Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Windows Phone 8 SDK

Windows Phone Dev Center



"The Windows Phone SDK 8.0 is now available"

Applications developed for WP7.5 (SDK 7.1) can run on WP8, but apps for WP8 can only run on WP8.

Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 are similar, but different, so the apps will need to be developed and released separately.

This is different from iOS and Android, where phone apps can run tablets.

Internet of Things (IoT) - IEEE IoT Workshop

IEEE-SA - IEEE IoT Workshop 13 November 2012 in Milan, Italy
"It is predicted that 50 to 100 billion things will be electronically connected by 2020. This Internet of Things (IoT) will fuel technology innovation by creating the means for machines to communicate many different types of information with one another. With all objects in the world connected, lives will be transformed. But the success of IoT depends strongly on standardization, which provides interoperability, compatibility, reliability, and effective operations on a global scale."


China: Why Internet of Things awareness should be on your corporate due diligence agenda
Eight out of the nine top Chinese leaders have engineering degrees, can the UK say that?

The technology embracing Chinese government is now three years into building its Internet of Things programme which last year it reckoned to grow annually at 30% to become a £48bn market within China by 2013.

the internet of things.eu

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Google Superstorm Sandy Map

Google Offers Hurricane Data Map | MIT Technology Review:

Available at Google.org/crisismap/2012-sandy, the map allows
users to see data from Google Maps, the National Hurricane Center, National
Weather Service, American Red Cross, Weather.com, and others.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Windows Phone 8 released

Windows Phone 8 review -- Engadget



Microsoft dishes more Windows Phone 8 goods
At Microsoft's official Windows Phone 8 launch, Redmond reveals even more features in its rebooted mobile OS.

Apple executive shakeup

Apple executive shakeup: Scott Forstall and John Browett are leaving the company -- Engadget:

A consequence of subpar Maps app on iPhone, and likely personality clashes..

Editorial: Apple vs. everyone

SuperStorm Sandy

Hurricane Sandy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Clouds like this are not fun at all...

This used to be a boardwalk in Atlantic City, NJ, where the Hurricane hit the shore

Flooding from Hurricane Sandy in Ocean City, New Jersey - @kenshane

NASA satellite captures stunning image of Hurricane Sandy ahead of US landfall

Many photos @ Weather.com

Nuclear plant shuts down unit as storm hits coast

Google Nexus 4: from $299, 1.5 GHz qc, 8Mpx, 2MB RAM, 8 GB, 4.7"

Google Nexus 4 hands-on (video) -- Engadget




"Nexus 4 is built around Qualcomm's snappy 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdradon S4 Pro SoC with Adreno 320 graphics and 2GB of RAM. Storage comes in 8GB and 16GB flavors with no microSD expansion. It features the same lovely 4.7-inch 1280x768-pixel IPS panel but sheds LTE support in for an unlocked pentaband DC-HSPA+ (42Mbps) radio and wireless charging. On the camera front the Nexus G inherits LG's eight-megapixel BSI sensor and f/2.4 autofocus lens.

You'll be able to purchase a Nexus 4 unlocked in the Play Store starting November 13th for $299 (8GB version) or $349 (16GB model). Take a look at our gallery below and stay tuned for our hands-on video and first impressions."



Google Nexus 10: $399, 2,560 x 1,600, 300 ppi display

Google's Nexus 10: 2,560 x 1,600, 300 ppi display and Android 4.2, shipping November 13th $399 -- Engadget


"Google has announced the Nexus 10, a Samsung-made 10.05-inch tablet that appears to share a lot of DNA with the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1. Android chief Andy Rubin revealed that the device will be packing a 2,560 x 1,600 display, promising a pixel density of 300 ppi. Google has also indicated that the Nexus 10 will crank out nine hours of continuous video playback and 500 hours of standby on its 9,000mAh lithium polymer battery."


JSIL - .NET to JavaScript compiler

JSIL - .NET to JavaScript compiler:

JSIL is a compiler that transforms .NET applications and libraries from their native executable format - CIL bytecode - into standards-compliant, cross-browser JavaScript. You can take this JavaScript and run it in a web browser or any other modern JavaScript runtime. Unlike other cross-compiler tools targeting JavaScript, JSIL produces readable, easy-to-debug JavaScript that resembles the code a developer might write by hand, while still maintaining the behavior and structure of the original .NET code.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Person: Paul Lutus

Very interesting person and podcast interview

Hanselminutes Technology Podcast - An Interview with Paul Lutus:
"Paul Lutus designed electronics for the NASA Space Shuttle, retired at 35 then moved to the country. There he purchased an Apple ][ and proceeded to write the best selling Apple Writer. Paul also sailed around the world over 3 years and wrote about the experience."

