Had a great time at the Ann Arbor Day of .NET on Saturday. Lots of great speakers and topics. And chance to meet up with friends you usually only communicate with via email/twitter.
I presented "Getting up to speed with C# 3.5 — Just in time for 4.0!". There's still a lot of devs that are either stuck in .NET 2.0 or just now moving to .NET 3.5. This presentation gave highlights of a lot of the key features of 3.5. I had great questions from the audience. Afterwards, I talked with a few people who are just now getting in to 3.5 and they told me they had a lot of "A HA!" moments when something I said finally clicked and made sense from a code sample they had seen on the web. Thanks to all who attended!
A few people have asked me for the slides and demo. The slides were nothing more than a table of contents. 90% of the presentation was spent inside Visual Studio demo'ing new techniques. However, I have included it in the ZIP file with the sample solution. You can download it here.
Dennis Burton on MongoDB
I caught Dennis Burton's presentation on MongoDB. I was really interested in this one as I've missed the last few times Dennis had given it to local user groups. It was very informative and I want to spend some time learning more about MongoDB. I'm still an old-school relational guy, but I'm willing to investigate alternatives.
Brian Genisio on Prism
Since I'm not a Silverlight/WPF guy (yet), I wasn't sure this would interest me. But I talked with Brian for a couple of minutes before the presentation and he convinced me to catch it. And I'm glad he did. Prism looks like a very nice framework for "composable UI's" in Silverlight and WPF. I like the whole "dependency injection" feel to it. Nice job Brian!
I spent some time Saturday working on things for the upcoming GiveCamp (which is why I only caught a few sessions). Ann Arbor's Day of .NET and GiveCamp have both been held at Washtenaw Community College so I took some time (along with fellow GiveCamp planners Mike Eaton and John Hopkins) to check out the new location for Ann Arbor GiveCamp this year!
In the past, WCC has let us use the Business Education (BE) building for our GiveCamp's. But this year, they're moving us over to the Morris Lawrence (ML) building. Let me tell you – this is a step UP! In the BE building, we were spread across two floors and spread out into classrooms. Plus, our opening and closing ceremonies were held in the Liberal Arts (LA) building – a bit of a walk from the BE building.
In the ML building, we're together for the whole weekend. We've got a large open area (which can be sectioned off if needed) for everyone to work in:
Right next to that, we have a large area where we can set up tables and eat. And it helps that we have a wonderful view while eating (yes, that's a lake out there with a fountain):
The ML building also has showers (which we'll have access to!) and it's own auditorium for our opening and closing ceremonies.
All in all, this year's GiveCamp will be great! Stay tuned to the Ann Arbor GiveCamp website. We'll be looking for volunteers (devs, designers, PM's, etc…) soon!