Ian Moulster's blog

A Microsoft employee translating Microsoft technology into plain English

Source Code for great Windows Live applications

Source Code for great Windows Live applications

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I need to make you aware of a couple of really nice examples of Windows Live applications that we've just released. What do I mean by "Windows Live applications"? These are web apps that are built on top of a whole host of Windows Live services by using the Windows Live APIs.

What they demonstrate is that you can very quickly, and pretty easily, build some really compelling websites using these services. And the best thing is that we're releasing the source code for these as well so you can not only unpick them to understand how they work, but also use them for the basis for your own projects.

In fact, some of you may recall an application called "ibuyspy" that did a similar job for ASP.NET: a complete working example of a commerce web app with source code which then went on to be used broadly by people to build their own ASP.NET sites.

The plan is to release more of these covering a number of typical scenarios, most of which relate to social networking in some way. Let me talk briefly about the two we have released so far:

  1. The "Contoso Bicycle Club": This represents a typical club site that you might create where people need to network with each other, read announcements, and generally share their passion for something. In this case it's a bicycle club but you could of course morph it into any kind of club you like. Click on the "London River Thames" ride and click the bike cam link - this is really cool, you get a first-person bicycle ride through London that gets plotted on a Virtual Earth map in synch with the video. Switch the map to birds eye view while this is happening for best effect.
  2. The "Contoso University": As the name suggests, this is a social networking site that might be used at a University, again centred around people's passions and interests. The video playing is using Silverlight Streaming, much of the content you see comes from a Windows Live Space, and there are ads from Windows Live Expo. If you grant access to your hotmail/messenger contacts the site can be used to plot the position of your friends on the university campus map.

The source code is up on Codeplex at http://www.codeplex.com/WLQuickApps so take a look and see what you think.

Final point: We have managed to secure the author of these applications to present a slot at Mix UK, drilling down into how they're built and how you can take advantage of them. It should be a great session so make sure you sign up to the event!

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  • Ian, for me both those sites crash IE7 on Windows Vista when trying to play the videos (either the bike cam or the university background video).

  • Chris - they run on Windows Vista / IE7 for me. Do you have an old install of Silverlight beta by any chance?

  • Besides having a great name :) let me say you are a mind reader.  I just started helping an uncle start a tandem bike shop I searched all over the contoso samples remembering it was a bike company.  I had already planned on including the sections you did for  a demo while a ton of content is generated and the business takes off.  Thanks for a great starting UI.

  • One of the coolest things about the recently released Windows Live quickapps is the demonstration of

  • I have mentioned the Windows Live QuickApps previously as I feel they're a really good way to get hold

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