Resources for New Phone Developers
I’m starting to do a number of hackathons with students and so I wanted to pull together a listing of resources that can help everyone get started quickly. Below is that uber list of resources. Hack on!
- Jump Start Videos – 19 videos covering common developer tasks in Windows Phone.
- AppHub Catalog – Tons of tutorials, samples and articles on Windows Phone development.
- 31 Days of Windows Phone – 31 articles that show you step-by-step how to incorporate key features of the Windows Phone OS into you application.
- 31 Days of Mango – 31 articles that show you step-by-step how to incorporate new features in the of Windows Phone 7.5 OS into your application.
- Silverlight Toolkit for Windows Phone – Includes more than 28 additional free controls like AutoComplete Box, List Picker, Hub Tile, MultiSelect List, Toggle Switch, Time Picker and more.
- Marketplace Test Kit – Included in the Windows Phone 7.1 tools (but not well known). This tool can check for many of the common mistakes that cause applications to be rejected before your app is even submitted into the marketplace.
- An image editing program such as PhotoShop, GIMP (free) or Paint.NET (free) – Needed for editing artwork, creating application icons and tiles, etc.
- A vector graphics editing program like InkScape (free) – May come in handy for editing scalable drawings that can be used in Silverlight applications and games.
- An audio editing program such as Audacity (free) – May be useful for editing and converting sound effects or music.
Starter Kits (Silverlight)
- GART – Create Augmented Reality apps and games that use the camera, compass, GPS, etc. Create Augmented Reality apps in as few as six lines of code.
- Media and Podcasts – Play audio and video. Integrate with music and videos hub.
- Physics Helper Library – Create physics-based games and apps in Silverlight by drawing elements and attaching physics behaviors directly in Expression Blend.
- RSS – Create applications that render HTML pages shared as RSS feeds.
- Schools – Build an app for your school that includes information such as News, Maps, Links, etc.
- Social – Build apps that connect to RSS, videos, Flickr, Facebook, Twitter and more.
- Translator – Build an app that does language translation, including Text to Speech.
- WordPress – Build a native app that allows users to read any WordPress blog.
Starter Kits (XNA)
- Card Game – Create card games. This kit demonstrates Blackjack.
- Catapult Wars – Like a simplified Scorched Earth or Worms.
- Dice Game – Create dice games, this kit demonstrates Yacht.
- Honeycomb – Move bees around using smoke. Avoid getting stung.
- Marble Maze – Move the ball using the accelerometer. Avoid the pitfalls.
- Memory – Like Simon Says.
- Ninja – Slice bamboo, throw shurikens, avoid dynamite. Similar to Fruit Nina.
- Platformer – Build a platformer game (similar to Mario, Sonic, etc.)
- RPG – Create advanced role playing games.
- Metro Studio – 600 free metro style icons from the cool folks at SyncFusion.
- The Noun Project – Hundreds (if not thousands) of icons for just about anything you can think of, all free. These icons will download in Scalable Vector format (SVG) and will need to be converted to PNG at the size of 48 x 48 pixels. Either InkScape or Expression Design can be used to do the conversion.
- BRKR Design Icon Pack – This pack costs $20 but it includes 350 of the most commonly used icons already sized and ready to go. This single package includes all 350 icons for Windows Phone, iPhone and Android.
- Every Stock Photo – Search thousands of images, many of which can be used in apps and games. Click on advanced search, then click the Licenses dropdown and check ONLY the boxes for Public Domain and Custom Free. When you find the image you’re looking for, be sure to follow the search result back to the original site and read the license to make sure it can be used in your application.
- Soundjay – Hundreds of sound effects that are licensed for use in apps and games. Most (if not all) of these sound effects should play as-is on Windows Phone. You can use a tool like Audacity to convert any sounds that don’t play into ones that do.
- Freesound – Thousands of free sound effects. Carefully check the license for each sound effect because not all sound effects can be used in commercial applications. Some sound effects may also require you to give attribution (credit) to the author in your application. Not all sound effects on this site can be played on Windows Phone. You can use a tool like Audacity to convert sounds that don’t play into ones that do.
- Incompetech – Hundreds of high quality songs available for use in apps and games. They’re even organized by genre, "feel" and keyword. Many of these songs require attribution (listing in credits) or can be purchased for royalty-free use.
- FreePD – Another great resource for finding free music in the public domain. Their FAQ states that all of the songs listed are available for use without attribution. Double-check that the page shows "CC Zero" at the bottom.
- Share Data Across Pages – How to share data between two or more pages in an application.
- The Metro Developer Show – Hands down the best podcast for Windows developers with excellent coverage on Windows Phone.