Jerry Nixon

Microsoft Developer Evangelist

Posts
  • 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

    15 Easy Ways to Screw Up Your Next User Group Talk. And, a little advice.

    In college, a millennia ago, I spent a summer serving Philadelphia’s inner city children with Bart Campolo. As a leader, he was an effervescent, tireless motivator; an excellent writer as much a speaker. As he verbalized his process he forever transformed...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Free C# Training for Beginners and Forgetful Experts

    Last year, I sat down with my colleague and friend Daren May for to create a Microsoft Virtual Academy training series that beginner developers could use to get a solid introduction to C#, called Programming in C#. This course steams through the myriad...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Vanity domains and Outlook.com

    Outlook.com is awesome. It is super-fast with hyper-advanced features that sort of make Yahoo!, Gmail, and AOL a great fit for your grandparents, but not you. Not tech-savvy you. What’s better is Outlook.com is free. Now you get an awesome web, comprehensive...
  • Jerry Nixon

    It’s all free! Here’s $500 for your user group, all the swag you want, and free Facebook advertising. No catch. Really.

    Microsoft has a kind of love affair with its developer community. As a result, the Microsoft developer community worldwide is the largest and most cohesive community you could imagine. It was Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer, who said, “Developers, developers...
  • Jerry Nixon

    The most Comprehensive Blend for Visual Studio training you will ever receive – for Free; you’re welcome!

    November 2013, immediately after the release of Visual Studio 2013, I sat down for an all-day session with Unni Ravindranathan, the Senior Program Manager for Blend. Who better to walk through, not the new features of Blend, but all the core features...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Make it snow with XAML

    XAML is a very flexible technology platform. This time of year, some of the nicest things you can do is release apps that contain the character of the season. Since I am in Colorado, a lot of that character surrounds the weather. Snow is an easy ambiance...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Decorate your tree with XAML.

    Next week is Christmas. I know most of you are scrambling to find the perfect gift for that special someone. Here’s an idea: a custom app built just for her. What could she love more than vector-based graphics on a touch screen? How she’ll remember this...
  • Jerry Nixon

    The two ways to handle orientation in your Windows 8.1 app

    imageAh, elegance. Handling orientation basically means adjusting your app to account for real estate changes when the user pivots their device from Landscape to Portrait, or when the user adjusts your app’s width.

    In Windows 8.0, there were four possible orientations: FullView (1366x768), FillView (1024x768), SnapView (320x768), and Portrait (768x1366). In Windows 8.1 there are two possible orientations: Landscape (width > height) and Portrait (width < height).

    CAVEAT: In either case, screen size (inches) can vary across devices. An increase in screen size (not to be confused with resolution), introduces new (or less) real estate for your app’s UX. As a result, developers should build responsive layouts to handle increases and decreases in screen real estate.

    Nostalgia: Yonder SnapView?

    Kids today don’t even know what we’re talking about when we say SnapView. We might as well be talking vacuum tubes and punch cards. So, where’s SnapView? Here’s the secret: it’s still there! In Windows 8.1 the minimum app width is 500 pixels. However, with a simple setting in your app’s manifest the 320 pixel width comes right back! You just don’t have SnapView enum anymore.

    ...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Over $100 million available to purchase Windows apps this holiday

    imageLike most retailers, the Windows Store and Windows Phone Store see a spike in shopping activity around the holidays. Last year holiday sales of paid apps grew 40% over baseline, and we expect an even more robust Holiday 2013 due to an even larger base of Windows and Windows Phone users with more ways to pay for apps.

    This holiday season we’re launching Windows Store gift cards, making it easy for consumers to purchase apps from the Windows Store or Windows Phone Store.

    ...
  • Jerry Nixon

    XAML: How to add ItemsSource to the Windows 8.1 MenuFlyout

    With Windows 8.0, Flyout options for developers were constrained to 1) custom development to get what you wanted or 2) using my Settings and Flyout helpers to shortcut the custom work, or using Tim’s Callisto Flyout to do it for you. They all worked,...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Students can make real cash this holiday season on Windows 8.

    Introducing the Windows 8 Holiday App Challenge! Build an App Build your Windows 8 App and publish it to the Windows Store. Submit the app link HERE to be eligible to win a $50 gift card. Promote the App Promote your app and get 100 downloads. Find tips...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Windows 8.1: How to use Visual States in your XAML App

    There’s no question that XAML’s résumé has a few items in bold. It’s ability to data bind sets it apart from any other technology. It ubiquity across the Microsoft portfolio of products establishes it as the go-to for developers. But, perhaps it is visual...
  • Jerry Nixon

    3 inevitable things; a glimpse into the future of our industry

    In our industry, the future is uncertain. As technology gets more complex, employment seems assured. But as technology gets more complex, perhaps a unified theory of technology will emerge, wiping away the need for keyboard monkeys pounding out apps....
  • 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.

    ...
  • Jerry Nixon

    My XAML Contribution to the Star Trek Universe

    image

    After several painstaking minutes, I was able to create a fully-vectored rendition of the Star Trek 2009 Enterprise as rendered by Alain Rivard. It’s a beautiful image and mine is a close approximation. Anyway, I wanted to have something complex to put into my new Windows 8.1 hub template without having to include an image in the project. This is where I ended up. Mostly, I think, because this image is my current desktop background. You want it? Here’s the code. Live long and… you know.

    ...
  • 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

    Walkthrough: Is your Windows 8 app too square and boxy? Here are some options.

    There are some really great features in XAML that some developers either 1) do not know they are there or 2) never leverage. Well, in this article, I want to talk about techniques you can leverage to move your Windows app away from the tempting, yet commonplace...
  • Jerry Nixon

    Windows 8.1 design principles hand developers back their sanity

    imageWhen the computer mouse was new, it was simple to use but unfamiliar to users. As a result, user manuals could not say “click the red X”. Instead, they had to say, “move the mouse on your desk to control the pointer on your screen”. The idea of the mouse was new – the conversation had to start several steps back. After the mouse was successfully socialized and established as an input modality, user manuals could confidently say “click the red X”.

    ...
  • 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

    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

    Windows 8.1 says, “Forget all that Design Stuff from Windows 8.0”

    WHAT DESIGNERS HAD BETTER KNOW ABOUT WINDOWS 8.1 Let’s be perfectly clear, the Windows Design Guidelines in Windows 8.1 are, at a high-level, identical to those in Windows 8.0. However, in their practical and tactical guidance they are so different, that...
  • Jerry Nixon

    This is the most important control you may ever use

    There are two version of PianoTime for Windows 8 – a successful title from a Colorado publisher. The free version sponsored by ads, and the $3.48 ad free version. Do people purchase their way out of ads? Yes, they do. Do most people. No, they don’t. So...
  • Jerry Nixon

    5 things you must do BEFORE you publish your app.

    You have your idea. You are developing your app. It’s coming along great. You can see the finish line. But do you need to do more than just develop your app? Here are 10 things you should do before you publish.

    image

    ...
  • 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...
Page 1 of 10 (237 items) 12345»