Archive

Archive for the ‘Windows Phone’ Category

WPC 2012: my personal summary (and slides)

I recently had the chance to participate to the latest WPC 2012 (local Windows Professional Conference) in Milano, Italy.

It was a terrific event: 27 Microsoft MVPs as speakers, an Ask The Expert Booth with +12 MVPs (+ a lot of friends and other Influencers) covering different technologies, together with the Microsoft Technical Support. Hundreds of technical sessions, giving full coverage of almost all the Microsoft Products and Technologies.

It was a great success in terms of Reach, Awareness and Support. Reach: almost 400 attendees, from ITPros to Developers to Consumers. More than 300 tweets around the Conference (#wpcit12).

In terms of awareness, the Microsoft MVP Award was highly valued during the conference: some minutes spent during the Keynote talking about it, the #Branding was everywhere, and MVPs often were wearing t-shirts with the MVP Logo on it. Recognition was another big part of it.

Just FYI, during the ATE the MVPs had around 250 technical discussions with the attendees. Divided per technology each day, attendees had the chance to interact not only with the speakers @ the Booth, but also with the other MVPs who voluntarily agreed to be part of the Conference supporting the attendees.

DSC_0238 DSC_0585

So now you know the MVP Award was a big part of it. But what about the rest of it?

Well, I also delivered a session on #SocialMedia called “Social Media in the IT World” and I have to say it was really interesting for the attendees. It was Different, not the kind of presentation you normally expect during a technical event. It was Relevant, according to the numbers of feedback and questions I gathered after my session. And for me it was fun too!

Understanding that many people still don’t understand the Power of the Social Media, the World of Mouth, the “Unmarketing” concept, Crowdsourcing, Personal #Branding and many others was kind of unexpected. So that is probably why my session was really valuable for the attendees.

I share my slides here, in a pure community spirit (as the MVPs taught me :)), hoping that someone else will benefit from that:

I did not have the chance to show how I use my Windows Phone to “unleash” the Power of the Communities, but I’m sure I’ll have time to do that in my next talk.

And, by the way, we also had the chance to have some fun (in a pure community spirit :)):

DSC_0495 DSC_0574

I need to thank a lot of people for a very successful event:

First and foremost, Barbara Palumbo, the “Puppet Master”, for his energy, proactive approach, driving the #wpcit12 team to Excellence. Claudio Salano, “The Boss” for having me @ the Conference. Nino Crudele, “Grinch” and #BizTalk Expert, for his tremendous valuable tips & tricks. And all others, all the MVPs, the Influencers, all the People I had the pleasure to meet for the first time, etc.

THANK YOU everyone for this wonderful experience !

Live Tiles on Windows Phone 7.8

I’m really excited about the recent announcement about Windows Phone 8, as you can imagine.

I’m also happy to see that our Windows Phone 7.5 will be upgraded to 7.8 version, with those beautiful Live Tiles I fell in love with :)

 

 

enjoy :)

Nokia Lumia 710: my personal impressions

I’ve always been fascinated by the mobility computing from a consumer perspective. My passion goes back to the 90’s when I owned 2 PockePCs (a Compaq and a Casio Cassiopeia with Windows CE 2.11), a Palm Pre 2, A Psion Revo (best smartphone keyboard ever), several Windows Mobile Phones and an Android device.

I have to be frank, when I first looked @ the first Windows Phone model, I was not that impressed. The metro style was kind of strange, considering where the other devices (iOS, Android, WebOS) where heading to. But when I started to use it, I realized the full potential. And I became addicted…

I got this beautiful present for Christmas (probably my family is VERY aware of my addiction :)), which was a Nokia Lumia 800. Superb phone, stunning display, lots of memory. But it doesn’t fit well.

What I mean is that I’m not a big fan of big phones (the Samsung Galaxy Note is like a giant phone to me, it’s not even a phone!). Technology is trying to “micro-do” everything since the Motorola 8700 and we’re going back to where we were before. Even though I see the value of them, I just don’t like to idea to carry a huge phone in my pocket. So my choice went to the Nokia Lumia 710.

