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Apps for Office and SharePoint Developer Contest; Build Apps on Windows Azure and Win $10,000, Xbox + Kinect Bundle in Prize

Apps for Office and SharePoint Developer Contest: Build Cloud Apps on Windows Azure

With Office 2013 Cutomer Preview and the Office Store now availabe–Microsoft just announced a new developer contest “Apps for Office and SharePoint Developer Contest.”

“If you live in the US, UK, Canada, Australia or India, build and submit your app and you could win big prizes in the Apps for Office and SharePoint Developer Contest just announced on the Apps for Office and SharePoint Blog,” Microsoft announced.

The prizes to be won include–a $10,000 grand prize to Xbox + Kinect bundles. “Key app winners will also be featured on the Office Store,” Microsoft stated.

For official rules and how you can participate check here.

For more information on how you can build your apps using any language, tool or framework, visit the Windows Azure Developer Center.

For those who want to build app(s) using the new Microsoft Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2012 Preview, check the following steps on how to get started building apps in the cloud using Visual Studio that will be hosted in Office 365 and Windows Azure Web Sites.

For details, read this “Building Apps With Visual Studio and Windows Azure” post.

First up configure your environment:

  1. Install Visual Studio 2012. Office and SharePoint 2013 development are supported on the release candidate and with the upcoming RTM version of the product. You can use the Professional, Premium or Ultimate versions.
  2. Install the Microsoft Office Developer Tools for Visual Studio 2012 – Preview via the Web Platform Installer. It will automatically update your Visual Studio and download any other pre-requisites that are needed for writing apps for Office and SharePoint.
  3. Get an Office 365 Developer Site. Visit the dev.office.com and click Sign up to get your site.

Creating a Cloud-Hosted App Project

Get started by creating a new project in Visual Studio. When you open the New Project dialog box, notice that it’s updated to combine the Office and SharePoint templates in a single convenient location. To create your app, choose the “App for SharePoint 2013” template, and give it an appropriate name.

Debugging the app

  1. Open the Default.aspx.cs file, and set a breakpoint on the first line of the Page_Load method.
  2. Hit F5 to deploy your app to the Office 365 Developer site.
  3. Once it is installed, click the Trust It button to provide your app with access to basic information about your site.
  4. On the Site Contents page, find your app, and click the icon to open its start page.

Deploying the app

In most cases, debugging against your local environment is all that is required. For autohosted apps, use the Deploy command on the context menu for the app project as a convenient way to run your app in Windows Azure Web Sites.

To start exploring more complex apps and the possibilities of the new app model:

  1. Open the New Project dialog box.
  2. Click the Online tab in the leftmost column.
  3. Click the Samples node in the tree view.
  4. In the Search box in the upper-right hand, corner type “Office 2013” or “SharePoint 2013” to find a list of dozens of samples ready to be installed into Visual Studio.

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