Microsoft Ireland Team Blog

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Watch the \\build\ Keynotes Live Online



    The future of computing is here and On September 13th at //build/ in Anaheim, CA we will be taking a look at what the future holds as we discuss the details of Windows 8.

    If you’re a developer interested in knowing more on the future of Windows, the Keynotes on Tuesday and Wednesday will be available live each day and sessions from the conference Tuesday through Friday will be available to view online within 24 hours of the session.

    Keynote Agenda:

    Tuesday Keynote 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM PST
    5:00 PM  to  7:30 PM GMT
    Wednesday Keynote 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM PST
    5:00 PM  to  7:00 PM GMT

    More Information on Windows 8

    Windows 8 Team blog

    Full announcement at The Official Microsoft Blog.

    avatar-body2  Will_Signiture

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Kinect for Windows: Creating next-gen interfaces (now scheduled for 6th September)


    Here's the event you've (& we've :)) all been waiting for - date changed to 6th September

    We have had an overwhelming interst in developing Kinect applications for Windows and we have already seen some really strong local examples too from the academic community. At reMIX Dublin we promised we would put together a half-day on this topic before the summer was over - so here it is!

    The format of this event will largely centre around shared learnings from teams and individuals who have experience of developing applications for Kinect both since the SDK beta was released, and prior to the release.

    The plan is to open the event with some context and direction from the local Microsost developer evangelists, taking a look at the power of Kinect with some of the more imaginative application examples we've seen from across the world. Then we ope to recruit some of the local developers who have some nice Kinect demos they can show off, along with sharing their learnings.

    Final agenda with speakers etc. tbc.

    Where: Microsoft Ireland Building 3, Carmanhall Road, Sandyford Industrial Estate, Dublin 18
    When: 2pm-5.30pm 6th September

    Register here.



  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Microsoft BizSpark Workshop in association with Dublin City University


    Accelerating Startup Growth

    This lunchtime event is the ideal opportunity for you to further develop your knowledge and skill set surrounding the Microsoft Azure platform, learning from both Microsoft professionals and existing customers, who will share some of their experiences.

    Networking with experts

    Amongst the speakers at this lunch time seminar will be Josh Holmes and Wilbour Craddock, both of whom are Architect Evangelists for Microsoft Ireland.  We will also have John Dennehy (Zartis) and Ciaran McGowan (Staff Balance) speaking on their BizSpark and Windows Azure personal experiences and the benefits the programme has delivered to their business.


    Date: July 28th, 2011

    Location: DCUBS, Dublin City University, Dublin 9

    12pm - Registration, light lunch & refreshments

    12.15pm - Speakers

    Wilbour Craddock - Architect Evangelist, Microsoft

    John Dennehy - Zartis

    Ciaran McGowan - Staff Balance

    Josh Holmes - Architect Evangelist, Microsoft

    1.45pm - Q&A followed by networking


    Register here.

    Follow the discussion about the event on LinkedIn: BizSpark Start-ups and Network Partners, Ireland/Northern Ireland

    Follow us on Twitter to get updated with this and other events: MSIrlTechEvents

    Hashtag for the event: #bizsparkworkshopdublin


  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Learn about the Future of Windows at BUILD


    Last month, attendees at the D8 Conference, saw the next generation of Windows demonstrated for the first time. Internally code-named “Windows 8”, the next OS from Microsoft is a reimagining of Windows, from the chip to the interface. A Windows 8-based PC is a new kind of device, one that scales from touch-only small screens through to large screens, with or without a keyboard and mouse.

    Microsoft’s Professional Developer Conference (PDC) is being replaced this year by a one-off developer event focused on Windows, BUILD. BUILD is taking place in Anaheim in California from September 13th to 16th and although registrations have only been open for a relatively short time, it is due to sell out within the next few days. If you are interested in learning about the future of Windows, then do not miss your opportunity and register right away!

     BUILD will show you that 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.

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    See the Future of the Web & Interaction at reMIX Dublin 11




    Register early for these free developer and UX seminars to avoid disappointment (running in Dublin on 9th June).


    Unplug from your day job. Be inspired at reMIX.

    reMIX Dublin brings you the best of Microsoft’s premier web & devices conference (MIX) at no cost to you. All you need to do is register and get yourself down to the RDS in Ballsbridge on June 9th!

    Join the conversation at reMIX Dublin – see the latest tools and technologies and draw inspiration from a professional community of your peers and experts.



     MIX is where you’ll learn about the future of web, from the diversity of devices and interaction models on the front-end, to the tools and technologies that power the user experience, to the services that make it all possible.


    MIX isn’t just about getting a first look at the latest technologies and trends – it’s an opportunity for you to have your questions answered by industry and Microsoft experts.




    Register for this free event.


     See you there!




  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Hands-on SharePoint 2010 Developer Training


    This is a heads up to any .NET developers that are looking to skill-up on Sharepoint 2010.

    Monday 11th April to Thursday 14th April 2011
    €750 per seat
    Email with any questions regarding registration and logistics.

    This is a four day developer course which will be delivered by
    Combined Knowledge. This is a local redelivery of their acclaimed SharePoint 2010 developer track and is primarily aimed at .Net developers who wish to learn SharePoint 2010.  The full course syllabus is available here:

    The following are the main components of the course:

    ·         Visual studio 2010 SharePoint Tools

    ·         Application Lifecycle Management (ALM)

    ·         Farm and Sandboxed Solutions

    ·         Server and Client Object Models (.NET, Silverlight and JavaScript)

    ·         Authentication and Membership Providers

    ·         Master Pages, Branding, Themes, CSS, and JavaScript

    ·         The Fluent User Interface (AKA The Ribbon) and Custom Navigation

    ·         OOB Webparts, XLV Webpart, and Custom Web Parts

    ·         Business Connectivity Services (BCS)

    ·         LINQ to SharePoint

    ·         ADO.NET Data Services (REST)

    ·         PowerShell for SharePoint Foundation 2010

    ·         Web Services and WCF

    ·         Field Types and Field Controls

    ·         Timer Jobs

    ·         Event Receivers and Feature Callouts

    ·         Site and List Workflow

    ·         Mobile Applications

    ·         SharePoint Foundation 2010 Developer Dashboard

    ·         Change Log, Usage Log, Auditing and Unified Logging Service (ULS)

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Internet Explorer 9: Get It Now!


    post via Joey deVilla @ in the Canadian MSDN team.

    Two things happened on Monday:

    1. Pi Day 2011 -- March 14th, or 3.14.2011 – took place. I celebrated by calculating the circumference of a circle with a radius of one.
    2. Internet Explorer 9 was released!

    You played a vital part of the process of getting IE9 up and running. Unlike previous versions of the browser, IE9 was made available to the public quite early with the Platform Previews, which were made available quite early: almost a year before launch. About every 8 weeks, we put out a new Platform Preview of IE9 for you to try, stress-test and develop for, and we took your feedback with each one. We got truckloads of suggestions, comments, kudos, complaints and bug reports, and IE9 is a better browser because of your input. For your help, we thank you – IE9 isn’t IE9 without you.

    Before I continue, may I suggest that you get your hands on IE9?

    Click here to download IE9 now!

    There were four major goals in building IE9. The browser had to be…

    Yellow Lamborghini Countach

    Fast. The browser isn’t just a document-viewing application any more; it’s a full-on platform for applications of all sorts. As Jeff “Coding Horror/Stack Overflow” Atwood puts it, all programming is web programming. JavaScript is now the most important programming language in the world, and IE9’s got Chakra, a brand new JavaScript engine that runs like snakes on ice.

    While JavaScript speed is important, it’s not the only contributing factor. There’s also page, graphics, SVG and Canvas rendering, and IE9 does that well too, thanks to hardware acceleration. If you need proof, go play Pirates Love Daisies on IE9 and then on the Esteemed Competition’s browsers.

    Toothbrush resting on a mug

    Clean. The browser should be like the perfect English butler – doing its job, but staying out of the way as much as possible at the same time. IE9 provides as little user interface as possible so your screen real estate is all about the sites and applications you’re using, and the taskbar integration through pinning and jump lists mean that using web apps feels more like using desktop apps.

    Honest-looking dachsund

    Trusted. Let’s face it; the web is full of jerks (I might even be one of them). But seriously: malware and phishing are profitable criminal activities and while most sites are on the up-and-up, there are some that are out to get you, whether it’s to hijack your computer to run a botnet or con you into handing over valuable banking information. Between Microsoft’s secure development practices (you would’ve laughed at that idea a few years ago, but now the Security Development Lifecycle gets mucho respect) and features like SmartScreen and Tracking Protection, IE9’s got you covered.

    Various adpater plugs

    Interoperable. As in “plays well with others”. HTML5, CSS3 and all the goodies you’ve come to expect from a browser but wish earlier versions of IE had. The phrase that’s been bandied about at Microsoft is “same markup”, and that means that the HTML5/CSS3/JavaScript that you wrote should work on IE9 just as well as it does on Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera and what-have-you.

    It’s great, it’s out and it should be on your computer. Go get IE9 now!

    Click here to download IE9 now!

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Upcoming Windows Phone 7 Deployment Labs


    If you’re working on Windows Phone 7 applications, you’d probably love to be able to deploy and test your app on a shiny, Windows 7 phone.  I have three upcoming opportunities for you to do so:

    * Irish Open Spaces Coding Day:
    Andrea from has put together the third Irish Open Space Coding Day on this coming Saturday, September 11th from 11am at the Enterprise Ireland Offices in Clontarf. Register here.  I’m sending along a couple of phones for people to test out their apps on.

    * Windows Phone 7 Deployment Lab (Sandyford):
    Lab session in the Microsoft offices in Sandyford Industrial Estate.  You’re welcome to drop by from 9am-4pm to test out your app.  Please bring either your .xap file or your laptop with your application/game on it and we will test it and video it so that you get some feedback on how it works on a device.
    - Wednesday September 15th 9am-4pm
    - Thursday September 23rd 9am-4pm

    If you’d like to attend one of our deployment labs, please drop me an e-mail beforehand at martharo @ or send me a message on Twitter at to let me know what time so that we can expect you and give you directions.  Our offices are an easy 3 minute walk from the Sandyford Luas stop inside Sandyford Industrial Estate.

