Tuesday, September 27, 2005

WPF Beta 1 to Sept CTP Changes

Chris Sells and Ian Griffiths have put up a very nice list of changes between Beta 1 of WPF and the Sept CTP.

http://www.sellsbrothers.com/writing/avbook/changenotes/WPFb1to9-05CtpChangeNotes.htm

I could have used this last week while porting a few projects here at work....

Friday, September 16, 2005

My First PDC

So, this was my first PDC and I'm a little drained. Its definitely a lot to take in. Looking around at all the stuff we have been exposed to and that is coming up you can't help but be affected by the koolaid (it wasn't until reading a book recently that I learned where the colorful phrase "drinking the koolaid" came from... kinda brutal). There are just tons and tons of new things coming in Vista and there is no way to grok it all.

Anyway, we learned a lot, got a lot of good answers to questions we have been hanging on to for the past year and made some good contacts inside Microsoft that will hopefully bear fruit moving forward.

We watched the PDC Showoff tonight. This was the first time they've held the ShowOff and for more information on what the Showoff was you should go here. Some of the videos were quite entertaining and at least 5 of the videos used Camtasia Studio to do the recording. It is good to see our products used out in the real world. This was my first time going out to a conference like this and it was nice to see some name recoginition of our products even if it wasn't extensive.

The videos shown are going to be put up on Channel9 at some point, so that should be good. I think the "Bar Code" one was my favorite. I actually expected to see a lot more videos of WPF content, but it worked out a lot better having a heterogeneous set of videos.

Its getting way late, Mike is snoring in the bed next to me.... I supposed I should be going to bed now too. I'm looking forward to playing with the new bits we got here and getting back to some normalcy back home.

Oh yeah. Finally got to meet Scoble. Not sure why that is interesting, but there you have it.

XAML and Mono

Throughout college and where I used to work (USGS) I spent a lot of time working on Unix and Linux machines, so I have always had a soft spot for *nixes. Today, even though I write MS Windows software I still run a linux box at home. As such I like to keep an eye on what is going on in the open source community. So, it was nice to see the Mono Project working to stay in line with MS's app building technologies (MSBuild, XAML, etc):

http://www.mono-project.com/Summer2005#XAML_compiler

Who I Am

I should introduce myself.... Hi, My name is Tony Lambert and I software engineer at TechSmith Corporation on the SnagIt product.

Technology-wise, currently my interests lie in WinFX, Vista, .NET, C#, and things of that ilk.

Disclaimer: I am adding content to this blog off hours and any comments/opinions etc are not those of my employer.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Sidebar on XP

So in a surprising announcement, the sidebar (previously seen in earlier versions of Longhorn), will now be released for XP.

PDC Day 3 (and some Day 2 Fun)

It's server day at the PDC. Lots of interesting IIS7 options that make it act much more like Apache, but at an even finer scale (think of loading mod_xxx for only a given site). There were also interesting auto-deployment tools, and debugging of those. Overall not much related to my day-to-day work, but still lots of fun.

Last night was the attendee party at Universal Studios. It was a little bit of a pain getting there. There was a line outside our hotel that went from the bus pickup, down the block, around the corner and then then half-way down that block. So instead of waiting, we ended up taking the train (subway). It ended up dumping us at the bottom of the hill that Universal Studios sits on, so after a hike we finally got there about 9:00 or so. A good time was had by all in the end.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The PDC Day 2

So it's day two of the PDC and I'm finally getting to post. Internet access is way spotty at our hotel (at least we have power now) and it's hard to post from a tablet here.

I was a little underwhelmed over what was announced here. In 2003 we were fairly blown away by everything (granted some of that isn't going to be shipping). It just seems like most of this tech was already known about before we got here. The Office 12 changes were a suprise to me, and I can't wait to get to play with it all. The WPF/e stuff is definately cool also. I don't know that re-releasing features that were being touted a year ago really counts as new tech (Vista Sidebar).

Still, it's great to get to talk 1 on 1 with lots of the people here.

As a side note I had two run-ins with Robert Scoble. First was literally that. I bumped into him on Tues night and almost dumped my dinner on him. Second one was when Tony and I happened to catch an interview in the Big Room.
Scoble Interview

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Blogging and the PDC

Generally I hate meta-blogging, but this is only a little bit of that.

While it wasn't a really in-depth interview, I enjoyed how comfortable Scoble's interview with Bill Gates felt. I was impressed that Bill appreciated the blogging by Scoble, the Channel 9 team, and other Microsoft employees, and really understood why it was so important. I believe they changed the way a lot of people outside of Microsoft view the company. A big piece of this for me is how approachable they are as people. Read some posts on blogs.msdn.com and you really see the people behind the company.

So this leads into the second topic, the PDC. We leave is less than 4 days for LA. The last PDC (2003) was the first I'd been too, and I can't wait to be back. Some people complain that it's all marketing and fireworks, and perhaps lots of it is. I believe it's really what you make of it. Sure I love to get to see the new roadmaps and technology, but the other parts are just as important.

I like interacting with people that enjoy shipping software.

I'm not talking just about the Microsoft employees, but also other attendees. Most of these people are there because they are excited about what they do. They want to produce new things and have people use it. Then they want those people to be excited and tell more people. There's an incredible high during (and coming off of) the PDC that I really believe helps push software forward.

I think that a lot of the Microsoft blogging has helped keep some of this energy up year-round, but I'm looking forward to a recharge next week.