Really glad that more XAML events comes to Montreal:

Beyond Tiles Design Integration Workshop Tour in Canada

“Join us again in this second wave of the Beyond Tiles Workshop and learn advanced design integration techniques to produce pixel perfect Windows and Windows Phone user interfaces. Replicate the original vision of designers with fidelity by following best practices as implemented by the Windows Phone design studio and leading agencies in the Microsoft ecosystem.”
Previous experience developing Windows and/or Windows Phone apps is required.

What can I Expect?

In this hands-on workshop you will be able to explore the process of taking a set of high fidelity comps provided by a designer and translate those to Blend and Visual Studio with pixel perfection quality. You will learn techniques for exporting vector and bitmap assets from Expression Design into Blend and to define the right layout panels to host your UI. You will also learn how to skin controls and design lists. The goal is to achieve perfection when translating comps to UI. You should already be familiar with Blend, Visual Studio and XAML in general

What will I Achieve?

In the morning you will learn different Design Integration techniques with the help of a couple design experts. In the afternoon you will put this learning to the test with a hands on workshop where you will be provided with a couple UIs for Windows and Windows Phone. You will then take these UIs and turn them into high fidelity UIs in Blend – all with XAML.

What Should I Bring?

This is a workshop: bring your laptop! You will need Expression Design (download for free at and Visual Studio with both Windows and Windows Phone SDKs. When installing Visual Studio make sure Blend for Visual Studio is also installed. If you need a free version of Visual Studio you can download and install from here: (install both Visual Studio Express 2013 for Windows and Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Phone).

How much does it cost?

This is a complimentary event‚ specifically offered to support the Canadian design and developer community.


More info and registration (Montreal):


See you there!

I am pleasantly surprised by the release of a new Microsoft exam focused on design!

Exam 74-353: Windows UX Design

This exam validates skills associated with applying Microsoft user experience (UX) guidelines to the design of Windows 8 Store applications.

By passing this exam, you will earn the credential “Microsoft Certified Specialist: Windows UX Design

This certification complements the skills validated in the MCSD: Windows Store Apps certification.

If you plan to take this exam, the following resources might help:

Windows 8

windows phone

I got the question this week while presenting at the local user group (I was talking about Microsoft design recommendations for tiles).

“Do you have any pointers that could help while designing my Windows Store apps and tiles ?”

So here is what I use and recommend:
(If you also have interesting stuff please comment)

Windows 8:


Windows Phone 8:


Additional resource:

PerfecTile tool (not free):

Windows 8 Design Handbook:

24 Weeks of Windows Phone Design:

[french] Memo ModernUI pour faire de belles applications Windows Phone:

The Microsoft design language (formerly known as Metro) is the touch-and-tile UX language that Microsoft designed to create an interface focused on content, information, and movement. It is designed to embrace those principles: clean, light, fast, open aesthetics; dynamic, moving transitions and interactions; embrace the beauty of typography; content-focused interface; and authentically digital design. This new tiles interface is now on Windows 8, Windows Phone and XBOX.

Microsoft has finally realized its 3-screen strategy and this is a game changer; if you plan to work on creating software for the Microsoft platform, you need to become familiar with those UX principles. Find below some links that will be helpful:


MSDN: UX guidelines for Windows Store apps


MSDN: Windows Phone General Design Principles

And as soon as you become serious about building your first app (for you or a customer), you NEED to read this document if you want your app to get certified with less trouble:

Windows 8 UX Guidelines for Windows Store apps
(316 pages of detailed user experience guidelines!!!)


The touch guidance and links on my previous post are still valid: