'm glad to say that john lam of rubyclr fame has joined microsoft and will begin january 2007. see john's post: dynamic languages, microsoft and me for his story. i think this is a great hire for microsoft and the clr team.  will this mean ruby will instantly be a part of the .net framework and take on the roadmap of an ironpython-ish project?  let's wait and see.  i, for one, hope so and welcome john to the organization -- a great move for the clr guys. tags:...

ie7 released

well, it's out in the wild now -- ie7 has been released.  you can read dean's (gm for IE) note on the IEBlog regarding the release. now that it is out -- and likely windows update people will start downloading it, there may be some adjustments that sites may want to consider.  why?  because even in ie7 we are more standards compliant to the point that ie7 may break some of the hacks you had to do in ie6 browsers, etc. to understand more about ie7 development here are some resources: IE7 Readiness Toolkit IE Developer Center two great...

vsts db edition coming to a city near you

don't miss out on this opportunity to view the visual studio team edition for database professionals event! visit http://www.teams-deliver.com to find an event near you and register! tags: vsts, visual studio, team system, teamdata, data dude

AJAX500 - accelerate your web development

                     Interface Technical Training and Microsoft have partnered to present AJAX500, a one-day intense seminar designed to accelerate your web development with ASP.NET AJAX technologies.  In this one-day session you will learn: The simplest, most scalable ways to add AJAX support to your applications When using an AJAX library beats hand-coded JavaScript The reality of cross-browser support (it may surprise you!) Technical concerns of file size, testing and debugging Common AJAX design patterns How and when to extend the ASP.NET AJAX libraries this is a great opportunity to hear from local experts. ...

carl franklin has competition

okay, so everyone knows carl is talented...it's clear from one of his latest entries into the mtv generation with the vista slip song. well, lookout carl, competition in the geek musical arena is on the rise.  latest entry? dan wahlin and spike xavier.  inspired by years of development, carpal tunnel syndrome, and buried in the world of technical acronyms, they bring you a new type of music, Hevay .NETal and here's the first release: DLL Hell. oh yeah, geeks unite. tags: dll hell, .net, wahlin

visual studio team system chat OCT 4

sorry for the late notice, but if you haven't heard (and are interested), there will be a visual studio team system chat tomorrow at 10:00 am "california" time (for those of us 'zonies who don't convert time really well) -- that's 10:00 AM PDT for the rest of you. come join members of the vsts team to talk about features available and features to come (database edition).  bring your tough questions! join the chat on wednesday, oct 4 @ 10:00am PDT links: chat link, calendar link, local time converter tags: visual studio, visual studio team system, team system, team foundation...

deploying office 2007 add-ins

UPDATE: visit http://timheuer.com/blog/archive/2006/10/01/13547.aspx for the link to download SnopeIt! if you've installed the visual studio tools for office beta 2 second edition (man everytime i read our product names, it hurts), you'll notice that when you create an add-in project, it automatically creates a setup project along side it for you -- great idea (since you'll need a method to deploy it anyway). when i started to play around with the vsto tools and my SnopeIt add-in, the installer wasn't working for me.  it deployed fine, but outlook was giving a runtime load error.  after some investigation i figured it was something...

moss 2007 in action

bill pointed out this great example of moss2007 in action, in use, full-featured, and guess what...it doesn't "look" like sharepoint.  it's the sharepoint european conference site.  the site seems well organized and even uses the infopath form server features as a part of the registration form. talk about dogfooding!  well done! tags: sharepoint, moss, office 2007, infopath, bill simser

.net guidance explorer

back in june, there was a release from the patterns and practices team of their .NET and ASP.NET Guidance Explorer.  it is a tool that provides some analysis and resulting suggestions (with reasons/instructions on how to implement) for ASP.NET projects. well, the team has just placed the guidance explorer on codeplex.  what is cool about this is not only can you look at how the explorer works, you also get source to the user interface to see how they may have done some cool things.  go check it out. codeplex is growing to be quite an interesting microsoft community.  my...

windows live writer updated

well, one reason i haven't updated tag4writer (which i now consider to be an archived project -- at least i won't be touching it) is that tagging support is now added into the latest refresh of windows live writer: the tagging support now included was exactly the direction tag4writer was heading with exposing the templates for configuration, etc.  you'll notice the tagging support in writer has some cool memory-sense (intellisense-ish). along with tagging support, here are some other updates: blogger beta categories changes improved startup improved style detection and some others... learn about all the updates and...

