Do you miss manuals? Why and why not …

It’s that time of year. I keep more than I should, but now and again you have to clear things out. I don’t promise to dispose of all of these though: they remind me of another era, when software came in huge boxes packed with books.

If you purchased Microsoft Office, for example, you

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Microsoft Project Siena: another go at the spirit of Visual Basic

Remember Visual Basic? By which I mean, not the current language that is a case-insensitive alternative to C# that does much the same thing, but the original rapid app development tool that democratised Windows development back in 1991. At the time, Windows development was a sought-after skill but rather difficult. VB meant anyone could create

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Microsoft cloud account problems

I am working extensively with Visual Studio 2013, Office 365 and Windows Azure, researching cloud development on Microsoft’s platform. It is in general a reasonable experience, but the way Microsoft manages its cloud accounts is a constant annoyance and sometimes a source of bugs.

The problem is that you cannot manage with just one Microsoft

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Making sense of Salesforce 1 (it’s all about mobile)

At its Dreamforce conference in San Francisco, Salesforce has been hyping up its newly announced Salesforce 1. The keynote left us in do doubt: it is fantastic, it does mobile, it does cloud, it does “internet of things”.

Co-founder Parker Harris describes Salesforce 1 at Dreamforce

But what is Salesforce 1? For those

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What does Xamarin’s success say about open source versus proprietary? Miguel de Icaza says he has never been happier

Yesterday Xamarin, which offers tools for targeting iOS, Android and Mac with C#, announced a partnership with Microsoft, an announcement which I wrote up on The Register. It drew a few comments, several complaining about the cost:

So it cost more then Visual Studio Pro.

And that is for 1 target platform?

or

Not

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Visual Studio 2013 is released. What’s new?

Microsoft released Visual Studio 2013 yesterday:

VS 2013 can be installed side by side with previous versions of Visual Studio or, if you have a VS 2013 pre-release, it can be installed straight over  top of the pre-release.

I installed over the top of the pre-release and I’m happy to say that this

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ComponentOne’s TouchToolkit for Windows Forms: another approach to the Windows tablet problem

Software component vendor ComponentOne has released Studio Enterprise 2013 v2.5, the latest in its suite of components, with support for Windows 8.1 and Visual Studio 2013.

The piece that caught my eye is the TouchToolkit for Windows Forms.

Here’s the problem. The Windows desktop is poor with touch control, which is why Microsoft

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Embarcadero RAD Studio XE5 (Delphi) for Android now available

Today Embarcadero released RAD Studio XE5 which lets you build apps for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android. You can also buy Delphi XE5 separately if you prefer.

Embarcadero’s release cycle is relatively rapid. It was only six months ago that RAD Studio XE4 with iOS support appeared.

The big deal in this release is Android

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Microsoft’s MSDN changes: too much marketing

Microsoft has updated its developer site, MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network). Simple, relevant and community driven, says Product Manager Brian Harry in a post introducing the new site.

Developers are not convinced that it is an improvement. The comments to Harry’s post are pretty damning, in fact. The core complaint is that the new MSDN

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Appcelerator plans to rethink Titanium architecture, standardise on WebKit JavaScript engine

Appcelerator CEO Jeff Haynie has posted about his plans for Titanium, the company’s cross-platform mobile development toolkit.

The plan is to completely rewrite the core engine, while maintaining a mostly-compatible API. Central to the plans is the idea of using one JavaScript engine on all platforms:

With Ti.Next, we’ve created a small microkernel design that

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