The winners of the Nokia Imaging Wiki Competition 2013Q3 are super-stars of the Nokia Developer Community. This is the second article in a short series about our winners and their entries.
This article demonstrates how to apply a real time “8-bit effect” camera effect (a picture composed of smaller images) – delivered in an app that can run on both Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone 8 devices.
The article won for a number of reasons – the technical solution (using XNA/Monogame) is a clever way of improving the refresh rate, and allows the solution to work on both Windows Phone 7 and 8, and also on lower-end devices. It also presents a filter effect not supplied in the Imaging SDK, and we think it’s pretty cool! This is a bit more “hard core” than some of the other entries, but is still understandable and useful for others.
Q. Tell us a little about yourself
I am an independent C# developer, interested in mobile platforms and the game development. I’m currently studying the last year of computer graphics and interaction at Czech Technical University in Prague. I am an author of a series of articles about XNA and Windows Phone development (written mostly in Czech language).
I have helped to build a great Windows Phone community here; I used to organize lots of lectures and hands-on-labs for our developers. I was awarded twice as a Microsoft MVP, in the XNA and Visual C# category. Currently we are preparing a next year of two-day MS Fest conference that will be held in three Czech cities.
Q. How long have you been developing for Nokia platforms?
I have always liked Nokia as a company since my first phone – the legendary Nokia 3310. I like the focus on a great photography today, even in a low light places. I also like that Nokia provides lots of useful apps and tools that are still not available in the Windows Phone OS itself. I have also created a couple of fan videos from our Nokia Lumia launch events last year.
I started developing with Nokia when you moved to Windows Phone 7. The ability to make 3D games in the XNA Framework for mobile devices was a killer feature for me! I made a 3D game engine for Windows Phone as my Bachelor’s thesis; you can see the video here.
Currently I am still focusing on Windows Phone and Windows 8 development. Thanks to Xamarin and MonoGame Framework I can continue with XNA even though Microsoft are no longer supporting it. It should also be possible to port my games to other platforms, but I still like the simplicity and ease of development of the Windows Phone the most.
Q. Have you developed many apps for Nokia devices?
During my studies at university I created a game HexaLines (written in pure WinForms and GDI+). The game looked nice and was quite popular. My brother and I have now finished a new version for Windows Phone 7 and 8 which contains better graphics and new challenges.
I have made a couple of simple games for Windows Phone. Some were made as a “support tool” for my talks (Galaxy Jet), created for our local Microsoft and Nokia competitions (Glow Arkanoid, Handwrite Notes), or made at some hackathons with my friends (Star Jumper).
I have also worked on two games for Skoda Auto a.s. (Vroomstar).
Q. How did you come up with the idea for your competition entry?
Last summer I was on a developer summer campus in Hungary and worked on a nice photo game (that unfortunately was not released): From it I learned some of the techniques that contributed to my winning article. Now every developer can learn how to efficiently read a live stream from the camera and how to create this nice 8-bit effect.