Archive | Tech RSS feed for this section

Join us for the seaside Windows 8 Summer App-a-thon on July 12

15 Jun

Windows 8 Summer App-a-thon (Belgian Coast)

The word is out: on July 12 we’ll be organizing the first of our Summer App-a-thons.  And it’s going to be a special, seaside app-a-thon, at the Belgian coast in Blankenberge.  What could be more inspiring for building great Metro-style apps than the sound of waves crashing into the beach, ice cream and a beautiful sunset!

We’re building upon the success of the coding night at the Windows 8 Developer Day and have a hackathon to build cool Metro-style apps.  So team up with your best UX or developer friend and form a killer app team, come alone or sign up with an entire group, whatever you want!

 

This seaside Summer App-a-thon promises to be an experience like N.O. O.T.H.E.R!   Hands on. Code. Build. Shine. Totally Windows 8. 

There will be 2 coding sessions: 1 for Day Birds from 10AM – 4PM and one for Night Owls from 6PM – 12AM. You have 3 registration options:

  1. Only the Day Birds coding session
  2. Only the Night Owls coding session
  3. Both the Day Birds and the Night Owls session  

 

So if you’re a developer or UX designer, sign up right now to join us for an unforgettable experience!

    Sign up


    Technical pre-requisites

    – Familiarity writing either desktop apps, mobile applications or developing websites. Familiarity with either Javascript, C# or C++.
    – Bring your own laptop: any device capable of running Windows 8 and Visual Studio Express
    – Required software: 

    Windows 8 Release Preview
    Visual Studio 2012 RC
    Windows 8 SDK samples

    New Windows Azure Features and Services for spring

    8 Jun

    Yesterday, Microsoft announced previews of new Windows Azure services that help developers build applications that connect data to users across public and private clouds, take advantage of VHDs and deploy scalable websites quickly and cheaply.

    Today, Scott Guthrie will host “Meet Windows Azure” to introduce these new services.  And on Monday, as part of TechEd North America and broadcast live online, Scott, along with Mark Russinovich, Quentin Clark, and Bill Staples will host “Learn Windows Azure” to provide deeper demonstration of the latest Windows Azure features and services to build, deploy, and manage applications in the cloud.

    Among the highlights of the announcements made yesterday:

    • Windows Azure Virtual Machines enable the moving of workloads on virtual hard disks (VHDs) between on-premises environments and the cloud.  Windows Azure supports both Windows and Linux VHD images, which can be customized or chosen from a pre-populated gallery.  With the commonly supported VHD format, developers and IT Pros can move existing workloads like a SQL Server database or an existing line-of-business application into Windows Azure to create greater scale, lower cost or deploy to new users.  It has never been easier to move your applications to the cloud and boost them with virtually unlimited power, flexibility and reliability.
    • Windows Azure Virtual Network enables the creation, extension and management of virtual private networks into Windows Azure.  Organizations can now more effectively and securely extend their corporate networks into the cloud.  Did you ever wish you had an extra couple of servers for running a calculation job or to deal with a peak in user demand?  Now you can seamlessly add and remove computing resources to your network, as your need them.
    • Windows Azure Web Sites makes building .NET, Node.js, Java and PHP web experiences easier and cheaper than ever while supporting deployment techniques like Git and FTP and framework applications like WordPress, Joomla!, DotNetNuke, Umbraco and Drupal that web developers already know and trust. Why should it be hard to setup a website that can scale with user demand, that is always up and running, regardless of the technology you’re using?
    • Python support, new Tools  The new Windows Azure SDK (June 2012) includes updated support for Java, PHP and .NET and adds Python support, while providing 100% command line support for developers using a Windows PC or a Mac.  No matter what your development flavor is, you can build applications that take advantage of Windows Azure and all its building blocks – experience the openness and interoperability of Windows Azure.

     

    To discover, learn and get started building applications on the Windows Azure platform, I encourage you to:

    image Follow the live stream of “Meet Windows Azure” and discover the new Windows Azure services.
    image Tune into Learn Windows Azure on Monday June 11 for a deeper demonstration of what’s new.
    image Set up a trial account for getting free access to Windows Azure.
    image Of course you want to play with these new features! How can you host your own virtual machine in Azure? What is needed to create a PHP web site using MySQL on Azure?
    As of Monday June 11, the Azure Training Kit will be updated and guide you step-by-step through a series of hands-on labs.Download the tools now and get started!

    Is the public cloud still a bit hazy to you? This blog helps lift the fog.

    6 Jun

    When three developers with their heads in the cloud go to work on NET, Java and PHP, the stage is set for a fascinating roadtrip through Azure!
    Hop on board and learn all about hosting apps and cloud data storage.

    Like our bloggers, you have probably heard plenty of dry theory and unconvincing sales patter in your time. You undoubtedly prefer to get your information straight from the horse’s mouth with the kind of case studies and expert personal experience they provide.

    Maarten has been busy putting together a whole load of reasons why those of you who work with .NET might be interested in tinkering with Azure.

    François talks you through his personal journey from “cloud-sceptic, old-school Java developer to convinced, cloud-eager Java developer”.

    Meanwhile, Michelangelo takes a developers’ perspective on how to run your PHP applications on Windows Azure, complete with spiffy diagrams and everything.

    The beauty of the blog is that it’s interactive, so if you have any questions or comments, you can get involved right away.

    Keep up-to-date with news on the capabilities of PHP, .NET and Java within Azure, and look forward to being part of a roadtrip through Azure with three friendly faces.

    Check out the blog here, en stay tuned!

    Windows 8 RP: download and build your apps for Windows Store

    4 Jun

    Windows 8 Release Preview has been made available last week, representing another important quality milestone in the road to Windows 8 General Availability (GA).

    In this post we provide you with the must-know information around what and where to download the bits, the tools and information on how you can count on our support in taking your app to launch.

    Windows 8 Release Preview: downloads

    1. For Windows 8 downloads and ISO files you can go to http://preview.windows.com
    2. For developer downloads you’ll find the developer SDK with Visual Studio 2012 Express for Windows 8 RC and Expression Blend for Visual Studio, remote debugging tools, Live SDK and more: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/apps/br229516.aspx
    3. New samples for Release Preview: Download sample app pack (300 MB)
    4. Updated documentation: http://dev.windows.com
      If you have read through the documentation previously you’ll see that a lot of the content has been updated, this includes both the developer documentation as well as UX Guidelines.

    Changes with Windows 8 Release Preview: the most important resources

    Belgian Apps?

    If you have been following our local activities around Windows 8, ever since our developer event in March Windows 8 Developer Day and Night of Windows 8 (app-a-thon), you know folks are working hard on apps.

    We are very happy to announce that two of our Belgian partners we’ve been working with since the early stages now made it into the Windows Store for Release Preview: Le Soir by Rossel and Slash Monsters by Fishing Cactus/Tokkun Studio. Le Soir is the first European newspaper in Windows Store!

    fishing3lesoir1

    Your app in Windows Store? Loads of stuff coming to you

    As we get closer and closer to the next milestone for Windows 8, locally here in Belgium and Luxembourg we are preparing a bunch of ways to support you along the way into publishing that app in Windows Store by launch – you do want to take that first mover advantage.

    How we’re helping you

    Below you can find a collection of activities and resources coming your way. Or come our way by means of an App Clinic.

    image Training events for developers and designers
    Windows Camps and UX Workshops, check out our Metro map.
    image Seaside coding at the Belgian Coast: Summer App-a-thons on Windows 8 Metro Style Apps.
    When: 12 July (and 8 August in Antwerp)
    app clinic App Clinics: join Evangelists, external developer or Metro UX consultants to discuss any questions on your mind regarding your app.By joining an App Clinic you are also on the right track to get access to App Excellence Labs.
    Lab App Excellence Labs
    When you’ve been in touch with us through an App Clinic and your application is polished enough go to review, you are invited to participate in an App Excellence Lab. This is a 2-hour review of you application with a Microsoft engineer and if you pass the requirements checklist you get a Windows Store Token!
    Because the Store is still closed for public registration for now, this is the only way to get registered and reserve your app name for future fame.
    Have an app ready? Register your interest via the App Clinic form (mention App Excellence Labs) .

    We are looking forward to helping you take advantage of this huge new opportunity to reach millions of users worldwide.
    It’s going to be a hot Summer!

    Starting today you need Windows Phone 7.5 to use Marketplace

    23 May

    Today’s the day. This afternoon we started requiring Windows Phone 7.5 on phones to download, buy, update, or review apps in Marketplace. These changes will make Windows Phone OS 7.5 the minimum OS required to install new or update existing apps from Marketplace via the phone or Web.

    If you are wondering why, I invite you to read this article.

    If you do get the error, all you need to do is install the free Windows Phone 7.5 update. You’ll find all the information you need to do that, including an update checklist and easy step-by-step instructions, on Update Central. (Not sure if you have Windows Phone 7.5 installed? Here’s how to check.)

    By the way, even if you don’t use Marketplace, there are still lots of great reasons to update. We made hundreds of improvements, big and small, in Windows Phone 7.5

    Source : Windowsteamblog

    MEET Windows Azure!

    16 May

    image

    Hear from Scott Guthrie and other senior technologists from Microsoft and the Bay area who will introduce you to Windows Azure and the latest in Microsoft’s cloud-based development technology.

    Register HERE !!!

    How do I build multi-tenant SaaS solutions?

    10 May

    Software as a Service (SaaS) is, simply put, software deployed as a hosted service and accessed over the Internet.  As an ISV, providing your software as a service to your customers has a great number of benefits for both you and your customers. 

    One important benefit of SaaS comes from the potential to increase your addressable market by lowering the cost of providing your software per customer (“catching the long tail”).  Line-of-business software tends to be custom-tailored to meet individual customers’ needs—potentially including on-site installation and service visits from vendor service teams—and often requires dedicated server hardware, and support staff to manage it. The cost of providing this kind of dedicated attention contributes to the minimum price at which you can afford to sell the software. But for every large enterprise that purchases a line-of-business solution, there are dozens of smaller and medium-sized businesses that could benefit from such a solution, but that cannot afford the expense.  By providing your software as a service, the total cost of providing your software to your customers can be lowered significantly.

    Cost of providing software per customerIncrease your addressable market

    For a more detailed overview of architecture strategies to catch the long tail, there is a great MSDN article here (it dates from 2006 but is still very valid).

    Of course, when thinking about software as a service, the concept of cloud computing comes to mind: being able to allocate compute and storage resources flexibly, in a matter of minutes, and paying only for the resources that you need.  To maximize the newly addressable market, you are looking at lowering the cost per customer.  One way to achieve this is to build a multi-tenant solution.

    But wait, haven’t always been told that building multi-tenant applications is a really difficult thing to do?  On top of all the application business logic complexity, you have to invest in automated provisioning and scaling of the infrastructure, tenant metering and billing, identity federation, etcetera.  This is where the Windows Azure platform and the Cloud Ninja & Cloud Samurai projects can accelerate building multi-tenant cloud-based SaaS solutions.

    CloudNinja - Windows Azure Multi-tenant Sample 

    The Cloud Ninja Project is a Windows Azure multi-tenant sample application demonstrating metering and automated scaling concepts, as well as some common multi-tenant features such as automated provisioning and federated identity.  Key features of this project are: metering and metering charts, automated scaling, and federated identity.

    Cloud Ninja architecture

    To further assist you with the metering of tenant resource usage in a multi-tenant solution on the Windows Azure platform, there is now the Cloud Ninja Metering Block.  The need to meter and monitor resource usage at the tenant level is a common requirement for multi-tenant solutions. This metering data is commonly used to enforce quotas, set pricing, understand solution cost breakdown by tenant, generate alerts, or identify tenants which may be abusing the solution.  The metering block ships as a hostable runtime component that can be deployed and hosted in an on-premise windows services, console application; or to Windows Azure either in it’s own role or as part of another role for an existing solution. The metering block comes with a number of providers for collecting metering data from existing logs, and can be extended with custom providers for collecting metering data from other sources, such as custom logs, views, etc…

     

    Cloud SamuraiWhen looking at the Cloud Ninja sample application, you may think: “I already have an application, do I really have to redesign my entire application? Isn’t there an easier way for existing applications?”.  Enter the Cloud Samurai project!  This complete code sample demonstrates a hosted multi-tenant approach on Windows Azure for existing web applications that leverages the IIS Application Request Routing (ARR) extension.

    Cloud Samurai architecture

    Did I already mention that the Windows Azure platform embraces not only .NET developers but is an open platform?  For ISVs or developers that are building Java-based applications and want to leverage the power of the Windows Azure platform, the people at Persistent Systems have developed multi-tenant sample application, called CloudNinja for Java, written in Java which would help the Java community to develop Java applications for Windows Azure. The CloudNinja for Java application will empower Java developers to implement best practices and design patterns required for Java multi-tenant applications on Windows Azure.

     

    Are you already providing your software as a service on the Windows Azure platform? Get started now.

    1. Setup an Account:

    Set up an account and obtain a free subscription for accessing the online portals for Windows Azure an SQL Azure. You can sign up and get the free trial from http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/pricing/free-trial/.

    2. Create your First application and Deploy it on the Windows Azure Platform:

    Download the tools and learn how to create an application using .NET, JAVA, Node.js or PHP and deploy it on Windows Azure at http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/develop/overview/

    %d bloggers like this: