Farewell Microsoft MVP Program (and Thank You) – #mvpbuzz

I have been honored to be awarded as a Microsoft MVP eight times since 2009. The next award cycle begins on July 1st, and I have learned that I will not be among those re-awarded.

While it is disappointing to hear, as I have not changed my own level of engagement with the community, it is not completely unexpected. The Microsoft developer community is thriving today. There are more developers stepping up as community leaders than ever before. As they push the bar higher, the rest of us need to push ourselves as well.

My readers will not notice any changes to the Morning Dew based on this news, other than the MVP logo disappearing from my blog’s sidebar. I will continue to do what I do every day. You will see an increase in activity on my other blogs, WPF Tips and the newly launched UWP Tips. Be sure to check them out.

Also be sure to connect with me at TechBash 2017, the conference that several current and former MVPs (including me) started last year with TechBash 2016. We’re going to have a blast again at the Kalahari Resort in Pocono Manor, PA this fall. This non-profit developer conference has been our baby since mid-2015, taking many hours of our time every month to plan and host. It easily doubled my time working for the community over the last two years. Ping us (info@techbash.com) if you’re interested in helping out as well.

I would like to thank the MVP Award program for many great years of engagement. I am looking forward to joining MVP Reconnect and perhaps rejoining the ranks of the MVPs again someday. Thank you to Esther for being a great advocate for a number of years in the program. Thank you to Joe for reaching out personally to break the news and for doing it with class. And a huge thank you to everyone who already reached out on Twitter and Facebook when I announced the news this week.

EDIT: Adding a huge thanks to my family for supporting me over the years. My commitment to the Microsoft community has taken countless hours of my time. They have been hugely supportive of the time spent and travel required.

Congratulations to all of the soon to be announced new and returning MVPs! Keep doing great things and keep pushing the bar higher.



Top 20 Recommended Microsoft Build 2017 Sessions for C# Developers

Because I was unable to attend MS Build 2017, last week I went to look for a few sessions to watch. I visited the Build 2017 landing page on Channel 9 and there were 458 sessions available for viewing. Where do you start?

If your interests are similar to mine (C#, WPF, UWP, Xamarin, .NET Core, TypeScript, Aurelia), here is a Top 20 list to get you started.

Enjoy the sessions! You’ll notice that in order to keep the list down to 20, I did not include any of the excellent Channel 9 interview sessions or pre-recorded sessions. Be sure to go check out some of these as well.

The Dew Review – Kinect for Windows SDK Programming Guide

Packt Publishing recently released a new title about programming for the Kinect for Windows SDK written by Abhijit Jana. I agreed to read the book and write up a review because I have been for a good reason to explore the SDK myself.

Kinect for Windows SDK Programming Guide is a great place to start learning about developing software for the Kinect for Windows device. Familiarity with .NET development is the only pre-requisite to the content in this book. Although you will get much more value from the book if you also have a Kinect device to tests your applications.

Before getting in to using the SDK, the author gives some details of the Kinect hardware, including the differences between the original Kinect for Xbox device and the newer Kinect for Windows. Although both can be used with Windows, the device designed for Windows has some different capabilities. Getting the SDK set up and connecting to the device are also covered in the introduction.

The next couple chapters provide an introduction to the SDK and some basics of programming against different capabilities of the Kinect, including depth, color, infrared and audio streams. Developers with some Kinect SDK experience can skip this section and dive directly into the subsequent chapters which provide more depth on these topics. In addition to capturing these data streams, the author provides some excellent advice on skeletal tracking and speech recognition.

Chapter nine goes through the intricacies of recognizing and handling gestures  in your applications, chapter 10 covers how to handle input from multiple Kinect devices connected to a PC, and chapter 11 adds other components into the mix (like Azure, Netduino and Windows Phone).

As a newbie to the world of Kinect development, I found the material in the book to be very helpful. I think it would be a great addition to and Kinect developer’s bookshelf, whether you are a casual or commercial developer of Kinect software.