10 Features in Windows 10

It’s here the Technical Preview of Windows 10. The next step in Windows, and according to Joe Belfiore all other Microsoft Devices. It’s too early to say if this will truly take over and become the next dominant OS, but there are some great features and Ideas coming that we cannot overlook.

New feature in Tech Preview:

  • New Start Menu: The familiar Start menu is back, but it brings with it a new customizable space for your favorite apps and Live Tiles.

  • Multiple desktops: Run programs in different desktops to improve multitasking and productivity.
  • Split program across desktops: Show what programs are running on different screens in a multi monitor setup.
  • Smart Snap: Lets you pick quickly what program you would like to place next snaped program.
  • Everything runs in windows: All programs including metro apps run in windows.
  • CMD Control shortcuts: You can copy, paste with CTRL+C and CTRL+V. Also Shift and control select.
  • Task bar search: You can search right from the task bar in Bing.
  • New task view button: There’s a new task-view button on the taskbar for quick switching between open files and quick access to any desktops you create.
  • Recent files and folders: You can easily see all the resent files that you have accessed from explorer.
  • New Share tab: Share files right from the explorer to any compatible app.

So there you have it some great improvements for pro and novice users. I have been using it for a couple of days and now already feel like it’s been around for years. J

Get the Tech Preview.

Lumia 930 vs iPhone 6 – Camera test

How does the new iPhone 6 challenge the might of Nokia PureView.

Here are some real world tests to see which is King. All images were taken at the same time in the phones default auto mode.

Specifications

Spec Lumia 930 IPhone 6
Primary 20 MP, 4992 х 3744 pixels, Carl Zeiss optics, optical image stabilization, autofocus, dual-LED flash 8 MP, 3264 x 2448 pixels, phase detection autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
Features 1/2.5” sensor size, 1.12 µm pixel size, PureView technology, dual capture, geo-tagging, face detection, panorama 1/3” sensor size, 1.5µm pixel size, geo-tagging, simultaneous HD video and image recording, touch focus, face/smile detection, HDR (photo/panorama)
Video 1080p@30fps, optical stabilization, stereo sound rec. 1080p@60fps, 720p@240fps
Secondary 1.2 MP, 720p 1.2 MP, 720p@30fps, face detection, FaceTime over Wi-Fi or Cellular

Ok so let’s break it down:

Primary: If you look at only the numbers the Lumia makes the iPhone look like there is no fight. With more than the Megapixels and image stabilization the Lumia 930 has way more power under the hood.

Features: The iPhone takes this one on Default apps with simultaneous Image and Video capture, HDR, Live filters and Time lapse. But the gap is shrinking fast with the Lumia Denim update. It brings Dynamic HDR , 4K moment capture and more.

Video: The Lumia has advanced stabilization and stereo surround sound recording (The first phone with this capability) and 4K coming soon. The iPhone also has empowering features like simultaneous Image and Video capture and slow motion capture.

Now for the FaceTime and Skype users. Secondary camera, they are pretty even here with both having 720p recording, and Skype and FaceTime both integrated into the OS.

With just pure numbers the Lumia 930 wins but there is more to consider.

Default App


Both have great camera apps so I’m going to give pros and cons for each and you can decide.

Nokia Camera IOS 8 Camera
Pros
Quick Smart shots Fast load
Fully customizable settings Fast Capture
  • White balance
Built in:
  • ISO
  • Panorama
  • Focus distance
  • Square
  • Shutter Speed
  • Time lapse
Quick shooting modes
  • HDR
Flash focus
Images in RAW format
Cons
Slower opening speed No full image capture customization
Need separate app for Panorama and Time lapse No Raw format
No HDR No pre focus flash
No time lapse No smart shooting

I’ll let you decide what you need in a camera app, Just remember both can use third party apps that might cover your needs better!

Pictures

A blind comparison of each sample in different conditions. Lumia 930 (5MP shot) and iPhone (8MP shot).

See original images

Figure 1-Flash on, close-up test.

Figure 2- Flash off , close-up test

Figure 3- Flash off

Figure 4- Flash on

Figure 5- Fine focus test

Figure 6- Flash off, low light, Close-up

Figure 7- Low light, no flash

Figure 8- Low light, Flash on

Figure 9-Low light, focus with flash.

See original images

Ok so now after carefully examining them and choosing your favorites.(Please post yours in the comments).

Here is each pics owner:

First Second
Figure 1: Lumia 930 iPhone 6
Figure 2: iPhone 6 Lumia 930
Figure 3: Lumia 930 iPhone 6
Figure 4: Lumia 930 iPhone 6
Figure 5: iPhone 6 Lumia 930
Figure 6: iPhone 6 Lumia 930
Figure 7: Lumia 930 iPhone 6
Figure 8: Lumia 930 iPhone 6
Figure 9: Lumia 930 iPhone 6

Hope this helps you to choose what works for you. Comment below if you would like further tests.

Last words

From what I see and my preferences the LUMIA wins. Better night capability, faster focus and the higher res pics make for great editing and memory capture. I will update my review when Denim hits and see how things change.

ENJOY J

Grow tech with YouthSpark

The Microsoft YouthSpark program aims to take the youth to IT and show them what’s possible.

Their mission is to bridge the gap between kids that have access to training and those that don’t. With over 75 million unemployed youth around the word, and millions from my home country (South Africa) I truly believe that this can help million=s understand that IT is not impossible no matter your background.


The project started in 2012 and aims to reach 500 million students across the world, with over 30 programs and more that 350 youth serving nonprofits. They have entrenched themselves in communities all over. These projects will start and Primary school and head all the way to Tertiary education.

Project examples:

 

As you can see these range from basic Computer skills to higher level IT, meaning that it can impact and help almost anybody as nearly every career will need basic IT training and this can be very expensive and might mean driving(or walking) long distances.

  • So if you would like to take part and spread the news in your area go to:

YouthSpark

And see where you can helpJ

  • If you want to utilizes this mountain of skills please try the programs and see more at

All Programs

Let’s use this amazing initiative to get everybody’s IDEAS and potential out there no matter where or who they are!!!

Here are some of the people YouthSpark has helped or helps:

YouthSpark Stars

ENJOYJ

Game Dev on Windows platforms

After spending days researching on what is the best system to build 2D or 3D game I came upon Unity. For Windows platforms it’s a weird time as MS just scraped XNA, now where do we go to make games?

Unity is an amazingly powerful and easy game development system, it is great for both 3D and 2D development. But its best feature is that with almost no effort you can publish across Windows Phone, Windows 8, IOS, Android and others.

It’s a standalone IDE that you can get from http://www.unity.com. All the features needed to develop for Windows platform are free.

Once installed its pretty simple, there are many tutorials on how to develop either for 2D or 3D online.

*As an added bonus you can code the script of the game in C#, so no new languages needed.

Featured-unity

Some tutorials I found helpful to get started.

MSP Summit at the Imagine Cup

It’s been an amazing week at the Imagine Cup, going from talking to MS directors about the latest tech and the way forward to Racing across Seattle is teams from over 60 Countries.

The competition is truly international and I have had the fortune of experiencing cultures from across the world.

So one major thing to take from this is what is Microsoft’s future. We’ll I believe Microsoft has always had a bright future but now I’m sure of it.

  • They are going back to what made them.
  • They Windows, Xbox and Windows phone teams are now one.
  • They have also unified there marketing and finance teams, speeding up interdepartmental communication.
  • Other stuff also but I cant disclose that, you know NDA.

 

So as an MSP there is no better time to help MS and grow the brand and help people from across the world especially students!!!! Microsoft offers free Dev tools to all students and free Virtual academy. If you don’t know how to access these offers please comment and I will reply with all you need 🙂

I also want to give a shout out to the Australian team that won the Imagine Cup, Well Done !!!!

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Going to MSP Summit 2014

Hey All

I know my last post said the next post would be a Universal app tutorial. but I have some great news!!!!  I’ve been invited to go to the Microsoft student partner summit in Seattle in July. So I will be posting any news from the Summit here for all of you to see 🙂 So please follow my updates as they come. 

Image

Don’t worry the dev tutorial is coming soon 🙂

 

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Starting with Universal Apps

So of course first, why make a Universal apps?

This is an important question that all of us developers ask before we spend our valuable time learning the language and rules of a new development option. Well first things first, if you already develop for Windows Phone and Windows 8, Universal apps make things twice as fast because you kill 2 birds with one stone, and for all you IOS and Android developers looking to move your apps to Windows Phone and Windows 8, its a great starting point that will make porting that much faster!!

NB: The main thing to look at when trying Sample code and you can’t find a Universal App solution, look for samples from Windows 8 store app solution. They share almost all the code and API. From there you can easily get the solution to work on your Universal app. 

Universal apps are basically made up of three projects, Windows 8.1 ,Windows Phone 8.1 and Shared.

Now this might seem strange and it is a little, but don’t fret I’ll explain it all.

  • The Windows 8.1 Project contains the XAML pages and code  made for Windows 8.1
  • The Windows Phone 8.1 Project contains the XAML pages and code  made for Windows Phone  8.1
  • The Shared project is a container for code that runs on both platforms. The contents of the Shared project are automatically included in both the Windows Phone and the Windows Store projects and in their build output.

Image

Now how to create and build a project.

Firstly, if you don’t see the Universal apps option in your ‘New Project’ window, its probably because you don’t have Visual Studio 2013 RC2.

Okay, now that you have Visual Studio 2013 RC2 lets begin.

Select the Visual C# option, Store Apps. You will see the Universal Apps option.

Options

  • Blank app
  • Hub App(Replacement for panorama on Windows Phone)
  • Class Library
  • Windows Runtime Component

Then select the option you want and click ‘OK’.

I will be showing how to make an app from scratch in my next post, stay tuned 🙂

 

KEEP YOUR IDEAS FLOWING!!!

 

How does WP 8.1 change how we develop.

Its a great time to be a developer for windows phone & windows. With all of the integration and enhancements there is a range of new directions your apps can go!!!

Firstly how to get Windows Phone 8.1. Since you are a developer or want to start, its simple.

  • Sign up to be a Windows Phone developer at appstudio.windowsphone.com for free using the Microsoft account associated with your phone.
  • Download the “Preview for developers” app from your Windows Phone store. Store Link
  • Check for updates (Settings > Phone update > Check for updates) and download/install any that are available. You’ll have an update to download and install before Windows Phone 8.1 shows up if you’re downloading the Preview for Developers program for the first time.

Great now you have a preview of Windows phone 8.1. More info

 

Now lets get start looking at the coding possibilities

With the latest update to all windows platforms they have added universal apps. Remember windows phone 8.1 apps will not run on windows phone 8 your currently published apps will still stay in the store. Here is a nice resource to help you decide how to move forward: Info

So as a developer we need to decide to continue with our familiar Silverlight apps or migrate to universal and have access to both windows phone and windows and even Xbox ONE(If allowed).

In my next post I will start talking about universal apps and how we can make one app to reach them all 🙂

 

 

 

 

Dreamspark the start for a student

Sadly in a world were you want to develop in the big leagues when you are still at varsity, it’s hard to compete with limited funds. Happily Microsoft has levelled the playing field(Kinda).

Firstly the SDK and developer tools(Visual Studio Latest) are all right there to download.  Due to the fact the Visual Studio is by far the best ways to develop for Microsoft products it helps that we can use it freely and get the best for our APPS. 

Software catalogue: https://www.dreamspark.com/Student/Software-Catalog.aspx

There is many other helpful software there to so go check it out and enjoy.

 The other main benefit of Dreamspark is full publication for both Windows Phone store and Windows Store!!!! 🙂 

This is great as you don’t need to put anything down to show of what you got! , It gives you total peice of mind that all you need is an IDEA, and I love that!!!!

https://www.dreamspark.com/Student/App-Development.aspx

Please contact me in the comments if you would like to organize an account and start sharing your IDEAS with the world.