Hey Xamarin Peeps!
This issue we have more links than you can poke a stick at! (I think that's an Australian term). Very exciting! Thank you so much Xamarin Community.
Speaking of community, we are introducing a new section into the newsletter called "Xamarin Introductions" where we get to find out more about the amazing members of the Xamarin community. The idea is each week we will have a "interview" with a Xamarin hero, so we can learn more about them and the tools they love. Hope you like it.
Have a great weekend everyone, and thanks for reading
Xamarin Introductions - Ryan Davis
We are excited to have the first of the Xamarin Introductions series with Ryan Davis, who is a developer based in Brisbane, Australia. You may have seen some of his amazing UI works highlighted in the recent Community Challenges run by the Xamarin.Forms team and featured during the //Build 2019 conference. Let's learn a little about Ryan.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
A hobbyist-turned-professional developer with a penchant for .NET and mobile 📱
Tell us one thing we probably don't know about you?
Nintendo over Sony, iOS over Android, Azure over AWS, code over XAML, and tabs over spaces (not sorry)
How did you first get into Xamarin development?
I started out in mobile writing silly apps for iOS back when (after having been a staunch Apple holdout) - I got my first iPhone, a 3Gs. I used to alternate between writing objective C and googling things like "How to write iOS apps in Windows" or "How to write iOS apps using C#".. and here we are. I like to say I came to Xamarin for the C# and stayed for the community, which is what helped me take things from 'dabbling in mobile for fun' to doing it professionally.
What has been the most enjoyable project you have built using Xamarin?
I'd have to go with AR Bound - the demo app I use for my Introduction to ARKit talk: https://github.com/rdavisau/ar-bound. I decided to theme it after one of my favourite old video games - EarthBound - so in addition to playing with all the cool AR bits that ARKit offers, it gave me the opportunity to learn about how various game-related effects can be implemented - things like audio, progressive/typewriter text display, and my favourite - the crazy EarthBound battle background animations.
What advice would you give someone looking at getting started with Xamarin development?
My personal suggestion would be tap into the Xamarin community - that might mean following people on Twitter and Planet Xamarin in the first instance, which will give you an idea of what some of "the pros" are thinking, saying and doing. If you want to become more involved, participating in the various Xamarin challenges is a great way to dip your toes in and the community is very welcoming to newcomers. Getting along to a local meetup can a good option too.
From a learning perspective, the docs experience is first class, there's a bunch of quality content on Microsoft Learn and a growing number of Xamarin streamers on Twitch - spoiled for choice! I also have a (relatively opinionated) talk, "Starting out Right with Xamarin", that you might take tips from: https://ryandavis.io/starting-out-right-with-xamarin-2018-edition/
What are the MUST HAVE tools, resources and libraries that you use when building Xamarin apps?
There's a great newsletter I really like - 'The Weekly Xamarin', you should definitely check that out. Twitter, community blog posts and the docs serve me for resources.
For tools, I just use the basics - VS4Mac for apps, VS for the backends, and Parallels/VMWare to go MacOS->Windows and Windows->MacOS respectively.
For packages - Akavache for storage, DryIoC for DI, Essentials for the essentials (and of course, the interfaces 😇) are all staples.
And of course I am still quietly sitting here using @praeclarum's Continuous. It's the only package that truly ends up in every one of my projects, big or small.
Where do you think mobile will be in 5 years?
I won't claim to be a visionary, but I am excited to be along for the ride!
Thanks Ryan for sharing a little about yourself. You can find out more about what Ryan get's up to at: