Showing posts with label .Net. Show all posts
Showing posts with label .Net. Show all posts

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Predictive Models? Machine Learning? .NET App? Free Redist? Syncfusion has something you might like...

Deploy predictive models inside .NET applications

Dear customer,

We are excited to announce that we have shipped a breakthrough product that allows you to deploy predictive analytics solutions inside .NET applications.

Predictive modeling

What if you could use existing information to make predictions? Predictive modeling is truly one of the best-kept secrets. It has been used for decades by the largest firms in the world, enabling them to make smart, data-driven decisions. However, in spite of such tremendous benefits, few organizations have been able to justify the costs associated with modeling and deployment.

Times have changed. There are now a variety of modeling environments available to suit every budget. R is completely free and can produce excellent models. SPSS and SAS are leading commercial options.

Once you build and validate a model that works for your needs, you will need to deploy it within your .NET application. This task is often challenging and one in which the most fees lurk. You have to invoke the modeling environment’s runtime in most cases, and this often presents expensive commercial licensing costs and significant technical hurdles.

Essential Predictive Analytics changes everything

Essential Predictive Analytics from Syncfusion changes all this. You can now build models using any environment including R, SAS and SPSS, and then deploy with no dependency on these environments. The developed model are serialized in the open Predictive Model Markup Language (PMML) format. Essential Predictive Analytics includes a .NET execution engine that can execute the PMML model and provide real-time results from within your .NET applications without any third party dependencies.

Essential Predictive Analytics is included with Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition (ESEE). As with the rest of ESEE, there are absolutely no runtime fees or royalties whether you deliver to a small group of users or to millions around the world....

Syncfusion - Essential Predictive Analytics

Make data-driven decisions

In today’s data-driven world, the most successful companies will be those that utilize available data to make timely data-driven decisions. A common example would be to analyze the purchasing habits of shoppers and providing relevant coupons to get them to buy related products. Another example – what if you could build a model that could accurately predict which of your customers are likely to stop using your product or service? You already have information on customers who stopped using your service in the past. What if you could build a model that learns from past data and can then be put to work to stop churn before it happens? With Essential Predictive Analytics, you can.

 

Model using R, SAS, and SPSS and deploy using .NET

Easily develop powerful models to predict the future based on past data using R, SAS, or SPSS. The developed model can then be serialized in Predictive Model Markup Language (PMML) format. Essential Predictive Analytics includes a .NET execution engine that can execute the PMML model and provide real-time results from within your .NET applications without any third-party dependencies.

 

Absolutely no deployment fees

Essential Predictive Analytics is included with Syncfusion Essential Studio. As with the rest of Essential Studio there are absolutely no runtime fees or royalties whether you deliver to a small group of users or to millions around the planet. Also, because there is no third-party dependency once the modeling is done, you pay no runtime fees to any other vendors. You simply produce the model using the environment of your choice and Essential Predictive Analytics will take it from there.

Truly useful models

Predictive modeling is truly one of the best kept secrets around.Companies that use predictive modeling are smarter than those that don’t. They know the right answers based on data. They make smarter decisions. In spite of such tremendous benefits, predictive modeling has long been the preserve of a select few organizations that were able to afford modeling and deployment solutions. Today, there is no reason to wait. R is completely free and can produce excellent models that can be deployed with ease using Essential Predictive Analytics.

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Now that's different and could be very, very awesome. While there are open source like solutions, I don't know if there's anything like this. It's part of their $1995 Syncfusion Essential Studio Enterprise Edition, which isn't cheap, but it IS a free redist, which is huge AND compared to other commercial solutions, pretty cheap (and plus you get everything else that's in that suite too!

To get a nice feel for this, check out their demo;

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I'm hoping to take a much closer look at this in the coming weeks... :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Lucian Wischik highlights the new features in Visual Basic 14

The Visual Basic Team - New Language Features in Visual Basic 14

"Visual Basic 14" is the version of Visual Basic that will ship with Visual Studio 2015. In this blog post I'll talk specifically about the VB language improvements in this release. (Separately, there are a whole host of IDE and project-system improvements as well). There are two overall themes to the language improvements:

(1) Make common coding patterns a little cleaner, with easy-to-grasp syntax

(2) Fix up some irritating corners of the language that you probably already expected to work.

This release will be easier to digest than was Visual Basic 12, with its introduction of async! (The version number of Visual Basic has gone straight from 12 to 14, skipping 13. We did this to keep in line with the version numbering of Visual Studio itself.)

I'll only talk here about the most important new language features. For a full exhaustive list, look at roslyn.codeplex.com > Documentation > Language Features.

(Note: I've used animated gifs in this blog-post because the language features shine the best when you see them in action. The longest gif is only 8 seconds so if you miss the start, keep watching! If you don't like the animation, please see the version of this post with still before/after pictures.

The ?. operator

The new ?. operator is an easier way to check whether something is null before dotting into it. ...

The NameOf operator ...

String Interpolation

String interpolation is my favourite feature this release. I know that ?. is more powerful, and nameof() will make my code more robust, but every time I type an interpolated string it gives me a little shiver of excitement! Here's how it looks: ...

Multiline Strings

You used to have to use cumbersome workarounds to get multiline strings in VB. Thankfully VB14 now supports multiline strings literals directly: ...

