October 2003 - Posts
Man, this past week just flew by. I really thought I had blogged more about it. There were a few times where I went to post from the Internet Alley, and I stepped away from the machine for a few seconds to talk to someone, and it automatically logged me out. Oh well, I'll give your aggregators a rest and bring the blogosphere up to speed on my exploits next week. I must say that it was probably one of the best experiences of my life, and I thoroughly enjoyed meeting everyone that I did. I met some outstanding individuals that really have a passion for this stuff, and it was great to talk and share experiences.
I see people are posting PDC wrapups, and describing what PDC was all about. Having just attended my first major developer experience, I can say that, for me, this year's theme sad it all: “Make The Connection”. It wasn't about new technologies or sessions, it was about meeting people, swapping developer horror stories over a few beers, and planning together for the future. It was about the random meetings that take place and the really cool conversations that follow.
Perfect example. Day Two saw keynotes from Eric Rudder and Gordon Mangione. I had excellent seats in the fron section, and who happened to sit down right next to me but Erin Joyce, Managing Editor for InternetNews.com A week earlier, she had wrote a fabulous store about blogging and its effect on the next version of Windows. It was a great article. Well, we introduced ourselves, and were both surprised to find out who each other was. She said she loved the LonghornBlogs.com site, and we talked for about 30 minutes during the keynote about various things. Afterwards, I found myself quoted in her article on WinFS.
Tons of other ridiculously cool conversations happened at PDC as well. I spent an hour with the woman from Microsoft Research that built the really cool blog application that was demoed on Day 3. I had some great conversations on Wednesday night at the Wilshire Grand that went until almost 3am. I talked with the Segway guys, and the guy the wrote the Google Toolbar (which is now running on my machine after I finally gave in). I talked with Chris Anderson (he's hilarious), Chris Sells (man that guys is tall), DonXml (yes that was really what was on his badge), Steve Maine (helluva guy), Rory Blythe (who had an excellent answer as to how the Apollo moon landing was the product of the Porn industry), and Kirk Allen Evans (next time I'll buy YOU a drink).
So, what did I learn from PDC 2003? Next year, I will be attending 3 sessions tops, and I'll spend the rest of my time walking around meeting people. Then, I'll order the conference DVD, watch the Powerpoints that are uploaded and available to the public, and blog like crazy. And it will be the best $2000 I will have ever spent.
Scoble got linked on MSNBC.com in an article about blogging. Microsoft recenly fired an intern who lapsed judgement when posting information he was privy to a few days ago. Gosh, I wonder why he got fired? Maybe because he was dumb?
Robert Scoble is probably one of the best examples of corporate weblogging out there. Love him or hate him, he bypasses the PR machine and effectively engages people on both sides of the Microsoft fence. He has the common sense to know what to blog and what not to blog, and it makes him extremely effective.
Go check it out.
It's Official! GenX.NET 3.0 is complete and has been released to the public! Check it out today at http://www.genxdotnet.com. GenX.NET is the first DTS engine available for the .NET Framework. Using an application architecture that will be used heavily in ASP.NET “Whidbey”, GenX.NET 3.0 is extremely extensible, while still being simple to use. It features 100% integration with ADO.NET, and supports ANY ADO.NET Data Provider. You can format and output data into a variery of ways, and GenX.NET has the most features for your buck of any other component available.
The download comes with a built-in 30-day trial, comprehensive documentation, and a detailed sample application.
The first 25 customers will also get a free copy of our next server control, due out next week. More details on that after PDC. So what are you waiting for? Try it out and tell me what you think.
Yesterday may very well have been the coolest day of my life. It started out with a chance encounter with Erin Joyce, columnist for InternetNews.com. She wrote a killer article on blogging and Longhorn last week, and by pure chance, sat next to me at Eric Rudder's keynote. As Paschal pointed out, she quoted me for her article on WinFS. (I'll cut her some slack even if she got my company name wrong. That was quite interesting, and she's a really interesting lady.
So the morning was spent trying to get access to my e-mail. After I got frustrated with the issues with ISA, I decided to go try out a Segway. That was so freakin cool. It's so natural how you interact with it, I just hope someday we can make computers that easy.
Lunchtime rolled around, and I had lunch with Christopher Brumme, one of the best documentation writers....err....bloggers at Microsoft. I found out that he didn't know about blogging until the day before he started, and he has never seen a blog outside of his own. That's ok though, because this guy is responsible for the future of Microsoft, so he obviously doesn't have much time to surf the blogosphere. If I had a choice between his really cool posts and him surfing the blogs, I'd rather have him post ;).
The evening saw a surprise visit from the SimpleGeek, who did an outstanding job at the Allchin Keynote. He's an awesome guy, and we had a very lively chat about API compatibility in Longhorn. Got to meet a whole bunch of really awesome people who are excited about Longhorn as I am, and it was great. I can't wait to see what today has in store. Tonight should be a really killer party at Universal Studios.
There are still a lot of people that I haven't been able to meet yet, so if I haven't seen you yet, please look for me. Today I'm in a gray collarred shirt with green and blue stripes. I'd love to chat with you (Doug Seven where are you??!!? :) ).
OK, I braved the Grayhound, and am going on 2 hours sleep, but I'm here, and I have a few thoughts about what I've seen so far...
Declarative UIs with XAML looks really freakin cool. Scoble wasn't kidding when he said that HTML was a first-class citizen in Longhorn.
Some of teh stuff I have seen is amazing.... UI generation with Adobe AfterEffects, great sample apps from Amazon... the Indigo communications framework.... all outstanding components that I will be talking about at great length in the near future.
What struck me as interesting was the direction Microsoft is going with .NET. As far as I can tell, after Whidbey it will be called WinFX. I can imagine that is because it won't be so much of a framework anymore since Windows is built on top of it. Should be a very interesting next few years.
More substantial information coming soon. Don't forget the Server Controls and Weblogger BOF sessions later this evening. Can't wait to see you guys there. Already met Kirk Allen Evans and Clemens Vasters and a bunch of others. Looking forward to an awesome evening. Now I have to go get my room key so I can go back to the hotel, shower and nap. L8r. More on my crazy trip story later.
My flight was rescheduled for Tuesday morning, which means I'm screwed. Gonna get on a Greyhound tonight if I can't get a rental car. If you're stranded in Phoenix, there is a bus leaving tonight at 1:45am, and gets in at 8:50am. Call me at 480-699-1046 or my cell 480-710-2770. Lets see if we can get this taken care of... I have to be there in the morning.
If you're a speaker at PDC and you're currently stranded somewhere, call Robert Scoble on his cell.... (408) 314-8233.
Due to wildfires, LAX is currently closed. If anyone is in-transit, you will probably be delayed. I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to get there.... I may be renting a car. If any of you get diverted to Phoenix, call me at 480-699-1046 or 480-710-2770 and, depending on what I decide to do, we may drive out (only about 6 hours from Phoenix).
US Airport Status, Southwest Regional Airport Status.
While there will be a lot of MS guys talking at PDC, and it will be a hige deal for everyone involved, let us not forget the thousands of MS employees who have worked tirelessly to bring the code, demos, and cool stuff that make up everything that is being released this week. These guys are definitely underappreciated and deserve our thanks.
OK, now that I've FINALLY got everything squared away with my company stuff, my online store is finished, GenX.NET is moments away from launch, and my PDC plans are finalized... here's an update on what is going on next week. I'm really excited to meet all of you, and it should be a really great experience. So without further ado, here is what's going on RE: PDC.
- Clemens Vasters has released a new version of dasBlog. I'm extremely excited, because this release comes from a corroboration between Clemens and ScottW to allow dasBlog to interoperate with .Text. Many of the modofications in this release were designed specifically for LonghornBlogs.com, although they can be used for any blogging engine that correctly implements the MetaWeblogAPI. Clemens and ScottW will be talking about the process at the Weblogger BOF Monday night, which ought to be really exciting.
- Speaking of the Weblogger BOF, Greg Reinacker or NewsGator fame will have a bunch of free stuff to give away. Lucky BOF participants could win one of two free copies of NewsGator, and I think he said something about t-shirts too. I'll be giving away two free LonghornBlogs.com shirts... unfortunately they will not be here in time for me to give them away there, but I'll have them shipped directly to your house.
- Want a sneak peek on what's coming with the Whidbey Server Controls? Make sure you come to my VS.NET Whidbey: The Future of Server Controls session immediately before the Weblogger session. I'm going to be giving away copies of Interscape's newest server control (not yet released to the public), and we're going to discuss what control vendors hate the most and what we can do about it.
I know I'm missing something, but oh well. I'll be out there walking around, trying to meet as many of you as possible. If you see me (won't be that hard to miss, I'm 6'3”, and I'll probably be the youngest one there) make sure that you say hi. I'm really anxious to get out there and meet all of you.
I'm going back to my cave now, I have a lot of prepwork to get done. Still need to make some improvements to the store, and finish deploying version 2.1 of the company site. I'll see you all on Monday. Peace!
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