Tuesday, October 30, 2012
I arrived in Seattle Sunday night and filled Monday with meetings, then lined up to register for Build. I'll spare you the photos of the giant lineup that everyone else seems to have taken, and show you these delicious cupcakes from the welcome reception:
For me the most exciting part of the lineup was the revised session schedule I was handed, with lots of sessions on writing Windows Phone 8 apps in native C++. I cheerfully added them to my schedule along with all the existing sessions on C++. (The sessions are recorded so check them out yourself
And I ended up at dinner with a lot of geeks. We were unable to resist a little side by side comparison of our phones:
It sure made me want a 920 - good thing it turns out I'm getting one
Saturday, October 27, 2012
I really enjoyed my evening in Nashville. It was fun answering the question: C++ - Why on earth? I think I even convinced a few of you.
Of course the biggest Nashville attraction for me is my friend Billy Hollis:
Look what a luxurious meeting room they have! Couches and tables and general comfort. And yes, I got to see the inside of the RV:
If I got you interested in C++, you might like some links:
Thanks for the visit, and I hope to be back!
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Is the C++ Renaissance real? Well I'll tell you one thing: conference organizers are way more receptive to all-day C++ sessions than they used to be . I'll be doing yet another one this year. This time it's in Las Vegas Dec 9th, as part of DevIntersection. Here's the abstract:
PRECON04: C++ in 2012: Modern, Readable, Safe, Fast (9:00 AM - 4:00 PM)
C++ is gaining momentum as a development language, so whether you've never used C++ or stopped using it a decade ago, it may be time to brush up on your skills. With a new standard release providing new keywords and capabilities, C++ is a featured language for many of the new Microsoft technologies and enables some amazing speed-ups of your application using libraries like PPL and C++ AMP. What's more, Visual Studio offers tools to native developers that have only been available for managed developers in earlier versions. This all-day workshop will show you what all the fuss is about and give you the skills you need to understand the advantages of C++ today and how to start applying those benefits to your application.
If you're an experienced and current C++ developer, you may not need to come to this session. But if you were thinking you needed a refresher, here's a great way to get one, and at the same time look at some of the cool new stuff that is available to you once you know C++. If you've never written a line of C++ code in your life, but you're solid in C# or Java so you know the basic syntax (if, while, etc) you should be able to follow this session, though it won't teach you all the fiddly bits of C++ syntax and make you a C++ developer from scratch. It should, however, give you the inspiration you might need to go and learn all that fiddly syntax, and understand why we have it.
The workshop costs an extra $399 for conference attendees and will cover a lot of ground: new language and library goodies in C++11, ALM Support for C++ developers in Visual Studio 2012, a quick taste of some PPL and C++ AMP power, and plenty of advice on best practices and modern C++ style.
I hope to see you there! Don't forget, if you register for the conference before Nov 1st, you'll get a tablet!
Friday, October 19, 2012
Microsoft and Stack Overflow are joining forces on a fun Windows 8 development contest. And since one of the strengths of StackOverlflow is how the community reviews all the content, it only makes sense that there's a serious review component to this contest! And it's not US-only (for once!) so as long as you're over 18 and don't live in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan or Syria you're good to go. Well, you need a StackOverflow account, but you needed one of those anyway, right?
Top prize is $5,000 and there are shiny achievements and everything - so get going!
Thursday, October 18, 2012
I love the fact that big-name speakers are willing to come and speak at the East of Toronto .NET User Group. You don't have to live in a big city (or struggle through big-city traffic on a visit) to keep up to date with the latest technology and meet fellow developers. The latest example:
As the website says:
Beth Massi is a Senior Program Manager on the Visual Studio team at
Microsoft. Beth is a community champion for business application
developers and has over 15 years of industry experience building
business apps. She is a frequent speaker at various software development
events and you can find her on a variety of developer sites including
MSDN Developer Centers, Channel 9, and her blog http://www.bethmassi.com. Follow her on twitter @BethMassi
And what will she be talking about?
