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Windows Phone - Upcoming Events

There's a few upcoming events that you'll want to register for if you're thinking about Windows Phone Development.

Windows Phone Design Day

Ok, these are by far the most important events you can attend in the next 3 months. Period. Arturo Toledo has all the information about these on his blog. You should make sure you do whatever is necessary to attend one of these events. This is especially if you're a developer!

  • Find one nearby (details)
  • Register now
  • Get the day off
  • Use vacation time
  • Call in sick if necessary

Corrina Black and Arturo will both be at all these events. I cannot stress how important it is to listen and talk with both Corrina and Arturo in person. Also, be sure to take your app with you and get feedback on it.

However, you also need to that as of right now these events are only scheduled for Europe.  For those of you in the US, please start sending feedback to both Corrina and Arturo letting them know you want to see one of these events in a city near you. They need to hear from you personally, and the best way to reach them is through Twitter (@corrinab and @arturot).

Windows Phone Camp

These are the second most important events you should attend in the next 6 months. There are 33 that have been scheduled all across the US. Some are two day events, and most are just a single day. Right now you can go to the MSDN Events site and see a map of where these are all scheduled (red pushpins). The same advice applies:

Windows Phone Camps

  • Find one nearby (map)
  • Register now
  • Get the day off
  • Use vacation time
  • Call in sick if necessary

The Windows Phone Camp for Portland is scheduled for December 1st. I'm already registered. Be sure to say "hi" and let me know if you'll also be there. We'll probably do a nerd dinner / "appy" hour that evening.

If you don't have a Windows Phone Camp scheduled near you, ping your local user group leaders and/or myself and let's talk about organizing one near you. It could be as simple as a half-day event during the weekend. If it's not too far and my schedule permits, I'd be happy to show up and help support it. You should definitely be thinking about hosting your event before the second week in December.

HTML5 Web Camp

Depending on your perspective, this could also be a candidate for the most important event you should attend in the next 3 months. Especially with all the opportunities that will be coming with Windows 8.

You'll want to look at that same map on the MSDN Events site, but this time focus on the blue pushpins. There's not as many of these scheduled right now, but I'm sure you'll see more and more of these being added in the future.

Honestly, this is a great event that your non-Microsoft friends will also be interested in. Especially once they realize they can build apps in HTML5 and deploy them to the Windows 8 app store.

The HTML5 Web Camp for Portland is scheduled for December 8th. I'm already registered  This will be hands-on, so you'll want to bring your laptop. Space is limited, so register now.

tags: Windows Phone | HTML5

Time to Stop Whining About Silverlight vs HTML5

People who know me know that I love Silverlight.  Just ask my wife or my 10 year-old daughter.  Ask any of my previous employers whom I consistently begged to let me use the technology to solve their problems.  I was there at MIX07 when Silverlight was first announced and I changed my life and bet big on this technology.  I started the PDXUX.Net User Group right after MIX07.  In 2009 Erik Mork helped me migrate that group into the Portland Silverlight User Group.  We worked with Microsoft and got a busload of 40+ user group members up to the Silverlight Firestarter event last December.  Like others, I started my own Silverlight consulting company.  I aspired to one day be awarded as a Microsoft MVP in Silverlight (yeah, that never happened).  I now create apps and games for the Windows Phone using Silverlight.  I have absolutely no regrets with how I've integrated Silverlight into my life.  Why should I?  Silverlight will continue to be a big part of my life.

Now, before you read any further you need to go watch this video where Mike Angiulo shows off Windows 8 and talks about what's coming in hardware (majority of the video) and hints at what is available for apps (29:40 in video).

I don't know about you, but after watching that video I am super excited about the opportunities coming in Windows 8.  I mean, seriously, how can you watch that video and not be excited?  Did you watch the video?  GO WATCH THE VIDEO!  Please.  :)

Let's be clear here, I'm aware that Microsoft's favorite new catchphrase is "hardware accelerated HTML".  They aren't mentioning Silverlight very much when it comes to Windows 8.  Meh, whatever.  I'm assuming Microsoft is trying to speak to non-Microsoft devs and get their attention.  Good for them.  That doesn't alienate me as a Silverlight developer.  However, this change in language is starting to pique my interest.  I mean, what if they are actually trying to speak to me?  Are they hinting at something new that I could benefit from?

Now I'm intrigued.  I rode the crest of the wave with Silverlight.  Now that I know there will be a Windows 8 app store, I want to make sure I'm at the forefront of whatever is Windows 8.  If that means learning HTML5 and CSS3, then I'm totally willing to invest that time.  I've already picked up a couple books and am reading those now.  I'm encouraging you to do the same.  Don't whine to me about having too much to learn (e.g. what's new in Mango, as well as XNA).  We're all smart people here and we studied multiple subjects while in college.  If you want to take advantage of all the opportunities in Windows 8 then you'll need to invest the time in HTML5/CSS3/Javascript now.

Also, don't whine to me and say "I did HTML+Javascript 'X' number of years ago and it didn't work then so why should I go back?"  Horse shit.  You haven't done HTML+Javascript with the tools/standards/language support/browser support that we have now, not to mention the tooling that will be announced at BUILD.  That–my friend–is a total game changer.

Honestly, it's time to stop whining and start learning.  You remember all the cynics back when Silverlight was first announced?  You remember how hard it was to get your boss to let you do a project in Silverlight back then?  You remember how it seemed they would say anything to fight this new technology?  Do you realize that is exactly who you have turned into?

Opportunity, my friends, it's all about opportunity.  That's exactly why I am attending BUILD, and exactly why you also need to attend.  If you decide to stay home and remain ignorant then you will be increasing my odds of success (I'll have fewer competitors).  But I'm a community guy and I run user groups and I try to help those around me.  All I'm saying is you need to take a hard and honest look at this and think about what this could mean to your future.  When .NET came on the scene there were plenty of VB6 developers who chose to pass on the opportunity before them and were slower in their adoption.  There's nothing wrong with that.  Just be honest with yourself about realize what this could potentially mean to you.

I know I'm going to be doing Silverlight development for a long time.  It will take a while for Windows 8 to ship, and even after it does ship, Silverlight will still be a large part of how we do application development.  Sure there will be HTML5/Javascript apps, but if you think that Silverlight doesn't play any part in the future of Windows 8, or with the Windows 8 app store, then YOU ARE INSANE.  I don't have any secret information, no one does yet.  However I'm continuing to bet heavily on the future of Silverlight, and I'm learning HTML5/CSS3 to expand my opportunities with whatever is announced at BUILD.

My recommendation for you is to do exactly the same.

tags: Silverlight | HTML5 | BUILD

Scott Stanfield on HTML5

Scott Stanfield, CEO of Vertigo presented two weeks ago at the Portland Silverlight User Group on HTML5. We had a packed room with 80+ attendees for this amazing presentation. Scott has a unique perspective on HTML5, having built his company primarily on Silverlight.

NOTE: We're now recording each PDXSLUG meeting, so if you ever miss one you can check it out

Scott Stanfield on HTML5 from Portland Silverlight User Group.

tags: Silverlight | PDXSLUG | HTML5

HTML5 Crash Course w/ Scott Stanfield on 11/9

Scott Stanfield will be in town for the next Portland Silverlight User Group meeting and will be talking about HTML5.  Confused?  Don't be.  I'm pretty sure Scott hasn't gone over to the dark side completely, but I've got a list of questions that will help me get to the bottom of this.  (j/k)

I'm expecting a great discussion on why and when to choose HTML5 vs some other plugin architecture (e.g. Flash/Silverlight).  This is a meeting you'll be sure you don't want to miss.


WHAT: PDXSLUG - November 2010 Meeting

WHEN: Tuesday, 11/9/2010
6:00 p.m. Pizza (by Vertigo)
6:30 p.m. Presentation
~9:00 p.m. Afterwards at Rock Bottom

WHERE: Webtrends (map)
851 SW 6th Ave.
Portland, OR 97204-1337

WHO: Scott Stanfield
Scott Stanfield is the CEO of Vertigo Software, Inc., a Microsoft Gold Partner specializing in designing and building unique software. Scott is a proud member of the Microsoft Regional Director community and participates in the Microsoft Partner Architect Council. He is a frequent public speaker, keynoting for Microsoft and other industry events. Before starting Vertigo in 1997, Scott worked at Pixar in Point Richmond, California, which happens to be the current home of Vertigo. Scott holds a BS in Computer Science for Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

TOPIC: HTML5 Crash Course
It's been nearly a decade since the last big changes to HTML, which frankly weren't all that interesting. But this time it's different. With all the excitement around the latest features and browsers, it's time to take a closer look, especially if you've been heads-down on Silverlight, like I have been. If you haven't had time to look into the HTML5 family of technologies, it's time to start.

Warmup - Connecting to the Cloud With Windows Phone 7
At the beginning of the meeting (6pm) Gerald Aden will present his strategies for connecting to the cloud with Windows Phone 7.

Sponsors: While you are at it, consider visiting our premium sponsors that make these meetings possible:

tags: WP7 | Silverlight | PDXSLUG | HTML5