Windows RT takes steps toward awesome

As I mentioned in a previous post, Windows RT is essentially Windows on ARM, and arguably that is how it should have been promoted.

Just imagine – a third platform option when downloading applications – x86, x64 and now ARM. Due to Microsoft’s arbitrary (and greed motivated) restrictions, this wasn’t supposed to happen.

Thank goodness for hacker ingenuity: not only did somebody figure out how to disable the signature requirement, somebody else created a script to simplify the unlock, and according to this article: You can jailbreak Windows RT to run desktop apps…or even Mac OS, Putty and 7-Zip have already been ported to ARM.

[Release] RT Jailbreak Tool – xda-developers

The next step is portability. If this article is to be be believed, somebody managed to get Windows RT running an an HTC HD2. If it is possible to port Windows RT to just about any ARM device… what else could it run on? Just imagine a tablet landscape where you could pick your own OS, or dual boot Windows and Android.

Imagine all the Linux nerd heads exploding if Windows RT were running on a Raspberry Pi.

Or even better – if somebody ports Windows RT to run on the iPad. THAT would be epic.

Windows RT based devices remain marginally useful and tremendously overpriced (the iPad is a good $200 cheaper… not cool). Should freedom and ingenuity prevail over Microsoft’s greed, Windows RT really could take the ARM world by storm. I’ve got my fingers crossed…

Windows 8 Store Application Development: AppBar WTF

I have a great idea for an app that I intend to submit to the Windows 8 store. I am a fairly proficient .NET developer, and I already have a nice little class library all ready to go, I just need a “Modern” UI. This shouldn’t be too hard, right?

I create my project, and start adding controls. I realize I will need that settings thing that pops up when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen. But it isn’t called “settings” – that is something different. Instead it is called the “AppBar”. Now given that I am using a tool called VISUAL Studio, the primary innovation being the ability to rapidly, visually design user interfaces, then write code for interaction. So I figure adding an AppBar should be as simple as adding a menubar was in windows forms, right?

Wrong. Dead Wrong.

An AppBar is like an iFrame. You can put whatever you want in it, and it is completely NON-obvious, and non-intuitive to do so in a meaningful fashion. The Microsoft Quick Start guide only tells you how to do it with some XAML code that they neglect to tell you where to place. Want to follow along? Here is the article: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/apps/xaml/hh781232

 

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