June 2003 - Posts
After Don Box's WS presentation it was time for lunch. I got to eat with Stephen and Ruth Walthers and Julie Lerman! Of course, I knew all about these three, but hadn't yet had the opportunity to meet them. I chatted with Stephen about the CSK 1.0 and with Julie and Ruth about INETA and my involvement with the FWDNUG. BTW: The Chocolate Cake at lunch sucked!
Next up was a Yukon session - it was basically a slideshow presentation. Yes, the upcoming features of Yukon are way cool, but one of the things I was most looking forward to at Tech-Ed 2003 was some demo's of Yukon. I'll take their word for it that Yukon does really exists :), but I was disappointed that I didn't see a demo.
During the break I met Duncan MacKenzie and Kent Sharkey for the first time. Duncan and Kent work on the MSDN team as Content Strategists. We were in the SQL Server and Mobility lounge and I was cracking my obligatory lame Canadian jokes at Eli. Later on Duncan mentions that he's from Canada - Doh! With my luck I'll find out that Kent is Canadian too :p=
I next headed out to the "Coding ADO.NET Data Access Solutions" session with Duncan. My biggest complaint with the Session Mini-Guide is that they don't include speaker information - I was presently suprised to find that Bill Vaughn was the speaker. I've got one of his ADO.NET books and was looking forward to hear what he had to say he didn't dissapoint. Some good tips from his presentation:
- Don't need to pass parameter information to a Stored Procedure if they have a default value specified in the Stored Proc.
- If you are using Ad Hoc queries instead of Stored Procedures you can still take advantage of Parameters like so:
commandtext = "Select firstname, lastname from authors where firstname = @lastname"
- Make sure to explicitly close your connections - don't rely on the Garbage Collector!
I also took the opportunity to ask Duncan an ADO.NET question I wanted to know the answer to. If I want to return one value back from a Stored Proc, what is the quickest way to do it: Return Value, Output Parameter, or ExecuteScalar? I was happy to find out that I was doing it the fastest way - using a Return Parameter. The output parameter is the next fastest, with ExecuteScalar being the slowest due to the overhead of having to still return a recordset, even though that recordset simply returns the first column of the first row.
Next I headed to the Exhibition Hall and met some more great folks at the INETA booth including Bill Evjan.
I can't forget to mention Stacy Giard from Microsoft - I spotted her near the Exhibition Hall earlier in the day and had a quick chat. Stacy is a great gal - I owe here big time - she helped me with my last minute plans to attend Tech-Ed.
So, I *finally* found some free time to get around to my poor, neglected Blog. It's been hard for me to find the time to blog as my free net time has been spent working on the issues that *conveniently* popped up at my day job - ack! But, finally here it is:
Yeah - I'm at Tech-Ed!
Marcie (aka Datagrid Girl) and Eli are staying with me and we started the trek from Fort Worth to Dallas early this morning. We arrived after the keynote and got registered. Of course, we all brought our own laptop and laptop bag - not thinking about the cool Tech-Ed 2003 goodie bag we would receive. So, we then proceeded to switch out our bags for the Tech-Ed bag and wade through all the SWAG we got. While we were doing that Rob Caron and Paul Wilson stopped by to say "Hi". I was really excited to meet Paul - I am a big fan of his templating techniques and even presented on them at a FWDNUG meeting. I later found that Paul mentioned me in his Blog - cool!
The first session I attended was Don Box's presentation on Web Services. Some interesting stuff, plus I got my first look at InfoPath. Don has my vote for the most interesting slide deck presentation I've seen to date: an XML doc in an IE window.
I'm off to the Developer Party with Eli... Day 1 Part II to follow later...
At the last minute I've gotten the chance to attend Tech-Ed. Besides the obvious benefits of attending Tech-Ed - I'd go into depression (ok, not quite that bad) at the thought of missing out on this opportunity to attend such a huge Microsoft Event that's happening in the same city that I live it. Thankfully, now I won't have to spend the entire week moaping around because everyone else is having fun while I'm slaving away at work.
I am "planning" on posting after every session, but we all know how that goes...
Off to Tech-Ed!