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    MSDN Road Show: Rich Client Experiences with Silverlight 2 and WPF coming to a city near you


    Are you looking for more technical information on creating RIAs (Rich Internet Applications) and RDAs (Rich Desktop Applications)? MSDN BeLux is organizing a road show around these technologies. This is your chance to learn about Silverlight, new ASP.NET Ajax features and learn about the .NET Client Profile with WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation).

    Hereunder you can find the description of the event, please note that sessions are in different languages: 1 session in English, 2 in Dutch and 2 in French. All sessions take place in October so be quick to register in time.



    MSDN Road Show: Build Rich Client Experiences with Silverlight 2 and WPF
    Delivering rich client experiences to users is becoming an important aspect of new applications.
    Join us for the MSDN Road Show to keep in touch with the latest innovations. Learn how you can develop rich applications that deploy to the web and go beyond what you can typically do inside of a browser based application.
    We will cover 3 main topics:

    • New features in ASP.NET AJAX
    • Building a Silverlight 2 application that uses remote services, data binding, templating and styling, both with Visual Studio 2008 and Expression Blend 2.5
    • Windows Presentation Foundation and the .NET Client Profile

    See you there!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    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

    Expression Blend 2: tips & tricks using the interface


    Being a developer using Expression Blend 2 (or 2.5 Preview) for implementing basic design of Silverlight or WPF applications, I’ve collected a list of my favorite shortcuts and tips to using the interface. At first it’s a whole new interface you need to get used. These are my personal most used shortcuts.

    Ctrl + mouse wheel - Zooming in and out and the interface zoom level
    The quickest way to zoom in and out in the design view is by pressing the CTRL key and using the mouse wheel to zoom in and out.
    You can also use the zoom pane at the bottom left of the central pane. 

    F6 - Switch between Design and Animation workspace
    In other words, switch between the normal workspace in which the interaction and timeline editing is shown on the left, and the timeline view at the bottom. All you need to do is press F6 to switch between the views.
    image  image 

    F4 - View artboard only (remove left and right panels)
    If you need more space to work on the artboard area (central area), you can use F4 to make the work panels disappear.
    Notice that the Properties window’s elements are still available as fly-out menus in the right:

    Ctrl + 0 – Fit to screen
    Zooms the control to fit to screen (work area, depending on what space is available).

    Ctrl + 1 - Actual size
    Zooms the control to its actual size.

    Set design-time width and height
    In case you want your Silverlight control to automatically adjust to the screen size you need to set Width and Height to Auto. However, for working in Blend it is easier if you can set a “working” width and height. You can do this by dragging the design-time height icons:
    Design-time width and height only have effect in Blend. Note the XAML that is used for this:

    <UserControl ... xmlns:d="" 
    mc:Ignorable="d" d:DesignWidth="292.261" d:DesignHeight="362.262">...

    Do you have more shortcuts or tips for the Blend interface? Leave me a comment and maybe I can do a follow-up post with all the tips from the community.


    Note: design “SpaceCute” copyright, by Dan Cook.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    10 minutes with your DE - Data Access in .NET Framework 3.5 SP1: short video


    After the famous “10 minutes with your RD” by Regional Director Gregory Renard, I decided to get started with my own short screencast series on Chopsticks as well. I’m naming these “10 minutes with your DE”.

    My first screencast is now online, I ended up with more than 10 minutes, 13:40 to be exact… bear with me for my first cast, I’ll try keeping to the timing better as I evolve with my screen recording abilities :)

    10 minutes with your DE - # 1: Data Access Technologies with .NET Framework 3.5 SP1


    With the Service Pack 1 release for Visual Studio 2008 and the .NET Framework 3.5, new data access technologies are available to us. In this screencast I talk about ADO.NET, ADO.NET Entity Framework, ADO.NET Data Services and more.

    Update: You can download the PowerPoint presentation here:


  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2: resources for developers and HTML integrators


    With the release of IE8 Beta 2 you are likely to start getting more questions and more (power) end users trying this release out. In this post I’ll point out some of the new features of IE8 and then give you the most important pointers for compatibility and development.

    IE8 Beta 2 Download link.
    IE Blog with the upgrade information on beta 2.


    First things first, before checking out the new features of the browser it’s important that your visitors have a good experience browsing your site. Check out my previous post on IE8 compatibility for starters, and in addition to that there is extra information hereunder.

    With Beta 2 there is an update to the compatibility settings, here is an overview of the available choices. You can set your compatibility using the header “X-UA-Compatible”, either in the web server as a HTTP header or on the page as a meta tag.

    Compatibility Mode Value Render Behavior
    IE=5 “Quirks” mode
    IE=7 ”Standards” mode
    IE=EmulateIE7 “Quirks” mode if the page does not contain a DOCType, IE7 Strict mode otherwise
    IE=8 Internet Explorer 8 Standards mode
    IE=edge Use latest standards that Internet Explorer 8 and any future versions of the browser support. (Not recommended for production sites)

    Also important to note is that your META tag in the page will override the compatibility HTTP header if this one is also used.

    Using DOCTYPE for compatibility
    Another way of setting the desired layout of your site is using the DOCTYPE. However, setting the above mentioned X-UA-Compatible META tag will override any DOCTYPE setting.


    Developer Tools

    Developer tools are shipped with the browser, these allow you to debug Javascript, HTML and CSS (view styles, trace, edit styles), change the rendering engine so that you can easily test your layout mode, use a Javascript profiler and even save your edits in CSS and HTML.

    To call up the Developer Tools window, press F12 or click the image  icon.

    For example, I can trace CSS styles:


    Using the Layout tool I can visually see the distance between the selected object and the parent, the padding, border and margins.


    New features

    IE8 introduces a lot of new features in different domains, be it in standards support, CSS 2.1 (and some CSS3), privacy, security, performance improvements in JScript, W3C HTML5 local store, etc. I’m pointing out a few of them:

    Web Slices

    Web Slices allow a user to subscribe to a specific section of a page. For example there is one I like to use which shows me the updated statuses of my Facebook friends.

    Developing Web Slices: web slices are implemented using some specific CSS classes that do nothing in other browsers. You can now even have controls inside the WebSlice like Silverlight or Flash. To see some samples, check out a lab on MSDN code gallery:


    Just that you know, these were called Activities in IE8 beta 1 and have now been renamed to Accelerators.
    Accelerators are great for enabling users to execute an a certain action right from out on the page. For example, translating a sentence, mapping an address, blogging a quote, all from a contextual menu that is displayed when you select some text or a link. They’re implemented using the OpenService Format.

    Non-administrator ActiveX installation
    This might be of most interest at enterprise level, IE8 lets you install ActiveX controls without Administator privileges, on a per-user basis. IE8 also lets the user allow specific ActiveX controls to be enabled only on individual sites, preventing that a control would run on any other than the chosen site.

    Mutable DOM prototypes
    This is a great feature that allows you to rewrite any DOM method so that for example a certain built-in method returns the same result as in another browser. This is something I was looking for since some time!

    So now, go out and install IE8 Beta 2 (I know you’ve been waiting for it), test your site, add compat if needed and then start using all the new goodies.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    MIX essentials micro blog


    If you are a user of Twitter you may want to start following the MIX essentials micro blog. We are posting updates as they come available, so this is a good place to check for any new additions or information on the agenda.

    During the event on the 24th of April we will also be posting updates throughout the day, so check out

    Also, if you are a Facebook user you can also add the event to your profile. And invite all your friends over as well: Don't forget that you still need to register over at the MIX essentials site as well :-)


    Technorati tags: ,,,

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Mobile app idea? Get funding and support with AppCampus



    Do you have a first-to-market idea with a fresh approach on design elegance, and superior quality and performance? Are you a developers and/or entrepreneur with the ambition to launch the next big thing in mobile?

    The Aalto University (Finland), Nokia and Microsoft have started a joint venture to accelerate mobile application development. With a working budget of 18 million euros they foster mobile application development on Windows Phone and any other Nokia platform. All Belgian – Luxembourg entrepreneurs, start-ups and companies can apply for the AppCampus Award.




    Successful AppCampus-applicants will receive awards varying from 20.000, 50.000, to 70.000 euros, depending on the complexity of the app. In addition, from within the AppCampus initiative, you will get access to world-class training, coaching and marketing support. Windows Phone Store and Nokia Store offer global monetization opportunities to program participants via distribution to consumers around the world.

    AppCampus is 100% free of charge. It does not obtain intellectual property rights, nor is it interested in any commission from the investment.


    AppCampus is a global initiative. Anyone from anywhere in the world can apply as long as you have a corporate identity. (For students we have the Imagine Cup and Imagine Cup grants program)

    The only requirement is that successful applications are expected to be available exclusively on Windows Marketplace, or Nokia Store for a limited time. More information here.

    No time to lose – apply now on

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    REMIX10 – Update and final chance to register


    This is it, next Tuesday 28th of September 2010 we will be hosting REMIX10 in De Montil, Affligem. We’ve managed to get a great list of speakers, both national and international, join us to deliver eight different sessions.

    If you want to register, now is the time! You have a choice for Web Developer or User Experience track. Don’t worry if you wish to switch rooms once at the event: you are welcome to move between tracks.

    Register for the Web Developer track Register for the User Experience track

    FYI: You are also welcome to register for Architect Forum or TechNet Cloud event on September 27th 2010.

    Here’s our final REMIX10 agenda, looking forward to seeing you next week!


    9:00 - 10:15

    Opening keynote
    Luc Van de Velde, Katrien De Graeve and Guests


    10:15 - 10:45

    Coffee break


    10:45 - 12:00

    UX Track


    Web developer track


    Design venturing
    Design techniques for identifying, developing and evaluating business opportunities
    This session will cover several case studies and best practices from the Microsoft Pioneer Studios, a design venture team that is chartered with developing new consumer businesses for Microsoft. Learn how to harvest insights, translate them into value propositions and build products around core brand ideas. Examples include ventures in emerging markets and mobile devices. Q&A to follow.
    Speaker: Georg Petschnigg


    Internet Explorer and HTML5: A Lap Around Windows Internet Explorer 9 For Developers
    Internet Explorer 9 contains many new features that give developers many new options for building rich Web applications. From enhanced features like the developer tools and or support for more DOM interactivity – Internet Explorer 9 is the browser you’ve been asking for. We take a dive into these features and learn how you can take advantage of brand new HTML5, Canvas, SVG, ECMAScript 5 and much more.
    Speaker: Pete LePage


    12:00 - 13:00



    13:00 - 14:15

    UX Track


    Web developer track


    UX Super Powers with Expression Blend 4
    Expression Studio and Silverlight have come a long way. We are now in version 4 and it is full of powerful and sophisticated new additions that will help you produce UI intensive experiences in fun and creative ways never seen before like with PathLayout to order and animate objects along a path of any shape creating all sorts of creative UI metaphors. We will also review the use of Expression Blend to design Windows Phone 7 applications leveraging the best of Expression Blend
    New Rich UI Tools in Expression Blend 4
    Designing Windows Phone 7 Apps with Expression Blend
    SketchFlow Techniques
    Photoshop | Illustrator | Expression Design
    Speaker: Arturo Toledo


    Building a Silverlight 4 Application End to End
    When you’re asked to build a new Silverlight application from scratch, it may be a bit hard to know where to start exactly. What would you say if you spend 75 minutes of your day and I show you the steps involved in creating a complete business application? Sounds neat, doesn’t it?! In the scenario, we are following a company that wants to set up a campaign site in Silverlight 4 that makes it possible to send Christmas cards. Among others, we’ll be spending some time with printing and webcam interaction, data binding, COM interop, out-of-browser features and data service access. Indeed, Christmas does come early this year!
    Speaker: Gill Cleeren


    14:15 - 14:30

    Change sessions


    14:30 - 15:45

    UX Track


    Web developer track


    Windows Phone 7 Design Principles
    Windows Phone 7 brings a radically new approach to user interface to the phone. In this session we’ll discuss how you can utilize this approach in your application design, enabling the delivery of powerful user experiences that integrate tightly with the overall look and feel of “Metro,” the codename for the Windows Phone design system.
    Speaker: Kat Holmes and Karen Davis


    Building for the cloud: integrating an application on Windows Azure
    It’s time to take advantage of the cloud! In this session Maarten builds further on the application created during Gill Cleeren’s Silverlight session. The campaign website that was developed in Silverlight 4 still needs a home. Because the campaign will only run for a short period of time, the company chose for cloud computing on the Windows Azure platform. Learn how to leverage flexible hosting with automated scaling on Windows Azure, combined with the power of a cloud hosted SQL Azure database to create a cost-effective and responsive web application.
    Speaker: Maarten Balliauw


    15:45 - 16:15

    Coffee break


    16:15 - 17:30

    UX Track


    Web developer track


    A Website's Life: From Sketch to Publishing
    WebMatrix is a new, free, fully featured, easy to install web development tool that helps you build ASP.NET and PHP websites, perform validation, SEO optimization and one-click publishing. My favorite feature however is a new script syntax for ASP.NET called *Razor* which will help you creating dynamic websites incredibly easy. We will spend some time sketching/wireframing our website, doing visual design work in Expression Design and then into experiencing the rich development toolset in WebMatrix.
    - Sketching and Designing with Expression Design
    - Introducing WebMatrix
    - Web App Gallery, SEO Optimization, Publishing
    - ASP.NET Razor Syntax
    Speaker: Arturo Toledo


    Using WebGallery, WebDeploy and IIS Extensions
    Microsoft Web Platform Installer streamlines the installation and provisioning of Web Applications on a developer machine or web server. Web PI with the power and extensibility Internet Information Services is a winning combination. This session shows you how to take advantage of IIS modules like SEO Toolkit, Media Services and more. We will also show you how to streamline the deployment of application and data using WebDeploy.
    Speaker: Luis Alves Martins

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Windows Store – Developer Registration Tips


    In this post you’ll find our top tips for going through Windows Store developer registration, based on the learning’s we’ve had these past few months as we work with Belgian developers to get ready for Windows 8 launch.

    Recommended resources

    Store Portal Dashboard:
    Logging in and accessing the Store Portal, learn about Strong Authorization and account security:

    Must-read resources:


    1. Registration pre-requisites

    • Microsoft account, also called Windows Live ID. I highly recommend you create a new account destined for Windows Store (and Windows Phone Marketplace). See Picking a Microsoft Account for Windows Store.
    • For companies: make sure you create a team account as this login needs to be used by developers when submitting apps to the Store. Something you do not want to happen is an account being linked to a person that one day leaves the company and has all the personal info linked.
    • Have a credit card ready for account verification purposes, even if you have a token to receive a free registration. You’ll need to access your credit card statement to verify your account (both Individual and Company accounts).

    2. Registration process

    The registration process is a seven-step flow in which the following elements are important:

    1. Choose the appropriate account type: Indiviadual or Company. This cannot be changed.
    2. In the Account details for a company: make sure you enter a correct Approver name and e-mail. The e-mail address for the approver must be a company mail, not a free service like or
    3. Steps in the process:
      1. Country and account type: make sure to choose the correct one as this info cannot be changed later
      2. Account info
        Approver info: make sure the contact information of the approver section is valid and have the person check their e-mail for account verification and validation (normally from Symantec). The process of approval via Symantec must be completed before your account gets validated, a required step to publish any app.
      3. Agreement
      4. Price
      5. Payment
      6. Purchase
      7. Thank you


    3. Validating your account

    Before your apps can go through certification your account needs to be validated. Depending on the account type, there are several steps to be completed.

