Tech-Ed 2006 - Day 1

Thursday, 24 August 2006

The venue (Sydney Exhibition and Convention Centre) is quite good. It's a pleasant walk from Town Hall Train Station, so it is quite convenient, and the location is very pretty at Darling Harbour.

Food - In a word, "Below Average". Well that's two words, but you get the idea. I've been to quite a few Tech-Ed conferences now (missed the first one in Sydney, and the Canberra one), so I've seen how a number of different venues perform. At least they are generous in putting out a lot of the stuff, but I'm getting tired of little meat pies (served for morning teas and for lunch). Haven't they heard of cakes and slices?

Audio/Video - The Keynote was let down by the video of the presenter being really out of synch with the audio. It isn't rocket science, and it can't be the first time they've done this. I also noticed that one of the breakout rooms also had very echo-ey sound - a bit like a bathroom, which just detracts from the whole experience.

Keynote - This was by Anne Kirah - a Cultural Anthropologist who works for Microsoft MSN. She had some interesting stories to tell about how "real" users (eg. regular people) use software and how Microsoft is trying to become more "people focused", rather than "technology focused".

Apart from that, the speakers were good, and there was some interesting stuff.

Tech-Ed 2006 - Getting here

Thursday, 24 August 2006

The original plan was for the family to drive over to Sydney, but my Dad ended up having a major back operation scheduled for Monday, so we thought it would be best to hang around to see how that went instead.

Fortunately, work was happy for me to fly over instead, but it has meant that our planned holiday and catching up with family in NSW will be postponed until later in the year.

The flight was good, and I'm still staying with the in-laws as originally planned, so I'm being looked after very well :-)

Visual Studio .NET 2003 SP1

Wednesday, 16 August 2006

You might argue that this is 3 years late, but at least they finally released a service pack for Visual Studio 2003.

Apparently, the service pack for 2005 is due later this year - and not before time too - while the features of the new environment are fantastic, I'm seeing it crash with alarming regularity. Not the stable development environment you would expect.

Windows Live Writer

Tuesday, 15 August 2006

A new desktop application for writing blog entries. Quite a nice WYSIWYG interface. Will be interesting to see how good the integration with Blogger is.

Provware

Wednesday, 2 August 2006

This is a .NET library that provides a nice, managed framework for interacting with IIS