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 Wednesday, February 26, 2014

New Skitch I thought I’d post a list of the top Windows 8 WinRT (windows store) apps that I use all the time.

I know a lot of people who are running Win8 and treating it like Win7 – never leaving the legacy Desktop if at all possible. I think those people are doing themselves a disservice, and in the long run if they are developers then they are doing their users a disservice. I say this because I view the Desktop today in the same light I viewed green screen terminals in the early 1990s – a necessary evil that will ultimately fade into the mists of time (except for those poor users who will forever be stuck using legacy apps).

So these are the apps that, if they didn’t run on Win8, would probably drive me to get an iPad or Android tablet (except that because they are on Win8 I can use them on my tablet AND on my desktop, which is extremely nice). For the most part these are pinned on my start screen on my tablet and desktop. I’ve bolded the WinRT apps and left the legacy Desktop apps unbolded so it is clear just how much I use WinRT.

Productivity:

  • Mail, Calendar, People – the standard apps/hubs that come with Win8 – they started out bad, but have become quite good
  • Outlook (desktop) – I only use this to schedule Lync meetings anymore, but can’t live without it until there’s an alternative way to schedule a Lync meeting
  • Yahoo Mail – I use yahoo as my spam dump, but occasionally scan through to see if anything real creeps into that mail box
  • OneNote – they’ve really made this app nice for keyboard/mouse and touch and pen users – indispensible!
  • Skitch Touch – nice, easy to use graphic editor – I use it to crop/annotate quick screen grabs for the most part
  • Healthvault – keep track of my blood pressure and weight, important given my recent health issues, and it works on WP8 too
  • qool – a very simple to-do tracker, which works for me because it is low-friction, but I wish it worked on WP8 too
  • MyTrips – I travel a lot and rely on Tripit.com to keep me sane; MyTrips is on Win8 and WP8 and is better than the “official” Tripit app
  • Office (desktop) – I so wish there was a WinRT version of Office, but in the meantime I can’t live without the legacy Desktop version
  • Live Writer (desktop) – still the best way I know to author blog posts

News, weather, etc:

  • Nextgen Reader – RSS reader that also runs (and syncs) to my WP8 phone
  • Bing News, Bing Weather – nice apps, consistent on WP8 (finally), and keep me up to date with the world
  • MyRadar – consistent with WP8 and the fastest way to get weather radar on any device – I love this app!
  • Reading List – keeps a list of articles/posts/URLs that I want to review or use later
  • Flipboard – I use this only on my tablet because it is only fun with touch, but it presents a visually pleasing way to browse facebook/twitter/other web info

Finance:

  • Bing Finance – keep track of the market and business news
  • Mint – keep track of family finances – mostly just trying it out (and it is really nice), because I’m already a Quicken user
  • Quicken (desktop) – keep track of family and business finances, but I wish there was a WinRT version more like Mint – my problem is that Mint can’t do small business stuff, so I need Quicken

Social:

  • Lync (desktop) – I mostly use the Desktop version, though the WinRT app is slowly catching up and I do look forward to being able to use it
  • Twitter – the official twitter app, I’m sure there are better ones, but I’m not a heavy twitter user so this is fine
  • Skype – I use the WinRT app, but sometimes I also use the Desktop app – but the WinRT app is catching up fast, which makes me happy
  • Facebook – sure I can get there via the web, but I do like the app
  • Yammer – I mostly use the web because the yammer app is pretty poor, but it works as a share target; the WP8 app is better
  • Reddit by samrad – I’m not a big reddit user, but this is a nicely designed app that is fun to use
  • IE11 – for LinkedIn, because they don’t have an app yet; and for yammer because the WinRT yammer app is too limited

Media:

  • Xbox Music – I have a subscription to the service, and love the access to so much music on my tablet/PC/phone
  • Xbox Video – I’ve purchased a few movies to watch on the airplane on my Surface, and we also watch them on the TV through the Xbox
  • Netflix – we cut the cable a couple years ago and rely on Netflix/Hulu/Amazon for almost all media, so this app is indispensible
  • Hulu Plus – see my notes on Netflix – indispensible
  • IE11 – I wish, oh do I wish, that Amazon had streaming video app, but as it is I’m stuck using IE to watch Amazon video
  • MetroTube – very nice youtube app; another is MegaTube, but personally I prefer MetroTube
  • Zune (desktop) – my Xbox Music subscription provides me with 10 free songs each month, and the old Zune app is the only way to use those 10 credits to ‘purchase’ the tracks
  • Comics – the Comixology app is really nice; I know, as an adult I shouldn’t read comics, but I’m an uber-geek so I do, and this app is a really nice way to read them
  • Kindle – I mostly use a real Kindle because I don’t like reading on a glossy screen, but if I’m caught without my Kindle I’ll read on my Surface or phone
  • VEVO – I remember the days when MTV used to be about music videos, and VEVO is much like MTV from 1985 – happiness!

