Video

Why You Should Keep Your Facebook Profile Private

by Joey deVilla on August 20, 2010

A hilarious worst-case scenario involving Facebook and a job interview. Contains some weird adult situations, which is why it’s so funny:

Found via Gizmodo.

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.

{ 0 comments }

Learn Windows Phone 7 with the “Jump Start” Course

by Joey deVilla on August 18, 2010

Andy Wigley and Rob Miles: "Live from inside the TARDIS, it's the Windows Phone 7 Jump Start Course!"

(Well, it’s two English guys surrounded by tech gear and a psychedelic background. The interior of the TARDIS came to mind.)

The Windows Phone 7 Jump Start is the first of a number of free online courses on WP7 programming led by Microsoft MVPs, and you can jump in right now! Presented by Andy Wigley and Rob Miles, the Jump Start is made up of 12 50-minute videos for a total of ten hours’ worth of training, covering development of both Silverlight- and XNA-based apps as well as advanced topics such as the WP7 application lifecycle, launchers, choosers, isolated storage, taking advantage of the dialer, camera and contacts, and networking. There’s even a section on bringing your app over to the Marketplace. It’s all online, free and ready for you to dive in!

The videos in the course are:

  1. Introduction
  2. Building a Silverlight Application, Part 1
  3. Building a Silverlight Application, Part 2
  4. Building Games for the Windows Phone 7 Platform
  5. Building XNA Games for the Windows Phone 7 Platform, Part 1
  6. Building XNA Games for the Windows Phone 7 Platform, Part 2
  7. Advanced Application Development, Part 1
  8. Advanced Application Development, Part 2
  9. Advanced Application Development, Part 3
  10. Marketing Your Windows Phone 7 Application
  11. Working with Media
  12. Final Silverlight Topics and Wrap-Up

You can watch the videos on their pages (Silverlight required) or download them in WMA, WMV and MP4 formats for offline viewing.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

{ 0 comments }

Get Microsoft Silverlight

Can’t see the video? You can download and install Silverlight or download the video in iPod (MP4), MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

thisweekonchannel9 Here’s what’s up on the latest edition of This Week on Channel 9, the summary of the most interesting videos and news on Microsoft’s Channel 9 site:

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

{ 0 comments }

New Internet Explorer 9 Videos

by Joey deVilla on August 9, 2010

Download IE9 Platform Preview 4 now!

If you haven’t tried the latest Platform Preview of Internet Explorer 9, get your hands on it now! This one’s got new goodies like a new SVG engine, the “Chakra” JavaScript engine now integrated into the browser instead of a separate object called via COM, better Acid3 (95/100) and WebKit SunSpider scores.

Channel 9 has posted some videos on this newest version of IE9, and I thought I’d share them here:

A Look at the New IE Test Drive Samples

Get Microsoft Silverlight

This video (2 minutes, 43 seconds in length) shows off some of the new demo apps on the IE Test Drive page that show off the benefits of IE9’s hardware acceleration. Rob Mauceri, Group Program Manager for Internet Explorer, narrates.

Can’t see the video? Download Silverlight or grab the video in MP4, MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

A Look at SVG in IE9

Get Microsoft Silverlight

SVG is short for "Scalable Vector Graphics", whose specification is an open standard and supported by all major modern web browsers, including IE9. This video (4 minutes, 36 seconds in length) shows how you can take advantage of SVG and the fact that it’s hardware-accelerated in IE9. Patrick Dengler, Senior Program Manager for Internet Explorer, does the presentation.

Can’t see the video? Download Silverlight or grab the video in MP4, MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

IE9 Rocks HTML5 Audio Support

Get Microsoft Silverlight

IE Beatz is a drum machine app written JavaScript, SVG and HTML 5 audio to demonstrate the combined power of HTML 5 and IE9. This video (6 minutes, 4 seconds) features IE Beatz’ creator, Josh Rose of the IE9 team, explaining his creation and showing some of the underlying code.

Can’t see the video? Download Silverlight or grab the video in MP4, MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

{ 1 comment }

Get Microsoft Silverlight

Can’t see the video? You can download and install Silverlight or download the video in iPod, MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

This Week in Channel 9 logoAnother week, another This Week on Channel 9 (TWC9), Microsoft’s regular webcast showing the past week’s highlight on Channel 9, where Microsofties talk about what they’re working on or what they’re thinking, unfiltered by the marketing or PR departments. Regular co-host Dan Fernandez is joined this week by Larry Larsen as they talk about:

The co-hosts’ picks of the week are:

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

{ 0 comments }

Get Microsoft Silverlight

Can’t see the video? You can download and install Silverlight or download the video in MP4, MP3, WMA, WMV, WMV (High) or Zune formats.

this week on channel 9

Once again, it’s time for another installment of This Week on Channel 9 (or TWC9 for short), Microsoft’s regular video webcast featuring Dan Fernandez and Brian Keller, who provide entertaining and informative coverage of the news of the week for the .NET developer community.

In this episode, Dan and Brian cover:

The episode also features Dan’s and Brian’s picks of the week:

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

{ 0 comments }

Conflict Minerals and Blood Tech

by Joey deVilla on June 27, 2010

conflict minerals

Say the word “silicon” and chances are, you’ll think of technology. After all, silicon’s relationship to tech – it’s part of what makes transistors and chips – has been part of popular culture for decades, from the “Silicon chip inside her head” opening line from the Boomtown Rats’ song I Don’t Like Mondays to “Silicon Valley” as the nickname for the suburban expanse between San Francisco and San Jose.

Silicon is only part of the equation, however. The chips that drive our computers, mobile phones and assorted electronica are actually a “layer cake” consisting not only of silicon, but also oxide and metal.

There’s also the matter of key non-chip components like capacitors, which momentarily store an electrical charge. They’re made of thin layers of conductive metal separated by a thin layer of insulator. We use their “buffering” capabilities to smooth out “spiky” electrical currents, filter through signal interference, pick out a specific frequency from a spectrum of them and other “cleaning up” operations.

One of the metals used in the manufacture of capacitors is tantalum, which you can extract from a metal ore called coltan, whose name is short for “columbite-tantalite”. About 20% of the world’s supply of tantalum comes from Congo, and proceeds of from the sale of coltan are how their warlords – the scum driving the world’s most vicious conflict, and who’ve turned the country into the rape capital of the world – are bankrolled.

Nichloas Kristof of the New York Times wrote about metals like tantalum purchased from Congo – conflict metals – in an op-ed yesterday:

I’ve never reported on a war more barbaric than Congo’s, and it haunts me. In Congo, I’ve seen women who have been mutilated, children who have been forced to eat their parents’ flesh, girls who have been subjected to rapes that destroyed their insides. Warlords finance their predations in part through the sale of mineral ore containing tantalum, tungsten, tin and gold. For example, tantalum from Congo is used to make electrical capacitors that go into phones, computers and gaming devices.

Electronics manufacturers have tried to hush all this up. They want you to look at a gadget and think “sleek,” not “blood.”

Yet now there’s a grass-roots movement pressuring companies to keep these “conflict minerals” out of high-tech supply chains. Using Facebook and YouTube, activists are harassing companies like Apple, Intel and Research in Motion (which makes the BlackBerry) to get them to lean on their suppliers and ensure the use of, say, Australian tantalum rather than tantalum peddled by a Congolese militia.

He also points to the Enough Project’s latest video, which used humour and a reference to the “I’m a Mac / I’m a PC” TV commercials to draw the public’s attention to conflict metals and to encourage them to contact electronics manufacturers and ask them to be more vigilant when sourcing components:

The Enough Project says that auditing component supply chains at the smelters to see whether the metal was sources from “clean” places like Australia or Canada instead of lining the pockets of Congolese warlords would add about one cent to the price of a cellphone, and that this figure originates from within the industry. I’d happily pay a thousand times that for each of my devices – a mere ten bucks – to ensure that I wasn’t bankrolling rape and murder.

I’ll close this post with the closing paragraph from Kristof’s op-ed:

We may be able to undercut some of the world’s most brutal militias simply by making it clear to electronics manufacturers that we don’t want our beloved gadgets to enrich sadistic gunmen. No phone or tablet computer can be considered “cool” if it may be helping perpetuate one of the most brutal wars on the planet.

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.

{ 3 comments }