TechEd 2014 - Microsoft Developer News Recap

Andrew Connell

by Andrew Connell on 5/18/2014

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While typically a conference with more IT Pro content and news, there were some highlights at TechEd 2014 for some updates and announcements for developers. In this post I'll highlight a few of them with my thoughts and provide links where you can get more details.

Visual Studio 2013 Update 2 Released

This week Microsoft released Update 2 for Visual Studio 2013. This added a lot of new features such as TypeScript 1.0and other tooling improvements.

For a list of all the things in Update 2, check Soma's blog post.

Visual Studio Online REST API's and Service Hooks

Microsoft announced a new REST API with service hooks for Visual Studio Online. While the samples in the blog posts I reference below are available for anyone to use, the big benefit will come from what 3rd party organizations will do in exploiting this. For instance consider the case where you can create a work item in Visual Studio Online based off a feedback item that's been created and published within UserVoice. There are already plenty of platforms who are offering integration today, but keep an eye out for many more.

For more information on the Visual Studio Online REST API's and service hooks, check Brian Harry's blog: A new API for Visual Studio Online & check Soma's blog: Visual Studio Online REST APIs and Service Hooks.

Streamlined .NET Framework for Server & Cloud Workloads

For those applications that run on a server or in the cloud, they don't have a dependency on things like WPF or Windows Forms. To address this Microsoft has created a clout-optimized footprint for .NET that reduces the size of the .NET Framework.

For more information, check Soma's blog post.

Apache Cordova Tooling for Visual Studio

Also at TechEd, Microsoft included a preview release of Visual Studio tooling support for Apache Cordova. Cordova is an open source platform for creating and delivering cross-platform and cross-device apps using web technologies such as HTML, CSS and JavaScript. By adding this support to Visual Studio, developers can use the best IDE available to create cross platform mobile solutions. Some of the power of this announcement is summarized in Soma's blog post, announcing the tools:

Project templates are available for both JavaScript and TypeScript, and provide a standard blank Cordova starter project. Developers can pick their HTML/JavaScript framework of choice, whether Backbone and jQuery UI, or Angular.js and Bootstrap, or WinJS.

Projects can be built, deployed, and debugged against a variety of devices, device emulators and web-based mobile simulators. By default, you can use the Apache Ripple simulator to test your application in the browser before deploying to a device. This preview release also supports attaching the Visual Studio debugger to Ripple or a local emulator or a device. You can stay in Visual Studio while debugging your JavaScript and DOM layout running on an Android 4.4 device.

By installing and configuring the vs-mda-remote npm package on a Mac, you can even build for iOS, deploy to a device via iTunes, or start your app in the iOS Simulator on a Mac right from Visual Studio.

Topic: Development

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