CRM Online Helps Illinois Improve Criminal Justice System; Starter Kit for Windows Phone 8

Dynamics CRM Online adds iPad, Yammer support. "Offender-360" cloud-based criminal justice project built using CRM Online. Texas DIR adopt Office 365; Xbox 360 top console in Jan. Visual Studio 3D Starter Kit for Windows Phone 8.

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Upate 03/01: Microsoft pushed an optional product update to Dynamics CRM Online, that adds both iPad and Yammer social enterprise networking support.

"We've designed this feature for sales representatives who need to get work done from the road, while they're on sales calls. We've eliminated popup windows from the user interface and made it simpler to use with the touch screen. You'll log in to the online application through the web browser from the iPad as you would from a laptop or desktop. You'll be able to access most functionality from the iPad, with a few exceptions," Microsoft stated.

To use Yammer, Dynamics CRM Online customers will need a Yammer Enterprise account. As Microsoft officials warn users, "installing Yammer is permanent. You will not be able to replace it with (Dyanmics CRM's) Activity Feeds later." Yammer and Activity Feeds cannot be used simultaneously.

Most of the commands that were available in the ribbon at the top of the screen have been moved to the command bar at the bottom of the screen. Here is what is change in this update:

  • "You will be able to edit records individually, but you won't be able to edit them in bulk
  • You can't re-size a chart, but you can maximize and minimize it
  • To create new records, click the select the entity name from the left navigation pane and touch +
  • To find the options you want on a given control, instead of hovering and waiting for a popup, tap it, and select from the list that appears
  • To access Help, choose the question mark icon, and topics will appear in a new tab,” informs Microsoft.

Illinois Department of Corrections and Microsoft announced the successful implementation of a cloud-based criminal justice information system dubbed "Offender-360."

Built on Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, the solution directly supports legislation signed by Gov. Pat Quinn that aims to improve Illinois public safety and criminal justice for the future. Check out the press release for more on this story.

"With guidance from Tribridge, 2012 Microsoft Dynamics State and Local Government Partner of the Year, the Illinois DOC was able to configure, develop and deploy the robust and flexible architecture of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online through trained and certified union members, significantly reducing the Offender-360 solution cost and deployment timeframe," Microsoft stated in the press release.

In other news, the Texas Department of Information Resources adoptsOffice 365 for more than 100,000 employees in the largest state-wide deployment of email and collaboration services in the U.S.

xbox 360 sold 281l units in u.s. in jan 2013

Update 02/16: Microsoft is holding a virtual launch event of the Office 365 Home Preminum on February 27th. In a very brief post, Kirk Gregersen, Office 365 general manager explains: "Virtual Launch Event on Wednesday, Feb. 27" to "celebrate the availability of a major new release coming to Office 365 for businesses".

Microsoft also announced today that Xbox 360 for the 25th consecutive month stays top with 281,000 units sold in January in the U.S.

"Consumers spent over $338 million in January on Xbox games, consoles and accessories," reports Microsoft quoting NPD. Here are the highlight from the report:

  • "Holding 44 percent share of current-generation console sales, Xbox 360 sold 281,000 units in January, maintaining the number-one console spot in the U.S. (Source: NPD Group, January 2013)
  • Total retail spend on the Xbox 360 platform in January (hardware, software and accessories) reached $338 million, the most for any console in the U.S. (Source: NPD Group, January 2013)
  • During the month of January, Xbox 360 held five of the top 10 console game titles including: "Far Cry 3," "NBA 2K13" "Call of Duty: Black Ops II" "Madden NFL13" and "Halo 4." (Source: NPD Group, January 2013)," informs Microsoft citing NPD report.

Finally, the company has now released Visual Studio 3D Starter Kit for Windows Phone 8 (or Starter Kit), taking Visual Studio graphics tools and the templates to the next level with a simple, yet complete application.

"The Starter Kit includes VS3DStarter library, a header file that contains a bunch of useful code to reduce the amount of time it takes to get a working 3D application. This library includes a Mesh loader to load the .cmo files generated by the Mesh content pipeline. The Mesh loader also has examples of loading shaders and and textures. The Camera class included in this library is a basic 3D camera which should suffice for basic applications," Microsoft blogged.

"Starter Kit also includes an example of using a XAML overlay in a DirectX application (the scoreboard at the top of the screen). One of the 3D models includes bone animation, so you'll find a library for that as well in the Animation.h file," added Microsoft.

The Starter Kit ships as source code, you can get it here, or if you're using one of the Visual Studio Express 2012 products, you can find platform specific versions of the Starter Kit for Windows 8 here, and for Windows Phone 8 here.

visual studio 3d starter kit for windows phone 8