Brian Hitney

developing on the microsoft stack

Posts
  • Brian Hitney

    Short Post: #AmusingCode

    This put a smile on my face today: void App_UnhandledException( object sender, UnhandledExceptionEventArgs e) { throw new NotImplementedException(); }
  • Brian Hitney

    Side Loading Windows 8 Apps

    At the Columbia Windows 8 DevCamp this weekend, the topic of side-loading apps came up in a few different scenarios, but it was particularly appropriate during the app showcase.  We had a number of developers working in the lab room, all competing to come up with the coolest app at the end of the day.  During the showcase where developers pitch their apps to the audience, it works best to have all the apps on the same machine.  Here’s the best way to do it without having to copy source code/solution...
  • Brian Hitney

    Dark Skies for Windows 8 Updated

    I’m happy to finally have the next update to Dark Skies in the Windows 8 store !  In the initial release, I used Bing Maps to display light pollution data.  In this version, I allow users to display and share favorite viewing spots, and spruced up the live tile with some cool info. The main page can display information about a pin on the map: Admittedly, there aren’t too many pins just yet, but it will grow over time.   It’s not just favorite viewing locations – astronomy shops, user groups...
  • Brian Hitney

    Microsoft DevRadio: How to Integrate TFS Projects with Windows Azure Web Sites

    Never too late to post!  Here’s an episode of DevRadio Peter and I did on TFS Projects in Azure!   Abstract: Peter Laudati and Brian Hitney are back for today’s show as they show us how we can integrate TFS (Team Foundation Server) projects with Windows Azure Web Sites. They also discuss Windows Azure’s latest price reduction for Storage as well as tee up new features in Windows Azure Mobile Services. After watching this video, follow these next steps:   Step #1 – Try Windows Azure: No cost. No...
  • Brian Hitney

    Dealing with Expired Channels in Windows Azure Mobile Services

    What’s this?  Another Windows Azure Mobile Services (WAMS) post?!  In the next version of my app, I keep a record of the user’s Channel in order to send down notifications.  The built in todo list example does this or something very similar.  My table in WAMS looks like: Not shown are a couple of fields, but of particular interest is the device Id.  I realized that one user might have multiple devices, so the channel then is tied to the device Id.  I still haven’t found a perfect...
  • Brian Hitney

    Upcoming Events

    Lots of great events coming up in the Carolinas: 1/18/2013  Charlotte, NC:  We’re hosting a Windows 8 “Office Hours” at the Microsoft Office.  More info here .  Essentially, if you’re looking for time to hack on a Windows 8 solution, work on ideas, test some stuff out, enlist some testers – we’re there for you.  1/19/2013  Columbia, SC:  Windows 8 DevCamp .   This event is really shaping up to be great!   Interesting sessions, and hands-on time in the labs...
  • Brian Hitney

    Scrubbing UserId in Windows Azure Mobile Services

    First, many thanks to Chris Risner for the assistance on this solution!   Chris is part of the corp DPE team and has does an extensive amount of work with Windows Azure Mobile Services (WAMS) – including this session at //build , which was a great resource for getting started. If you go through the demo of getting started with WAMS building a TodoList , the idea is that the data in the todo list is locked down to each user.   One of the nice things about WAMS is that it’s easy to enforce...
  • Brian Hitney

    Calling Stored Procedures from Windows Azure Mobile Services

    I was surprised, yet delighted, that Windows Azure Mobile Services uses a SQL database.   Schema-less table storage has its place and is the right solution at times, but for most data driven applications, I’d argue otherwise. In my last post , I wrote about sending notifications by writing the payload explicitly from a Windows Azure Mobile Service.   In short, this allows us to include multiple tiles in the payload, accommodating users of both wide and square tiles.   In my application...
  • Brian Hitney

    Best Practice for Sending Windows 8 Tiles from Mobile Services

    Those that know me know I am not a fan of javascript, in pretty much all of its forms (including node.js), however, I’m really digging Windows Azure Mobile Services (WAMS).  WAMS allows you to easily provide a back end to applications for storing data, authenticating users, and supporting notifications on not just Windows and Windows Phone, but also iOS with future plans of supporting Android soon. Now, I mention javascript because WAMS provides a slick node-like powered data service that makes it really...
  • Brian Hitney

    Rock, Paper, Azure Re-launch!

