Software Development

.NET Core

What is .Net core and why it’s better?

What is .Net core?

The .Net core is basically an addition to the already very popular .NET framework. It extends the use ability of .Net framework by allowing several new tweaks, which weren’t there before on .NET platform. Let’s have a look how .Net core is different and more compatible compared to other similar framework’s.

 A brief history:

Microsoft has been working a lot to make .net more enhance and user accessible. There .NET framework was one favorite tool for many developers as they could code in various programming languages including C, C++ and python. Due to this .Net became very popular and common among programmers. Over the time, Microsoft kept supporting .net platform but this time they wanted to introduce some new add ons which could make it even more convenient so, they came up with .Net core framework.

Benefits of .Net core and how is it better?

As mentioned earlier, .Net core brings a new updated package for its users. Let’s take a look how convenient this new package is.

1: Open source:

On .Net framework users weren’t unable to share the code on all the major platforms. This became an issue especially for Mac users. The .Net core runtime will be shared by the open source community which in collaboration with .Net will enhance the overall frame work. Then developers can share it on Mac and Linux without any issues. This is not only helpful for current .net users but will also facilitate new comers. However, initially it’s only available for windows but after some time programmers would be able to share the code on all major plat forms.

2: More secure than ever:

.Net core can be shipped as a private .Net core version. Now what does this mean? It means that you can ship a private version of .Net framework for your own set of applications.

This sounds very interesting because not only it will secure your .Net framework but will also strengthen the versatility of this framework.

3: Cross platform:

As stated earlier the new .net core framework will allow the programmers to access it on all three major platforms including Windows, Mac and Linux. So, no need to stick with Windows to access the latest .Net framework.

Conclusion:

The new and enhanced .net core framework seems the best coding tool at the moment. Microsoft has finally resolved the compatibility issue as Net can be access on all three major operating systems. There are several other enhancements too. It’s great to see that how Microsoft has made an already very popular framework even better and convenient. It will definitely attract a lot of new users too.

All in all .Net core framework seems quite promising for the near future.

If you are interested in learning more about .NET Core, please contact us.

wordpress

Simple Stерѕ tо Create a Wеbѕіtе Uѕіng WordPress

Stаrt-uр businesses and ѕmаll buѕіnеѕѕеѕ can еxtеnd thеіr рrеѕеnсе оntо thе Internet with a ѕіmрlе Website thаt іѕ еаѕу to сrеаtе and manage. A bаѕіс Wеbѕіtе juѕt nееdѕ a fеw pages: the hоmе раgе, a ѕесtіоn providing bасkgrоund information оn thе соmраnу, a раgе fоr the соmраnу’ѕ рrоduсt offerings, a соntасt раgе, and a ѕесtіоn fоr роѕtіng blоgѕ and rеlеvаnt nеwѕ. Thіѕ type оf Wеbѕіtе is еаѕу tо create аnd dеѕіgn using WоrdPrеѕѕ.

Below are ѕоmе ѕіmрlе ѕtерѕ you саn follow tо dеvеlор your start-up Wеbѕіtе:

1. Thе first requirement to buіldіng уоur Wеbѕіtе is to оbtаіn a Web hоѕtіng service. Choose a Web hоѕt that is compatible with MуSQL databases аnd PHP. Onсе уоu hаvе this, dоwnlоаd thе WоrdPrеѕѕ ѕоurсе code. Sоmе Wеb hоѕtѕ оffеr аutоmаtіс іnѕtаllаtіоn оf WordPress. If уоur Wеb hоѕt оffеrѕ that ѕеrvісе, gо аhеаd аnd tаkе advantage оf it. If you prefer tо do іt mаnuаllу, you nееd tо сrеаtе a MySQL dаtаbаѕе оn your server. Take note of thе ѕеrvеr fоldеr оf уоur Wеbѕіtе so you knоw the URL to іnрut fоr unzірріng thе WоrdPrеѕѕ source соdе. Sее tо іt thаt you hаvе grаntеd уоurѕеlf permission to rеаd, wrіtе аnd edit your WordPress files. On your brоwѕеr, go tо your Wеbѕіtе’ѕ URL аnd іnѕtаll WordPress. Aftеr installation has been completed, уоu wіll be gіvеn an аdmіnіѕtrаtоr’ѕ раѕѕwоrd for уоur lоgіn.