Readonly Auto-properties

We've made it considerably easier to write readonly auto-properties. Here's how you do it:...

Comments

Comments are now handled better in statements that split over multiple lines. This is particularly nice for LINQ expressions. Look at these "before" and "after" videos... previously it was simply an error to include these comments: ...

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Love to see VB continue to get some love... :)

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

XML Notepad (fka XML Notepad 2007) gets some rev love, now v2.6 (& .NET 4.0 and bug squashing)

Software Complexity - Update to XML Notepad

As  XML has exploded across the planet I continue to get many requests for improvements to my XML Notepad of 2007.  The tool has been downloaded over a million times, so I figured it's time to show it some love and fix some bugs.  In the process I updated it to NET 4.0 using VS 2013.  I was amazed how everything from back then still works, including the Unit Tests.  That is pretty amazing platform compatibility.  Windows is a great platform and Visual Studio is still best of breed for software development, and I still love C#.

...

You can download it from here; Welcome to Microsoft XML Notepad

Microsoft XML Notepad is a lightweight and fast tool for editing XML documents. XML has proliferated the planet and XML Notepad has been downloaded over a million times!

Or you can head over to the Project's CodePlex repo;

XML Notepad

XML Notepad provides a simple intuitive User Interface for browsing and editing XML documents.

This application is built using .NET Framework 4.0 in C#.

See XML Notepad Design for information about how this application is built.

The downloadable installer for the latest version is available.

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When I find an interesting project I'll usually try to grab an Feed for it, so I can track updates, releases, etc. I was pleasantly surprised when the CodePlex feed for this project suddenly became active with check-ins, and then this official release.

 

Related Past Post XRef:
XML Notepad 2007 Source Now Available on CodePlex
XML Notepad 2007 2.3 Released

TFS Word Add-In is now an OSS "Sample"

Willy's Reflections - Visual Studio ALM Rangers - Team Foundation Server Word Add-in goes OSS as a “sample”

We are pleased to announce that the release of Team Foundation Server Word Add-in as a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution. Moving to OSS will allow the community to use it in their own ways

...

Team Foundation Server Word Add-in - Version 1.2 OSS Word 2013 TFS 2013

Release Notes

Welcome to the Visual Studio Team Foundation Server Word Add-in
The Team Foundation Server Word Add-In is a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution. Moving to OSS will allow the community to use it in their own ways.
Review these and other solutions, if you need a production Team Foundation Server and Microsoft Word integration:

Also bookmark Visual Studio ALM Community Widgets for community widgets and tools.

Source Code
This package contains the same code which was checked in to version control when we released the source code. This is the only and last download package for this project.

Supported Environments

  • Microsoft Office Word 2013 (32-bit, 64-bit)
  • Team Foundation Server 2013 Object Model

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Given the commercial products that do what this Add-in does and more, and that it had kind of been languishing for a bit, I think it's pretty cool that the ALM Ranger Team bit the bullet and instead of just killing it, released it as OSS/Prototype/Sample/Example-ware. I did have to laugh at the emphasis on "as a sample solution, based on a prototype, not a production solution." That so sounds like some of the utilities/apps/etc I've released. :)

Look, if you don't want to pay for a solution (we'll leave it aside as to why is there a supported/free Excel Add-in for TFS and not one for Word... grumble... grumble) you now have this, with the source, so run with it...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
From TFS to Word and back again... AIT WordToTFS 2010 (Reg-ware)
“Team for Word” hooks Word to Team Foundation Server for free (source available too, GPLv2)
Access TFS from Word 2003...

Monday, December 01, 2014

Visual Studio 2013.2+ and 2015 Child Process Debugging Power Tool

Microsoft Application Lifecycle Management - Introducing the Child Process Debugging Power Tool

We’ve heard your feedback that you want the Visual Studio debugger to support child process debugging. Child process debugging means that when the application you are debugging creates another process, Visual Studio will detect this and automatically attach a debugger to the newly created process as well. To address this we’re releasing a power tool for Visual Studio that will enable you to do just this. Some important things to note:

  • Download the tool from the Visual Studio Gallery
  • The power tool requires at least Visual Studio 2013 Update 2 (will work with any higher update version and Visual Studio 2015)
  • The tool works for both launching projects (F5), and for attaching to processes
  • It requires a native debugger. This means if you are debugging .NET code, you must choose to enable mixed mode debugging (so managed and native)—this is done from the “Debug” tab on the project properties page (for most managed project types this is done by checking the “Enable native code debugging” checkbox under the “Enable debuggers” section of the page)

Once you install the power tool from the Visual Studio Gallery, a new menu item will appear on the “Debug” menu under the “Other Debug Targets” sub-menu.

...

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This is one of those tools where if you've wanted it you have REALLY want it, and if not, you could care less. If you are one of the "Care Less'ers," just favorite this for now, you might very well need this one day (I don't need to tell the Care'ers because they left this page at first read to go download it... :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Microsoft gets wild on GitHub - Repo-repo of the Day: microsoft.github.io

microsoft.github.io

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Now that's allot of repo's. I had to smile that the code behind microsoft.github.io is, of course, hosted on GitHub.

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So do you believe yet that Microsoft, well at least DevDiv, is going all OSS out?

