• DaveDev

    Funny Video of Bill Gates' last day at Microsoft



    If you have ever been to PDC or TechED you probably have seen some of the funny videos Bill puts on.  I saw this last night while watching the Live CES feed, absolutely hilarious.  Brian Williams, Steve Ballmer, Matthew McConaughey and many others all make appearances....

    Check out the video here!

    Watch the entire keynote at the Microsoft CES Site here

    The full keynote is worth checking out.  Really good Surface demo by Bill and some awesome stuff in there from Robbie Bach on Zune Social, Xbox and Sync.

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  • DaveDev

    Are you a Developer or Designer in the NY/NJ/PA area using Microsoft Software? Let’s chat!


    It's about the People!

    Our fiscal year at Microsoft ends in June and the new year begins in July.  It is a time of reflection and re-alignment as we look at past successes and how to best serve our customers moving forward into the new year.  For me it also meant being asked if I wanted to take on a new challenge.  Up until this point I’ve been focused exclusively on large enterprise accounts.  Most of what I’ve done shows up in whitepapers or the stuff you see during the MIX keynotes. 

    My main focus this year will be on the people themselves within PA/NJ/NY.  What makes you guys tick?  What are you looking for out of the teams in Redmond? “But Dave you have all this online stuff you do and I’ve seen you at Code Camps!”  True - for those that know me I’m not a big title guy.  I’ve always felt you shouldn’t let your title dictate what you do.  Go out and fill the needs you see and let them figure out your title.  This change is a recognition of that work.  It frees me up so that I can spend more time directly with you – the users of Microsoft software no matter the venue.  Whether you work for a Microsoft Partner, a Corporation, attend a Code Camp, run a User Group, go to a Conference or sit in on a Launch Event I’ll be there! 

    Astronomy Club

    I’ve always been a “community” guy at heart.  Going back to high school I proudly lead the Astronomy Club.  I know – so geeky right?  It didn’t matter.  It was a place for us to relax and learn from each other without worrying about the school’s agenda.  That’s what excites me about the communities I have been visiting these past few weeks – passion.  It takes me back to what made all those high school days so exciting.  People are there because they care about their craft and they care about helping each other learn. 

    I hope you’ll let me be part of that.  I’m listening.

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  • DaveDev

    Handling Fullscreen, Snapped and Filled states in Windows 8 Metro Style apps using CSS3 and JavaScript




    Attention – the code in this post has been updated to work with Windows 8 Release Preview.  To find out more details on migrating your app from CP to RP read my post here.


    In my last blog post I discussed the importance of supporting the numerous shapes and sizes Windows 8 devices will be in our Metro Style Apps.  This post will cover how to handle viewstate changes in our game which happens when the user runs our app side by side with another Metro Style App.

    Scaling to Different Screens



    The Guidelines for snapped and fill views define three states we will need to handle.  The first, full screen, is the default state for all Metro Style Apps.  When a user drags another window onto the screen they have the option of having it become the current running app, snapping the new app to the side, or running it filled.  In the case of a full screen app only one application would be visible so if the user dragged another app onto the screen our application would go into suspend mode after 10 seconds of inactivity (more on app lifecycle in another post).  If they snapped the app our game would go into filled mode.  If they snapped our game then the app they dragged over would move into snapped mode.

    Here are what the three different states look like:


    In the below example my game is running full screen as a normal Metro Style App.


    Full screen



    In the snap example I dragged over Internet Explorer onto the screen and was given a slider bar in between both apps.  By moving the slider over to the left I was able to have the game run in a small window and our browser in a larger window.  In this scenario our game will report a snapped Viewstate and Internet Explorer will report Filled.




    If I wanted more screen space for my game I could drag the slider bar over to the right.  This would then send our game into a Filled state and our Internet Explorer window into a Snapped state. 




    It is important to point out I can also rearrange these windows by grabbing the snapped Internet Explorer window and moving it to the left.  This will automatically move our game filled window to the right.  Grabbing either window and moving it off of the bottom of the screen will return the remaining app to full screen mode.


    Detecting Viewstate changes

    The first thing we need to do is define how wide these new screen states will be.  The good news is that Snapped view will always be 320px in width which will make adjusting our game coordinate system much easier.  Filled state will always be the width of the screen minus 320px and snapped state will always be 320px wide.  Let’s go ahead and add a variable to handle the size of snapped view in our calculations.

    var SNAPPED_VIEW = 320;

    Next we need to set up the event handler for any Viewstate changes.  This is done via the ApplicationView class for the current view.  In the below example I am assigning the viewstatechanged event of the current application view to my own onViewStateChanged function. This got a lot simpler for the Windows 8 Release Preview.  We need only add an event listener to the window resize event like so:

    window.addEventListener("resize", onViewStateChanged);


    When onViewStateChanged runs it enumerates through all available viewstates and passes the current view state to a custom function I call showMenu.

    function onViewStateChanged(eventArgs) {
            var viewStates = Windows.UI.ViewManagement.ApplicationViewState, msg;
            var newViewState = Windows.UI.ViewManagement.ApplicationView.value;
            if (newViewState === viewStates.snapped) {
            } else if (newViewState === viewStates.filled) {
            } else if (newViewState === viewStates.fullScreenLandscape) {
            } else if (newViewState === viewStates.fullScreenPortrait) {
                //Currently not supported


    Handling layout changes

    showMenu is the same function I call when my game is first loaded or the user clicks on the AppBar to return to the menu.  This will pause the game for our user when they are dragging in another app to work with.  They can then continue game play when they are ready.  The full updated showMenu function is as follows:

    //Set Up Menu Screen UI Elements
     function showMenu(event) {
         menuEnabled = true;
         txtPlayerName.style.visibility = "hidden";
         txtScore.style.visibility = "hidden";
         imgPlayer.style.visibility = "hidden";
         imgMenu.style.visibility = "visible";
         btnStart.style.visibility = "visible";
         txtVersion.innerHTML = GAME_VERSION;
         txtVersion.style.visibility = "visible";
         txtLevel.style.visibility = "hidden";
         //Detect View State
         if (event === 'snapped') {
             canvas.width = SNAPPED_VIEW;
         else if (event === 'filled') {
             canvas.width = FULLSCREEN_WIDTH - SNAPPED_VIEW;
         else {
             canvas.width = FULLSCREEN_WIDTH;
         //Readjust canvas for Snapped/Filled modes
         canvas.height = window.innerHeight;
         SCREEN_HEIGHT = canvas.height;
         SCREEN_WIDTH = canvas.width;
         //Set boundries to be one ship size
         MAX_X = canvas.width - (SHIP_WIDTH + 20);
         MAX_Y = canvas.height - (SHIP_HEIGHT + 50);
         var menuX, btnX, btnY;
         menuX = (SCREEN_WIDTH - imgMenu.width) / 2;
         btnX = (SCREEN_WIDTH - btnStart.clientWidth) / 2;
         btnY = (SCREEN_HEIGHT - btnStart.clientHeight) / 2;
         imgMenu.style.posLeft = menuX;
         btnStart.style.posLeft = btnX;
         btnStart.style.posTop = btnY;
         //clear screen
         ctx.clearRect(0, 0, SCREEN_WIDTH, SCREEN_HEIGHT);


    Specifically this function changes the width of our game screen and then re-calculates the size of the screen so that our ships will disappear when they hit the edge.  This is done by grabbing the width of the current screen and then calculating in SNAPPED_VIEW.

    //Detect View State
    if (event === 'snapped') {
        canvas.width = SNAPPED_VIEW;
    else if (event === 'filled') {
        canvas.width = FULLSCREEN_WIDTH - SNAPPED_VIEW;
    else {
        canvas.width = FULLSCREEN_WIDTH;
    //Readjust canvas for Snapped/Filled modes
    canvas.height = window.innerHeight;
    SCREEN_HEIGHT = canvas.height;
    SCREEN_WIDTH = canvas.width;


    Now that we are properly handling viewstate changes and adjusted our coordinate system correctly we need to update our game user interface.  All Metro Style Apps will have predefined layouts for their viewstates thanks to CSS3 Media Queries.  If you haven’t worked with CSS3 Media Queries much before I highly recommend Responsive Web Design by Ethan Marcotte.  He takes you through designing a website application that adapts its screen layout based on different screen sizes and device form factors.  

