A Computer Vision(ary) competition - part 3

In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series I started the comparison of three major Image recognition and classification APIs - Microsoft Cognitive Services Computer Vision, Google Cloud Vision and IBM Watson Visual Recognition

In today’s part I will analyze the way we use the APIs by looking at the requests / response structures and checking the performance (time and size). We compared the efficiency and accuracy in the part 2 so now we will just focus on how easy it is to consume the response rather than how accurate it is.

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Demystifying HoloLens project XAML vs D3D

Most of the HoloLens development guidance you’ll find out there, will tell you that when you build you HoloLens app from Unity you must select D3D and not XAML in the project build settings.

You might think (as I did for a while) that it’s very obvious why and that this makes the app run in 3D rather than a 2D app. But that’s not true, the 2D vs 3D aspect of a HoloLens app built with Unity lies in the Virtual Reality Enabled flag that you can find in the Player Settings window. You need to set that to Windows Holographic for your app to behave like a nice volumetric, 3D application.

So, what’s the difference between D3D and XAML you ask ?

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Visual Studio 2015 Tips & Tricks

I’ve been using Visual Studio daily for a very long time now and I think I learnt a thing or two about getting the most out of it and be as productive as I can be.
In today’s post I will present a few of them that I find myself using a lot and I find extremely useful but are less known (based on my observations)

The tips below apply to Visual Studio 2015, but some of them are available in older versions as well.

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A Computer Vision(ary) competition - part 2

After a short introduction and high level features comparison in part 1, let’s look at the APIs in action and see how they perform on some images. Make sure to check part 3 for an analysis of the API itself.

We’ll run some images thought the interactive demo sites of each service and list the results

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A Computer Vision(ary) competition

I recently got interested in exploring the new wave of Computer Vision APIs out there, see what they can do and how to use them in my apps.
I obviously knew about Microsoft’s Cognitive Services (Computer Vision API) former Project Oxford but I wanted to see who else is in the space.
I picked the two most obvious competitors and decided to do a quick comparison: Google Cloud Vision, IBM Watson Visual Recognition.
So I explored all the options and tried to compare them at a high level.

–Update: Check part 2 for a more in depth feature comparison and part 3 for an analysis of the API itself.

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Microsoft Bot Framework FormFlow Confirm

FormFlow is an awesome feature of Microsoft Bot Builder designed to let you easily create a form filling experience in your bot. There’s a lot of good official documentation but here’s one trick I found by checking the actual code (which it actually open source on GitHub )

In this article I’m going to focus on the Confirmation message that should be displayed at the end of the flow.

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Open PDFs in a converted iOS app

One of the apps I ported from iOS to Windows 10 using WinObjC was using the web view to open up pdf files that were deployed with the app. While this works fine in iOS it does not port well to Win10 since the Edge browser does not support (yet ?) opening up a PDF file directly.

I’ve thought of a few approaches like use another web browser component - Awesomium or render the PDF yourself using the Windows.Data.PDF classes, but these require extensive changes to your code base which is not something you want in this process.

However, I found a couple of solutions that worked out.

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Links of the week (Jun 19)

New features in the Windows Bridge for iOS

XAML Animations with Attached Properties

.NET open source contributions map

What’s new for UWP apps on Xbox One - June release

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Error opening converted iOS App

I ran into a strange error recently when I tried to open one of my converted iOS Windows Bridge for iOS.
The project would not load and there was not much of an error message, until I checked the output windows.

Error: The imported project "C:\_CODES\WinObjC\msvc\starboard.props" was not found. Confirm that the path in the <Import> declaration is correct, and that the file exists on disk.

At this point I realized that I was opening this on another machine and that on this machine the WinObjC SDK was not installed in the same path as the other one.


Edit project file find the reference to WINOBJC_SDK_ROOT and change it to the proper location


As mentioned in my other article make sure that you install the SDK in a path that does not contain any spaces in its name.

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My first Channel 9 videos

As the BUILD Tour came to Toronto last Friday, I was given the opportunity to record a couple of videos for the Bonus section of the event.
So, along with my colleague Jeremy we talked about a couple of topics related to HoloLens development.

BONUS: An Intro to the HoloLens Experience

BONUS: Designing for Spatial Variation

That was a blast and I hope I get to do it again soon.

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