Check it out there's a roadmap for WPF (and no, it's not to the cemetery ;)

.NET Framework Blog - The Roadmap for WPF

When we introduced WPF back in 2006 (.NET 3.0), the response was absolutely phenomenal. Enterprises, ISV’s, and Microsoft Partners have made the technology central to their business, building amazing vertical solutions and mission critical applications for their customers. This momentum carries forward to today – 10% of all newly created projects in Visual Studio 2013 over the past 60 days are WPF. WPF has amassed a passionate, vibrant, community that uses it to build data-centric desktop business applications on Windows. A recent example of this would be a new WPF application that was developed by our partners at InterKnowlogy. This application was recently used by CNN producers in the mid-term elections to upload, validate, and configure the data seen in the on-air election application. The election data is presented on CNN’s Magic Wall, which Microsoft’s Bing Pulse team helped to develop.

This post will address the roadmap for the WPF platform, including areas of investment we’re prioritizing and tooling improvements for upcoming releases of Visual Studio.

Areas of Platform Investment

Based on a survey we conducted at the //build conference earlier this year, UserVoice suggestions, and interviews with a large number of WPF developers across a variety of market segments over the past few months, we’ve prioritized the following areas for future investments to make WPF a better platform.

Performance: While WPF is actively being used to build large-scale, high performance applications like Visual Studio and Blend, further improving the performance of the platform based on customer feedback is a priority for us. Some key scenarios we are looking to optimize in this context are application startup, scrolling and virtualization performance of ItemsControls.

DirectX interoperability: The primary scenario of interest here is to make it seamless for WPF applications to interoperate with newer versions of DirectX.

Supporting modern hardware: Technologies like touch and high density displays are ubiquitous on modern devices. To support upgrading to newer hardware, it’s important that existing WPF applications can adapt to new hardware capabilities coming to desktop machines.

Tooling: We will continue to co-evolve the tools for WPF when appropriate, alongside new platforms like .NET/WINRT. This commitment is reflected in the tooling investments section of this post.

Investments in some of these areas might introduce dependencies on a particular OS version and/or have compatibility risks. For these cases, the features will light up based on the host OS and/or might require you to opt in to use the feature.

Current Progress on WPF

Let’s first address a common question regarding support: WPF is a quintessential part of the .NET Framework. The .NET Framework is defined as a component of the operating system, instead of an independent product. So, support for .NET Framework is driven by the support lifecycle policy of the Windows operating system. Extended support for the current recommended version of .NET (4.5.2) on Windows 8.1 is available till 2023. We will continue to fix security issues and bugs reported by customers that impact a large cross-section of our WPF customers.

... [Click through for the rest]

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Okay maybe this isn't a ringing endorsement or announcement for a big bang release, but heck at least there IS a roadmap and we ARE getting fixes and features! I think this is the first WPF news, truly WPF news, that I've seen in a while and it's good to see... :)

This IS the Visual Studio you've been looking for... Hello Visual Studio Community Edition!

While Visual Studio Express (Web, Windows, Windows Desktop) is nice and better since they moved from Language Express editions, the fact that the Express editions have always been pretty locked down only a very few VS Extensions were available made them kind of half-empty editions.

Today that changes.

The three Express editions are still available but we now also have a new expanded, and extendable, Visual Studio Community Edition (VSCE)! Best of all VSCE is available at the same price point of the Express editions, that is, free!

Free for indie's, single programmers, oss and such. Enterprises? You (we) still need to buy Pro/Premier/Ultimate to comply with the license.

This is essentially VS Pro, but free. Now, no more barriers, get your coding on!

Visual Studio Community 2013 with Update 4

Download Visual Studio Community for a free, full-featured IDE with powerful coding productivity features, cross-platform mobile development tools for Windows, iOS and Android, and access to thousands of extensions. This edition of Visual Studio is available at no cost for non-enterprise application development.

Sign in to Visual Studio within 30 days with your Microsoft account to synchronize your settings across multiple machines and register your product.

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

A glimpse at how Infragistics uses a C# to JavaScript transcompiler, powered by "Roslyn" (.NET Compiler Platform)

Infragistics - Mike Dour's Blog - Client-Side Excel Library CTP

If you haven’t seen it already, we recently released a 100% JavaScript-only, client-side Excel library for Ignite UI and I’m super excited about it. It allows you to read, write, and manipulate Excel workbooks. You can even create and solve formulas, all from inside the browser!! It was released in 14.2 as a CTP so we could get your feedback on it, but we will be releasing a complete RTM version in 15.1. You can find information and a live sample of it here. Definitely check out the overview page, which is packed with important information for using this library.

But that’s not even the coolest part. Not only did we deliver a purely JavaScript library for Excel workbooks, but it has all the features of our existing .NET Excel libraries. Did we re-write the entire C# Excel library in JavaScript to provide this level of feature parity? We could have, but it would have taken a lot of effort getting there not to mention the ongoing challenge of maintaining feature parity between the versions and addressing bugs in both implementations. So we came up with something better. We built a C# to JavaScript source-to-source compiler, or transcompiler. We have actually been using this for a few releases now to deliver some of the Ignite UI controls, but it was missing support for some constructs being used in the C# Excel library. So we really beefed up its language support as well as changed its semantic analysis engine. Now based on Microsoft’s .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") for C# semantic analysis, our transcompiler is able to read in our existing C# Excel library and generate semantically equivalent JavaScript code. There are still a few rough edges to smooth out, but we are currently addressing these issues to deliver the highest quality Excel library we can in the next release.

