Partner Otaku

Musings of a Microsoft Partner Evangelist

Archive for the ‘.net’ Category

Want to be a More Productive Web Developer? Attend the Free 2-day Microsoft Web Camps!

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function WebCamps () {
   Day1.Learn();
   Day2.Build();
}

WebCampsBannerAd300x250Interested in learning how new innovations in Microsoft’s Web Platform and developer tools like ASP.NET 4 and Visual Studio 2010 can make you a more productive web developer? If you’re currently working with PHP, Ruby, ASP or older versions of ASP.NET and want to hear how you can create amazing websites more easily, then register for a Web Camp near you today!

Microsoft’s Web Camps are free, two-day events that allow you to learn and build on the Microsoft Web Platform. At camp, you will hear from Microsoft experts on the latest components of the platform, including ASP.NET Web Forms, ASP.NET MVC, jQuery, Entity Framework, IIS, Visual Studio 2010 and much more.

Web Camps also provide the opportunity to get hands on with labs and get creative by building in teams. All this with Microsoft experts on hand to guide you through.

Space is limited so register now!

US Dates

World Wide Dates

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Written by wesy

April 8, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Windows Azure Sessions at MIX10

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Here’s a list of sessions using “cloud” tags, “Windows Azure Platform” tags and “Windows Azure” tags (there is a slight variance in what you pull up with each – I listed the sessions below using the “Windows Azure Platform” tag. I’ve also included a link to a very interesting session by James Hamilton

Cloud Computing Economies of Scale

James is VP and Distinguished Engineer at Amazon Web Services where he focuses on infrastructure efficiency, reliability, and scaling. Prior to AWS, James was architect on the Microsoft Data Center Futures team and, over the years, has held leadership roles on several high-scale services and products, including Exchange Hosted Services, Microsoft SQL Server, and IBM DB2. James loves all things server related and is interested in optimizing all components from data center power and cooling infrastructure, through server design, to the distributed software systems they host. He maintains a blog at http://perspectives.mvdirona.com.Monday 3:30 PM

Lap around the Windows Azure Platform

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The Windows Azure platform provides a comprehensive set of services for building and running scalable applications targeted at the cloud. In this session we go on a coding tour of the Windows Azure platform. On this tour, see how web applications can use the scalable compute and storage services with Windows Azure, secure connectivity with Service Bus and Access Control Service, and a relational database with Microsoft SQL Azure.

Building and Deploying Windows Azure-Based Applications with Microsoft Visual Studio 2010

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Visual Studio makes it easy to quickly build web applications for the Windows Azure Platform by allowing you to leverage your existing skills as a .NET web developer. In this session, see how to use the new Visual Studio 2010 tools to build, debug, and deploy web applications that target the cloud. We use familiar technologies such as Microsoft ASP.NET and Microsoft SQL Server and call out the key considerations when targeting the Windows Azure Platform. Whether you’re just getting started with Windows Azure or if you’re already a pro, in this session learn new tips and tricks for using the Visual Studio 2010 tools to accelerate the development of cloud applications.

Building Facebook Apps with Microsoft .NET and Deploying to Windows Azure

Jim Zimmerman in Lagoon F on Tuesday at 1:30 PM

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There are so many ways to develop Facebook apps now in .NET. Come and learn how to build Facebook applications with the Facebook Developer Toolkit. Walk through several real-world Facebook web apps in Microsoft ASP.NET and see how to best structure your app. Social media applications require dynamic scalability so a highly scalable computing infrastructure is mandatory to deliver a consistent user experience. Learn how to leverage all the components of Azure to meet the needs of successful viral applications.

Microsoft Project Code Name "Dallas": Data For Your Apps

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“Dallas” enables developers to consume premium commercial and public domain data to power consumer and business apps on any platform or device. Do you need mapping or government data? These datasets and many, many, many more are all available through “Dallas” with a simple and consistent REST-based APIs, simple terms of use, and a simple consumption-based billing model. In this session, you will see how “Dallas” removes the friction for accessing common datasets by enabling you to visually discover, explore, and purchase data of virtually any data type (images, real-time web services, databases, blobs, etc) provided by trusted partners from a single …

Building PHP Applications using the Windows Azure Platform

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The Windows Azure platform has been built from the ground up with interoperability in mind, supporting multiples languages and development tools to build applications which run on Windows Azure and/or integrate with other cloud platforms or on-premises components. Come learn how to run your PHP and MySQL applications on Windows Azure using open source tools & SDKs while taking advantage of new Windows Azure features. This session will cover developing for Windows Azure using PHP, deployment choices, patterns and practices in building & scaling PHP applications using cross platform open source SDKs using a choice of development tools, including command-line tools and Eclipse.