When and where?
|6:30 - 7:00
|Socialize and refreshments
|7:00 - 8:30
Pickering Central Library
Auditorium (2nd floor)
One the EsplanadeRegister now
Pickering, ON L1V 6K7
- it's a good way to spend a Wednesday night.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Here's an amazing grand finale to the Dot Net Rocks Roadtrip this year -a full on developer conference in Las Vegas, Dec 9th - 12th.
I love this answer to "What is DevIntersection?"
This three-day conference marks the final stop on the USA leg of the .NET Rocks! Visual Studio 2012 Launch Road Trip! DevIntersection is a developer conference PLUS the recording venue for the last stop of the three-month road trip hosted by Richard Campbell and Carl Franklin. We're bringing together some of the best speakers (and our personal friends) for a conference that is relaxed and educational, plus forward looking as you and your company start to figure out what to do with Windows 8 and Visual Studio for the next few years. Our attendees tend to be .NET software developers plus other members of their teams. DevIntersection is an educational onsite conference for anyone who is attached to a .NET development programming project who is looking to use Visual Studio to develop apps for desktop, web and mobile platfoms.
I have two breakout sessions - one on C++ AMP and one on developing for the Windows Store in C++. No .NET in either one of them; this is a conference for expanding your horizons, after all.
For $1595 you get three full days of sessions. And if you register in October (hurry!) you will also get a new tablet. Build sold out in hours, so this is your chance to get access to deep and current information for developers across the Microsoft ecosystem. See you there!
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
I love writing courses for Pluralsight. I can reach a lot of people and I know the production quality will be top notch. My most recent course is Introduction to Visual Studio 2012 Part 1. It's aimed at people who've never used Visual Studio before, but even a seasoned user will learn something from it - just use the cool speedup feature to zip through things that are already familiar, like the difference between a project and a solution. I cover some very nice productivity features and there's sure to be something in there that's new to you.
Another recent Pluralsight development is that the MSDN Subscriber benefit has expanded to cover MSDN subscribers worldwide, not just in the US, and five more courses were added. If you have an MSDN subscription, you can watch all these courses free:
- Agile Team Practices with Scrum
- ALM for Developers with Visual Studio 2012
- ALM with Team Foundation Server 2010
- ALM with TFS 2012 Fundamentals
- Building Windows 8 Metro Apps with C# and XAML
- Building Windows 8 Metro Apps with C++ and XAML
- C# Fundamentals - Part 1
- C++ Fundamentals
- Continuous Integration
- Developing for Windows 7
- Introduction to .NET Debugging using Visual Studio 2010
- Introduction to Building Windows 8 Applications
- Introduction to Visual Studio 2010 - Part 1
- Introduction to Visual Studio 2010 - Part 2
- Introduction to Visual Studio 2012 - Part 1
- Introduction to Windows 7 Development
- Kanban Fundamentals
- Microsoft Fakes Fundamentals
- Solution Modeling with UML in Visual Studio 2010
- Test First Development - Part 1
- Test First Development - Part 2
- Web Application Performance and Scalability Testing
- Windows Azure Diagnostics
- Windows Phone 7 Basics
The bolded ones are mine. Here's how to sign up - do it by Dec 11th 2012 - and get your one year free access to all these great courses!
Monday, October 15, 2012
Hilo is a reference project written in C++/CX for Windows 8 by the Patterns and Practices team. I was delighted to be part of this project and think it turned out very well. I use the Hilo codebase to remind myself how to do certain things when writing a Windows Store app in C++ (something I'm in the middle of doing for another project.) The accompanying document is rich in best practices for Windows 8 development, async work, modern C++, unit testing, and more. Now the latest version has been released, updated for Windows 8 RTM.
Hilo itself is a photo viewer. Before you roll your eyes, bear with me. I actually think it's better than the one that ships with Windows 8. It shows you some of your pictures as a sort of overview:
Click on one to interact with it. You can right-click to bring up both the app bar at the bottom and a nice strip-navigation control at the top:
If you want to see something cool, use Cartoon Effect. This leverages C++ AMP to cartoonize the picture. I've shopped this image a little to reduce the width (pulled the appbar in from the edges) but the cartoon work was done by Hilo - and super quickly.
If you have any thoughts of writing Windows Store apps, and C++ is a possibility for you, get over to Codeplex, download the Hilo code and the .chm file, and get reading!
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