Windows 8


I’ve just got to give a shout-out to this. Since Windows Vista, I’ve really liked the ability to have some extremely handy desktop gadgets. Microsoft tried killing these off with Windows 7, and now with Windows 8.1.

Here’s a screen shot of what’s on my desktop on most of my Windows boxes.


install this first:

Windows 8

The ‘Company Store’ – for Windows 8 Apps

Last year, I attended a nice free one-day seminar on developing applications for Windows 8.

Bottom lime: Microsoft really, really wants developers to develop Win8 Apps.

One concern I had was that corporations or other enterprises had an extremely difficult time writing these apps – and then NOT publishing them on the public-facing Windows App store.

This seems to be a great workaround. I do not know why Microsoft failed to cater to their existing corporate customer base at the launch of Windows 8.

Windows 8

I caved on the Windows 8 Start thingy…

I promise to be a good boy scout and ‘go with the flow’ when I get my new Surface tablet computer.

in the mean time – I’ve installed this little helper to get back to my same level of productivity I had with Windows 7.

One change I made was to re-enable the ‘Windows key’ – so the Windows 8 tiles appear:


Windows 8

Windows Developer Camp 2012/08/23

main speaker: Jeff Brand


we were strongly advised to sign up for this:


How to develop a Windows 8 app in 30 days. SPONSOR: “jeff brand”


Begin your 30-day journey to create a Windows Store style app. Sign up to get started and receive:


Insider tips and tricks on Windows 8 application development.


Personal on-the-phone access to a Windows 8 architect*.


An exclusive one-on-one Windows Store design consultation*.


An opportunity to get expert help from a Microsoft Services Engineer at an App Excellence Lab.


Sign up today and get started. Your new Windows 8 app could be mere days away.


also: good to create a userID here (this is for an Azure cloud hosting account):


session: “Platform for Windows 8 Store Apps”

my take: Microsoft REALLY – REALLY wants developers to develop apps for their app store.


today’s session all about WinRT API’s:

     communications + data

     graphics & media

     devices & printing


language “projections”: a wrapper for Win32 API – looks like .NET or javascript API’s


session: html development / javascript / css

WinRT is kind of what was somewhat promised a long time ago – where the OS would be managed code.

asynchronous programming is the rule. dwight says, “about time they made is usable by mere humans.”

async and await keywords in c#

app lifecycle is neat; app can detect of shutdown OK; suspended; crashed; whatever.

WinJS seems kind of neat. Like jQuery and/or KnockoutJS frameworks. Can create WinRT apps with this.

‘Blend’ is integrated into vs2012. nice way to create xaml stuff.


session: windows store

“can make more money on ads than your app…”

trial, ads – easy to add to your app choices.


session: metro apps

don’t get overwhelemed by GUI / UI choices.

went through a nice example of how to create an app – including simple requirements and use cases.

the big 3: “Search; Share; Settings” – that all [metro] apps should implement


session: Mike Benkovich – Azure deployment / Visual Studio 2012 integration


mike has been working on Azure – the microsoft cloud stuff  // mike walked through building this app.

scaling is neat – truck hook up to connectors – instant data center; no building required


session: tiles, logos, icons (jeff brand again)



I have found that two .EXEs run these Win8 apps – they ‘own’ them: WWAHost.EXE; WSHost.EXE. They do NOT show as separate processes in taskmgr. Apparently, these two .EXEs are the WinRT host that runs as a Win32 process on Windows 8.


session: multitasking


only 1 WinRT app is running – the foreground app. others are suspended. that’s to save batteries.


RTC apps: ‘real time communication’: user will have to place your app on their ‘lock screen’


Lock Screen apps run in bkg; realtime stuff; run code periodically; run in response to system events. “use the cloud” for event.


session: media, Windows.Media API’s


“GDIPlus long dead and forgotten.”  It’s all DirectX now, kids.


sensors: shake, rotate, gyro; light sensors; GPS


link: : download all samples


only way to install WinRT app outside of store: need visual studio installed…create app package…place on local folder…copy to another machine that has visual studio installed. “side loaded”. run a powershell script as-administrator. OR…if you have Enterprise edition of windows8…AND have group policy enabled…