Category Archives: Windows 8 App

Rockin with Russ Fustino!

Join the Mobile Application Developer Meetup Group in Tampa, Florida!

Meeting Dates Set for 2015!

MAD Tampa will generally meet every second Wednesday

Time: 5:30-8:00PM

Location: AgileThought Office (Tampa)

2502 N Rocky Point Dr. Ste 900
Tampa, FL 33607  (map)
Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Two Sessions by Russ Fustino, MVP and Raygun Community Evangelist


How we built the Jethro Tull Endorsed app using Xamarin Forms

Is Xamarin Forms the real deal? Join MVP Russ Fustino as he shares insights into the trials, tribulations and joy of building the Endorsed Jethro Tull App. Hot off the metal topics covered include: background images in the app (that are not distorted), using custom renderers, using embedded resources, XAML markup for Tablet and Phone, instrumentation, custom view cell, image sizes, third party controls including Mr. Gestures,  Circle Image Control ,  Xam.Plugins.Settings as well as portrait and landscape orientations. Also, he will cover some gotcha’s on the submission process to Amazon Store, Google Play and The App store including: setting up a test team, app size limitations on Android, iTunes and Apple logos, competitive mobile platform stores for iOS apps, in app purchases and third party endorsement proof.


Improving Your App Quality

Join MVP Russ Fustino as he shares a great error reporting tool that is fast and reliable, no matter what the load. See how he used Raygun this during the development cycle to help debug errors and some weird bugs for the Endorsed Jethro Tull app. It is also great for the production environment and gives you real time data and affected user information. Be proactive and fix errors before your users hound you down. See an overview of Raygun and the many supported platforms as well as integrations.

Download your free trial today! and follow @raygunio


Russ Fustino is a Raygun Community Evangelist and a highly experienced software evangelist. As well he has developed and published Windows Store, Windows Phone 8.1 Universal, Xamarin iOS, Android and WP 8 apps. He is a former Developer Evangelist for Xamarin, ComponentOne and Microsoft and is CEO of Fustino Brothers, Inc (FBI). FBI Tull apps are endorsed by Jethro Tull. Russ has a passion for software development and tools through conveying technology via live seminars, webcasts, blogs, photos and internet video productions. Russ is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) in Client Development and an INETA Lifetime Achievement Award winner for helping educate, entertain and enlighten over 1 million programmers. Russ co-heads up an INETA group: Mobile Application Developers Tampa (MADTampa – ). Check out Russ’ blog at and follow @RussFustino

Russ Fustino shows Jethro Tull app to Ian Anderson

It’s live!  One of the most incredible moments of my life! See a great video produced by Microsoft about Fustino Brothers’  endorsed app, Jethro Tull. Most importantly,  see footage of your truly, Russ Fustino,  showing the app to rock legend, Grammy award winner, Ian Anderson in person!




It’s about a three minute clip and in the first minute you will see background and some cool 3 brother fan shots. In the middle, I go into how I used App Studio to build the app and it ends with the best part of showing Ian Anderson the app. It was filmed in Lynn Mass on Nov 1, 2014 at a concert where he performed the Best of Jethro Tull and his new CD Homo Erraticus . Check out his comment about Jimmy Page! Also, check out the surface pro in the closing credits, firing up the Jethro Tull app. So cool! The video team that Microsoft hired did an incredible job. Enjoy!

The Jethro Tull is endorsed and published to Windows Store and Windows Phone Store.

Here is the link to the channel9 video itself:


Happy Holidays!

Russ Fustino, Full Time CEO of Fustino Brothers

  • I am back to being CEO of Fustino Brothers, full time. Email and please follow @FustinoBrothers and @RussFustino
  • I am taking a little break  from my contract with Xamarin and Developer Evangelism
  • On a little painful news, it is starting to look like I need laser surgery on my back. During recovery period I plan on doing a lot of coding, as traveling will not be possible, and publish the Jethro Tull iOS and Android Apps using Xamarin. I will know more in a couple of weeks.
  • I am heading up to the Jethro Tull shows in Providence, RI tonight and Lynn, MA on Saturday .  I will be  showing Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull the FBI Jethro Tull app  for Windows Phone and Windows Store right after sound check in Lynn. How exciting is this!
  • The App Studio team will be at the Lynn, MA show to capture the moment.
  • Then its off  to the MVP Summit for my favorite conference of the year! I am so looking forward to seeing everyone! I think I am in trouble however, as my room mate is the one and only Jonas Stawski. Yikes! Smile


  • I will be documenting my way thru this experience of Using App Studio to start an app and using Xamarin to finish it. I am working on a new set of videos for WintellectNOW. More details to come as to topics and content.
  • I am working with the App Studio Windows   team to make the generated C# projects Xamarin friendly, facilitating cross platform capabilities.  The team is very close right now , and keeps getting closer in every release.
  • I hope to be back with Xamarin after the new year in some capacity.
  • I received my Xamarin Mobile App Certification in October and my 2014 Renewal for Microsoft MVP 2014 in Microsoft Platform Development!
  • Wish me luck!

Xamarin Ceritified Mobile Developer Badge-small res


Jethro Tull app highlighted on Microsoft App Studio Site!

How exciting is this? I have written many apps for Windows Phone and Store, but the Fustino Brother’s Inc (FBI) endorsed Jethro Tull app is the first one to get highlighted! Also, my brothers and I are really looking forward to next weekend! We will be showing the app in person to Ian Anderson after the sound check for the Lynn, Mass show on Nov 1. Imagine that? Showing an app that the Fustino Brothers wrote ourselves to our music idol!  I can’t wait. Many thanks to the App Studio folks who will be filming this moment and all of the support they have provided.  Will share that link as soon as it is produced for sure.

If you are a Jethro Tull fan and have not checked out the Windows Universal app yet, for Windows Phone and Store, please do! The app is an endorsed collection of everything you want to know about Tull and Ian Anderson including Official Videos, Fan Videos, a rich Discography, tour dates, social media feeds and links to a wealth of Tull resources including past band members.




YouTube For Apps and Biz

Topic: “YouTube” for Apps Dev and Biz Mtg

Date 7/14/14 at Noon EST

Presentations by Gary (dba: Design For Communication), Russ (of Russ’ ToolShed fame), and Rich (entertainment industry’s Steele Productions). Live chat and Q&A. Bring your expertise to the table.

Register here:

Theme: How to use You Tube, another very important social media tool, for your application (apps) development and online business marketing. Discussion is open for you to share in your successful expertise or painful experiences.

Pain Points: What is the problem with YouTube?
• Finding (the right) videos can be a challenge
• Playlists help, but how do I use them?
• Who can see videos I post?
• Who can see playlists I create?
• If picture is worth a 100 words. What is a video worth?
• Can I create an app with YouTube videos?



•Uploading Videos
•Privacy settings
•App Studio and the YouTube API
Join us for a free webinar and discuss this challenges live.

Associated Websites:

Event Note: Online Meetup only. Takes place every second Monday of each month (unless a holiday). Includes business, B2B, tech talk and online solutions engagement. Meeting starts with participant introductions, then a targeted live presentation on topic. Join us online for free. Your interest and expertise are invited. Advertise with us at a very low investment (not mandatory, but it’s one of the benefits). Live Online Screen Meeting and Conference Call Instructions to Join-In:

1. On Your Calendar – Block-Out Approximately 35-55 Mins for the Live Meeting/Conference Call.

2. On Your Computer- It’s Recommended to Use a Headset. Join-In 5-7 minutes before meeting, Over the Internet, with your computer/laptop/tablet at- This link:

If you don’t already have the “Start Meeting” free software a dialog box will come up and ask permission to download – please click/tap “Yes”. The system will guide you through the process to participate in the online meeting. Click/tap “Join”, complete your name and email address, then click/tap “Submit”.

First, the Fustino Brothers, Inc. dashboard with show on screen. Test your speaker/mike. If headset doesn’t work, or if connection is lost – try “Rejoin”.

3. For the Phone- Take Your Call in a Quite Location. Join-In using a land line/mobile phone (no computer needed for this option). Dial- 530-881-1212, at 12:01PM. When prompted enter access code followed by the “pound” key.

679-256-129# (be sure to include the “#” symbol).

4. Meeting May be Recorded. Meeting ID: 679-256-129

5. For Advertising opportunities go to:

Russ Fustino, Xamarin Developer Evangelist!

Hello all! I am happy to announce I am the new Developer Evangelist for Xamarin! I am so excited about this next chapter in my career. I am looking forward to learning and teaching one of the hottest set of software products on this planet, which will help the lives of many fellow geeks! It is a very rewarding position indeed and I am on cloud 9. Everyone I have met at Xamarin is awesome and I look forward getting to know the entire team.

For those that unfamiliar on what Xamarin does… we produce software for programmers which facilitates creating the same mobile app, natively, on multiple platforms such as Windows Phone,  Android and iOS. It is a ‘must have’ tool in the industry with some incredible recent announcements on the new version Xamarin 3.



I will be traveling up to the Boston Xamarin office on occasion and I look forward to seeing all the “Shed Heads” back home. So, New England crew, get those lobsters ready!

And of course, I will be hitting up all the conferences for speaking engagements in and around Florida and all over the country. Drop me an email if you are interested in having me speak at your user group or conference. My new email at Xamarin is .

I also setup a new twitter @RussFustino with my actual name (about time huh?). Please follow! I will have more details on my Xamarin blog once it gets set up. Stay tuned and follow me on twitter. Thanks!


Gary Fustino Nominated for Good Burger Award. Please vote!

Gary has been nominated for the Good Burger award in St. Pete for “Cool Companies – Small” as Design For Communication. He has contributed much in the community including being an active member of our user groups and design for several Windows Phone and Windows 8 apps.

good burger

Gary is spreading the word to vote for him to become a winner in the St Pete’s Chamber Good Burger Award contest! And this a quite an honor. Voting starts today and runs thru July 17 and we would appreciate your support.

Go to: and cast your vote. “Design For Communication” is in the category “Cool Companies – Small”. It only takes a few seconds to vote.

Thank you for all you do in the community, too.

Also, please joins us on Aug 28 at Jannus Live for the award party from 6-9pm with 5 bands. Non-Member Attendee = $20.

Gary Fustino

· St Pete Chamber & Midstate Chamber – Ambassador

· Bluffs Business Association – eServices Director

· Member of Tampa Bay Computer Society

· Member/Participant of Visual Design League, Tampa Bay Win Dev, Win Phone 8, DevUp, Tampa & Sarasota BarCamp/CodeCamp, Xamarin MeetUp

· Former Employee of the New York State Council on the Arts

· Buffalo Art Directors Club

Xamarin 3 Rocks! Tampa Xamarin Meetup Recap

I had the great pleasure of attending the Xamarin user group in Tampa the other night.  Xamarin 3 was recently announced on May 28, 2014.  James Montemango, Developer Evangelist for Xamarin, delivered a killer online session for the Tampa Xamarin User Group. The folks at the meeting were very appreciative of the fact that James took the time to present to us.  We had a packed house at the AgileThought office to see all the new features of Xamarin 3. Wow. Everyone was blown away. I overheard one attendee saying on the very next day, he would pitch  to his boss to get Xamarin licenses for entire staff at his company. So, I guess it was a successful meeting! Special thanks go to Michael Stark for heading up the new group and organizing this meeting with James.


James Montemagno delivered a session to Tampa from Seattle on Wednesday night at the Tampa Xamarin User Group.


MVPs Kevin Wolf and yours truly, Russ Fustino were in the house.

James gave a quick overview of Xamarin and  covered the Xamarin Designer for iOS as well as Xamarin Studio & Visual Studio Enhancements.

