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November 2014

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I recently purchased a MacBook Air so I can work on projects when on the road. With the recent updates to ASP.NET and being available on all platforms (Windows, OSX, Linux), I wanted to bring the same development experience on the OSX (currently on Yosemite).

This post will provide a quick start on being able to write ASP.NET vNext apps on OSX.

KVM

I started by bringing in the KVM (K Version Manager) which is used to build and run ASP.NET provided on this link. KVM is used to manage and get the runtime (KRE – K Runtime Environment) for .NET.

The way to bring this in is to use Homebrew which is a package manager for OSX much like Chocolatey is for Windows.

Installing OmniSharp

The next step is to install Sublime Text 3 if you don’t have this app yet. Once you have the text editor, the final step is to install OmniSharp which is an open source cross platform project that brings in Intellisense and code completion to Sublime, Vim, Atom, etc. This gives you the ability to be productive much like being in the Visual Studio environment when developing in ASP.NET/C#.

Omnisharp brings in multiple projects with each specific to a text editor. One of which is Kulture which is a project for Sublime. I personally had an issue finding the package control plugin (cmd+shift+p) to install Kulture in Sublime highlighted here.

If the package control doesn’t come up, launch the Sublime console by typing ctrl+[back tick] then paste this in (credit to this site).

import urllib.request,os,hashlib; h = '7183a2d3e96f11eeadd761d777e62404' + 'e330c659d4bb41d3bdf022e94cab3cd0'; pf = 'Package Control.sublime-package'; ipp = sublime.installed_packages_path(); urllib.request.install_opener( urllib.request.build_opener( urllib.request.ProxyHandler()) ); by = urllib.request.urlopen( 'http://packagecontrol.io/' + pf.replace(' ', '%20')).read(); dh = hashlib.sha256(by).hexdigest(); print('Error validating download (got %s instead of %s), please try manual install' % (dh, h)) if dh != h else open(os.path.join( ipp, pf), 'wb' ).write(by) 

Creating an ASP.NET app

Lastly, we will bring in Yeoman using NPM (node package manager) which is a command line tool to quickly generate an application.

npm install -g yo

The next command is to bring in the node modules to generate the actual ASPNET app.

npm install -g generator-aspnet

After installing Yeoman, we can then create the app by:

yo aspnet

This basically initiates the app creation process and asks basic questions such as the name of the app and the type of web application that you’re building (ie MVC, Web Application, etc.)

Quick Sublime commands

To bring in the Sublime command palette, use (cmd+shift+p) then select Run K Commands or F5 to bring in the k and kpm stuff which are quick access to commands to run the server (k kestrel), restore packages (kpm restore), etc.

After generating the new project, the first thing is to restore packages which was mentioned above. After that finishes, to build the project (cmd+b) to make sure that there’s no error.

Finally, run the app using the k kestrel (OSX specific) command in the command pallette then browse localhost:5004 in your browser to view the ASP.NET application.

I love startups and I’ve always been fascinated with the ideas, how things gets developed and executed, passionate individuals, and all the way down to venture capitalists and funding. Obviously, ideas are very important but the truth is, it’s all about finding the right people to execute on those ideas and furthermore build upon the initial idea. Having the right team, talent and drive (including luck– being at the right place at the right time and knowing the right people) puts you on the right track. Ideas by itself doesn’t mean much if you can’t execute, period.

I’ve read the book, "Lean Startup" and have pretty much spent a lot of time understanding the ideas behind having a LEAN and MVP (minimum viable product). It seems like most (if all) startups these days uses this LEAN product development approach which makes a lot of sense for prototyping ideas and getting quick feedback from consumers. I won’t be getting into the details here but here’s some good documentaries on startups recently that I found motivational. If you’re into building products, startups or interested in starting your own tech business, I highly recommend these.

  • Indie Game.
    This documentary is not entirely about the startup itself but the people behind the Indie games companies. It gives the audience the opportunity to see the game developers and their perspective on the whole development process.

  • Startup kids.
    The documentary gives you a glimpse on the new young breed of entepreneurs in the tech industry. Since building products on the web requires small or no funding these days, anyone with the passion and the right ideas can ship a product with minimal overhead costs (except time). It highlights the young successful entepreneurs of this generation and what it took to launch a product.

  • Ctrl+Alt+Compete.
    A documentary created by Microsoft. This is very similar to startup kids except that it’s focused on a much larger context of startups. It includes product pitches, interviews of founders, enterpreneurs, investors and people who are involved behind this industry.

I hope that you find these films motivating, refreshing and informational. I will keep this updated with new titles as I come across them. Let me know if you know of other titles that are within this category.