It was a gray afternoon, the kind that makes people long for rain just to break up the dreary monotony of the sky. I was nursing a scotch, which was by this point in time far too diluted for my taste, as the ice had long melted. As I lit my fifth cigarette I heard a dull thump outside. Must be the paper. Late as usual.
I've been seeing code floating around that suggests that in order for you to get an assembly's version number in Windows Phone SDK 7.0/7.1 you have to call Assembly.ToString() or Assembly.FullName and then parse the output. Please don't do that. There is a better, more stable, and more supported way to get the information you seek:
This week I got a Samsung Focus Flash. It's a nice upgrade from my first-generation LG Optimus 7. Although I have a Nokia Lumia 710, I can't actually use it because it still doesn't support tethering. While the Focus Flash does support tethering (or "internet sharing"), the functionality is tied to AT&T. I don't have AT&T; I'm using an MVNO as my cellular provider. That means I simply can't activate tethering.
Every so often I see articles and news blurbs about yet another product that allows people to create a mobile app once and automagically publish it on all of the major smartphone platforms. Recently, I've seen lots of buzz around PhoneGap becoming fully-featured in regards to Windows Phone. And just today I saw an article on Slashdot about Yahoo! getting into this space. Although, as a developer and a techy, I love the idea of being able to write an app and quickly have it available on multiple platforms, I must say I do not approve of actually doing it.
I strongly believe that a distinguishing mark between a good app and a great app is resilience, or in other words, its ability to adapt to unusual conditions. Naturally, it's up to the app's architects and developers to make it resilient, but too often I see apps that break with the slightest change of an upstream API. This has been observed not only with small, relatively unknown apps, but also with some high profile ones, such as the official Facebook app for Windows Phone. Why is this behavior so prevalent?
Microsoft has released updated application certification requirements for submitting apps to the Marketplace that, according to this blog post, will go into effect on June 3 (after the release of Mango tools).
This recent Slashdot article is sure to cause some hubbub. As usual (when it comes to anything Microsoft), it's completely inaccurate. The only licenses that have been banned are GPLv3 and its derivatives and equivalents, including LGPLv3, and Affero GPLv3. Why these particular licenses, and why specifically version 3?
Since it has been made painfully obvious that Windows Phone 7 application piracy is possible, at least for developer unlocked devices, it's about time I outlined a fairly simple idea I had a couple of months back about curbing such piracy for a significant subset of the WP7 apps out there.
First, the tl;dr version is as follows: Microsoft should provide an API to get (or verify) app purchasers' anonymized Live IDs and/or Device Unique IDs.
Before I start my rant, let me preface this post by saying that I do really like WP7, from a consumer perspective (it's very responsive, good looking, and just plain fun to use) and a developer perspective (language and tools are a breeze to use, there's a lot of helpful info online, and the community is great).
I guess I haven't blogged in a few months. Oops. I probably should have, just to write down what's been happening. Here's what's relevant to this post anyway: I got a Windows Phone 7 pre-production device a while ago, and right now I'm using a production LG Optimus 7 as my everyday phone (and loving it).