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Microsoft's Worldwide Hackathon for Windows in November

By - Source: Microsoft | B 17 comments

Microsoft's two-day "hackathon" will produce new Windows 8 apps for the Windows Store. Clever.

Microsoft released a short announcement on Wednesday alerting developers and students that the time is near to help stock up Windows Store with fresh new Windows 8 apps. Called WOWZAPP 2012, the event will take place on November 9 to November 11 in more than 30 locations worldwide.

"At the events, students will be provided with the resources they need to build their apps, such as Visual Studio 2012 Express for Windows 8 and a free Windows Store registration code, both available through DreamSpark," the company said. "In addition, students will be able to test their apps, and developer experts and trainers will be available to answer questions and help participants submit their apps to the Windows Store."

Students and other types of developers across countries such as India, Pakistan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Turkey, Finland, Chile and Greece will work in teams to develop apps that will be published and available for download in the Windows Store, the company said.

News of the November "hackathon" arrives after BusinessWeek wrote a report about Microsoft's New England Research & Development Center back in September. For the past two summers, Microsoft has recruited college students to write apps that will help fill the Windows Store prior to Windows 8's launch. The first batch were mere prototypes, but the recent 2012 batch actually made it into Microsoft's virtual storefront.

"Microsoft is definitely playing catch-up with respect to the global app marketplace," said David Hilal, an analyst at FBR Capital Markets, in an interview. "Their challenge is a chicken-and-egg problem. They need to get more users for their apps to entice developers, but they need better apps to attract more users."

So far Microsoft is only listing 13 North American locations for its "hackathon" event next month including Columbus (OH), Denver (CO), Edina (MN), Irvine (CA), Irving (TX), Los Angeles (CA), Malvern (PA), Redmond (WA), San Diego (CA), San Francisco (CA), St. Petersburg (FL), Sunnyvale (CA) and Tempe (AZ).

For more information about WOWZAPP 2012, head here.


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  • 4 Hide
    freggo , October 18, 2012 4:46 PM
    Sounds like a quantity over quality approach.
  • 0 Hide
    chimera201 , October 18, 2012 4:48 PM
    Clever
  • 7 Hide
    audiophillia , October 18, 2012 6:25 PM
    freggoSounds like a quantity over quality approach.

    it worked for apple.
  • Display all 17 comments.
  • -2 Hide
    bllue , October 18, 2012 6:26 PM
    Money waiting to be made. Make apps for W8 now while the store isn't plagued by crap like the Appstore and Android market are.
  • -4 Hide
    Anonymous , October 18, 2012 6:26 PM
    well who cares, win 8 is major let down
  • -3 Hide
    SirGCal , October 18, 2012 6:44 PM
    It honestly surprises me; if M$ put half as much attention into the detail and user comments of W8 instead of dumping buckets into advertising and marketing schemes, it would have gone off without a hitch. How can a company be so, for lack of a better word, stupid, even with the whole world basically screaming in their faces?!?

    It's like they are trying to save the sinking ship instead of patch the holes and just fix it... Or... Do they have some OTHER agenda, are they intentionally trying to kill the PC themselves?!?
  • 2 Hide
    ejb222 , October 18, 2012 7:03 PM
    SirGCalIt honestly surprises me; if M$ put half as much attention into the detail and user comments of W8 instead of dumping buckets into advertising and marketing schemes, it would have gone off without a hitch. How can a company be so, for lack of a better word, stupid, even with the whole world basically screaming in their faces?!?It's like they are trying to save the sinking ship instead of patch the holes and just fix it... Or... Do they have some OTHER agenda, are they intentionally trying to kill the PC themselves?!?

