Help Me Help You

January 16, 2013

A little over a month ago I blogged about leaving RBA. In that post I also mentioned that I would have an additional post the following Monday giving all the details of where I decided to go to. I also promised that I would be much more active on the blog. Naturally I failed to live up to both of those expectations I set for you and myself. I could make excuses like being busy with my new job or the holidays, but in the end it doesn’t really matter. So, let’s start with a clean slate, shall we?

I left RBA to join…….wait for it…….drumroll…….Microsoft as a technical evangelist focusing on all things Windows 8!

My first month has been crazy busy. You often hear that joining Microsoft is drinking from a fire hose. I’m here today to tell you that’s not true. It’s actually like drinking from 5 fire hoses at once. Oh, and the spigots on each hose only increase the amount of water coming out – you can’t turn ‘em off. Luckily I was ready for it. Putting into practice tips and tricks from books like Getting Results and Getting Things Done have made all the difference in helping me get my feet under me.

“Wait, wait, wait a minute” I hear you saying. “Windows 8? Windows 8! Aren’t you the Windows Azure guy?” Yes, if you’ve followed me for any length of time you know I love all things Azure. However, if you’ve followed me for an even longer time you also know I have a passion for client side development (Windows Phone, and, yes, even Silverlight, may it rest in peace). I’m excited about coming full circle, getting back to my roots, and any other kind of stock quote you can think of, to be doing client development again. Of course, don’t blame me if I put my Azure twist on things.

Now you’re saying, “OK. Fine. What does all this have to do with me?” Simple, I’m here to help you write great apps and games for the Windows Store. Over the coming days you’ll see posts from inviting you to work 1 on 1 with me or my partner in crime Jeff Brand to get your apps out of your brain, onto the keyboard, and into the store. We’ll have a variety of options for you including:

  • Office hours at the Microsoft Store at the Mall of America in Bloomington, MN
  • Office hours at the Microsoft Technology Center in Edina, MN
  • Code camps in the Twin Cities, Nebraska, and Iowa
  • Scheduled online office hours

While you’re waiting for those posts to come out, I wanted to give you some incentive to start creating those apps. Actually, not just some incentive, a CRAZY I CAN’T BELIEVE THIS IS TRUE incentive. Here’s the deal:

genapp_ultimate_gaming experience

First, you’ll need to register at http://aka.ms/getyourappon. Go do it now, I’ll wait. Really. I don’t mind.

Good, now that that’s done, you’ll just need to publish your app to the Windows Store and/or the Windows Phone Store by February 28, 203 to qualify for these SWEET rewards:

  1. A store registration reimbursement† AND a copy of Halo 4 for Xbox 360!
  2. A chance to win one of 12 Xbox 360 consoles with Kinect. The more apps you enter, the more chances you’ll have to win.
  3. The Grand Prize: Three devs with the best apps will win an ultimate backstage pass to Microsoft Studios and spend the day with the Windows 8 Games Studios team—makers of Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and XBOX-enabled games!

Need some help getting your app done? Besides crashing some of my office hours, which I hope you do, you can also check out the Generation App 30 day programs for Windows 8 and Windows Phone. These programs are great resources as they’ll give you:

  • Insider tips and tricks on Windows 8 and Windows Phone application development.  You will receive step-by-step instructions on how to move forward with developing a polished app!
  • Personal on-the-phone access to a Windows 8 and Windows Phone expert*.
  • An exclusive one-on-one Windows UI style design consultation*.
  • An opportunity to test your app with qualified experts an App Lab.

I’ll personally vouch for the Generation App program as prior to joining Microsoft I participated in one of their contests to get a Windows 8 app in the Store prior to Windows 8 launching. For completing the challenge I got a Samsung Series 7 tablet that I gave to my wife who absolutely loves it.

Register. Learn. Code. Win!

† Current Windows Store and Windows Phone Store subscribers, members of DreamSpark, BizSpark, or MSDN are not eligible. Reimbursement will be awarded in the form of a Gift Card ($49 for Windows Store or $99 for Windows Phone Store). Limit one (1) reimbursement per Store per person. For full details, eligibility, and entry deadlines, see Official Rules.

* Offer good only to legal residents in the 50 United States & D.C. age 18 or older to hobbyists, professionals or developers in the field of software tech who sign up for building a Windows 8 application on www.generationapp.com. Offer limited to 250 design consultations per month and 500 technical review consultations per month, on a first come first served basis. Limit of one session of each offer type per person. This offer is non-transferable and cannot be combined with any other offer. This offer ends when supplies are exhausted, and is not redeemable for cash.