Local developer,  Imaya Kumar, then showed off the new Xamarin Forms!


Imaya Kumar, Solution Architect Convene Technologies

Here are my notes from the meeting:

  • C# on 2.6 Billion devices! Yes, billion not million!
  • Xamarin 3 is the best release yet!
  • Xamarin Mission Statement: Make it fast, easy and fun to create apps.
  • The third year of the company was celebrated with a Birthday cake! Happy Birthday Xamarin!


Birthday Cake and Pizza were provided by Xamarin!

  • Xamarin is seeing explosive growth with strong recognition from the Gartner Magic Quadrant as a Visionary :


  • Xamarin has a test cloud for all of the different Android devices. Wow! So, now you don’t have to buy all sorts of Android devices to test with.



  • Users prefer to use Native apps that are fast, smooth and deliver a great experience. Hybrid apps typically don’t get good reviews. For example,  Facebook switched to a native interface and the downloads doubled.


  • F# and C# are supported.
  • New meaning to “write once and run anywhere”.  Shared C# backend  code is typically  %75 of the code, but  now the UI code can be sharable too, raising that number even higher!
  • All native API’s are supported and are made available to C# Developers.




  • Xamarin University is the quickest way to become a Mobile Developer? Numerous classes in all time zones are available 6 days a week with live training.

Major elements in Xamarin 3

  • Xamarin Designer for iOS
  • Xamarin Studio & Visual Studio Enhancements
  • Easy code sharing
  • Xamarin.Forms

Xamarin Designer

  • iOS provides and intuitive interface for developing iOS apps. For example, when you double click on an item in the designer it opens a code windows for the default event handler, etc.
  • Comprehensive editor, auto layout, etc.
  • iOS6 and iOS7 are both supported
  • Works on Windows and Mac

Xamarin Studio

  • Handy for those that don’t’ have Visual Studio and the interface has been improved. NuGet Package manager along with integration with Xamarin Component Store provides ease of access to many libraries.
  • Easy assess to solution
  • Main panel has new information from Xamarin, blogs, etc.

Visual Studio and Xamarin Studio

Easy code sharing

  • Shared project support
  • Editing can be in the context of the editing container. For example,  Android code is grayed out when in the iOS context.


  • Same project can be opened in both VS and XS
  • Build Story Boards to provide app functionality
  • iOS has native calls for face detection and sepia color editing, since 100 percent of the calls are available in Xamarin, this is no problem.
  • Custom Controls can be built as well
  • Screen shots of sample custom control, to crop and apply sepia filter


Auto Crop (uses automatic face detection in iOS): provides real time update in designer.


Sepia filter:


Xamarin Forms:

Besides the Xamarin Birthday cake, Xamarin Forms was the topic I was the most excited about! Can you imagine using shared code for multiple platforms. Wow!


  • Build native UI’s for iOS, Android and Windows Phone from a single shared C# codebase
  • uses XAML like code for the Xamarin compiler

With Xamarin Forms you can…

  • build the entire app with Xamarin Forms…
  • or use this to prototype, leaving the door open to incorporate  further platform specific features…
  • or take an existing project and add a new page, build you don’t want to do that three times

Pages, Layouts and Controls oh my!

  • Controllers are provided for pages using Master Detail , navigation, tabbed pages and more
  • Layouts are provided for stack, Absolute, relative, grid and more
  • Controls, controls and more controls. Being a former developer evangelist for control vendor, this is huge!




I am about to update my Tull Tribute Windows Phone app (to be renamed Jethro Tull, which is endorsed with Tull assets). There is no doubt in my mind when porting to iOS and Android, I will be using Xamarin to to this.

If you missed the meeting, don’t worry… here are links to the deck and a recording of the announcement of Xamarin 3. The video features Xamarin’s Nat Friedman, CEO and Co-Founder, Miguel de Icaza, CTO and Co-Founder and James Montemagno, DE.


See more details of the Xamarin 3 Announcement:
Download Xamarin:
Webinar recording:
Webinar slides: