Jerry Nixon

Microsoft Developer Evangelist

Posts
  • Jerry Nixon

    Hey IT Pros! What developers already know about Windows 8

    Remember how Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan ended? Spock saved the Enterprise but died from radiation exposure. Fortunately, Spock mind-melded with Bones before his famous “I am and always will be your friend”. That’s how Kirk restored Spock’s Genesis...
  • Jerry Nixon

    SQL Express v LocalDB v SQL Compact Edition

    LocalDB is created specifically for developers. It is very easy to install and requires no management, yet it offers the same T-SQL language, programming surface and client-side providers as the regular SQL Server Express. In effect the developers that...
  • Jerry Nixon

    At last, C# is getting “?.”, sometimes called the Safe Navigation Operator

    Visual Studio (and many other Microsoft Products) uses http://UserVoice.com as a feedback mechanism for users to suggest and vote on product features. One of the most popular features, with 3,752 votes, a new “?.” operator for the C# language, sometimes...
  • Jerry Nixon

    XAML Binding Basics 101

    imageHello Windows 8 XAML developer. XAML is a declarative UI language; it's most powerful feature is surely data binding.  But, I admit, with such power comes a lot of things to know. Let’s take a minute to step back, smell the roses, and build out some simple bindings.

    Read to learn?

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  • Jerry Nixon

    What web developers need to know about IE10 compatibility

    imageNew browsers introduce new ways of thinking. IE10 is no different. There are compatibility concerns to make your site look awesome everywhere. So where do you start to learn about this stuff? How about right here!

    Compat Inspector

    Compat Inspector is a JavaScript-based testing tool that analyzes your site while it runs. Compat Inspector watches for patterns of interaction known to cause issues and reports them automatically. This allows you to identify problems quickly without first memorizing a bunch of documentation. See this page to learn how to use it.

    To help demonstrate Compat Inspector, known compatibility patterns have been introduced into the tooltip script used for this page. Use Compat Inspector to learn about the issues present in the tooltips above. Just click on the Compat Inspector widget in the upper right-hand corner of the page to get started.

    For a given reported issue, check the "Verify" checkbox and refresh the page to temporarily simulate the expected behavior. Focus on one issue at a time. Although you can "Verify" multiple issues at once, typically only one represents the root cause of the problem. Continue this process until the tooltips start working correctly. After that, take a look at the patched version of the tooltip script.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    C++ for C# Developers

    C++ is an uncontested tool for delivering innovation outside the box (augmented reality, natural user interfaces, compelling games, and more). But how to reconnect with C++ using our C# background as starting point? This is a somewhat short guide to the...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Ready to learn XAML?

    Daren May and I teach the basics of Windows 8 XAML in a Jump Start course for Microsoft Virtual Academy (Recorded May 2013). If you are learning XAML, come learn with us in this free, all-day course (now available on demand). We have a lot of fun in these...
  • Jerry Nixon

    DevRadio: Developing your Windows 8 Apps using Visual C++

    Abstract: clip_image002
    Jerry Nixon welcomes Eric Battalio, Ayman Shoukry and Raman Sharma from the Visual C++ team as they discuss how you can develop Windows 8 apps using C++. Tune in as they provide best practices and reasons why you would want to use this language.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Windows 8: 1,000 Metro icons you already have installed

    Windows 8 metro applications have a few things in common. One of them is typography. Segoe (pronounced “se-go” not “see-go” or anything else), specifically we’re talking about the Segoe UI font (or a derivative of it), is the standard san serif font in...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Windows 8: Connected Standby

    Windows 7 has Power Management features allowing you to impact power consumption. One feature is Standby (called S3); this puts your PC to bed – during which no code is executed. The resume time from S3 is very fast because the system has been suspended...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Top 10 features of the Microsoft Surface

    imageMicrosoft Surface is the new tablet device made by Microsoft, running Windows RT and Windows 8. InformationWeek, today, released their top 10 for the coolest features of Microsoft Surface. I have listed them below with a little more information next to each.

    Surface: Where work meets play. The power of Windows, the productivity of Office Home & Student 2013 RT Preview, and the joy of Xbox – not to mention apps, social media, music, and more. Surface is also cloud-connected with SkyDrive, so you can access your content from anywhere, at any time.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Walkthrough: Create a whiteboard app in 10 minutes

    Recently, I updated my Timer App to version 2. And, one feature I added was a whiteboard. Letting your user draw a picture is cool. It’s also quite useful if they need to express a thousand words quickly. Anyway, I wrote it and thought, “this...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Windows 8: Making the case for Expression Blend

    imageOne of the coolest parts of the XAML designer in Visual Studio 2012 is that it is the same code base as the designer in Expression Blend for XAML. That’s right. Blend’s designer used to be better, but now Visual Studio developers are first class, too.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    We did it! Office 2013 RTMs today!

    This is truly our season of launch. With the release of Windows and everything else all aligned to a single schedule (you may never see such a feat accomplished again) it is awesome that Office is on that list.

    What’s new?

    Well, the new Office means new Office 365 service, Office 2013 clients, SharePoint 2013, Exchange 2013, Lync 2013, Project 2013, and Visio 2013! That’s a boat load of new, awesome products in the basket of Microsoft offerings this season.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    At last! A replacement to the Microsoft 7000. Thank you!

    About 80 years ago (more like 10) Microsoft released the Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000. The keyboard, mouse combo was unparalleled in ergonomic value. A culmination in ergonomic research, the 7000 was superior for several reasons!

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Do you know Microsoft’s brands?

    Now, this is just for fun. Over the years, Microsoft has commissioned hundreds of logos to brand their products and properties. Sometimes they are good. Sometimes they are great. But a great logo doesn’t mean the brand will survive. Take a look at this...
  • Jerry Nixon

    How Apple’s new IPhone 5S bald-faced copied Microsoft Windows Phone

    There is no shame in copying excellence. In fact, I would say that a core tenet of excellence is its ability to inspire excellence in others. Microsoft had the first smartphone, that doesn’t diminish Apple. Microsoft had the first smart watch, that doesn...
  • Jerry Nixon

    5 awesome reasons your Start Menu is better in Windows 8.1

    Windows 8.1 is coming. The release date is close. It’s free. Why upgrade? Not only are upgrades sensible from a performance and security perspective, but you get new features. One recipient of some feature love is the Start Menu. If you have already installed the Windows 8.1 preview, then you have experienced some of this magic. Like what? Let’s take a look!

    1. imageStart button

    To me, I don’t need a Start Button. But let’s face it, the Start Button is important to most users. It’s comfort food to Windows users – and in the end, nobody matters like our users. In Windows 8.1, it’s back from its vacation. What does it launch? The Start Menu, of course.

    Bonus: Right-click the returned Start Button (or Start “Tip“) and reveal the Quick Link menu for experts.  This menu, which was previously only available through the Windows+X keyboard shortcut, reveals handy advanced features for expert users. Want more? The Quick Launch menu now includes Shut Down and Sleep commands. Want to shut down with the fewest keystrokes, use this menu!

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Mango Sample: OAuth2 & Live Id

    Some Windows Phone applications will need to identify the user. Most Windows Phone users have a Windows Live ID. So, leverage that Windows Live ID. How? Use OAuth2. In June 2011, the Windows Live Developer platform added OAuth2 to seamlessly access Live...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Where is PhoneGap for Windows Phone 8? Right here!

    imageNative applications on mobile devices deliver a great experience to users. Only native applications can deliver excellent fidelity and performance, and support a disconnected state. But if you don’t know the devices mobile technology development can be difficult.

    Mobile web sites deliver a poor experience to users. Mobile web sites are simply web pages; they cannot access the device itself and necessitate an always-connected device. But because it’s just HTML, developers have an easier time supporting multiple devices.

    A Real Option

    Mixing native with web is PhoneGap – it executes local HTML and JavaScript in an embedded browser wrapper app. PhoneGap apps are not as awesome as native apps, but they are surely the next best thing – and are a viable option.  These types of apps don’t require developers to know much about a device – and can be deployed across the various mobile platforms with little investment. They also have access to the device itself (including sensors, battery and more); they support offline scenarios, too.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Walkthrough: Reordering items in a GridView with Drag and Drop

    So, you have some data showing in a GridView . You have ordered it programmatically. Now, you want to let the user reorder it, manually, by dragging and dropping GridView items anywhere they want. Is it easy? It sure is. GridView inherits from ListViewBase...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Everything I know ‘bout Behaviors in Blend for Visual Studio 2013

    imageWhen Visual Studio 2012 was released, it supported a new way of building apps – Windows Store apps using the Windows Runtime. These apps could be built in XAML, of course. But, unlike previous Microsoft developer tooling, Expression Blend was not shipped separately; it was moved out of the Expression Suite (which was discontinued), and bundled as part of Visual Studio – forevermore.

    This meant all developers completing developer tasks could use Visual Studio with comprehensive coding features. Moreover, all developers completing design tasks could use Blend for Visual Studio with comprehensive animation and styling features. It was a brilliant union. Today, still, a Visual Studio installation includes Blend by default. Developers have the best of both worlds.

    Aside: this article does not talk about custom behaviors. It’s not that custom behaviors are too complex, it’s that there’s too much to say about the built-in behaviors first. I’ll try to follow-up with a custom behaviors article. In the meantime, enjoy.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    Here are some of the new things in Windows 8.1

    imageWindows 8.1 is imminent. What’s the word on the consumer features new to the update? Here’s the top of the list.

    Search

    Get results form your PC (like files, songs, and settings) and from the web with Bing. For some searches, you can tap or click right from the results to open maps, play songs, or call a business.

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  • Jerry Nixon

    IPhone 5S features I want to see on my Windows Phone, today!

    Fingerprint authentication . I had it way back with Windows Mobile and loved it. But I don’t have it with Windows Phone. I certainly have a little biometric envy. Multi-colored flash . I have a xenon flash, which spanks any LED flash. Good lighting is...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Amazing. What’s new in WPF 4.5?

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