An Interview with WP7 Indie Developer Barranger Ridler

1)Have you developed Apps for any other platforms before?If Yes What are they?

I’ve been developing for about 15 years now on various platforms.  Most of my work has been on the server side in both Java and C# while in the mobile space I’ve been working on line of business applications using Windows Mobile 6.5 for the last two or so years.

2)Why did you choose WP7 as a platform of your choice?

The main reason for choosing WP7 has been the whole experience as a developer.  While I’m sure there are some who will disagree (and as such, be wrong 🙂 ) but Visual Studio is by far the best IDE going.  Add to that the available controls and design guidelines, as well as just the sheer slickness of the platform, and there wasn’t ever really any choice.

3)Which one do you think as the single most feature you liked in WP7?

Silverlight as a whole.  Going in, I never really had any experience with Silverlight, and mostly passed it off as a flash clone.  Having built a few flash sites about a decade ago, I had absolutely no interest in anything of the sort (yeah, I know, could I be any more close minded? 🙂 ).  But being at Mix10 and having the ability to download the SDK for free and try it out, I quickly realized just how wrong I was, they’ve taken the ability to quickly put something together and animate it in minutes, but then added on a really programming language behind it.

4)Are you satisfied with WP7 Platform development tools?

For the most part yes.  Having to piece together some of the controls that make the user experience (like the Panorama and Pivot controls) from codeplex have been a pain, but at the same time it’s somewhat understandable considering we’re still two to three months away.

5)What are the Apps you are developing now in WP7?

I currently have three applications in the pipeline, the one that I’ve shown off on my blog (4MKMobile.com) currently called Phone Tree that allows for soon to be parents to easily update there friends and family effortlessly directly from their phone.  It’s using the Twilio API to take the couple’s updates and send the either through SMS or using Text-to-Speech over a phone line.

The other two are navigation apps that will find the closest coffee shops (Tim Horton’s for those of us in Canada and Starbucks for the rest of the world) as well as give them directions on how to get there.

6)In what way Microsoft can improve their WP7 or What does WP7 lacks from?

While I’m sure most people would say multi-tasking, I’m not so sure that’s something I really need.  Personally I would be happy if they allowed third party apps the same features that first party apps get.  Access to both still and motion cameras would be nice, being able to integrate into the Office Hub would probably be huge background audio for site specific apps would be nice to play their podcasts.

7)Future Plans of you?

I’m really hoping that Microsoft will soon be releasing a WP7 specific Bing maps control as I have quite a few ideas for mapping functionality.

8)Any other things you want to share with the community?

Just for people to keep an open mind about WP7 till you have it in your hands, once you see the speed of this thing, you’ll truly be amazed.

Thanks Ridler for sharing your thoughts with us.Happy WP7 coding..

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