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2. Once уоu login tо уоur WоrdPrеѕѕ ассоunt, уоu can сhаngе уоur раѕѕwоrd to ѕоmеthіng thаt you can еаѕіlу remember. Dоwnlоаd your сhоѕеn WordPress theme. Tо асtіvаtе thе theme, gо to thе control раnеl оf WоrdPrеѕѕ аnd click оn thе арреаrаnсе tаb оn the left роrtіоn оf thе соntrоl раnеl.

3. Stаrt adding уоur Wеbѕіtе pages bу clicking оn thе ѕесtіоn for pages. You саn сlісk оn five pages to соvеr fоr your hоmераgе, about the соmраnу раgе, рrоduсtѕ, blоgѕ and nеwѕ, аnd соntасt information page.

4. Lооk fоr thе settings lіnk аnd choose thе ѕub-ѕесtіоn for ‘rеаdіng.’Choose the ‘ѕtаtіс’ орtіоn for your front раgе. You wіll bе gіvеn a drop dоwn list fоr сhооѕіng your type of home page. Pісk оut the page thаt уоu аrе rеѕеrvіng fоr уоur blоgѕ and news раgе. Sаvе аll оf your settings.

5. Frоm hеrе you can ѕіmрlу uрlоаd thе different content уоu wаnt to арреаr оn еасh оf уоur Wеb раgеѕ. However, іf уоu wаnt tо сuѕtоmіzе thе look оf thе dеfаult thеmе, уоu mау сору thе HTML/CSS codes of your рrеfеrrеd ѕіtе’ѕ lауоut. Access уоur Website within уоur рrеfеrrеd HTML еdіtоr, ѕuсh аѕ Drеаmwеаvеr or TеxtMаtе. Lооk fоr thе theme fоldеr and ассеѕѕ thе style sheet wіthіn that fоldеr. Yоu hаvе ѕеvеrаl орtіоnѕ for сuѕtоmіzіng the ѕtуlе ѕhееt. Yоu can mаkе ѕmаll alterations tо mееt уоur design ѕресіfісаtіоnѕ. If уоu аlrеаdу have a ѕеt style ѕhееt, уоu can juѕt сору its соntеntѕ. The lаѕt option wоuld bе tо соmbіnе thе dеfаult style ѕhееt wіth your own customized ѕtуlе sheet by including іt in thе header.php fіlе.

6. WоrdPrеѕѕ has the сараbіlіtу оf рuttіng together dіffеrеnt рhр fіlеѕ. Yоu wіll have a рhр fіlе fоr your hеаdеr, sidebar, fооtеr, and for the central part оf уоur раgе.

Thе bеѕt wау to learn the process оf сrеаtіng уоur Website is to actually trу it!

If you are interested in learning more about how to install/setup wordpress, please contact us.

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scrum

Defining Your Software Development Methodology When Outsourcing

A company’s software development methodology covers every fundamental ground rule defining the process used to create your software. This includes control over the source code, testing, the criteria for release, and of course where the responsibility for this procedure lies.

Individual programmers’ productivity has increased dramatically thanks to interactive development environments (IDEs), and with efficient new methodologies such as agile software development, the efficiency of programming teams has also been greatly improved. While of course different companies will have vastly different needs – what works for you works for you, regardless of the name it is given or the definition it falls under. We recommend agile software development.

Agile software development

In our experience, self-organised teams coordinating and collaborating to organically evolve a product-specific methodology is an ideal solution for most software development needs.

It is essential, of course, for your outsourced team to know what you want, but this will be par for the course if your chosen outsourced agile team is up to scratch, and the main benefit of that team will be their focus on continual improvements to your software, allowing you to track the development and keep the project on the course you want it to be on through repeating builds and releases. What you must ensure is that communication channels remain open at all times. Discussion, collaboration and cross-functionality will ensure you are all on the same page.