Using Storage in the Windows Azure Platform

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Building big web apps requires unique approaches to storing data. In this session we share hard-won lessons from Azure early adopters on how they’ve combined Microsoft SQL Azure and Windows Azure Storage to handle typical storage needs in the cloud. We discuss sharding and data partitioning approaches and how these can impact transaction throughput in SQL Azure as well as techniques to get the best out of "NoSQL" data stores like Azure Table Storage.

Building Web Applications with Microsoft SQL Azure

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SQL Azure provides a highly available and scalable relational database engine in the cloud. In this demo-intensive and interactive session, learn how to quickly build web applications with SQL Azure Databases and familiar web technologies. We demonstrate how you can quickly provision, build and populate a new SQL Azure database directly from your web browser. Also, see firsthand several new enhancements we are adding to SQL Azure based on the feedback we’ve received from the community since launching the service earlier this year.

Written by wesy

March 30, 2010 at 2:01 pm

Windows Phone 7 Series at MIX 2010

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I just got out of the keynote and I’m really excited about the Windows Phone 7 Series. Pix are worth a thousand words so I’ll post a few here.

IMG_0166 IMG_0188    IMG_0214 grahically_comics (13)

http://www.windowsphone7series.com

Written by wesy

March 15, 2010 at 12:12 pm

Getting Started with ASP.NET

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Trying to find information on our websites is often a frustrating task. I often spend time aggregating information and posting it here. However, multiply this effort by thousands of Microsoft bloggers and it only contributes to the problem.

One of the hardest tasks is trying to find a starting point.  If you’re new to the platform where do you go? Then once you arrive at any number of our sites the real grunt work begins. Change happens over time and I’m glad to say that we’ve redesigned the ASP.NET website.  T

he four large buttons at the top of the home page make it simple:

aspnethome

Click Getting Started and you find 5 choices

image

Click Number 2 and you can get access to FREE software via the WebsiteSpark Program. Not the “Free” Express Edition, but the full commercial editions.

image

Options 1, 3, and 4 are self-descriptive, but Option 5 was a task unto itself before they simplified it here.

image

Hopefully visiting this site will make the process of learning new platforms or just finding the right resources a whole lot simpler.

 

Written by wesy

March 14, 2010 at 8:33 pm

New Web Application Toolkits

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What are Web Application Toolkits?

Web Application Toolkits help ASP.NET web developers quickly complete common tasks.  Each Web Application Toolkit download contains reusable assets – e.g. controls, class libraries, endpoints etc. and a sample application that shows how to use them.  Earlier this year we launched 7 Web App Toolkits; IE8 Extensibility, Bing Search, REST Services, Mobile Web Applications, Template-driven Email, Social Web Apps, FAQs.  We received a great response from the community and had plenty of suggestions for new toolkits!  Over the past couple of months we’ve been busy in the lab creating three new Web Application Toolkits and are excited to launch them today!

What’s new?

1. Web Application Toolkits have a new landing page: http://www.microsoft.com/web/downloads/webapptoolkits

2. We are launching three new Web Application Toolkits:

a. Calendars 1.0

b. Bing Maps 1.0

c. Freemium Apps 1.0

Web App Toolkit for Calendars 1.0

Web App Tool Kit for CalendarsLots of Web sites store and display date information that is personal to their users. Users often want one place to manage their calendar for example Outlook, Windows Live Calendar, Google Calendar and so on. Web sites can make their experience more useful by allowing calendar clients to subscribe or import date information in standards-based formats so that information relating to their service is represented in a user’s primary calendar client. In other Web applications it may be necessary for a user to enter date information that is already in another service or calendaring client. By allowing a user to import or subscribe to a 3rd party calendaring information it makes it easier for the user and also increases the reliability of the data entry.

The goal of this Web Application Toolkit is to provide a standards-based service that can be reused in your own Web application to expose calendaring and events information for different users, using different data formats (iCalendar, XML, JSON). This service follows the REST principles and supports different query string parameters for data filtering: dates range, results count, text query, and so on. Additionally, standing from the client-side, you’ll find examples of how to consume the endpoint using the ASP.NET Ajax Library templates and the hCalendar microformat.

This Toolkit uses the standard iCalendar format as one representation for the calendar information. However, for simplicity purposes it does not support the full iCalendar specification (only Events). Also notice that the REST Service included does not provide support for all the CRUD operations that would be desired in production environment scenarios.

[Take me to this Web App Toolkit]

Web App Toolkit for Bing Maps 1.0

Web App Toolkit for Bing MapsA common scenario for Web developers is to provide location based information rendered on an interactive map. For example, showing the location of an office or a store location. The Bing Maps SDKs including the Bing Maps Controls enables developers to incorporate both location and enhanced mapping features into their Web applications.

