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    IE8 Beta – Pointers for making your website compatible with IE8 standards rendering mode



    IE8 Beta 1 has been out for several months now and we are closing in on the release of IE8 Beta 2, which has been announced for August 2008 by the IE team. Now is a good time to get started on ensuring site compatibility with this new release.

    Because IE8 will default to standards mode for displaying HTML pages, it is possible your site will not display as it is currently doing in IE7. How can you prevent problems and what do you need to do? Let’s review the different solutions going from an absolute minimum effort to major changes in the HTML.

    This post is intended to give you a quick overview of the solutions and pointers to more detailed white papers (find these at the bottom of the post).

    Major differences between IE7 and IE8 on rendering of HTML pages

    Why is compatibility so important? IE8 will offer 3 different ways of rendering content:

    1. “Quirks mode” (IE5) remains the same, and compatible with current content.
    2. “Quirk mode” (IE7) remains the same as IE7, and compatible with current content.
    3. “Standards mode” (IE8), this is the default mode in which pages are displayed

    As IE8 is planned to have full support for the CSS 2.1 standard and implement some CSS3 functionalities, the “Standards” mode is now the default rendering mode. But as many HTML developers have worked around some differences in HTML rendering in IE7 and before, this means your site may no longer display as desired in IE8.

    Solutions for site compatibility in IE8

    First of all you should test your site against the latest IE8 beta, to make sure there are any problems present. If you already have a site that follows standards closely and used conditional statement for example, you may not have to do any changes at all.

    However, in case your site is optimized for IE7, the solutions below explain what you may do to make sure the site still displays nicely in IE8.

    Solution 1: Add HTTP header in web server (effort: low)

    This is a low effort solution if you have administrative rights to the web server(s) on which your site is running. Add an HTTP header on the server:

    X-UA-Compatible: IE=EmulateIE7

    Solution 2: Add a meta tag per page (effort: medium)

    Add a HTTP-EQUIV meta tag after the <head> tag on the page:

    <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=EmulateIE7" />

    Solution 3: Adapting the HTML code to be standards compliant (effort: low to high depending on implementation)

    If you are making your website HTML code compliant with CSS 2.1 you might need to have changes done in the HTML. This effort however depends mostly on which workarounds or non-standards features have been implemented.

    You can also add conditional statements to keep serving non-standards CSS or content to previous browser versions.

    If you want to explicitly set that the site is IE8 standards compliant you can use the following tag:

    <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=8" />

    Or you can choose to add a standards mode DOCTYPE.

    Why worry now?

    Beta 2, coming out in August 2008 will most probably be downloaded by a lot more end (power) users than the previous beta 1. You certainly don’t want your visitors to experience any hick-ups while visiting your site through IE8, so that’s why now is a very good time to start working on a solution.

    Extra resources and information

    Hans Le Roy’s blog in Dutch: if you are looking for information on IE8 in Dutch this is a very good resource. Hans is a Belgian MVP on IE and has posted over 30 posts on IE8 alone.

    IE Team Blog on MSDN
    This is the major resource for all news around IE8. The team posts very frequently on supported features.

    IE8 whitepapers
    This page on MSDN code gallery contains really good white papers on the different elements that are new in IE8. Going from solutions like the one discussed above to managing Add-Ons, performance improvements, CSS 2.1 compliance and much more. A fantastic reference.

    CSS Compatbility and Internet Explorer
    This document provides tables with CSS compliance indication starting from browser version IE 5.0 to IE8. A good reference to keep close by. This allows you to easily check if a certain feature of CSS 2.1 or CSS3 is supported, and in which version.


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    My first TechReady experience


    I’m writing this as I’m flying home from Seattle to Brussels via Amsterdam. Feeling a bit cramped here as the person in front of me just put het seat back. But well, that’s with flights right. I have just enough space to open up my laptop and see the whole of my screen. Open up Live Writer and preparing my post-TechReady post (that does sound funny :-). I can hit Publish button as soon as we land.

    I’m returning home after attending Microsoft’s biggest internal technical conference in Seattle. Having joined last year I now got the chance to attend this 5 day, 800+ sessions event with topics for every techie’s need. It’s called TechReady, this is the 7th edition so we tend to call it TechReady7 or abbreviate to TR7.

    Although I’ve been to TechEd events before but this event does feel different, we are all part of the company and because it is held close to campus in Redmond we have the chance to see a lot more of the guys (and some girls) of the product teams. Since this is also an internal event the type of information that we get is looking ahead to the coming months, and did we get to see some very nice stuff! I wish I could write about some of it. PDC will be the time when much of it is announced publicly.

    Topics and sessions
    Without mentioning any details of future releases, I can however divulge the type of sessions I went to. We got to see and learn about the trend the company is taking is regards to software development. To give you an idea, some of the topics are these:

    • Roadmap information on the new version of Visual Studio and .NET
    • Live platform (Virtual Earth, Live APIs), new protocols
    • Live Mesh
    • Software + Services
    • and much more, not so future looking like .NET 3.5 SP1, WPF, ASP.NET, MVC, SharePoint…

    And not to forget a totally crazy session named Mobility Smackdown; If you want to get an idea of the excitement around this session check out a video made last time…

    Special sessions
    As part of DPE, Developer & Platform Evangelism, we had the chance to see Scott Guthrie and Anders Hejlsberg for two Q&A sessions. It was fascinating to have a chance to meet people that I have been looking up to since a long time.

    And not to forget the top speakers we got at the keynotes: Ray Ozzie, Norm Judah, Kevin Turner and producer John Landau speaking about the new Avatar movie.

    TechReady was also an opportunity to meet some of my peers from over the world: Marc (he has an original domain name :), Quixing, Mitsu, Paolo, Mike, Jorge, and so many others!

    Seattle is an international hub during this week, or that’ what the sales guy at the sports store told me.

    Oh, is it true that it always rains in Seattle? The event was held last week, this is the middle of Summer, but we did manage to get rain a few times. So I guess it is true after all…

    TechReady7 logo at the Convention Center in Seattle.

    100_0533 View from the Space Needle onto Seattle downtown.


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    Composite Application Guidance for WPF (previously PRISM)


    The Patterns & Practices team at Microsoft released the Composite Application Guidance for WPF earlier this month. As I blogged about earlier, composite WPF which was code named “Prism” previously, provides guidance in building composite WPF applications.

    When you download the package you get a whole bunch of material:

    • A sample reference application: Stock Trader Reference Implementation
      I always appreciate when samples applications are delivered with the download. This helps me so much better understand and see an example of something that is already working. Normally by looking at how the sample is implemented I get better ideas on how to implement my own project.
    • Composite Application Library for WPF
    • Documentation (300 pages documentation): Composite Baseline Architecture, How-to guides, Stock Trader RI overview, UI Designer Guidance, Design and Technical Concepts and more
    • Quickstarts

    With this release, two main challenges are addressed:

    • Modularity: The Composite Application Library promotes modularity by allowing you to implement business logic, visual components, infrastructure components, presenter or controller components, and any other objects the application requires, in separate modules. Developers can easily create the UI and implement business logic independently of each other.
    • User Interface Composition: The Composite Application Library promotes user interface composition by allowing you to implement visual components from various loosely coupled visual components, known as views, which may reside in separate modules. The visual components may display content from multiple back-end systems. To the user, it appears as one seamless application.

    Here are the main links you need to get started:

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    Community Day 2008 – 12 sessions by 9 user groups


    Yesterday the second Belgian Community Day took place in Keerbergen. I joined in a bit later due to some meetings at the office but it was still more than worth it. Nine Belgian User Groups joined in this year to organize a day “For the Community, By the Community”. I would like to thank all the people involved into getting this organized, I know it was a lot of work these last months. Special thanks to Ilse and Gill as they really made sure eveything was running.

    When I got there, halfway during the event, 4 sessions were underway. I decided to join in Riemer Grootjans’ session on XNA game development. It was a great session going over the most important elements to start doing game development. Not (yet) having done any game development myself I was amazed to learn how everything built in 3D is done by drawing triangles! Check out Riemer’s fantastic tutorials Riemer has on his website. This will get you started in no time.

    image  image

    What’s more, Riemer is releasing his first book on XNA development on the 30th of June 2008 and showed us lots of samples from the book. The book is titled “XNA 2.0 Game Programming Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach” and is being released by Apress.

    Congratulations on this Riemer, I’m going to get one as soon as possible!

    If you want to join other game developers or just game lovers in Belgium, be sure to keep an eye on the new XNA User Group (XNABUG) meetings.

    After Riemer’s session I actually tried to check out more than one session so I saw some new stuff on SQL Server 2008, a debate between Joris and Ilse on Exchange Public Folders and Sharepoit (can’t wait to see the full video of that one :-), and Gill’s Deep Dive on Silverlight 2. Several sessions were recorded so you can expect them online on Chopsticks anytime soon.
    I’m sorry I missed out Kurt Claeys’ session on ADO.NET Entity Framework, I heard it was very good.

    It was nice talking to all of you during dinner. Great work and already looking forward with next year. I hear you have some new ideas…

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    New screencasts by Gregory Renard on Chopsticks


    There are now 3 new recordings available on Chopsticks by our Regional Director Gregory Renard.

    The recordings are all on new features of Visual Basic 2008, are available in French and follow the series “10 minutes avec votre RD” that Gregory launched earlier this year.


  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    MSDN event recording: Using Team Foundation Server for Version Control: Best Practices for TFS Branching and Merging


    Last Wednesday Yves Goeleven presented the MSDN evening session on Team Foundation Server branching and merging patterns. During the introduction Yves explains the main groups of problems that you encounter in the development environment, and how to identify the needs in to your own specific case. Depending on the needs you will lean towards one of the other patterns that is presented during the session.

    Yves has 10 different scenarios for branching and merging practices: going from least complex to the more complex setup and teams (team sizes up to 1000). Every scenario comes with a demo so it gives you a practical example.
    The recording has been split up in three smaller parts (total is 2 hours):

    The powerpoint presentation can be found on Yves’ blog.


    Thanks Yves for the great presentation, and Tom for putting the recordings online so quickly.

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    MSDN Evening "Building setup packages with WiX": recording online


    The MSDN evening session from last week has been recorded and can be watched online on our Chopsticks platform. In this session, Martijn Beenes, coming specially from the Netherlands for this session, explains how to use the installer tools, MSI's, WiX toolset (Windows Installer XML), and shows how to create a fully customized Windows installer packages using WiX.

    View the session online: (you will need to login for this as it's premium content).

    Together with the recording you can also find the PowerPoint presentation by clicking the Resources tab.

    Martijn, thanks for the great session, we hope to see you again in Belgium in the future.


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    Silverlight 2 Beta 2 and related downloads


    During the opening keynote at TechEd Orlando last Tuesday, Soma announced the availability of Silverlight 2 Beta 2. As from now you can find the different downloads related to Silverlight 2 Beta 2. The best place to start is reading Scott Guthrie's post on the beta 2 release. As always, he gives a clear overview of what is new with some very interesting samples.

    Links to main Silverlight 2 Beta 2 downloads

    New and improved features

    Go live license: there is now a commercial Go-live license for Silverlight 2 Beta 2. Hey, if NBC is going live on this version for the Olympics why shouldn't you?

    Data: LINQ-to-JSON, ADO.NET Data Services support (Astoria) and other enhancements to make data handling easier. theADOGuy has a good post on Silverlight 2 and Astoria.

    Networking: I'm glad there is now support for duplex communications (“push” from server to Silverlight client, yes, yes, yes! this one was a much requested feature), improved cross domain support and security enhancements and upload support for WebClient.

    Rich controls: TabControl (new in Beta 2, check out Tim's post on this), wrapping and scrolling for the TextControl, and a new templating model called Visual State Manager (VSM) that allows for easier templating for controls. Check Christian Schormann's post for an introduction to VSM.

    Deep zoom: there is now an XML-based file format for Deep Zoom image tiles, as well as a new MultiScaleTileSource that enables existing tile databases to utilize Deep Zoom. This means you will have to re-generate your Deep Zoom projects and adapt some of the code in the Silverlight implementation.

    If you are interested in reading about other announcements that were made during the TechEd keynote, Gill has some details.

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    Prism: codename for the new guidance for Composite Application development for WPF


    imagePrism is the codename for the new guidance for Composite Application development for WPF. This is not an update to CAB (Composite UI Application Block), it delivers a new set of assets and guidance for developing new Composite WPF applications. As it is not based on previous smart client offerings it is really optimized for WPF and gives a simplified approach that is more easily adoptable. Prism includes a reference implementation, reusable library code and pattern guidance.

    I've been reading on Prism and collected a few URLs that should get you started on Prism. Please note that this is still not in beta, drop 6 is currently available for download from the CodePlex site.

    If you are wondering whether Prism is a replacement for Acropolis (which has been delayed), it's not really the same thing. Acropolis is still undergoing and will be folded into future versions of the .NET platform. "Prism" focuses only on a subset of what Acropolis was aiming to provide.

    There is one thing I don't like though, hope the team comes up with a nicer logo :-) sorry guys, really not my thing.

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    VSX, VISUG and Multi-mania events


    I'm really running behind with my blogging, these have been busy weeks. I was at several community events and did a presentation at Multi-mania. Wow, that was a first where everybody was talking around mostly non-Microsoft products. Gill, Brecht and I were the only ones doing sessions on Microsoft technologies. The good thing to see there was the openness of the audience. Lots of people talking about Silverlight, curiosity to say the least.

    VISUG event on VSX

    On Tuesday 20th of Mary we had the visit of James Lau and Jean-Marc Prieur from the VSX team (Visual Studio Extensibility). They are on tour through Europe and did a first presentation at Microsoft offices, in the evening there was a VISUG user group event foreseen.
    James and Jean-Marc did a wonderful session on Visual Studio Extensibility: extension packages, DSL tools, entDev, etc. The good news is my colleague Tom already did all the encoding of the recorded videos and you can view the whole session online. If you want to learn more about extending Visual Studio, using the Visual Studio Shell for host your own designers and programming environment and more: check out the videos.
    During the presentation Jean-Marc did two full demos of building tools from scratch: building a custom source code outliner and building a custom DSL. This is a great way to get started on your own. Also check out James' write-up about the day.

    Here is a list of resources that are worth checking out around VSX:

    Wygday and BIWUG event

    The Belgian Information Worker User Group meeting was last Thursday. I had a lot of trouble to get there on time...
    In the morning I travelled to Lille (boy, that's no longer Belgium, that's France!) to attend the Wygday, an event organized by Wygwam, the company of our Regional Director Gregory Renard. There were lots of interesting sessions around SharePoint, Silverlight, .NET Framework 3.5 SP1, GAT, GAX, etc. The event was organized together with Microsoft France but as quite some Belgian developers go over there as well it was worth the travel to meet up.

    Then I left early enough to get to the BIWUG meeting in Kontich but had the bad luck of getting stuck in two big traffic jams. Result: a 1h30 drive took more than 3h30. But I still got to the BIWUG event, even if I was late!

    When I arrived there the first presentation was already well under way: an introduction to Lotus software (Quickr), only got to see the final part of this presentation.
    Then Kurt Claeys did a presentation on Bizatlk integration with SharePoint Services and MOSS. Donwload his and the other presentation slides from Joris' blog.

    Multi-mania event in Kortrijk

    As I already mentioned in the beginning of this post, Friday 23rd May was Multi-mania day. It was a first for me to be presenting at a non (MS) developer event, lots of creative people around with presentations about their work, vision of the future of the web and lots of interactive and design technology (can you guess who was the main sponsor? :-).
    Gill did a general RIA development with Silverlight 2 session. As always, I think it was very well structured and introduces the technology well for people not having done Silverlight yet. The room was not completely full but the audience was very interested in seeing what Microsoft is doing in that space.

    Brecht, one of the founders of the new XNA user group in Belgium (XNABUG) did a presentation on XNA game development, he had some great samples with games on a Zune and some of the projects Belgian participants of the Imagine Cup. That same day we actually got the good news that one of the Belgian teams has made it to the final 6 in Game Development in the Imagine Cup. Congratulations guys!

    My own session was focused on the learning's for designers when doing WPF and Silverlight projects in Expression Blend. I mostly used great samples provided by Arturo Toledo, a designer audience product manager at Microsoft. He did a fantastic session at MIX that you definitely need to check out: XAML Ready Agency with Expression Blend.

    VISUG HHH session: Introduction to Workflow Foundation

    This week another VISUG event took place at Ordina in Merelbeke, presented by Kurt Claeys. Kurt again, he is keeping busy! Kurt gave a good overview of what Workflow Foundation is all about with lots of samples. He started by explaining the basics using .NET 3.0 samples and then moved to version 3.5, explaining the main updates between the two releases. 

    I especially appreciated the TV sample he made to explain State Machine workflows. This is actually explained in an article he did 2 years ago: State Machine Workflows in Windows Workflow Foundation. This is still version 3.0 but very usable in the current version as the article explains the concepts.

    Kurt is already in Orlando for next week's TechEd US, where he will be helping out with the Hands-on-Labs the whole week. Have a nice time Kurt!

    Workflow Foundation: new articles by Serge Luca

    And to finish off, Serge Luca has posted part 11 and 12 of his Step by Step Tutorial "Creating Workflows for Windows Sharepoint Services and MOSS2007". Check out the two new articles on his blog:

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    Watch VISUG session on VSX (Visual Studio Extensibility) online


    Last week James Lau and Jean-Marc Prieur from the Visual Studio Extensibility team, visited Belgium and did a presentation at VISUG user group. If you missed the session or have not yet seen much about VSX this is a good opportunity. It's a 2 hour presentation with lots of demos.

    You can now watch the whole presentation online, it has been split into 5 parts:

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    Next BIWUG meeting Thursday 22nd May 2008


    The next meeting for the Belgian Information Worker User Group is taking place on May 22nd 2008 at 19:00.

    During this meeting there are three sessions planned:

    • Biztalk integration with SharePoint and InfoPath forms using the Biztalk 2006 R2 SharePoint adapter by Kurt Claeys
    • IBM Team Collaboration Software – Lotus software by Koen Renders en Tom Van Aken
    • Windows Workflow Foundation – deep dive by Tom Nys

    You can read more details on the BIWUG site and register for the event here, it's always a great opportunity to learn something new and meet with peers.

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    .NET 3.5 SP1 Beta and Visual Studio 2008 SP1 Beta are out


    Today we released the Beta versions of the Service Packs that will be shipping for .NET 3.5 and Visual Studio 2008.

    Please note that the betas are intended as a mechanism to allow early testing and feedback. As a beta release, it is recommended that you only install the service pack on test machines.

    What is new with these Service Packs?

    There are several bug fixes and enhancements, the most notable ones I'm listing in here.

    • WPF enhancements: more controls, a streamlined setup, improved start-up performance, and powerful new graphics features. See Channel9 post for more details.
    • .NET Framework Client release ("Arrowhead"): this is subset of the full .NET Framework 3.5 SP1. It allows for faster setup on client machines not yet running version 3.5 of the .NET framework. This new setup installer enables a faster, simpler installation experience for .NET applications on Windows XP and Windows Vista.
    • ASP.NET Dynamic Data
    • ADO.NET Entity Framework
    • ADO.NET Data Services (codename "Astoria")
    • The .NET Framework Data Provider for SQL Server (SqlClient) adds new support for file stream and sparse column capabilities in SQL Server 2008.

    Update: Review the complete, extensive, detailed list of enhancements on ScottGu's blog. As always, Scott's post gives you all possible information you need on this.

    Compatibility issues with Silverlight 2 Beta 1 tools

    Note that there are a few known incompatibilities with this service pack including: Expression Blend, the Silverlight 2 Beta 1 SDK, and the Microsoft Silverlight Tools Beta 1 for Visual Studio 2008. A new version of Expression Blend 2.5 March Preview has been released here that is compatible with this service pack. 

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    Silverlight collaboration demo source code from the MIX essentials keynote


    A few people at the MIX essentials event we organized in April requested me to post the source code for the Silverlight demo we gave in the opening keynote. So, here is the code (download at the bottom) along with some explanations of what we implemented. What's also available: a running example hosted at Silverlight Streaming.


    Check out the recording of the session to view the demo being demonstrated live.

    Button style

    The "Refresh" button's style is customized by using Application Resources. Application resources allow you to define styles and templates to be applied to controls. Check out this tutorial on styles and templates in Silverlight.

    Style and templating defined in App.xaml file:

            <!-- Button -->
            <Style x:Key="hardComic" TargetType="Button">
                <Setter Property="IsEnabled" Value="true" />
                <Setter Property="IsTabStop" Value="true" />
                <Setter Property="Foreground" Value="#FFFFFFFF" />
                <Setter Property="FontSize" Value="16" />
                <Setter Property="Cursor" Value="Hand" />
                <Setter Property="TextAlignment" Value="Center" />
                <Setter Property="TextWrapping" Value="NoWrap" />
    <!-- code omitted -->

    The custom style is applied to the button by using the key (Page.xaml file):

    <Button x:Name="buttonRefresh" Style="{StaticResource hardComic}" ... />

    By applying a custom style and control template, the layout of the button changes from




    Bubble animation

    The bubbles in the test tube were created in Expression Blend 2.5. The animation is created by moving the bubbles from the bottom of the test tube to the limit of the pink liquid. This is done in a Storyboard containing several keyframes for the different bubbles. A different path is used for each bubble so that the effect is like real bubbles are coming up. At the end of the storyboard, Opacity of each bubble is set to 0% so that these are no longer visible. We also set the Repeat behavior of the storyboard to Forever so that the animation keeps on playing once its started.

    image  (click to enlarge)

    Thanks to Stijn for the animation!

    Loading images through REST

    Photos are loaded by accessing the Flickr search REST service. This is done by creating a WebClient object, accessing the service asynchronously and then parsing the returned XML to load the photos on the surface:

    private void LoadPictures()
                // Initialize Flickr URI
                string tags = "mixessentialsbe";
                string key = "hidden";
                string flickrApi = string.Format("
    , key, tags); // Asynchronous call to REST Service WebClient rest = new WebClient(); rest.DownloadStringCompleted += new DownloadStringCompletedEventHandler
    (rest_DownloadStringCompleted); rest.DownloadStringAsync(new Uri(flickrApi)); } void rest_DownloadStringCompleted(object sender, DownloadStringCompletedEventArgs e) { if (!_photosLoaded && (0 != Width) && (0 != Height)) { //... some code omitted if (doc.Element("rsp").Attribute("stat").Value == "ok") { // Current Page Logic int totalPages = Convert.ToInt32(doc.Descendants("photos").Single().
    Attribute("total").Value); if (_pageIndex >= totalPages) _pageIndex = 0; // Get Photo collection using Linq to XML var photos = (from results in doc.Descendants("photo") select new { id = results.Attribute("id").Value.ToString(), farm = results.Attribute("farm").Value.ToString(), server = results.Attribute("server").Value.ToString(), secret = results.Attribute("secret").Value.ToString() }).Skip(_pageIndex * 10).Take(10); // Add a photo control for each Photo returned foreach (var photo in photos) { url = string.Format("http://farm{0}{1}/{2}_{3}_m.jpg",, photo.server,, photo.secret); new Photo(this, this.SurfaceLayoutRoot, new Uri(url)); } _photosLoaded = true; } } }

    I recommend reading Gill's tutorial on Silverlight 2 data and services for detailed information on accessing services using Silverlight.

    The Surface-like experience

    To show the photos we reused some sample code from the Community samples at Silverilght Surface sample.

    This example includes a custom Photo class that we have reused and slity adapted to fit the new parent object (our Page.xaml). It adds a really cool experience to displaying the photos.


    Getting the source code to work: Flickr API key

    You do need to request your own API key at Flickr and add it to the code before being able to run the code locally. Sign-up for a key at the Flickr site and then change the key in Page.xaml.cs file:

     private void LoadPictures()
                // Initialize Flickr URI
                string tags = "mixessentialsbe";
                //todo: create your own API key at Flickr and copy here:
                string key = "flickr api key here";
                string flickrApi = string.Format("{0}&tags={1}", key, tags);
            //rest of code omitted...     

    Add the key, rebuild and the app should run locally.

    Download the source code

    Code can be downloaded from my Skydrive.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    MIX essentials 2008 Roundup


    IMG_1376Last week on April 24th we had our first MIX essentials event in Belgium. It was a full day with a dynamic opening keynote; developer and designer break-out sessions and of course a fantastic closing keynote and Q&A session with Steve Ballmer.

    Opening keynote

    The opening keynote was a mix of presentations, demos and some cool videos (if I say so myself :-)). Luc van de Velde was the conductor doing the intro of the developer/designer collaboration story and orchestrating all demos and other presenters. clip_image001
    The first demo was done by 4 guys from 4 of Belgium's top web agencies, each of them with a defined role in the collaboration story: Jan from Nascom, Stijn from These Days, Thomas from LBi and Chris from Emakina. Check it out here.

    Next we had Martin Tirion, UX Evangelist coming over from the Netherlands to present us the newest around IE8, Silverlight 2 and Expression Suite 2. I did a few demos during his part as well.

    To close off the keynote, Catherine Heller, Technical Evangelist came over from Redmond for an overview of the Windows Live platform. She also invited someone from Truvo on stage to give a demo on their Live Agent to search for phone numbers of people and businesses. If you want to add the bot to your messenger account just add a friend and choose for French or for Dutch.


    Recordings of all sessions

    All sessions are now (yes now!) available on our MSDN Chopsticks platform, keynote videos are available without login, for the breakout sessions simply login using a Live ID account as this is premium content. The PowerPoint presentations are also available for download with each video.


    Designer sessions were delivered by David Pugh-Jones, Ian Griffiths and Paul Dawson. Developer sessions were delivered by Tim Heuer, Catherine Heller and Gill Cleeren.

    Pictures of the event

    Lots of pictures have been posted on Flickr (thanks Miel and Gill).

    IMG_1317 IMG_1333 

    What's next?

    Hopefully next year we will be hosting a second edition of MIX essentials and we'll see you there. In the meantime, subscribe to our newsletter Express Yourself, keep track of the news on our Twitter account and Light up the web!

    Here are some resources mentioned during the event to get you started on Silverlight and Microsoft Expression.

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