VIsual Studio – The Undocumented API

Tag: VIsual Studio

Twist My ARM – Automating Azure using PowerShell

I released my book, Microservice, IoT and Azure, in October of 2015. Within 2 weeks, the Azure PowerShell code samples were out of date. This is a testament to the velocity at which Microsoft is updating both the services and the tools for Azure.

While the concepts in the book are still relevant, the code repository that I had released became out of date quickly. In order to rectify this situation, I recently created a new code repository that leverages the advancements in Azure PowerShell as well as showcases the patterns and practices for end-to-end IoT solutions that leverage IoT Hub.

The new code repository is located here on GitHub.

This content provides foundational knowledge in how to architect and implement an IoT solution using Windows 10 Core IoT hardware devices and Azure IoT Hub and Stream Analytics. Both Device to Cloud and Cloud to Device communication patterns are covered.

At the conclusion of going through the hands-on lab, you will have provisioned an Azure environment using PowerShell that contains Storage, Service Bus, DocumentDb, IoT Hub, Stream Analytics and API Management and a custom microservices for provisioning devices. You will also develop a Windows 10 Core IoT application that sends telemetry and receives incoming commands as well as develop a real-time dashboard that displays incoming telemetry and has the ability to send commands to the remote device. Device Provisioning, IoT Hub monitoring and techniques for applying dynamic business rules to real-time streams is covered.

In this article, I am going to highlight a few interesting Azure PowerShell and Azure Resource Manager techniques that I learned along the way while creating this content. Note that all the code snippets are drawn from the code repository here.

Read More

Video: Microservices, IoT and Azure

I recently recorded a session for the Collab365 virtual conference that is an overview of my recently released book, Microservices, IoT and Azure. The book provides practical guidance for adopting a high velocity, continuous delivery process to create reliable, scalable, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions that are designed and built using a microservice architecture, deployed to the Azure cloud, and managed through automation. Microservices, IoT, and Azure offers software developers, architects, and operations engineers’ step-by-step directions for building SaaS applications—applications that are available 24×7, work on any device, scale elastically, and are resilient to change–through code, script, exercises, and a working reference implementation.

bookcover-small

A working definition of microservices is provided and I contrast this approach with traditional monolithic Layered Architecture. A fictitious, home-biomedical startup is used to demonstrate microservice architecture and automation capabilities for cross-cutting and business services as well as connected device scenarios for Internet of Things (IoT). Several Azure PaaS services are detailed including Storage, SQL Database, DocumentDb, Redis Cache, Cloud Services, Web API’s, API Management, IoT Hub, IoT Suite, Event Hub, and Stream Analytics. Finally the book looks to the future and examines Service Fabric to see how microservices are becoming the de facto approach to building reliable software in the cloud.

The video combines presentation with live demos that will give you insight into the concepts laid out in the book and the reference implementation that is used to demonstrate those concepts.

You will learn :

  1. Why is microservice architecture a compelling pattern for cloud-native applications
  2. What are microservices and how do they compare to traditional monolithic layered architecture
  3. How microservices are used in Internet of Things (IoT) and Big Data Analytics solutions
  4. How to use PowerShell to automate microservice development, test, staging and deployment

Microservices, IoT, and Azure: Leveraging DevOps and Microservice Architecture to deliver SaaS Solutions is on sale now!

Click to reserve your copy today!

Book: Microservices, IoT and Azure Now Available

51oTem3JasL__SX327_BO1,204,203,200_

Order on Amazon

This book provides practical guidance for adopting a high velocity, continuous delivery process to create reliable, scalable, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions that are designed and built using a microservice architecture, deployed to the Azure cloud, and managed through automation. Microservices, IoT, and Azure offers software developers, architects, and operations engineers’ step-by-step directions for building SaaS applications—applications that are available 24×7, work on any device, scale elastically, and are resilient to change–through code, script, exercises, and a working reference implementation.

The book provides a working definition of microservices and contrasts this approach with traditional monolithic Layered Architecture. A fictitious, homebiomedical startup is used to demonstrate microservice architecture and automation capabilities for cross-cutting and business services as well as connected device scenarios for Internet of Things (IoT). Several Azure PaaS services are detailed including Storage, SQL Database, DocumentDb, Redis Cache, Cloud Services, Web API’s, API Management, IoT Hub, IoT Suite, Event Hub, and Stream Analytics. Finally the book looks to the future and examines Service Fabric to see how microservices are becoming the de facto approach to building reliable software in the cloud.

