April, 2012

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    Here’s to the first release from MS Open Tech: Redis on Windows

    • 16 Comments

    The past few weeks have been very busy in our offices as we announced the creation of Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc. Now that the dust has settled it’s time for us to resume our regular cadence in releasing code, and we are happy to share with you the very first deliverable from our new company: a new and significant iteration of our work on Redis on Windows, the open-source, networked, in-memory, key-value data store.

    The major improvements in this latest version involve the process of saving data on disk. Redis on Linux uses an OS feature called Fork/Copy On Write. This feature is not available on Windows, so we had to find a way to be able to mimic the same behavior without changing completely the save on disk process so as to avoid any future integration issues with the Redis code.

    The version we released today implements the Copy On Write process at the application level: instead of relying on the OS we added code to Redis so that some data structures are duplicated in such a way that Redis can still serve requests from clients while saving data on disk (thus achieving the same effect of Fork/Copy On Write does automatically on Linux).

    You can find the code for this new version on the new MS Open Tech repository in GitHub, which is currently the place to work on the Windows version of Redis as per guidance from Salvatore Sanfilippo, the original author of the project. We will also continue working with the community to create a solid Windows port.

    We consider this not to be production ready code, but a solid code base to be shared with the community to solicit feedback: as such, while we pursue stabilization, we are keeping the older version as default/stable on the GitHub repository. To try out the new code, please go to the bksavecow branch.

    In the next few weeks we plan to extensively test the code so that developers can use it for more serious testing. In the meantime, we will keep looking at the ‘save on disk’ process to find out if there are other opportunities to make the code perform even better. We will promote the bksavecow branch to master as soon as we (and you!) are confident the code is stable.

    Please send your feedback, file suggestions and issues to our GitHub repository. We look forward to further iterations and to working with the Redis community at large to make the Windows experience even better.

    Claudio Caldato

    Principal Program Manager

    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

    A subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation.

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    More news from MS Open Tech: announcing the open source Metro style theme for jQuery Mobile

    • 25 Comments

    Starting today, the Metro style theme for JQuery Mobile, the popular open source mobile user interface framework, is available for download on GitHub and can be used as a NuGet package in Visual Studio.

    The theme enables HTML5 pages to adapt automatically to the Metro design style when rendered on Windows Phone 7.5. The Metro style theme is open source and available for download here. This new Metro style theme’s development was sponsored by Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc. working closely with Sergei Grebnov, an Apache Cordova committer and jQuery Mobile developer.

    The theme looks just gorgeous, doesn’t it?

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    The CSS and Javascript theme adapts to the current theme used in Windows Phone and applies the right styling to the jQuery Mobile controls.This allows mobile HTML5 web sites and hybrid applications to naturally integrate into the Windows Phone Metro style experience. This offers developers the choice of rapidly integrating the theme into their existing application but also to contribute to this open source project through GitHub.

    You can see an extensive demo of the theme on this page and you can learn more on this site where we are publishing new articles, references and source code sample for developing with Apache Cordova and the Metro style theme for jQuery Mobile.

    This is another milestone in our continuous engagement with the community. Our team has been working closely with the Windows Phone division to support the mobile HTML5 and JavaScript open source communities over the last year to bring popular open source projects to Windows Phone:

    • A few months ago, we sponsored the development of full Windows Phone support for PhoneGap (now Apache Cordova), the open source framework that lets applications be built for iOS, Android, Windows Phone and other mobile platforms using HTML5, CSS and JavaScript.
    • At the same time significant improvements were brought to jQuery Mobile (read more about this in our previous blog post): feedback from the community has been great and was partly responsible for our decision to expand our engagement with jQuery Mobile and sponsor this work.

    We believe it is important for developers to have choices when targeting Windows Phone, and we also want them to be able to deliver a good experience to the users of their applications, especially when making the choice of using Web standards (HTML5, CSS and JavaScript) to target multiple mobile platforms by picking solutions such as Apache Cordova.

