Flying with Xamarin and Telerik UI

Ask any developer about what code they are really proud to have written – the stories would be amazing. Maybe it is life-saving software in a healthcare system, or mission critical app in a global business or simply an open source library used freely by thousands of other developers. We software developers should take pride in our craftsmanship.

As for me, it was a WPF application – yup, I know, sounds boring. But I used to work at a private aviation company and we saw direct application of technology to aid the aviation industry.

Our application was used extensively by company dispatchers to do flight planning, tail routing and maintain operational safety. And boy – you do not want production bugs when you are flying business executives and Hollywood or sports celebrities. Glitches in our software could bring down planes and the company would probably not recover from the public relations disaster.

Sure we had some scary moments, but overall it was pride and craftsmanship in our applications that kept planes flying safely – day in and day out. I wish we had Xamarin for making cross-platform mobile apps back in those days.

This article combines two of my passions – a pure love for aviation and building connected mobile apps with Xamarin.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

Advertisements

Jumpstart Your Xamarin App Development

So you want to build a mobile app? Your developer zen will quickly be threatened by the plethora of ways you can go about building a modern, cross-platform mobile app today. The below illustration shows an assortment of just a few of the technologies that you can use and the most common frameworks/platforms used for each.

This is what we have done to ourselves over the last 10 years. Choice is a good thing for developers, except that too much choice can become a little crippling.

On a positive note, the choice of technology stack becomes much easier once you decide to focus on what matters most – your skills and expertise. In today’s age, you really want to build truly cross-platform mobile apps from single codebase and preferably have the app be native to each platform. If your developer background is .NET, you’ll possibly lean towards using C# with Xamarin.

Xamarin lets you to build modern cross-platform mobile apps using your .NET skills. You write C#/XAML and your code gets cross-compiled down to native bits on each platform. This article walks you through some essential tooling that you should have in your arsenal for Xamarin development, as well as how to jumpstart your app with some polished UI.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

Engineering the Future of .NET

While there is a huge army of engineers at Microsoft who work on .NET and C#, the following folks are arguably the most influential in bringing you the future of .NET and .NET Tooling.

  1. Scott Hunter
  2. Rich Lander
  3. Damian Edwards
  4. David Fowler
  5. Mads Kristensen
  6. Mads Torgersen

Let’s say you had an opportunity to have all of them sit down at a roundtable panel and fire away blunt honest questions. What would you ask?

This article dives into the mock questions I would ask, along with responses that are my personal best guess to the answers. Could my answers not reflect actual opinions shared by the team at Microsoft? Sure, but I’m hoping folks from the .NET team can jump in to correct me if I am way off base.

This is a rather interesting time for .NET – what’s being done shapes the future of .NET for the next decade. Let’s ask the honest questions and hopefully all of us will understand the new .NET ecosystem a little better.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

The .NET CLI Decoded

You have done it hipsters. Thanks to you, we’re back in the 80’s and command line tooling is cool again – even for .NET development. Guess what else is hot? ASCII art! I’m contemplating adding some ASCII artwork on top of my C# code files, before heading out for the evening in my skinny jeans. That’s savage!

 

Jokes aside – the command line is really cool and powerful. And CLI tooling provides developers with lots of flexibility to aid in development and DevOps workflows, in addition to appealing to our inner geekiness. With the new .NET Core framework, the focus is squarely on CLI tooling to lower the barrier to entry and make .NET development accessible to all.

Whether you use Windows, OSX or Linux, the command line works the same way everywhere. Let us explore some of the new cross-platform .NET CLI tooling.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

Biometric Authentication with Microsoft Passport

Information security is hard. Managing user authentication and authorization in apps/services usually gives developers an additional layer of headache on top of making applications actually work. Windows Hello and Microsoft Passport promise to be solid options for solving these issues.

Windows Hello offers easy biometric authentication that is integrated into Windows 10, taking away much of the pain around managing user credentials. But user authentication is just the first step of the problem. How do developers leverage biometrics to authorize users to apps/services?

That responsibility falls on Microsoft Passport – a seamless 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) system using device and user biometrics. Reusable user credentials can finally be replaced by biometrics and hardware-level security, thus enabling apps/services to offer robust built-in security.

This article unpacks Microsoft Passport and offers a walkthrough of how to utilize Microsoft Passport to power your apps. Seamless biometric security is wonderful, especially when you have the ability to leverage it in your apps. Let’s dive in.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

Say Hello to Windows Hello

You come across a killer app, but it needs another set of user credentials for you to remember for authentication. Could this be the straw that breaks the camel’s back? Especially with the constant stories of widespread enterprise hacking that expose consumer data, something has to change, right?

Windows Hello offers easy biometric authentication integrated into Windows 10. Windows Hello promises seamless 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) using device and user biometrics, taking away much of the pain around managing user credentials. Has this been tried and failed in the past? Yes. But Windows Hello has a better shot at success with well-thought-out features and reusable authorization.

In this article, we’ll unpack Windows Hello to help you understand the specifics.

Full article over @ Telerik Developer Network.

.NET Developers – Love Thy Command Line

For the last decade, Windows or .NET developers using Visual Studio have been shielded from the command line. Why do we need command line tools when just about everything needed for app development is right there in Visual Studio? Simply use the extensive IDE menu options or the right-click to access additional operations through the context menus. As a result, command line tooling has often been thought of as counter productive and meant for the über geeks.

But are rich IDEs making developers lazy? Why do we depend on having a UI to perform even the simplest of tasks? Do you keep hearing people boast of the power and flexibility of the command line? Or of features that you just cannot invoke from your IDE? Relax – the command line isn’t difficult to use. With a little practice, you can master the art and have a lot of power at your disposal.

The new .NET is lean, modular and cross-platform with a much lower barrier to entry. And since developers can now choose any IDE and OS of their choice, the commonality between Windows, OSX and Linux becomes the command line. Command line tooling for .NET works the same way on any platform.

This article distills down the most common and useful command line tooling for the new .NET. We’ll dispense with any cat pictures and funny memes and focus on just creating a straight up developer cheat sheet for .NET command line tooling.

Full article over at Telerik Developer Network.

The Era of Portable .NET

The .NET framework has had quite the journey from conception until today. Yet, every iteration from .NET 1.0 to .NET 4.5, almost invariably required kittens to die, as you painstakingly upgraded your apps and the .NET runtimes. The challenge, in part, was because of the giant monolithic .NET framework that all your apps depended on.

All that changes moving forward.

The new .NET framework is modern, lean, modular and open source. No longer is .NET a system-wide installation – it is merely a folder. Instead of a huge underlying framework, you only pick and choose the pieces of the .NET framework that you need in your apps. And more importantly, you can package the required components of the .NET framework right alongside your app. We’re entering an age of app-runtime silos and ultimate portability.

This article shows you .NET’s portability with modern ASP.NET web applications.

Read the whole article on TDN over HERE.

Adios!

Building NativeScript UI for .NET Developers

NativeScript is a framework for building cross-platform native mobile apps, with JavaScript. The ability to build cross-platform truly native apps from a single code base of JavaScript/TypeScript, XML and CSS can be exciting. As we saw in Part 1 of this series, NativeScript has a lot for .NET developers: robust Visual Studio support throughout app life cycle; easy JavaScript abstractions over native APIs; and full TypeScript support for building business logic.

Perhaps you’re not convinced yet though, with your biggest concern being user interface (UI). Surely building an abstracted, cross-platform UI cannot be easy? Maybe your background is in XAML or other UI composition markups in .NET, and you are just used to a rich developer ecosystem of tooling. These are valid concerns, but relax.

NativeScript has your back when it comes to UI composition. It combines simple markup with an abstracted platform-specific rendering. If you’re used to the richness of XAML, I think you’ll feel right at home building native UIs with NativeScript. In this article, I’ll walk you through building a NativeScript UI from a .NET developer’s perspective – I think you’ll be excited by what we find.

Read the whole article on TDN over HERE.

Adios!

NativeScript for .NET Developers

Contrary to what it may sound like, NativeScript is not a programming language – in fact, it simply uses languages you may already know: JavaScript, CSS and XML. NativeScript is a framework for building cross-platform truly native mobile apps with JavaScript!

There is no DOM, no cross-compilation and no hybrid mobile WebViewrendering. You have a single codebase of JavaScript, XML and CSS towards making a native app that runs cross-platform. NativeScript as a platform is open source, and offers free developer tooling via the Command Line Interface (CLI).

Now, it may sound like NativeScript is mostly catering to JavaScript developers – you know, those skinny jeans hipsters, so to speak. While you may respect non-Microsoft developers, perhaps you are not one of them. Maybe you are a .NET developer on the Microsoft stack and rather proud of it. If so, you’d have good reason – it is one of the richest possible developer ecosystems and with some of the best tooling available.

It turns out, NativeScript has lots and lots of appeal for .NET developers. You’re going to enjoy the possibilities. Let’s dive in.

Read the whole article on TDN over HERE.

Adios!