So last week Xamarin developer evangelist James Montemagno was in Phoenix giving several presentations. Two of which I attended, the first one I went to was at the user group I started in the Northwest Phoenix Valley, NWVDNUG (Northwest Valley .Net User Group) when he gave an overview of Xamarin and it’s capabilities. Then a few days later, on Saturday I went to a workshop arranged by Joe Guadagno which he went deeper into the Xamarin tools, and walked through some of the newest functionality they recently introduced, Xamarin Forms.
I have been learning Xamarin development the past few months, and even submitted my first iOs app done using C# and Xamarin (which did get approved and is in the app store – it isn’t the best looking app as I am a programmer and not a designer). And within a few days (as I recall) of that submission Xamarin announced version 3 and Xamarin Forms. From the announcement it seemed that Xamarin Forms would have been very useful, as well as some of the newer design tools introduced in version 3, as I struggled with some of the Xcode tools trying to get the colors set for the app.
At that workshop, James walked all the attendees through our first Xamarin Forms app. I really liked the ease of use in creating cross platform USER INTERFACES (yes the UI) in C# code, or even using XAML to build the screens to be used across the various platforms. These screens use custom controls that are abstractions of native controls used on the various platforms. Read more about Xamarin Forms over at their site.
Well, originally I started this post to talk about my experience since that work shop, redoing my iOs app using Xamarin Forms, and at the same time creating my first Android app, and also replacing the old WP7/8 app I had created in the past. All these apps will have feature parity with each other and look similar but not exactly the same thanks to Xamarin. Each platform will use native controls and paradigms for the respective platforms while I write the User Interface just one time.
But since I got kind of long winded on this background post, I will hold off on the details of my journey on this trek for future posts. Well I might write one or two tonight, but schedule them to post in the future. Or I might go back to coding, as it’s such fun to so rapidly iterate over the screens and see them on various emulators.
Hope you come back to read future posts in this “series”