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Welcome to the Sands of MAUI—newsletter-style issues dedicated to bringing together latest .NET MAUI content relevant to developers.

A particle of sand—tiny and innocuous. But put a lot of sand particles together and we have something big—a force to reckon with. It is the smallest grains of sand that often add up to form massive beaches, dunes and deserts.

Most .NET developers are looking forward to .NET Multi-platform App UI (MAUI)—the evolution of Xamarin.Forms with .NET 6. Going forward, developers should have much more confidence in the technology stack and tools as .NET MAUI empowers native cross-platform solutions on mobile and desktop.

While it is a long flight until we reach the sands of MAUI, developer excitement is palpable in all the news/content as we tinker and prepare for .NET MAUI. Like the grains of sand, every piece of news/article/video/tutorial/stream contributes towards developer knowledge and we grow a community/ecosystem willing to learn and help.

Sands of MAUI is a humble attempt to collect all the .NET MAUI awesomeness in one place. Here's what is noteworthy for the week of August 16, 2021:

.NET MAUI Preview 7

Another month and time for another fresh .NET MAUI release—Preview 7 this time. David Ortinau detailed all the goodies included in Preview 7, starting with the new Layout system—the LayoutManager helps organize the visual tree and is optimized for consistency, performance and maintainability.

Also included in .NET MAUI Preview 7 are accessibility focused capabilities based on the new SemanticService—a new SetSemanticFocus aids in UI focus when using screen readers and support for font scaling honors user adjustment of text scaling preferences in the OS. With feature-packed releases, things are shaping up nicely for the first Release Candidate of .NET MAUI scheduled for October.


.NET MAUI Preview 7 Overview

Like clockwork, a .NET MAUI release is followed by an awesome Gerald Versluis YouTube video. Gerald provides a developer's perspective as he digs through all that is new in .NET MAUI Preview 7. Of particular excitement is how .NET MAUI runs on the latest .NET 6 and now has support in the latest Visual Studio 2022 bits. Like most developers, Gerald is excited to see the .NET MAUI templates in VS 2022 Preview 3 and code-sharing potential of .NET MAUI Blazor apps.


.NET MAUI Preview 7 Setup

Heard of .NET MAUI but haven't started tinkering with it yet? James Montemagno has the perfect YouTube video to get you going with .NET MAUI Preview 7 bits. James covers some .NET MAUI basics, but more importantly walks you through the development machine setup—both on a Mac with CLI/VS Code and then on Windows with VS 2022 Preview 3. If you have been dragging your feet diving into .NET MAUI, now is the time with tools and setup nearing production readiness.


.NET MAUI Debugging in VS Code

Tinkering with .NET MAUI on a Mac? Sure you have CLI tools, but the build/debug process requires a bit of manual setup. Developer Vijay Anand wrote up a nifty post on how to use VS Code on a Mac with the Comet for .NET Mobile extension to automate the process. As a refresher, Comet comes from James Clancey and gang and is the experimental way of bringing MVU design pattern to building the visual UI tree with .NET MAUI.

Even if you are not using the MVU way, as Vijay points out—the Comet extension does actually help in automating the build/change/debug cycle with VS Code running on a Mac. You can start with a default MAUI CLI project template, choose an emulator/device and be able to build/launch the app—all from within VS Code.


.NET MAUI Community Toolkit Standup

Most seasoned Xamarin developers see a ton of value in the Xamarin Community Toolkit—the OSS toolkit with reusable artifacts for Xamarin.Forms development. The Xamarin Community Toolkit is evolving into the MAUI Community Toolkit, with backward compatibility as apps migrate from Xamarin.Forms to .NET MAUI.

The .NET Foundation hosted the first .NET MAUI Community Toolkit standup—a monthly open discussion with some of the core contributors on latest news and roadmap updates. And the best smile on the internet award unanimously goes to Brandon Minnick.


That's it for now.

We'll see you next week with more awesome content relevant to .NET MAUI.

Cheers, developers!

About the Author

Sam Basu

Sam Basu is a technologist, author, speaker, Microsoft MVP, gadget-lover and Progress Developer Advocate for Telerik products. With a long developer background, he now spends much of his time advocating modern web/mobile/cloud development platforms on Microsoft/Telerik technology stacks. His spare times call for travel, fast cars, cricket and culinary adventures with the family. You can find him on the internet.

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