Utilities:

  • Clipboard – this is an app that allows you to Share from any app into the Windows clipboard, and I use it constantly – couldn’t live without it
  • File Manager HD – the best file manager app I’ve found so far – local and remote file access, quite nice
  • OneDrive/SkyDrive – slightly faster than File Manager HD for OneDrive access, but otherwise a duplicate
  • Dropbox – gives access to shared folders and other advanced features not in File Manager HD
  • Box – really a duplicate of File Manager HD
  • Remote Desktop – the WinRT Microsoft RDP client is nice, and I use it daily
  • TeamViewer – I sometimes use TeamViewer to connect to my desktop when I’m on the road; not as fast/smooth as RDP, but it gets through firewalls and NAT routers better

Photos:

  • Photos – I do use this app, but it was far better in Win8 than it is in 8.1 – they really crippled it…
  • Live Photo Gallery (desktop) – The only way to get at the thousands of photos on my server, and remains far, far more powerful than the built-in Photos app

Gaming:

  • Steam (desktop) – so I can get at all the games I’ve purchased via Steam
  • Origin (desktop) – so I can play Battlefield 4 and (soon) TitanFall
  • Wordament – my favorite casual game
  • Halo Spartan Assault – so nicely done, and fun to play

Shopping:

  • Amazon – of course! I do more shopping on Amazon than pretty much anywhere else
  • Zappos.com – I’m not a small man, and zappos always has shoes that fit, and their service is excellent
  • NewEgg – I go back and forth between their app and their web site, but the app is pretty decent

Development:

  • Visual Studio (desktop) – of course
  • Blend (desktop) – of course
  • Xamarin Tools (desktop) – build iOS and Android apps with C#, what more could you want???
  • GitHub for Windows (desktop) – nice way to interact with github and Visual Studio Online repositories
  • TortoiseGit (desktop) – I used TortoiseCvs, then TortoiseSvn, so it is natural that I’d use TortoiseGit more than any other git client
  • Windows 8 Dev Icons – provides useful icons with code snippets to access them
  • Xaml Candy – provides useful code snippets for common XAML elements
  • Samples Browser – browse Microsoft samples
  • Code Writer – a nice WinRT text/code editor for numerous file formats
  • Project Spark – so much fun to build WinRT and Xbox games
  • Project Siena – has the potential to be the “VB” of WinRT if they continue to evolve this tool – there’s no faster way to build simple WinRT business apps
  • Chrome (desktop) – for when IE11 doesn’t meet my needs
Windows 8 | WinRT | WP8
Wednesday, February 26, 2014 11:28:46 AM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
 Saturday, February 08, 2014

The Modern Apps Live! conference is coming up soon. Not only am I speaking at this event, but I’m the conference chair so I had the privilege of laying out all the content for the show.

map2014logo

This is the third Modern Apps Live! event and I think it offers something you won’t find in many (any?) other conferences. It is a single track, a single room. The content builds on itself through the entire conference. If you stick with us for the whole show we’ll walk you through the entire process of architecting, designing, and implementing a modern app.

What is a modern app? We define it as an app that has a compelling user experience that is available across all modern devices (Windows, iPad, Android, HTML 5) and that provides the user with a great touch/keyboard/mouse experience as appropriate for each device. A modern app’s data is ubiquitous, so it follows you from device to device, providing a consistent experience and access; as you can imagine, this implies a cloud-based back end system.

The great thing is that Modern Apps Live! is part of the Live 360! event, so if you want to branch out you’ll have full access to all the Visual Studio Live!, SQL Live!, and SharePoint Live! sessions as well.

There’s still time to register for Modern Apps Live! in Las Vegas, and I hope to see you there!

Saturday, February 08, 2014 4:43:16 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
 Tuesday, February 04, 2014

I got this in the email today, and I literally laughed out loud.

I’ve been fighting these spammers for years, and they’ve cost me ridiculous amounts of time and money over that time.

The fact that these inherently evil people are now asking me to spend more of my time and money to resolve some issue they brought on themselves is hilarious!

Now maybe if they’d offered me a bunch of money – enough to cover my time now to remove the links, plus enough to cover all the hours I’ve spent fighting their spam over the years – I’d be motivated to “help” them.

As it is, I find that I’m highly motivated to do two things:

  1. Use these people as public examples of evil in the hopes that few enough people will ever use their services that they go out of business
  2. Leave their spam in my web site as long as the Google ranking harms them by my actions

(what’s even funnier is that their spam is in a fake user profile, not in the actual forum, and the spammer that created that user profile has the password and could thus clean up the spam themselves – I think these national positions people should just pay their spammer to clean up the mess – that would be pretty funny too :) )

==================

Name: Webmaster

Email: webmaster@nationalpositions.com

Comments:Hello,

I am the webmaster for http://www.nationalpositions.com.

Sometime in the past we were paying a company for a link building campaign for our website. At the time, we didn't know what kinds of links they were building, and we were assured they would help our rankings. We are now in a situation where these links are causing a Google penalty on our domain.

We have identified which links we believe could be causing this, and we found your domain is hosting links we need removed.

I would greatly appreciate it if you removed all of the links to http://www.nationalpositions.com from your domain. Here is an example of the URLs hosting the links:

http://forums.lhotka.net/members/seowebmaster/announcements/default.aspx

http://forums.lhotka.net/members/seowebmaster/announcements/default.aspx?ProfileMessageID=7c814777-8d16-45cf-94ad-8dde74f57a17

Please let me know when you have removed our links from your domain.

We are very sorry if spam was placed on your domain on our behalf.

Thank you,

The nationalpositions.com Team

Tuesday, February 04, 2014 9:39:49 AM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [2]  | 
 Monday, February 03, 2014

I’ve had my Nokia Lumia 1520 “phablet” for around 6 hours now and thought I’d record my earliest thoughts.

(phablet is a term used to describe a huge phone, big enough to be a small tablet – hence “phablet”)

Good:

  1. The phone is as solid and well built as other Lumia devices
  2. Even though it is bigger than my 920 I don’t think it weighs much more; not what I expected from such a large device
  3. From what I’ve seen thus far, the battery doesn’t go down unless I run the Waze app (which drains batteries even if your phone is plugged into a charger)
  4. Reading email, browsing, and other data consumption activities are a lot of fun on the bigger screen
  5. Not only is the screen bigger, it is 1080p so it is so clear and sharp! Watching Hulu Plus and NetFlix on this thing is nice!!
  6. Moving from one WP8 device to another is a breeze; all my data and apps are in the cloud so the new phone just spent a while downloading everything and it just worked!

Neutral:

  1. The GDR3 “Black” update auto-installed on startup, and of course it has nice features all by itself, but I had that on my 920 already
  2. Though the device is quite large, I mostly talk via BlueTooth headsets or Microsoft Sync in my truck, so I haven’t yet encountered any awkward moments of holding a phablet up to my ear

Bad:

  1. Stupid AT&T prevents the Data Sense app from installing to the device; my 920 was a developer device and so it wasn’t blocked (even on ATT), and I really, really, really miss having Data Sense already (yes, they say I should use the myATT app, but I’m on a corporate plan so that app is total junk, and even if it did work it wouldn’t show the useful info shown by Data Sense)
  2. The screen is so big that even with my massive hands I can’t really use the device with one hand
  3. A small number of apps from the 920 apparently can’t run on the 1520, though that could be related to me moving from an unlocked dev phone to an AT&T branded device where they appear to cripple some things
  4. Though the battery life seems to be excellent, charging the battery takes _forever_ – or I’ve got a bad device, because it has been charging for a really long time and isn’t fully charged yet (and no, the Waze app isn’t running in the background :) )
  5. The device is big enough to be somewhat uncomfortable in the front pocket of my jeans, so I’m trying the back pocket; hopefully I don’t accidentally sit on it and break the phone…

On Waze:

Twice I mentioned the Waze app. It is a wonderful app if you need to get somewhere through traffic, snowstorms, etc. The user-driven data sourcing for traffic and related events is all in realtime, and I’ve found that Waze gets me around traffic that other GPS apps (even with traffic data) wouldn’t avoid.

BUT, the Waze app does literally drain the battery on phones even when plugged into a charger, so it is something you can _only_ use when the phone is plugged into a charger, and even then only for a relatively short period of time (such as on your commute to/from work). Even then, I suspect it would totally drain a battery with a longer commute like people have in some cities…

Monday, February 03, 2014 9:30:47 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [1]  | 
 Friday, January 17, 2014

Update:

Thanks to this post I learned something useful that addresses some of my concerns. Specifically that there is an “Xbox Music” app in the Windows Phone store that you can download for free. Rather than updating the built-in music app in the phone, they created a new one and nobody told me :)

This new Xbox Music app is pretty much comparable to the Windows 8 app, including the following:

  1. You can view music in the cloud, on the device, or both
  2. Playlists sync between WP8 and Win8

This addresses several of my complaints (around lack of playlists and playing every song twice).

It still doesn’t explain why the Xbox Music app on Win8 often mutes when it isn’t in the foreground (but sometimes works as expected). Nor does it alleviate the lack of music videos on the Xbox One compared to the 360.

But at least I can now use my phone to listen to music while at cardio rehab, and that was my single biggest desire.

Original:

I really like (or used to like) the Zune client and zune.net service, which were sort of renamed Xbox Music.

And even after the rename and changes the Xbox Music service is pretty good in some ways.

But there are some key things that are just plain broken – to the point I’m thinking about dropping the service. These are my complaints:

  1. On the Xbox 360 the Xbox Music app had something called “Smart VJ” that played music videos; this is gone on the Xbox One, thus eliminating the primary reason I used Xbox Music on the actual Xbox (there’s no VEVO app for Xbox One either, so basically no music videos available at all – good thing I still have my 360!)
  2. On Windows Phone 7 I could sync my music to the phone; on WP8 I can copy my music to the phone via the file system, but all my “cloud music” shows as duplicated on the phone, so I hear almost every song twice (or if there’s no data signal every other song errors out when the phone tries to play it) – basically the experience makes the phone virtually useless for music (some more info about the broken cloud music feature is here: http://winsupersite.com/article/windows-phone-8/windows-phone-8-tip-xbox-cloud-collection-144703)
  3. I have to create playlists for my phone on my phone, which is tedious at best, especially compared to creating a playlist on a computer; this problem didn’t exist in WP7 And thanks to the nasty cloud collection behavior, creating a playlist automatically is kind of useless for when I want to listen offline (like on an airplane, or when I’m at physical therapy in the basement of the hospital where there’s no cell service)
  4. There’s no “Smart DJ” feature on Windows 8 if you are offline – even if you have a couple thousand songs physically on your computer; the lowly Zune HD device didn’t have this problem, but my super-powerful and much more modern Surface Pro can’t pick its own music when offline?
  5. About half the time the Xbox Music app on Windows 8 mutes the sound when the app is in the background – sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t – seems pretty buggy to me

Basically, compared to the original Zune and zune.net behaviors the Xbox Music clients and service are a major step backwards.

Is anyone using some online/offline music service or player that does work on Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8? Something that:

  1. Creates smart playlists using music that’s on the device
  2. Doesn’t duplicate music that’s on the phone and is in the cloud (so doesn’t play every song twice)
  3. Doesn’t attempt to play cloud-based music while offline
  4. When online does give streaming access to a huge song library
  5. Plays music on Windows 8 without muting when the app is in the background (Pandora is broken like this, and Xbox Music is unreliable in this regard)
  6. Allows me to download otherwise-streaming music for a playlist if I want that music offline (one of the things Xbox Music does well)

I know I might be an outlier, wanting to listen to music when I have no data service (or when I don’t want to burn my cell data plan down). And maybe I should just get an iPod and be done with it – but then I’d have to install iTunes on my computer, and last time I did that I was far from satisfied either…

Windows 8 | WP8 | Xbox | Zune
Friday, January 17, 2014 10:06:33 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [5]  | 
 Tuesday, January 07, 2014

CSLA 4 version 4.5.500 is officially released and is available via nuget or from www.cslanet.com.

This version includes some major new capabilities, including:

  • Support for Windows Runtime 8.1, including substantial updates to the Csla.Xaml namespace and controls
  • Support for Android via Xamarin using the latest version of Xamarin tools
  • Support for EF6
  • Support for ASP.NET MVC 5
  • Improved support for using IoC containers in the server-side data portal
  • The installer now includes a .chm file for the Csla.dll assembly

This version also includes a number of bug fixes and minor feature enhancements.

