Jim Bennett

Senior Cloud Developer Advocate at Microsoft, Xamarin Certified Developer, author of Xamarin In Action, blogger, speaker, father and lover of beer, whisky and Thai food. Opinions are my own.

  Reading, UK

See me soon at:

Techorama NL
Expert Day For Xamarin
Caribbean Developers Conference

My book:

Xamarin In Action

My podcast:

The Jim And Tonic Show
The Jim And Tonic Show on iTunes

Contact me:

  Xamarin In Action
  Twitter
  The Jim And Tonic Show
  GitHub
  LinkedIn
  YouTube
  Email
  CV

Updating your google-service.json from an AppCenter environment variable

I've been working on an app that needs push notifications, but also needs to be open source. This led me to a problem - the google-services.json file. This file is needed to sign up for Firebase messaging to implement push on Android, but it also contains my API keys, values I do NOT want to be public. So - what to do? Well I'm building and distrib…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 3 - Java 8 fun

In the first part of this post, I showed how to get started binding the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API. In the second part I showed how to make the code look more C#-like. In this part, I'll show how to use it and fix up a nasty issue with the Android compiler and using jars created with the latest versions of Java. Using the SDK To use th…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 2, making the code more C#-like

In the first part of this post, I showed how to get started binding the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API. In this part I show how to make the code look more C#-like. In the third part I'll show how to use it and fix up a nasty issue with the Android compiler and using jars created with the latest versions of Java. Making the namespaces more…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 1, binding the library

As part of the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API, there is a native Java Android SDK available as an .aar file. I wanted to use this in a Xamarin app, so I created a binding project for it. The code for this is available in my GitHub. Binding an SDK is a four step process: Create the binding project with the relevant jar or aar file Make any…

Read More

Identifying my daughters toys using AI - Part 1, creating the model

Prefer to watch instead of read? - https://youtu.be/3sjInlJcpBs It's currently just after Christmas, and my 4 year old daughter has received a fair few cuddly toys from Santa. These bring her total collection up to way too many, and like most parents I have a hard time remembering all their names, especially the least favorite ones that rarely come…

Read More

Creating Visual Studio project and solution templates - Part 1, dotnet new

I've recently updated my MvvmCross templates to support .NET Standard to be ready for the awesome future. Unfortunately this meant a complete rewrite of my templates as the out of the box Visual Studio project template extensions on both Windows and Mac don't support .NET Standard. As it turned out though, this rewrite was a blessing in disguise as…

Read More

Introduction to UI Testing with Xamarin

This article is an excerpt from Xamarin in Action. Save 37% off the cover price using code fccbennett at http://xam.jbb.io. One of the great things about the MVVM design pattern is that it allows us to maximize the code in our cross-platform model and view-model layers. This means we’ve written the bulk of our code and we’ve also written u…

Read More

Firewall issues with iOS simulators

I keep getting an annoying issue with my iOS simulators. When I run an app in a simulator that needs any form of network connection I get a dialog box popup from the built in Mac firewall asking if I want to allow incoming connections. Even though I click 'allow', I get asked this every time and it's getting tedious. The issue seems to be in the…

Read More

Stay warm with Microsoft & Xamarin!

For those in New Zealand, Microsoft and Xamarin have announced some cool events: Brr! It’s getting cold outside. Microsoft has a plan to get you through winter with some awesome Xamarin events and competitions and apparel! Are you ready to sharpen your skills in a fun, fast-paced environment? Microsoft is hosting FREE Xamarin training events around…

Read More

Specflow support in Visual Studio for Mac

Love Specflow and Visual Studio for Mac? Well you are in luck as there is now a working extension for Visual Studio for Mac to enable full specflow support including generating feature files with syntax highlighting. It's all open source and built upon the amazing work by Mike Jones. You can find it on GitHub at https://github.com/straighteight/Spe…

Read More

Nugetizer 3000

One cool new feature in Visual Studio for Mac is the ability to create NuGet packages from your projects automatically whenever you compile. This new feature is thanks to a cool project started by Xamarin called the Nugetizer 3000 (I do love Miguel's naming conventions). It's really easy to turn this on. From your project open the project pro…

