justin angel

It’s no secret that your Xbox One will be more than just a game console when it launches later this year. There’s of course the media aspects that are being expanded on from the Xbox 360, namely video and music capabilities. But it could be so much more than with rumors and hints of Windows 8 apps and games working on the machine. The latest fuel to the fire comes from Justin Angel who noticed something that’s been in front of all of us for a long time.

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Windows Phone 8 is reportedly set to go to “full HD” with a 1080x1920 resolution later this year, an update that will come with the GDR3 OS refresh presumably for OEMs.

Now, Justin Angel, who used to work with Microsoft and Nokia, has managed to dig up some emulator files for Windows Phone that coincidentally support that 1080P resolution. The files come by way of Visual Studio 2013, which was previewed at Build last week.

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Justin Angel, Principal Engineer for Windows Phone experience at Nokia, has released a new Bluetooth SDK for Windows Phone 8 that enables developers to take advantage of connectivity with MindWave portable EEG headsets. Said devices can pair with a Windows Phone to display readings in both data and chart form for users to look through.

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Backing up app data on SkyDrive--not cool with Microsoft?

An interesting controversy spring up over at the AppHub forums over the use of SkyDrive for backing up app data—not so much photos and documents (which is fine) but rather unintelligible files created by apps for app-specific data.

The crux of it was someone from the SkyDrive team made a comment that using SkyDrive for such a purpose goes against the user agreement for the API and it could result in the Windows Phone app being yanked from the Marketplace.

Justin Angel, Principal Engineer for Windows Phone experience at Nokia, fervently objected to this idea noting

“As SkyDrive API usage is not part of the Application Certification Guidelines I resent that team threatening app developers with expulsion from the marketplace for misuse of their API.”

It’s certainly a good point although we see the reasoning behind the SkyDrive team’s position. Luckily things are not as dire as expected.

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We're back this week with special guest, Nokia's Justin Angel who joins Editor-in-chief Daniel Rubino and developer Jay Bennett for an interesting and exciting discussion of Windows Phone "Tango" and what it means both for fragmentation, developers and consumers. What's more crazy than that? The fact that Justin called in via his Lumia 610 on Skype.

We also go through some news, apps and take your questions.

Listen in or watch the HD video after the break!

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Join Daniel Rubino, Jay Bennett, Rafael Rivera and special guest, Nokia's Justin Angel today for an all new WPCentral Podcast, live at 5pm EST in streaming video.

Justin Angel, who has contributed a lot to the Windows Phone ecosystem before he was hired by Nokia, will be discussing Tango and 256 MB development best practices, as well as taking our questions and yours. (See his site here and follow him on Twitter: @JustinAngel)

Hang out in our chat room to join the conversation right here on the site!

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Justin Angel, a well known character within the Windows Phone community and who was recently hired by Nokia, is giving away 5 Nokia Lumia 800s (our review) to homebrew developers over at the XDA Developers forum. Although this is no competition or sweepstake, as Angel will be selecting only those who need the device and will put it to good use by creating and developing apps for the community or for those who own Lumia handsets. Here are the goals that the homebrew developers who wish to apply need to have (set out by Angel):

  • Port existing homebrew apps/features/hacks to Nokia Lumia 800.
  • Create new Nokia Lumia specific homebrew apps/features/hacks.
  • Anything else that you can convince him makes sense.

So, how does one get hold of said free phones? It's pretty simple. You are to respond to Angel's forum post (source link below) with the following:

  • What will you use the Nokia Lumia 800 for? The more specific the better. (see the aforementioned list of goals)
  • Up to 3 links (+ explanation) showing that you have the previous experience required to meet your development goal.
  • Anything else you think will help you get one of the Lumia 800 phones.

When does this offer close? December 23rd, or later (depending on when submissions die down). Also, this is not limited to the U.S., should you live elsewhere you may still enter. See photo of the handsets above. Head on over to the developers forum to submit your entry and be sure to read through Angel's post to get the best idea on how to approach your application.

Source: XDA Developers Forum; via PC

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Nokia has managed to grab one of the good ones, folks! Justin Angel (see previous coverage), who you know recently from his Metro Pandora SDK as well as WP7 apps 'Neurons' and 'United Nations News', has announced that he is going to work for Nokia as their Principal Engineer on Windows Phone 7 developer experience.

Nokia, you have great taste.

Angel has been a big part of the Sliverlight development community and had previously worked for Microsoft. His experience goes deep as he has worked on iHeartRadio, Silverlight Toolkit, Metro Pandora, WP7 Development Best Practices Wiki, Marketplace statistics and the AVG-gate issue.

While his direct, free reign contribution to the Windows Phone community will be sorely missed, this job will allow him to have a huge influence over Nokia Windows Phones. We'll surely all benefit from his skill, dedication and design decisions in the future.

Once again, a huge congratulations to Justin and Nokia--we like where this is going! Follow Justin on Twitter @JustinAngel and see his Metro-themed website here.

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A few weeks ago, Windows Phone and Silverlight developer Justin Angel (see site) made a proof-of-concept app for Pandora Radio--the famed music streaming randomizing service--on Windows Phone. We gave it a spin and due to its popularity, Justin agreed to not only make the app, but make an SDK for developers. The latter would allow others to make 3rd party Pandora apps for the platform as Justin laid out the instructions for the backend/streaming part.

Now, the Metro Pandora SDK is finished and available for others to go take a gander at. We could imagine all sorts of cool applications of this, including other media streaming apps incorporating Pandora as a "feed". And now that the groundwork is laid out, Justin can presumably start working on the app itself, which we imagine will raise a few eyebrows at Pandora. Of course if the Marketplace rejects or pulls it, like Cracked Reader, there is always the burgeoning Homebrew scene which will gladly take it.

Source: Codeplex

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The other day, we demoed Justin Angel's proof-of-concept Pandora Radio app for Windows Phone. The concept was meant to show that Pandora's system and formats were extremely compatible with Windows Phone and that there's little reason for them to not release an app.

Since we have no final word on if Pandora is bringing an official player to Windows Phone (or anytime soon), Justin has evidently heeded the call of many who asked: He'll release his own Pandora app.

That's good news for us, especially since Angel is more than a competent developer--just give his United Nations News (video) or Neurons (video) apps a spin to get an idea of his excellent work. Speaking of...where are those Mango updates, Justin? :-P

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Justin Angel, Silverlight and Windows Phone developer, has done some digging around the Pandora AIR app as well as their service in general and has come to a single conclusion: this is all very compatible with Windows Phone 7. Which raises the obvious question: Where's the app?

In a series of Tweets, Justin breaks down what he finds:

"Playing a @pandora_radio "internal-tuner.pandora.com" MP4 on my WP7 right now. From a technical perspective a WP7 Pandora app is quite easy."

"Finished decompiling @pandora_radio AIR app. this can DEFINITELY be ported to WP7. It's all JSON auth and MP4s. WTF Pandora? Just port this."

"@pandora_radio you've got some 'splainin to do! Your format matches WP7 specs to the letter. Where's your WP7 app?"

Indeed. And to prove his assertions, he very quickly whipped up a XAP file which successfully pulls down the Pandora information and allows flawless streaming to our phones. Sure, the frippery of up/down voting is not present, nor are the on-screen controls, but those are easy to add. What's important is the data and interaction with Pandora's servers that count and for all intents and purposes, they work flawlessly and beautifully with Windows Phone. So where's the app? Hopefully something official is in the pipes as there is no technical reason for it not to exist. (There is this tweet from Leon Zandman which may suggest something).

If you have a developer unlocked device, you can grab the XAP file from Justin here.

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We broke the news the other night about AVG releasing an antivirus suite for Windows Phone. The app seemed harmless enough (and borderline useless to boot), only being able to manually scan photos and music files, while also offering "safe URL" web surfing.

Having a useless app is one thing, having an app that can potentially do some mischievous shenanigans is another. Its the latter that AVG is being accused of. Yes folks, AVG's app for Windows Phone may be spyware--that's irony.

Justin Angel broke down the app, did some analysis on it and found it is improperly using the Geo Location (GeoCoordinateWatcher) to track the phone and send all possible identifying information (phone make, model, your email address, location) onto AVG. For what purpose? Over at Centurion's Blog, he breaks it down to four possible uses:

  • Quality assurance
  • Info is sent to their Android app
  • Geo info is used for location based search
  • Collected data is used for marketing purposes

Whichever the reason, nonee of them benefit you, meaning that this app has gone from questionable value to not-recommended at all. Furthermore, Microsoft's Brandon Watson is taking a look at the app too to see if it violates any of the Marketplace guidelines. Stay tuned...

Source: Justin Angel; via Mobility Digest, Centurion's Blog; image credit @ailon

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United Nations News is a free app by developer Justin Angel (see "Neurons" video) that pulls down all the top news right from the United Nations, including articles, video, radio and pictures.

Although many people don't follow the U.N. directly, this app makes a strong case to get you to do just that due to its excellent user experience and UI layout. In short, it's just darn nice to look at (even if the news is a bit sullen).

The app is of course free, open source and now award-winning. Those are three reasons why you should give it a spin, plus, it might make you a better global citizen if you know what's going on in the world. Just sayin'. Grab it here in the Marketplace.

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We mentioned Neurons awhile back. It's a video streaming app dedicated to science and features TED Talks, Fora.TV, Science Dump and The RSA. Designed by Justin Angel, it's quite useful and nicely laid out.

It's free, available now and quite impressive. Unlike the TED app which I covered last week (see here), this will work over 3G, making it much more practical. It's open source, meaning anyone can improve upon it if they wish and integrates with the Music & Video hub nicely (i.e. previously watched material shows up).

The program is solid and has some nice pizazz to it. Highly recommended for those interested in all areas of science.

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Although we've been impressed so far with Microsoft's execution of Windows Phone 7, not all are happy and we're starting to see why.

While some 3,000+ developer devices are out in the wild, that is a drop in the bucket of those who want/need a device to actually test their applications on in time for an October release. Of course, we get it: logistically its hard to make thousands of pre-production devices and make them available to developers and ship them out--it's no trivial problem for Microsoft. Nor is deciding who gets priority for the phones.

Still, at least one enthusiast Silverlight programmer has taken to his Twitter stream to vent some and we kind of see his point too. After all, we have maybe 10 weeks till release (!) and developers are still missing programming tools and hardware to work on. Justin Angel believes this is a recipe for disaster, where there will be a clash between what developers have worked on via an incomplete emulator versus how it actually performs.

Other have noted that this is just run-of-the-mill for any new software platform, as we've seen these type of issues on WebOS, Android and even the iPhone when they were being rolled out. On the other hand, Microsoft may have to do better to get this right, despite keeping on track for a holiday release.

We're not developers, but we do see both sides here. Hopefully Justin and others will be able to get a device soon, Microsoft can deliver some of those features for the emulator and we'll have some solid software come October. We should finally note that "big" developers (Netflix, Foursquare, New York Times, Seesmic, etc.) have long had all the tools and hardware, so this seems more about independent developers at this point.

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