Developing with Microsoft technologies
16 Jul 2019

Hot Reloading Declarative C# UI for Xamarin.Forms with CSharpForMarkup and LiveSharp

Modern UI frameworks such as Flutter and SwiftUI offer hot reload for declarative UI, in a single programming language. By using CSharpForMarkup with LiveSharp, you can enjoy a similar developer experience in declarative C# for Xamarin Forms today. See it in action: Imo it is...
Read More
12 Jul 2019

Why is declarative coded UI important for the future of Xamarin Forms?

In the 2019 Xamarin Developer Summit keynote the Xamarin team presented an inclusive mindset going forward, amongst others for using both XAML and C# for UI: I am very happy to see the Xamarin team embrace this! However, there still is a lot to do before declarative C# is made an...
Read More
13 Oct 2016

Microsoft HoloLens with Skype inspires to innovate

At Workstreampeople I have been researching the capabilities of Microsoft’s augmented reality device, the HoloLens. Since Workstreampeople is in the Dialogue Management business – e.g. in remote support scenario’s – I am primarily looking for innovation opportunities...
Read More
13 Jul 2016

Building BFF – Backend For Frontend API’s for Xamarin Mobile Apps

When building a mobile app that consumes web API’s, do you sometimes get the feeling that this requires way too much code on the client? Does your mobile app performance suffer because you need to do multiple API requests and a lot of processing of API responses, before you...
Read More
27 Nov 2014

How to Share Xamarin Forms Data Binding Code across Xamarin Sketches and Apps – Without Using Strings

When coding a Xamarin Forms UI, Xamarin Sketches can increase your productivity to previously unattainable levels. Being able to see the UI in a phone simulator update while you edit the UI code, with a less than one second lag, is so much more productive than building,...
Read More
18 Nov 2014

Why and How to Get Started with Visual Studio 2015 and Xamarin Forms

Last week at the Visual Studio Connect(); event, Microsoft announced availability of Visual Studio 2015 Preview, with support for creating native iOS, OS X, Android and Windows Phone apps in C# with Xamarin. This was just one of many announcements that made clear that Microsoft...
Read More
05 Nov 2014

Presented at Microsoft event: Mobile Cross-Platform Development with Xamarin and Visual Studio

Yesterday at the Xamarin event that Microsoft organized in Hoofddorp, The Netherlands, I presented a fun session together with Maarten Sikkema (CTO at Macaw, where I work). We told the story about how we created and marketed a successful consumer app for the World Cup...
Read More
26 Aug 2014

Poollie: WK 2014 – Lessons Learned From Developing a Successful Multi-Platform App With Xamarin

This post describes the main lessons I learned while developing and supporting a successful native consumer app for iOS, Android and Windows Phone: Poollie WK 2014. I will focus on client-side cross-platform architecture and development; the lessons learned while developing the...
Read More
24 Apr 2014

Building Cross-Platform iBeacon Apps for iOS, Android and Windows with C# and Xamarin

This is a $5 Qualcomm Gimbal beacon in iBeacon mode, being detected on an Android phone and an iPhone, in an app built with C# and Xamarin: Note that there is no Windows Phone in this picture. This is because the brand-new Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) support in Windows Phone 8.1,...
Read More
09 Apr 2014

How to build Xamarin iOS and Android Apps with the new Universal Windows App template from Visual Studio 2013 Update 2

When I saw the new Universal Windows App project type demonstrated in the Microsoft Build keynote last week, I just had to try it out with an existing Xamarin project. This actually proved quite simple; just copying one line from the Windows project file to the xamarin projects...
Read More
23 Oct 2013

Creating a Cross-Platform Native App Using MvvmQuickCross and Xamarin, Part 2: Android App

If you are a .NET developer and you want to create an iOS or Android application with a native user experience and/or good code maintainability, using Xamarin is an attractive option. Xamarin allows you to leverage your C# + .NET skills and the Microsoft Visual Studio development...
Read More
30 Aug 2013

Creating a Cross-Platform Native App Using MvvmQuickCross and Xamarin, Part 1: Cross-Platform Code and Windows 8 App

If you are a .NET developer and you want to create an iOS or Android application with a native user experience and/or good code maintainability, using Xamarin is an attractive option. Xamarin allows you to leverage your C# + .NET skills and the Microsoft Visual Studio development...
Read More
16 Aug 2013

Improve Code Maintainability with Long Lines(!) in Visual Studio Code Snippets

Long lines of code with multiple statements on them are a bad programming practice, right? Well yes, but as with most rules – not always. E.g. when you insert a code snippet for a data-bindable property with two parameters like this:compare the reading effort of the generated...
Read More
19 Nov 2012

Work in progress

Thanks for visiting, this site is being redesigned in “Metro” style. All existing content remains available at the original urls. Full functionality will be available again in a few days.
Read More
26 Nov 2009

Managing Environment-Specific web.config, app.config and EntLib Config Files

When you need to deploy a solution to multiple environments (e.g. separate Development, Test, Acceptation and Production or DTAP environments), you often have a set of environment-specific settings that you need to manage. Since version 2.1 the Macaw Solutions Factory supports...
Read More
17 Nov 2009

How to setup BizTalk 2009 BAM Portal on a 64 Bit OS in IIS 7

I just finished setting up BizTalk 2009 (Developer Edition) on a W2008R2 x64 machine with the following components: Initially, the BizTalk Server Configuration utility failed to install the BAM portal. The error log reported that IIS was in 64 bit mode where 32 bit mode was...
Read More
02 Nov 2009

Detect 32 or 64 bits Windows – regardless of WoW64 – with the PowerShell OSArchitecture function

In 64-bits versions of Windows Operating Systems, a subsystem called Windows on Windows 64 (WoW64) enables you to run 32 bits applications. Even to date, many Windows applications only exist in a 32 bits version – not the least of which is Microsoft’s own Visual Studio(!)...
Read More
27 Oct 2009

Call inline C# from PowerShell with InvokeCSharp

Out of the box PowerShell 1.0 makes it very easy to call any managed code in an assembly. However, one of the strong points of a scripted language such as PowerShell is that you can debug and extend it in any environment without the need for development tools or additional source...
Read More
15 Sep 2009

Factory Feature – Create Component

With Create Component you can quickly add instances of the sample template components to your existing solution. You simply select the component type and specify the name of the new component; all other actions are automated. The component is created automatically in the correct...
Read More
28 Apr 2009

Macaw Vision on SharePoint Release Management

The current version of SharePoint (Windows SharePoint Services 3 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007) delivers a powerful collaboration platform. It also offers excellent customization capabilities through configuration and custom code. This customization and...
Read More
24 Apr 2009

Factory Overview, Part 1: A Bird’s Eye View of the Macaw Solutions Factory

The Macaw Solutions Factory is quite a big thing, even though it fits both small and large solutions. In this post I will take you on a quick tour of the major systems and tools in the Factory. Later posts in the Factory Overview series will zoom in on the details of those...
Read More
07 Apr 2009

Factory Vision, Part 1: Introducing the Macaw Solutions Factory

This is the start of a story about a three-year companywide Software Factory effort. The result is not your common code-generating or process-focused factory. In our effort to realize maximum value, we focused on solving common challenges that existing factories do not address....
Read More
30 Jun 2008

DSL + UML = Pragmatic Modeling in Rosario

Steve Cook just announced that he is moving to the VSTS Architect Edition team, to work with Cameron Skinner building UML tools for Rosario on top of the DSL Tools. As you may recall, we can expect these five UML 2.1 diagram implementations in Rosario, built on top of the DSL...
Read More
09 Jun 2008

Software Factories 2.0 – Microsoft’s larger Software Factories Initiative. Will you be a Factories 2.0 Company?

In the most significant post on factories to come out of Microsoft in a long time, Jack Greenfield unveils Software Factories 2.0. The software factories initiative has been repositioned within Microsoft to address a larger scope: “Perhaps the most significant change is...
Read More
24 Dec 2007

I’m on sf.devrevolution.com

Edward Bakker announced the new software factory community portal which is located at sf.devrevolution.com. Edward asked me for feedback on the site early on, and was also kind enough to add my blog to the portal´s home page. I am convinced the folks working on software factories...
Read More
28 Nov 2007

Maintaining a SOA with the Macaw Solutions Factory

When I read Clemens’ post "Autonomous Develop Services for SOA Projects with Team Architect and Service Factory", I realized that part of his approach may integrate very well with the Macaw Solutions Factory. Clemens describes how to enable each service in a SOA...
Read More
23 Nov 2007

Visual Studio 2008 SDK 1.0 and Visual Studio 2008 Shell released

More goodness for factory builders: you can now start to target non-technical factory users with Visual Studio 2008 Shell, it was released on 2007/11/21. For details and download links see the post on the VSX Team Blog. Use DSL’s and other Visual Studio extensions without...
Read More
17 Nov 2007

The Netherlands leading in software factories…

Some time ago, Jezz Santos blogged about how the software factory community, as he knew it, seemed to be contentrated in the Netherlands. That he mentioned me made me feel good of course, but I also realized that being close to so many leading people in the softwa...
Read More
16 Oct 2007

Jack Greenfield publishes new software factory schema diagram

In fall 2007 Jack Greenfield published an article in which he includes a diagram of the factory schema that looks quite different from the one in his well-known software factories book. This is the “new” diagram from the article: and this is the diagram as published...
Read More
08 Jun 2007

Use DSL Designers stand-alone for non-technical factory users in Visual Studio 2008 Shell

Until now you could only use DSL Designers in Visual Studio (Professional and higher editions). This limited using DSL’s to those development team roles that are comfortable using Visual Studio (developers and architects). However, this has now changed with the announcement...
Read More
25 Apr 2007

Jezz Santos mentions me on his blog

Jezz Santos, MS Software Factories guru blogs about how the dutch seem to dominate the software factories community, mentioning me as well. I already received happy emails from Edward Bakker and Dennis Mulder on this (15 minutes?) of fame 🙂 Good for the factory community!
Read More
17 Jan 2007

Nice Book: Practical Software Factories in .NET

Gunther Lenz and Christoph Wienands write a nice book on how to actually design and build a software factory on the .NET platform. The book, Practical Software Factories in .NET, is based on a real, large project at Siemens, and it is a welcome companion to the original factories...
Read More
06 Dec 2006

Jezz Santos on a SharePoint Software Factory

Jezz Santos, a factory builder who is leading in designing and applying software factories, predicts that Microsoft will deliver factories with their products as well. I completely recognize his reasons why that would be a Good Thing. Jezz uses a Sharepoint Factory as an example....
Read More
27 Jun 2006

Macaw’s Software Factory on MSDN by Steve Cook

Steve Cook mentioned my article on how we are realizing the software factories vision for Macaw. So this is why my article got so many hits lately. And as a boon, it gives us our 15 minutes of fame by displaying us on MSDN. I like it 🙂
Read More
14 Apr 2006

Realizing the Software Factories Vision for a Microsoft Systems Integrator

[UPDATE this article was originally published here, I included it on this blog to get my story on factories in one place.] Vincent Hoogendoorn, Architect, Macaw April 2006 Summary This article details a case on how the Software Factories vision is being pursued and realized by a...
Read More