Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Working with IAsync* WinRT Methods

Working with IAsync* WinRT Methods

Metro style applications built on the Windows Runtime are especially sensitive to any delays in the UI thread. Users will immediately notice when the UI trails their touch input and “doesn’t stick to their finger.” Animations that stutter and skip are immediately visible. Any lag in processing negatively affects the experience and the perception of not only your application, but the platform as a whole. A good way to help ensure your application doesn’t get into this state is to make long-running calls asynchronous. In this article, based on chapter 3 of Windows 8 XAML in Action, author Pete Brown discusses the Windows Runtime approach to asynchronous code.

The Windows Runtime was built with the concept of asynchronous operations. It was also built with the idea that these asynchronous operations must work not only for C#, but also for JavaScript, C++, and any number of other, very different languages. For those reasons, the team didn’t take a dependency on the Task Parallel Library in .NET, but, instead, created an interface-based approach consistent with the rest of the Windows Runtime.

The Windows.Foundation namespace contains the types and interfaces required to support asynchronous functions in WinRT. Every asynchronous operation implements, at a minimum, the IAsyncInfo interface. Like most programming problems, there is an easy but limited way to do async and a more complex but capable way.

In this article, we’ll look at the different approaches for using the WinRT asynchronous APIs; that is, the ones which return IAsync* interfaces. I’ll cover the easiest approach and then look into what’s needed to check progress or cancel an asynchronous operation.

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Syncfusion Metro Studio (Metro style icon templates )

Syncfusion Metro Studio (Metro style icon templates )

Syncfusion Metro Studio is a collection of over 600 FREE Metro-style icon templates that can be easily customized to create thousands of unique Metro icons using an intuitive customization tool. Metro Studio is the only icon collection that you will ever need for building Metro-style applications. The icons are available royalty free and can be used in commercial applications.

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WinRT vs. Silverlight - Part 0

I recently wrote a blog post series on how to share your code between Silverlight and WPF.

With the announcements of Windows 8 at the //BUILD/ conference and the new Windows Runtime (WinRT) which can be built against using C# and XAML I thought it appropriate to start a new series on how to make your existing Silverlight/WPF code run on WinRT. I'm mostly writing this as notes to myself and hope you will also find them useful. Personally I've already found a lot of issues with porting code over. Not that there are significant changes, but the documentation is very limited at this point, and the gotchas enough to make you waste a lot of time on resolving this. Hopefully this will act as a resource to get it working for you as well. Keep an eye on this post. I'll post new links as I go along learning new things about WinRT.

Generally what I have found is that with respect to XAML WinRT is more compatible to Silverlight than WPF, so expect it easier to use your Silverlight knowledge, and don't try and use WPF XAML features at this point. Things like DataTriggers etc. are not supported, and for the most part, the UI related methods in code are more similar to Silverlight than .NET 4 (note however that non-UI code is closer to the "original" .NET, since this is essentially the same CLR and compiler used).

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Porting Silverlight or WPF XAML/code to a Metro style app

If you're familiar with other XAML-based platforms such as Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), Microsoft Silverlight or Silverlight for Windows Phone, then you can re-use these skills to create Metro style apps for Windows 8 Release Preview. This topic lists high-level differences you should be aware of between programming on these different platforms.

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How to Get a Developer License for Windows 8 App Development

How to Get a Developer License for Windows 8 App Development


If you have installed Windows 8 Release Preview and Visual Studio 2012 RC, you might want to develop your first Windows 8 Metro Style Application. Unlike other version of Visual Studio, you need a Developer License to build your Win8 Metro apps. Without a developer license you won’t be able to deploy the app in your Windows 8 machine or Windows 8 simulator.

This blog post will help you to understand it better and will guide you to get a Free Developer License for Windows 8 Metro application development. Continue reading to get your developer license.
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Developing Apps for Microsoft Surface, Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows Phone

Microsoft just raised the bar in the tablet market. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 24 hours, you know that Microsoft finally revealed their own tablet device, dubbed “Microsoft Surface”, built independently from its traditional OEMs. This new Microsoft Surface comes in two flavors, running either Windows 8 Pro or Windows RT. You can find all the known details on the new Microsoft Surface site here.

The Microsoft Surface devices are very new and there are still some hardware features we do not know about yet, but the operating systems powering Microsoft Surface are not new. The details about Windows 8 and Windows RT have been known for months, dating as far back as the Microsoft //Build conference last year in September 2011.


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