While creating location-integrated Web applications, developers often want the ability to customize the experience based on Web site branding to make push pins and other map features fit the look and feel of the Web site. This Web Application Toolkit provides reusable assets that tie together location based data from SQL Server 2008 to a Silverlight Web application by using the new rich Silverlight Bing Maps control, combining the power of Silverlight and Bing Maps.

In this Web Application Toolkit you will find a set of reusable custom controls built in Silverlight, which integrated with the Bing Maps Silverlight Control, make a perfect fit for some of the most common location-aware scenarios. With this Toolkit, you will also find a sample Silverlight application showing how to use those controls when implementing a “store locator” scenario on a Web site.

[Take me to this Web App Toolkit]

Web App Toolkit for “Freemium” Applications

When offering services via a web site, a popular way to attract first time users is to offer a free version of the software that has limited functionality. A good way to convert that non-paying customer into a paying customer is to offer more functionality and features beyond what is available in the free version and allow the transition between versions to be seamless. This business model of delivering “basic services for free, while charging a premium for advanced or special features” is known as the Freemium business model.

Often developers create custom branches of their core application to enable this type of functionality but this is not the most cost effective solution as maintaining two code-bases is expensive. The migration between different Stock-Keeping Units (SKUs) of the product might also require work by the customer and this is another barrier to adoption.

This Web Application Toolkit offers a more elegant and cost-effective way to solve this problem by using a SKU/Features matrix to manage which features are available in certain SKUs. The Toolkit makes it easy for the developer to ascertain which SKU the current user has paid for and also which functionality should therefore be available to them by using standard ASP.NET Role Management features together with WCF REST Services to retrieve the SKU/Features information.

The Toolkit also provides reusable ASP.NET MVC views and controllers for developers to create admin experiences for managing the SKU/Feature matrix and page templates to explain to customers about the different SKUs or versions available.

[Take me to this Web App Toolkit]

Written by wesy

February 18, 2010 at 1:20 pm

Posted in .net, Developer, Web

Tagged with ,

The Phone I’ve Been Waiting For…ok and Still Waiting For…

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I’ve worked for Microsoft over 19 years.  I’ve been through 4 cars, 16 various luggable/notebook computers, 9 operating system (not including MS DOS 4-6), well several pocket PCs and a couple of Windows Mobile devices.  I’m a loyal guy. For the past several years, i’ve had to take good-natured ribbing from my friends that have bought iPhones.

I really did have device envy.  There’s no two ways about it. The iPhone is sexy. Great industrial design with Motorola Q9mwell-integrated software to complement it.  Apple essentially built another platform when they realized that the PC “war” was over. During the past 2+ years i’ve struggled with this device. It’s a Motorola Q9m, Running Windows Mobile 6. The best thing about the phone was the Verizon Network.  It’s user interface and web browsing experience pretty much sucked. 

My friends referred to their iPhone as their “J phone”, even though they had less than stellar experiences with AT&T’s service.  Their love or some would say their obsession with their iPhone was almost like a metaphor to describe Golum’s attachment and need for his “precious”.  I called their phones the iPrecious.

Fast forward to the ZuneHD.  This is a very cool device.  Awesome form factor – check; Great software – check; Touch – check, Radio – check; Phone Stack – uh no…The one thing that this device REALLY needed was a phone stack. 

We’ve all heard thatGizmodo - Windows Phone 7 Series patience is a virtue .  It’s really difficult to believe that when you see all the competitors coming out with interesting devices.  I was told…wait…and you will see the light…I’ve waited so long, but feared disappointment. 

Well at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, my dream of dreams was confirmed. The Windows Phone 7 Series was announced. The first reactions have been excellent.

I have not seen one in the flesh, but am really looking forward to getting my hands on one.  I’ve been holding back on upgrading my phone.  Now I have to wait until the holiday season, but at least I can see the prize on the horizon.

Check out the video on the Windows 7 Series 7 Features.

Enjoy!

Written by wesy

February 18, 2010 at 10:43 am

Upcoming Windows Azure Platform Events (US dates)

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 Microsoft is about to embark upon a 6 week, 15 city tour to discuss the Windows Azure Platform. See the table below for more details.  The cloud means a whole of things to different people, but one thing is certain – the cloud implies scale. Here’s a few factoids: 

  • 1 Billion: Windows Live ID authentication each day
  • 3-4 Billion: emails filtered daily from >6 million mail boxes by Foreront
  • 450 Million: Hotmail users
  • 20 Million: Xbox Live users
  • 700,000 Square Feet: Size of one our new data centers

Developer Track:

 

Code, debug, & test in a local cloud sandbox; deploy to Azure’s public cloud

 

IT Pro Track:

 

  

From cloud to virtualization to client

 

  

SESSION 1:

 

Overview of Cloud Computing and Windows Azure Platform

 

We’ll provide a developer-focused overview of this new online service computing platform and how it enables you to leverage existing skills and familiar tools to develop cloud applications.

