Microsoft to publish extra code to make third party WP7 apps more consistent

At TechEd Australia this week, Microsoft’s Peter Torr suggested that the Windows Phone team will ship more sample code after the final release of the Windows Phone 7 SDK to close the last few inches between first-party and third-party applications.

Unlike the panoramic and pivot controls which are coming to complete the core SDK, an example of the extra code Microsoft will be publishing is the tilt effect. Today, this effect are exclusive to Microsoft’s own Start tiles and application controls which all have a subtle but delightful distortion when pressed, as if they were floating in 3D space.

Some third parties have since tried to emulate the effect with their own implementation with results that are similar but not quite the same – an issue that would have only caused frustration over time considering the emphasis on consistency in the platform. More recently, Peter has published some code on his blog that third parties can easily utilize to achieve a consistent results (using the official algorithms) in their own applications.

Code samples like the tilt plus others including but not limited to the “swoosh” animation (ex. in the mail app) will be making their way to MSDN to form the official documentation for third party developers to implement, if they wish.

In the same spirit of helping developers, it’s also highly likely Microsoft will be publishing the complete source code for some of their out-of-box applications (ex. Weather, Stocks, Shopping List) so that third parties can understand how applications are “intended” to be built. Very helpful indeed.

12 insightful thoughts

    1. I dont understand, they are talking about Microsoft to publish extra code to make third party WP7 apps more consistent for mobile. I referred to Android apps being more freely available?? I dont get it Tommo.

  1. On a relevant note, I wonder why they aren’t simply adding it to the SDK. Could it be added later as a supplemental add-on? Or is just linking to the source code enough? Hmm.

  2. I have been personally calling for this to happen for some time. I spoke to Peter Torr, and others about offering either guidance or samples for the tilt effects, as well as transitions and other animations which are used in the native parts of the OS.

    I look forward to these samples and documentation turning up!

  3. I hope the terms of use of the sample app code is better than that of the Windows sidebar/gadget samples (which ban re-use of the code (Want a better multi-region clock? Do it all from scratch! What, you thought we’d encourage people to make rich use of this platform?), although the language at the top of the gadget .js/.css files seems to have been toned down in the Win7 versions from what I remember of the Vista ones).

  4. “it’s also highly likely Microsoft will be publishing the complete source code for some of their out-of-box applications (ex. Weather, Stocks, Shopping List) so that third parties can understand how applications are “intended” to be built”

    I think it’s more than guaranteed, since they already stated that’s why they built these apps, and made a Channel 9 video about it

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