Define your management structure

The key to success in this field is effective control of your in-house engineering team. They should be in charge of management, not coding. Decide who in your management hierarchy is accountable for the daily operations of the outsourced team. That person needs to be granted the authority to freely manage your in-house engineers as well as the offshore ones. They can then keep the outsourced coders on a defined path. It will be your experienced employees’ knowledge and perspective that will make your software development a success. Remember, outsourcing is a hugely successful way of improving efficiency, not of buying vision.

If you are interested in learning more about how to successfully implement agile methodologies when outsourcing, please contact us.

Costa Rica Software Outsourcing

Successfully outsourcing software development in Costa Rica

Outsourcing software development in Costa Rica is now a normal practice in the technology industry, and it’s not just about lowering costs – outsourcing gives companies global access to highly qualified developers, while modern ways of working ensure quality and timeliness are still guaranteed.

Realizing the benefits

One of the obvious reasons for outsourcing software development is the price – differing costs of living mean a developer in Latin America will cost much less to hire than one in the US.

But as well as lowering costs, one of the main motivations for businesses to outsource software development is discovering professionals with the right skill set.

Technology is a global industry, and the ongoing tech boom taking place in countries like Costa Rica has created a pool of high-quality talent working for established developers to produce software for leading, multinational technology companies like IBM, Microsoft and Apple.

Outsourcing software development also saves time, as companies can confidently outsource aspects of a project that would normally require hiring more home staff, or be put off until later.

Overcoming challenges

Handing over an important part of a business to a company on another continent may sound risky, but qualified professionals using proven business practices can easily overcome any challenges.

For example, the rapid development of communication technology may have made outsourcing software development feasible, but there is more to communication than conference calling.

Teamwork and testing on the side of the software developers are vital to ensure meaningful, timely feedback and provide quality assurance.

Companies in Costa Rica like FusionHit use an agile software development approach, where face-to-face collaboration, ongoing testing and daily meetings between team members put communication and feedback at the heart of project management.

Cultural differences can sometimes cause concern, as countries often have different work cultures and differing expectations of employees.

That’s why so many companies in the US choose to outsource software development to Costa Rica, where US business practices are the norm, the time never differs by more than an hour or two, and there are experienced developers with a proven record of delivering success for American companies.

Analyst firm Gartner made Costa Rica one of eight Latin American countries in its top 30 countries for outsourcing services.

Outsourcing software development can bring real benefits, beyond a mere cutting of costs. Instead, it means being able to find the right developer for the best price, wherever in the world they may be.

Would you like more information on how to outsource software development from Costa Rica, please contact us.

agile

How to implement scrum in 5 easy steps

Let the Scrum team revolutionize your development management.

Scrum is an agile software solution that provides a flexible, holistic framework that leverages teamwork in order to reach common development goals, whilst offering the ability to make changes and respond to customer needs at any point in the process. But how do you implement Scrum into your work flow? Here are five easy steps to show you how:

1. Backlogs

This is perhaps the most important step in the process, so read carefully!

Before any project begins, you need to create a product backlog. This is essentially a list of the goals that need to be achieved in order to create a finished or near-finished product. List them in order of priority.

The Scrum Master (the person in charge of implementing Scrum and creating the Scrum team – you!) should nominate one person to be the head of the product, also known as the product owner, who will oversee the product backlog as their first action.

Include anything and everything: bug fixes, patches, risks. Just make sure they are focused on the finished product.

2. Plan your Sprint

The Sprint is the time period in which tasks have to be completed and all goals achieved, and is the essence of Scrum. Select some or all of your important product backlog goals and discuss them with the entire team; everyone in the Scrum team should know the overall goals of the project and what you hope to achieve.

Duration is important; 2 week is recommended, but you will need to tailor the Sprint to suit each individual product. This will also affect your budget, so it needs to be considered early on in the process.

When first implementing a Sprint, it’s best to overestimate how much time you will need; you can’t run before you can walk!

3. Delegate tasks

So, you’ve decided what you want to achieve and in what time frame you want to achieve it; how do you split up the tasks?

