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Windows 10 Archives - Falafel Software Blog

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Using Google Services in UWP C# Apps – Part 1

By | Cloud Platform | No Comments

This is post 16 of 17 in the series “Google Cloud for the .NET Developer” It’s no secret that I love Windows, and especially writing UWP apps for Windows using C#. In fact I’ve written a bit about creating UWP apps in the past, so as a fan of UWP, I wanted to explore how one can leverage the Google Cloud Platform and other Google services in Windows apps. Unfortunately, as of this writing, Google does not officially support UWP. However, this is not to say you cannot USE Google services in your app; it only means that the SDKs available to…

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How to Use Multiple Panes in a Bash Console

By | bash, Linux, Windows | No Comments

Windows 10 recently released a Linux subsystem that allows you to run Linux programs on Windows. There is a little bit of magic involved with how they integrated the two operating systems, as Scott Hanselman explains in this introduction/how-to video: http://www.hanselman.com/blog/VIDEOHowToRunLinuxAndBashOnWindows10AnniversaryUpdate.aspx You can do some interesting things with Linux, particularly around shell scripts. Recently, I had the need to run multiple commands simultaneously, and I also needed to separate the output of each command from one another. If I were writing a Windows app, then I might dedicate a panel of the UI for each command. Could I do the same in a…

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Solved: Windows 10 Anniversary Update Install Hang

By | Windows | One Comment

Over the weekend, Windows Update alerted me that the Windows 10 Anniversary Update was available to be installed onto my Thinkpad W530 laptop. Since I was anxious to try out the new Bash shell integration, I clicked the button to start the update. Downloading the files took about 30 minutes. Then, I had to schedule a reboot (read: I chose to restart right away). The installation began, and after a few automatic reboots, I found myself staring at a screen showing the installation at 32% complete. But, the progress spinner wasn’t spinning and there was no hard drive activity. Was the installation stuck,…

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Exploring Multi-Photon and Particle Cloud Functionality with a Useless Machine

By | .NET, Blogs, C#, Fun, Hardware, IoT, Microsoft, Mobile, Multi-Device, News, Photon, Visual Studio, Web, Windows, Windows Universal Apps | 2 Comments

There are many ways for Particle Photons to interact with each other. Even more ways for other devices and apps to interact with Photons through the Particle Cloud. To explore these capabilities, I created a useless machine. My useless machine is made up of two Photons. Photon 1 “falafel_1” has a photo resistor and a green LED. Photon 2 “falafel_2” also has a photo resistor and a green LED. However, Photon 2 also has a servo motor and a second red LED. The servo motor is mounted so that when it is rotated to 90 degrees, it covers both photo…

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Particle Photon Oscilloscope

By | .NET, Blogs, C#, Fun, Hardware, IoT, Microsoft, Mobile, Multi-Device, News, Photon, Visual Studio, Windows | 2 Comments

I previously turned my Windows IoT Core-based Raspberry Pi 2 into an oscilloscope, but I didn’t stop there. The next gadget in my target is the Particle Photon. This is an amazing little device. However ,unlike the Raspberry Pi 2, it doesn’t have an HDMI output (it’s only about the size of an HDMI connector). I wasn’t sure how best to display the signal data. I took inspiration from a post from Hackster.io – Sending sound over the Internet. They used the TCP capabilities of the Photon to stream audio data to a client. That’s all I needed to bring…

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Windows 10 Development: Custom StateTriggers

By | Windows | 4 Comments

This is post 14 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” We’ve seen how the Windows 10 AdaptiveTrigger can help you create a dynamic responsive UI based on the height or width of the device or screen. However, this trigger is limited to a specific value for each dimension, and offers no way to respond to changes in the relationship between them, such as to determine the orientation or aspect ratio of the app. Fortunately, you are not limited to only the AdaptiveTrigger in Windows 10; you can create your own custom statetriggers based on virtually any property, even…

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Windows 10 Development: Responsive Design with AdaptiveTriggers

By | Windows | One Comment

This is post 13 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” In the previous post we looked at the basics of UI automation in Windows 10 apps using Blend to declare the XAML for Visual States. However, while last time we used event handlers in the code-behind of a page to trigger different states, this time we’ll see how to use the new AdaptiveTriggers in Windows 10 to let the application handle state transitions automatically. StateTriggers Each VisualState exposes a StateTriggers property, which is a collection of triggers that it uses to determine whether or not the state should be…

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Windows 10 Development: UI Automation with Blend and VisualStateManager

By | Windows | One Comment

This is post 12 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” In our previous post we built a UniformGrid container for the ListView, resulting in an evenly-spaced, grid-like view for the main screen of Falafel2Go: This screen is actually made up of two such ListViews in a RelativePanel, allowing it to reposition the lists to support a landscape view, while still keeping the larger size for the featured Blog and Training activities. This layout switch happens automatically as the screen size changes (or, on a phone, if you rotate the screen to its side). Today we’ll see how we…

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Windows 10 Development: Creating a UniformGrid Container