Unfortunately, one of those rough edges was in documentation. ...

...

So hopefully this can help you get started with the Client-Side Excel library preview. There are a few things that don’t work properly yet (such as loading files with dates), but what we have provided should give you a good sense of what’s to come in 15.1. Please let us know what you think and if there are any pain points with the API or ways you think we can do better to make this library as easy as possible to use. Let us know at igniteui@infragistics.com. We look forward to your feedback. Thanks!

While you guys know I have something of a fanboy crush on Infragistics (come on, I've been using their stuff, in many forms since its VBX days... ;) that's not why I'm blogging about this. What I wanted to highlight is how they are using .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") as their transcompiler to take the C# and generate JavaScript...

"...We built a C# to JavaScript source-to-source compiler, or transcompiler. We have actually been using this for a few releases now to deliver some of the Ignite UI controls, but it was missing support for some constructs being used in the C# Excel library. So we really beefed up its language support as well as changed its semantic analysis engine. Now based on Microsoft’s .NET Compiler Platform ("Roslyn") for C# semantic analysis, our transcompiler is able to read in our existing C# Excel library and generate semantically equivalent JavaScript code. ..."

That's just cool. And something I wonder if they will productize? (If so, that wouldn't be cheap as I bet that's some serious IP). Still the fact they even share that this is some of their secret sauce is nice (see, I'm not a fanboy for just any reason.... ;)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

SharpDevelop 5.0 is Final as in Final, but "... not the final version of SharpDevelop"

SharpDevelop - SharpDevelop 5.0 Final

After five Betas and one RC we are finally hitting release for SharpDevelop 5.0. Here is a recap of some of the most important features and changes from the various development stages (in short):

Item #1 in this list definitely begs the question "What about VB.NET?" I'd like to extend this question to "What's in the future of SharpDevelop?"

We have componentized SharpDevelop intentionally for what is coming now - the as-of-today core team moving to specific areas of our ecosystem. Think ILSpy. Think AvalonEdit. Yes, this means that the IDE iself is going to take a back seat. There are a couple of reasons for this decision...

...

Long story short - SharpDevelop is far from "done" (we'd never claim that), but we (the current core team) are realigning our efforts for visibility in the near term. This does not mean SharpDevelop is on "life support" or "dead". It means that bug fixing, small improvements and minor features have priority. Big shiny new things are up to contributions which we are more than happy to accept and help with, simply ping us on the developer mailing list to get started.

Like the post title says: 5.0 final, and not the final version of SharpDevelop. ...

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I've only been watching this project for a decade and they are only on v5? (cough.... slow pokes... cough)? Just Kidding! These guys rock, with not only an awesome IDE (that's free and OSS), but in all other projects under their belt, like Avalon, ILSpy, etc. And their call out to the community for contributions is very valid. If there's a missing feature, "Don't whine, do..." :)

 

Related Past Post XRef:
SharpDevelop 5 goes MIT and Beta 1 too!
SharpDevelop gets T4 support
NuGet isn’t just for Visual Studio anymore… NuGet coming soon to SharpDevelop
NuGet your Avalon (SharpDevelop’s AvalonEdit and ICSharpCode.TextEditor, plus samples, are now available via NuGet)
SharpDevelop (aka #develop) 3.0 RTM’s
SharpDevelop for Applications (SDA)
Web Development with SharpDevelop, Web Matrix, and DBGCLR
SourceForge.net: #develop 1.0.2a stopgap release
SourceForge.net: #develop 1.0.2 available for download
SharpDevelop 1.0 Released

Monday, October 27, 2014

".NET Serializers Comparison Chart" - Six Serializers compared

manski's blog - .NET Serializers Comparison Chart

There are many object serializers in C#/.NET but their details are often not so obvious, for example:

  • Does my class need a parameterless constructor?
  • Can I serialize private fields?
  • Can I serialize readonly fields?

So, I’ve compiled a comparison chart in this article that will compare the various serializers and their capabilities.

Table of Contents

...

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Great post comparing native and one of the bellwether third party components. Great write-up, presentation and content.

One James McCaffrey, Two Succinctly's - "Machine Learning Using C# Succinctly" & "Neural Networks Using C# Succinctly" (& 50 free eBooks)

Machine Learning Using C# Succinctly

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In Machine Learning Using C# Succinctly, you’ll learn several different approaches to applying machine learning to data analysis and prediction problems. Author James McCaffrey demonstrates different clustering and classification techniques, and explains the many decisions that must be made during development that determine how effective these techniques can be. McCaffrey provides thorough examples of applying k-means clustering to group strictly numerical data, calculating category utility to cluster both qualitative and quantitative information, and even using neural network classification to predict the output of previously unseen data.

Table of Contents
  1. k-Means Clustering
  2. Categorical Data Clustering
  3. Logistic Regression Classification
  4. Naïve Bayes Classification
  5. Neural Network Classification

Neural Networks Using C# Succinctly

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Neural networks are an exciting field of software development used to calculate outputs from input data. While the idea seems simple enough, the implications of such networks are staggering—think optical character recognition, speech recognition, and regression analysis. With Neural Networks Using C# Succinctly by James McCaffrey, you'll learn how to create your own neural network to solve classification problems, or problems where the outcomes can only be one of several values. Learn about encoding and normalizing data, activation functions and how to choose the right one, and ultimately how to train a neural network to find weights and bias values that provide accurate predictions. Download the book today!

Table of Contents
  1. Neural Networks
  2. Perceptrons
  3. Feed-Forward
  4. Back-Propagation
  5. Training

Two pretty deep drives for you today. Also an interesting milestone, Machine Learning Using C# Succinctly is Syncfusion's 50th free ebook!

 

Related Past Post XRef:
"Localization for .NET Succinctly"
"Visual Studio 2013 Succinctly" free [reg-ware] now available from... you guessed it, Syncfusion
"Windows Phone 8 Succinctly - The practical approach to Windows Phone 8 development" eBook (Reg-ware)
Succinctly eBook of the Day: "Twitter Bootstrap Succinctly" [Reg-ware]
Need some help up the WPF learning curve? "WPF Succinctly" from Syncfusion is now available (and free :)
TypeScript Succinctly - Free [Name/email-ware] eBook
Getting sharp with F# with the free "F# Succinctly" eBook [reg-ware]
Syncfusion helps shed a little succinct light on LightSwitch with "LightSwitch Succinctly" (Reg-ware)
"JavaScript Succinctly" - Another free (reg-ware) eBook from Syncfusion
Get into sync with HTTP with the new free (reg-ware) Syncfusion Succinctly eBook, "HTTP Succinctly"
Spelunk the technical details of the PDF format with "PDF Succinctly" from Syncfusion (Free/reg-ware PDF/Mobi ebook)
"Git Succinctly" Free/reg-ware PDF/Mobi ebook)
jQuery Succinctly - Free eBook (reg-ware, PDF and/or Mobi)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Want to help drive .NET forward? Here's your call to action and comment...

http://tirania.org/blog/ - .NET Foundation: Forums and Advisory Council

Today, I want to share some news from the .NET Foundation.

Forums: We are launching the official .NET Foundation forums to engage with the larger .NET community and to start the flow of ideas on the future of .NET, the community of users of .NET, and the community of contributors to the .NET ecosystem.

Please join us at forums.dotnetfoundation.org. We are using the powerful Discourse platform. Come join us!

Advisory Council: We want to make the .NET Foundation open and transparent. To achieve that goal, we decided to create an advisory council. But we need your help in shaping the advisory council: its role, its reach, its obligations and its influence on the foundation itself.

To bootstrap the discussion, we have a baseline proposal that was contributed by Shaun Walker. We want to invite the larger .NET community to a conversation about this proposal and help us shape the advisory council.

...

.NET Foundation - .NET Foundation Advisory Council Call for Public Comment

Friends in the .NET community,

When the .NET Foundation was created, there was an important principle that the foundation and its work be transparent, open, and community driven. In order to ensure that the foundation delivers on this primary objective, the board of the .Net Foundation asked Shaun Walker, who has a long history leading and contributing to .Net open source projects, to develop an initial proposal for a community based advisory council to help guide the governance of the .NET Foundation. That proposal is now available for community comment.

There are many reasons we feel that an advisory council is needed. Our goal is to ensure that the foundations operation and governance is both efficient and effective when viewed from a community building perspective. Some of the practical reasons for the creation of the council are:

  • Providing a clear communication channel between the community and the board on the foundations community building activities. To provide a channel for community stakeholders to provide feedback and guidance on the foundations value proposition, governance model, and other important foundation level decisions.
  • Provide a set of known, high profile individuals who can advocate for and evangelize the benefits and services provided by the .Net foundation and evangelize the foundation’s mission.
  • Establishes a group of individuals, experienced in open source community cultivation and project governance, who can provide stewardship, education and leadership to open source .NET projects of all size, popularity, and stature.
  • To augment the capacity of the board, and distribute work of the foundation across more community members to increase the governance bandwidth of the foundation.

The proposal outlines the rationale for the advisory council, along with ...

What is the .NET Foundation?

We foster open development, collaboration and community engagement on the .NET platform. The .NET Foundation is the steward of a growing collection of open source technologies for.NET, Microsoft’s comprehensive development framework. The .NET Foundation includes popular open source .NET projects such as the .NET Compiler Platform (“Roslyn”), ASP.NET MVC, Xamarin's Mimekit and Mailkit, and many others.

Background

Announced at the Build 2014 conference, the .NET Foundation was created as an independent forum to foster open development and collaboration around the growing collection of open source technologies for .NET....

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Think of it as where ASP.NET vNext lives... (So yeah, it's kind of a big deal)  Visual Studio "14" CTP 2 is now available. There's many more CTP's coming, ALL CAPS are not, no TFS "14" CTP's, don't side-by-side this CTP and more...

Thursday, October 09, 2014

MVVM Light V5 for Windows, Xamarin and * (pretty much everywhere you'd want to .NET MVVM)

Laurent Bugnion (GalaSoft) - Announcing MVVM Light V5 for Windows and Xamarin

Here at the Xamarin Evolve conference in Atlanta, I just announced the immediate availability of MVVM Light V5. This version runs on the following platforms:

  • Windows Presentation Foundation (3.5, 4, 4.5, 4.5.1)
  • Silverlight (4 and 5)
  • Windows Phone (7.1, 8, 8.1 Silverlight, 8.1 RT)
  • Windows Store (8, 8.1)
  • Xamarin Android
  • Xamarin iOS
  • Xamarin Forms

What’s new?

There are three major changes in this version: Xamarin Support, NavigationService and DialogService, and Portable Class Library support.

...

Visual Studio Gallery - MVVM Light (VS2013)

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The MVVM Light Toolkit is a set of components helping people to get started in the Model - View - ViewModel pattern in Windows 8, Silverlight, WPF, Windows Phone, Xamarin Android and Xamarin iOS. It is a light and pragmatic framework that contains only the essential components needed. It includes classes such as RelayCommand, Messenger, ViewModelBase and ObservableObject, SimpleIoc and more.

MVVM Light Toolkit (http://www.mvvmlight.net/)

Jump to: Intro / Documentation / Installation and Creation / Source and Codeplex / Support / Donate / Credits / Praises

...

Introduction

The main purpose of the toolkit is to accelerate the creation and development of MVVM applications in WPF, Silverlight, Windows Store (RT) and for Windows Phone.

The MVVM Light Toolkit helps you to separate your View from your Model which creates applications that are cleaner and easier to maintain and extend. It also creates testable applications and allows you to have a much thinner user interface layer (which is more difficult to test automatically).

This toolkit puts a special emphasis on the "blendability" of the created application (i.e. the ability to open and edit the user interface into Blend), including the creation of design-time data to enable the Blend users to "see something" when they work with data controls.

...

My current workday MVVM framework of choice is Caliburn.Micro, but I keep seeing more and more projects using MVVM Light, to the point where I think I'm going to have to check it out... That and it's hard to beat how portable it is. :)

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

The Xamarin.Forms excitement continues to build, getting broad third party support and more...

Like I said here, Cool Preview eBook of the Day: "Creating Mobile Apps with Xamarin.Forms" by Charles Petzold (Yes, that one), Xamrin.Forms is generating allot of excitement in the .NET/Xaml space and the excitement continues to build with the announcement of top tier third party support. Infragistics and Syncfusion both just announced support for Xamarin.Forms, among other top tier vendors, Enterprise Component Vendors Join Xamarin.Forms Ecosystem. Heck, even Microsoft is getting into the game!

Infragistics - Announcing Infragistics Xamarin.Forms!

I am very excited to announce a new partnership with Xamarin and our newest product release to compliment our Native Mobile story with Visual Studio – Infragistics Xamarin.Forms.

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Over the last few years we have invested heavily in the native UI controls - we have an iOS control set, Android control set and Windows Phone control set.  Up until now, the target developer for these control sets were your objective-C, Java or Windows Developer.  Now with Infragistics Xamarin.Forms, the market is super-expanded - any Visual Studio, C#, XAML Developer can now write once, a single codebase, and then take our new Xamarin.Forms product with Xamarin’s product and ship native apps that target each major platform in no time..

There are a ton of reasons why this is so exciting, but from a pure cost perspective, using the technology from Infragistics & Xamarin, a company does not need to invest in the training and time loss of learning a new platform – using current C# & XAML skillsets native apps can be churned out in no time compared to building a native experience from scratch on each major mobile platform.  Add the long-term maintenance costs of bug fixes, feature changes, UI updates and more, and you are looking at a significant cost savings if you have a single code base to maintain while still having the benefit of native apps on each major platform.  Pretty cool!

So what exactly are we shipping today?

...

Syncfusion - Essential Studio for Xamarin has Arrived

As part of our participation in the Xamarin Evolve 2014 conference this week, Syncfusion is excited to reveal a new control suite for cross-platform mobile development: Essential Studio for Xamarin. We’ve incorporated some of your favorite data visualization and file-format components from Syncfusion with Xamarin.Forms, an API that enables developers to use a single C# codebase to build UIs for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone apps.

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Native apps built with Essential Studio for Xamarin

Essential Studio for Xamarin is MVVM-compatible and includes a total of six Syncfusion controls. The Chart, TreeMap, and Gauge UI tools provide enterprise-grade processing and interactive visualization for your business data. File-format APIs XlsIO, DocIO, and PDF allow users to easily read, write, and edit Excel, Word, and PDF files on any device.

With Essential Studio for Xamarin, you can:

...

Multilingual App Toolkit's blog MAT v4.0 Technical Preview adds Xamarin support

The Multilingual App Toolkit v4.0 Technical Preview adds support for VS + Xamarin based iOS and Android projects.  We are super excited (just had to say it) about adding MAT’s localization workflow for developers using Visual Studio and Xamarin to create great cross-platform apps! You can download it here

I am fortunate enough to be in attendance at Xamarin Evolve 2014 this week. On Monday I attended a training session presented by Craig Dunn on Xamarin localization.  Craig did a great job covering localization in general, then focused on iOS and Android projects specifics as well as RESX with Xamarin Forms.  Craig’s demo code is available on GitHub.  So of course I wanted to see how the v4.0 technical preview would handle the code.  The demo is pre-populated with the target RESX files, so I simply removed them before using MAT v4.0 preview to add Japanese (JA) and Arabic (AR).  After generating translating using the default translation providers.  As you can tell from the images below everything worked as expected.

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...

