Weaving the Windows Live Services into Your Web Site (Cont.)
Contoso ISV uses many of the Windows Live Services to build an online Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application. This Quick App glues together Silverlight Streaming, Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live Alerts, and Virtual Earth to demonstrate a business-focused Web application.
Tafiti uses Silverlight 1.0, Windows Live ID, and Live Search to present a highly immersive search experience.
Windows Live Messenger enables several features in Contoso ISV. The Windows Live Messenger IM Control drops right into the Web site. It lets visitors have instant messaging conversations with Contoso staff without leaving the home page (Figure 2).
Figure 2: Contoso ISV shows how to build a site that incorporates the Windows Live Messenger IM control.
Several Windows Live Services come into play when a customer schedules a meeting. Virtual Earth is integrated with Windows Live Messenger to schedule an appointment and get driving directions (Figure 3). When the sales staff schedules the appointment, the company representative automatically receives a Windows Live Alert notifying them of the new appointment.
Figure 3: Contoso ISV uses the Windows Live Messenger Activity SDK to integrate Virtual Earth and Windows Live Alerts with Messenger.
Contoso ISV also uses Silverlight Streaming to deliver the video content displayed on the home page. Silverlight Streaming offers free hosting of videos and interactive content. Windows Live hosts and streams the media, relieving developers of storage and scalability concerns.
To see this combination of Windows Live Services in action, go to http://contosoisv.mslivelabs.com.
Contoso Bicycle Club
Contoso Bicycle Club is a place for bicyclists to post photos and reports from their favorite rides. Despite the rich content displayed on the site, the application itself does not store any images or maps. All the photos, reports, and ride routes are hosted by Windows Live. It’s a great example of how you can glue Windows Live Services together into a complete Web site. The back end is handled by Windows Live; you only need to develop the presentation layer.
Windows Live Spaces stores most of the content for Contoso Bicycle Club. Members post a description of each new ride to the space at http://contosobicycleclub.spaces.live.com/. The blog posts include links to a map of the ride, directions, and a photo album-all hosted by Windows Live.
The route and directions for the ride come from Live Search Maps and Spaces hosts a photo album of the ride. The club Web site combines the data from these Windows Live APIs into an integrated view of the ride (Figure 4).
Figure 4: Contoso Bicycle Club mixes content from Windows Live Spaces with geo-tagged data from Live Search Maps to show the route of a bicycle ride.
Contoso Bicycle Club also has the “Bikes & Kit” section-a place for users to buy and sell their bicycles and gear. Windows Live Expo hosts the content for this section; the Quick App uses the Expo API to retrieve the list of items for sale.
This Quick App shows how you can develop a Web site and use Windows Live to store all the content. Explore the site and download the code at http://contosobicycleclub.mslivelabs.com.
More Quick Applications
You’ll find several other Quick Applications on the site. Each of them has full documentation, deployment instructions, and source code available for download. You can mix and match code from each one to create the site you want.
For all the Quick Applications, documentation, demos, webcasts, and source code, go to http://dev.live.com/QuickApps.