Ignition Showcase

Providing ISV's with the resources they need to create new opportunities on our emerging technologies.

About Ignition Showcase

Welcome to Ignition Showcase

Ignition Showcase is a site focused on building and enhancing the vibrant ecosystem of Independent Software Vendors and start-ups on the Microsoft platform.  The goal of Ignition Showcase is to bring together the right people and experiences from across Microsoft to provide ISVs with the resources they need to create new opportunities on our emerging technologies.  Through briefings, readiness programs, social networking, blogs, and other events, we hope to empower partners to succeed on the Microsoft platform. Stay tuned to our blog for info on resources and activities! 

  • Ignition Showcase

    Get up to $150 cash back* when you buy one SQL Azure Core subscription


    Microsoft designed the Windows Azure Platform to make it very easy for you to move your app to the cloud: use the tools you know, deploy your app on multiple instances without having to worry about servers, VMs or load balancers and enjoy the peace of mind that someone is minding the security patches, upgrades and maintenance.

    The SQL Azure Core subscription makes it even easier for you to move your app to the cloud, by giving you one SQL Azure database with up to 10GB capacity at 25% off of our normal consumption rates. And from June 1st until June 30th, if you buy one SQL Azure Extended subscriptions you may be eligible to receive a $150 rebate*.

    Windows Azure - Microsoft's Cloud Computing Platform


    Highlights of the offer include:

    1.  Purchase 1 SQL Core offer and receive $150 rebate.

    2.   Note: You need to hurry because the rebate goes away on June 30th

    4.  You can lock in the lower rate now for up to 12 month.

    Get started today, visit the Windows Azure offers page and buy one SQL Azure Core subscription, and then come back to redeem your offer.*

  • Ignition Showcase

    Webcast: Building Phone Applications with Windows Azure


    So, you’re building phone apps for Windows Phone 7 –maybe even iPhone/iPad – and you’re curious about what the cloud can offer.  Is it possible to deploy scalable, mobile Web applications on Windows Azure? How about storing data in the cloud?  Is it possible to use the cloud for push notifications to the device? 

      image    +    image

    In this session you'll learn how to build WP7 applications that are backed by scalable cloud components hosted in Windows Azure. This demo-focused session will cover the end-to-end experience and address how to tackle issues such as authentication, storage, and notification using the Windows Azure Toolkit for Windows Phone 7.

    In addition, we will also have Sebastian Witzmann, CEO of Vela Entertainment, who will present what Vela has achieved by harnessing the power of Windows Azure and Windows Phone 7 to create compelling applications and services for their customers. 

    Register for the event here:


    What to expect?

    Academy webcasts are 1 hour online events for Partners and Microsoft employees using Microsoft Office Live Meeting. Connect with Microsoft and other partners; listen to Microsoft subject matter experts as they discuss their areas of expertise related to Microsoft’s sales and competitive strategy. Learn more about Microsoft’s products (including insight into products on the launch horizon); positioning of business value to customers; sharing wins from the field and how the account team won; world class selling skills and best practice; and leveraging Microsoft resources to maximize your productivity. Webcasts for partners caters to all depths of knowledge.

    Before the Webcast:

    To attend our upcoming Webcast please ensure you have downloaded the latest version of Microsoft Office Live Meeting 2007.

    Join the Conference:

    - - Attendee URL:  https://www.livemeeting.com/cc/plc_usa/join?id=745621201152764325&role=attend&pw=K7H%24%25q%7E7f

    - - Toll-Free (Within US & Canada):  (800) 806-5561

    - - Audio Pin: 3198

    Technical Support:

    Having trouble with the Live Meeting conference on the day of the session?

    Click here for Live Meeting support or call: 866-493-2825

    If you are having issues with the Partner Learning Center (PLC) or accessing the live or on-demand event, please contact the Microsoft Partner team at: msuspr@microsoft.com.

    If you have any questions on this or future Academy Live webcasts, please contact us: mspal@microsoft.com.

  • Ignition Showcase

    Looking for Good Windows Azure Guidance?


    For some excellent Windows Azure guidance from the Microsoft Patterns and Practices Group don’t miss:

    And for a free Windows Azure Pass cloud account and how to try it out very quickly see: Try Windows Azure in 30 Minutes!


  • Ignition Showcase

    Building a Startup in a Weekend with BizSpark & SQL Azure


    This article is syndicated from http://bizspark.com. BizSpark™ is Microsoft’s program for helping startups succeed with software (including Azure benefits), support & visibility. To learn more and sign up, go to: http://bizspark.com.

    On the 30th anniversary of the 1st AIDS case ever documented, Scott Mustard pitched his & Claudia Pucci, M.D.’s vision for simplifying the arduous process doctors have to go through to document atypical cases, such as those first citings of HIV/AIDS.

    When doctors note unusual findings in a medical case, they search the medical literature and may document it if they can’t find an exact or very close match. Often such cases are never reported due to a cumbersome submission process. In the example of HIV/AIDS, a small tight knit community was seeing the same observations but collaboration was word of mouth and analog. This delayed the publication of the first case by years.

    Having a vetted central repository for this information – as envisioned by Claudia & Scott – would have been a huge help in identifying and treating new cases of HIV infections.

    Case Reportal: What intersting case do ou need to share with the medical community?

    How did it all come together?

    Scott had already been planning on attending Startup Weekend. When Claudia, an Attending Physician at Massachusetts General Hospital, mentioned her frustration with the current case reporting process, the idea for CaseReportal was born.

    Friday night, Scott stood up and pitched the idea to over 130 Startup Weekend attendees. Then he got busy, getting out into the audience with the mission of finding the right talent. And he succeeded – to the tune of 15 people, one of the largest teams at the event.

    15 people is a HUGE team to bring together to make something happen in 54 hours, especially when none of them had ever worked together before. Peeking into the conference room they took over for the event was like seeing mission control in action.

    Validating their Idea

    Half the team focused on the business end. They spoke to doctors. They did preliminary financial forecasting to start thinking about the revenue model. Over the weekend, they captured 20 data points from 18 doctors & medical personnel to validate their ideas.

    Can you DO an Azure solution in 54 hours using the free Azure in BizSpark?

    The other half of the team was split into designers and developers. They used ASP.NET MVC and started off on SQL Server. I invited them into BizSpark and let them know about the free Azure. Of course, they were skeptical. None of them had used Azure before and there’s no time for learning curves when you only have a weekend. But, they agreed to give it a try. We signed them up, a few clicks to create a database instance in the Azure Portal, and they tried connecting to it with SQL Server Management Studio. It worked!

    Encouraged, they tried updating the server in their code’s database connection string to point to SQL Azure and… it worked! Their code was automatically building the schema, so once they connected it built the schema and started using it just as expected.

    Nick Goodwin, their lead developer, admitted his surprise. “I had some pretty serious doubt about switching from a local DB to SQL Azure… but it was a breeze and just worked.”

    Demo Time

    5pm Sunday night. It’s time for each of the teams to demo what they’ve got to the other attendees and a panel of judges. The team got their software working literally within minutes of the demo and then Scott had to show it off and hope it would work.

    Claudia couldn’t be there in person because she was hosting colleagues from Mass General Hospital when the demo took place. Hating to miss it completely, she joined in with Skype. And good thing! One of the first questions was from judge Rob Go (Partner, NextView Ventures) about a popular physician’s website. The rest of the team – not being doctors – had a brief deer-in-the-headlights moment before Claudia popped on screen from Skype to provide a brilliant answer.

    Everyone breathed a sigh of relief and the rest of the questions went wonderfully. So well that the judges awarded CaseReportal 1st place. We also gave them an XBox/Kinect for their stellar use of Microsoft technology, which – as you can see in the picture below – they were pretty excited about. :)

    CaseReportal celebrating their win & the

    What’s next?

    A couple minutes after this picture was snapped, Scott rushed out to meet with Claudia and her MGH colleagues to show off CaseReportal. They were duly impressed and expressed strong interest in doing a pilot. Scott has since bought the trademark and is incorporating this week, with himself and Claudia as co-founders. Discussions are underway to keep a couple members of their Startup Weekend team moving forward.

    Congratulations, CaseReportal! We look forward to your continued success & following your positive impact on the medical community.

  • Ignition Showcase

    Startup Weekend Boston at Microsoft NERD


    Over 130 people – half techies, half business folks – converged on Microsoft NERD Startup Weekend at Microsoft NERDthis weekend to start their own companies, have fun & make a difference.

    Friday night, 50 of them stood up and pitched their ideas in quick 60 second spots, interrupted only for a quick game of multiplayer rock-player-scissors.

    Pitches ran the gamut from gamifying entrepreneurship to games to solve the world’s biggest problems. From help with dating to help finding babysitters. Helping investors forecast small company returns to a game that lets you invest in twitter hashtags.

    One pitched a jokeI’m going to create a double rainbow – I mean, a Double Game Layer around the world!”. Some just sounded like it – DidWeShag.com for sharing those vital date details. And a guy named Sting pitched something about the Police (PayYourTicketsOnline.com).

    There was some voting, but at the end of the night all that really mattered was weather you were willing to move forward with your idea. The 50 ideas dropped to 27, which eventually dropped to 16 – although part way through Saturday one of the entrepreneurs split from the startup he’d joined to return to his initial idea… And then there were 17.

    Startups ranged in size from 2 to 15 people composed of everything from hard core techies to designers, business folks, Whiteboards!even a doctor who came to build a startup for helping other doctors. Mentors came in on Saturday to help startups with their ideas. Several teams got out of the building to validate their ideas with potential customers. One even got a paying customer!

    There was much use of the ample whiteboards (we actually wiped NERD out of flip charts!) in brainstorming and sketching out designs. Much head’s down coding. And unbelievable levels of creativity, passion, and energy – which was good, as there wasn’t a whole lot of time for sleep over the weekend.Coding!

    By Sunday things got real as teams worked towards the 5pm deadline when they’d get 5 minutes each to demo their startups & compete for some pretty swanky prizes including a day at MassChallenge bootcamp, meetings with angels, an XBox/Kinect for the team with the best use of Microsoft technology, and… a Keurig coffee maker for the most energetic team!

    Startup Weekend Demos

    I’m not sure which was more entertaining – the demos themselves, including MapMyPad who actually broke out into the Hokey Pokey (forward to 2:10 in this video to see for yourself), or the twitter back channel.

    1st Place: CaseReportal. Vital insights for atypical cases.
    “WebMD for doctors”
    “CaseReportal is sooo gonna win the XBox360 and Kinect” @scottefein

    2nd Place: SellerCrowd. Salespeople working together to make contacts quicker.
    “Quora for sales weasles” @JoshSamBob

    3rd Place: CashTag. The Global Hashtag Exchange
    ”Twitter stock market for hash tags” @YoungImpact
    “I own $16K worth of #SpongeBob on @playcashtag. It's kind of embarrassing” @JoshSamBob

    Oh You Kids. Ensuring your inheritance.
    “I named this company. In exchange for 25% equity or a mojito” @JoshSamBob

    My Hobby Hub. Everyone has a talent to share.
    “Does Hobby Hub have a Pirate I can sail with?” @scottefein

    VidWheel. Create video channels of anything you could watch online.
    “Pandora for video.” @412clifton


    IdeaPhy. Turn your ideas into action.
    “Lets founders get crowdsourced feedback on their ideas. momma always said to share.” @412clifton

    Farora. Stay beautiful.
    “Built for booking [hair] salons!” @marshsutherland
    “Unfortunately, not enough hair to use Farora, but interesting idea!” @BrienBuckman

    PrescribableApps. Leveraging collaborative care for doctor-patient synergy.
    “Need to monitor your mental health? Now there's an @rxapps for that” @412clifton

    HereHello. Making pickup lines obsolete.
    "No more pickup lines? That's half the fun!” @jtagen

    eForecqst. Forecasting tomorrow's gems.
    “An interesting idea, which might be helpful for individual investors like myself.” @BrienBuckman
    “I'd use this service.” @scottefein

    HereHype. Connecting merchants downtime with students free time.
    “Seems to be a flash groupon with lots of high-fives” @jtagen
    "I wonder if they realize they look kinda like the Winkelvoss Twins...” @scottefein

    PocketRoster. Always keep your members at your fingertips!
    “A roster in your pocket.” @scottefein
    “Probably one of the most immediately useful things introduced at #SWBoston” @JarrettGoetz
    “Hard to say the name with a straight face, but the app is fantastic” @jtagen

    And, yup, CaseReportal won the XBox/Kinect for most awesome use of Microsoft technology – CONGRATS!!

    StartupWeekend winners: CaseReportal

    See More: Boston Startup Weekend Photos

  • Ignition Showcase

    Windows Azure Appliance News


    Fujitsu Ltd. and Microsoft Corp. have announced that the first release of its Global Cloud Platform service powered by Windows Azure, running in Fujitsu’s datacenter in Japan, will be launched in August 2011.

    The launch of this service is the result of the global strategic partnership between Fujitsu and Microsoft announced in July 2010. The partnership allows Fujitsu to work alongside Microsoft providing services to enable, deliver and manage solutions built on Windows Azure.

    As of April 21, 2011, Fujitsu has been offering the service in Japan on a trial basis to 20 companies. This launch marks the first official production release of the Windows Azure platform appliance by Fujitsu.

    By using FGCP/A5, customers will be able to quickly build elastically scalable applications using familiar Windows Azure platform technologies, streamline their information communications technology (ICT) operations management to accelerate business expansion, and enhance their competitive edge in the global market.

    For more details see this press release.

  • Ignition Showcase

    Building Line of Business Applications with Visual Studio LightSwitch


    In a previous blog post we told you about Visual Studio LightSwitch as a way to publish applications to Windows Azure and SQL Azure.

    This blog post discusses a video walkthrough that shows how easily create Line of Business (LOB) applications for the cloud by using Visual Studio LightSwitch and SQL Azure.


    A video highlights the benefits of Visual Studio LightSwitch and explains how you can quickly create powerful and interactive Silverlight applications with little or no code.

  • Ignition Showcase

    Cloudy in New York!


    This year for the second year in a row I presented a talk at Cloud Expo in New  York.  This time I had one of the two General (full-audience) sessions on the first day. 

    Cloud Expo

    My talk: Patterns for Cloud Computing was attended by about 800 in the main presentation hall and overflow room. 

    Using the artifice of Jim, a typical software architect, we discussed his quandary in first understanding the cloud and second in determining if the cloud could be of any value to him in solving his company’s business problems. 

    The talk began with with an architectural model of the cloud as defined and popularized by the National Institute of Standards (NIS). This included discussing the 5 Essential characteristics, 3 Service models and 4 Deployment models defined by NIST.

    We then covered four popular design patterns for taking advantage of the cloud, illustrating them all with Windows Azure.  These patterns were in the area of using the cloud for:

    • Scalability
    • Compute
    • Storage
    • Inter-company communications

    Judging from the number of attendees that kept me talking about the cloud for a half-hour after the presentation and the number of business cards that I handed out it is pretty clear that there is an incredible amount of interest in  leveraging the cloud in general and Windows Azure in particular.

    You can download the presentation deck from my SkyDrive here.

    On Tuesday I got to be on the CTO Power Panel with several other panelists from companies such as: Eucalyptus, McAfee, Cloud.com, Dell and Voxtel. The subject of the panel was Has Cloud Computing Changed Enterprise IT Forever and for Always?

    Here is a picture of me hogging the stage. Smile


    One of the questions that was asked was about Clouds and Open Source and I responded with all the things that we are doing to support Open Source in our Cloud: Providing a PHP SDK, an Eclipse Plug in, and even enabling the use of Apache Tomcat in Windows Azure.  The latter was even a surprise to some of the panelists. Smile 

    I also told them how we have donated our Hypervisor to the Open Cloud Stack initiative.  One of the panelists was from Cloud.com (one of the leaders of that initiative) and he confirmed that was indeed the case. 

    Another question was on how the Cloud Changes things and I responded with three things:

    1. The cloud gives enterprises another dimension that they can use to more rapidly solve the business problems of their companies and allow them to better align IT with business. (I mentioned IT Doesn’t matter and how IT is still recovering from that.  It got a lot of laughs.
    2. The change to an Opex Model from a Capex model (that got lots of nods),
    3. Scalability: Not having to buy capacity in large chunks. Being able to match capacity with demand.

    Video from the panel should be posted shortly as well.

  • Ignition Showcase

    Cloud Expo New York (June 6-9, 2011)


    I am looking forward to learn latest on the Cloud Computing Spectrum, meet several customers and partners and find ways we can help them by leveraging Microsoft Public & Private Cloud offerings (Windows Azure, Office 365, Dynamics CRM Online, Windows Intune, Windows Server Hyper-V).

    If you are around and would like to meet me, please feel free to email me.

    Windows Azure logo.png    

    Microsoft Office 365                   image


    Sanjay Jain

    ISV Architect Evangelist

    Microsoft Corporation

    Blog: http://Blogs.msdn.com/SanjayJain

    Twitter: http://twitter.com/SanjayJain369

  • Ignition Showcase

    Windows 8 Changes Everything!





    BUILD is the event that shows you how to take advantage of the future of Windows. Get insight on creating touch-centric user experiences, fast, fluid, and dynamic applications that leverage the power and flexibility of the core of Windows, used by more than a billion people around the world.

    Learn how to create powerful new apps while retaining the ability to use your existing apps. See how web-connected and web-powered apps built using HTML5 and JavaScript have full access to the power of the PC.  Explore how the full power of hardware-accelerated Internet Explorer 10 transforms your experiences with the web.

    See how the UI was designed to work seamlessly with a diversity of devices and form factors.  BUILD is the first place to dive deep into the future of Windows.

    If you are a contemporary developer, who thrives on the newest and coolest, who loves the freedom of the web and the power of all devices from mobile to desktop, you need to join us to help BUILD the future. Our approach means no compromises—you get to use whatever kind of device you prefer to run the apps you love.

    Register by August 1st and save $500.

    In 1995, Windows changed the PC. BUILD will show you that Windows 8 changes everything.



    © 2011 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

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