Monday, 23 May 2011

Highlights of #UKTechDays 2011 (1st day dev sessions)

UKTechDays 2011
Date: Monday, 23 May 2011
Location: Fulham, London

I attended 2 sessions under cloud topic and all the sessions except from the very first one (and a half!) under The Web topic.

For me, the important highlight of the event was to see presenters from outside Microsoft being invited. For Instance, Bruce Lawson Opera evangelist did a 60 minutes presentation on HTML5. Also a weird thing on Azure topic was the amount of marketing material which was stuffed into it; with three companies showcasing their Azure-Based products in length within the first session.

Highlights on the Azure Sessions:

ü  A-Z of the Windows Azure Platform by David Gristwood
·         Something to have some reading about:
·         SQL Azure: Extending SQL server for relational storage for the cloud.
o    Blob, Table and Queue types new for Windows Azure
·         Azure AppFabric : Infrastructure to connect to the cloud that
o    Connects existing app to the cloud
o    Connects through network boundaries
o    Easily control authorization to apps

Highlights on the Web sessions:

ü  HTML5 - Who, what, when, why? By  Bruce Lawson (@brucel)
·         Very cool features of HTML5
ü  Web development with HTML5 & Internet Explorer By Martin Beeby (@thebeebs)
·         Yes! The same guy who presented on MVC at LBi for the second EPiServer meetup!
·         Demo of using html5 video and audio, IE9 canvas and  JQuery
·         Also jquery.svg.js was recommended: a useful JS library that wraps the SVG and coding SVG is much easier using it.
·         Raphael for Graphs        
·         Also some cool tools recommended:
o    Modernizer: feature detection library for advanced browser features
o    Mire video converter: For converting video types to each other
ü  Enhancing sites with Pinning and Internet Explorer by Stephen Kennedy
·         On IE9 feature that enables your websites to be pinned on taskbar or start menu
·         Details of what classes, methods and properties to be used. (Too much details I would say)
·         For more code/demo on pinning enabled sites:
ü  An introduction to CSS3 for web developers by Rachel Andrew (@rachelandrew)
·         Some of the css 3 features
ü  Getting Tech.Days online by Martin Beeby
·         On how MS guys developed the techdays website using Umraco cms and hosted on Windows azure.
·         Surprisingly Umraco CMS been promoted and Highly recommended on a Microsoft event
ü  Getting Productive with ASP.NET MVC v3 (@Stevensanderson)
·         Vary useful and informative presentation by Steve Sanderson from Microsoft
·         With code demo of 6 items to get the most out of MVC 3
o    NuGet: Package Managing Console
o    MvcScaffolding: Command line version of scaffolding.  Scaffolding:  “quickly generating a basic outline of your software that you can then edit and customise”. Reade more :
o    Ninject.MVC3 : Dependency Injection tool
o    Razor: Updated view engine in MVC3
o    SQL compact
o    IISExpress
ü  Microsoft WebMatrix by Andy Robb
·         Open source platform by MS(!) using ASP.NET, MVC, PHP, Razor
·         Seems like a very quick platform for those who are new to development to get the site up and running quickly
·         Personally I think in practice it can only be used for demo apps or for setting up the platform on the development machine

Sunday, 22 May 2011

EPiServer Developer Resources Index

EPiServer File Manager & File Summary

A useful article about EPiServer File Manager and File Summary by @frederikvig. 


Accessing the data:

var file = System.Web.Hosting.HostingEnvironment.VirtualPathProvider.GetFile("/Global/Images/[Folder Name]/[Image-Name]") as UnifiedFile;

"The Summary property exposes a IUnifiedSummary type which gives us access to properties like Author, Comments, Category etc, and more importantly a Dictionary for accessing other properties we create (like Website)."


Simple example of accessing the Summary properties in code:

<div class="featured">
 <img src="<%= Image.VirtualPath %>" alt="<%= Image.Summary.Title %>" />
  <a href="<%= Image.Summary.Dictionary["Website"] %>"><%= Image.Summary.Author %>a>
  <em><%= Image.Summary.Dictionary["Description"]%>em>