Windows 8 Slate Review

About a week ago, I purchased a Samsung Series 7 Slate PC to learn more about the Windows 8 operating system and to test applications I will be developing primarily with C# and Xaml. The laptop ships with Windows 7 installed, but I quickly wiped the existing install and overlaid it with Windows 8. The…

NuGet Nugget: File-System Based Package Stores

A recent network “hiccup” posed a bit of a challenge to a demo that was built around showing how the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone (WATWP) NuGet packages make it easy to add Windows Azure cloud features to a Windows Phone 7 application.  So how do you access NuGet content when a network connection…

DevBoston (Waltham) Presentation Content

Many thanks to the attendees of my presentation tonight covering Developing Cloud Enabled Windows Phone Applications with Windows Azure.  I apologize once again for the technical network-related gremlins that decided to attack us tonight…hopefully the workaround covered the necessary ground and everyone was able to see the concepts I was trying to show. As promised,…

Silverlight 5 Released: Myth vs. Fact

It is very exciting to see the release of Silverlight 5 today, despite all of the rumors flying around the Web. Read the original release announcement from the Silverlight Team here. This is proof positive the team made a commitment to release a new version by the end of the year and stuck to it.…

Boston .Net Code Camp Presentation Content

I would like to thank the organizers and attendees of the recent 16th (wow!) Boston Code Camp where I did a talk on Developing Cloud-Enabled Windows Phone Applications with Windows Azure – and special thanks to everyone who stuck it out once the snow started falling in order to catch my talk.  Obviously, it took…

Is That a WeakReference In Your Gen 2 or Are You Just Glad to See Me?

Sometimes it’s easy to see why your .NET server application is using so much memory, but other times it makes no sense at all. I was at Microsoft earlier this week and someone who’d taken my debugging class stopped me and asked an excellent question. The scenario they had was their service memory would just…

Using Jounce Navigation to Create OOB Child Windows in Silverlight 5

One of the reasons I prefer to manage navigation as an event, rather than a strongly typed interface or handler, is because it allows for so much flexibility and extensibility in the navigation pipeline. In my Jounce framework, for example, the basic navigation event simply wires up an instance of a view to a view…

Working with PivotViewer and the CxmlCollectionSource

Microsoft’s PivotViewer control is an amazing tool for visualizing data and creating a unique UI for your application.  The one issue everyone seems to have with it, however, is its lack of styling capability.  In fact, working with PivotViewer in Expression Blend yields little in the way of styling or templating.  There are only a…

Boston Phone Camp Presentation Materials

I had a great time talking about the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone at the Windows Phone Camp event in Cambridge, MA earlier today.  I have posted the slide deck here for those who are interested in getting at the web links it contains. If you missed the event and/or are interested in other…

Quick Tip: Design-Time Views for Regions

If you’ve worked with the Region Management pattern before, one source of frustration can be the lack of a design-time view. While you can compose individual views to be designer-friendly, the aggregate views that mark regions often end up devoid of anything useful. A simple little trick, however, can change that. You may be familiar…

Using Visual States to Set Focus on a Control

A common problem encountered in Silverlight applications is how to set the focus properly when transitioning between controls. For example, in the reference application I’m writing for the book Designing Silverlight Business Applications there is the option to either edit an existing record or create a new one. The result of clicking the appropriate button…