What you’ll learn

  • What microservices are and why are they’re a compelling architecture pattern for SaaS applications
  • How to design, develop, and deploy microservices using Visual Studio, PowerShell, and Azure
  • Microservice patterns for cross-cutting concerns and business capabilities
  • Microservice patterns for Internet of Things and big data analytics solutions using IoT Hub, Event Hub, and Stream Analytics
  • Techniques for automating microservice provisioning, building, and deployment
  • What Service Fabric is and how it’s the future direction for microservices on Microsoft Azure

Who this book is for

Software Application Architects, .NET Developers, Database Admins and DevOps engineers. The sample code provided is a combination of C# and PowerShell.

Nokia DVLUP Day NYC – Register to Attend

square DVLUP day logo

REGISTER

Overview

Learn to make amazing Windows Phone apps at Nokia DVLUP Day in New York City on Saturday March 22, 2014 and win big prizes just for participating. Join Nokia Developer Ambassadors Nick Landry & Lance McCarthy, as well as several Microsoft Technical Evangelists, as they provide hands-on Windows Phone development training in a dynamic and fun event. Whether you’re a seasoned developer or barely know how to code, you will walk away with the ability to write a mobile app.

With full sample source code and step-by-step instructions, you will learn how to make an app or game from scratch, or learn new techniques to enhance your current apps & games. No matter what you want to build – an app or a game – or what your programming skill level is, there are four individual tracks to choose from, which means there is something for everyone.

DVLUP Day is a unique community event that combines presentations by Windows Phone experts along with a hands-on workshop to help attendees get started on their apps. BRING YOUR LAPTOP! Work with our experts, get started on your app or game, publish it within 3 weeks after the event and get a free Windows Phone 8 device!

Location

DVLUP Day New York City will be held on March 22, 2014 at the new Microsoft Office in Manhattan at:

11 Times Square, 6th Floor

New York, NY 10036

Click here for a map and directions

What You Will Receive

As an attendee of DVLUP Day NYC you will be eligible for the following:

  • A Windows Phone 8 device. Every attendee who publishes a new app or game within 3 weeks of the event will get a new Nokia Lumia Windows Phone 8 device.
  • A heavy-duty DVLUP backpack. The first 150 registered attendees to sign-in the morning of the event will receive a swag bag full of goodies, even the backpack itself is worth $89 (it’s a Wenger, Swiss Gear TSA friendly laptop bag). We’ll have swag, t-shirts and other goodies for everyone too.
  • A Nokia Developer Offers token. This is worth hundreds of dollars and contains the following:
    • Microsoft Windows Phone DevCenter account (this is your portal to publish apps to the Windows Phone Store and also unlocks physical devices for building apps)
    • Telerik UI for Windows Phone license
    • Infragistics NetAdvantage for Windows Phone license
    • BugSense Performance Monitoring solution for Windows Phone (3 months)
  • $50 AdDuplex credit (approx. 20,000 ad impressions). AdDuplex is an ideal network to cross-promote your app with others. You’ll learn about AdDuplex in the App Marketing & Advertising lightning talk.

There will be multiple random drawings for attendees to win a Nokia Lumia “Hero” device of their choice (Lumia 1020, 928, 925, 920) and other prizes. In addition to the phones, we’ll be giving away other prizes from Nokia & Microsoft, including JBL PowerUp Bluetooth Speakers, Xbox ONE and Xbox 360 games, software licenses, gadgets and more. The first drawing will be during the Lightning Talks after the day of training for all attendees. Another drawing will be held near the end of the event in the evening for the attendees who stayed to code and get help during the hands-on workshop.

Breakfast, snacks, lunch and dinner will be served. Come see the latest Windows Phone & Windows 8 devices in our device bar, and connect with other developers in the community

Register for free today! This is a unique event you just can’t miss!

DVLUP Day NYC Agenda – March 22, 2014

  • 8:00am – Registration Opens: Continental breakfast & coffee will be served.
  • 9:00am – Opening Session: Introduction from Nokia, meet the experts, housekeeping.