CSLA 4 allows you to create a powerful object-oriented business layer that encapsulates all your business logic. That business logic can then be reused across multiple UI technologies and platforms, including:

  • Windows 8 (WinRT)
  • WPF
  • ASP.NET (MVC, Web Forms, and Web API)
  • WCF
  • Android (via Xamarin)
  • Windows Forms
  • Windows Phone 8
  • Silverlight 5

The ability to literally write one set of business logic code that can be reused across all these UI and platform technologies is extremely powerful, and provides you with flexibility to support multiple client platforms, or to move from one technology to another over time without having to rewrite your entire application.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 1:37:34 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
 Monday, December 09, 2013

Magenic’s free day of technical training is coming to Boston this Thursday, December 12.

http://www.codemastery.com/events/boston

This event includes some great topics, such as:

  • AngularJS
  • Power BI
  • Social network integration into your apps
  • NoSQL using RavenDB, MongoDB, and Azure

The keynote by Magenic’s national practice lead for app dev Kevin Ford is focused on the trends driving the massive changes to our industry at the moment, and isn’t to be missed!

Register now and plan to spend your Thursday learning about cool technology!

Monday, December 09, 2013 1:40:07 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [0]  | 
 Tuesday, December 03, 2013

So Google now has an infrastructure as a service (IaaS) offering to compete with Amazon and Microsoft Azure.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57614304-93/google-compute-engine-now-ready-for-prime-time/?part=rss&subj=news&tag=title

From my perspective as a developer this is a big yawn.

IaaS is an IT pro thing – a way of shifting costs from an internal data center (usually capital cost) to an external provider (usually a cash cost). Mostly it is a bunch of accounting details that ultimately result in the same sorts of servers running in a different physical location.

As a developer you don’t really change the way you code just because a server is running onsite, or in a co-location, or in a “cloud”. So who really cares?

IT managers and CFOs care. And really IaaS is fine for an IT manager because they still need pretty much the same size staff to run their servers regardless of where they exist physically. Somebody needs to do server admin, OS upgrades/patches, etc.

Now platform as a service (PaaS) like you can get with Windows Azure is FAR more interesting to a developer, but incredibly threatening to IT managers and IT pros.

Azure’s PaaS offering gives developers a higher level of abstraction. Instead of dealing with the OS we get to deal with versions of ASP.NET, and the underlying OS is automatically upgraded/patched (within limits you set).

PaaS radically reduces the number of IT staff required to manage and run the “servers” because almost all the work is handled by Azure itself. This can be a massive cost savings to a company due to staff reduction, but you can probably see why IT managers tend to look more at IaaS than PaaS – their “empire” would be in jeopardy by embracing PaaS…

But as a developer, I’d much rather embrace PaaS. IaaS gets me nothing, but PaaS helps me get new compute power provisioned in minutes instead of weeks/months. And it helps minimize the chances that some IT pro will change a low-level configuration on the server, thus breaking my app.

I understand why Google (and Amazon and Microsoft) chase the IaaS market – because there’s money to be had there.

But as a developer who dislikes IT cost accounting and cares little for the size of the IT staff necessary to admin tons of servers, I’d much, much, much rather build my software to run on Azure using the PaaS model.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013 11:38:53 AM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [2]  | 
 Sunday, December 01, 2013

This recent article is interesting:

http://www.neowin.net/news/windows-xp-remains-nearly-flat-windows-881-up-slightly-in-novembers-os-data

Of course it is talking about the “now dead” traditional computing market. You know, the market that totally dominates the business desktop/laptop world, as well as (still) most home computing.

Although tablets and phones have enjoyed massive growth over the past few years, the reality is that they have done little to actually replace traditional computing in many ways.

Of course as soon as anyone makes statements or draws conclusions about anything to do with market share numbers between OSes and/or mobile devices the conversation instantly devolves into meaningless drivel. I think the reason these conversations are almost always fruitless is that there's a lack of definition around terms and the nature of the conversation.

I want to be clear that this entire blog post is about smart client development. If you are already building all your business software as web sites then you don’t really care much right? The client device is merely a colorful terminal for your server-side computing, and for the most part it doesn’t matter what OS or brand device is being used as long as it has a modern browser to act as that terminal.

But from a smart client perspective the client device and OS matters a lot!

The primary focus in my career, and at Magenic is business app dev, and tablets have done little to replace traditional computers in the workplace thus far. They augment, but they don't replace. Hence the workplace computing space is still roughly 91% Windows.

