Unity and Windows: Road to Success

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Unity developers listen up! Microsoft has created a great oppurtunity for success on the Windows Platform. Using a great tool like Unity, and a great platform like Windows, success is an easy few steps away.

Head on over to Unity3D.com to view the progam and the step to qualify and start feeling the success!

Nokia Windows Phone Developer Day

What: Windows Phone Developer Day

When: Feb 1st, 12pm to 6pm

Where: Microsoft Offices, 1 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142

Mark your calendars for Saturday, Feb 1, 2014 and free up 12-6 PM to be in Cambridge, MA. The Microsoft and Nokia Evangelist are teaming up to help you publish your Windows Phone Apps!

Here is the preliminary schedule (subject to tweaking):

  • 12 PM DevCenter Submission Walkthrough (30 minutes): See just how easy it is to submit and publish an app worldwide
  • 12:30 PM Build an app in 30 minutes with App Studio (30 minutes): See how to build an app from an idea to publishable in 30 minutes, literally.
  • 1 PM – 1:30 PM Lunch: I’ll be providing food and snacks. This is when you think about what you need help with or when you should think of your app idea for App Studio.
  • 1:30-6 PM Hands-on time: The experts will be available to help during this time. They will be walking around helping and/or attending to requests for help.

By the end of the day I fully expect everyone’s apps will be ready and submitted to DevCenter and on it’s way to the global app marketplace.

Sign up here

What will you need to bring?

  • If you need help on an existing app, bring your laptop dev environment with your app on it.
  • If you want to build an app without any code, bring a laptop that has a modern browser (IE10-11, Chrome). You’ll only need your browser to build and submit the app to the store. If you do not have a Windows Phone, the experts will be able to help you test the app on their phone


Everyone who attends and publishes their app will be entered to win a “hero” Nokia Lumia (1020, 928, 925, 920, etc) of their choice. I’ll be saving some swag/prize surprises for the day of the event. Also, Microsoft will be bringing some prizes of their own! I will update this post with more details as we get closer to Feb 1st.

Note: If you accept a prize from Nokia, you agree to these terms.

Developer Environment

To write native Windows Phone 8 apps, you will need to be using Windows 8 Pro. If you do not have windows 8 Pro, you can utilize the Windows Phone App Studio app.

General Windows Phone 8 developer environment minimum

1.  Mac users only: Boot CampParallels DesktopVirtualBox or VMWare Fusion

2.  Windows 8 (or 8.1) Professional (a 90-day evaluation version available here)

3.  The Windows Phone SDK is available here.

Directions to #1 CAMBRIDGE CENTER  Directions from Bing

(Note: there is some construction being performed on the Longfellow bridge and it is currently closed to Cambridge-bound traffic )



MBTA (“The T”)

Cambridge Center is accessible via the MBTA Red Line at the Kendall Square/MIT stop (between the Charles Street and Central Square stops). The Red Line links up with other lines providing access to virtually the entire Greater Boston region, including Logan Airport.  Please follow the Microsoft signs to our main entrance in the front of our building.

Sign up here


Nokia 1020 Windows Phone

I have been an iPhone user for some time now. I had a 3GS and a 4S. I liked both of the phones. Good quality. Great app selection. Ease of use. Albiet some quirks but overall a great phone. However, when I start my new job in a few days it makes more sense that I have a Windows Phone. So I did a bit of research on what Windows Phone to get and the answer just kept coming back to the Nokia 1020. Recently launched. Great camera. Windows Phone 8. Why not? So I took the plunge.

My purchase journey is like the “normal” purchase path.

  1. Problem recognition – “I need to get a Windows Phone”
  2. Search – “The Verge, forums, Nokia website etc. all provided me info”
  3. Evaluation – “Do I want to save money and get last years phone or take the plunge and get the latest and greatest”
  4. Purchase decision – “Walk in the store. ATT.com or Microsoft Store online and get a free case”
  5. Post-Purchase – “Sweet! I got the phone…uh..did I make the right call?”

My Post-Purchase impressions where “wow, this is big”. I am coming from an iPhone 4S which is a great size. Fits in your hand, feels sturdy. This Nokia 1020 is much bigger. The weight of it is a little more but not too bad to notice. My second impression was the back of the phone. Being touted as teh next best camera since cameras were invented, you can tell right away that the camera is the focus of this phone. It protrudes from the back and will not allow the phone to lay flat.

Now, what runs through my mind is this is a major change or maybe buyers remorse. Not only from an operating system but from a physical and emotional stand point. My New England Patriots case won’t fit. My car charger. How will this hook up to my home stereo to play music? Will it fit in my pocket? My wife will kill me when she gets the credit card bill. Then my mind quickly goes to the features of the phone. What about my apps? How can I get the same ones on Windows Phone? My pictures? My contacts?

Well, that went away after about 3 minutes of using the Nokia 1020. The Windows Phone operating system is slick. Great transitions. Home screen that makes sense. Organize app icons super easy. So far so good.

My big question now is my contacts. Ugh. How will they come over. Well, I found this app called “Transfer My Data” (could not have a better name) and it just did that. Transfered my data. Wow. I had more issues transfering contacts from my iPhone 3GS to my iPhone 4S and that was using the same operating system!

My photos I just backed up so that was not a big deal, however there is an app that will send those over as well.

Now, apps. I read the internet and see “Windows Phone does not have any apps, that’s why no one uses it”. I was skeptical at first but I can honestly say you cannot believe everything you read on the internet.

Facebook, Foursquare, FoodSpotting, ESPN, Twitter, Spotify, Pandora, Untappd, Zite, Weather Channel, Netflix and Kindle. Check! They are all there. The one I am missing is Instagram but sounds like it is on its way. The biggest pain in installing these apps is remembering your usernames and passwords, but after that hurdle the fun began. Setting up the home screen icons!

I can honestly say after a day of using this phone I’m sold. This phone does not only have a great camera (which I never even talked about yet) but the Windows Phone operating system works well. App selection is not bad. I would even say pretty close to the AppStore. (How many tip calculators do you really need anyway?)

I have not used the camera enough to really comment on it, but the little I did use, it is awesome.

Overall the phone is great and if anyone is thinking of taking the plunge and switch from an iPhone or Android to Windows Phone, it is easier than you think.

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