    SirGCal - You mean to say that you really think you are much wiser the MS? Why haven't you developed an OS? Or why not apply for a job at MS senior level to influence their decisions? I'm not saying that are a perfect company. But calling them stupid is and claiming they are trying to kill the PC is far more 'stupid'. While I agree that W8 isn't perfect, I don't assume that I have all the right answers as to why they designed it the way they did. Do you? Other than assumption or speculation etc...can you viably give me their stradegy? Can you speak to how the code was designed and for what purpose or future implementations? Can people speak on this topic with the IQ greater the a 5yo rather than just keep saying 'W8 is epic fail'? If you only knew who rediculous you sound.
  • 0 Hide
    ejb222 , October 18, 2012 7:12 PM
    PS....if you feel they aren't listening to the consumers then dont buy the product. And if what you say is true, many people wont buy the product. but from what I've heard, the preorders are already through the roof. Doesn't sound like the majority would agree with you.
  • 3 Hide
    SirGCal , October 18, 2012 7:31 PM
    ejb222SirGCal - You mean to say that you really think you are much wiser the MS? Why haven't you developed an OS? Or why not apply for a job at MS senior level to influence their decisions? I'm not saying that are a perfect company. But calling them stupid is and claiming they are trying to kill the PC is far more 'stupid'. While I agree that W8 isn't perfect, I don't assume that I have all the right answers as to why they designed it the way they did. Do you? Other than assumption or speculation etc...can you viably give me their stradegy? Can you speak to how the code was designed and for what purpose or future implementations? Can people speak on this topic with the IQ greater the a 5yo rather than just keep saying 'W8 is epic fail'? If you only knew who rediculous you sound.


    Wow, apparently you cannot. Insults and personal attacks. How mature.

    What I do know: M$'s own in-house testers for the server flavors were constantly complaining, WAY before it ever saw public testing. And I had to listen to a bunch of the in-house testing team complain about it every night and it just kept snowballing. And those are the markets which make M$ the big $, not home users. Not by a long shot. M$ has constantly been pushing away from productivity and it doesn't make any sense to even their own people in house. If ANYONE has a single reason why clicking 20 times down various menus is more efficient then clicking on a toolbar (thinking of latest office releases since 2000 and how they changed their menus and made them serious drill-downs as just one TINY example), by all means.

    Or why forcing people away from commands and into GUIs, even for server-level stuff, is a good idea?!? Especially on the server-side, there are loads of commonly used commands an IT tech can issue to tell literally thousands of boxes to execute at the same time. Now instead of typing out one command, they'll have to open some tool, drill down some options, etc. It's just not as time efficient.

    But if the in-house M$ people are complaining about it... And THEY can't even make sense of where M$ is trying to go with this... What makes you think any of us have any clue... As a tablet OS, it's great, but it's not meant for a tablet. For use with a keyboard and mouse, it's clumbsy. And sure there are ways to fix the UI itself, that's not the point. They are focusing on 'boot up times' and such which in the grand scheme of things are really rather pointless unless you just sit there and reboot your box all day and go 'Wow!', when what should be focused on is user efficiency and productivity.

    Intel even mentioned being worried about W8 and what it will do to the PC market. Don't get all up in a fuss at me because I'm the one with the guts to simply say it out loud...
  • 1 Hide
    ejb222 , October 18, 2012 7:54 PM
    SirGCalWow, apparently you cannot. Insults and personal attacks. How mature.What I do know: M$'s own in-house testers for the server flavors were constantly complaining, WAY before it ever saw public testing. And I had to listen to a bunch of the in-house testing team complain about it every night and it just kept snowballing. And those are the markets which make M$ the big $, not home users. Not by a long shot. M$ has constantly been pushing away from productivity and it doesn't make any sense to even their own people in house. If ANYONE has a single reason why clicking 20 times down various menus is more efficient then clicking on a toolbar (thinking of latest office releases since 2000 and how they changed their menus and made them serious drill-downs as just one TINY example), by all means.Or why forcing people away from commands and into GUIs, even for server-level stuff, is a good idea?!? Especially on the server-side, there are loads of commonly used commands an IT tech can issue to tell literally thousands of boxes to execute at the same time. Now instead of typing out one command, they'll have to open some tool, drill down some options, etc. It's just not as time efficient.But if the in-house M$ people are complaining about it... And THEY can't even make sense of where M$ is trying to go with this... What makes you think any of us have any clue... As a tablet OS, it's great, but it's not meant for a tablet. For use with a keyboard and mouse, it's clumbsy. And sure there are ways to fix the UI itself, that's not the point. They are focusing on 'boot up times' and such which in the grand scheme of things are really rather pointless unless you just sit there and reboot your box all day and go 'Wow!', when what should be focused on is user efficiency and productivity.Intel even mentioned being worried about W8 and what it will do to the PC market. Don't get all up in a fuss at me because I'm the one with the guts to simply say it out loud...

