October, 2012

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    Sublime Text, Vi, Emacs: TypeScript enabled!

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    TypeScript is a new open and interoperable language for application scale JavaScript development created by Microsoft and released as open source on CodePlex. You can learn about this typed superset of JavaScript that compiles to plain JavaScript reading Soma’s blog.

    At Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc. we are thrilled that the discussion is now open with the community on the language specification: you can play (or even better start developing with TypeScript) with the bits, read the specification and provide your feedback on the discussion forum. We also wanted to make it possible for developers to use their favorite editor to write TypeScript code, in addition to the TypeScript online playground and the Visual Studio plugin.

    Below you will find sample syntax files for Sublime Text, Vi and Emacs that will add syntax highlighting to the files with a .ts extension. We want to hear from you on where you think we should post these files for you to be able to optimize them and help us make your TypeScript programming an even greater experience, so please comment on this post or send us a message.

     

    sublime_text_icon_2181
    TypeScript support for
    Sublime Text
    emacs
    TypeScript support for
    Emacs
    vim-logo
    TypeScript support for
    Vim

    Olivier Bloch
    Senior Technical Evangelist
    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    //build/ today with open source frameworks on Windows Phone 8

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    Added support for Windows Phone 8 in Apache Cordova, Sencha Touch, Cocos2D, Ogre3D and other open source frameworks.

    The cool news for developers keeps on rolling at //build/ 2012. We’re thrilled to relay the announcements from a broad range of open source communities that their support for Windows Phone 8 goes live on “Day 1” of the SDK availability, along with other partners. There are several open source frameworks to choose from today.

    The Windows Phone team and Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc. engaged early in the process with open source communities to enable Windows Phone 8 in these popular open source and cross platform frameworks. We provided technical support and information, gave early access to the tools and MS Open Tech contributed code to the Cocos 2D and Ogre3D projects.

    The market opportunity just got bigger and easier for all developers with this news. We believe it is important that developers have choices and can reuse their skills and code to build Windows Phone 8 applications.

    This added support for Windows Phone 8 in diverse open source and cross platform frameworks was made possible thanks to new features in Windows Phone 8: native C++ programming and Internet Explorer 10 expanded HTML5 support.

    Developers who have applications based on these frameworks can publish them to the Windows Phone Store in record time. And this applies to various domains, like gaming with C++ or C# frameworks such as Cocos 2D, Ogre 3D and SharpDX, or cross platform development with HTML5 and JavaScript leveraging Apache Cordova, Trigger.io, Sencha Touch or jQuery Mobile. Developers using popular open source tools and frameworks such as SQLite or GalaSoft MVVM toolkit will also be able to reuse their code and skills.

    “Nearly 50% of Sencha customers have expressed interest in building apps for Windows Phone 8 in the next 6-12 months. Supporting Windows Phone 8 is a natural choice for Sencha to enable our customers to build universal apps for mobile devices.” - Abraham Elias, CTO Sencha Inc.

    Jay Garcia, CTO at Modus Create, and his team are developing a mobile companion application for the game Diablo III:
    Using Blizzard’s Diablo III web APIs in combination with PhoneGap and Sencha Touch, we were able to hugely increase the game’s fan base because we could build and publish our application to both iOS and Android with the same HTML5 and JavaScript code base. It literally took us a few days to get the same code to run on Windows Phone 8 thanks to this newly added support.”

    You can read more about Modus Create work to migrate their application to Windows Phone 8 on their blog post.

    Craig Walker, CTO at Xero commented on the new support for Windows Phone 8 in Sencha Touch:
    Using web standards-based technologies such as Sencha Touch and Apache Cordova for our mobile accounting software application Xero Touch helped us target a wide range of platforms so our customers could focus on their business, not the underlying technology. Support for these technologies in Windows Phone 8 tools made it an easy Xero Touch build for our dev team, and a smart addition for our customers who need flexibility managing their business on the go.”

    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc., supported the jQuery Mobile and Sencha Touch communities to deliver themes that will allow developers to integrate their applications into the Windows Phone 8 user experience.

    As Craig Walker from Xero stresses, it is crucial for developers to be able to deliver a seamless consumer experience integrated into the platform. You can see below a video demonstrating the Sencha Touch theme for Windows Phone 8.

    Brett Nagy, Technical Director at Microgroove, and his team got a chance to try the Windows Phone 8 tools and the early Sencha Touch support for Windows Phone 8:
    Our apps have been making companies more productive for well over a decade. Sencha Touch support for Windows Phone 8 has made our engineer team more productive by allowing us to easily re-use code from one mobile platform to another.
    Within a couple of hours, we had the basic Windows Phone 8 themed version of an existing app without requiring any changes to its JavaScript codebase. Now that producing builds that run on Windows Phone 8 is part of our regular workflow, the next step is to build out functionality that really takes advantage of that platform. Knowing that we can do that in HTML + JS allows us to extend our reach beyond iOS and Android with minimal change to our projects timelines.

    For developers using jQuery Mobile, Sergey Grebnov from Akvelon, who previously published a jQuery Mobile theme for Windows Phone 7.5 is releasing a new jQuery Mobile theme for Windows phone 8. You can see below a short demo of how to apply the theme to a Windows Phone 8 application.

    This is the first time so many open source and cross platform frameworks are on board with Windows Phone on the first day of a new SDK version release. It is great to see how much communities are eager to work with Windows Phone.

    And today is just the beginning. We want to continue this effort to help open source developers enable their frameworks on Windows Phone 8. It’s important for developers to reuse their skills, expand the market opportunity to make money on our devices, and build the next generation of apps. Imagine the possibilities.

    Go check out the various frameworks and let us know if you think of other ones you would love to be able to use to build Windows Phone 8 applications.

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    New open source options for Windows Azure web sites: MediaWiki and phpBB

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     Need to set up a powerful wiki quickly? Looking for an open source bulletin board solution for your Windows Azure Web Site? Today, we are announcing the availability of MediaWiki and phpBB in the Windows Azure Web Applications gallery. MediaWiki is the open source software that powers WikiPedia and other large-scale wiki projects, and phpBB is the most widely used open source bulletin board system in the world.

    You can deploy a free Windows Azure Web Site running MediaWiki or phpBB with just a few mouse clicks. Sign up for the free trial if you don’t already have a Windows Azure subscription, and then select the option to create a new web site from the gallery.

    This will take you to a screen where you can select from a list of applications to be automatically installed by Windows Azure on the new web site you’re creating. You’ll see many popular open source packages there, including MediaWiki and phpBB. Select the option you’d like, and then you’ll be prompted for a few configuration details such as the URL for your web site and database settings for the application:

    Fill in the required fields, click the Next button, and you’ll soon have a running ready-to-use web site that is hosting your selected application.

    The Windows Web App Gallery also includes MediaWiki and phpBB, so you can deploy either of them on-premises as well. See the MediaWiki and phpBB entries in the gallery.

    The MediaWiki project now includes the Windows Azure Storage extensions that allow you to story media files on Windows Azure. You can use this functionality for MediaWiki sites deploy to Windows Azure Web Sites, or for other deployments as well. More information can be found on the MediaWiki wiki.

    A big thanks to everyone who helped to make MediaWiki and phpBB work so well on Windows Azure! Markus Glazer, volunteer developer at Wikimedia Foundation, submitted the MediaWiki package to the Windows Azure Web Sites Gallery and integrated MediaWiki with Windows Azure Storage. Nils Adermann from the phpBB community submitted the updated phpBB 3.0.11 package to the Windows Azure Web Sites Gallery with the necessary changes for integration with Windows Azure.

    The addition of phpBB and MediaWiki is a great example of Windows Azure’s support for open source software applications, frameworks, and tools. We’re continuing to work with these and other communities to make Windows Azure a great place to host open source applications. What other open source technologies would you like to be able to use on Windows Azure?

    Doug Mahugh
    Senior Technical Evangelist
    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    W3C’s Web Platform Docs – Your “Go To” for All Things Web Development

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    From:

    Jean Paoli, President, Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

    Michael Champion, Senior Program Manager, Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

     

    We are thrilled to share the news that the W3C announced the alpha release of Web Platform Docs. Adobe, Facebook, Google, HP, Microsoft, Mozilla, Nokia and Opera are among the stewards of the project. Together, we worked with the W3C on creating this wiki-styled site and contributed thousands of web documentation articles.

    W3C’s Web Platform Docs is a community site designed to be a comprehensive and authoritative resource for developers to help them build modern web applications that will work across browsers and devices, and share their own expertise, which will further the goal of web platform interoperability and same markup.

    Currently, developers need to do a lot of research about what technologies work on which platforms when building websites and applications with HTML5, CSS and other open web standards. It’s costly and inefficient for them to spend precious hours consulting multiple resources to understand how to employ web technologies in a way that functions across browsers, operating systems and devices. W3C’s Web Platform Docs addresses these issues by offering a single “go-to” source for web developer documentation, and providing a site that the community can continually edit and improve.

    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc., represented by Michael Champion, and the Microsoft Internet Explorer team represented by Eliot Graff, have been involved from the very inception of the project as we strongly believe this community site is key in the journey to an interoperable web platform and same markup.

    As an initial contribution, Microsoft donated more than 3,200 topics from MSDN and will continue to add content moving forward. This is an open community – web developers can get an account at webplatform.org to make their own contribution – fill in gaps, correct errors, and flesh out the documentation with sample code to explain how to use the web platform to its full potential.

    So what does this mean for you, the developer?

    You will save time and resources, knowing you can consult with confidence a community-curated site to learn about standards, innovations and best practices including:

    • What technologies really interoperate across platforms and devices;
    • The standardization status of each technology specification;
    • The stability and implementation status of specific features in actual browsers.

    W3C’s Web Platform Docs is an open site where anyone can become a member and contribute. Microsoft and the other founding stewards helped boot up the wiki (and will continue to contribute new content), but YOU, the developer community, own the site. W3C convened the community and will administer webplatform.org in the future, but you don’t have to join W3C to participate in this effort.

    All materials on W3C’s Web Platform Docs are freely available and licensed to foster sharing and reuse.

    Begin simplifying your web development and check out W3C’s Web Platform Docs today. Better still, sign up for an account, find a topic of interest, and contribute your expertise!

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    Interoperability Elements of a Cloud Platform: Technical Examples

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    Two years ago we shared our view on Interoperability Elements of a Cloud Platform. Back then we talked to customers and developers and came out with an overview of an open and interoperable cloud, based on four distinct elements: Data Portability, Standards, Ease of Migration and Deployment, and Developer Choice. Since then, we have been laser focused on the quest for an interoperable and flexible cloud platform that would enable heterogeneous workloads.

    Windows Azure is committed to openness across the entire application stack, with service APIs and service management APIs exposed as RESTful endpoints that can be used from any language or runtime, key services such as Caching, Service Bus, and Identity that can be hosted either on-premises or in the cloud, and open source SDKs for popular languages that give developers a choice of tools for building cloud-based applications and services.

    In this blog post I’ll recap some of the most important news of the last year in each of these areas. As I mentioned in a blog postearlier this year, when a journey reaches an important milestone it’s good to look back and think about the road so far. We’ve come even farther down that road now, and here are many technical examples of what has been accomplished.

    Data Portability

    When customers create data in an on-premises application, they have a high level of confidence that they have control over the data stored in the on-premise environment. Customers should have a comparable level of control over their data when they are using cloud platforms. Here are some examples of how Windows Azure supports Data Portability:

    Standards

    Cloud platforms should reuse existing and commonly used standards when it makes sense to do so. If existing standards are not sufficient, new standards may be created. Here are some of the ways we’re working to support standards for cloud computing:

    Ease of Migration and Deployment

    Cloud platforms should provide a secure migration path that preserves existing investments and enable co-existence between on-premise software and cloud services. Here are some examples of ease of migration and deployment on Windows Azure:

    Developer Choice

    Cloud platforms should enable developer choice in tools, languages and runtimes to facilitate the development of interoperable customer solutions. This approach will also broaden the community of developers that write for a given cloud platform and therefore enhance the quality of services that the platform will offer to customers. Here are some of the ways that Windows Azure is delivering on  developer choice:

    It’s exciting to see how far we’ve come, and we still have much to do as well. The Interoperability Elements of a Cloud Platform originally came out of discussions with customers, partners, and developers about what they need from an interoperable cloud, and we’re continuing those discussions going forward, and we will continue to deliver on these important elements!

    Gianugo Rabellino
    Senior Director, Open Source Communities
    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

  • Interoperability @ Microsoft

    Simplifying Big Data Interop – Apache Hadoop on Windows Server & Windows Azure

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    As a proud member of the Apache Software Foundation, it’s always great to see the growth and adoption of Apache community projects. The Apache Hadoop project is a prime example. Last year I blogged about how Microsoft was engaging with this vibrant community, Microsoft, Hadoop and Big Data. Today, I’m pleased to relay the news about increased interoperability capabilities for Apache Hadoop on the Windows Server and Windows Azure platforms and an expanded Microsoft partnership with Hortonworks.

    Microsoft Technical Fellow David Campbell announced today new previews of Windows Azure HDInsight Service and Microsoft HDInsight Server, the company’s Hadoop-based solutions for Windows Azure and Windows Server.

    Here’s what Dave had to say in the official news about how this partnership is simplifying big data in the enterprise.

    “Big Data should provide answers for business, not complexity for IT. Providing Hadoop compatibility on Windows Server and Azure dramatically lowers the barriers to setup and deployment and enables customers to pull insights from any data, any size, on-premises or in the cloud.”

    Dave also outlined how the Hortonworks partnership will give customers access to an enterprise-ready distribution of Hadoop with the newly released solutions.

    And here’s what Hortonworks CEO Rob Bearden said about this expanded Microsoft collaboration.

    “Hortonworks is the only provider of Apache Hadoop that ensures a 100% open source platform. Our expanded partnership with Microsoft empowers customers to build and deploy on platforms that are fully compatible with Apache Hadoop.”

    An interesting part of my open source community role at MS Open Tech is meeting with customers and trying to better understand their needs for interoperable solutions. Enhancing our products with new Interop capabilities helps reduce the cost and complexity of running mixed IT environments. Today’s news helps simplify deployment of Hadoop-based solutions and allows customers to use Microsoft business intelligence tools to extract insights from big data.

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