The beauty of agile software like Scrum is that the linear approach to development is no longer necessary, and changes in one area of development need not affect all the others.

It will take some time to organise the Sprint, so schedule a few workshops so that the whole Scrum team can contribute to the discussion. An open-plan, collaborative work space will aid the process; bring in some big whiteboards and hold regular meetings to lay the foundation for a smooth running Sprint.

Now it’s time to break down the product backlog. How far you break each component down is really up to you, but smaller tasks increase the efficiency of the Sprint by keeping individual tasks manageable. Then, once you’re ready…

4. SPRINT!

The duration of your Sprint is fixed – changing it will compromise the project. The essence of Sprint relies in the control and autonomy of individual groups, intervening will compromise the project. Individual groups still need to be able to collaborate, so ensure they can do this.

Hold daily meetings to make sure everyone is informed of the latest developments. If all the planning ahead of this stage has been done correctly, the Sprint shouldn’t actually be that taxing for the Scrum Master. The only time for heavy-handedness is when making sure the Sprint duration is honored!

5. Review

At the end of the Sprint, hold a Sprint review. Again, everyone should be involved. This gives the Scrum Master the chance to present the product as a finished or near-finished article. It will allow for feedback and the planning of any changes that need to be made.

As important is a review of the Scrum team and Sprint itself; make sure to point out positives, but also ensure that you take on board any feedback or comments that could help improve your Sprint.

The implementation of Scrum provides fantastic results; look into optimizing your development now! Contact Us!

development_team

How to build a dedicated development team

Creating great software starts with great people, but finding them is the tricky part. Given the hotly competitive nature of the tech sector, it’s more essential than ever to form a highly skilled team to develop incredible software – and one whose members get on with each other so there’s no disrupting friction. Here are some ways you can build a dedicated software team:

In deciding who to hire for a dedicated development team, you may be tempted to go for the reliable “team player” – that all-rounder who gets on with everyone and works not as an individual but together, with the aim of reaching the end goal in software development. That’s all well and good, but team players can have their downfalls too. Many like to play it safe and may not be overly creative or inventive; traits you really need for great programs.

By all means, keep the concept of team players in mind – you certainly want everyone to have your company’s goals and ambitions in mind, after all – but don’t be overly reliant on this trait as a guiding factor in deciding who to take on. Creating software is all about translating new ideas into great programs, so consider outsourcing to nearshore software developers, for instance – experts in nearby countries who will be able to help create what you need.

Such people contributing to a software development team can often give valuable input from a different perspective, looking at the project from afar and coming up with ingenious solutions that will give the final product an edge in the marketplace. It could also have the advantage of fostering greater creativity and debate among other team members, and enhancing the software’s development overall.

Don’t forget about the old hands during your selection process, though. Any team will be comprised of all kinds of people, with differing attitudes and temperaments. While some relatively green members might be prone to problematic outbursts or general unhelpful behaviour – because, for instance, they don’t particularly like or agree with a certain proposal or direction and are unable to keep themselves in check – having seasoned industry personnel on board can provide a concrete base as the project moves forward.

You might also want to consider elite candidates for your software development team. These are the people at the top of their game – the leading minds in the industry – so naturally you’re going to want some in your squad. If you’re having problems finding any in your country, again you might want to outsource to nearshore developers; a practice many firms are now adopting. It’s an affordable way to get the top-level expertise you need to develop high-performance software.

When you have your team selected and formed, it’s then a matter of management. You want the members working well together, and to prevent disruptions from happening. Problems will inevitably arise, however – especially with creative minds, which run the risk of clashing – and when they do, don’t be afraid to step in and mediate so that all sides to an argument are heard and a mutually acceptable solution is worked out.

Always ensure you give your team ample support along the way, so that stresses are relived and deadlines met – and that you end up with a totally brilliant software product.

Contact Us, to learn how we could help you to setup a dedicated team for your needs.

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.NET coming to Mac and Linux

Microsoft’s .NET and Visual Studio development tools will be available for Mac OS and Linux, the company announced, as it continues to push forward with its open source, cloud-based and cross platform strategy.