Paul Lutus web site arachnoid.com has many interesting (free) utilities, and articles.

.NET Portable Class Library

.NET platform is significantly fragmented now:
.NET that runs on Windows 8 is not same as one on Windows 7 and XP,
and Windows Phone 7.x and Windows Phone 8 are just similar, not the same.
Xbox is another dialect with similar, but not same features.

A suggested solution for reusing code between .NET platforms is
"Portable Class Library" (DLL) type of projects.
It includes a subset of features of .NET,
and until recently it didn't include new "async" feature from .NET 4.5.

Visual Studio 2012 is required, and it does not support XP.
On the other side, Windows Phone 7.x is not supported on Visual Studio 2012.
Sounds complicated? It is...

Microsoft is determined to get people to upgrade from XP...
(The other option is to just install Chrome browser on XP :)

Cross-Platform Development with the .NET Framework.

Async/Await Now Available for Windows Phone, Silverlight 4

Big Data: Freebase

Google has recently acquired Metaweb, and data/knowledge collected is available as free data damp or as online services.

That data dump could also be interesting for testing performance of various databases, in particular NoSQL...
The data are in form of Semantic Web triples.

Freebase - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia



Free Base Data Dumps
5 - 35 GB



Friday, October 26, 2012

Jeff Hawkins: Computing Like the Brain

Computing Like the Brain: @ InfoQ

"Jeff Hawkins is a co-founder of Numenta

Previous to Numenta he founded the Redwood Neuroscience Institute and two mobile computing companies,
Palm and Handspring, where he was the architect of computing products such as the PalmPilot and Treo smartphone.
In 2004 he wrote the book “On Intelligence” which describes progress in understanding the neocortex.



Can a New Theory of the Neocortex Lead to Truly Intelligent Machines? @ MIT

Numenta.com

"Grok" technology

Building a real-time prediction engine that learns and adapts automatically requires breakthroughs in machine learning. Unlike conventional AI approaches such as neural networks, Grok is modeled on a deep understanding of the biological priniciples of human intelligence.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Lars Bak: speed matters: Hotspot, JavaScript V8, Dart and beyond

Excellent presentation:

Pushing The Limits of Web Browsers … or Why Speed Matters: @InfoQ

"Lars Bak presents several language virtual machines (Self, Strongtalk, Hotspot), why they matter and how they influenced V8 and Dart. His talk is centered on performance."

Since 2006 when Google started working on V8 JavaScript Engine,
speed of JavaScript has improved 100 times!

Before V8, he also worked on Java HotSpot VM, the one that made Java viable language,
and that is still in wide use today

After V8, he is working on new web language Dart,
with intent to make it 10x faster than current JavaScript.



Anders Hejlsberg and Lars Bak: TypeScript, JavaScript, and Dart

Lars Bak and Steve Lucco: Chakra, V8, JavaScript, Open Source

Expert to Expert - Erik Meijer and Lars Bak: Inside V8 - A Javascript Virtual Machine

Windows 8 released

Microsoft Talks Up Windows 8 | Gadget Lab | Wired.com




Windows 8 OS and Windows RT tablets, including Microsoft Surface RT, are finally released!

@WSJ

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

iPad Mini

Liveblog: An iPad Mini? Apple's About to Tell Us | Gadget Lab | Wired.com


Apple Stock Price

Buy Google or Apple? The answer is simple - The Term Sheet: Fortune's deals blog Term Sheet



List of Email Servers: SMTP, POP3, IMAP

Finding how to configure Gmail client programs is easy... by googling it...
For other online email services it is much harder to find options required...

A List of SMTP and POP3 Servers:

A List of IMAP servers

Default Ports:

  • SMTP AUTH: Port 25 or 587 (some ISPs are blocking port 25)
  • SMTP StartTLS Port 587
  • SMTP SSL Port 465
  • POP Port 110
  • POP SSL Port 995
  • IMAP Port 143
  • IMAP SSL Port 993
  • IMAP StartTLS Port 143


.NET Rocks! Road Trip

.NET Road Trip: @ azure app with bing map

.NET Rocks Road Trip


Sunday, October 21, 2012

PrintFriendly & PDF

About PrintFriendly & PDF


"PrintFriendly cleans and formats web pages for perfect print experience. PrintFriendly removes Ads, Navigation and web page junk, so you save paper and ink when you print."

One of features is creating PDF file from web pages...

Windows 8: World’s Largest Hackathon on Nov 9

Join World’s Largest Hackathon: Free Hackathon Event on Nov 9 - Dr. Doris Chen's Blog - Site Home - MSDN Blogs


Build your one-of-a-kind Windows app at the free Gen Appathon event on November 9th. "

Register

Microsoft 2012 Events, December 6, registration

HTML5 Web Fonts

HTML5 comes with "semantic fonts", that make possible to get high-quality,
scale-able symbols in small reusable packages...

15 best free fonts

Symbolset



Single page apps in depth (free online book)

Modern JavaScript applications are becoming seriously large,
and require some structure to be maintainable...

Interesting new book, recommended by Scott Hanselman,
with a lot of text and little illustrations...

Single page apps in depth (new free book):


impress.js | presentation tool based on CSS3

You name it... "There is a JavaScript for it"...

This one is impressive!

impress.js | presentation tool based on the power of CSS3 transforms and transitions in modern browsers | by Bartek Szopka @bartaz:

Use keyboard arrows, view source, learn!

Creating Stunning Visualizations with Impress.js

Tutorial

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Google Nexus 7: profitable at $199

Google/Asus are not loosing money on $199 7" tablet, neither is Amazon on Kindle Fire...

Low-End Google Nexus 7 Carries $152 BOM, Teardown Reveals - IHS iSuppli’s® Teardown portal provides deeper insights into bill of materials, BOM cost, photo analysis and graphical representation of electronics. To learn more, call us at 1-310-524-4007. at iSuppli




The real marketing genius is $16 model, that cost just a tiny bit more to make, and is in higher demand for %25 higher price.

Samsung Chromebook: ARM vs Intel

New Samsung Chromebook and Samsung Series 5 550 head-to-head | ZDNet

New Samsung Chromebook is based on ARM CPU, and it costs $250.

Previous model was based on Intel Atom/Celeron, for price of $450 (there is also a model for $350).

More efficient ARM made possible to have smaller battery and less memory,
resulting in more usable and more affordable device.

Let's hope Microsoft will take this lesson and start pushing "netbook style"
Windows RT devices also... Chromebook-like Windows RT for about $300 would be great.

That would be much better answer to iPad than Surface is, since price IS important,
and while "touch" is nice, keyboard is even more.

Is there a profit for Samsung in this price?
Here is review by iSuppli Previous model was about $500 when released, and cost of components was about $330. Not as profitable as phones or tablets, but still better than laptops.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Google Samsung Chromebook, $249

New Samsung Google Chromebook Unveiled, Priced at $249


@ Wired

Weighs in at 2.5 pounds, features a Samsung Exynos 5 dual-core processor
(otherwise known as the ARM Cortex-A15 processor) and a full-sized Chrome keyboard.

The Chromebook's 11.6-inch display boasts a resolution of 1366 x 768,
which is accompanied by 16GB of internal storage and 2GB of RAM.
Battery life claims to be over six hours.


Some people complain: why not Android, that comes with plenty of apps.
But most of those apps are designed for touchscreen, so they may not work.

Also, for just a little bit more money can buy a full-featured laptop with Windows.
Again, this is not the same, since Laptop is usually much heavier,
and it requires more maintenance... in particular for security...

It would be interesting to see if Windows RT machines could come close to this price point.
In fact, that may even be possible, but Samsung is not very likely to try that,
since they can sell much more expensive devices with similar specs...

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Microsoft Surface video

New Surface video released shows off cool features - SlashGear:

Oracle NoSQL Database

Oracle NoSQL @ strata.oreilly.com

Oracle NoSQL Database Technical Overview


"The Oracle NoSQL Database is a distributed key-value database. It is designed to provide highly reliable, scalable and available data storage across a configurable set of systems that function as storage nodes.

Data is stored as key-value pairs, which are written to particular storage node(s), based on the hashed value of the primary key. Storage nodes are replicated to ensure high availability, rapid failover in the event of  a node failure and optimal load balancing of queries. Customer applications are written using an easy-to-use Java API to read and write data. The NoSQL Database links with the customer application, providing access to the data via the appropriate storage node for the requested key-value."


