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  • Blog Post: It’s not the device, nor the UI. It’s the experience that differentiates.

    We’ve all heard the term “ Consumerization of IT ” (or “ Bring Your Own Device ”). Most of us have seen the disruptive power this concept has within the enterprise, both for good and for bad. But how do you take advantage of this concept with your apps? How do you make sure...
  • Blog Post: You need to control yourself when adding controls to mobile UIs

    By now, most people have realized (in theory) that recreating a PC-based app (or web app) is not exactly the right idea for mobile apps.  In practice, however, it is clear that this is not as easy as it sounds .  When you’re building an app that has no history on the PC or web, building the...
  • Blog Post: Designing for Success (through User Experience)

    Last week, I was at Prairie Dev Con and had the pleasure of sitting in on David Alpert ’s sessions on user experience called Design for Success . I found it fascinating that such an important part of an application never really gets the attention that it deserves, and most times, overlooked entirely...
  • Blog Post: THIS is How You Do It: The USGA Golf Score App for Windows Phone 7

    One of the tricky things about helping developers build for a platform that has yet to be released is that it’s a tabula rasa . There’s no history, which is both blessing and curse: we developers get to make that history, but at the same time, we’re working in the dark. There are no examples to emulate...
  • Blog Post: A Touchy Subject

    I think that we – and by we, I mean we developers and developer evangelist types at Microsoft – get touch and tablets, or slates, or pads, or whatever you’d like to call them, better than the Ars Technica article Ballmer (and Microsoft) still doesn't get the iPad (written by Peter Bright and posted in...
  • Blog Post: Ten Things You Need to Know About Design

    What you see above is a slide from Jason Putorti’s slide deck titled 10 Things CEOs Need to Know About Design . Don’t let the title throw you off: everything in the presentation is even more important for developers because we actually make the things our customers use. If you decide to commit only one...
  • Blog Post: A11yCamp: June 8 at the University of Guelph

    Just as i18n is shorthand for “internationalization” – it’s made by taking the first and last letters of the word and replacing the 18 letters in between with the number 18 – a11y is shorthand for “accessibility”. That’s why the accessibility unconference...
  • Blog Post: Scott “UnMarketing” Stratten: “First Name and Email are Enough” and Other Thoughts on Online Interaction

    Last night at a gathering of Toronto digital marketing and social media types held by TheBizMedia – I’m not sure I qualified for an invite, but hey, free beer! – Scott Stratten , president of UnMarketing , gave a very entertaining, funny and insightful presentation in which he talked about the lessons...
  • Blog Post: Kathy Sierra: “Make a Better FM”

    Photo found via kloctalk . Sound advice from Kathy Sierra (pictured giving one of those mind-blowing presentations that are her stock in trade). Her blog, Creating Passionate Users , while dormant, is still worth reading. [ This article also appears in Global Nerdy . ]
  • Blog Post: MIX10 Thoughts: Design, Windows Phone and Bill Buxton

    Me and Bill Buxton at the MIX10 Attendee Party last Tuesday night. There’s one reason I’m particularly excited about Windows Phone 7 Series. The radically reworked look and feel is the surest sign that the company is really beginning to understand design and is willing to start from scratch (a risky...
  • Blog Post: Heralding in the Immersive Online Olympic Experience in Canada

    Today represents a very important day for our country – the start of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. Over the next 2 weeks, we are going to be witness to some incredible athleticism and stories with the world united through sport. I can remember vividly watching previous Olympic Games in front of...
  • Blog Post: Qixing’s Big Move

    Good Luck, Qixing! We may be losing a User Experience Evangelist, but I think we’ll get a great Windows 8 in return. Qixing Zheng, who’s been with Microsoft Canada’s Developer and Platform Evangelism team for the past three years, is leaving to join the Windows UX Team as a Program Manager. While I saw...
  • Blog Post: It’s About Helping Your Users Become Awesome (or: “Being Better is Better” by Kathy Sierra)

    Kathy Sierra , who co-created O’Reilly’s “Head First” series of books and who used to write the very inspirational Creative Passionate Users blog, is awesome at helping users become awesome. I use her lessons as guidelines in my evangelism work and even borrowed from her to create a catchphrase that...
  • Blog Post: New Design for MSDN Newsletter

    Yesterday we sent out our newly designed MSDN Developer Newsletter. Many of you have already sent your feedback on the new design. Thank you! As you probably noticed, the newsletter is in Beta format now, so we’ll review all your feedback and continue improving the newsletter design and content. This...
  • Blog Post: Line of Business Silverlight Apps that Rock

    Silverlight , Microsoft’s plug-in for delivering cross-platform Rich Internet Applications (RIA) and experiences has been out for a while now.  The first, JavaScript-only version was released at Microsoft’s MIX07 conference in May of 2007.  Subsequently, Silverlight 2 (the first .NET-enabled...
  • Blog Post: Guest Post: MIX09 Inspirations: Back to the Drawing Board

    From now through the end of the MIX09 conference in Las Vegas, Rob Burke will be providing his insights from the conference on a daily basis. Robert Burke is a Toronto-based IT Consultant who’s attending his fourth MIX event this year.  By day he’s knee-deep in Microsoft User Experience technologies...
  • Blog Post: A Developer's View on a Design Conference

    Last weekend during Interaction'09 conference , I noticed there were quite a few developers in the heavily concentrated interaction designers conference. I was curious to find out what were their experience at the conference and why they chose this conference. Is it like a designer attending a developer...
  • Blog Post: The Device/Desktop Opportunity

    Why isn’t Brookstone in Canada yet? For those of you who aren’t familiar with Brookstone, a good way to describe it is “lifestyle gadget store”. A good portion of their catalog is devoted to “lifestyle electronics”: things like alarm clocks for travel that also play soothing noises to help you sleep...
  • Blog Post: Bringing UX to Developers - .NET Users Group Presentation

    I had the opportunity to present at the Metro Toronto .NET User Group last Wednesday. Even it was the first snow of the winter in GTA, but there were still more than 40 people showed up to listen to my talk on "Building for People: 5 Practical Tips for Creating Great User Experience." I was very excited...
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