Language/library updates

JRuby 1.6.0 released

JRuby 1.6.0 has been released, with “hundreds” of bug fixes and high compatibility with Ruby 1.9.2. The team is also making Windows an equal player in the JRuby ecosystem.

IronPython 2.7

IronPython 2.7 has been released. This is a major development because it brings IronPython up to Python 2.7, includes features from Python 3.0, and adds (drumroll) Visual Studio support for IronPython and support for extension methods. I’ll be trying this out along with my recent IronRuby experiments.

Tools and products

Visual Studio 2010 SP1

Visual Studio (VS) 2010 Service Pack 1 has been released. It contains lots of bug and performance fixes, but my favorite upgrade so far is that the local help is finally as useful as it was in previous versions. There are also some TFS upgrades for VS 2010 Ultimate Edition users. The bad news is, this totally blew up on installation for one of my systems, and I’ve heard second-hand reports that others are having issues too.

db4o 8

db4o, a well-known OODBMS, is now at version 8. It looks like the big reason to upgrade is replication.

Appcelerator Titanium+Plus

Appcelerator has released Titanium+Plus, which combines its Titanium cross-platform mobile development platform with a variety of useful add-ons and modules.

LightSwitch Beta 2

Microsoft announced the second beta of its LightSwitch application, which is a way to create data-driven Silverlight applications quickly.

Editorial and commentary

Smaller XML documents on their way

The W3C has approved a variant of the XML standard that makes it smaller to transport and easier to parse, which is welcome news for developers, particularly for mobile apps. This is a new spec so its long-term viability is up in the air. All the same, it’s a good move, and I hope it gains tool support.

Tips and tricks

Free ASP.NET MVC video training

Pluralsight is offering a free video training course on ASP.NET MVC.

Another Silverlight MVVM tutorial

Dan Wahlin offers a basic tutorial on using the MVVM pattern in Silverlight apps.

Markup extensions in WPF and SL5

Pete Brown posted a tutorial on how to add your own markup extensions to WPF and the upcoming SL5.


Quova “Location Developer Challenge”

Quova is holding a contest for mobile developers who work with location aware websites using their API. There are a number of prizes, including a monthly cash award.

AppSumo Lean Startup Challenge
AppSumo is having a contest for startups using lean methodologies, with cash, funding, mentoring, and other prizes. Hurry, it closes on March 20. (Note: You are required to provide your email address.)
PHP Community Conference

The PHP Community Conference will be in Nashville, TN on April 21 and 22. Admission is $300.