Given Xamarin Evolve 2014 still has a couple days to go (ends on the 10th), and given all the other announcements Xamarin have made, such as Xamarin Platform Previews, Introducing Xamarin Insights: Real-time Monitoring for Your Apps and New Xamarin Test Cloud Features I wonder what else we'll hear and see?

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Cool Preview eBook of the Day: "Creating Mobile Apps with Xamarin.Forms" by Charles Petzold (Yes, that one)

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Looks like .NET vNext IS going to be .NET 4.5.3 (maybe)...

.NET Framework Blog - Announcing October 2014 Updates to .NET Framework vNext, ASP.NET vNext and .NET Native in Visual Studio “14” CTP4

Today, we are announcing updates to the .NET Framework vNext, ASP.NET vNext and .NET Native. These are all available in Visual Studio “14” CTP4. This .NET Framework release contains RyuJIT, the next generation X64 JIT. ASP.NET vNext contains major improvements in the runtime and Visual Studio Experience. Additionally, .NET Native contains a small set of fixes for reported issues. Please download these .NET releases with Visual Studio “14” CTP4 and give us feedback.

.NET Framework vNext

Today’s release of .NET Framework vNext adds RyuJIT and ~ 150 new APIs. We have released multiple standalone versions of RyuJIT, after introducing you to it almost exactly one year ago. RyuJIT is the new Just-In-Time (JIT) compiler, now integrated into the .NET Framework and enabled by default for 64-bit processes.

We’ve added ~150 new APIs across the product to make many scenarios easier. We’ve also updated ~50 more APIs (mostly types). In particular, we sprinkled IReadOnlyCollection<T> in more parts of the Framework libraries to make collections easier and more intuitive to use.

You can see the changes in this diff from the .NET Framework 4.5.2 to .NET Framework 4.5.3.

You may be wondering when we’ll ship a separate redistributable for the .NET Framework vNext, like we’ve had for all other .NET Framework versions. We haven’t forgotten about it. It’s still coming.

...

ASP.NET vNext

...

.NET Native

...

Summary

..."

I blogged about this in August, .NET vNext doesn't currently look like it's side-by-side "5.x," instead it's an in-place update like a 4.5.+ (so maybe 4.6'ish... ?), but this is the first time I think I've seen an official'ish post giving it a version number, 4.5.3...

Now, we're still a ways from RTW, but the picture appears to be getting a little clearer...

BTW, the mentioned Diff spreadsheet is interesting (if you find that find of stuff interesting at least). Here's a snap of it.

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Related Past Post XRef:
.NET vNext doesn't currently look like it's side-by-side "5.x," instead it's an in-place update like a 4.5.+ (so maybe 4.6'ish... ?)

Using .NET 4, 4.5, 4.5.1? Only 4.5.2 will be receiving technical support and security updates after Jan 12, 2016 (so start your 4.5.2 planning/deployment...)
Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5.2 Released
.NET Framework setup verification, cleanup tool and detection code (C++) updated for 4.5.2

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Problems installing .NET 3.5 on Windows 8 or Windows Server 2012 R2? Like error: 0x800F0906? Check for an already in-place 3.5 Update...

I thought it interesting and kind of telling that these two different (through very similar, same base, etc) platforms have this same issue...

Also these two posts are nice guides if you run into other related kinds of problems like this...

Ask Premier Field Engineering (PFE) Platforms - Attempting to Install .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2012 R2 Fails with Error Code 0x800F0906 or “the source files could not be downloaded”, even when supplying source

In one of my prior posts, I mentioned a step required when installing .Net Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2012 or later operating systems. Specifically, I mentioned the need to supply the source for the .Net files because this is one of the few components we do not stage to the component store on Windows Server 2012 and later. One of the bullets in the things to keep in mind section at the bottom of this blog reads:

If you are attempting to install .Net Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2012, instead of specifying the install.wim, you need to specify the Sources\SxS directory on the DVD or if providing the source, the files in the SXS directory copied from the DVD are just for .Net Framework 3.5. You can host them on a share and supply them through the GUI or through Group Policy just like any other feature.

Recently one of my customers ran into an issue when attempting to install .Net Framework 3.5 on Windows Server 2012 R2 using the following command:

Install-WindowsFeature –name NET-Framework-Core –source F:\sources\sxs

F:\ is the mounted Windows Server 2012 R2 ISO.

Yet it still failed with the following error:

The request to add or remove features on the specified server failed. The source files could not be downloaded. Use the "source" option to specify the location of the files that are required to restore the feature. Error: 0x800F0906

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...

So why are we getting these errors despite supplying the source?

We released a security update in August 2014 that updates .Net components. The security updates are as follows:

KB2966828: MS14-046: Description of the security update for the .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2: August 12, 2014

KB2966827: MS14-046: MS14-046: Description of the security update for the .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012: August 12, 2014

If either of these updates are installed, you will run into the above issue if your server does not have access to the Internet to pull the updated components.

How do we resolve this?

Since this customer’s servers do not have internet access, in their case, they did the following:

1) Uninstalled the security update

2) Installed .Net Framework 3.5 (which installed without error)

3) Reinstalled the update

Take a look at the following TechNet article for .Net Framework 3.5 deployment considerations:

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn482066.aspx

Here’s a link to the official Knowledge Base article on this issue:

https://support.microsoft.com/kb/3002547

How do you keep from running into this in the future?