Read More

Be quick - 50% off Xamarin In Action for one week

The MEAP of my book, Xamarin In Action, has just been updated to include a new chapter covering building cross-platform view models. This chapter talks about how you can use view models to increase the amount of cross-platform, unit testable code in your Xamarin app by moving UI logic away from the platform specific layers down into your cross-plat…

Read More
 

Updating your google-service.json from an AppCenter environment variable

I've been working on an app that needs push notifications, but also needs to be open source. This led me to a problem - the google-services.json file. This file is needed to sign up for Firebase messaging to implement push on Android, but it also contains my API keys, values I do NOT want to be public. So - what to do? Well I'm building and distrib…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 3 - Java 8 fun

In the first part of this post, I showed how to get started binding the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API. In the second part I showed how to make the code look more C#-like. In this part, I'll show how to use it and fix up a nasty issue with the Android compiler and using jars created with the latest versions of Java. Using the SDK To use th…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 2, making the code more C#-like

In the first part of this post, I showed how to get started binding the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API. In this part I show how to make the code look more C#-like. In the third part I'll show how to use it and fix up a nasty issue with the Android compiler and using jars created with the latest versions of Java. Making the namespaces more…

Read More

Binding the Cognitive Services Android Speech SDK - Part 1, binding the library

As part of the Microsoft Cognitive Services speech API, there is a native Java Android SDK available as an .aar file. I wanted to use this in a Xamarin app, so I created a binding project for it. The code for this is available in my GitHub. Binding an SDK is a four step process: Create the binding project with the relevant jar or aar file Make any…

Read More

Identifying my daughters toys using AI - Part 1, creating the model

Prefer to watch instead of read? - https://youtu.be/3sjInlJcpBs It's currently just after Christmas, and my 4 year old daughter has received a fair few cuddly toys from Santa. These bring her total collection up to way too many, and like most parents I have a hard time remembering all their names, especially the least favorite ones that rarely come…

Read More

Creating Visual Studio project and solution templates - Part 1, dotnet new

I've recently updated my MvvmCross templates to support .NET Standard to be ready for the awesome future. Unfortunately this meant a complete rewrite of my templates as the out of the box Visual Studio project template extensions on both Windows and Mac don't support .NET Standard. As it turned out though, this rewrite was a blessing in disguise as…

Read More

Introduction to UI Testing with Xamarin

This article is an excerpt from Xamarin in Action. Save 37% off the cover price using code fccbennett at http://xam.jbb.io. One of the great things about the MVVM design pattern is that it allows us to maximize the code in our cross-platform model and view-model layers. This means we’ve written the bulk of our code and we’ve also written u…

Read More

Firewall issues with iOS simulators

I keep getting an annoying issue with my iOS simulators. When I run an app in a simulator that needs any form of network connection I get a dialog box popup from the built in Mac firewall asking if I want to allow incoming connections. Even though I click 'allow', I get asked this every time and it's getting tedious. The issue seems to be in the…

Read More

Stay warm with Microsoft & Xamarin!

For those in New Zealand, Microsoft and Xamarin have announced some cool events: Brr! It’s getting cold outside. Microsoft has a plan to get you through winter with some awesome Xamarin events and competitions and apparel! Are you ready to sharpen your skills in a fun, fast-paced environment? Microsoft is hosting FREE Xamarin training events around…

Read More

Specflow support in Visual Studio for Mac

Love Specflow and Visual Studio for Mac? Well you are in luck as there is now a working extension for Visual Studio for Mac to enable full specflow support including generating feature files with syntax highlighting. It's all open source and built upon the amazing work by Mike Jones. You can find it on GitHub at https://github.com/straighteight/Spe…

Read More

Nugetizer 3000

One cool new feature in Visual Studio for Mac is the ability to create NuGet packages from your projects automatically whenever you compile. This new feature is thanks to a cool project started by Xamarin called the Nugetizer 3000 (I do love Miguel's naming conventions). It's really easy to turn this on. From your project open the project pro…

Read More

Be quick - 50% off Xamarin In Action for one week

The MEAP of my book, Xamarin In Action, has just been updated to include a new chapter covering building cross-platform view models. This chapter talks about how you can use view models to increase the amount of cross-platform, unit testable code in your Xamarin app by moving UI logic away from the platform specific layers down into your cross-plat…

Read More