    Account verification

    Both Company and Individual verification is done through a withdrawal on your credit card, which is then reverted directly. The transaction number or amount is used to verify your account. Go to the Dashboard > Subscription page to go through verification.



    Account validation status

    Here’s a good overview of where to find the account status.

    Under the “Profile” link, check the status of your account:

    1 – Developer identity validation – Must be set to “Authorized” before any apps can be certified. (Only Company). Vetting is done by an external party “Symantec/GeoTrust” that will send an e-mail to the Approver e-mail you entered in the process of registration. Make sure Spam folder is checked and followed up.
    You can find more information on the types of proof needed for Belgian accounts through Symantec knowledge base:

    2 – Payout account: the status of your bank account information being complete. Must be complete if you are certifying paid apps, or in-app purchase. (Company and Indidual)

    3 – Tax profile must be set to “Valid” if you are certifying paid apps, or in-app purchase. (Company and Indidual)
    Important to note is that the Tax Profile section should be filled in by a company representative, for example the CEO or Financial director.





    Need help? Go through official support

    If you run into an issue with your developer registration, there are several support options available including community forums and the official support team ready to help you (through chat or e-mail).

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    PhoneGap now fully supports Windows Phone 7 (cross posting)


    My colleague David blogged about support for Windows Phone 7 in PhoneGap released last month.
    Please find more information and resource below or head off to David’s blog.

    Back in September, Microsoft joined Nitobi to announce a Beta of PhoneGap support for Windows Phone Mango, and at the same time committed to continue working with the PhoneGap Open Source project community to help bring full support.

    PhoneGap by Nitobi is an open source mobile framework that enables developers to build applications targeting multiple platforms, by using standard web technologies (HTML5, CSS and JavaScript). This release extends the cross-platform capabilities of PhoneGap, giving more choices to developers in need of a programming environment allowing them to easily deliver the same mobile experience to their users across the various existing and prominent mobile operating systems.  

    In addition to being able to leverage their HTML5 and JavaScript skills to target Windows Phone, developers can now enjoy a selection of PhoneGap Plugins that support social networks and a solid integration into Visual Studio Express for Windows Phone. The plugins are:

    • Facebook JS SDK
    • Twitter/LinkedIn/Windows Live status retriever
    • Bing Maps Launcher
    • LiveTile Update

    This release includes many new features, and you can find more details here


    Other resources:

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    New Windows Phone 7.5 is here: developer update and training events announced


    Mango is here! Yesterday Microsoft released Windows Phone 7.5 to the public.
    As a developer, get ready for new opportunities and some announcements around Windows Phone events in Belgium.

    Below you can find a cross-posting from my colleague David Hernie’s blog:

    Mango Yesterday the Windows Phone team announced that the next version of Windows Phone is ready to go. It’s a major release and it offers hundreds of new features for the phone, marketplace and for developers.  You can find here the official blog post from the Windows Phone team Blog. Microsoft has the goal of making the update available to 98% of phone customers worldwide within four weeks.
    You can check on the status of the update release schedule on the “Where’s My Phone Update?” table on the Windows Phone website. .


    What’s hot for Belgian users?

      We add Internet sharing, Twitter and LinkedIn integration to the People Hub, enhanced communication with Groups and Threaded Messaging, a fast and beautiful Web experience with hardware accelerated IE9, multitasking, more integrated apps for connecting with the people in our lives. In addition, with Mango we have a NL version of phone and marketplace. Moreover, customers can now purchase an app from the Web and that app can be automatically downloaded over-the-air to their Windows Phone 7.5 devices.

    What’s hot for Belgian developers?


    First, we’ve simplified payout and taxes administration by eliminating the need to provide an ITIN on your W-8 to take advantage of a reduced withholding rate. A blog post will follow with the new simplified procedure and we will organize a webcast for your Q&A in November.. Stay tune #wp7be or #wp7dev or follow David

    Then, Microsoft Advertising solution for Windows Phone is now available in Belgium. It means MORE Windows Phone developers can make MORE money from in-app advertising and get paid locally. Want to know how to do it – Follow our WP7 technical training: Oct 25-26 in French at the MIC Mons or Nov 9- 10 in English at the MIC BrusselsCheck here for all WP7 technical training organized in Belgium

    Moreover, you can now publish your Mango apps. One remark – your existing Windows Phone apps are not automatically available for the Mango Marketplace. You need to manually resubmit your app for Mango and NL market

    What should you do?


    Last point, save the date!


    Oct 25- 26 (French version) Nov 9-10 (English version)- Were organizing 2 deep development technical trainings. No marketing stuff, just 2 days to learn how to develop, publish and promote your Windows Phone 7 Apps. We will lend you phones to test your development, help you to promote your app, understand concept of the Live tiles – Cloud integration or how to use the Advertising SDK and get more revenue. It’s free – all details are here : WP7 technical training organized in Belgium

    Nov 3 – We’re organizing a big event in Belgium. “The UX tour” all you want to know about Design, HTML5, Web & Phone with international speakers and latest technology trends. Stay tuned, more info is coming..

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Joining the Windows 8 App Race? Win Visual Studio headphones and Asus tablets


    Join the App Race and win!

    We want to give you a push in the back to develop great applications – join the Windows 8 App Race and win:

    Windows 8 App Race

    How to win

    Your app(s) need to be published between April 1 and June 15, 2013. Complete the contest form(s) on

    There is no limit to the number of entries you can submit but each entry must be substantially unique and different. The date and time of the first and fifth application as part of the entry submitted in a particular timeframe will determine the winners of the tablets. Note: this contest is only open for residents from Belgium and Luxembourg. Please read the full terms & conditions of this contest before entering. Questions? Contact us

    We’re looking forward to see your apps shine in the Store … and who knows soon on your brand new Asus tablet!

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    Turn up the heat this summer with your Windows 8 app – events and support


    Our MSDN Belgium & Luxembourg team has been preparing some stuff to keep you busy this summer. Join us at hackathons or online!

    It's summertime! Time for all of us to throw ourselves into something new, fun and rewarding. With Windows 8 around the corner, now is the time to start building apps!
    Will your app be the next big thing? Grasp that first-mover advantage and make sure your app is in the Windows Store by the time Windows 8 hits the market.
    We're here to help you get your app ready with a bunch of support tools ranging from online training to App-a-thons, App Clinics and App Excellence Labs.

    Follow the 4 steps to getting your app published and start building!

    Build your app now! 
    Four simple steps to your app in
    Windows Store:

    Four simple steps

    Summer App-a-thons

    We have 2 App-a-thons planned this summer: join us in Blankenberge (12 July) or Antwerp Zaventem (8 August) and start building your Windows 8 Metro Style App!
    You can win fantastic prizes too: Xbox 360 + Kinect, Connections Gift Vouchers, ...




    Correction: the app-a-thon for 8 August is taking place at the Microsoft Office in Zaventem, no longer in Antwerp due to location issues.

    Want to stay in the know about all things Windows 8 app development?
    Sign up now for the (Belgian & Luxembourg) MSDN newsletter!

    Your MSDN team.

  • Katrien's MSDN Blog

    .NET Framework 3.5 Enhancements Training Kit (April Content Preview) available


    The Visual Studio & .NET Framework evangelism team has just released the .NET Framework 3.5 Enhancements Training Kit. This is a preview containing 6 extensive labs on the following subjects:

    • ADO.NET Data Services
    • ADO.NET Entity Framework
    • ASP.NET AJAX History
    • ASP.NET Dynamic Data
    • ASP.NET Silverlight controls


    Although the .NET 3.5 Extensions have not yet been released this will give you a jump start on the enhancements. New content will still be added (screencasts, demos, presentations) by the time .NET 3.5 Extensions RTM.

    Check out Jonathan's blog for more details.

  • 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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