Great Windows 8 Apps != Complex Code

Great Windows 8 Apps != Complex Code

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Windows 8 Start ScreenWhen you use the power of the WinRT you can build some pretty amazing apps without requiring complex code. Leverage the code that’s already there to get a great app in the store early!

When you are deploying an app to the store it’s better to have Timer than Timer698. Getting in the store early can make a difference. In Canada, the app excellence labs give you the earliest chance to publish to the store. But with the labs coming up in June, you may think you can’t build a decent app in time. Fair enough, some of you may have some amazing ideas that will take some time to develop. But there is so much you can do with a simple idea when you add the capabilities of WinRT.

My kids have been playing computer games since they were 12 months old. As a parent I was always on the lookout for fun or educational computer games. One of the most common games was the match game. You have 4, 16, or 25 cards flipped upside down, you have to flip the cards over and find the matching pairs. This would be easy enough to build on Windows 8, but how do we take a simple app and bring that to the next level without a lot of work?  leverage WinRT!

  • How about using the File Pickers to let the player pick their own photos to use for the cards. Find the matching pictures of daddy, or your pet dog Kibbles.
  • How about letting players take new pictures with the webcam using Media.Capture? My kids would have happily sat on an airplane sticking out their tongue and making silly faces at a webcam, holding up their favourite stuffed animals, and plastic dinosaurs, to customize the cards in a match game.

Media.capture was the first WinRT API I learned how to use! it’s become the Hello World of WinRT. After a little searching on dev.windows.com you will find everything you need to get started: You can download a sample app in C++, C# or Javascript; You can follow a Quickstart on capturing a photo with the camera dialog or using the MediaCapture API.

Not every great app requires 3-6 months development time. You can build apps that will surprise and delight users in under a week with the help of WinRT and a little imagination. It’s also a great chance to learn more about the Windows 8 platform and how to publish apps to the store before you release *the* big app you are working on. Don’t miss out on your chance to be first to the store. Get coding, and contact Win8CDN@Microsoft.com to request a session either in person or remotely in one of the app excellence labs and get your app in the store.

One last thing, if you decide to build and publish the match game I described above, let me know, I know some kids who will want to try it!

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  • Just curious as to why there are NO sample apps for Visual Basic???

  • Fair question Mark, when you have a question like that around anything Windows 8, best bet is to post it in one of the developer forums at dev.windows.com, I would suggest maybe posting it in the developer forum for VB & C# development on Windows 8 at that site

    social.msdn.microsoft.com/.../threads

    The Windows 8 team has been good about monitoring and responding to the forums at dev.windows.com

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