New features in Windows Azure, including web site backup, .NET mobile services

Microsoft has announced new features in Windows Azure, its cloud platform, described by VP Scott Guthrie on his blog.

Aside: I agree with this comment to his post:

Thank you Scott for update. I wish dozens of MS folks and MS representatives would have a clue about Azure roadmap to help businesses plan their release

…continue reading New features in Windows Azure, including web site backup, .NET mobile services

Frank comments from Microsoft Product Manager on the Visual Studio 2012 user interface mess. “Secrecy is bad – it lets problems fester”

When Visual Studio 2012 was first previewed, it presented a new IDE style which featured all-caps menus and a mainly monochrome icon set which most developers disliked; the icons were too hard to distinguish. Microsoft has tweaked the design, restored more colour, and I hear fewer complaints today, but that essential design approach remains in

…continue reading Frank comments from Microsoft Product Manager on the Visual Studio 2012 user interface mess. “Secrecy is bad – it lets problems fester”

What next for Windows as Microsoft announces Build 2014?

Microsoft has announced Build 2014, its premier developer conference for Windows, April 2-4 in San Francisco.

In his blog post on the subject, developer evangelist Steve Guggenheimer mentions the Windows 8 app platform and Xbox One, and promises that Microsoft will talk about “what’s next for Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Azure, Windows Server, Visual

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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

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

Anders Hejlsberg says C# 6.0 to use Roslyn compiler, coming in next Visual Studio after VS 2013

A disappointment at Microsoft’s Build conference last month was lack of news about the next version of C#, version 6.0. C# architect Anders Hejlsberg did present a session, but it was on TypeScript, a language which compiles to JavaScript.

Aside: Hejlsberg talks about the new Xbox music app in Windows 8.1 (and Xbox One) which

…continue reading Anders Hejlsberg says C# 6.0 to use Roslyn compiler, coming in next Visual Studio after VS 2013

Microsoft and mediocrity in programming

A post by Ahmet Alp Balkan on working as a developer at Microsoft has stimulated much discussion. Balkan says he joined Microsoft 8 months ago (or two years ago if you count when he started as an intern) and tells a depressing tale (couched in odd language) of poor programming practice. Specifically:

Lack of documentation

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Billion dollar revenue or not, Microsoft Azure is growing fast

Is Microsoft Azure now a billion dollar business? Maybe, maybe not. The milestone was announced by Curt Anderson, CFO for Server and Tools at Microsoft, in this Bloomberg piece:

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT)’s Windows Azure software and related programs have surpassed $1 billion in annual sales for the first time … Microsoft’s $1 billion sales figure

…continue reading Billion dollar revenue or not, Microsoft Azure is growing fast

No more Delphi for .NET: Prism removed from RAD Studio XE4

Embarcadero is removing Prism from the next version of RAD Studio, XE4, expected later this month.

Prism is actually a third-party product, based on RemObjects Oxygene. Prism and Oxygene let you code in Delphi and compile to .NET or Mono.

Marc Hoffman from RemObjects explains the change here:

Starting with the upcoming release of

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Xamarin acquires LessPainful, announces Test Cloud for mobile apps

Xamarin, a company which provides tools for cross-platform development in C#, has announced its acquisition of LessPainful and the creation of cloud-based testing for mobile apps based on LessPainful’s technology and the Calabash scripting language it created.

The Test Cloud will perform automated user-interface tests on real devices, hosted by Xamarin, will provide detailed reports

…continue reading Xamarin acquires LessPainful, announces Test Cloud for mobile apps

Internal Windows Runtime apps are prohibitively expensive to deploy, says Microsoft Regional Director

Now we know why Microsoft has been so reluctant to divulge details of how to deploy a business app that uses the Windows Runtime (also known as Metro apps or Windows Store apps; though in this case the Windows Store app designation is particularly silly since these apps are precisely not Store apps).

Presuming Windows

…continue reading Internal Windows Runtime apps are prohibitively expensive to deploy, says Microsoft Regional Director