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CodePlex Project Wants Developers to 'Live' Fast

"Live in a Box," a project launched earlier this year on Microsoft's CodePlex open source site, aims to build up a repository of code and sample apps.

Development shop managers looking to get their people up to speed on the Windows Live platform might want to try thinking inside the box for a change.

"Live in a Box," a project launched earlier this year on Microsoft's CodePlex open source site, aims to build up a repository of code and sample apps, allowing developers to get a quick rundown of Live's suite, which encompasses searching, mapping, messaging and other Web capabilities.

Microsoft announced a major initiative to get developers building on top of the platform at last year's MIX 2006 trade show, but despite flurries of interest around product and documentation releases, a significant community of Live developers has yet to take root.

When the Microsoft blogging client Live Writer was released in January, "there was a massive flurry of plug-ins that got created because we were actually being given the chance to really customize the program and allow it to do the things that we, as users, wanted it to do," says independent Live enthusiast Scott Lovegrove.

Live in a Box is not an official Redmond initiative, although a group of mostly Microsoft staffers created it.

Lovegrove, a U.K.-based software test engineer who's writing a development guide for Windows Live Writer, says the CodePlex project provides essentially the same help getting started with Live's many APIs that he and three other enthusiasts do at their LiveSide.net forum.

Download Live in a Box at Codeplex.com/liveinabox.
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