This is not the only surprise found within the Visual Studio 2015 release; an Android emulator is also provided as part of the development and Microsoft has also made Visual Studio 2013 more or less free to use.

This release is quite a strategy change for Microsoft and will give developers a way to make software not just for the Windows environment, but also Android, iOS, Linux and Mac OS X.

But is this ethos change a good thing for Microsoft? Let’s look at the new features on offer first:

1. Multiple platforms

Microsoft plans to move its server-side .NET runtime so that it runs across Linux, Mac and, of course, Windows. This, in turn, means that developers can build .NET 5.0 applications that can be deployed and run on Linux and/or Mac environments.

According to officials, Microsoft is providing Mac compatibility mainly to offer a development environment choice, and is expecting most .NET developers to still deploy their apps within the Linux and Windows environment.

However, Microsoft’s next generation of web development framework has already been shown running on both Linux and OS X.

2. Visual Studio 2013 – for free

Microsoft will release on a new Community version of Visual Studio 2013. This full-featured release will be free to individual developers, small businesses and anyone not making enterprise applications.

Unlike previous and free Express Visual Studio versions, this Community release will also support Visual Studio extensions and provide access to a range of add ons.

3. Into the cloud

Microsoft also announced .NET 2015 and Visual Studio 2015 previews for existing developers, which gives the opportunity for more cloud-based development and added support for Android, iOS and Windows, where developers can use C#, C++ HTML or JavaScript to produce apps.

In April 2014, Microsoft shared its plans to move a number of its developer technologies into the open source arena. This included ASP.NET, the .NET Micro Framework, the Roslyn .NET compiler platform, .NET Rx and the C# and VB programming languages. According to Microsoft, these technologies will be available through a newly created .NET Foundation.

With this latest announcement, the company is adding more bits of .NET to its open source list, including the .NET Common Language Runtime (CLR), garbage collector, the just-in-time compiler and Base Class libraries. Microsoft also pledged to work with partner Xamarin, which made .NET available on other platforms, to integrate the Mono runtime work.

4. The Android emulator

Microsoft’s Android emulator is a bit of a let down and does not really put itself in direct competition with Android Studio and Eclipse.

The sort of Android development that you can achieve using Visual Studio is limited to Xamarin’s libraries and C# or Cordova-based HTML and JavaScript apps. Additionally, Visual Studio 2015 does not let you work with standard Java-based Android apps.

5. Automated testing

There are a plethora of new features available with this release, but one of the most interesting is an automated release management pipeline hosted on Azure.

This feature also developers to automatically build apps by deploying onto a development or test environment on Azure. What is more, testing can be automated as part of the build process with unit tests based on Microsoft’s PEX project.

Conclusion

Microsoft’s move into allowing developers build applications that run on platforms including Android, iOS and Linux is an interesting development.

Microsoft’s intention is clearly to make its Azure cloud platform more competitive and future-proof its technology by adopting this more flexible approach.

It’s not just .NET that’s moving into the cloud. This announcement marks another move by Microsoft to make its technologies available across a wide variety of platforms. This has been a theme spear-headed by CEO Satya Nadella when he began earlier this year – to prioritise cloud and mobile technologies ahead of its existing Office and Windows businesses.

S. Somasegar, corporate vice president of the Developer Division at Microsoft, said: “With these releases, we are broadly opening up access to our industry leading platform and tools to every developer building any application in today’s mobile-first, cloud-first world.”

Microsoft .NET was released more than decade ago, at a time when Windows was the dominant force in the computing world. But, as smart-phones, tablets and cloud computing have gained momentum, Microsoft’s core business model has been rocked to its core.

This, in turn, signals that the release is a move from Microsoft to becoming a company that is more about Azure, and less about Windows.

Somasegar added: “Visual Studio 2015 is the most deeply cloud-aware IDE we’ve ever built, from Azure and Visual Studio Online integration, to cloud application development.”

Microsoft’s future destination may well lie beyond Windows and, by giving developers these cross-platform tools, it’s good to know they will be welcomed on the journey.

Contact Us, to learn more about new Microsoft Technologies.

asp-net-mvc-5

ASP.NET MVC 5 – is it worth the trouble of an upgrade?

Microsoft’s ASP.NET MVC 5 promises a number of tantalising new features over its predecessors. These include: attribute-based routing, filter overrides, native support of Twitter’s Bootstrap code for CSS and HTML5 enabled sites, simple integration to work across multiple frameworks and easier authentication.

Let’s go through the enhancements and improvements included in the update in a little more detail.

Attribute-based Routing

One of the most exciting new features of Microsoft’s MVC 5 is a new routing feature called attribute-based routing.

The earlier style of routing used in previous versions, called convention-based routing, can leave developers scratching their heads trying to understand the application’s relationships as the routes are separated from the controllers they apply to. However, as its name suggests, attribute-based routing uses attributes to define routes and gives developers more control over the URIs in the web application.

Filter Overrides

This snazzy new feature does away with one of a Visual Studio developer’s biggest headaches. Filter Overrides allow a developer to replace or completely clear certain filter types that are created at higher scopes in one fell swoop.

Now if a developer wants to override a global action filter in one of the action method’s then they just need to apply the “OverrideActionFilters” attribute. In previous versions of .NET MVC, in order to override a global action filter or a global controller filter, a developer had to painstakingly apply a filter for each action and controller, one by one. Filter Overrides do way with this completely.

Bootstrap

Twitter Bootstrap has been added to Visual Studio 2013 as the default user interface framework for an MVC application.

Bootstrap is a clever beast which is comprised of a free collection of HTML and CSS design templates developed over at Twitter. It can easily be downloaded here http://getbootstrap.com and the framework is increasingly popular with software developers as it cuts down on development time and produces a set of clear and consistently designed websites.

The framework means developers can rapidly design form elements, navigation bars, tables, buttons and other generic elements needed for a responsive user interface. All without having to rehash the same code used across multiple sites, which just reinvents the wheel and wastes precious development time.

Bootstrap also promotes responsive website design as the page’s layout will automatically adjust with the browser’s width. In other words, Bootstrap optimises the page for mobile browsing, which is a key piece of design functionality for any modern website.

Also included in the Bootstrap package is the bootstrapper.js file. This contains plenty of useful jQuery code to provide interactive plug-ins and components in a single file.

In short, the native support of the Bootstrap library gives developers a massive boost to their application’s arsenal, giving them a wider range of multi-platform HTML5 and CSS options than ever offered before.

Scaffolding

Bootstrap isn’t the only framework included in Visual Studio 2013; there is also the new Scaffolding Framework provided for ASP.NET Web Applications.

Adding Scaffolding to a project lets a developer quickly add code that interacts with data models. Using Scaffolding also reduces the amount of time to develop standard data operations in the MVC application. Any framework that reduces development time is sure to get a big thumbs up from the development community.

Improved Authentication

Microsoft has improved authentication for ASP.NET MVC 5 by including third party authentication and improving ASP.NET Identity.

An ASP.NET MVC 5 application can now be accessed by developers logging in using an external authentication provider, like Google. So developers can simply use their Gmail address and password to log in to the application, and the application only demands permissions to view their email address and basic account information.

Next up, we have ASP.NET Identity. True, this is not strictly a “new” feature, but it has been improved to give users a single sign on across frameworks such as Web Forms, MVC, Web Pages and so forth.

One ASP.NET

Another new feature is One ASP.NET, which is a unified project system for .NET software developers.

Working with multiple frameworks in a single project is made significantly easier using One ASP.NET, allowing software developers to combine Web Forms, MVC, Web API and other frameworks together in a single project.

This feature means developers no longer need to pick a single technology at the start of a project and stick with it. Instead, One ASP.NET encourages developers to use multiple ASP.NET frameworks within one project.

To conclude, ASP.NET MVC 5 is a more than worthy update as it enables developers to build dynamic websites with an emphasis on clean architecture, extensibility and test-driven development.

Contact Us, to learn more about how we could help you implement ASP.NET MVC in your website.