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Are you wondering how influencers and professionals feel about the recent changes in the .NET world?

We reached out toJason Follas from Falafel Software to ask his opinion on the future of .NET. Jason is a Senior Software Architect, a Windows Platform MVP, frequent conference speaker and conference organizer.

To find out what he thinks of Windows 10, Universal Apps, Windows on IoT and developing for HoloLens, read our short interview with him.

Q. Please introduce yourself

A. I’m a Senior Software Architect for Falafel Software, a Windows Platform MVP, frequent conference speaker and conference organizer. As a hobby, I’ve written a few games for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1, and I've made tens of dollars in the process.

Q. Anything exciting you are working on with .NET?

A. Last summer, I played a small role in the development of the Windows Phone companion app for the Microsoft Band. I’ve since worked on a neat web project for a client that uses geospatial data (SQL Server Spatial and Entity Framework).  Geospatial is something that I present on at a lot of conferences, and it’s always fun to be able to back up conference speaking with actual experience on a given topic.

Q. What do you think of Windows 10?

A. The OS itself is a great next-step in the evolution of Windows. It addresses many of the complaints that people had with Windows 8 (the Start Menu being one of the biggest). The unification story (further merging of Windows and Windows Phone) is wonderful from an app development perspective, and will hopefully aid in improving the market share of the phone (disclaimer: I carry a Windows Phone, and feel that the platform is unfairly being written off by the industry). The free upgrade for existing Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 installations is a brilliant strategy from Microsoft to force adoption. Other than that, I’m reserving my final opinion until later previews that show off more of the final functionality.

Q. What are your thoughts about Windows Universal Apps?

A. I love the idea of Universal Apps, and have written a handful of casual games already that are available for both Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1. In particular, I think it’s brilliant how a web developer can create an app using HTML 5, JavaScript and CSS, and deploy that app onto a Windows Phone, a Surface or other machine running full Windows and an Xbox One.  Most apps–especially Line of Business (LOB) apps--do not have heavy graphics or animation requirements, and can easily be written in HTML/JavaScript without the user knowing the difference. There are far more web developers collectively in the world than native developers for any given platform, and these folks, in particular, would not need to abandon their skillsets to write a first-class app for the Windows ecosystem.

Q. What's the future for Windows on IoT?

A. I’m excited about the latest announcement that a version of Windows will be available for the new Raspberry Pi 2.0. Details about the Windows 10 for IoT operating system are still pretty scarce, so it’s hard to know what to expect. But, hopefully there will be a .NET runtime, which means that programming for the Raspberry Pi just became that much more interesting to me. Now you have a tiny $35 Windows machine with I/O that can be hooked up to sensors and/or serial devices and placed anywhere–that’s a powerful story for Windows developers.

Q. What would you want in the next iteration of MSFT Band?

A. A SDK that enables me to surface a user interface on the band from an app running on my phone. Think about a simple XAML or HTML-like language that defines text layout and simple input, like buttons. The phone app sends the “page” to the band, which displays the information. If the user clicks a button, then the phone app receives the response. I think this simple capability would allow developers to write the types of apps that they want to run on the Band, but would not require actual firmware code to be written.

Q. How do you feel about holograms? Will you develop for HoloLens? 

A. Based on the surprise announcement and demo during the Windows 10 keynote, I think HoloLens could be the most significant game-changing technology to be released in at least the past five years, and will set the tone for computing to come for the next decade and beyond.   don’t see the current form factor (the large “ski goggles”) as being something that will be worn out in public, like Google Glass was intended to be. Rather, you’ll find people using the device at home and in the office for work, meetings and games.

There are little details available about how to develop for the HoloLens. It seems to be a very cool platform with a lot of potential, and I have all kinds of ideas for what can be done with it. But for me to get involved, any sort of SDK will need to be dead simple to use. I don’t want to mess with matrices or quaternions in my code–all of those things should be abstracted away from the developer. If this is what Microsoft is planning from the release, then it’s a no-brainer that we’ll all be writing holographic apps. Something tells me, though, that the reality at launch is going to be less than ideal.


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