It’s been a long time since I made a substantial update to Car Dash. But I finally released one yesterday.

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Car Dash | Microsoft Store

Car Dash now has the look and feel of a Windows 10 Mobile app, and several layout issues that were occurring on Windows 10 Mobile devices will now be resolved.

In addition to that functionality to open apps like Nokia Music, Here Drive and Here Maps which are no longer present on Windows 10 Mobile have been removed, and now the app can open Groove Music and Maps instead.

Is there functionality for Windows 10 Mobile that you think the app is still missing? Please let me know in the comments here, or at my UserVoice. Also, would you be interested in getting Car Dash on your Windows 10 tablet or desktop device? Is there any special functionality that you think a Big Windows version of Car Dash should have? Please let me know.

I’ve been enjoying my first 2 months of my new job at PAR Government, and I wanted to make this quick post to share some job postings from the company.

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If you have experience with C++ and/or mobile development and live near Cary, NC or VA Beach (or have an interest in relocating to either area) please check out these listings. You can also feel free to reach out to me personally with any questions you may have about the job/company if you’re interested.

Senior Software Engineer – Cary, NC

Senior Software Engineer – VA Beach

I’ve been with ALK Technologies since 2007 and today was my last day. It was my first job after graduating from College, and I am extremely grateful for the opportunities I’ve had while working there. I worked with a great team of both junior and senior programmers and learned a lot about C++, Mobile Development and good Software Engineering practices while there. I will really miss my team at ALK, and will continue using CoPilot GPS as my navigation app of choice.

My family and I have decided we’re ready for something new however, so we’re going on a bit of an adventure. My wife and I have both lived in New Jersey for almost our entire lives (spent about 1 year in Pennsylvania, not much of a difference) but we’ll soon be moving down to the Raleigh area of North Carolina. I’ve accepted a job with PAR Government where I’ll continue using C++ to build Mobile Applications.

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The Raleigh area seems like it will be a fantastic place to raise a family and my two kids are both excited by the prospect of moving in to a new home. There also seems to be a much larger developer community in the RTP area that I am looking forward to becoming a part of.

Once I’m settled in to the new job and new home I hope to become more active on this blog again. I haven’t been nearly as active with my apps like Car Dash lately (which needs a Win10 upgrade) although CppCast has been keeping me very busy.

The term Dark Matter Developers was coined by Scott Hanselman in this blog post from 2012. In his post he defines Dark Matter Developers:

My coworker Damian Edwards and I hypothesize that there is another kind of developer than the ones we meet all the time. We call them Dark Matter Developers. They don’t read a lot of blogs, they never write blogs, they don’t go to user groups, they don’t tweet or facebook, and you don’t often see them at large conferences. Where are these dark matter developers online?

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I recently did a guest post on the Outlier Developer Blog which I’ve now re-posted here. You should go check out the Outlier Developer Blog if you haven’t already, and go watch Cory House‘s excellent Pluralsight course Becoming an Outlier: Reprogramming the Developer Mind

Like many aspiring outliers I’ve been multithreading my life by listening to Software & Technology Podcasts while doing mundane tasks like commuting or doing housework. Some of these podcasts will frequently have guest interviews. Becoming a guest on these podcasts can be a great way to widen your scope of influence and impart some knowledge to the podcast listeners.

Over the past two years I had the privilege of being a guest on some of my favorite podcasts: The Windows Developer Show, .NET Rocks! and The MS Dev Show. Being a guest on each of these shows was a great experience, and motivated me to start my own podcast: CppCast. As both a podcast guest and podcast host I hope I can share some tips that you can use to become a podcast guest.

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I don’t exercise enough, but I wish I did. Starting today I’m going to try my best to change that.

My biggest problem with exercise has always been finding the time. I work a full time job that includes a long commute; after that I like to spend some time with my wife and kids. At night is when I have a few hours of time to myself, but I typically like to spend that time working on my apps, blogging, podcasting or working on other side projects. I rarely watch TV (cut the cable a year ago) and occasionally play video games during this time.

I’ve always had a hard time justifying the time spent on exercising even though I know it’s important. I’ve tried multitasking in the past by combining some weight lifting while watching TV or a movie. But I really don’t watch that much TV, and I can’t weight lift while playing the Xbox. My wife knows all this and is always trying to get me in better shape so a few weeks ago she found this mini elliptical device online and showed it to me. It seemed like a good device, and had a smaller size profile (and cost) when compared to other options such as a treadmill. I decided it’d be worth a try and today it arrived from Amazon.

First impressions of the Stamina In-Motion Elliptical Trainer are pretty good. It only took me a few minutes to unwrap and assemble it before I was ready to go. The instructions recommended you to put the elliptical over an equipment mat which I’d definitely recommend. I think some of the Amazon reviews mentioned that it might leak a bit of oil residue after a few weeks of use, you wouldn’t want to get that on your carpet.

After the initial setup I fired up the Xbox One and played some Minecraft while working out, mission accomplished! A half hour of gameplay + elliptical got my legs pretty tired and worked up a good sweat. This had the added bonus of preventing me from spending too much time playing games.

Using the elliptical while standing, which I did, does take some getting used to. The machine raises you up about 6 inches, at this height I was looking down at my TV which felt odd. You also need to concentrate on balance, which I imagine will get easier the more often you use the elliptical. I almost fell over 2 or 3 times during my first workout, no injuries yet though.

All in all it definitely seems like a nice device if you want to add some exercise to your video gaming or tv watching free time. It’s definitely going to be part of my routine going forward.

 

A few weeks ago I posed the question: Does C++ need its own podcast? The poll results were pretty clear, I wasn’t the only C++ developer interested in a C++ podcast.

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Yesterday I had the pleasure of recording an interview with Jon Kalb about his amazing work growing the C++ community and the episode is now live: http://cppcast.com/2015/01/jon-kalb-loves-the-cpp-community/

I’m really excited to have this first episode out and there will definitely be more to come. In the mean time I’d love to get feedback on show format, guest ideas, and anything else you can think of. Please send emails to feedback [at] cppcast [dot] com with any suggestions you may have.