I got the device yesterday and the price is at least a half of the normal Smartphone prizes, no matter which OS you like. Which is a good start…

When you lift the device for the first time, it’s seems like you’re handling an empty case, it’s just super lightweight. The form factor, something some people underestimate, it’s great. It perfectly fits in your hand. The USB connector is not in an awkward position like the Lumia 800. And it has buttons, instead of touch ones, which is great for a guy like me who was used to like the old IBM keyboards doing a lot of noise when you were typing.

Of course it lacks something: memory is only 8GB, the display is not even comparable with the Lumia 800 (TFT VS AMOLED, but the Gorilla Glass is good to have), the battery is only that powerful (although it’s removable, which is a good thing) and the camera is 5MP compared to the 810’s 8MP (which is ok for me. I don’t pretend to take stunning pictures from a phone).

You can have a look at this comparison I found (but there are plenty more out there):

 

If you’re still undecided, take a look at Tom’s Hardware Nokia Lumia 710 review.

I finally found the device I was looking for and I have no plans in changing it for anything. It reminds me, in a way, the HTC Mozart, one of the first Windows Phone I had, which was a great phone.

So overall I’m very satisfied with this purchase (at least this one I won’t regret it:)) and, if you want to see some pictures or have more info about my experience, just let me know in the comments box and I’ll definitely share them here.

And lastly, YOU, what Windows Phone do you have or you’re planning to buy? :)

Microsoft MVP Award – January 2012 !

It has been an incredible year, full of events and activities embracing new technology directions which will impact us in the future. Well, it has an impact on a lot of us already, if you think about Windows Phone and the social media integration as a well as the XBOX gaming gaming experience. Some people like it, some people don’t but you have to admit it’s a step further compared to a “normal” Smartphone experience.

Ok, ok, next blog post I’m gonna talk about that, not on this one :). Aren’t you a little curious to see who got the MVP Award this cycle? It’s always a pleasure for me to Welcome new people as exceptional community Leaders, online and/or offline. I’m not saying they were not Leaders and strong community-oriented guys before the Award, I’m just saying I’m truly honored when I award people like that and I’m more when I have the chance to meet them.

mvp_horizontal_fullcolor

So here is the list, freshen up & ready for the 2012 Year (sorted by name):

MVP Technical Expertise Country
Adis Jugo SharePoint Server Bosnia-Herzegovina
Boris Ulik Enterprise Security Slovakia
Drahoslav Dvorak Project Czech Republic
Gabriel Enea ASP.NET/IIS Romania
Hrvoje Hudoletnjak ASP.NET/IIS Croatia
Maciej Grabek Windows Phone Development Poland
Mihai Nadas Windows Azure Romania
Nenad Trajkovski Project Croatia
Sebastian Wilczewski Project Poland
Slaven Sola SQL Server Croatia

(this is related to the Region I represent, which is CEE & Italy, excluding Russia and CIS Countries).

A BIG CONGRATS to you guys MVPs and of course to the ones that have been re-Awarded. And being re-Awarded is tough as well so don’t you think MVPs take it for granted. The MVP Award lasts 12 months and everybody are treated as normal candidates so I totally understand the excitement (and sometimes the pain :)) to wait for an email saying that you’ve been Awarded again.

That said, I sincerely want to wish you a very Happy New Year and, if took some time off, Happy Holidays ! I’ll be on holiday for a while but I’ll still be around (you’ll definitely find me on Twitter :)).

BTW, If you don’t know nothing about the MVP Award Program, please take some time to subscribe to our blog as you’ll find some interesting stories to read…

Also, did you notice my blog URL has changed? The RSS Feed has been automatically updated but I wanted to let you know anyway (some personal promotion doesn’t hurt :))

Enjoy your Award and Congratulations Again !

@alead

A glimpse of the future !

I had some great holidays during this summer, up in the mountains.

And I deliberately chose not to bring my laptop with me so not to be tempted to work. Anyway I used my Windows Phone to check my emails: not on a regular basis but at least to check the most important stuff that was going on. I wanted to take out job stuff from my vacations but I couldn’t resist. Every year I bring my laptop with me mostly for the candidates’ reviews (to see if everything was working the way I was expecting to).

So that was my first lesson: never leave my laptop @ home.

Because after I came back, I switched it on only to realize that the hard disk was broken. Oh my, I was so disappointed, especially because I was not so sure that I backed everything up.

With all the cloud services we now have at our disposal, none of them had all the stuff (at least the recent one) I was supposed to reinstall on my laptop. Fortunately, I made a backup on May, 2011 on my external hard disk so not everything was lost. Also, SkyDrive and Windows Live Mesh did help me in recovering some of the most important files I had.

Having said that, it was not over…

I ordered a new hard disk from HP (thanks to the local IT for the big help!) but it took about a week to have it. In the meantime, my smartcard was not working. Bummer !

As you may know, in order to have Direct Access on Windows 7 working, you have to use BitLocker and then use your smartcard to enable the corpnet access.

So I was lost…

Not to mention I got flu that took me @ home for almost a week.

So I went to the local IT and ordered a new one but it takes some time.

Long story short: I have my laptop (which is great), I recovered most of the files (even better) but I still need my smartcard. Well, close enough, I’m @ 80% I’d say…

Back to us,

during the hiking time back to the mountains I had some time to think about all the activities and top stories and the great collaborations with all the Countries I have the pleasure to represent as the Community Program Manager for the MVP Award Program. I guess everyone does that: when you have time and you’re relaxed, it’s much easier to build your last year’s history. Even better, you have a lot of creativity and lots of ideas that you want to put into action.

So, apart from being stuck right after my holidays, I’m SO READY to start the new (fiscal) year!

And you know what? There are a lot of things happening and planned to happen in the next 90 days. Lots of events, lots of engagements and of course the Microsoft and the 3rd party forums are still running and they get healthier.

You know I’m addicted to the social media and, to me, it’s the best way to monitor what is going on in the communities. As I represent 20 Countries, it’s not that easy to track everything you want to but at least you got what I need.

Also, I found a new way to use my Windows Phone more effectively: basically I created groups in which there are people (aka Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn accounts) that I want to monitor. In that way, and when you don’t have much time to use a PC client, I was able to get the most important things, at least important for me and the Communities.

So from an offline perspective, here is what is going to happen in the next 90 days (again, this is not a comprehensive list):

Mobility Day – Zagreb, Croatia (September 21st)

mobilityday

SQL TUNEIN – Zagreb, Croatia (September 26, 27)

SQLTuneIN

Bleeding Edge 2011 – Gozd Martuljek, Slovenia (September 29th, 30th)

Bleeding Edge

DevReach – Sofia, Bulgaria (October17-18)

DevReach

Microsoft TechDay 2011 Baltic Region (October 18th till 20th)

Estonian page contains links to TechDay Lithuania & TechDay Latvia as well

TechDay Baltics

Microsoft Technology Summit – Warsaw, Poland (October 18-19)

MTS

Sinergija – Belgrade, Serbia (October 18-20th)

Sinergija11

Microsoft Vizija – Skopje Macedonia F.Y.R.O. (October 20-21)

Vizija

Virtualization Conference 2011 – Milan, Italy (November, 16-17)

Virtualization Conference

Windows Professional Conference – Milan, Italy (November 22-24)

WPC

Microsoft Fest 2011 – Prague, Czech Republic (November 26-27)

MSFest2011

ITPro-Dev Connections 2011 – Athens, Greece (November 26-27)

ItproDevcon2011

As you can see many events (or I should say at least some of the most important ones) are happening in the Region, with a strong Microsoft MVP participation, whether the MVPs will be speakers or Ask The Expert. These are events that are community-driven and/or Microsoft-driven with the help of the Communities and I guess it’s a great opportunity for all the community members to stop by to some of these events and have a chance to talk with them about Microsoft technology.

And bear with me if I missed some events: feel free to comment on this post and let me know (I’m still digging around to see what’s going to happen and also starting to have conference calls and Live Meetings with my colleagues in the Region but of course it takes time so any help would be much appreciated!)

Of course I didn’t forget about the MVP candidates’ review, which is, as a matter of fact, the first thing I want & need to make sure it’s okay. So expect a blog post, as always, the 1st of October, late in the day, to see new names/new faces and great community contributors being awarded as part of this exciting community which is the MVP Award Program.

 

So, putting aside all the issues I had after my holidays’ return, I’m VERY VERY excited to start a new year with a lot of activities being so confident that the communities and the Microsoft MVPs will have a big part on the new wave of Microsoft Products and a strong impact on the future of Microsoft Technologies moving forward.

And you know what? I want to be part of it too !! :)

How I managed my Windows Live IDs (error code 8015341B)

Recently I decided to change my primary Windows Live ID.

It worked but it was kind of tricky and let me explain this to you.

There reason behind this was that I had 2 Windows Live IDs: one for XBOX Live and Zune and one for the emails/calendar etc.

All worked perfectly but, as I wanted to have just one ID for all services (and this include my Windows Phone) I decided it was the time to do that.

There’s nothing wrong to have 2 Windows Live IDs, especially for Windows Phone but I like things to be simple and agile :)

The first thing I needed to change, which was quite important, were the services linked to that “old primary” Hotmail account. My primary email needed to change and so for the Internet service provider primary email, bank account, automatic payments for electricity, etc.

Then I decided: ok, let’s go to my XBOX live and change the Live ID. On the XBOX 360, you can actually “move” your Avatar (your account) from one Hotmail account to another. Only one time every 30 days.

But this didn’t work.

So I discovered what was wrong: my secondary Hotmail account that I wanted to use was linked to another XBOX Live account. After some phone calls with the XBOX Support, they suggested me to unlink that Hotmail account with “my secondary” XBOX Avatar.

But you can’t do it.

On the XBOX Live I tried to link my XBOX Live account to my other Hotmail account but I received the error “8015341B”. I searched through the Internet and found some articles: one in particular seemed to be describing my problem…(the article also shows, if you’re interested, how to change the Windows Live ID that is associated with your Xbox LIVE Gamertag).

Then I realized what was also wrong with that Live ID:

the one that I wanted to use was US Region.

In this case, there’s nothing you can do: Regions are not compatible with each other (at least at the moment).

So they suggested me to create a new email account (say, a Yahoo account) and, through the XBOX and associate my Avatar to that “temporary” email account.

As you may know, you can’t delete an XBOX Live Account so that was the perfect “workaround” to my problem. So I associated that Yahoo account to my XBOX Gamertag first.

Then I created a new Hotmail account (say name.lastname@hotmail.com). This Hotmail account was brand new, European Region, and not linked to any XBOX Live.

I used the XBOX to associate my Gamertag to this new email account and voilà, the merge was completed !

 

I know, it’s not easy to understand as there are 3 Hotmail accounts and 1 Yahoo account in this description so I apologize if this is not that clear but in the end I solved my issue.

I had to “spam” my Messenger friends and tell them (with an automatic email) that I changed my Messenger account so I have to apologize to them for that too :)

But in the end what I achieved was: I have one Hotmail account associated with one XBOX Live/Zune Pass/Inbox/Calendar/Messenger and got rid of all the other email accounts.

And, to summarize, the reasons why it was not that easy were basically 2:

  • my Hotmail accounts were created in different Regions
  • both of them were linked to 2 XBOX Live Gamertags

You can still merge 2 Windows Live IDs (by going to http://profile.live.com but this is for easy switching from one to another).

And that was it :)

Windows Phone Next

Oh, this is simply GREAT !!

Link to: This is Windows Phone Next – Engadget

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,517 other followers