People have tablets at home, and for a lot of home scenarios they are replacing traditional computers. And tablets are used in some limited business scenarios, mostly where employee’s jobs are made more efficient if they have computing while away from their desks. This is what we currently refer to today as "mobile" for the most part. This segment might be transitioning to tablets in a way that eats into computer sales, but even that isn't entirely clear. Anyone who brings a lot of work home almost certainly still has a home computer in addition to their tablet, and I still see a lot of “mobile workers” carrying around laptops or ultrabooks.

And then there's the pure consumer market, which is essentially entirely mobile, or will be soon. People who don't bring work home with them have little or no need for a computer other than to run iTunes. If Apple had iTunes for the iPad itself I suspect a massive number of people wouldn't need a PC or Mac – as long as they don’t bring work home with them (or if their work doesn’t require data entry or manipulation).

For my part I’ve spent my career in the business space, not the consumer space. And I don’t see myself getting rich building inventory management apps that sell for $0.99 per user. Instead I create inventory management systems for companies that pay hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars for such software. Then those companies expect that software to run for 7-10 years so they can recover their investment. This is almost entirely unlike the consumer app space.

What makes this interesting is that there's a broad assumption in the world at large that the PC as we know it is done for - that it will be replaced by "something else". This is bolstered by Microsoft's own moves that effectively deprecate the "desktop" in favor of a different approach.

That said, I am 110% certain that 20 years from now there'll still be "desktop" (Win32, .NET, etc.) apps - and people will use them from a terminal emulator (probably RDP into Citrix) via their then-current device and OS. Exactly like so many old mainframe/minicomputer apps are used today via 3270 or VT terminal emulators via Windows.

But I personally don't want to be a maintenance developer on one of those soon-to-be-ancient apps, and so to me the 60 bajillion dollar question is what (if anything) will eat into the 91% business OS market share currently dominated by Windows. It might be one of these options:

  1. Windows (presumably in the form of WinRT, assuming Microsoft fixes their flawed business app side loading cost model)
  2. "JavaScript"/TypeScript/etc. (assuming an offline deployment model for apps, including some js version of Excel that'd work offline)
  3. Android (again, assuming Android continues to expand into bigger and multiple monitors, and Office eventually gets spun off into a business so Excel works on Android)
  4. iOS (assuming iOS expands to handle multiple 30" monitors and Microsoft spins off Office so they fully support iOS with Excel)
  5. Windows Desktop (perhaps everything we're going through right now is a fad - a fluke - and "real work" will be done on Windows long into the future)

Personally I assume that what we think of as "mobile" today will disappear as it merges into the business "desktop" of the future, leaving us with the same old business vs consumer spaces.

And as a business developer I won't care any more about the consumer space in the future than I have in the past. Which is to say not at all, beyond being a user of consumer apps myself (I do enjoy email, calendar, Instagram, Facebook, etc.).

But I will care about "mobile" because it will (imo) become the future business platform. Something will end up eating into and ultimately replacing today’s 91% Windows business desktop market.

I still think WinRT has a shot at this. A good shot actually given that the networking and security infrastructure to support Windows is already dominant, so the easiest thing for most businesses would be to slowly shift to WinRT. Again, presupposing Microsoft wakes up and fixes their ridiculous business app side loading model.

I also think JavaScript (TypeScript, Angular, Knockout, etc.) has a good shot, especially if Chrome continues to mature its offline deployment story and Microsoft continues to create an artificial barrier to WinRT adoption by charging a "deployment tax" for WinRT business apps. I could totally see most business apps being built to assume Chrome on the client, because Chrome runs on every type of device/OS people are likely to have.

I am dubious that Android has a shot, but I don't discount it. Today you can buy 24" Android "desktops", so some Android vendors are certainly trying to adapt the devices, OS, and its ecosystem to the business world.

I am even more dubious about iOS, because I have yet to see Apple making any moves necessary to become a business/enterprise player at a device or OS level.

And I didn't mention OS X or Linux here because they've had nearly 20 years to become players and have yet to get more than 5% of the total market, so why would we think the future would be different? Though I must admit that Ubuntu and Mint are very usable user-focused Linux implementations, and if they’d have existed 15-20 years ago Windows would have been in trouble.

As a result I’m personally continuing to invest in C# and XAML in the hopes that Microsoft makes WinRT a viable smart client platform. And I’m investing in TypeScript, JavaScript, and various related frameworks because I think that platform is probably the next most likely to become the smart client business platform of the future.

Sunday, December 01, 2013 9:16:15 PM (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)  #    Disclaimer  |  Comments [4]  | 
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