*** 15 min break ***

  • 10:00am – Windows Phone Breakout Sessions: 4 tracks
    • o Track 1: App Development – Getting Started & App Studio
    • o Track 2: App Development – Maps, Imaging & Cloud Services
    • o Track 3: Game Development – Getting Started with Unity
    • o Track 4: Game Development – Porting Unity Games to Windows Phone
    • 12:30pm – Lunch Break
    • 1:30pm – Breakout Sessions Continue (same tracks)

*** 15 min break ***

  • 3:00pm –Lightning Talks with Q&A
    • o App Design & User Experience
    • o Windows Phone Packaging & App Store Submission
    • o App Marketing & Advertising
    • 4:00pm – Hands-on workshop begins – All staff on hand to help you get started
    • 6:30pm – Dinner Break
    • 9:30pm – Event Ends

Track 1: App Development – Getting Started & App Studio

Learn how to write Windows Phone apps with XAML/C# and explore the amazing APIs available to you. See first-hand how to use the powerful tools, Visual Studio and Blend, to produce great apps with amazing UIs. You will also learn how to generate a store-ready Windows Phone app in under an hour using Microsoft App Studio. Learn how to get started with App Studio and have a store ready app without having to write a single line of code. Then take a dive into the downloadable source code to discover how to customize your app further.

Track 2: App Development – Maps, Imaging & Cloud Development

So you’re already experienced with Windows Phone app development and you want to take your apps to the next level. Join us for a deeper dive into some specific SDKs for Windows Phone developers. You’ll learn about location services, maps and how to call Geospatial Information Services (GIS) from your apps. We’ll also explore the Nokia Imaging SDK, letting you easily add advanced imaging effects and filters when dealing with photos in your apps. Finally, we’ll see how your apps can reach leverage Windows Azure to create a custom back-end to store structured and unstructured data in the cloud and deliver a compelling user experiences. We’ll discuss how you can use Windows Azure to extend the on-line presence of your app by building additional channels to showcase your application and interact with your end-users.

Track 3: Game Development – Getting Started with Unity

Learn how to make fun games for Windows Phone using Unity. In this track you will learn how to code casual 2D games for Windows Phone using one of the best game engines and toolset – used by Indies and Pros alike. And the best part is it’s free! Game development is one of the most fun and rewarding forms of software development. If you’ve ever considered writing games, this is your chance to get started.

Track 4: Game Development – Porting Unity Games to Windows Phone

If you’re already an experienced Unity developer and have published games on other platforms like iOS, Android, PC or others, come join this session to learn how you can reach a whole new audience of gamers on the Windows Phone platform. Learn about adapting your game for touch controls, how to deal with Windows Phone specific considerations, and we’ll even help you to bring your game to the Windows Store too.

Developer Environment

Windows Phone 8 development requires Windows 8.x Pro to install the SDK and emulator. If you’re running Windows 7, you can still build Windows Phone 7.8 apps using the 7.1 SDK. If you’re using a Mac, you can create a Windows 8.x Pro virtualized environment using Parallels Desktop or VMWare Fusion.

All attendees can build Windows Phone applications using a web browser and Microsoft App Studio, as covered in Track 1.

For more information on getting started, visit http://www.ageofmobility.com/?page_id=961.

Summary

DVLUP Day was a huge hit with developers in 2013, with stops in Boston, Tampa, Sunnyvale and Vancouver. This is going to be an awesome day in New York City and I look forward to seeing you all there. Just for showing up and learning, you get hooked up. Just for publishing an app, you get hooked up. Mark off that Saturday March 22, register now and come join us.

REGISTER NOW

DVLUP Day New York is completely free to attend but spaces are limited, so make sure you register your interest now.

You will need to have your DVLUP account ID ready. If you haven’t got a DVLUP account yet, just go to http://bit.ly/GOVuPN and sign up now. It will only take 2 minutes!

Any questions?

If there’s anything you’d like to know either before or after you register, email us right away.

Coding in the Cloud: Attend a Windows Azure Dev Camp

251760_azureBanner_728x90

Spend the day with Windows Azure and leave with code running in the cloud.

Available in select cites, these free, one-day instructor-led workshops let you roll up your sleeves and get hands-on with Microsoft’s latest development tools and technologies.

You will learn how you can leverage the cloud for development, testing and deploying your solutions. The hands-on labs will focus on:

  • Windows Azure Websites and Virtual Machines Using ASP.NET & Microsoft SQL Server
  • Deploying Cloud Services in Windows Azure
  • Updating an App to a Modern Architecture
  • Configuring and testing a Modern Application.

All languages are welcome. With Windows Azure, you can use practically any language, framework, or tool to build or move existing applications into the cloud.

Register today for the event near you.

App Anatomy: Virtuoso, a Music Sequencer

Overview

Virtuoso is a music sequencer for Windows 8.1. The app provides a fun and easy to use interface that allows you to compose original music using drums, bass, strings, vibes and guitar. Virtuoso will play 16 beats of music in a continuous loop. You can interact with the sequencer in real time changing notes, tempo and instrument volumes. You can save your songs to disk for playback at a later time.

Screen2

Musicians can use Virtuoso as a scratch pad for their musical ideas and parents can use Virtuoso to teach their children the basics of music; rhythm, harmony and melody.

Features

  • 5 Instruments, 65 Voices
  • 16 Beat Sequencer
  • Change tempo and mix instruments in real time
  • Play and Pause control
  • Save your songs to disk
  • Built in Tutorial

This article will cover the following topics:

  • Class Structure
  • Playing Audio using the SharpDX.XAudio2 API
  • Background Threads
  • Updating the UI from a background thread using the Dispatcher
  • App State File IO using XML Serialization
  • Deploying files at runtime using Zip File Decompression

Read More

Continuous Innovation Applied – The Fast Path to the Windows Store

The beginning is the most important part of the work – PLATO, The Republic

For many developers participating in the app economy is an exercise in learning to be a startup. You want to create a product (app), launch it into the marketplace (Windows Store), drive sales (downloads), receive feedback from customers (ratings and reviews) , make improvements and release the next version of your app. This is a cyclical process that is explained in great detail in the The Lean Startup by Eric Reis.<

One of the concepts that Eric lays out in his book is the idea of Continuous Innovation. This is a 3 step approach to creating, publishing and marketing your product.

image

Continuous Innovation

One of the key tenants of Continuous Innovation is to focus on what is called a Minimal Viable Product (MVP). The goal of a minimal viable product is to get through the Continuous Innovation cycle  as quickly as possible with minimal effort.

Gone are the days of yearlong development efforts followed by the big product launches. In the app economy you need to build fast, collect feedback from your customers and iterate on the next version. You need to test both the technical as well as the business hypothesis and implement features that customers want and fail fast on the things that are not driving downloads.

By starting out with a Minimal Viable App and moving through the Continuous Innovation cycle quickly, you will learn the entire process of how to launch a product, market that product, gather customer feedback and iterate on the next version. This skill set is what every developer needs to learn to be successful going forward in our industry,

Getting Started

For many developers coming up with a product idea can be daunting. The key to successful apps is typically tied to the richness of the data that you provide to your customer along with the set of features you provide for working with that dat

To help you with the process of getting an app in the store using open data API’s and learning how to apply Continuous Innovation the Technical Evangelist team here at Microsoft has created a set of Windows App Starter Kits. These starter kits are based on open data API’s which give you the rich data set you need to create a compelling application or a mashup.

To get started let me introduce you to the wonderful world of Open Data API’s.

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going. – Jim Rohn

The Wonderful World of API’s

Using open data API’s are a great way to get started creating compelling apps. The internet it turns out is source of rich content. Who knew! You can get a sense of the vast numbers of open data API’s by visiting API Hub or Programmable Web. There are thousands of API’s covering all industry segments and topics.

APIhub

Upon investigation you will soon learn that not all API’s are created equal. There are differences in quality, speed, call thresholds, authentication and so on. Spending some time to validate API’s of interest is well served. Most APIs require the developer to register and request a Developer Key. Some API’s are throttled, limited to a certain number of calls a day or second. Many are free but some are not. Here is a list of criteria that you can use to validate API’s of interest:

  • Developer Key Required
  • API protocol – REST or SOAP?
  • Authentication Required – OAuth, SessionID, etc.
  • Performance – how well does the API perform?
  • Service Level Agreement (SLA) – is the API always available?
  • Payload format – JSON, XML, other
  • Throttled – If yes what is the limit?
  • Free or Pay
  • Is the API mashable – can the data be used as input to another API?

Last but not least is to read the Terms and Conditions of the API provider. The details of how often you can call the API and other usage rules such as a requirement to display their logo and to have that logo link to their site will be documented. If you are going to use an API read the T’s and C’s thoroughly before investing hours of development.

For more detailed coverage of API Basics see Stacy Mulcahy’s post here.

Windows App Kits

In order to streamline your ability to leverage API’s to create compelling apps for Windows, the US Technical Evangelist team has created a portfolio of 22 Windows 8 and 12 Windows Phone 8 Starter Kits that you can use to create your minimal viable product.

image

There are kits that provide solutions for Windows 8, Windows Phone and in either C# or HTML5/JS. The Chuck Norris Starter Kit also provides a VB implementation. There is also a starter kit for those who want to learn how to leverage Azure Mobile Services.

Each Kit comes with one or more Visual Studio solutions, a README.MD and associated blog posts that document how to customize each kit. There are also several kits that have corresponding Video tutorials on Channel 9.

Here are examples of apps that have been created using these starter kits: