This article fulfills the First Challenge of CodeProject's Windows Azure Developer Challenge: set up a free trial Azure account and post an article outlining my idea.
In a previous lifetime, I was a professional database developer and loved the feeling of creating apps that just worked. I can't wait to experience once again the long hours, huge cups of caffeine, sleepless nights, the frustration of things that don't work, and the exhilaration of conquering that last stubborn bug.
(My entry in the Windows Azure Developer Challenge is a timetracking application. Details will follow in future Challenge articles.
Right now, all I have is a concept and a general outline. I'll take my basic concept and consider how it fits within the parameters of the five Challenges. Challenge deadlines, and my rusty skills, will impose limits on the number of features I can complete. So I'll need to spend some time in each Challenge defining and redefining the scope of my application and how it will address Challenge requirements.
I'm an iterative developer. My method is to define, develop, evaluate, refine. I'll need to control the temptation to continually improve individual features at the expense of the final application. What is the app's key function? What's critical to support that function within the scope of these Challenges? Which of the Challenges am I learning from scratch and how will that learning curve impact my schedule?
Points of Interest
Currently available time tracking apps are generally device-specific, and software that also allows consolidating the data for teams based on the clients or departments to be charged is generally expensive and bulky. Windows Azure offers a platform for device-independent time tracking apps with data stored in the cloud, which can then be queried using SQL Server and used to feed disparate backend systems in a fluid and flexible way.
First challenge completed: May 3, 2013.