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Last night was the first meeting of the WIndows Phone User Group in Cardiff. That meant me hot-footing it from Reading to catch a train in Swindon before hopping on the Baycar bus to take me straight to the beautiful Wales Millenium Centre.
It was certainly worth it. Besides the great turnout and lively discussion, there were presentations by Mike Hole and Paul Foster as well as demos by Matt Lacey and Trevor Daniel.
Mike talked about his work at Sequence developing the Snow & Rock Pathfinder application, the challenges they faced, how they implemented features such as map rendering, offline and using Windows and SQL Azure as well as doing an impromptu demo of Nuget.
I’d head of Nuget but hadn’t used it. Mike sold it to me within about 2mins.
Matt took to the floor to take about copy & paste and his demo showed a mechanism that can be used today to implement c&p even across cooperating applications. It’s an interesting proof-of-concept and I’ve seen the same technique discussed on our internal aliases. That said it comes with caveats and I think Matt would be first to agree that it’s more a case of proving what can be done rather than a technique for general adoption. He’s put the code up on Codeplex at http://wp7clipboard.codeplex.com/.
Trevor gave a great demo of his Taxiroute app for WP7. He has collated information from all UK local authorities and built a fare calculation service that will determine the correct taxi fare for a given route. The application will calculate the route, distance and fare as well as suggesting local taxi firms to come and pick you up.
It’s a slick application with many nice features. It reminds me of SayNoTo0870 where the app hides the enormous amount of research that’s been done just to be able to offer the service.
Finally, Paul took the stage to talk about undocumented features and experiments you can do with an unlocked phone and a curious mind. He was quick to point out that these applications would never make it through certification. Needless to say Paul was his usual enthusiastic self and did a number of very cool demos.
The next WPUG meeting is in London on March 23rd. Stick it in your diary now before you forget.
[Photo credit of Millenium Centre: http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisbewick/]