Visual Studio 2012 and Windows applications go hand in hand.Your existing investment remains sound with enhanced tools to let mixed teams work together.Building rich WPF applications is easier than ever with enhanced WPF editor.And of course Visual Studio 2012 is ready for the future.You have quick access to all the new features in the .NET Framework 4.5, enhanced C++ support and of course the ability to create great Windows Store Apps with XAML or HTML.
Depending upon your existing experience and skills, Windows 8 provides you will a continued path for delivering great applications for your users and business.As you can see, Windows Forms, WPF Desktop applications, Silverlight, and traditional browser-based applications are still fully supported.However, if you’re ready to deliver more innovative and immersive experiences, you can start building Windows Store Applications for Windows 8.Regardless of your background, there’s a set of templates and libraries to get you there quicker.Visual Studio 2012 provides you with tools to build all of these applications.
Visual Studio 2012 continues to be your home base to build rich, Windows Applications.With new features like Solution round-tripping, you can safely work on your existing code, while staying compatible with earlier versions and other developers, yet still move forward when you’re ready.The new WPF editor brings some great new features, formally only found in Blend, to Visual Studio which you can use with existing and new WPF applications.
Desktop WPF showing new Async Features
For those of you with existing web skills, you’ll find building Windows Store Apps to be a familiar experience.Visual Studio 2012 provides great templates to get started, and you’ll find you have full access to the power of the Windows Runtime.
Make your apps ‘look and feel’ great:Match the Windows Store Apps styleControl for common user experiencesDesign for touch as well as traditional inputScale across form factorsModern patterns for reliable apps: Use interactive design tools
WinJS demo (possibly showing blend)
Since .NET 4.0 and Silverlight 4 were introduced, it has been possible to target both Silverlight and the regular .NET Framework with the same assembly. But if you’ve tried it, you’ll find that Visual Studio 2010 doesn’t exactly make the job easy for you. In particular, you had to make sure you were writing to a portable subset of the language and library features.Visual Studio 2012 makes this easy for you. In addition to Silverlight and .NET Framework 4.0, you can now create a ‘Portable Library’ across .NET for Windows Store apps, Windows Phone and Xbox 360, multi-targeting your common core codebase, and preventing you from using features that aren’t available across all your chosen platforms
VB Windows Store App with Portable Library Code
Before you start with a Windows Store App, you need to understand the Windows Store app user experience guidelines. http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/apps/hh779072.aspxThe standard Windows Store App project templates help encapsulate those principles.Existing WPF developers may be used to a window-and-dialog-based approach, but Windows Store apps encourage a page navigation model, and all applications are essentially “full-screen”.You should also expect your application to be activated and deactivated, and managing the states in-between activations is very important.Finally, you need to think very carefully about the screen resolution and orientation. The Windows Store apps guidelines have prescriptions for things like margins and font sizes that can change with resolution and orientation. And don’t forget that on a tablet device this is likely to change while your app is running!Fortunately, the default project templates help us out with this.
In this demo we’re going to look at the basic app framework of a C# Windows Store App.We’ll be calling out the streamlined references to the framework, and the Page-based infrastructure.We’ll look at the common infrastructure provided in the default templates.We’ll look at some (more-or-less) familiar types, including the page, layout panels, etc.We’ll demonstrate how to run the app on the local machine, or in the simulator, and the benefits of both.
Contracts are a powerful mechanism in Windows 8 which allow applications to interoperate with each other, and with system services, regardless of the language and technology used to build them.Using contracts, you can access system resources like the webcam, audio, and video devices. You can also integrate with services like Search, and share information with other applications.You have to opt-in to contracts, and declare that you are using them. This ties in with another new feature of Windows 8 – Capabilities.
The user needs to trust the applications that they download and install.Part of this is understanding exactly what the app is going to be able to do to (or with!) their system, and on their behalf.To help with this, each application contains a manifest file that declares the capabilities the application requires.Visual Studio 2012 makes it easy to keep these up-to-date with a handy visual editor.
In the past, if you’ve written apps for Windows Phone 7, PixelSense, or you’ve been (unusually!) conscious of power management with your desktop apps, you may be familiar with the idea that your application doesn’t just start up, run, and quit, but may be deactivated, and reactivated later.With WinRT, this activation model is the norm for every application. We may be deactivated because the user has switched to another application. We may be activated through a contract – interaction with Windows 8 Search, for example.Let’s look at a demo of this.
In this demo we’re going to look at adding search integration to our application.We’ll look at the standard search charm.See how to enable the search integration capability.Implement the search Contract.And Activate for search.
Visual Studio 2012 continues to be the development environment you need to build great Windows applications.Whether you’re supporting existing applications or building new, great apps for the Windows Store, Visual Studio has the tools you need to build them now, today!