    I’m a little late getting this out (pesky vacations and all) but we re-launched Rock, Paper, Azure (RPA) a few weeks back with weekly competitions! What is Rock, Paper, Azure?  In short, it’s a game, primarily for developers.  It’s also a fun way to learn programming, as the concept is simple however winning is not.  You write code that plays a modified Rock, Paper, Scissors like game and tries to beat everyone else doing the same.   The code that you download has everything ready to...
  • Brian Hitney

    Windows 8 Pop Up (and Under), Setting up Family PC Settings

    The worst best part about being the Microsoft guru when a new OS ships is configuring PCs for family members.   In Windows 8, it’s a big relief that the new start screen makes things inherently more secure and less worrisome, but in desktop mode and since I have family members who haven’t upgraded yet, I get asked about pop ups and pop “under” windows all the time, and configuring family safety settings.  The challenge is striking a balance between stopping annoying popups while allowing desirable...
  • Brian Hitney

    Azure this Week!

    Lots of things going on in Windows Azure this week!  First up, I’ll be presenting at the TRINUG on Windows Azure on Wednesday, Nov. 14th 2012 .   If you’re in the area, stop by! This Wednesday, the corp team is also holding a Windows Azure conference appropriately named Windows Azure Conf ,  be sure to check it out.    The event will be streamed online via Channel 9 and include a keynote from ScuttGu: On November 14, 2012, Microsoft will be hosting Windows AzureConf, a free...
  • Brian Hitney

    A Windows 8 Feature You Won’t See or Talk About, but Everyone Loves

    I’m going to talk about one of my favorite Windows 8 features – it’s one that everyone will love, but no one really knows much about.  In fact, it’s one that is so good, you’d think it’s a problem.  (Like, if you hit the power button and your machine _instantly_ slept, you’d think there is a problem, wouldn’t you?) I’ve got 2 disclaimers.  Obviously I work for MSFT so I’m biased, but the second one is, to Joe’s disgust, I actually have an iPad in house.  The excuse is that I have a large...
  • Brian Hitney

    Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 2) Windows Azure Web Sites Explained

    Peter Laudati , Brian Hitney and Windows Azure Technical Evangelist Brady Gaster conclude their Windows Azure Web Sites intro series by going over the differences between Azure and shared hosting, pricing, scaling, cpu consumption, the reserved vs. shared model, custom DNS, and much, much more. Watch Part 1 After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps...
  • Brian Hitney

    Microsoft DevRadio: (Part 1) What is Windows Azure Web Sites?

    Peter Laudati and Brian Hitney welcome Windows Azure Technical Evangelist Brady Gaster to the show as they discuss Windows Azure Web Sites . In part one of this series, tune in as they chat about what it is, what its key benefits are for web developers and agencies, how the Azure Web Sites infrastructure works for easier site deployment, an intro to the web sites gallery, as well as a special announcement for .NET applications. After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90...
  • Brian Hitney

    Microsoft DevRadio: How to Get Started with Windows Azure

    Peter Laudati and I kick off our new Windows Azure series by giving us a tour of what’s new in Azure with Windows Azure Web sites, Virtual Machines and Mobile Services. Tune in as we provide a brief overview of Azure’s many services and features as well as how to get started with a free 90 day trial . After watching this video, follow these next steps: Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download the Tools for Windows 8 App Development Step #3 – Start building your own Apps for...
  • Brian Hitney

    Windows 8 DevCamp Charlotte 10/12!

    Don’t forget – we have our weekly Windows 8 DevCamp in Charlotte tomorrow, 10/12! In this week's DevCamp, we'll dive into Sharing, Settings, and Roaming. We will also cover some tips and tricks for developing Windows 8 applications using HTML, JavaScript, and CSS. Finally, we'll also spend a few hours going hands on to ensure the best experience for your app! For more information and to register, visit http://developersguild.org/ .
  • Brian Hitney

    Windows 8 Event Resources

    Here are some resources for the Windows 8 Events we’re doing today in Raleigh: Slides and Cookbook App:  https://bthtemp.blob.core.windows.net/misc/Win8-devcamp.zip Contoso Labs: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=34619
  • Brian Hitney

    Coding for Kids #3. Bugs!

    In the first post , we introduced the problem.  We’re writing a program that solves the problem of finding 100 point words, where each letter in the word corresponds to its position in the alphabet (A=1, B=2, Z=26).  In the second post , we coded the basic solution that allows the user to enter a word, and we calculate the result. We have a bug, though, because we made the assumption that the letters passed in are lower case.  The word “automated” is a 100 point word, but “Automated” is displaying...
  • Brian Hitney

    Coding for Kids #2. Code!

    In my last post , I introduced the problem we’re trying to solve via an introductory computer program:  finding 100 point words where each letter of the alphabet corresponds to its place in the alphabet (A=1, B=2 … Z=26).  At this point, we’ve built the basic template for the app, but haven’t yet written any code.   It’s time to write some basic functions (or methods) that help solve this.  For coding veterans, remember – this initially is about solving the problem as a beginner and...
  • Brian Hitney

    Windows 8 DevCamp: Raleigh

    Microsoft RD Jim Duffy and I are hosting a series of events, kicking off with a Windows 8 DevCamp in Raleigh on Sept 25th!  I’m the brains, Jim is the talent, so don’t miss it.  Sign up here!  (Just kidding about Jim being the talent ) http://takenotewin8.eventbrite.com/ The DevCamp is designed to not only introduce you to developing on the platform, but also take active steps through the design, development, and submission phases to get your app into the marketplace.  Here’s the rundown...
  • Brian Hitney

    Coding for Kids #1. The Beginning.

    My daughter, a 5th grader, has shown an occasional interest in programming but having so many frameworks and platforms available today is both a blessing and a curse.  I began to learn programming by hacking Maxit, Hunt the Wumpus, Adventure, and others.   There were no graphics, no internet, no multiplayer. I saw her doing working on something when it occurred to me this would be a fun afternoon project to solve via code.  She was looking for “dollar words” – words that added up to 100 points...
  • Brian Hitney

    Windows 8: Cannot Connect to Printer

    I have a Canon MP830 USB printer hooked up to my always on workstation at home, and this is shared so that anyone in the house can use it to print. I haven’t had any issues until trying to add the printer in Windows 8. When I tried to add the network printer: It looks like the printer is being added ok, but then I would be given the dreaded 0x00000002 error: This is a driver issue. But what I couldn’t quite understand is why. The drivers were all 64 bit, it’s USB … and I’ve...
  • Brian Hitney

    VS2012 Launch Event Materials

    [Post to be edited soon] This post contains all of the information needed for the Visual Studio 2012 and Windows Azure launch events. Download for the Azure Track Hands on Labs: http://bit.ly/vs2012azurelabs Windows Azure Free 90 Day Trial: http://bit.ly/WAFreeTrial
  • Brian Hitney

    Charlotte Windows 8 DevCamp 9/8/12

    This coming Saturday, 9/8/12, we’re putting together a 1 day Windows 8 DevCamp! Check out the details here: http://developersguild.org What we decided to do is put the best content from ou Technorati Tags: windows 8 , development , charlotte , microsoft r other Win8 DevCamps (typically 2 day), and create an essential, what-you-need-to-know day of content to help you get an app up and running quickly. In addition, we decided to build the entire content around the Contoso Cookbook sample app, allowing...
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