The Midweek Download: Oct. 3rd Edition – More Tips for Windows Phone 8 App Developers & Microsoft Announces TypeScript

In this edition of The Midweek Download, we’ve got stories on pricing strategies for Windows Phone 8 app developers, a new programming language that gets JavaScript development to scale and more.

How I price my Windows Phone apps. One key question some Windows Phone developers struggle with when putting an app on sale is: how much should I charge? This post from Bernardo Zamora will help you get started. The Windows Phone Dev Center gives developers more control over pricing because Dev Center now lets developers set a unique price for every country or region where paid apps can be sold. This capability, not found in all major app stores, provides an exciting new way to fine-tune your sales strategy. And now that you can price by country and region, you might want to pay closer attention to user reviews from around the world – easily accomplished, thanks to the new translation feature you’ll find at the Dev Center.

TypeScript: JavaScript development at application scale. In addition to supporting industry-standard programming languages, such as C++, Python, and JavaScript, Microsoft has always been at the forefront of creating great programming languages – Visual Basic, C#, and F# being the most recent examples. We create programming languages to solve problems and to enable a broad set of people to build software. On Monday, we introduced a new programming language that solves a very specific problem – getting JavaScript development to scale. That language is TypeScript. Head over to S. Somasegar’s blog to learn more about the TypeScript project, get links to the early preview, online playground and watch the “Introducing TypeScript” video (also below).

Windows Phone developers: How to create an infinite scrollable list with LongListSelector. Windows Phone users love to swipe their phones smoothly to get to the information they want. Whether it’s swiping horizontally via panorama and pivot controls, or swiping vertical lists in areas such as the People Hub, users view the phone as a small window into an infinite amount of useful information. We as developers have a responsibility to make it look and feel like the information is always available in the viewport while users are swiping around. Check out this Windows Phone Developer Blog post from Rohan Thakkar that explains how to pre-fetch information to create an infinite scrollable list for Windows Phone 7.5 using the LongListSelector control.

Microsoft at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. This week, the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing conference kicks off in Baltimore, Maryland. The event is focused on bringing the research and career interests of women in computing to the forefront. This year’s theme is “Are We There Yet?” and no doubt will focus on the international decline in the numbers of women majoring in computer science and a stubbornly persistent gender gap in information technology employment. Get more of the story and read a great profile on Microsoft’s Lili Cheng, pictured below, who will attend the event.

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Announcing the Microsoft Accelerator for Windows Azure, powered by TechStars. On Monday, we announced the Microsoft Accelerator for Windows Azure program in Seattle. Ten startups have been selected to participate in the three-month intense hands-on mentor program powered by our partners at TechStars and the Microsoft BizSpark program, where they will develop new products and businesses using Windows Azure. Read more about it over on the Windows Azure Team Blog.

Windows app devs: Creating a great printing experience in Windows 8. When we reimagined Windows, we took the opportunity to rethink all the different aspects of printing – the user experience, the developer platform and the broad device ecosystem – and how they work together to give a great overall experience. In this Sept. 25 post on the Windows 8 App Developer Blog, we give an overview of the user experience and the developer platform of printing in Windows 8. We also describe how you can tailor the user experience in a way that meets your app’s requirements.

Technology making an impact in the NFL. The NFL was big news last week, not least due to Monday Night Football here in Seattle. A post on GeekWire was a welcome departure from that discussion – even if the topic was NFL focused. In this Sept. 27 Next at Microsoft post, Steve Clayton talks about X2IMPACT, a local Seattle startup that’s doing some fascinating and important work to help make the NFL a safer arena for athletes. X2IMPACT’s Concussion Management System, when combined with a digital mouth guard (pictured below), also made by X2, enables coaches to see head impact data in real-time and asses concussions through monitoring the accelerometers in a players mouth guard.

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Use Skype URIs to start Skype chats and calls from websites or mobile apps. Skype URIs provide a simple way for developers to initiate Skype calls and chats directly from their websites, desktop and mobile apps. As long as the user has Skype installed on their computer or mobile device, the URI will bring the user into the Skype app to connect the call or send the chat. This enables a convenient, yet familiar, mechanism for users to reach their friends, family and businesses. More info is available on the Skype Developer blog.

That’s it for this edition of The Midweek Download! Thanks for reading!

Posted by Jeff Meisner
Editor, The Official Microsoft Blog