    I don’t have quite the setup that the UK team does Smile but my colleague Dave Northey and I will get your app up and running on a phone and help you to debug any issues you’ve run into. 

    See you at an upcoming Deployment Lab!

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Building Windows Phone 7 Apps? Head to Irish Open Spaces Coding Day!


    Related to my previous post, I wanted to mention that if you’re building Windows Phone 7 apps, there will be phones available to use and deploy on at Irish Open Spaces Coding Day on September 11th at the Enterprise Ireland offices in Dublin.  You’ll need to bring your own laptop and your app ready to deploy and test.  Putting your app on SkyDrive, DropBox or a USB key is a good backup and will help make the deployment easier.

    There’s more information at, and you can register your attendance here.

    To find out more about events like this, follow

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Windows Phone 7 Developer Event


    ALT.NET Last night ALT.NET and Dublin MTUG held a joint event in the Radisson Blu hotel in Dublin city centre to show off Windows Phone 7 and talk about building applications and games.

    Despite being serenaded by an ice cream truck, deafened by alarm sirens and evacuated from the building due to the faulty alarm, I think the evening went fairly well!  There were some fantastic questions which I’m working on getting answered for folks.

    I’ve received several e-mails today asking about the content we didn’t cover due to the evacuation.  What we didn’t get to cover before we were so kindly evacuated basically consisted of three things: 1) Building applications using Expression Blend (instead of Visual Studio), 2) How to get your app deployed and/or tested (in other words, “I NEED A PHONE!”), and 3) How to make money building apps in the next month.

    I’d like to do a short video on this, but in the interest of time I’m pointing you towards some other folks’ material:

    Phones are in short supply, there’s no way around it.  Today you have three options.  You can:

    1. Send me your app to deploy.  E-mail me the .XAP file, send me a link to a Dropbox folder or Skydrive folder, point me to a public share, whatever you have.  I will deploy your app onto a phone here, video it & send you a link to the video so that you can see the functionality and how it looks and behaves.
    2. Attend a deployment lab.  Keep an eye on this blog – I’ll shortly be announcing several dates in September where we’ll be standing by with phones for you to test.  You can simply e-mail me or send me a message on Twitter to let me know you’ll be attending.  Bring your code & your own laptop and we’ll deploy your app to a phone for you to test.
    3. Request a phone.  If your app really needs a lot of testing, e-mail me and let me know what you’re working on and when you’ll be ready for a phone.  I can loan them out for a couple of days, but the requirement is that if you borrow a phone, you’re committing to having an app built for the Windows Phone 7 launch in mid October.  It may sound harsh, but as I said phones are in short supply so this is how we’re trying to reward developers who are building great apps at the moment.

    Glad you asked!  We’re shortly launching an app contest for developers in Ireland & Northern Ireland with prizes including cash, Xboxes, and more!  Again, keep an eye on this blog and we’ll have more on this in the next couple of days.

    My slides are below if you’re interested, and I’ve also included several links which would be of interest to individuals building apps for Windows Phone 7.  Tomorrow I’ll post answers to the questions, and in the meantime if you have any other ones please leave a comment or e-mail me. 

    Windows Phone 7 Slides:

    Windows Phone 7 Links for Developers:

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Where’s the DPE Team?


    Every year, my team spends the month of June pretty much in hiding.  It’s not that we don’t like you, we just have to take some “us time.” Microsoft Ireland DPE

    Our fiscal year ends on June 30th, so we spend June looking at how we’ve done for the year. 

    • Did we reach our goals? 
    • Did we run into challenges? 
    • Did we grow? 
    • Were we ambitious enough? 
    • Did we get the results we wanted for the time and money we invested? 
    • Were we able to change things proactively or did we just react?

    Once we’ve done a pretty thorough job of evaluating how everything went, we start examining our goals for the next fiscal year, which started yesterday. 

    • What are our focus areas? 
    • Where are we going to invest time and money? 
    • What technology & products are coming down the line that we need to be ready for? 
    • Is there training we’ll need to do our jobs this year? 
    • In what areas can we really innovate and do things that will make the rest of the world sit up and notice the Irish tech community?

    The sun is shining in Dublin, our reviews are done, and we’re full of ideas and plans for an exciting and challenging new year.  So, hi!  We’re back! 

    Microsoft Ireland DPE

    See you around Ireland and Northern Ireland soon!

    *P.S. you can blame me for the terrible job I did Photoshopping the team picture above – it’s very difficult to get all of us in the same room at the same time!*

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Windows Phone 7 Developer Hub Comes to Dublin


    I’m delighted to announce that the team behind Windows Phone 7 is visiting Dublin on June 3rd to conduct a free developer workshop.  The workshop will cover building applications for Windows Phone 7 in both Silverlight & XNA.

