Friday, 31 August 2007

Imagine Cup Registration starts tomorrow!

Well as already mentioned in a previous post its that time again for the Microsoft Imagine Cup and tomorrow (1st September) is when the registration starts. I will be signing up for the Algorithm section for sure; I think its an awesome section though depending on who I can combine with then I may also enter the Software Design Section... so guess I will have to wait and see and I can't wait for it to start!

Saturday, 25 August 2007

Imagine Cup France 08

Well its that time of year again where students around the world fight it out to make the best software solutions in the chance to win the Imagine Cup; a competition set up by Microsoft to find the best young minds. The competition is split up into various sections in which people can compete.
Now of course I will be entering, I missed out last year but not this time! Though I am still undecided as to whether to enter the algorithm section or the Software design section. However it will be a great experience no matter what.
To find out more or to register for the imagine cup visit the homepage:

Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Mix Update

Well I have recieved the email saying my ticket has been booked, not long now till the awesomeness of Mix 07. Hopefully I will be able to get lots of freebies... hopefully

Also not long till the MSP Summer Camp which should be great also. Chance to meet and greet the other MSP's.

Friday, 17 August 2007

Windows Live SkyDrive... Beta

Now I thought people were talking about Google when I first heard about this, a 500mb online storage system allowing you to store all your files to an online server and access them anywhere... sounds like a very Google viewpoint. But I was wrong, it was Microsoft! Its such a great idea, however I hope its the start of the eventual transistion to everything being stored online, accessible anywhere. Well guess I will have to wait for that to happen but for the moment, 500mb free online storage is amazing!

You sign into your Windows Live SkyDrive account via your Windows Live interface using your Windows Live login. Its easy to access and is very usefully if your constantly having to move files with you but don't want a usb stick.

Check it out at:

Thursday, 16 August 2007

MIX UK 07!

Well I've just been invited to MIX UK 07 by good old Microsoft, bless them, they even paid for my ticket. Well it seems like it will be another cool event and looking at the schedule theres a lot to look forward to!

For those that don't know Mix is a yearly event which Microsoft shows off its latest cool stuff and lets developers try it out.

Well below are some of the schedule highlights... kindly lifted from my fellow MSP's page who's travelling with me to the event...

  • Building Silverlight Applications
  • Design for Silverlight
  • Windows Live Services
  • Visual Studio 2008
  • ASP.NET 3.5
  • 3D solutions on the web

While at the event also I will be taking lots of pictures and also doing some interviews for Channel 8, so its not all fun and games... honest.

And then about a week after that I am again in London for the MSP boot camp. Crikey Microsoft, calm down.

Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Windows Mobile 6 ...Shiny!

Well after the 'fun' I experienced in the previous blog post, I finally got my upgrade, and so I thought I would just talk about some of the cool new features and functions of WM6 and then about my feelings and experience with the OS.

Well lets start off with some of the cool new and updated features, there are a lot of them but I will just mention those I feel are most important and affect me the most:

  • Remote Desktop Client - Although not included in the version I recieved (had to download it) Its such an awesome tool, made someone actually believe I was running Vista on my phone!
  • Improved Live Messenger - So so so much better version of the IM program, finally I can hide offline contacts! No more hours of scrolling and its such a nicer interface.
  • AJAX and JavaScript support for Pocket Internet Explorer, meaning more sites actually work properly, though shame most sites still don't render properly.
  • .Net CF & Compact SQL Server included in the ROM... hopefully faster speeds and less space. Means all .Net CF V2 programs I make will run flawlessly on WM6 devices.

Other updates that don't really affect me or I haven't used yet but still will greatly help some people or will be useful in the future:

  • Live Update system for the Operating System... A great idea but will it ever get used, or even for anything but Security Updates. Windows Extra type programs would be awesome!
  • Customer Feedback - Will help in time but customers won't see any initial change.
  • Bluetooth Stack greatly improved - Now I don't really use Bluetooth but I guess will be great for some!
So what has it been like to use WM6? Well I think its a great improvement over Windows Mobile 5 mainly in the performance area, due to lots of enhancements behind the scenes and a change in the memory management WM6 seems a lot more responsive and also seems to have more RAM available most of the time. This is great seeing as by default you don't exit applications.

Most programs have had a makeover to make them look better, the Instant Messenger (Windows Live Messenger) is great though the wrapper program Windows Live seems to me pointless? Though I was very annoyed when the IM program decided to dump my entire IM contacts list into my phones contacts manager... 200+ random email addresses to sort through... fun!

But there are some problems but I guess thats due to O2 or the manafacture HTC, such as Remote Desktop wasn't shipped with the ROM and also a strange bug with the Wireless. Such as when I am connected to a network and click the wireless icon at the top of the screen, it asks me if I want to turn on the wireless... strange?

In conclusion its such a great improvement and I would suggest to anyone to get a smartphone or PDA with it on, and now I'm just waiting for the next version (Photon) to be released!

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

O2 WM6... Here today, gone tomorrow!

Well I am a proud owner of an 02 XDA-Orbit, and its a great bit of kit but I have been waiting for O2 to release Windows Mobile 6 for it, they did it a while back in Germany but nothing over here...

When I contacted O2 they said they were in the process of testing, however recently I found that very strange seeing as they were shipping the XDA-Orbits now with Windows Mobile 6... something very strange if its still in testing!

However yesterday I thought the light at the end of the tunnel had came, I checked the O2-XDA site to find that they had indeed now allowing downloads of the Update to WM6. So I quickly filled in the details and was redirected to a HTC page... a page that was a 'server busy' error...

So I waited, overnight indeed to try again today, however I found that O2 had removed the link on the site and it seems that as usual O2's terrible customer relations strike again. They had updated the webpage however didn't actually have the update that everyone is so desprately wanting to download.

I am now getting used to O2's terrible customer service, they sold me the phone without the free GPS software, they have incorrectly charged me multiple times, their in store staff have been wrong the 3 times I have visited them and when I emailed this morning they wouldn't answer because my father owns the phone not I... even though what I was asking for; the information about the update would in no way endanger the data protection act. So I feel I may in the end have to change provider because O2 is quite opposite to what it believes and I feel it is completely terrible at communicating!