    The default Metro Style App templates automatically do this for us by seting up media queries inside the default.css file.  This is where you can adjust layout for all viewstates as well as portrait and landscape.

    @media screen and (-ms-view-state: fullscreen-landscape) {
    @media screen and (-ms-view-state: filled) {
    @media screen and (-ms-view-state: snapped) {
        #imgMenu {
            -ms-transform: translate(0px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.50);
        #btnStart {
            -ms-transform: translate(0px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.60);
        #txtNewLevel {
            -ms-transform: translate(0px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.30);
        #imgPlayer {
            opacity: 0;
        #txtLevel {
            -ms-transform: translate(-120px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.30);
        #txtPlayerName {
            -ms-transform: translate(70px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.30);
        #txtScore {
            -ms-transform: translate(0px, 0px) rotate(0deg) scale(0.30);
    @media screen and (-ms-view-state: fullscreen-portrait) {


    Due to Filled viewstate only shrinking by 320px I found all of my on screen elements to look fine as is. 

    Snapped mode presented some challenges as I needed to shrink both the gamescore, player name, and level texts.  A lot of what you will do here is through trial and error.  I kept tweaking the scale until it “felt right.”  I chose to use CSS3 2D Transforms to scale out the text so that it filled the screen correctly at the same time remaining readable.  I chose to drop the player image when in this mode as it became too small to be of any value.  Here is a screenshot of the new snapped user interface layout while the game is being played.


    You will notice I kept the sizes of the ships the same.  I am currently debating whether I should scale them down or change the direction of the ships to vertical.  This would almost give a different game experience when in snapped mode.  That is the beauty of CSS3 Media Queries in action as we can completely change what elements look like based on the screen size.



    I hope this post has given you an idea of how easy it is to handle Viewstate changes in your Metro Style App using CSS3 and JavaScript.  If you are currently working on a Windows 8 app and want to get into the Windows Store I would love to hear about it!

    You may also want to check out my previous Windows 8 Metro Style Development Tips:

  • DaveDev

    Over 20+ hours of free WPF training videos!


    With all of the Silverlight Training resources I posted recently it is now time for some WPF love.  =)


    Be sure to check out the WPF Bootcamp at Mix University

    With over 20 hours of hands on labs, customer examples, and a plethora of topics it will take you through WPF inside and out from start to finish.  Here is just a sample:

    Keynote: Windows Presentation Foundation
    Ian Ellison-Taylor

    A Lap Around Windows Presentation Foundation
    Rob Relyea

    A Lap Around Microsoft Expression Blend
    Pete Faraday

    Building WPF Applications Part I
    Ian Griffiths

    Building WPF Applications Part II
    Ian Griffiths

    LAB: Building WPF Applications

    LAB: Building WPF XAML Browser Applications

    LAB: Interactive Fabrikam Catalog in Blend

    Controls, Styles and Templates
    Kevin Moore

    LAB: Creating a Button with Expression Blend and Design

    LAB: Creating a Glass Button in Blend

    Data Binding with WPF
    Beatriz de Oliveira Costa

    WPF Partner Showcase
    Tim Sneath

    Documents, Text and the Reading Experience
    Kevin Gjerstad

    LAB: Using Data Binding in WPF

    LAB: Reading Experience

    Windows Forms Interoperability
    Scott Morrison

    Visual Studio Orcas Enhancements for WPF
    Mark Wilson-Thomas, Mark Boulter

    Grab all the content here today!


    Also don't forgot about WindowsClient.NET.  There is entire learning section around WPF filled with short 15-20 minute digestible videos around various WPF topics.

    Check it out here! 

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