    Good arguements, I guess I'm just frustrated with the peeps who have no viable complaint. I went to Best Buy today and they have a bunch of W8 PCs and Laptops out to play around with. I have zero problems with any of the functionality and find it hard to believe that anyone would have many issues.
    Sorry I took my frustrations out on you.
  • 2 Hide
    SirGCal , October 18, 2012 8:28 PM
    ejb222Good arguements, I guess I'm just frustrated with the peeps who have no viable complaint. I went to Best Buy today and they have a bunch of W8 PCs and Laptops out to play around with. I have zero problems with any of the functionality and find it hard to believe that anyone would have many issues. Sorry I took my frustrations out on you.


    See, THAT is exactly what I'm talking about. They are spending 1.5 BILLION (not million), for those that don't get it, that's 1500 MILLION dollars... on advertizing.. How about taking a tiny fraction of that and actually ADD to the productivity and functionality of the product. Heck, you could even listen to the end-users and give them a different UI they want instead of them going out for a 3rd party option. MAKE it the OS everyone WANTS instead of trying to force people to use the one you want to give them...

    The core of W8 isn't bad at all. IT's the wrapper around it that will make or break it. If it's not more functional, people won't use it. They don't care how much more memory efficient it is or how much faster it will boot (generally speaking). They want it to be productive and effective. W7 was a major success. Many businesses STILL use XP and are finally going through the efforts to transition to W7. But to get them to jump to W8, that's not likely to happen with the current direction it's going.

    Hence my statement. 1.5 billion on trying to force a product vs spending a few million or even hundred million on makeing it what they always wanted anyhow to begin with?!? IF you have a better word, by all means give it to me. But all I can come up with is 'stupid'. From a business stand point, it just doesn't add up. Sorry if my initial post didn't come off that way but that's what I meant to put out there. And I agree there are a lot of trash-talkers on W8 and unfairly, but at the same point, from a professional prospective... "I just don't get it" where they're trying to go with this that is... And why the rigidity on giving the people, even the consumers, rather simple features honestly. And why take away from professionals, the features they've used for YEARS... Again, to me it just doesn't add up.
  • -2 Hide
    ejb222 , October 18, 2012 8:52 PM
    SirGCalHeck, you could even listen to the end-users and give them a different UI they want instead of them going out for a 3rd party option. MAKE it the OS everyone WANTS instead of trying to force people to use the one you want to give them....

    I guess I disagree that most people DONOT want Metro interface. I think what we see on the comments section of the forums is really a skewed perspective. First of all the forums represents a very small portion of consumers. Second of all, people are 5 tims more likey to complain than to rave about something. I'm sure with W8 being touted around at tech shows and the previews being out for almost a year now, that if MS even had a hint that the majority of people didn't like it, it would have been changed. I think the general direction is just simply to provide one experience that covers PC and mobile market. No need to have a laptop, and a tablet. W8 is genuinely a Macbook + iPad experience. Not only that, but something even as simple as the people app is a really good direction indicator. People App isn't just a list of contacts that you need to manage or ignorw ;)  But rather it is a constant feed from your contacts. People are clamouring for stuff like this. That's why FB and Twitter etc are so billion dollar industries. bundle that in to an OS that can run photoshop, exel, snap into a dock and run with as a dual monitor set up, pick it up and leave the house without having to sync files etc. What OS system can do that. Sure it's a little new to everyone, but at least it's a great step in a great direction. No other OS can do any of that... I hope that helped to explain the big picture. Granted your taste may differ, but from pure funtionality, there really is nothing that holds a candle to it. I can only imagine what the competition will bring in the next couple years. And maybe MS will allow for greater personlization in a SP...actually who really knows what the release will bring for customization. Anyway...your thoughts?
  • 4 Hide
    Anonymous , October 18, 2012 10:57 PM
    I thought "hackathon" would mean that people were getting paid to discover security flaws in Win8. I guess they'd rather not go there, Microsoft was never very good at making a secure OS.
  • 0 Hide
    echondo , October 18, 2012 11:19 PM
    impervious_linux_userI thought "hackathon" would mean that people were getting paid to discover security flaws in Win8. I guess they'd rather not go there, Microsoft was never very good at making a secure OS.


