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I woke up this morning with a very interesting tweet waiting for me. I was asked what the best path for Microsoft certification would be for a Visual Basic programmer. I was forced to reply with "that was not a 140 character answer." This post aims to offer guidance to that process. Microsoft learning removed the VB paths to certification with the .NET 4 MCPD. The current batch of tests require a language test. You must pass either 70-480 to prove you are a HTML5 specialist or 70-483 to prove you ......

Processing Kinect v2 Color Streams in Parallel I've really been enjoying being a part of the Kinect for Windows Developer's Preview. The new hardware has some really impressive capabilities. However, with great power comes great system specs. Unfortunately, my little laptop that could is not 100% up to the task; I've had to get a little creative. The most disappointing thing I've run into is that I can't always cleanly display the color camera stream in managed code. I managed to strip the code down ......

When I was working on my C#/XAML game framework, I discovered I wanted to try to data bind my sprites to background objects. That way, I could update my objects and the draw functionality would take care of the work for me. After a little experimenting and web searching, it appeared this concept was an impossible dream. Of course, when has that ever stopped me? In my typical way, I started to massively dive down the rabbit hole. I created a sprite on a canvas, and I bound it to a background object. ......

You know those seemingly random Guids? Guess what? They're not random. I'll give your head a moment to recover from that bombshell. Ok, back with me? Good. I was digging DEEP in some hardcore specs when I stumbled upon this. I had a situation where I have a Guid as a unique identifier. This identifier had some subsequent child data that needed to refer to the global object but required different handling. Yes, I'm being slightly vague. I do have to respect company proprietary data. Due to this dilemma, ......

Last night, I was playing around with my port. I was having a bit of a problem getting the mouse click to behave as I expected. In a fit of inspiration, I solved that problem in such a way that it allowed me to dramatically improve the keyboard buffer. With the popularity of the keyboard buffer, I thought I'd share right away. As I stated in the original post about the keyboard buffer, WinRT doesn't route keyboard events unless there is a valid target. This forced me to have a control that required ......

This post should be considered part two of the series of posts called "Recreating XNA in Windows Store Apps." I'm basically creating a DrawableGameComponent. However, let's face it, I've discovered that titles like the about gets better traffic. When we last left, we had an object that would update itself on a background thread at a periodic rate that vaguely resembled the functionality of the game loop. Now, we need to draw the object. The good news is that WinRT will automatically update the object ......

It was unofficially announced yesterday that XNA has officially hit the end of its life. Fortunately, as mentioned in the last post, I'm working on porting everything out of XNA. However, there is stall a lot in XNA to love. As such, I have been making it a point to borrow some of the better features of XNA. Think of this post as the beginning of a series of posts called "Recreating XNA in Windows Store Apps." The first thing I needed to recreate was a GameComponent. For those of you not familiar ......

NOTE: I created a better version of this control. There are some important facts in this post that you should read first. However, check out Improved Keyboard Buffer for Windows Store Apps for a much improved version. As I mentioned in my previous post, I came across a situation where I needed to create a keyboard buffer for a Windows Store App. I will now explain why I needed to do this and how I did it. Windows Store Apps do some strange things with the keyboard. There is a completely logical explanation ......

I've been working on porting my sample game code to WinRT. One of the immediate things I found is that there is no direct access to the keyboard buffer. I mean, sure. WinRT is meant to work with devices that don't have keyboards, but that's no excuse. So being the bourbonred-blooded geek I am, I decided to implement my own. Most of this process is not for this post. My next post will show this whole process and include lots of sample code. However, there was one part that was so evil, I decided it ......

I've spent the past couple of days adding the Bing Maps WFP Control to an application I'm developing. I kept running into a strange thing that was driving me crazy. I have the control in the bottom of a StackPanel, under a Grid. No matter how hard I tried, setting the Height of the Bing control to Auto would cause the ActualHeight to always be 60.93. Now, I still don't know why this is happening. Truth be told, I'm not too sure I care. I did, however, find a reasonable hack around the problem. I ......

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