Contents tagged with Silverlight

  • I’m a Windows Phone 7 Game Publisher!

    Windows Phone 7 isn’t widely available yet, but you can already buy quite a few apps for it. I’m proud to say that my little game, Classic Hits, has just been published in the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace.

    Although I don’t even own a Windows Phone (fellow MVP Todd McDermid tested Classic Hits on his real device), I was able to use the emulator to browse the app area.  I took the following screenshot of my game in the Marketplace.

    04-11-2010 7-45-15 PM

    I’m curious as to whether anyone will buy my simple game given that there’s nothing to shoot down or explode. The development effort was certainly not in the coding (I could easily make it open source) but in assembling the data and trivia for over 2,200 songs.

    There’s lots that I don’t understand about the Windows Phone marketplace. For example, four XBOX Live games are listed as ‘Related’ to Classic Hits. In what way are WP7 and XBOX Live related? In what way is Tetris related to a trivia game? Does someone think my app is cross-platform?

    Microsoft needs to throw resources at Subscription Management for WP7 in its App Hub. I’m not talking about certification and publishing because my app was approved and put online within a couple of days of submission. I was kept informed of the progress for each step.

    Rather, it seems like the Developer and Marketing people have done *too* good a job attracting developers like me to the platform. Microsoft’s accounting infrastructure is struggling to cope with the sudden influx of subscriptions and queries.  Early adopters are venting their frustration about being unable to phone a human being who can sort out registration, payment, and refund issues. It’s as if WP7 has piggy-backed much of its management on Xbox Live without Xbox being ready.


  • Visual Studio Lightswitch - Welcome Advanced Amateurs

    There are a lot of people in business who are wizards with tools like Excel, even though their primary job isn’t software development. Sometimes their apps become essential to the business process.

    Lightswitch, announced at VSLive!, will appeal to advanced amateurs. The nice thing is that professional developers can take the code and scale it out without starting from scratch.

    This technology reminds me a lot of the old Visual InterDev product. I was a technical writer at the time and used it to build lots of intranet sites for colleagues. Lightswitch is far more powerful and uses .NET and Silverlight. You’ll also be able to publish your app to the cloud.

    The beta is coming on August 23rd.


  • MIX10 Big Announcements Speculation

    What’s your speculation on the big announcements to come from MIX10? A date for VS 2010 availability on MSDN? A release candidate for Silverlight 4 on the desktop? An SDK for Silverlight on Windows Mobile 7? A CTP of Internet Explorer 9? Something (anything!) new on Windows Live ID development? More JQuery in ASP.NET?


  • Predictions for MIX 09 Announcements

    Everybody is heading to MIX 09 except me! Poor me. I'm working on a nice ASP.NET 3.5 contract.

    Microsoft always saves/targets release announcements for big events. As a Microsoft-owned conference MIX warrants major releases.

    Here are my predictions on what products Microsoft will unveil:

    Internet Explorer 8 release
    ASP.NET MVC 1.0 release
    Visual Studio 2010 ctp or beta
    ASP.NET 4.0 beta
    Silverlight 3 ctp

    I certainly hope we see some decent tooling support for the Silverlight GUI in VS 2010.

    What else? Maybe some new community controls for existing products and betas for the Expression suite? What have I missed? What leftovers will DevConnections get on March 22nd?




  • Silverlight 2 Update - Get the Developer Version

    The latest Silverlight 2 update (Silverlight 2 GDR 1 (2.0.40115.0)) failed to install on my machine because it detected that I already had the developer version.

    The error message and redirect to the correct file are well engineered, but developers can save some time by going straight to this page:



  • Source Code for Creating a Silverlight 2 Data Form Released

    I've release the source code from my screencast series on Creating a Silverlight 2 Data Form at the MSDN Code Gallery. On the Downloads tab, you'll find several files for VB and C# projects. The basic source code is the same, but the large downloads include the Northwind database and (even larger) binaries that would be a pain for people who have restricted-bandwidth.

    The C# translation is courtesy of José Luis Quintero Méndez (

    As a reminder, you can find a list of the screencast episodes here:!5BA3283F955D0A0F!118/

    My personal need to explore Silverlight data handling certainly has resonated with a large audience. Silverlight Streaming reports over 25 thousand hits as I write this! While gratified by the number of hits, the level of feedback is surprisingly low. Don't forget that there's a dedicated discussion newsgroup at .

    Thanks very much to SilverlightShow for featuring my series and to Silverlight Cream for keeping the community up-to-date. For some reason, Silverlight.NET hasn't given my work a mention, but my friend Beth Massi kindly featured it on MSDN's VB site.

    BTW, Episode 9 will be much delayed (no ETA) as I wait for bug reports and throw myself into a new ASP.NET contract starting Monday. The project as it stands does what I set out to accomplish, but there's always more to do.

    What I find totally remarkable is that creating the series cost me absolutely nothing - except for my time.  I used a complimentary copy of TechSmith's fabulous Camtasia Studio software to develop the tutorials. Microsoft's Visual Web Developer 2008 Express is free, as is Silverlight Streaming.


    Microsoft MVP [ASP.NET]


  • Silverlight 2 Data Form - Episode 8: Client Storage

    In Episode 8, we continue working with the AutoCompleteBox control that we implemented in Episode 7. This time, we fetch a long list of country names as XML from a third-party Web service, cache the file on the client using isolated storage, and harness LINQ to XML to retrieve the country names. One of the considerations is checking Silverlight's access to the remote data. Finally, you learn how to use (and re-use) a static resource within XAML markup.

    I'm currently collecting topics for a ninth episode. My intention is to make it a bug fix screencast based on feedback, so send in those reports! It will likely also cover usability issues like implementing tabs and tooltips.


  • A Better Way to do Silverlight Databinding

    The guys at Intersoft Solutions are ahead of the curve again with their Intersoft Data Source control for Silverlight. The CTP includes the AstoriaDataSource that connects cleanly to an ADO.NET Data service.

    Rather than jumping through hoop after hoop to do asychronous calls and returned results, the control lets you do CRUD operations in only a few lines of code:

      AstoriaDataSource1.Delete("Customers", CustomerGrid.SelectedItem);

    I haven't figured out how to do cascading deletes yet with this control, such as deleting a customer from the Northwind database. (I cover the old manual way in Episode 5: 'D' is for Delete of my Silverlight 2 Data Form series.)

    With the Intersoft control, you use declarative binding by configuring the control in the markup, much the way you do with ASP.NET data controls:

                x:Name="AstoriaDataSource1" Grid.Row="2"
       ServiceHost="http://localhost:53948" ServiceTarget="NorthwindDataService.svc"
                ReferenceNamespace="NorthwindDataReference" ServiceTypeName="NorthwindEntities"            
                        DataObjectTypeName="Customers" ServiceName="Customers"/>
                        DataObjectTypeName="Products" ServiceName="Products"/>
                        DataObjectTypeName="Employees" ServiceName="Employees"/>