Language/library updatesIronRuby 1.1.1
IronRuby 1.1.1 has been released. The big news here is that it has Visual Studio integration; it is also much more compatible with Ruby 1.9.2 and has a number of bug fixes. Hopefully, this is enough to reverse the backwards momentum on this project, which I consider critical for the health of the .NET ecosystem.IronPython updates
Microsoft released a CTP of new APIs and language grammars to work with asynchronous patterns. It looks like it wraps functionality in the Parallel Extensions Framework to do it. I look forward to seeing how this turns out.New WCF APIs
Microsoft released two new WCF APIs on CodePlex; one makes HTTP a more prominent player in the WCF stack to make it easier to work with REST, while the other is an API for jQuery.Silverlight MVVM Light Toolkit
The MVVM Light Toolkit for Silverlight is designed to make it easy to write Silverlight apps based on the MVVM pattern.
Tools and productsBlackBerry App World opens up
RIM opened the doors to its App World storefront for BlackBerry apps. This can only be positive for BlackBerry developers, and it will hopefully bring in some much-needed competition to the mobile space.Titanium+Commerce to provide mobile payment solutions
Appcelerator announced a partnership with PayPal to create the new Titanium+Commerce offering. This will allow developers to use a payment platform throughout their applications with a large range of payment options.Free Azure for academic projects
Microsoft is making Azure available for free to academic institutions for up to two projects for three years.Karmasphere partners with Teradata
Optimal Workshop is now bundling its usability tools to save you some money. I've tried the company's tools, and I liked them.
Editorial and commentaryA new direction for Silverlight
ZDNet blogger Mary Jo Foley reports that Microsoft announced a shift in its Silverlight strategy. It looks like Microsoft is focusing Silverlight on the phone, and if you should use HTML 5 for in-browser stuff. It's no surprise, since Flash is still the overwhelming in-browser choice. Microsoft is also dramatically slowing the pace of change in Silverlight, to which I say, "thank goodness." (Related TechRepublic poll: Is the Silverlight stack too complex?)Windows Phone 7 Ad Control is rather ugly
Brian Hitney has found that the Windows Phone 7 Ad Control puts up some fairly frightening privacy warnings to users when they install your app. It's something to keep in mind when writing your Windows Phone 7 apps.
Tips and tricksExcellent intro to Silverlight, written by a TR member
TechRepublic reader Terje Bergesen has written an excellent introduction on getting started using Web services in Silverlight. I will write an article in the near future in which I talk about my initial experiences with Silverlight + Windows Phone 7 development.Windows Phone 7 Emulator + Fiddler
Brian Hitney has written a must-read article (for Windows Phone 7 developers, at least) about how to work with Fiddler to debug the HTTP traffic on your Windows Phone 7 apps.Making REST Web Services in NetBeans
EventsEclipse Embedded Day Spain
J.JaDisclosure of Justin's industry affiliations: Justin James has a contract with Spiceworks to write product buying guides; he has a contract with OpenAmplify, which is owned by Hapax, to write a series of blogs, tutorials, and articles; and he has a contract with OutSystems to write articles, sample code, etc.
Justin James is an OutSystems MVP, architect, and developer with expertise in SaaS applications and enterprise applications.