Listening to PodCasts on Windows Phone

Using the Zune Software it is easy to listen to PodCasts on the Windows Phone. If you commute or have to wait regularly, you miss a lot when you don’t plug in your earplugs or connect your Windows Phone to your Car Stereo. There are many PodCasts and there is a lot to learn.

PodCastsInZune

For European Listeners there are some hickups: the Zune is officially not available in Europe, so PodCasts exclusively for Zune are restricted for use outside the USA. You can experience that by using the Zune links that are on the official homepages of the PodCasts. I’ve had a likewise experience when I subscribe from within the PodCast player in Windows Phone, showing a “cannot play this PodCast” message instead of playing it.

NotAvailableInYourRegion

To avoid this problem enter the RSS feed URL of a PodCast in the Subscribe dialog that appears when you click the Add a PodCast button at the bottom left of the Zune PodCast screen. When the PodCast episodes list has loaded, drag interesting episodes to you Windows Phone.

When you hit the Series Settings button on the right of the screen next to the episodes list, you can determine how podcasts are downloaded and synched to your phone:

PodCastsSeriesSettings

The Windows Phone standard PodCast player is actually very nice and complete, but if you want more or other features you can search the MarketPlace for other PodCast Players. Screenshots below illustrate the path to playing a episode from .NET Rocks!:

Screen Capture (9) Screen Capture (11) Screen Capture (10) 

Screen Capture (12) Screen Capture (6) Screen Capture (8)  

Screen Capture (7)When a PodCast is playing, you can always adjust volume or stop the show by using the volume button of you phone. It will place the player controls over any screen that is currently showing, even the startup screen:

 

 

 

 

    

It is hard, if not impossible to find the URLs back for the feeds once you are subscribed. Feeds I’m listening to are:

Dot NET Rocks!: http://www.pwop.com/feed.aspx?show=dotnetrocks
The Tablet Show: http://www.pwop.com/feed.aspx?show=thetabletshow
Deep Fried Bytes: http://feeds.feedburner.com/deepfriedbytes
DotNed PotCasts: http://www.dotned.nl/podcasts/podcasts.xml
HanselMinutes: http://feeds.feedburner.com/HanselminutesCompleteMP3
Yet Another Podcast: http://feeds.feedburner.com/JesseLibertyYapcast
MacWorld: http://www.macworld.com/weblogs/mwpodcast.rss
Windows Phone Dev PodCast: http://feeds.feedburner.com/WindowsPhoneDevPodcast Windows Weekly: http://leoville.tv/podcasts/ww.xml

Njoy!

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How to stop a WPF Window from moving using Touch by removing the ManipulationBoundaryFeedback

When using Touch in WPF it is possible to scroll lists. It’s just that the Window is moving to give Feedback when you are reaching the end of the list. This is not always what you want. To make your application ignore this behavior you can mark the ManipulationBoundaryFeedback event handled:

<Grid :Name="LayoutRoot" 
    ManipulationBoundaryFeedback="ManipulationBoundaryFeedbackHandler">

<DataGrid
    ScrollViewer.CanContentScroll ="False"
    ScrollViewer.PanningMode="VerticalOnly"
    ScrollViewer.PanningRatio="2"
    ScrollViewer.PanningDeceleration="1000"
    ScrollViewer.VerticalScrollBarVisibility="Hidden">
        …
</DataGrid>

.. your application is here…

</Grid>

private void ManipulationBoundaryFeedbackHandler
    (object sender, ManipulationBoundaryFeedbackEventArgs e)
{
    e.Handled = true;
}

The event is bubbling only, so if you place the event handler on your LayoutRoot it should work for all lists.

Actually there is also a System settings in the Panning Tab in the Pen and Touch settings dialog. This is a setting the end users can choose.

Njoy!

Nooks and Crannies of Expression Blend: Artboard Objects List

I can’t even find this one in the Keyboard Shortcut list provided in the User Guide of Expression Blend, so I made up a name for it: The Artboard Objects List:

ArtboardObject List

Known from several drawing programs, this list shows the objects under the mouse cursor when you hold Ctrl and Click the Right Mouse Button. It highlights the currently selected object and lists all other objects overlapping each other from the topmost at the top of the list to the one at the bottom on the bottom of the list. Notice that the order of this list is opposite to the default order in de Objects and Timeline Panel (when you have not changed the order of the panel using the Sort by Z-order option at the bottom left of that panel). Actually, this order is logical for what it shows: the stack of objects in the Artboard under your mouse cursor.

Notice also the option to Pin or UnPin the Active Container. This makes is easier to insert newly created objects in a container like the RegularPolygon Shape in the Grid here inside the RadioButton…

Njoy!