Windows 8 2-day Camp - Content

Thanks to all of the attendees of our Windows 8 2-day Camp and Hackathon last week!

It was an exhausting but excited couple of days and some attendees left with Samsung Series 7 slates, an XBox console, a bunch of XBox games, and more.

The Windows 8 content from day 1 will be available soon on Channel 9. Until then, I promised that I would upload the content from my session and the content from Bart De Smet’s session on Reactive Extensions.

My Content - Windows 8 Contracts

My session was an introduction to integrating the Windows 8 experience into your app by implementing the Windows 8 contracts. We looked at Search, Share, Settings, the FilePicker, and PlayTo. The code is extremely simple and intended to get you in the door. Let me know if you have any questions… (40.04 kb)

Bart De Smet’s Content – Reactive Extensions

Bart De Smet was a guest presenter on day 2 on the topic of Reactive Extensions. He presented mostly JavaScript examples, but the content below includes all of the .NET examples as well. If you’re not familiar with Reactive Extensions, I think you should get acquainted, and Bart’s slides are very well made and helpful in coming to an understanding.

Reactive (6.53 mb)

BlockMover Sample from Jake and Sam

Thanks to everyone that showed up to last Friday’s session on JavaScript game development in Windows 8. I really appreciated the information and demonstration that Jake and Sam presented. I hope it was as helpful for you too.

I said I’d post the sample code that they used, and here it is. You will need to go to and purchase the library if you’d like to use this, but if you’re actually making games then it’s a small cost to consider.

Enjoy! (346.49 kb)

The Ocho

There’s nothing better for learning a new platform, framework, or language than getting together with other people. Shared experience brings not only technical know-how, but also know-how-not-to! I always say that our careers are made of three things: education, inspiration, and experience. You need all three. Education can be rote. You get it from books, videos, classes, etc. Inspiration is the energy and motivation for doing what you’re doing. If you’re not working on a project that is exciting and has the potential to change the world, you might just be a bit bored. Experience then is what you get when you try to do it over and over. You succeed, you fail, but each time you learn how to and how not to do things.

Meeting together with other people is magic because it’s an opportunity to get some of all three of these. You get some training. You get inspired by the content and what others are doing with it. And you get to try things and get experience and you also get to benefit from the experience of others.

So that’s why I started The Ocho. The Ocho is a user group for Windows 8 developers. Whether you’re beginner or advanced, go to and sign up to visit a local meeting. You’ll learn a lot and you’ll have some fun too. Tell your friends about it, so we can build it up even more.

See you at The Ocho!

Gen Appathon!

If you’re anywhere close to Redmond, Washington, you’ve got to attend the Gen Appathon! It’s on November 9 in Building 33 on the Microsoft Campus. It’s going to be a big hackathon with great prizes and we’re going to have a lot of experts in the room helping you with Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 apps!

Get all the information you need and register at

See you there!

Big Windows Developer Event in LA!

If you are in the Los Angeles area Monday event or if you can get there, you should stop by the Nokia Theater Live next to the LA Convention Center and get a whirlwind tour of Windows 8 from a developers perspective!

Everything from breakfast to dinner will be information straight from Microsoft to you. Then, after dinner, you’ll be joining us for Coding with the Experts where you walk through an excellent series of tutorials to create a full-fledged Windows 8 app. You’re guaranteed to walk away with skills.

I personally will be presenting on the tooling you’ll use to create Windows 8 applications: Visual Studio 11 and Blend. I’ll also do a presentation on designing Windows 8 applications including a complete design scenario, so it will be theory and practice in one presentation.

Come introduce yourself to me when I’m not on stage. I’d love to meet you. See you there.

Go to to get all the details. See you there!

App Accelerator Resources

To everyone who joined @mjconnection and I (@codefoster) at the Windows 8 App Accelerator the last 3 days, thanks for bringing all the energy, questions, and app ideas! I know I had a great time.

I promised everyone that I would provide a list of resources that we brought up in class. If you think of any more that I missed, feel free to leave it in a comment and I’ll merge it into this list.

Keep me posted on the progress of your apps!

Metro Tile Sources

The Noun Project - this is a great collection of icons that represent things… you know… nouns

Icon Finder - find icons on the web and get either the PNG or the ICO file - a cache of free glyphs that work well with Windows 8 Metro style tiles and art

The XAML Project - more

SyncFusion Metro Studio - more (broken)

Visual Studio Add-Ins

Debugger Canvas - use this to visualize your code and your call stack while you’re debugging. It even supports visualization of multi-threaded stacks and recursive functions.

Bug Aid - some more great help visualizing C# entities while you’re debugging

ReSharper 7 EAP - perhaps the biggest source of developer joy you can ask for

Art Tools - this is an awesome vector based graphics tool. If you’re still using a bitmap based image editing tool for generating app art, you should stop in your tracks and learn to use vector.

Kuler - a color palette picker. - again - again

App Stats

None of these support Windows 8 yet of course, but they were mentioned in class so I thought I should include them…

App Annie