 

Highlights include:

 

–    What is cloud computing?

–    Running web apps in the cloud

–    Using the Windows Azure local developer cloud fabric

–    Getting started – tools, SDKs and accounts

–    Writing apps for Windows Azure

  

SESSION 2:

Windows Azure Platform Storage Options

 

In this session, we’ll explore durable data storage, and the many options the Windows Azure Platform offers, to be used alone or in combination:

–    Ready-to-use and lightweight storage in the form of tables, blobs, and queues from Windows Azure;

 

–    True relational database in the cloud from SQL Azure.

 

Highlights include:

 

–    Understanding and programming against table, blob storage & queue storage

–    Managing credentials and connection strings

–    Scaling and configuration

–    SQL Azure databases versus local SQL Server databases: when to use when?

–    SQL Azure firewall, logins and passwords, database creation, deployments and migrations

–    Database management using SQL Management Studio

  

SESSION 3:

Going Live with your Azure Solution

 

How cool is this: by focusing on your app and abstracting away the infrastructure details, you can deploy almost any app with minimal fuss! In this session, we’ll walk you through the basics of Windows Azure deployment, including site monitoring, diagnostics and performance issues.

 

Highlights include:

 

–    Start-to-Finish Visual Studio demos of:

A realistic XML data driven business web site from the desktop to the cloud.

 

A realistic SQL Server data driven business web site from the desktop to the cloud.

 

–    Configuration of your application in the cloud

–    Guidance and suggestions to ensure your success

Click to register for the event nearest to you!

 

St. Louis

 

2-Feb

 

Dallas

 

4-Feb

 

Minneapolis

 

9-Feb

 

Chicago

 

10-Feb

 

Southfield, MI

 

11-Feb

 

Phoenix

 

23-Feb

 

Philadelphia

 

23-Feb

 

Los Angeles

 

25-Feb

 

Washington, DC

 

25-Feb

 

San Francisco

 

2-Mar

 

Raleigh

 

3-Mar

 

Seattle

 

4-Mar

 

Denver

 

9-Mar

 

Orlando

 

9-Mar

 

Ft. Lauderdale

 

11-Mar

 

  

SESSION 1:

 

The Next Wave: Windows Azure

 

The future of highly available, high-performance, secure, dynamically scalable, cloud computing is here.  It’s Microsoft’s Windows Azure. 

 

Session highlights include:

 

–    What exactly is “Cloud Computing”?  What apps are best suited for it?

 

–    Microsoft’s commitment to the Cloud:  The virtualization platform and data centers

 

–    How to get started in the cloud: Deploying and managing applications

 

–    Will I save money by doing this?  (Using the Azure TCO tool)

 

  

SESSION 2: 

Hyper-V: Tools to Build the Ultimate Virtual Test Network 

 

In this session, you’ll learn how to use the resources of a TechNet subscription, Windows Server 2008R2, Hyper-V, and a new, free sysinternals tool called Disk2vhd, to build the ultimate test or training environment. 

Highlights include:

 

–    TechNet subscription: What is it? How do I get one? What does it cost?

–    Virtual Hard Disks: format interoperability and disk types

–    Connectivity with legacy network adapters and network adapters

  

SESSION 3:

Windows 7 Deployment

 

Deploying Windows 7 is easy if you’re using the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) 2010.  This session will walk you through the various tools that can help simplify your deployments. 

 

Highlights include:

 

–    Microsoft Deployment Options

–    Review the MDT 2010 Deployment Process

–    Deployment Tools

–    Windows Automated Installation Kit (WAIK )

–    Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010

Click to register for the event nearest to you!

 

St. Louis

 

2-Feb

 

Dallas

 

4-Feb

 

Minneapolis

 

9-Feb

 

Chicago

 

10-Feb

 

Southfield, MI

 

11-Feb

 

Phoenix

 

23-Feb

 

Philadelphia

 

23-Feb

 

Los Angeles

 

25-Feb

 

Washington, DC

 

25-Feb

 

San Francisco

 

2-Mar

 

Raleigh

 

3-Mar

 

Seattle

 

4-Mar

 

Denver

 

9-Mar

 

Orlando

 

9-Mar

 

Ft. Lauderdale

 

11-Mar

 

Written by wesy

February 3, 2010 at 4:11 pm