Apologies for the short digresion from development technology but …
.. with the luck of the devil I managed to snag a plus one for my daughter Daisy and I to a private screening of "Thor:The Dark Army" at the Cineworld/IMAX in Birmingham last night. After being treated to a red carpet and champagne reception we duly sat down in the elevated comfort of screen 8 and, a pleasant change, we were straight into the film with no previews or ads. One thing I would say is that the film has quite a few potential spoilers so be careful what you read before going out to the film yourself, Oh, and be sure not to leave during the closing credits! (The closing credits are some of the most incredible 3D cartoon graphics that I have seen, so you are not going to want to leave without seeing them all!)
First the cast, a well chosen ensemble, reprising their roles from the first film with Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston and (of course) Anthony Hopkins providing the gravitas that allows you to absolutely believe in the Norse / Viking-esk world of the film (notwithstanding that much action takes place in London!). For this film the primary bad guy isn’t Loki (yes, he is bad) but the leader of an elf army, played menacingly well by Christopher Ecclestone.
What made the film that little bit more enjoyable for me was the odd interjection of humour. Loki’s humour was delivered with deadpan confidence that had the audience laughing out loud in several places. But Thor also gets a look in – again, deadpan and raising a good few laughs that provide a welcome, if short relief to the tension and action of the film itself.
Now perhaps it was just me but I felt that there was definitely a nod to some sci-fi classics in this film. First the elf army – reminded me of an enemy of the Dr himself:the Pertwee-era “Autons” (though, looking at them now, perhaps that is a stretch). Did did I also detect some Star Wars like sound effects? (An echo of a tie fighter engines mixed in with a smattering of the Phantom Menace racing pods perhaps?) Not to diminish the sound and visual effects of the film – which were Epic (3D was awesome too – effective, without being too ‘in your face’)
So no spoilers but how well does this trailer reflect the film itself? Well it does manage to purvey the mood and excitement of the film without giving too much away, but the film itself is EPIC in 3D! So, don’t be mean to yourself, go out and find the biggest 3D screen cinema you can – you are not going to be disappointed!
It’s often useful to display the current App version (per your App Manifest) for support purposes. I came across the following snippet that looks to provide the easiest option that requires no manual updates when you release a new version of your app:
VersionTextBox.Text = XDocument.Load("WMAppManifest.xml").Root.Element("App").Attribute("Version").Value;
I usually use this in my about box similar to this (add a textbox named VersionTextBox to your xaml first):
My dialog with Microsoft about ‘missing downloads’ has been an agonising one in which I have simply failed to get through to anyone who believes that there is anything wrong with the above picture. (To paraphrase and simplify: ‘our system tells us that you didn’t have any downloads during that time period’)
If you work at Microsoft and are willing to help please get in touch, you will find that I am a reasonable and committed, albeit frustrated, independent developer.
I have been a part of Nokia’ developer program for quite a while and thought I would take the time to point out a particular recent challenge in its’ DVLUP program that represents a quick win on three counts:
1. The Challenge doesn’t require a new version of the App so consequently is very quick to implement.
2. You gain entry to a significant number of new Phone markets (equals increased revenue!) by completing this challenge.
3. It’s maybe one of the easiest ways to get 100 xp points in the DVLUP program!
For details of the DVLUP program and this challenge check out this link:
When going through my own apps for this challenge I was surprised to find that the majority of them were not already submitted to all potential markets so I consider this challenge to have done me a service! Thanks DVLUP!