WPDD South – Wrap up

Well, it’s been almost a month since we held the inaugural Windows Phone Dev Day South back in July and what a great event it turned out to be. From humble beginnings as a couple of windows phone geeks organising a get together to what turned out to be a full on Windows Phone mini-conference on a gloriously sunny day at the seaside!

A massive thanks to everyone who came along and participated in the event (around 40 of us in total!) and particularly to the speakers for giving their time and sharing their experiences.

Our Apps

We showed and discussed a handful of apps developed by attendees, below lists all of the apps, their authors and links to the marketplace:

The Sessions

After a brief welcome and demo of apps we moved onto the days presentations.

Dan Thomas – My First Windows Phone App

The theme of this talk was to dive in and have a go. Taking the “If I can do it anyone can” route and sharing some learnings along the way. Even by building and releasing a simple throw-away app the experience gained by going through the process is invaluable and puts you in good stead for future projects.

Slides

Scott Lovegrove – Sketchflow

Scott shared with us the benefits Sketchflow can bring to Windows Phone prototyping and development process and how quickly you can get up and running without having to throw away your efforts. Scott had prepared a sample twitter client and demonstrated the process of converting from mock ups to app.

Slides

David Hamilton – Windows Phone and Azure

David is at the Helm of Pepper, a social music platform initially focused on Windows Phone. He shared their approach, architecture and rationale for choosing to work with Windows Phone.

Slides

Robert and Rich – WPCentral

The WPCentral guys, being the on the pulse kinda chaps that they are, were out in force and shared their intricate knowledge of Windows Phone media coverage. They offered advice and tips of how to get noticed and what makes a news-worthy app.

Hermit Dave – Windows 8 dev for Windows phone developers

Hermit’s talk compared common Windows Phone tools and techniques with their new Windows 8 counterparts. He offered very clear comparisons and also gave insight into new features in Windows 8. He also triggered some interesting discussion around XNA.

Slides

Henry and Ahmed – Angry Mango

Angry Mango are the team behind the award winning Windows Phone game Mush. Henry and Ahmed gave us insight into the creative and technical production process of Mush. They also shared their experiences of being included under the Microsoft Game Studios umbrella.

Slides

Paul Foster – Microsoft

Paul closed out the day with a fantastic summary of the latest announcements from Microsoft. Topics included Windows 8, Surface and Windows Phone 8. Paul’s round up was well received as we had a number of people who were not already familiar with the upcoming releases.

Shout outs

After the presentations were finished we had a few announcements to share:

  • Thanks to @Redweb and the team for hosting the venue and looking after us all, they did a phenomenal job.
  • Matt Lacey (@mrlacey) organises the Windows Phone User Group who meet every month in London, follow @wpug.
  • Jonathan Ginn (@jonginn) is working on an upcoming game hack day, follow him to keep informed.

Event write ups

We’ve had a couple of glowing reviews of the day by attendees, cheers guys!

What next?

Scott and I were very happy with the event and the overwhelming feedback from the day was that more events like this would be welcome. There was a fairly even split as to whether another all-day event or a shorter evening user group type would be better. Whatever format we end up with, rest assured we’ll be doing something soon. So watch this space!

If you have any ideas, would like to present at a future event or any other feedback let us know :)
@dannyt and @scottisafool

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