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WP7 Mango Beta 2 - Get it now

This is the update you've been waiting for...

  1. Read Brandon Watson's blog post - all of it
  2. Download the Windows Phone Developer Tools Beta 2

You'll notice that with this update you now have the chance to update your retail phone to Mango. I'm in the process of doing this myself. Listed below are the high-level steps you'll need to follow (as suggested by Brandon Watson).

  • Read the instructions before updating, there are important steps you need to follow to the letter.
  • Update your retail phone to Mango.
  • Rub it in your friends' faces that you have Mango and they don't.
  • Build Mango apps.

So go get the bits, get registered for AppHub if you haven't already, get Mango on your phone, and then have a blast building new and exciting apps for Mango.

tags: WP7 | Windows Phone | mango

Portland Code Camp 2011 - Recap

Earlier this month I participated in the Portland Code Camp.  Talk about an awesome event, over 500 attendees showed up and participated on what turned out to be the first non-rainy Saturday in months.  While many of them could have instead been partying at the beach they instead choose to focus on their professional lives in both teaching and learning from others.  Each year I am completely amazed by the dedication of the technical and professional communities here in Portland, Oregon.

Originally I was scheduled for just 2 sessions, but I did finally end up speaking in 3.  I wound up filling in at the last minute for a speaker who became sick.

In the first session I had about 30 people and we talked about the importance of UX in your mobile applications.  None of the crowd had really seen Windows Phone 7, so I spent a lot of time talking about it and what is new in Mango.  I then talked about some of the UX paradigms and how those can be translated over to over platforms (e.g. Live Tiles -> Widgets in Android).  We spent a while talking about the importance of push notifications and why you need them.  While I had a slant of what works in Windows Phone 7, really the discussion was about the general UX paradigms and how you can build a more engaging mobile experience regardless of what platform you choose.

My second session was on Making Money with Windows Phone 7.  That session was recorded and the slide decks are also available for you to download (see my other post).

My last session of the day was sitting in on a panel with Walt Ritscher, Bill Moore, and Joe McBride.  We had a blast talking about how UI/UX is changing because of mobile, kinect, and html5.  It was a very well rounded crowd, with most people coming from a background of using a non-Microsoft web stack.

Final Thoughts

One observation I took away from code camp is that really we're all in this together regardless of what our technological background is, and what unites and excites all of us is creating these engaging and immersive user experiences.  At the end of the day it's all about UX, as that's the language that each of us speaks and understands.  With this perspective it really makes the "silverlight vs html5 / silverlight is dead" discussions seem like trivial, petty, and entirely useless conversations.  The technology isn't what matters, it's the human element or what we commonly refer to as the User Experience (UX).

tags: WP7 | Silverlight | wp7dev | Portland Code Camp | mango

Portland Code Camp 2011

The Portland Code Camp for 2011 is tomorrow (6/4).  I'm assuming that most of you knew about it already and had already pre-registered.  If not then don't fret, you can still show up tomorrow morning and they'll take care of you at the door.

This is a code camp that you want to make sure you don't miss.  Lots of sessions on HTML5, Android, Windows Phone, WCF, and Azure.  Scott Hanselman will be giving the keynote during lunch on Lego, Open Source and Sucking Less: An Overview of the MS Web Stack of Love.

I'll be presenting two sessions:


Making Money with Windows Phone 7

Striking it rich in a mobile marketplace is a very intriguing and yet intimidating idea. Here's some of the questions I faced when first getting started:

  • How many hours does it really take?
  • Do I have to have a device?
  • What if I don't think I have a good idea?
  • Is a designer really necessary?
  • How can I compete against an Xbox Live title?

In this session I break down my experience with Alchemy, a relatively successful Silverlight game. I talk about the approach I took which has allowed the majority of my revenue to come from sales and not advertisements. I'll be sharing hard numbers and analytics, and tips that I believe are best practices for building an engaging and compelling app.


Windows Phone "Mango"

Windows Phone 7 turned a lot of heads last year when it entered the mobile ecosystem. Last week the new features for Mango were announced and now the platform stands on its own as a serious competitor and a great strategic play. In this 2.5 hour “hands-on” session we’ll be diving into the newly released beta tools for Mango and building apps that showcase how to take advantage of these new features. If you’ve been waiting to jump on the Windows Phone bandwagon and are now thinking about testing the waters, this is the session for you to get your questions answered.

tags: WP7 | wp7dev | Portland Code Camp | mango