Monthly Archives: September 2012

Windows Store is open!

I’m a little late reporting this, but I’m very excited. I’ve got two of my own Win 8 apps partially completed. Thanks to a design review from Clark Sell, I’ve got a few more changes to make that will add some great value! (Check out his other site here – not here.)

Windows Store app submission is open to all registered Windows Store developers – individuals and companies. Join the excitement and become part of the vibrant community of app and game developers for Windows. Create your Store developer account and submit your apps and games today!

So, where do I start?! Right here: https://appdev.microsoft.com/StorePortals

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The New Nokia Flagship

The new Nokia phones powered by Microsoft Windows Phone 8 have been announced. While some seem to be less than excited about it, I think it looks great! The only thing I don’t like is the lack of a release date. Sad smile

Well, what does it look like?

I have the HTC Arrive (Sprint) and I really like the slide-and-tilt keyboard, but it looks like the trend across the industry is touch keyboards. If that’s all I’m going to get, I guess a bigger screen is a good thing. The screen on the 920 is 4.5” and has a resolution of 1280×768. (It wasn’t that long ago that I had to develop web applications on the assumption that a user’s desktop monitor had an 800×600 resolution!)

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In my experience with the HTC Evo, I realized all too late that a big screen came with a battery that rarely lasted a day at work. This one claims to get 400 hours of 3G standby time, 10 hours of 3G talk time, 67 hours of music, or 6 hours of video. Six hours of video sounds awesome! I may be able to safely use this as I hop from city to city in our upcoming Visual Studio 2012 launch events.

It comes in four colors: yellow, red, white, and black.

Appearances aside…

It has 32GB of storage, but its unclear to me if it will support additional storage via MicroSD cards.

Like many of the up-and-coming Windows phones, it has a dual-core 1.5 Ghz processors. I’m not sure why I would need a dual-core processor in my phone and I would gladly sacrifice it in exchange for battery life if that was possible.

This new phone will also support Near Field Communication. I’m probably being a bit naïve, but I think this is the coolest thing. (I long for the day I can get rid of my wallet completely! I’d prefer a chip under my skin, but I guess it’s baby steps.)

It will have the ability to charge wirelessly. You just set it down on the included charging station. Check out the JBL PowerUp Wireless Charging Speaker for Nokia where you can listen to your phone’s music while it charges.

This one is listed at 8.7 megapixels for the main camera with 4x digital zoom. It has a front-facing camera. It also advertises a PureView camera phone intended to be “blur-free”. I don’t get excited by cameras and I’ll probably never understand what a megapixel really is.

And software?

It comes with the same great Microsoft software I use every day, but it now has Nokia Maps, Nokia Music Store, and Nokia Mix Radio. I haven’t looked into these last two, but I assume they are separate from my Zune/Xbox Music Pass and so I probably won’t need them.

I hear great things about Nokia Maps and the Nokia City Lens augmented reality feature looks like it might be useful as well.

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Learn more at the official site here.

CHALLENGE: Enter a comment below defining the word ‘megapixel’ in simple, but correct teams.

They Listened…

It may not be the most prompt response, but you can’t say the Visual Studio team doesn’t listen to their customers!

On Sept. 6th, 2012, Matthew Johnson and Andrew Sarratori released a new Visual Studio Extension called the Visual Studio 2012 Color Theme Editor. You can find it here. Great work, guys!

It has some prebuilt themes and allows you to modify the fonts and colors of Visual Studio to your liking. I’ve included a few screenshots below so you can check it out.

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I like a readable UI, but some developers feel REALLY strongly about the colors and contrast. Have fun!!