WP7 Root Tools Released, Homebrew Backup App In The Works

If you’re a homebrew Windows Phone developer with a thirst for the ability to utilize root-level features of the OS in building your apps, then you’re in luck. Windows Phone hacker Heathcliff74 released the WP7 Root Tools 0.9 last week, which is essentially a set of tools that includes a full blown registry editor, file system browser, and certificate injection capabilities.

The bigger news, however, is the accompanying APIs, which will allow you to access the very root-level features that the tool utilizes. One example of an app that’s able to exist thanks to these APIs is the Complete Backup app, developed by Rafael Rivera and David Golden. The root tools released by Heathcliff74 has allowed Rivera to finally create a functioning backup app, following a previous failed hackathon attempt to do so.

If you’ve been eager to get your Windows Phone data properly backed up, then you won’t have to wait for too much longer. They just have to work on a few other things (such as a restoration app), but it’s coming soon. And on top of this, it will be open-source and available on GitHub.

Something cool about the WP7 Root Tools is that homebrew apps utilizing these root-level features will require explicit authorization from users to function; they will have to independently mark the app as “Trusted”. This is put in place to at least help alleviate the quality concerns in using homebrew software.

In conclusion, this is pretty good news for the homebrew/Windows Phone enthusiasts out there. It would be nice if Windows Phone had a proper backup and restore implementation to boot, though.

Play Skyrim On Your Calculator!

That is, if your calculator is a Texas Instruments 84 Plus Graphing Calculator, of course. Intrepid YouTube user no9sniper has found a way to satisfy that burning itch to keep killing dragons, giants and tons of wild wolves while you are in class (and away from your PC/360/PS3 which is still warm from yesterday’s long Skyrim session) with a homebrew version of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim that runs completely on the Ti-84 plus, complete with lo-fi graphics and a nonexistent storyline.

The game, from the video posted on YouTube, looks similar to the legacy Elder Scrolls games, with simple combat and some customization. You choose your name and your race (Imperial, Khajit or Orc) (Sadly no elves or argonians) and set out on a journey as a warrior into the snowy and whitey world with the greatest graphics card in the world at your disposal (read: your imagination). I initially thought it would be a rogue-like game but it turned out to be nicely designed with some retro graphics elements. Much fun!

I honestly have no idea how much time was invested by no9sniper to create this tiny distraction for class, but it sure as hell speaks volumes about this person’s perseverance! Kudos!