    Windows Phone 7

    Here’s an overview of the event – you can register now at

    Date:  Thursday, June 3, 2010
    Time: 9:30 AM – 5:00 PM
         Westbury Hotel
         Grafton Street
         Dublin 2
    Level: 200-300
    Language: English
    Audience: Any developer interested in creating for a brand-new Phone marketplace


    Join us to learn about the exciting new Windows Phone 7 developer platform!  Windows Phone 7 will open up a host of new application and multi-screen development opportunities, and this briefing will give you a jumpstart in understanding how to take advantage of them.

    • Keynote
    • Windows Phone Programming with Silverlight. 

    o Platform and the tools
    o Introduction to the Application Model
    o Input Modes and device features: touch, accelerometer, camera, and GPS
    o Push Notifications
         - XNA programming for Windows Phone.  
    o Introduction to XNA
    o Platform and the tools
    o Performance advise for game and application development on Windows Phone
    o Getting started with the platform.
         - Design and coding advice for your Windows Phone application.
         - Marketplace
         - Q & A

    Development would require

    • Good understanding of C# and .NET development
    • Silverlight application development experience is a plus (if writing a Silverlight app)
    • XNA application development experience is a plus (if you are writing a game in XNA)

    We’re lucky in Ireland to have Ben Riga & Yochay Kiriaty join us from the team in Redmond.

    Ben Riga
    Ben Riga is Senior Technical Evangelist for Windows Phone 7 in Microsoft's Developer and Platform  Evangelism (DPE) group.  His responsibilities include demonstrating the compelling business value of the Windows Phone platform and how it extends the Microsoft stack to the device to help customers and ISVs to more quickly deliver mobile applications.  Ben supports the Microsoft field by engaging in key projects, recruiting target customers/partners, engaging customers and partners with feedback and managing the all-up engagement pipeline.

    Yochay Kiriaty
    Yochay Kiriaty is a Senior Technical Evangelist at Microsoft, focusing on Windows Phone 7 and Windows 7. He has more than a decade of experience in Software development and management. He has written and taught academic Computer Science courses in several universities. He is the public face of the Windows 7 Developers Blog, written number of MSDN articles, and co-authored the Introduction to Windows 7 for Developers and Learning Windows Phone books.

    Register today at – see you Thursday June 3rd!

  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Jesse Liberty Visiting Ireland and Northern Ireland


    We’ve had such amazing visiting speakers lately, and joining us shortly is Jesse Liberty, self-confirmed Silverlight Geek.

    Jesse is visiting Dublin, Belfast and Cork to talk about Silverlight development, and as Jesse has created a lot of the training content on, you won’t get a more seasoned Silverlight expert!

    image of Jesse Liberty

    Jesse works for Scott Guthrie, another recent visitor to Ireland, and he is a senior program manager at Microsoft responsible for creating tutorials, videos, web casts, and lots of other content to help developers learn and understand Silverlight and how to build great Silverlight applications.

    You can catch Jesse at the following spots – be sure to register by following the links below:

    DUBLIN – Wednesday, April 21st at 19:30
    BELFAST – Thursday, April 22nd at 19:30
    CORK – Friday, April 23rd at 16:00

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Visual Studio 2010 Launch Events – Ireland & Northern Ireland


    Many of you have already received e-mail invites from us or from community organizations about the Visual Studio 2010 Launch events here in Ireland and Northern Ireland, so this is just a quick update about the events.

    We have a few prizes for folks who attend the events and folks who download VS2010 – details below on how to win a Zune HD or an Xbox360 Elite!

    MSDN Flash Ireland Newsletter - Special VS2010 Launch Edition!

    Visual Studio 2010 and .NET 4 arrive April 12th, and we have a lot to celebrate for this release. New capabilities, a great new IDE based on Windows Presentation Foundation, extensible code editor, rich visualizations and much more. To celebrate we're hosting four events around Ireland and Northern Ireland with fantastic speakers, technical content and of course some super giveaways as well.

    All VS2010 Launch events are now open for registration. Register for the event nearest you:

    - Dublin: April 12th from 17:30 at NCI
    - Belfast: April 13th from 17:30 at Wellington Park
    - Galway: April 20th from 17:30 at GMIT
    - Cork: April 21st from 17:30 at Maryborough Hotel

    Speaker for Irish Visual Studio 2010 launch events include Martin Woodward, Brian Keller, Bob Duffy, Shane O'Sullivan and more! These experts will be covering everything from the guts of Visual Studio 2010 to the new test capabilities, SharePoint development and Windows Phone 7 development. Don't miss this exclusive chance to see demonstrations of the new features and capabilities of VS2010 that will make your development easier and you more productive. Attendees also have the chance to win an Xbox360 Elite at each individual event, so don't miss your chance and register today!

    For those early adopters who have already downloaded VS2010 and for those enthusiasts who want to download VS2010 and kick the tires, we have a special contest. Reply to me and tell me the answer to this question:

    If I go to File->New Project and select Visual C#, I can create applications for Web, Windows, Cloud Service or Silverlight. Can you name five of the different types of Visual C# Web projects I can create in Visual Studio?

