This is amazing news! With the recent announcement of the beta of the new app development tool, the Windows Phone App Studio that can help you create your app without coding, we are now offering every developer the possibility to unlock and register 1 phone to side-load up to 2 apps. Registered developers with Dev Center accounts continue to have the option to unlock up to 3 phones and upload up to 10 apps on each.
This means that it is now possible to develop and deploy your own software for testing on real phone hardware without paying for a Windows Phone Dev Center account.
Want to develop your apps using the full development tools or edit the projects you have generated online with the Windows Phone App Studio? No problem! The full developer tools are free for download, just grab the “Windows Phone 8.0 SDK” from http://dev.windowsphone.com/en-us/downloadsdk
Only if you want to publish your app to the store however, you will need the full account. But thanks to the $19 “Summer Break” limited-time Dev Center registration offer (through August 26, 2013). With this offer, the annual Dev Center registration is just $19 (or equivalent local currency). See official terms for more details.
During a recent holiday I had the idea of creating a working QR code from Lego bricks. This is how it turned out:
The Making of:
The next step was to port the black blocks to a grid – I used Excel for the task.
Next, I split the black areas into the largest possible Lego bricks available. The result looks as follows with the various colors representing different kinds of Lego bricks.
With the resulting number of required bricks, I headed over to Lego’s Pick a Brick and ordered the required amount of the flattest possible bricks called “plates”.
After a week I had all the parts I needed.
Putting everything together in the next pictures.
The last step was getting a fitting picture frame from Ikea.
And yes, I am missing one “pixel” which I will add as soon as I get my hands on another black 1*1 plate… :) The QR code still works thanks to error correction.
Windows 8.1 has been announced last week at the //build/ conference in San Francisco.
Now is the perfect time to get yourself up to speed on what is new in Windows 8.1 for developers, try the new Visual Studio 2013 preview and install the preview build of Windows 8.1.
The following, small collection of links hopefully helps you in getting your bearings in the matter.
Build 2013 Session Recordings
Windows 8.1 app samples
Download Visual Studio 2013 Preview for Windows
Get the standalone Windows 8.1 SDK
Download the Windows 8.1 samples pack
Windows App Certification Kit 3.0
Remote Tools for Visual Studio 2013 Preview
Multilingual App Toolkit
Windows 8.1 New APIs and features
Windows 8.1 Preview Product Guide for Developers
Windows 8.1 Preview Product Guide (PDF Download)
Migration guide for app builders
Internet Explorer 11 Preview Guide for Developers
The second part of the series on “Testing Your Windows Phone 8 Apps” has now been published on the Windows Phone Developer Blog. Testing your apps before releasing them to the store can make a huge difference. A small investment in the key areas described in this post can give your app better results in your market and help bypass common coding errors early in the development process.
Testing your Windows Phone app – Part 1 – Released May 1, 2013
- Beta testing
- Installation and launch
- Fast Application Switching (FAS) and tombstoning
- App navigation
- Launchers and choosers
- UI and layout
Testing your Windows Phone app – Part 2 – Released May 22, 2013
- Push notification
- Live Tiles
- Media, audio, and video
- Resource usage and performance
WebMatrix is a free, lightweight web development tool we first introduced in 2010, and which provides a great, focused web development experience for ASP.NET, PHP, and Node.js.
Today’s release includes a ton of great new features. You can easily get started by downloading it, and watching an introduction video:
Get more in-depth information on http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2013/05/01/announcing-the-release-of-webmatrix-3.aspx
Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 (VS2012.2) has been released and is now available for download.
Just as with VS2012.1 (which is installed as part of VS2012.2 for those of you who don’t already have VS2012.1 installed), this release contains important fixes as well as a wealth of new functionality, addressing feedback we’ve received from the community and aligning with key software development trends in the market. The new functionality primarily spans (though is not limited to) five areas of investment: agile planning, quality enablement, Windows Store development, line-of-business development, and the general developer experience.
Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 offers enhancements in the following areas.
Agile planning. Visual Studio 2012 introduced a wide range of capabilities focused on enabling agile teams, not only for development but also for planning. With VS2012.2, Team Foundation Server (TFS) has been augmented with an additional variety of features to help make it even easier for agile teams to do their planning, in particular around adapting to a team’s preferences and work styles.
Quality Enablement. This update introduces web-based access to the Test Case Management tools in TFS such that users can now author, edit, and execute test cases through the web portal. It also includes the ability to profile unit tests (with results across both the unit tests and the code under test surfaced through a single report), improved unit testing support for both asynchronous code and for interactions with the UI, unit testing support for Windows Phone 8 apps, unit test playlists that enable a subset of tests to be managed together, significant improvements around testing for SharePoint 2013 (web and load testing, unit testing with emulators, coded UI support, and IntelliTrace support), and more.
Development experience. As developers spend so much of their time using the IDE, it’s important that Visual Studio provide as streamlined an experience as possible. Towards that end, we continually invest in new features and productivity enhancements to make the IDE the best and most productive environment possible, a trend we continue with VS2012.2. Code map has been updated with improved responsiveness as well as with debugger integration, providing a visual perspective on the relationships and dependencies in code being debugged. Symbol loading has been improved across both the profiling and IntelliTrace experiences. The Workflow designer now has an improved debugging experience. The XAML design surface in both Blend and the Visual Studio editor includes multiple performance and reliability improvements, in particular when loading large projects and when using third-party controls. The IDE’s light and dark themes are now joined by a third, blue theme. And more, such as including all of the improvements made available through ASP.NET and Web Tools 2012.2.
A more expansive list of what’s new in VS2012.2, including new features and bug fixes, is also available.
Download page: http://www.microsoft.com/web/webmatrix/next/
Key features include:
Your Companion for the Cloud
When you create local projects, you’ll be able to instantly get a companion website in Windows Azure without ever leaving WebMatrix. Using the Publish button, you can easily keep these sites in sync and save your changes to the cloud.
Remote Site Editing
Simply open your remote sites, make changes, and hit Save. The lightweight performance and full editing capability (including intellisense) make it feels like you are editing a local site!
Source Control with TFS
Team Foundation Service is Microsoft’s hot new source control service in the cloud. WebMatrix 3 makes it simple and fun to work with your code using TFS for any project in the cloud, or on site.
Source Control with Git
Plug into GitHub, CodePlex, and Team Foundation Service to start sharing your code with the world. Whether you’re a newcomer to git, or a seasoned pro, you’ll find all of the features you would expect in a powerful but easy to use tool.