Tag Archives: Windows Phone

Old school ft. New school: Snake with a Lumia 920 controlling a 5110 LCD using a Netduino

Yesterday I was made a Nokia Developer Champion, and I have been working on this post on and off for a few days so the timing is perfect as a homage to Nokia.

This project definitely gave me a good helping of nostalgia, and I had more fun than any other project I’ve done.

Making a Windows Phone weather app in an hour

TechEd Africa 2013 ended a few days ago in Durban, South Africa.

I did a couple of talks – one of which was an hour-long session where I guided the attendees through the process of creating a good-looking weather app for Windows Phone. There are no shortage of weather apps in the marketplace, but it was a nice example to bring in a lot of different real-world situations like consuming JSON, using MVVM, and lots of binding stuff.

The point was to show how easy it is to create an app quickly. It only took 20 lines of code and 60 lines of XAML (half of which are closing tags so don’t count). The app would take around 15 minutes to make if I weren’t explaining.

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Jumpstart to Windows Phone and Unity 3D

EDIT: This is now also syndicated on the Nokia Developer Wiki here.

I’m currently sitting on a 12 hour flight from Amsterdam to Johannesburg, South Africa. So writing this is a far more compelling option than watching bad quality movies on a grainy 7” screen.

The beta of Unity 3D came out yesterday (a couple days ago by the time I will be able to post this) for Windows Phone 8, and it’s awesome. My biggest problem with it at this stage is that because of how easy it is, it feels very close to cheating – but hey, time is money and why should you be wasting time fighting with technical problems when you could be using it to make your idea a reality?

For those living under a medium-sized boulder, Unity 3D is middleware to create cross-platform games quickly and easily – and it excels at that. It is made up of the main IDE (which has free and paid versions) and then an exporter for each platform (desktop is free, but all the mobile platforms require a normal or pro purchase).

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Netduino + WP8: Real life Maze game

When I was young my parents bought me a wooden maze game. I loved that thing. I don’t think I ever cared much for the actual maze element – but the mechanism to tilt the stage was intriguing, and very simple.

When I remembered it the other day I managed to both find it online, and actually find my original one in an old cupboard from storage.

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More Netduino + WP8 + Bluetooth fun- 3D reconstruction

Following my previous post on Bluetooth with the Netduino, I thought I would extend it a bit.

The goal for this project is the following: Have a Netduino sending it’s orientation data (XYZ) over Bluetooth to WP8 which displays a 3D representation of it (at the right angle of course), and for bonus points attach a potentiometer to control the zoom.

Netduino + Sonar + WP8 + Bluetooth – Controlling sound with your mind

OK, maybe not with your mind, but at the very least, your hand.

The objective here was to add a sonar (ultrasonic) sensor to the Netduino, work out how close my hand was, and then send that info over Bluetooth to Windows Phone 8 and display it. Bonus points for doing something useful with the data (yes, controlling the volume of the Imperial March is totally useful!).

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Windows Phone panorama RAM usage (i.e. crazy high)

I’m nearing the end of a Windows Phone 7.1 app that I’m writing. It’s a TV-related app and as such has a lot of images – so keeping RAM usage down is really important.

Visual Studio has a pretty awesome performance profiler for WP apps, and I suggest you use it frequently. So while checking my app’s memory usage I noticed something very worrying. Around startup the usage was ramping up to over 250MB- that’s massive for a phone app, and is waaaay over the 90MB limit to pass certification.

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