By | Windows | No Comments

This is post 11 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” This post describes the need for and implementation of a UniformGrid layout control that, when used with a ListView, allows the repeated elements to appropriately stretch to a consistent size to achieve a grid-like layout. Grid Layouts: Simple but Static In our last post we looked at the new RelativePanel control, which we used in the Falafel2Go app for Windows 10 to create a dynamic, responsive layout for the home screen:   You’ll notice that in most of the orientations, the Blog and Training elements are featured and…

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Windows 10 Development: RelativePanel

By | Windows | No Comments

This is post 10 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Another new control in the Windows 10 Developer toolbox is the RelativePanel, a layout container which enables flexible positioning between the elements it contains. Today we’ll take a closer look at this control and how we used it to build the UI of the Falafel2Go app for Windows 10. RelativePanel Positioning Using the RelativePanel, each element it contains can specify its position in relation to either another element, or docking to the container itself. By leveraging these position properties, you can easily create dynamic layouts in a…

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Windows 10 Development: SplitView

By | Windows | One Comment

This is post 9 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Now that we have a simple but solid foundation for a complete Windows 10 app, let’s take a tour through some of the brand new controls available on the platform. Today we’ll look at the SplitView control, which enables you to quickly create a consistent, intuitive navigation UI that can automatically adjust to different screen sizes and device platforms. SplitView The most common function of the SplitView control is to provide a familiar, responsive navigation structure to an application. As the controls name suggests, it consists of…

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Windows 10 Development: MvvmLight NavigationService and the Behaviors SDK

By | Windows | 21 Comments

This is post 8 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Following our last post, we now have a solid framework for our app to handle state and lifecycle. However, at this point we are still navigating the app directly from the code-behind of the Views, which ties the navigation to the platform code. In addition to cluttering up our code, this also restricts us from fully taking advantage of the cross-platform opportunities offered by MvvmLight. Today we’ll see how to centralize this navigation code, removing the platform-specific definition and moving from the code-behind to the ViewModels, allowing maximum reuse of code. We’ll…

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Windows 10 Development: Maintaining Application State

By | Windows | 3 Comments

This is post 7 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” We have so far created a simple app with two pages, that uses simple Frame navigation to go back and forth. However, the app is still missing one crucial feature: state management. When an app is suspended for whatever reason (such as being minimized on the desktop or navigated away from on the phone), it is up to the developer to maintain the current state so that it can be fully restored where the user left off. In this post we’ll look at a simple way we…

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Windows 10 Development: Adding Simple Navigation

By | Windows | 5 Comments

This is post 6 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” So far we’ve setup a few pages with some design-time data to help us layout the app, but running it still yields a blank screen with no interaction possible. We’ll remedy this by loading the sample data at runtime and adding a simple navigation implementation to allow us to go back and forth between the pages. To keep things simple, we’ll briefly break from the MVVM pattern, and navigate directly of the page frame via the code behind, and in future posts see how we can roll…

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Windows 10 Development: Adding Design-Time Data with Blend

By | Windows | 2 Comments

This is post 5 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” In our last post, we installed the MVVM Light Toolkit and defined the basic framework for a simple two-page app with the MVVM pattern. With the ViewModels we created, we now have the containers for the data, but it would be even more helpful to pre-populate them with some sample data to aid in the designing of the app. Design-Time Data Support Fortunately MVVM Light exposes a static property allowing the ViewModel code to detect whether or not it is running inside a visual designer such as Visual Studio…

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Windows 10 Development: Getting Started with the MVVM Light Toolkit

By | Windows | 5 Comments

This is post 4 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” In the next few posts we’ll dive into the basics of using the MVVM Light Toolkit with Windows 10 to build a simple project two-page with the MVVM design pattern. Today we’ll show how to setup the toolkit in a Windows 10 project, and some of the basic components you’ll need to define to follow the MVVM pattern. MVVM A complete discussion of the MVVM pattern is outside the scope of this document, so if you are new to the concept and want to learn more I suggest taking…

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Introducing Falafel2Go for Windows 10

By | Windows | 3 Comments

This is post 3 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Now that Windows 10 is live, it made sense for Falafel to dive right in, updating our showcase demo app Falafel2Go to take advantage of the new features of the platform. Our previous update was built using Xamarin, and with just a few changes, we were able to update it to run on Windows 10. We’ll be using this app as a guide and demo to explore some of the cross-platform strategies in later posts, but you can download it today and try it out! Responsive UI…

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Windows 10 Development: Upgrading from Preview SDK to Release

By | Windows | 5 Comments

This is post 2 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Before diving into the main parts of our series, there may be some of you (like me!) that were already building apps with the preview SDK for Windows 10. If you attempt to open a preview solution with the final version of the SDK installed, you will very likely have issues (as I did!). In this quick bonus post, I’ll cover just a few of the issues I had to fix to get my project updated and running with the latest releases of both Windows 10 and…

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Hello, Windows 10: Getting Started Developing

By | Windows | 8 Comments

This is post 1 of 14 in the series “Developing for Windows 10” Today is a big day in the history of Microsoft; the long-awaited Windows 10 release is finally here, bringing a whole new level of interactivity, security, productivity and entertainment. And with it comes a whole a whole new App Development model designed to unify and enhance the developer (and ultimately the user) experience. As an avid fan of everything Microsoft, I’m excited to start this new journey, and in addition to sharing my enthusiasm for the platform, I thought I would go a step further and share…

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