I personally recommend that you proactively enable .Net Framework 3.5 on the server images and templates in your environment to prevent having to troubleshoot or take additional steps such as this going forward.

MSMQ from the plumber's mate - Windows 8–can’t install .Net Framework 3.5 (0x800F0906, 0x800F081F)

"I’d recently put Windows 8 on a test machine at work and started installing what software I needed. Pretty quickly I found I needed to install .Net Framework 3.5 which is now a ‘Feature’ instead of a separate download.

...

Error code 0x800F0906 leads you to troubleshooting articles such as:

.NET Framework 3.5 installation error: 0x800F0906, 0x800F081F, 0x800F0907

http://support2.microsoft.com/kb/2734782

...

Looking in the list of installed updates, I found I had KB2966827 present:

MS14-046: Description of the security update for the .NET Framework 3.5 on Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012: August 12, 2014

http://support2.microsoft.com/kb/2966827

Now why do I have a .NET Framework 3.5 hotfix installed on a machine that hasn’t yet had .NET Framework 3.5 installed?!

The presence of the hotfix meant the installation was always expecting to find newer files than came with the Windows 8 source files.

As soon as I uninstalled the hotfix, I could add the .NET Framework 3.5 feature and start using my applications.

..."

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

.NET Micro Framework gets VS 2013 support and more!

.NET Framework Blog - .NET Micro Framework now supports Visual Studio 2013

Today the .NET Micro Framework team is releasing a beta update of the .NET Micro Framework SDK that adds support for Visual Studio 2013. The release also contains other improvements that will benefit developers and hardware partners, making the install and update experience better.

Check out the .NET Micro Framework Team blog, and the Netmf.com site to learn more about .NET Micro Framework and this release. Read the Microsoft Open Technologies blog to learn more about this open source project and community engagement.

You can download the .NET Micro Framework SDK 4.3.1 (SDK R2 Beta) update from our Codeplex site. Please try it out, provide feedback and start contributing to the open source project.

Supporting for Visual Studio 2013

The .NET Micro Framework SDK now supports Visual Studio 2013. That’s welcome news, since ...

The new approach also helps hardware partners. .NET Micro Framework hardware vendors can now support multiple Visual Studio versions with a given piece of hardware and firmware. That also streamlines the overall experience for app developers, too.

A first glimpse at the upcoming support for Visual Studio “14”

The .NET Micro Framework team is looking ahead and has already started to enable support for Visual Studio “14”....

...

.NET Micro Framework is Open Source

The .NET Micro Framework is an open source project from Microsoft, licensed as Apache 2. It is developed by Microsoft engineers assigned to Microsoft Open Technologies and by others in the maker community. Hardware makers are able to use the .NET Micro Framework code from the Codeplex project without any additional license or paying any fee to Microsoft.

Next Steps

The .NET Micro Framework SDK 4.3.1. (R2 Beta) release brings key improvements and updates. ..."

This is very welcome news! In one of my not-so-secret lives, you know I'm a blogger for Microsoft Channel 9's Coding4Fun blog, where every Friday I do a Hardware Friday post (to give everyone something fun to build on the weekend of course!). One of my pet peeves when highlighting .NET Micro Framework projects was the lack of VS 2013 support. One peeve crossed out now. :)

 

Here are some more links of interest;

"Learning to Master Cross-Platform Mobile Development With Xamarin" Free (Name-Email-ware) eBook

Jesse Liberty - Free e-Book: Learning to Master Cross-Platform Mobile Development With Xamarin

The good folks at Falafel have put together all my posts (to date) on  Xamarin and Xamarin Forms into an e-book, which is available free at http://jliberty.me/masteringXamarinBook

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Some snips from the PDF...

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

.NET Universe Poster, 2014

Microsoft Downloads - .NET Universe Poster - 2014

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.NET Universe Poster (2014) showing the main .NET SDKs, libraries and packages classified by application type and package type (NuGet, official support, etc.)

Version: 2014

Date Published: 9/15/2014

File Name: poster2014_.pdf, 14.6 MB

This poster shows how the trends are changing in .NET as we´re moving from a single large .NET Framework to a more loosely coupled and autonomous libraries and sub-frameworks, many of them even published as NuGet packages and evolving continuously. The number of those libs and packages is evolving and growing, so having a visual photo of it can be helpful. The main idea of the poster is to show that you can create any kind of application with .NET, from the largest applications to the smaller apps: in the cloud, on the web, on desktops, tablets, phones, and in embedded environments (even watches!). Any of those application types is shown as category/bucket in the poster and within each bucket we´re tossing the main libraries/SDKs/packages out. Then we´re also showing cross-cutting concerns buckets like Security, Data Access, and .NET Extension libs.

The main categories are the following:

- Emerging application patterns (Mobile, Web & Cloud)

- Established application patterns (Desktop and Embedded)

- Cross-Cutting concerns Finally, the poster is putting a check/mark on every lib/SDK bullet depending if they are or not complaint with the following:

- NuGet package

- Open Source

- Microsoft Official Supported

You can print it out or use it as in electronic format (.PDF). Using the electronic format (.PDF) allows you to access each content URL/page related.

Interesting growth and evolution from last year (The .NET Universe Poster for 2013 is now available)..

 

Related Past Post XRef:
The .NET Universe Poster for 2013 is now available