PDC09 – Day One

by Van 18. November 2009 15:25

This was the first keynote ever that I was late for; I missed the first five minute. I will have to go back and watch it on line to see what I missed. The highlight of the keynote was, of course, the enhancements to Windows Azure. One of the big things for me was Ray talking about private clouds; hosted clouds and public clouds; this I think will be good way to get the major Corporations on board. They show partners with good stories on why the cloud is important. Another announcement that made at the keynote is that Windows Azure was going to support other development tools like PHP. This could be game changing, because Microsoft is including all developers(I heard them using the word Tomcat).  At the keynote there were also demonstrations with the new Identity frame. The keynote shows functionality in Visual Studio 2010, that I was not aware of like support for multiple monitors. This was also the first Keynote that I can remember that finished early (they usually finish late).

After the keynote was a snack break, good thing there was no breakfast because I would have not been able to resist the doughnuts.

Next on my schedule I had “FT02 - Data Programming and Modeling for the Microsoft .NET Developer “, which I chose, and “FT11 - Future Directions for C# and Visual Basic”. This session was really talking about modeling with the ADO.NET Entity framework. It is focusing on the new features in the Microsoft Entity Framework Feature CTP 2 for Visual Studio 2010.  This session demonstrated the modeling tools “M” and “Quantant” with Entity Framework. This one of the technologies I will be trying out when I return to Virginia.

The lunch buffet followed, I grab too much food, could not finish the salmon (it was good). I did however finish desert.   After eating I did quick walk around the “Big Room” saw the HOL (Hands-on-labs), some looked interesting will have to go back later. There however was a long line for the Windows Azure HOL (there are giving away a Flip Camera for completing one). I decided to go to a Lunch session (It was on my schedule), “CL30 - Microsoft Expression Blend 3 for Developers: Tips, Tricks and Best Practices”. I am trying to use Blend and have been many sessions on it this year (Mix, Tech-ed, local user groups and code camps).  I also bought a book on it. I believe the more exposure the better I will become at it. This session showed me things I need to try. I will have to watch this session again online with Blend opened.

Next on my schedule I had “FT18 - Microsoft ASP.NET Futures”.  Since I am an ASP.Net developer, this was a great session for me.  This session showed the features the ASP.Net team is working on. The ASP.Net Helpers I thought was very interesting (email verification; background task; file upload progress).     

The next session I went to was “FT10 - Evolving ADO.NET Entity Framework in Microsoft .NET Framework 4 and Beyond”, which was on schedule, this was a great follow-up the “FT02 - Data Programming and Modeling for the Microsoft .NET Developer”, I went to earlier. This session show how to use your POCO classes to generate a database from them (very cool). Other things that were demonstrated; the use of Store Procs, doing lazy loading, and the use of the repository pattern in EF.

For the last session of the day I had “CL23 - SketchFlow: Prototyping to the Rescue” and “FT32 - Code Contracts and Pex: Power Charge Your Assertions and Unit Tests”. However at that point in the day I was not in a mode for either topic, so I went to “FT08 - Code Visualization, UML, and DSLs” instead. This session demonstrated some of the new architect features and why they are useful for developers. I especially liked thing how it handle existing code with diagrams to help a developer figure out what the code is doing.

I was then off to the Partner Expo. I have a goal on trying not to bring home too much SWAG. There were great T-Shirts as always. Free beer, hamburgers; still full from lunch (there was a lot of food there).

The highlight of PDC09 Day One – the changes in EF

PDC09 – Day Zero

by Van 17. November 2009 14:17

I went to the Los Angeles Convention Center late morning; this was to avoid the rush of the people who were attending the workshops so I would not have to wait. This year there are no busses from the hotel to the conference center on day zero, I was able to get a ride on a bus for the crew, but I had to walk back. It was a beautiful day and the walk is good for me.

I decided again this year not to go to the workshop even though there seem to be some very good ones.  Last year I heard rave reviews from other attendees of how good these workshops are, but the thought of spending a whole day on one topic just doesn’t appeal to me; I guess it must be my short attention span.

I registered and I received my conference bag; I like it better than last year, but missed the bags that I could carry my laptop in. However, I really don’t need another conference bag have a bunch at home and I never seem to use the PDC bags after the conference. This year there is no PDC store where I usually get a PDC hat and PDC polo shirt on day zero (oh well).  They did however gave us a 20% discount on Microsoft merchandise (I will order something when I get home less to carry back). They also gave us a coupon for a Certification test.  While going through the conference guide in the conference bag. I notice there will be no breakfast, I not a big breakfast eater and this will probably help me from gaining weight at the conference (a very good thing).

I recheck my schedule for the week; I right now have a session (sometimes two) for every time slot except for the first timeslot on Day 3. This will most likely change (for me it always does), because I want to do some hands-on-labs and the Keynote usually makes me decide to check out some session that was not in my plans.

I went to Visual Studio documentary; I got there a little early; which was good because it got crowded. The documentary was very good if you have not seen it check it out on Channel 9. After the documentary I went to the Tweet-Up (free beer) at the Hotel Figueroa and ran into some Mid-Atlantic tweeps. It was a great evening preparing me for PDC09 Day One.

I does seem that Microsoft is cutting back on the extras at PDC this year, something I believe are to save money while other are for going green (for instance I have been on the day zero busses to the conference center and sometimes it could be just me on the bus a waste of gas). The main reason I come to PDC is for the content; I like the extras but if the content was not good I would not come.


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Preparing for PDC 09

by Van 13. November 2009 14:18

 Back in August I registered for PDC09 and made my Hotel and Airline reservations. Over the course of the last couple of months, I have been watching various videos series (Countdown to PDC09, PDC Classic and The Knowledge Chamber) on Channel 9 . Last week, I picked the sessions I am interested in attending. This week I started packing.

In preparation for PDC,  I also downloaded and installed Visual Studio 2010 Beta2. I started doing some Silverlight 3 development with it. I am still hoping to work with some of the new technologies before I go the sessions at PDC. I also downloaded the Visual Studio 2010 and .NET Framework 4 Training Kit . It has great hands-on labs that I hope to try before getting there. I have been following the announcements on Twitter, and PDC  blog, and  website.




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PDC: Stay ahead of the curve on Microsoft technologies

by Van 11. November 2009 17:57

On November 17, I will be attending PDC09. This will be my 5th one. In 2000, I chose not to go to the PDC because it was in July, and I was already planning to go to Tech-ed in June. I said to myself what could happen in the software development world within a month? How wrong I was! That was probably the most important PDC ever because of the introduction of .Net! Later that year, I went to VS-Live Orlando and found out what I had missed. This is where I first saw .Net (VB.Net, C#, ASP.Net, ADO.Net). At that conference, the presenters were all using Visual Studio .Net, which I had never seen before. Then I found out the only way to have that software was by atteding PDC.  It does not matter if you have an MSDN subscription; there is always software at the PDC that you can’t get anywhere else.

PDC is where Microsoft unveils software that may not appear in final versions for years. At PDC 2000, it was, of course, .Net.; PDC 2001, .Net Compact framework; PDC03,  Longhorn(Vista), Widbey (Visual Studio 2005), Yukon(SQL Server 2005), Indigo(WCF), Avalon(WPF); PDC05,  LINQ, ASP.NET Ajax; PDC08, Windows Azure. There are always great announcements at PDC about Microsoft direction. Beside great sessions on these new technologies, there are also hands-on-labs where you can go and play with these new technologies.

All in all, if you want to keep up with and stay ahead of the curve on Microsoft technologies, PDC is a must conference.  You will always get software you can get no place else and you get to hear firsthand about Microsoft’s direction.  I can’t wait to get there.

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Notes on Microsoft Sharepoint Conference 2009

by Van 29. October 2009 14:37

Last week was, I believe, the second annual Microsoft Sharepoint Conference. I will have to admit I was not there. In the past I would have told you that Microsoft has only three great conferences for developers: MIX, Tech-Ed and PDC. Not saying that DevConnections or VSLive are not great conferences, but in my opinion these are the best. But, last week made me realize that there is a fourth great one for developers,  Microsoft Sharepoint Conference.

Following the tweets of some of the conference attendees made me realize how important it was. The keynote itself had many tweets which were very exciting. The announcements were what you expect at a great conference. Am I sure that the sessions were great I would expect no less from a Microsoft conference.

Another reason I thought this was great is in a year of IT cut backs, this conference sold out, and my other favorites did not. I know PDC has not happen yet, but I doubt it will sell out.

My advice is that if you’re a Sharepoint developer,  this is a great conference to go to next year. I am not one,  but with all of this excitement maybe by next year I will be.


Check out my previous post on Microsoft Sharepoint Conference 2009 http://www.nuttin-but.net/blog/post/2009/10/19/Big-News-today-Sharepoint-2010.aspx


Big News today Sharepoint 2010

by Van 19. October 2009 19:32

Today is the first day of the Sharepoint Conference 2009. You can checkout the key note at http://www.mssharepointconference.com/Pages/default.aspx. It looks like Sharepoint 2010 Beta 2 will be available in November.  It will be 64-bit only and will only run on Windows Server 2008 SP1. For more information check out Mary-Jo Foley blog (http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=4278).

Check these articles on developing Sharepoint with Visual Studio 2010 (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/vstudio/dd441784.aspx#Sharepoint )

Demos from Nova Code Camp

by Van 15. October 2009 05:14

Attched are the Demos I did at the Nova Code Camp on Oct 10, 2009

These Demos have a simple Silverlight 3 app data binding local object;  talking to SQL Server database using classic ADO.Net, ADO.NET Entity Framework and LINQ to SQL; communicating to an asp.net web project using ASMX web services, WCF web services, ADO.NET Data Services and.Net RIA Services.

Nova Code Camp - Silverlight Data Access.zip (9.90 mb)

Data Access With Silverlight 3.ppt (2.59 mb)

About Van

Van, a Senior Web Developer for Innervisions Software, Inc. since 1996, started programming Mainframes using COBOL, JCL for AT&T in 1979. While at AT&T, Van was part of many development teams that produced enterprise level applications and systems using CICS, IMS and other mainframe technologies. 

Van bought his first personal computer in 1982, an Apple II+, and started to write programs for home use in Applesoft (Basic Microsoft created for the Apple II) . 

Van first started working with Microsoft technologies using Access 1.0 and Visual Basic 3.0. In 2000, Van attended VS Live in Orlando where he was first exposed to .Net. He started programming .Net with Visual Studio .Net Beta 2. He became an Independent Consultant in 1996 and started Innervisions Software, Inc. 

In 2003 he wrote his first professional ASP.Net app. Since 2004 Van has been subcontracting on an IRS project using ASP.Net, VB.Net, and SQL Server.

He spends his spare time working on the web site for Prince William Special Olympics which was created using Dot Net Nuke.   Van is currently working on a Silverlight app for Prince William Special Olympics to manage their volunteers.

Van has a BA in Mathematics from Lehman College in New York City and a MS in Computer Science from George Washington University. Van holds MCP certifications in Visual Basic, Access, ASP.Net and SQL Server.

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