HTML and CSS Reference
Figure 13-9, instead, shows the small tile. As you can see in Figure 13-9, now the context menu of
the application's tile also includes buttons to turn on and off live notifications.
FIGURE 13-9 The small tile of the application with its context menu.
More advanced features of Live tiles
The two exercises discussed in the chapter show basic features of Live tiles and are enough to
get developers started. However, the feature list of tiles doesn't end here. In particular, you can
add an expiration to notifications so that Live tiles are automatically turned off when a given
time is reached. This is particularly useful when the application needs to display data in the
form of reminders. In addition, you can associate the content of tiles with background agents
so that the content is updated in the background even when the application is not running.
A background agent is a piece of code that doesn't have a user interface but runs periodically
under the control of the operating system. By using a background agent, an application can
retrieve data asynchronously and push updates to the tiles even without displaying its own user
In this chapter, you learned about Live tiles. Live tiles are a unique feature of Windows 8 that
applications can use to display information to the user right from the Start screen. Any Windows Store
application is assigned a tile upon installation; by using some ad hoc code, you can give life to the tile
and make it receive and display application information.