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BUILD & IGNITE Know It. Prove It. Tech Challenge Tour

I recently blogged about my personal experiences with the first “Know it. Prove it.” challenge that ran through the month of February 2015. The “Know it. Prove it.” challenge is back! This time it’s bigger and better than ever. The new challenge is a companion to both the Build and Ignite Conferences with 11 amazing […]

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Free Microsoft Training with the “Know it. Prove it.” Challenge

Microsoft Virtual Academy held the “Know it. Prove it.” 28-day challenge during the month of February 2015. The challenge was a month-long learning binge with 8 challenge tracks to choose from. Along with more than 55,000 people around the globe; I rocked the challenge during the month of February and leveled up my skills. As an […]

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7 Reasons You Should Be Fired Up For Windows 10!

We first heard last fall about Windows 10, Microsoft’s new operating system version. Today, we heard a whole lot more and personally, I’m thrilled! The new vision for Windows is an operating system designed to deliver a singular, cohesive experience across a myriad of device types. Traditionally, Windows has been built for the PC. So, […]

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Microsoft and Salesforce… in a Partnership?

From yesterday’s announcement: Salesforce will support Windows, Windows 8.1, build “interoperability Salesforce and Office 365,” Microsoft’s subscription-based productivity suite, and integrate OneDrive for Business, SharePoint Online, and Outlook in various capacities. Salesforce will use Microsoft’s Azure broadly. Who would have ever thought there would be a picture containing both a Microsoft CEO and Mark Benioff […]

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End of Windows XP Support What Now Windows 7 or 8

After a twelve-year run, the end of life for Windows XP is finally here. So what does this mean for those on XP still? Well in a nutshell support and updates will no longer be available, many machines will be unprotected, out of compliance and will open the door for vulnerabilities. The big question going […]

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MVC controller actions vs Web API vs SignalR – what to use?

Over the course of a last few years Microsoft unleashed two new web development frameworks: Web API and SignalR, both are suitable for asynchronous communications between web client and web server.  And, of course, we still have MVC controller actions that can be used for asynchronous communications too and can accept and return JSON objects. […]

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How Windows Azure delivers the Olympics

NBC and Microsoft recently publicized they are streaming every event of the 2014 Winter Olympics to any iOS, Android, Windows device using Windows Azure Media Services.  What is Windows Azure Media Services (WAMS) and how does it work? WAMS is a cloud optimized edition of the Microsoft Media Platform (MMP) which handles a variety of […]

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Create cross platform apps in C# with Xamarin

Xamarin and Microsoft have teamed up to make all other development platforms irrelevant.  Xamarin is the creator of popular cross platform development tools that allow developers to create iOS, Android and Windows applications all in C#.  With the launch of Visual Studio 2013, Xamarin and Microsoft announced a partnership that will significantly improve the experience […]

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Goodbye JavaScript, Hello TypeScript!!!!

There are many things developers hate about JavaScript.  You can see this with all of the different ways people are trying to “fix” JavaScript.  Here are a couple of the ways: CoffeeScript is a language which is syntactically similar to JavaScript and attempts to expose the “good parts” of JavaScript Google went ahead and wrote […]

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Windows Phone 8 and the battle for relevancy

Windows Phone 8 has been fighting for relevancy in the market since its release. It has slowly but surely gaining market share in the US and Europe has recently seen an explosion of WP8 adoption partially due to very low cost hardware.  Microsoft and Nokia have been continuously pricing their full featured phones lower than the competition […]

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Microsoft, Nokia and the “Devices and Services” Mantra

If I had a thousand dollars for every time I’ve heard the phrase “devices and services” from Redmond this year, I could retire early.  Tellingly, it occurs between four and eight times in the (only nine full paragraphs of the) official joint blog post announcing Microsoft’s move to acquire Nokia’s mobile phone business.  Count ‘em […]

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11 Things Microsoft is Actually Doing Right

Thanks to @lizasisler for point this out to me.  Frederic Paul at has a nice slideshow on 11 Things Microsoft is Doing Right.  Like Frederic, I prefer to focus on the positive and mention areas where there is room for improvement. Frankly, no major company lacks opportunity to improve in many different ways so […]

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Mobile upgrade time, what to do? Windows Phone, it might be time.

I’m taking a break from Lync blogging to address this…situation I’m in. So, as the title states, my contract is up and its time to run through the mobile debate once again.  If there is stress in my life right now, it isn’t the consulting work or raising 2 boys who are destined to destroy my […]

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Microsoft’s Power BI: just another hugely compelling feature

This article was pointed out to me by a colleague, and I found it a pretty compelling read:  How Microsoft helped this bar figure out that vodka was costing it a fortune. Of particular interest to me is the Natural Q&A feature, which is mentioned prominently. Now, my time in the data warehousing trenches tempers my […]

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Microsoft’s Power BI: a peek at the future?

So, have you heard about Power BI yet?  The whiz-bang new cloud-centric BI front end tool from Microsoft?  Well, this video from the 2013 WPC breaks down the story — in a very entertaining manner…  So, having watched, let’s assume we all remember Mariah’s chart-toppers and instead review the greatest hits of the Power BI […]

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Got Apps? SkyDrive Pro Now Available on iOS, WinPhone

Good news this morning for those using SharePoint 2013 and SkyDrive Pro for business collaboration and content storage / backup. Microsoft announced the news today (okay, technically yesterday) over on the Office 365 blog: We are pleased to announce that the SkyDrive Pro apps for Windows 8 and iOS are now available in the Windows […]

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Microsoft Windows Intune Wave E

Microsoft came out with Windows  Intune Wave D not to long ago, and now are alreay touting a new version, I am assuming it will be E or Version 5. From what I have been seeing, this iteration is part of a larger set of product updates that are coming through the end of the year. System Center R2, […]

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Lync Conference 2013 off to a great start!

Greetings from San Diego and my inaugural post from my new Surface Pro! Lync Conference got off to a great start on Monday evening with the welcome reception and mingling at the exhibit hall.  It was a great time for all of us Lync’ers to meet and greet, exchange information and see some great solutions focused around […]

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Windows Intune Direct Management The Next Step In MDM

With the latest release of Intune D, you now have the option to use Direct Management, or Active Sync for connecting mobile devices they both have benefits. Direct Management takes it a step further, and give you control over MDM and application management. Direct Managing takes you beyond policies and connecting your devices to exchange environments […]

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Windows Phone 8 Day 2 — The Development Environment

This is the second part in this blog series detailing my experience writing my first Windows Phone 8 (WP8) application. In Day 1, I decided what the application will be — a ToDo application — and set up my development environment. Now I need to get myself familiar with the world of WP8. I could start off […]

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