    To do so, developers already enjoy a selection of Apache Cordova Plugins that give their application a Windows Phone touch such as Social Share, Bing Map launcher and Live Tile. Now developers can use the new open source Metro style theme for jQuery Mobile to give their mobile apps and websites the Metro style look and feel, and offer the final users an experience similar to the one they get with native applications.

    As usual we are very interested in hearing from developers and gathering feedback about the experience of developing HTML5-based applications and websites on Windows Phone. Let us know what other features, tools and frameworks you’d like to see.

    Abu Obeida Bakhach
    Program Manager
    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.
    A subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    Announcing one more way Microsoft will engage with the open source and standards communities

    • 41 Comments

    JeanOpenTechI am really excited to be able to share with you today that Microsoft has announced a new wholly owned subsidiary known as Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc., to advance the company’s investment in openness – including interoperability, open standards and open source.

    My existing Interoperability Strategy team will form the nucleus of this new subsidiary, and I will serve as President of Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

    The team has worked closely with many business groups on numerous standards initiatives across Microsoft, including the W3C’s HTML5, IETF’s HTTP 2.0, cloud standards in DMTF and OASIS, and in many open source environments such as Node.js, MongoDB and Phonegap/Cordova.

    We help provide open source building blocks for interoperable cloud services and collaborate on cloud standards in DMTF and OASIS; support developer choice of programming languages to enable Node.js, PHP and Java in addition to .NET in Windows Azure; and work with the PhoneGap/Cordova and jQuery Mobile and other open source communities to support Windows Phone.

    It is important to note that Microsoft and our business groups will continue to engage with the open source and standards communities in a variety of ways, including working with many open source foundations such as Outercurve Foundation, the Apache Software Foundation and many standards organizations. Microsoft Open Technologies is further demonstration of Microsoft’s long-term commitment to interoperability, greater openness, and to working with open source communities.

    Today, thousands of open standards are supported by Microsoft and many open source environments including Linux, Hadoop, MongoDB, Drupal, Joomla and others, run on our platform.

    The subsidiary provides a new way of engaging in a more clearly defined manner. This new structure will help facilitate the interaction between Microsoft’s proprietary development processes and the company’s open innovation efforts and relationships with open source and open standards communities.

    This structure will make it easier and faster to iterate and release open source software, participate in existing open source efforts, and accept contributions from the community. Over time the community will see greater interaction with the open standards and open source worlds.

    As a result of these efforts, customers will have even greater choice and opportunity to bridge Microsoft and non-Microsoft technologies together in heterogeneous environments.

    I look forward to sharing more on all this in the months ahead, as well as to working not only with the existing open source developers and standards bodies we work with now, but with a range of new ones.

    Thanks,

    Jean

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    BuildNewGames.com to help developers write cross-browser code

    • 0 Comments

    BuildNewGames.com, a new site to make building web games easier for developers using HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript, is now live!

    Along with a new partnership with Bocoup, Microsoft announced @ JSConf the launch of this new site.

    You can read the post from Justin Garret, Senior Product Manager in the IE team, announcing the partnership and the new site launch.

    Over the next few months, the site will feature 50 tutorials ranging from the coding basics of games all the way to how to make money across a range of platforms.  Follow @buildnewgames or @IE for the latest.

    Developers want to be able to write code that works reliably in all modern browsers, including ie10/9, Chrome and Firefox, along with mobile browsers, resulting in a complex test matrix and higher development costs. Through standards bodies leadership and practical learning, Microsoft wants to help Web developers have an easier time targeting various browsers at once, allowing them to concentrate on innovating and delivering an outstanding Web and gaming experience to final users.

    BuildNewGames.com already features technical articles on Animation, Compositing, Graphics, Mobile, SVG, Sprites, Tools, WebSockets.

    Developing games is becoming lots of fun again!

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