writer plugins on gallery

windows live gallery now has a category for windows live writer.  flickr4writer just released a new version with better performance and more streamlined options (yeah, there were too many buttons with icons ;-) and you had no idea what did what).  The latest version is on windows live gallery as well as the current release on codeplex. tags: windows live, live writer, live, windows live writer, flickr4writer, tag4writer, gallery, codeplex

web dev summit summary

well, i'm a little late to the game on the summaries -- drewby and hollywood were blogging fiends this time around... you can read the summary from their sides here (drew) and here (dave). a few of the attendees were blogging it as well: John C. Bland II: start here and work your way current -- some good note taking/insight.  John also quite possibly got the "youtube" moment of the 3 days and actually did capture it on camera.  apparently the event bus got in a bit of a fender-bender (and that being a ratio of a charter bus...

msft web developer summit

i'm in redmond the rest of this week for the 'microsoft web dev technology' summit.  similar in nature to mts, however much more web developer specific (hence the name).  there are about 25 people here from various non-msft technology worlds, mostly php (with a hint of java/rails/css). john bland is here and had this first comment regarding some of the microsoft people he's met: All of them were cool. I honestly thought they’d be ultra techie or something but, well…some are techie but none ultra, most of them are very open to other worlds, etc. So far, it is a...

social networks, ownership and consistency

who really owns a social network? when we moved into our neighborhood, my wife decided to rally some troops and organized some women around the 'hood for various reasons.  she started a babysitting co-op where the currency is popsicle sticks and communication is done via a yahoo group.  you need a babysitter for 2 kids for 3 hours?  send a note to the group and within hours (usually minutes) you'll have someone willing to take you up on it...that will be 6 sticks please.  it has worked out great and is totally self-sustaining.  the neighborhood has virtually free babysitting for...

a tool for your gullable family and friends

well, i decided to play around a bit with the new visual studio tools for office second edition that was released today.  a while back (actually at codeslam before the microsoft mvp summit), i was talking with richard Hundhausen about some ideas to code about -- he needed a good one.  he came up with the idea of an outlook add-in for those people who keep thinking that bill gates will send you $5 if you forward the email to 11 of your friends. an add-in that would simply scour snopes.com to see if it is a hoax.  i decided...

foxit reader 2.0 released!

my favorite pdf reader had a new release a few days ago, get foxit reader 2.0! (with an installer finally).  for those that don't know anything about this reader, it will make you wonder what the heck adobe acrobat reader actually does with all that space -- foxit is lean and mean...and free. tags: foxit reader, foxit, pdf

live local updated!

windows live local has been updated along with live.com release! i just saw some announcements that live.com is 'released' as well as live local is updated.  i've been using live.com for a while and while the 'infinite scroll' is no longer there, it isn't much new to me as i've been dogfooding the service for a long while now -- and i like it -- i haven't had to go back to google all but 5 times in the past 4 months...and yes, i reported the reasons why. for live local, i was curious if updated imagery was available as...

calling all plugin developers!

the windows live writer team has just announced that they will be supporting a new section in the windows live gallery for writer plugins.  this is a great opportunity to get your plugins ready for primetime and ensure that you are listed in the directory.  jeff has been doing a good job keeping track, but now he won't have to worry about it :-). submissions aren't automatic, so be sure to review the criteria.  namely, you need to ensure that you are putting them in an installer package (apparently the preferred is an MSI - more on my opinion here)...

codeplex project owners: update your homepage!

there have been a lot of interesting projects showing up on codeplex lately.  i want to learn more. when you submit a project request, you enter details about the project.  unfortunately, those details *do not* get transferred to your project wiki/homepage when the project is approved. so what happens is a short teaser blurb is in the 'most recent' and project directory, but when you click on the project, you get nothing :-(.  i agree, the details you submitted should be automatically put on the homepage of the project. but until that happens (if it even will), please, please, please,...

flickr4writer: another update you will want

okay, so one thing was bothering me about the flickr retrieval and sizing for thumbnails, the performance. so, i implemented a background worker process and wow, what a difference in the user experience. please get this 1.1.60817.1 update instead of the other...trust me. tags: flickr4writer, windows live writer, windows live, writer, flickr

microsoft and open source

there's been a lot of coverage lately about open source and microsoft projects, namely sparked by the 'death of ndoc' postings all over the internet.  this has caused me some pause to reflect on why...and i'm not sure i have the answer, but it is just interesting to see the surroundings discussions on this. here's one comment i found interesting (speaking on ndoc, etc. -- tools ported from java tools)... The big difference is that the ports are usually maintained by a single person or a very small team whereas the Java tools have a thriving community supporting them...

vista - virtual pc and iso mounting

i just got a note from jamesb who is an AZGroups.com frequenter.  he reports that he got vista running on a vpc.  while some may have already done this, others have struggled still.  james pointed to a resource that helped him get it running using microsoft virtual pc (now free). he used: vista on virtual pc he noted to me that it is running on 812MB RAM and took >8GB of the drive -- oh yeah, and took about 14 hours to install...yikes. just a reminder that vista on vpc isn't a good experience at all and you aren't getting...

code camp, oscon, oscamp, no fluff, oh my

well i just wrapped up 12 consecutive days of conference attendance.  whew, i'm spent.  and i'm taking it out on my family...shame on me...yeah, the ones i haven't seen in 12 days.  sometimes that tension just gets wound up.  and no i don't mean taking it out on them physically, so hold off on calling the authorities...just, you know, stressed out and feeling behind...and they get the brunt of your bad attitude.  i'm working on it. enough of the babble...that's not what you're here for -- you're still here right? well, i have to say, i've witnessed several different types...

no fluff: day 3

i started out the day attending software tools that make life easier with jared richardson.  jared took an interesting approaching describing 'a tale of two shops' where in reality it was the same dev shop within 6 months and using two different methodologies...namely the shop got better when implementing source control management (scm) tracking, testing, etc. he had a lot of ground to cover in the short time and really only got to detail in on scm.  he concentrated on talking about subversion mainly, but did poll the audience on what is being used.  there was subversion, cvs, perforce and...

no fluff: day 2, part 2

my day at no fluff just stuff continued with some ajax sessions. i say in on justin gehtland's talk on javascript programming.  justin is from relevance, the same guys bringing streamlined out to the market this past week (and as he tells me a new build on monday). justin said his favorite languages in order are: javascript, ruby, java, c#, and everything else.  yeah! c# made the list ;-).  he's a brave man with his first two being duck-type languages.  it was a good overall discussion on javascript, but nothing i didn't already know -- i think a lot of...

oscon 2006: day 2.0

the second day of the normal conference proceeded along the same path.  keynotes that are 20 minute vignettes again.  i'm not sure why it bugs me so much, but it does.  i think because of this i'm pre-disposed not to get much value out of them...and i didn't. the next session i went to was the history of copyright and what it means to open source by karl fogel.  karl was formerly with collabnet, and is now with google.  i have to say, karl immediately lost credibility with me on his approach.  to me he committed the cardinal sin of...

oscon 2006: day 0.1

i'm spending this week at oscon, the open source conference sponsored by o'reilly.  it's one of *the* conferences for the open source community, bringing together developers and such from all over using various types of open source software and for others to learn from their good/bad experiences and get some general education as well. for me, as an employee of the perceived enemy, you may wonder: wtf?  well, that's a good question.  in my team's role, one of our passions is to understand any opposition and help change perception.  difficult?  sometimes.  yes there are zealots (every side has them), but...

no msde for you, vista

there is an interesting discussion going on over at eric nelson's blog.  why?  simple, here's the title of the post: Time to move on from MSDE to SQL Server 2005 Express (you do want to run on Windows Vista - don't you?) eric has great points about the reasons for sql 2005 express edition (which is still free and has better features), but i have to admit, i winced at the decision myself...the comments are very interesting to read. tags: msde, sql server express, sql server 2005, sse

some cool interactive sites

a friend of mine who's a designer/developer type of fella turned me on to some interesting links today, and i thought i'd share. first, Max Kiesler -- a 'strategic designer' -- he has a ton of posts on ajax designs, etc. -- interesting reads for web developers second, is computerlove...a fun site, but as a golf fan, here's one of the links (in case it isn't on the home page when you visit) that i thought was awesome: a phantom5 digital camera (4000 shots per second) captures tiger woods' golf swing.  very cool. and design 101 for programmers :-) tags: ajax, atlas, web2.0, tiger...

free sharepoint development book

if you are jealous of the people who got the book at teched, well you can get it for free (in PDF form) now. 7 Development Projects with the 2007 Microsoft Office System and Windows SharePoint Services 2007 whew, as if our product names weren't long enough...here's the short version: 7 Dev Projects with MOSS 2007. UPDATE: Leaving a comment below asking for the book will do you no good.  I don't own the book, nor did I ever distribute it...this was a link provided at this time over 3 years ago. tags: sharepoint, moss, office

primecondition.com beta uses atlas

[warning: if you are reading in an aggregator, this post has some video, so visit the site if you can’t see it] well, some cool stuff hapening in the land of heat.  two really smart guys have been working on a project that one of them alluded to earlier this year. well, i’ve been invited to beta test the site/product.  this isn’t necessarily a review of the product…i’ll have to download the end result and get motivated to exercise first :-), but i thought their use of technology use is cool and they are microsoft developers who are passionate about technology. i think simon got motivate when...

Valleyschwag Shipment #2

the latest valleyschwag shipment came -- check out the goods! tags: valleyschwag, web2.0

eweek open source vs .net

eweek labs did a bake off recently and published some findings yesterday in their eWEEK Labs Bakeoff: Open Source Versus .Net Stacks article. some soundblogbytes: Even if the .Net stack had bombed convincingly in these tests, it would probably still maintain popularity in many companies. But its strong showing should give companies confidence that the .Net stack will handle most high-level enterprise needs. the one thing that i didn’t like about the article was the raw publishing of the test results…

kool im - ajax web messenger

a while back anand and i saw some stuff about meebo while at a conference.  today i just saw that Kool IM was released.  same concept really, a web-based-super-nifty-ajax-enabled messenger ‘client’ that enables access to all messenger clients. one thing that strikes me as odd is how willing we’d be to give a third party our login information…isn’t that one reason why everyone hated the passport idea? anywhoo…check it out: Kool IM tags: kool im, ajax, messenger, im

ms funds odf open source project

today, microsoft is announcing a funding of a project to build the Open XML Translator, which is a set of tools to translate between office openxml and odf documents. msft is also announcing an interop center for office 2007, which apparently is an add-in for office 2007 where you'll get PDF XLS and ODF interop. anyhow, interesting news -- probably moreso that msft is funding this open source effort for three partners for a project hosted on sourceforge...hey, couldn't they at least have said codeplex? ;-) tags: codeplex, odf, openxml

interesting blogging from a flex-er

some interesting posting going on over at john c. bland ii site. john is a great guy who is well versed in the adobe realm of things (digging flex right now) and attended our mix conference and (i think) actually walked away with an appreciation (and changed perception) of what we are doing on some of the user experience areas. his post on installing vista beta2 his post on toying with the expression tools tags: asp.net, vista, wpf, expression, acrylic, sparkle, cider, avalon

best practices for asp.net

along with the other ‘best practices’ analyzers that have been released (sql, security, etc.), microsoft’s now released one for asp.net 2.0! pretty cool: The Best Practice Analyzer ASP.NET (alpha release) is a tool that scans the configuration of an ASP.NET 2.0 application. The tool can scan against three mainline scenarios (hosted environment, production environment, or development environment) and identify problematic configuration settings in the machine.config or web.config files associated with your ASP.NET application. This is an alpha release intended to gain feedback on the tool and the configuration rules included with it. download best practice analyzer asp.net tags: asp.net

hard core css - interface redesigned

i just noticed the boys at interface (simon and spike — i’d link to spike, but he hasn’t told me his blog yet ;-)) completed their redesign of the interface site. if you’ve ever met simon or heard his philisophical tirades on how you are evil if you ever implement a <td> element for positioning, you’ll notice the site is some serious css goo.  i bet if you took the stylesheet away it would be all sorts of white-as-milk love. anyhow, mad props to simon and spike (and whomever else geeked out on it).  interface for me locally is a premier partner,...

doclibutils source code released

following releasing code for feedreader, the source for doclibutils is now available as well. this is far less mature and has a few known scripting issues, but now those can tinker away! codeplex: DocLibUtils

.net v3 install white paper

via jasonz: there is a new white paper posted on msdn outlining .net fx 3.0 install/detection/etc.

FeedReader open sourced...finally

well, for those that have been emailing, i hope you stayed subscribed.  feedreader has finally found a home and the complete source code is available.  as i’m sure most of you have reflected the code ;-) you’ll know it isn’t brain surgery, but that there are probably some things that could be cleaned up and we know there are areas that need to be fixed. so visit the feedreader codeplex today and get the source released under the creative commons attribution-sharealike 2.5 license. remember, the purpose of open source is to share :-D, so be sure to contribute back your fixes and...

origami for subtext updated

i’ve updated the origami skin for subtext…although gotdotnet is having some problems and i can’t upload it just right now. i’ve fixed a few things thanks to phil and matt pointing out some areas…namely fixed css for safari, opera and ie6 removed the need for modifying the DTP.aspx body element fixed the cookie preservation of the user personalization areas fixed the css images references there are still a few config things that you have to do for your config that will be outlined in the README file. there are still some things i’m working on and one thing that i had (google ad support) was screwing up...

new skin for subtext users

well after installing subtext and lurking around, i decided i was sick of the “designed by tech” skins.  don’t get me wrong, most of them were good, but let’s be honest…they are designed by non-designers most of the time. after hunting around, i realized that i’d been playing around with ruby on rails lately and as well with typo.  i remembered that an author had created a pretty cool theme for typo called ‘origami’ — well i downloaded it, deciphered all the references and created my swag at a subtext skin based on that. lo and behold, what you are viewing is...

php is better because it's free

recently i posted an opinion to one of my local user group lists in response to something that irks me as of lately.  granted a few years back this may have been a valid statement, but i don’t think it is anymore. the comment was something along the lines of this (paraphrasing): why use asp.net when you can use php and get what you need for a fraction of the cost. it caused me pause to consider the various scenarios, but i’ll settle for simplicity on the hosted scenario for comparison, because quite frankly, i’m calling b.s. on those type of comments...


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The opinions/content expressed on this blog are provided "ASIS" with no warranties and are my own personal opinions/content (unless otherwise noted) and do not represent my employer's view in any way.