Windows App Developer Links - 2012-05-08

posted on 07 May 2012 | Windows App Developer Links

Visual Studio 11

  • Visual Studio 11 beta - Tooling for SQL Server Compact (ErikEJ)

    • "Visual Studio 11 beta includes SQL Server Compact 4.0 SP1 CTP1, as I blogged about here. In this post, I will describe in greater detail the tooling support included with Visual Studio 11 beta. Notice the Visual Studio 11 is in beta, and things can change before release."
  • Help! Visual Studio 11 Beta Dark Theme incorrectly using White Background (Dave Isbitski)

    • "I ran across an issue with Visual Studio 2011 Ultimate Beta this morning and figured I would share the solution here with everyone. It may exist in Visual Studio 2011 Express Beta as well I just haven't seen it yet myself. The issue began when I installed Visual Studio 2011 Ultimate Beta and selected a Web Developer layout. I later went in and reset my settings to be the C# default layout. When I selected the Dark Theme (which I've now become quite used to) the UI itself switched fine but the code window still had the Light theme colors! Here is a screenshot to illustrate what I mean..."

Metro App Development

  • Windows 8 Metro: Layout, view states and navigation (Andrea Boschin)

    • "The target devices where it is expected Windows 8 to runs are something of really amazing, since it should run from tablet devices of the most various sizes to the the widest monitor. Dealing with various display sizes and with mobile devices requires new capabilities that go beyond the ones required to run on a simple smartphone. First of all you need to adapt the size of your app to the screen, probably reducing or increasing the amount of content you show to the user. Connected with the use of fingers instead of mouse, it is required you are able to use all available space on the screen, expecially with low resolutions. Finally you have to deal with orientation. It is easy and natural to rotate the screen to best fit the content you are using, as an example using a vertical orientation while reading a page."
  • Windows 8 application Theming (Michiel Post)

    • "As a Windows Phone developer I wondered if Windows 8 had the same theming model. With a Dark or a Light theme and an accent color which the user can choose. When you want to do full custom branding for your application, supporting both the Dark and Light theme can be a lot of work with Windows Phone. In Windows 8, you wont have this problem. The user can not choose between a dark or a light theme. You, as a developer, can choose a Dark or a Light theme as starting point for your app. You can do this by setting RequestedTheme="Light" at the top of your App.xaml. The Dark theme is the default. This modifies all the default system styles."
  • CLR 4.5: .Net Framework Kernel Improvements (Ahmed Elmalt)

    • "In this post I'll go through some of the enhancements and improvements done by the CLR team as part of the performance improvements in .Net 4.5. In most cases developers will not have to do anything different to take advantage of the new stuff, it will just works whenever the new framework libraries are used."
  • [Windows 8] How to rescale an image in a Background task ? (Thomas LEBRUN)

    • "In one of his blog post (here or here, for the French version), the Windows 8 Development Master David Catuhe explained how to generate and to rescale a new picture for a tile (secondary or not). This is very useful if you're not able to modify the service delivering the images to rescale them automatically. Its technique need you to use an Image HTML element and, unfortunately, you're not allowed to use graphical components in a Windows 8 background task. So here is the version I propose, which is quite different..."
  • Animated gifs in XAML/C# :) (Jose Fajardo)

    • "Someone the other day tweeted a link to some very cool animated gifs. I love animated gifs!! I have always wanted animated gifs in Silverlight/WPF BUT for reasons unknown they never came. They would have been perfect for A LOT of scenarios where creating storyboard animations would have been overkill. Well turns out WinRT XAML, firmly rooted in Silverlight XAML, also doesn't have GIF support nor will it probably ever get it. BUT it does have WinRT support and it has access to DirectX & WIC via SharpDx!!"
  • Improve Mobile User Experience With an HTML5 Metro UI Tiles (Chris Love)

    • "If you know me you know over the past few years I have been a big fan of Metro UI and the tiles. I have been hacking at doing the Metro UI in web applications for a while now, so there are a lot of things I have learned, and some I have not quite mastered yet. Doing tiles is a big part of Metro and this is a relatively easy trick to pull off using common CSS techniques. I created what I refer to as the FourSquare prototype last summer for my team to build the Moesion home screen."
  • Episode 79 - Adding Push Notifications to Windows 8 and Windows Phone apps using Windows Azure (Channel 9)

    • "In this episode, our very own Nick Harris —Technical Evangelist for Windows Azure and all round good guy — builds on the foundational knowledge presented in Cloud Cover Episode 73 and takes us on a deeper dive into how add Push Notifications to both Windows 8 and Windows Phone applications using MPNS, WNS, Windows Azure and a number of re-usable NuGet packages. The session is code heavy so enjoy!"

Apps & Code to Look At

  • One Bitmap to Rule Them All - WriteableBitmapEx for WinRT Metro Style (Rene Schulte)

    • "A couple of weeks ago we added official WPF support to WriteableBitmapEx. Today I'm happy to announce that WriteableBitmapEx now also officially supports Windows 8 Metro Stlye WinRT .NET XAML. With that WriteableBitmapEx is now available for 4 platforms: WPF, Silverlight, Silverlight for Windows Phone and Metro Style WinRT.NET. Although Direct2D is the best solution for fast 2D graphics with Windows 8 Metro Style, I think there are scenarios where the WriteableBitmapEx could be helpful, esp. when using C# with XAML. I also know that some devs were waiting for this to port their Windows Phone apps to Windows 8 Metro Style."
  • Updated Better Grid Application template (Brent Schooley)

    • "When I posted the "Better Grid Application" template for Metro style app development in XAML, I posted the wrong file. It was an older version of the template. Sorry about that. I have updated the file in the original post but here is the link again:"