Geeks With Blogs

News Bob Taco Industries is an ISV focused on game and app development for Microsoft platforms headed up by Michael B. McLaughlin. Mike is a Microsoft Visual C++ MVP (previously an XNA/DirectX MVP from 2011-2013), a developer, a writer, a consultant, and a retired lawyer. If you're a developer who is just getting started, consider checking out the BTI website's section for developers for links to code samples and other helpful sites.
Bob Taco Industries Blogging Division C++ Posts about C++ programming aimed at .NET programmers looking to learn C++11 (including the Standard Library) and C++/Cx (Component Extensions) for Windows Metro style programming.
Version 1.1 of the Windows Store DirectX Game Template is out!
Just a few minutes ago I uploaded version 1.1 of the Windows Store DirectX Game Template (WSDXGT) to the Visual Studio Gallery. If you already have it installed, it should show up as an update the next time you restart Visual Studio 2012 unless you’ve disabled update notifications (if it doesn’t show up but should, let me know; I forgot to keep a copy of VS 2012 with the 1.0 installed so I couldn’t test that myself this time). This release is just a simple addition of several classes that make XAML ......

Posted On Saturday, April 6, 2013 8:54 PM

I’m a Visual C++ MVP!
As many of you may have heard, Microsoft is in the process of retiring the XNA/DirectX MVP award over the next year. Though it is sad that the award category is going away, I understand Microsoft’s reason and it makes a lot of sense. They continue to have a deep commitment to gaming technologies and to game development, and they do still love indie developers (though at times that might not come through as clearly as we’d like). My Microsoft MVP award period starts on April 1st (it’s not an April ......

Posted On Monday, April 1, 2013 11:50 AM

Windows Store DirectX Game Template on the Visual Studio Gallery
I’ve at last finished converting the Windows Store DirectX C++ Sample Base (aka BaseWin8Direct3DApp) into a proper project template. Or, in this case, a multi-project project template. I then packaged that up into a VSIX file which I’ve posted to the Visual Studio Gallery as the Windows Store DirectX Game Template. Once installed (and yes, it works just fine with the free Visual Studio 2012 Express for Windows 8), you can create new projects based off of it to your hearts content. See the Getting ......

Posted On Thursday, March 28, 2013 11:41 PM

Windows Store C++ DirectX Bloom Sample released (and other samples updated)
At long last, I’ve finished the Bloom sample. You can get it here: http://www.bobtacoindustrie... It is a near replica of the XNA Bloom sample written in C++ using DirectXTK and my Windows Store DirectX C++ Sample base. It’s large (almost 15 MB) due to the TGA texture files that the tank model uses. This release includes the version of DirectXTK released February 22, 2013. As always, any questions, comments, suggestions, and bug reports are welcome and ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 27, 2013 12:58 AM

Pixel Perfect Collision Sample - Improved!
One part I wasn’t quite satisfied with in the original pixel perfect collision sample was the need to render the image in order to extract its data. Shawn Hargreaves suggested that I skip the middle man (at least for a few common formats), copy the data directly from the texture and perform CPU-side conversion to eliminate the render step and avoid spinning up the GPU rendering pipeline. I thought that was an excellent idea, so that’s what I’ve done. (Shawn just provided the idea; if the code has ......

Posted On Wednesday, February 20, 2013 12:36 AM

C++ Pixel Perfect Collision Detection Sample (and Base Sample updated!)
One of the more popular series of samples for XNA was the collision detection series. Especially the 2D pixel perfect collision and transformed pixel perfect collision. So as my first sample, I’ve replicated them. But since I don’t want to maintain more samples than I need to, they are all in a single sample. Everything is heavily commented and power just went out here for some reason but I’m happy to respond to questions about the sample, so feel free to ask away in the comments and I’ll get to ......

Posted On Thursday, February 14, 2013 6:21 PM

Windows Store DirectX C++ Sample Base
I’ve been working on this on and off for over a year now (having essentially restarted entirely in the latter half of 2012). At last it is finished. I give you a Windows Store DirectX C++ Sample Base. It’s something you could build a game on top of. It’s something you could build a sample on top of. It passes WACK testing (or did until I reverted to the default icons anyway) and runs properly on my Surface RT as well as my other x64-based computers. It handles rotation. Lets you choose a fixed back ......

Posted On Thursday, January 31, 2013 11:14 AM

C++ Succinctly now available!
Over the summer I worked with SyncFusion to create an eBook based off of my C# to C++ guide for their free Succinctly Series of eBooks. Today the result, C++ Succinctly, was published for download. It is a free (registration required; they make tools and libraries for .NET development so you might get an occasional email from them – I’ve been signed up for a few months and have had maybe 3 emails total so it’s not horrible super spam or anything ) and you can download it as a PDF or a Kindle .MOBI ......

Posted On Friday, September 7, 2012 6:20 PM

Defaulting the HLSL Vertex and Pixel Shader Levels to Feature Level 9_1 in VS 2012
I love Visual Studio 2012. But this is not a post about that. This is a post about tweaking one particular parameter that I’ve found a bit annoying. Disclaimer: You will be modifying important MSBuild files. If you screw up you will break your build tools. And maybe your computer will catch fire. I’m not responsible. No warranties or guaranties of any sort. This info is provided “as is”. By default, if you add a new vertex shader or pixel shader item to a project, it will be set to build with shader ......

Posted On Friday, September 7, 2012 5:49 PM

C# to C++–A Somewhat Short Guide (Update 1)
Last updated: 2012-02-14 This is a big post – over 12200 16600 words – and so I’ve decided to make it available as a PDF download, which you can get here: http://www.bobtacoindustrie... It has bookmarks for easier navigation along with a Table of Contents and page numbers. I expect that I will revise this from time to time and welcome any suggestions, feedback, and (especially) corrections. If so I will update the Last updated field at the top and will ......

Posted On Tuesday, February 14, 2012 1:52 PM

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