It will be interesting to see how Microsoft will call "NoSQL" features if they are added to SQL Server... "SQL NoSQL Server" :)

Mobile UX: Embrace Mobile

Mobile UX:

slide 110:

Tony Hird
may not be the same one quoted, but great "responsive web design"

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

iPad Mini vs. Microsoft Surface Tablet

iPad Mini Release Date Confirmed Oct. 23 - Can Microsoft Surface Tablet, 32GB Google Nexus 7, Amazon Kindle Fire HD Compete? : Books : Books & Review:

Coming up real fun time for tablets...

October 23: Apple event, most likely to announce iPad Mini, 7.85"

October 25: Microsoft event, to release Surface tablet, 10"

pricing, @eweek Microsoft has finally announce pricing for Surface, that is similar to iPad.
32 GB surface is $499, same as 16 GB iPad, while 32 GB iPad is $599.
Surface with keyboard/cover is $599.

So, compared to HP TouchPad, Microsoft at least didn't "match" the price.
By this may not be enough to make it competitive...
Android tablets have attempted the same, with almost no success.

Apple is selling computing equivalent of Mercedes cars, meaning this is a luxury brand. Even Lexus started competing with price that was 2/3 of German cars... Only much later Japanese brands could compete on features, not only on price. Hyundai is now doing the same, 2/3 of the price for same features, at least until the brand is accepted. Microsoft is trying to sell "Cadillac", and most people expect a "Chevrolet"...

The Lean Startup: "Faster"

The Lean Startup | Methodology



A core component of Lean Startup methodology is the build-measure-learn feedback loop.

The first step is figuring out the problem that needs to be solved and then developing a
Minimum Viable Product (MVP) to begin the process of learning as quickly as possible.

Once the MVP is established, a startup can work on tuning the engine.
This will involve measurement and learning
and must include actionable metrics that can demonstrate cause and effect question.

@ Wikipedia

A minimum viable product (MVP) is the "version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort." The goal of an MVP is to test fundamental business hypotheses (or leap-of-faith assumptions) and to help entrepreneurs begin the learning process as quickly as possible.


There is a well known practice called "Lean Manufacturing", that came from Toyota...

There is a trend to utilize same ideas in Lean Software Development

as well as in lean management

Sunday, October 14, 2012

ASP.NET Open Source Code

aspnetwebstack.codeplex.com



also:

aspnet.codeplex.com

razorengine.codeplex.com

Google + Napoleon: "Flow Visualization" for Analytics

Google Announces Flow Visualization for Analytics:

"Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted. The trouble is, I don't know which half."
- John Wanamaker

Google took inspiration from Charles Joseph Minard's
1869 graph of Napoleon's campaign in Russia:

(it started with many people on the lift, lost people along the way and back,
and only tiny portion of people came back home...



New Flow Visualization shows the march of users across a site, but it can be sorted to look at specific kinds of users. Web administrators can compare users on different browsers or systems, or from different referrers or countries, to see how their experiences differ on the site.

$140 000 & 300 ultrabooks: Windows 8 Apps Innovation Contest

The Windows 8 & Ultrabook™ App Innovation Contest - CodeProject



Intel is pushing their own "ultrabooks",
as well as its own "AppUp" store for desktop apps.
And there is some real marketing money behind this push.

Notice that there is one prize for Windows 8 Store app,
others are for "classic" desktop apps that take advantage of ultrabooks...

300 round 1 winners will each be sent an Ultrabook, for free, to be used to test and fine-tune your app

Some prominent bloggers (Jesse Liberty, Scott Hanselman)
have also received Intel branded ultrabooks for testing and review...

Saturday, October 13, 2012

$74 MK802 Android 4.0 Mini PC

$74 MK802 Android 4.0 Mini PC: First impressions (video) - Liliputing


In fact cost is about $50 in China, plus shipping...

So this is similar to Raspberry Pi, with enclosure and ready to use...

How about quality?

Windows RT tablets: expensive?

Asus Vivo Tab RT up for pre-order for $600 - Liliputing

iPad is safe, for now... $600 for ARM based Windows RT tablet
vs $500 for iPad with similar, but proven hardware and established ecosystem
of apps and accessories, and not to mention reputation...

Did anybody learn anything from HP TouchPad?

Android based tablets like Kindle will be more than happy to capture mass-market...
For example, $300 for Kindle 8.9 HD...

Same Day Delivery: Walmart Vs. Amazon

Walmart Vs. Amazon: Same Day Delivery « CBS Pittsburgh:

@NYTimes

Amazon’s sales, at $48 billion in 2011, are more than a tenth of Wal-Mart’s, which were $419 billion in 2011.

If Wal-Mart expanded its same-day shipping across the country, it could essentially transform the more than 4,000 Walmarts, along with Sam’s Club and other divisions, into distribution centers. Amazon, by contrast, had fewer than 40 distribution centers in the United States at the end of last year and has plans to add about 20 worldwide this year.

@Wired



Walmart: "For a flat $10 charge, customers can go online and order as many same-day eligible items as they want with no minimum purchase"

Amazon: "$8.99 per shipment, $0.99 per item"

Friday, October 12, 2012

Windows 8 Boots Too Fast

Windows 8 Boots Too Fast for its Own Good:
"the window of opportunity for Windows 8 to detect a request for a change to the OS’s boot order is just 200 miliseconds. That’s just 200 miliseconds to slap the F8 key if you want to start your system in Safe Mode or boot from another source. 

To deal with the issue, Microsoft has developed a three-tier solution that includes a new boot options menu accessible from within the operating system after start up is complete, a fail safe that automatically brings you to the boot menu if Windows doesn’t start properly and a way to get to the fail safe boot menu even if nothing is wrong with your computer


Writing Datomic in Clojure

Writing Datomic in Clojure: @ InfoQ, from GoTo 2012 conference

Rich Hickey, the author of Clojure and designer of Datomic

Datomic is new kind of database, where all facts are "atomic", 
and all data are write-only... Very clever... 

Google's Chrome: The Danish Magic Inside - Businessweek

Google's Chrome: The Danish Magic Inside - Businessweek:

JavaScript is changing the (web and other) development world
because of recently significantly improved performance.

That has all started with Google V8 engine in Chrome browser,
and now also used in node.js...

V8 started intense competition with other browsers, including IE9, IE10,
and now we can even program Windows 8 in JavaScript...

This is the story behind of V8, located in Google's Danish offices...

By the way, Microsoft's Anders Hejlsberg is also of Danish origin.

Wireless Nano Router

Road Warrior Required Equipment: The TP-LINK | Jesse Liberty


($27 on Amazon)
can also configure it to be a Router, a Repeater or a Bridge.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

TypeScript, Dart, CoffeeScript

By now it is clear to most people involved in software development
that JavaScript is a core language for making client side applications.
Over time this may extent to server scripts also.

But syntax of JavaScript, as well as tool support, is not what all developers want.
CoffeeScript is an elegant and smart pre-processor, that was even integrated to Ruby on Rails

Google engineers are making their own "Dart" pre-processor language for JavaScript,
and now Microsoft is also preparing "TypeScript" for the same purpose...

Why does TypeScript have to be the answer to anything? - Scott Hanselman


Anders Hejlsberg and Lars Bak: TypeScript, JavaScript, and Dart
chief architects of C# & TypeScript (Microsoft) and Dart & V8 (Google)

Innovation: What Every Developer Absolutely Needs to Know

Innovation: What Every Developer Absolutely Needs to Know: @ InfoQ

A nice overview of ideas from Innovators Dilemma,
applied to NoSQL database


The Innovator's Dilemma




Geoffrey Moore: "Crossing the Chasm"


Summary of "Crossing the Chasm" “What the early adopter is buying [is a] change agent. By being the first to implement this change in their industry, the early adopters expect to get a jump on the competition… They are also prepared to bear with the inevitable bugs and glitches.”

“By contrast, the early majority want to buy a productivity improvement for existing operations. … They want technology to enhance, not overthrow, the established ways of doing business.” And “they do not want to debug somebody else’s product.”

“early adopters do not make good references for the early majority. And because of the early majority’s concern not to disrupt their organizations, good references are critical to their buying decisions.”

Technology adoption lifecycle

How to use a paper towel @ TED.com

Magic words: "Shake & Fold" (1 paper is enough)

Joe Smith: How to use a paper towel | Video on TED.com



Monday, October 08, 2012

Oracle Larry Ellison "Invented" Cloud Computing

Larry Ellison Invented Cloud Computing - Business Insider



In typical Oracle way, until it got a good product ready for market,
Oracle was denouncing "cloud computing", even though
Oracle founder and CEO did privately invest in SalesForce and NetSuite,
that practically created the market for enterprise cloud apps...

By the way, same thing is happening with NoSQL databases...
Oracle started to include some such features in its products,
and stopped bashing NoSQL name...