The public beta download of Big Screen Contacts for Vista Media Center
(V0.9) has just been released on my site.
As the name suggests – this program allows you Browse, View and Search your Windows Contacts directory in via the Vista Media Center 10′ interface (and allows you to import your contacts from Microsoft Outlook 2003/2007 – or from Windows Mail) – from the comfort of your loungeroom.
This application is developed using MCPL (Media Center Presentation Layer) – so it will work only via Vista Media Center.
I initially released an earlier version of this program to a small handfull of beta testers back in mid October – however due to some serious bugs in Windows Contacts (the CSV Import functionality crashed if you were sourcing CSV data directly from Outlook) – I though it best to wait until the Vista RTM release. Luckily – this all seems to have been fixed now (well I tested it with Outlook 2003) – so I decided it was ready for the general public to have a play with.
Although in my other Big Screen addins, I have generally tried out a few different look/feel’s - the UX in this program is aimed to be very similar to the Vista Media Center shell (similar layout, button and menu styles). I added an additional ‘original’ Widget - which is a filter/view panel (which sits underneath the main list) – that folds away (in 3d) when it is not focused. (cool huh?)..
Anyhow here’s some links for this product (and where to get it) –
Please note that this trial version is hardcoded to expire at the end of January 2007
(to allow for a full version for the official consumer launch of Vista). I intend to eventually sell this product to the masses – however for the time being (well next couple of months) – you can try it out for free.
.. and here’s a few screenshots to get you exicited (see the links above for lots more information/screenshots) – and no Bill Gates is not one of my personal contacts (and no thats not his personal phonenumber either). Also note that these screenshots are from the previous version – so there’s a few new changes (such as XX of YY type list counters at the bottom of the main screen and the search results) :