    I thought that too :/ 

    They have a secure OS but their own programs like IE are not secure. As long as you have a decent anti-virus and ad-block for all those pop-up ads and watch what you download/install, you won't get ANY viruses.

    I've been virus free for years now, scan my PC every month and it always comes out clean.

    Surprisingly MSE is actually a decent anti-virus, but I have MalwareBytes as well, just in case ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    SirGCal , October 19, 2012 12:59 AM
    ejb222I guess I disagree that most people DONOT want Metro interface.


    I think you misunderstood me yet again. I'll try to clarify my statement: If they changed the UI at least to have the ability to have the start menu, for example, in house instead of using 3rd party options like Start8 or something, then EVERYONE would be happy. Those who like Metro have that, those who don't have the start menu. I didn't mean removing one or the other.

    ejb222I'm sure with W8 being touted around at tech shows and the previews being out for almost a year now, that if MS even had a hint that the majority of people didn't like it, it would have been changed.


    I've been to more then one expo with M$ reps there with people, rather loudly, shouting their distaste for it very publicly. If they don't 'know', then they are ignoring it intentionally (And this wouldn't be the first time). I think they're trying to be 'radical' and different but along they way lost touch with productivity and efficiency somehow. I'm all for changes, but it has to make sense. Change just for the hell of it, and with lower productivity and efficiency is the wrong answer.

    As for bundling faceboot type stuff into the OS.. That's something that no company will allow. Facebook is one of the highest sources of malware and spyware today. Personally, I stopped even using it for chatting with friends a few years back. But to roll that into the OS itself would actually terrify me away from W8. But that's not what they're actually doing so... But still, all of that stuff can be done today with W7 or other flavors. Although I do find it interesting how many people love apps that are nothing more then a locked out browser of some stretch.

    Right now, I fully expect W8 to be a flop. At least at first. The people buying it right now are the OEM orders buying their license contracts. That's no surprise. Although it might be if they stop offering W7 at the same time... We'll see pretty soon I guess.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , October 19, 2012 1:04 AM
    echondo: Build a Windows Server/IIS/ASP.NET web server, with the antivirus of your choice and place it directly on the internet, not behind any kind of Linux proxy server, and you'll quickly see how insecure Windows really is.

    Then, note that Linux has ~90% marketshare of webservers(and equally high marketshare in proxies, DMZs, etc...), with multiple different web servers like Apache, Nginx, Tornado, etc... multiple different web scripting languages like PHP, Perl, Python, and virtually none of these servers have any kind of antivirus installed. Despite the massive diversity and choice in application stacks be developed by multiple different teams all over the world, they all (except for crappy Java, but I digress)manage to be perfectly secure.

    That, my friend, should tell you how insecure Windows really is, you shouldn't need an antivirus in a secure operating system. If hackers could be readily pwning those ~90% of web servers, they would, the market share argument Windoze fanboys make about Linux on the desktop is totally invalidated by Linux's market dominance of internet-facing servers.
  • 0 Hide
    David Zember , October 26, 2012 12:37 AM
    Why is it called "the hackathon" From what I understand, they're merely developers...