    If you know the answer, e-mail me back at by 11:59pm Sunday April 11th. I will draw a winner at random from the right answers to win a Zune HD on Monday April 12th!

    If you haven't downloaded VS2010 yet, you can do that here: Download Visual Studio 2010 and .NET framework 4 Release Candidate
    Download the Release Candidate and begin investigating the new capabilities, including new testing options, enhancements to the integrated development environment, built-in tools for Windows 7 and Microsoft SharePoint 2010, new drag-and-drop bindings for Silverlight and Windows Presentation Foundation, and much more.

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Stay Up-To-Date with Microsoft Tech Events


    I get a lot of feedback from people that they have a hard time finding out about various tech events in Ireland & Northern Ireland.  For Microsoft developers, we have,, and a variety of other sources for tech events news.

    So I put together a Twitter alias for Microsoft tech events.  You can follow us at to stay up to date with events, training and other announcements.  Hope that helps!

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Joint Enterprise Ireland-Microsoft Event, ‘Succeeding in the US Market – Best Practices for Software Companies’, 23rd March 2010



    Following the recent BizSpark Camp event, I want to keep you informed of other interesting events and resources, helping foster growth in Irish technology firms.

    Microsoft Ireland are supporting BizSpark Network Partner, Enterprise Ireland, with an event focusing on tips and best practices helping Irish technology firms to succeed in the US Market.

    Learn more here:


    The latest, and one of the most important joint Microsoft – EI events, is Paul Solski’s visit to Ireland. It will be useful for existing Microsoft Partners and companies partnering with other vendors both in the US and other key export markets. There will be a public event ‘Succeeding in the US Market – Best Practices for Software Companies’, 23rd March 2010 at Enterprise Ireland, Eastpoint , Dublin.

    Paul Solski is the Managing Director of The OpenBorders Group in North America. Together with The OpenBorders Group executive partners in Germany and the UK, he build Microsoft’s Open Borders Program which helps Microsoft ISVs expand internationally.

    This event is more targeted at established technology firms, rather than start-ups. Do check it out though and sign it up if you think your business could benefit from tips and best practices for Software Companies striving to succeed in US Market.


    Cross posted from Ronan's blog
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    WordCamp Ireland 2010


    Just a quick post as I’ve gotten several e-mails asking for my WordCamp Ireland slides.

    The slides can be downloaded here:

    My talk was “Free Tools for WordPress Sites”, and I covered several free tools people can download to help improve their blogs and websites.

    A fantastic suggestion by my colleague Josh Holmes, who came down to Kilkenny after a staggering 16-day tour of Europe talking to developers, was to do short video clips of each tool.  I realized that the audience was quite broad so not everyone has the same background, and some of the tools are more complex than others.

    I will try to come back to this, but as I’m in Las Vegas this week with not much free time, it maWindows Live Writery take me a bit, so here’s the short version:

    1) Windows Live Writer – 

    Hands down my favourite blogging tool.  Windows Live Writer lets you work offline, store drafts, easily add images/media and other content.  It’s easy to use with several blogs, whether they’re WordPress or other formats. 

    2) Internet Explorer 8 WordPress Accelerator -

    Gives you the ability to select text in the browser, right-click it, and upload easily to your blog.  Great for things like tumblr blogs and others where you want the content up quickly.

    3) Expression Web 3 SuperPreview - 

    Allows you to look at your content rendered in several browsers, side-by-side or transparently on top of each other.  Helps take the pain out of CSS nightmares, missing images or media, and other browser compatibility issues.

    4) SEO Toolkit -

    Take an in-depth look at the SEO of your site: do you have broken links, missing ALT text, other errors that are leading to your SEO being less than great?  SEO Toolkit analyzes your site & gives you a comprehensive report of issues and warnings you can fix to improve your site’s search engine optimisation.

    Web PlatformInstaller

    5) Web Platform Installer -

    The Web Platform Installer is an application that lets you grab a wide variety of frameworks and tools for your desktop and your applications.  Use it to download WordPress, PHP, tools, databases, and everything else you need to build a great website or application.

    6) Web Apps Gallery -

    The Web Apps Gallery has a collection of applications you can download and immediately deploy like DotNetNuke, Umbraco CMS, photo galleries and much more.  And hey, if you’ve got a cool application you’d like listed, submit it here for inclusion in the gallery, too.

    7) Go to MIX – MIX10.  Love Fest.

    I’ve been raving about MIX non-stop for months now.  It’s not free, but watching the sessions online afterwards is.  MIX is where you’ll find out about new web technology, new applications, new support and new programs for developers and designers and everyone else obsessed with the web.

    8) Join WebsiteSpark –

    WebsiteSpark is a program for designers and developers who build applications or websites as a service for others.  This 3-year program gives you access to free tools, licenses, support and a network to help you find other customers.  (It’s almost free, you pay a $100 exit fee when you leave the program.)

    pptPlexHope you enjoyed the event!  I met some fabulous people, learned a heck of a lot and can’t wait to do it again next year. 

    p.s. A handful of people asked me what I was using for my slides.  It’s a PowerPoint plug-in called pptPlex  built by officelabs.  pptPlex allows you to create cool, zoomable navigation interfaces for your slides.  It’s similar to prezi.

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Live At MIX10


    If you’ve seen me at all in the last few weeks, I’ve probably been gushing about MIX10.  Now in its fifth year, MIX is the Microsoft event I’ve been dying to go to, year after year.

    And now I’m here, in Las Vegas.  And MIX10 starts in around 48 hours.  image  

    If you’re here, too, great – let me know so I can get you on the invite to the Irish attendees St. Patrick’s Day party (I’m aware that it’s a bit strange letting the American plan the Irish holiday, but ah well).  You’ll also be getting exclusive access to SDKs, great swag and probably the most valuable thing of all: the chance to meet and talk to lots of developer and designer superstars, speakers, product groups and more. 

    If you’re not here, there are plenty of ways to get all of the MIX10 content, announcements and excitement.

    KEYNOTES: From 9am Pacific Time (GMT – 8 hours) on Monday March 15th and Tuesday March 16th, you can watch the keynote live featuring Scott Guthrie, Joe Belfiore, Dean Hachamovitch, Doug Purdy and Bill Buxton here:

    INTERVIEWS: Channel9 will be making the rounds talking with keynote speakers, attendees, product groups and more.  They’ll be streaming live all day and you can find their schedule here:

    ASK QUESTIONS: Just because you’re not here doesn’t mean you can’t ask your own questions.  Submit questions for Channel9 to them live on Twitter:

    MAKE ME WORK: I confess, a bonus part of my job in coming here is that I have the opportunity in person to entice experts, speakers, developers, designers and more to come visit us in Ireland.  Is there someone you’d like to have visit?  Or a question you’d like the answer to about product road maps, etc?  I’m your virtual attendee.  Let me know how I can help.

    CATCH UP AFTERWARDS: One of my favourite things about MIX has been the way they share content for all the sessions afterwards.  This is *the best* way to watch a conference if you can’t be there in person.  So take a look through the sessions after they’re posted to and learn more about what was presented here.

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Spark Programs: BizSpark versus WebsiteSpark


    Thanks to everyone who came along to our BizSpark Camp event last week at the Radisson.  The feedback from the sessions and the PitchSlam event was fantastic, so we really appreciate everyone’s support!

    After the event, I received an absolute *flood* of BizSpark applications from new companies, which is great.  However after going through the applications, many of them were ineligible or better suited for WebsiteSpark.  So I wanted to do a quick comparison of the two, as it seems it’s not incredibly clear which program is right for certain companies.

      versus image










    Startup Product Companies (ie not services companies doing works for hire)

    · Building a software product which multiple customers will use.

    · Private (non-listed)

    · Less than three years old

    · Less than $1M in revenue (there are a small number of local variants of this limit)

    Tools and production licenses.

    · For Tools, the offer is very similar to MSDN Premium, for up to 25 developers (more on request)

    · Production licenses allow unlimited use of Windows, SQL, Systems Center and BizTalk servers to put the application into production

    2 phone support  incidents per company

    Discounted hosting services from hosting partners

    3 years

    $100 at exit

    The offer can be made directly via Microsoft employees or by approximately 1,700 “Network Partners”. Network Partners are organizations who work closely with startups, and includes government agencies, incubators, banks, VCs, Angel organizations, etc.


    Website developers and designers – companies building websites

    10 employees or less.  In the business of building websites.

    Tools (expression, Vs Pro) and production licenses of SQL Web and WS Web 2008. Up to 3 developers per company.

    2 phone support  incidents per company

    Discounted hosting services from hosting partners

    3 years

    $100 at exit

    Network partners are: Hosters (mainly) and government agencies, Web Pro and designer associations, etc..


    For more information on BizSpark (and to sign up as either a startup or network partner), please go to

    For more information on WebsiteSpark (and to sign up as either a startup or network partner), please go to

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    BizSparkCamp Dublin – March 8th


    image Everything is locked and loaded for BizSparkCamp Dublin on March 8th at the Radisson Hotel on Golden Lane.

    As part of the local BizSpark programme, Microsoft Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and TechLudd are delighted to announce BizSparkCamp 2010 featuring Innovate! PitchSlam – an event designed to help accelerate Irish Startups’ businesses and provide the opportunity to be identified as one of the world’s most promising technology start-ups. This day-long conference will run on Monday, March 8th (doors open 9am) in the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel in Dublin’s city centre. Entrance is free of charge.

    Register here:

    BizSparkCamp Sessions/Speakers include:

    • Julie Sinnamon and Colm MacFhionnlaoich from Enterprise Ireland will be providing advice for getting access to funding and new markets (UK, US and further abroad).
    • Brian Caulfield will be joining us once again to give some key insights into the local VC landscape with tips on how to maximise your chances of securing VC funding. He will be joined by Shay Garvery from Delta Partners and Diane Roberts from HBAN.
    • Mike Sigal from early stage analyst firm Guidewire Group, organisers of Innovate!, will be giving an overview of the Guidewire Group’s G/Score Assessment Methodology, an analytical tool to help you understand your competitive strength and market position.
    • Caroline Egan and Nigel Turner from The Open Borders Group have worked with many Irish companies helping them to enter the UK market and partner successfully with the Microsoft UK channel. They will speaking on how to expand your business internationally and the best ways to build partner strategies.
    • Through the new BizSpark EUGA program, Microsoft Ireland are providing support for BizSpark companies interested in accessing local and EU grants, providing a facilitated application process to make applying for these funds easier.  Grants covered by EGUA include ICT infrastructure, training, R&D and recruitment. Nicky Martin from Affect Network will be covering how BizSpark can help you access these grants.
    • Caelen King (RevaHealth), Ray Nolan (, Aidan Gallagher (InishTech), Alan Coleman (, Ciaran Dynes (Progress Software), Siofra Flood (Legal Consultant) and Brian Moroney (Mercatus) will all be sharing their stories from the trenches and giving their best advice on how to access capital and new markets in today’s challenging climate.


    Innovate!100 PitchSlam

    In addition to the planned BizSpark sessions, we have invited local Bizspark companies to participate in Innovate!2010 – a global competition to identify and accelerate the Innovate!100: The World’s 100 Most Promising Technology, Media, and Telecommunications Startups. Microsoft BizSpark has partnered with early stage analyst firm Guidewire Group to bring you opportunities for expert feedback & validation, global exposure, cash and in-kind prizes, qualified introductions to potential partners and investors, and the possibility of being named one of the Innovate!100: The World’s 100 Most Promising Startups.


    The schedule is below – it’s a very full day, followed by a drinks reception in the evening.



    Track 1 - Access to Capital

    Track 2 - Access to Markets






    Welcome and Introduction
    Cliff Reeves - Microsoft Global GM, Entrepreneur Community



    Room Change



    EI Funding & Best Practices
    Julie Sinnamon - Executive Director, Global Business Development, Enterprise Ireland

    Stories from the trenches - Breaking into New Markets with Web Business Models
    Caelen King - CEO RevaHealth



    EUGA - BizSpark Service to help Startups get grants
    Nicky Martin - Affect Network

    Stories from the trenches - The new opportunities with SaaS
    Aidan Gallagher - CEO Inishtech






    Stories from the trenches - Best Practices for Getting Funded
    Brian Caulfield

    Building effective partner strategies and routes to market
    Caroline Egan -  The Open Borders Group



    Stories from the trenches - Saving Time and Money on Due Dilligence
    Siofra Flood - Legal Consultant

    International Expansion - Best Practices
    Nigel Turner - The Open Borders Group



    Stories from the trenches - Get the 'boring stuff' right!
    Brian Moroney - CEO Mercatus

    Stories from the trenches - Operating Abroad (From Product Development to Sales)
    Alan Coleman -






    Your G-Score & BizSpark Exchange - Maximise your chances of getting funding from BizSpark VC Network Partners
    Mike Sigal - Founder and CEO of The Guidewire Group

    Stories from the trenches - Accessing New Markets
    Ray Nolan - Founder of



    Panel Discussion - Entering new markets
    Ray Nolan, Colm MacFhionnlaoich (EI), Ciaran Dynes (Progress Software), Caroline Egan (TOBG)






    Panel Discussion - Best bets for Funding in Today's Economic Climate
    Shay Garvey (Delta Group); Diane Roberts (HBAN), Brian Caulfield,  Caelen King, (RevaHealth)



    PitchSlam Set-up



    PitchSlam (1)






    PitchSlam (2)




    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Zune HD Touch Programming with XNA


    Even though I’m in love with my Zune 120, when I learned that I could be writing multi-touch games in XNAZune HD for the Zune HD, it didn’t take much to convince me (the recent price drop plus Bing cash back helped, too).  I probably would have bought one even sooner if the Newark airport had them in their handy little Best Buy vending machines.

    I picked up a 32gb Zune HD last week when I was in the US, and even I am shocked at how beautiful this device is.  The touch screen is very responsive and the display simply amazing.  Just like my previous two devices, it does great synching with my music, videos, audio books, pictures and podcasts, it has a radio, and it lets me wirelessly beam songs to friends.  And now it also has wireless, marketplace access, internet, apps and a handy 33 hours of battery life. 

    Downside? 32 gigs does not seem like much space to me; I listen to and watch a lot of podcasts as well as audio books, and I am voracious with music.  I hope the next version will have more storage.  Not that I need another one any time soon, but I will admit I was a bit jealous of a friend’s slick Zune Originals design!

    Just like with previous Zunes, this can connect to my laptop so I can deploy XNA games I create myself.  The XNA 3.1 release last Fall included some new APIs for multi-touch and accelerometer.  You can read more about the 3.1 Zune extensions here on the XNA Team Blog.

    This weekend I played around with some of the new APIs in an attempt to get Pong up and running on my Zune HD.  I’m going to wrap this into a three-part series of posts from start-to-finish, including prototyping my game in SketchFlow.

    Want a sneak peak?  Here’s the game so far on my laptop:

    XNA Pong

    and here’s the game running on my Zune HD:

     Pong on Zune HD

    Anything you’re dying to know about writing touch games with XNA 3.1?  I will try and make sure I cover it in my series.

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    National Library – More Kudos from Komplett and Others


    The “Discover Your National Library” exhibit I blogged about here has now been on display for over a month, and it’s getting some serious attention from people all over.

    A couple of weeks ago, I noticed it hit the front page (!) which is the first Irish application to do so. 

    Discover Your National Library

    Additionally the good guys from Komplett ventured down to Kildare Street for some culture and posted a great review over on their site called “The Nation’s Memory Digitised.”  JJ Worall interviewed Assistant Keeper Elizabeth Kirwan and myself about the motivation behind the project and the technology involved.  The article is a really nice insight into the content of the exhibition and the long-term effects of digitising our valuable archives. 


    If you haven’t been down to 2-3 Kildare Street yet to see the Surface tables and the exhibition itself, what are you waiting for?

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Windows Phone 7 Series – Free Dev Tools and Support for MIX attendees


    I know we’ve all been calling it the Zune Phone for a while now, but whatever it is it’s public news and it’s gorgeous. 

    Windows Phone 7 Series

    I’ve been getting a few questions about writing applications for it, so I thought I’d throw this out there.  MIX is traditionally a conference for web developers and designers, but they’ve added a ton of sessions for people who want their applications to go even more places and reach even more people.

    MIX10 for Windows Phone 7 Series

    Here’s a small blurb about what to expect from the MIX10 Windows Phone sessions:

    Everything you could ever want to know about Windows Phone 7 Series is at MIX10. You’ll preview the new development platform, show you how to work with the Windows Phone 7 Series development tools, and give you a tour of the Windows Phone Marketplace. All MIX10 attendees will receive access to the Windows Phone 7 Series development tools and have access to a dedicated track on the Windows Phone 7 Series platform that runs throughout the event. MIX10 attendees will also receive exclusive free developer support for the Windows Phone 7 Series development tools. Don’t miss this unique opportunity -attend MIX10.

    See you at MIX10!

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Visiting Dublin – Josh Holmes!


    About a year and a half ago, Josh Holmes visited Dublin from the US on a whirlwind tour of Europe to talk withJosh Holmes developers about rich, interactive applications.  Josh spoke with developers from all over Ireland and from all different backgrounds.  He’s a great speaker and a fun, down-to-earth guy who really “gets it.”  I like hearing Josh speak because he’s quite agnostic and isn’t afraid to tell it like it is.

    Josh loved Ireland so much (it’s true – he even calls out Ireland specifically in his blog entry!) that he’s coming back next week.  This time, he is talking about PHP and Ruby on Azure.  If you’re building applications in scripted or dynamic languages and you’re thinking about doing anything with cloud hosting, you need to be here on Sunday night.

    WHO: Developers and those in the tech industry building cool, cutting-edge applications
    WHEN: Sunday night, February 21st from 7:30pm
    WHERE: The Radisson Blu Royal (formerly Radisson SAS, the one on Golden Lane) in Dublin city centre

    Like any good developer meetup, we’ll have free drinks after in the Radisson and of course some nice giveaways as well (Zune anyone?).  Dublin is lucky that we get Josh on his first night of his epic two-week tour, so he’ll be all refreshed and ready to take on your heckling. :)

    Registration is open now, so don’t miss your chance to meet Josh and other great developers, have a few drinks on us, and learn everything there is to know about hosting your applications in the cloud.

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
  • Microsoft Ireland Blog

    Discover Your National Library – Launched at the National Library and Online


    Maryann Jardine and I checking out the Surface


    On Wednesday January 20th, the National Library launched a brand new exhibition on Kildare Street called “Discover Your National Library.”  It’s a fantastic exhibit, not just because of the wealth of the collection of rare books, manuscripts, photographs, prints and drawings, but also because the experience can also be enjoyed online!


    Check out to see this brand new application, developed by one of Ireland’s most creative Microsoft Surfacecompanies, Martello Students playing with the new Surface applicationMedia.  Martello Media met with me last year about their interest in possibly creating a Surface application for this project.  They loved the technology and decided to bring that in as part of the exhibit.  The project grew  to include an online presence, and with the touch technology in Silverlight 3, Martello Media decided to use that to build the online application, using Deep Zoom to show off the items in the collection at a very high resolution and to allow for easy sorting and searching using metadata.

    Maryann Jardine (a student of the original Silverlight Jumpstart course!) developed the application at Martello Media, and she did an absolutely stunning job.  Both Martello Media and the National Library are very much to thank for their innovative approach to online museum archival, and I couldn’t be more excited that this learning experience is now available for audiences all over the world.  I Zúmáil / Zoomhope this inspires more organizations to think creatively about the possibilities online and digital preservation here in Ireland.

    The Surface tables deployed at the National Library are the first in Ireland.  To see them for yourself in person, visit the National Library’s new exhibition at 2-3 Kildare Street in Dublin city centre.  To see the Silverlight application online, go visit  And you, too, can learn how to say “Zoom” in Irish!

    Cross posted from Martha's Blog.
Page 1 of 15 (366 items) 12345»