Tuesday, 17 May 2005
With the seven-city Smart Client Deep Dive tour done, I thought it would be appropriate to summarize my upcoming speaking and training schedule.
- May 23-26. Ascend Training (Smart Client Track) Redmond, WA. Teaching Microsoft people and special guests (MVPs, RDs, partners) all about Smart Clients (VSTO, WinForms, and more) in Whidbey.
- June 3. Ascend Training (one day ultra condensed) Orlando, FL. This is a pre-conference event for Academic Days at Tech Ed.
- June 6-10. Tech Ed USA, Orlando FL. Two talks (Monday morning and Tuesday morning - both are C++ talks and who would go to only one of them? See the new syntax, new optimizations, new power for an old friend - search for DEV330 and DEV331), one panel lunch (women in technology), and helping out with the way cool thing the RDs are doing that I can't quite discuss yet.
- June 18-19. DevTeach, Montreal Quebec. A Canadian User Group Leader get-together, and my two C++ talks glued into one “What's New in C++“ presentation.
- October 23-26, Tech Ed Africa, Sun City South Africa. OK, I'm not officially accepted as a speaker yet but I'm pretty sure I'll be there, topics TBD.
- Nov 7-10. C++ Connections, Las Vegas, NV. How real customers are moving to the new C++.
This is just the stuff I'm on stage for. I'm planning to be in the audience at either or both of the PDC and the MVP Summit, both in September. And oh yeah, I have a company to run and some projects to finish. Gotta dash!
Sunday, 15 May 2005
The government of Ontario simplifies procurement by using Vendor of Record lists. If a Ministry or Agency is planning a certain kind of work, they use these lists rather than “the entire world” to locate a vendor. It's pretty fine company to be in: only 78 vendors qualified for our other VOR list, for Electronic Service Delivery.
This list, VOR-1005-04, is for “Task Based IT Consulting Services” and you can see all the vendors at http://www.ppitpb.gov.on.ca/mbs/psb/psb.nsf/english/vorlist-e.html#VOR-1005-04 - 137 in all, and some pretty big names (Microsoft Canada, say, or IBM Canada for that matter) mixed in with ours.
Monday, 09 May 2005
This weekend was a rarity in that I did very little work-work, as in “for the business”. It was, however, action-packed, featuring:
- Three overnight guests
- One continental breakfast in bed
- Two brunches
- One putting up of the large screened tent that covers my back deck (summer mornings in the screened tent with coffee and a laptop... deleting overnight spam becomes almost pleasant)
- One pool installation
- One barbeque-themed dinner (is there anything nicer than hot grilled vegetables?)
- One two-hour bike ride
Never mind what the calendar says, that was clearly a summer weekend. It was shorts weather, more than hot enough to be messing around getting wet as part of readying the pool, and that two hour ride could fit in after dinner thanks to longer days and warmer afternoons. Very nice. Now, back to work for me!
Friday, 22 April 2005
I was diverted today for some time by http://www.michaelbach.de/ot/index.html which is a trove of “visual illusions” and explanations for many of them. A lot require Flash, which I stubbornly refuse to install, but enough are presented as images alone that I was able to experience a lot of surprises.
You've seen the moving-without-moving blue and yellow wheel already perhaps, or the grid of white lines on a black background that seems to have black dots at the intersections, but only the intersections you aren't actually looking at. But have you seen the non animated image that starts out blurry and goes sharp, just because of what you were looking at before it? Or the instructions on how to draw impossible objects?
Look at this tiny animated gif from the main page. Think of it as flat. Now think of it as something that goes down into the page, like a crater or a bucket. Did you get a surprise?
I really must go do some work now.
Sunday, 17 April 2005
You snooze, you lose!
You can try getting on the waiting list at http://www.microsoft.com/events/teched2005/default.mspx but right now, write yourself a note to move a little more quickly next year. I'm looking forward to another terrific week. My talks have been scheduled now, and they are Monday and Tuesday. So it will be clear sailing through the rest of the week for me!
Wednesday, 06 April 2005
So, just how much do you know about the Base Class Libraries? About C# or VB? About moving to .NET from the unmanaged world? Think you know a lot? Wish you knew a lot? Well how about this for a contest: you answer questions about .NET development, and as long as you're getting every question right, you're in the running for TWENTY FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS. Canadian currency. Oh, and if you don't know that much... the learning modules will take care of it for you. You can learn the stuff as you work through the contest. Even after you've been knocked out of the running for the grand prize, you can still win module prizes. You want to be part of this. I'm not eligible, or I would have entered already. A fun chance to show off, to learn, and to win a book or an XBox or a whole whack of cash money. What's not to like? Go, enter!
Tuesday, 05 April 2005
In the last few days just about every Microsoft or Microsoft-friendly blog I read has changed its theme. I can't even remember how to change my theme, and suddenly the folks who were black on orange are blue on white, the folks who were blue on grey are orange on white, links that were on the left are on the right and vice versa. More than once this week I have thought I was on the wrong blog!
Let's see if I can get with the spirit and add some flare today or tomorrow...
Monday, 28 March 2005
What does it take to become a SharePoint developer? You should understand how SharePoint looks to a user, and the best way to learn that is by using it. You should know where to find the documentation for the object model and for CAML, and that means lots of Googling because it's not all in MSDN by any means. And then of course you need to be a developer. Mike Fitzmaurice makes it pretty clear that means an all-around good .NET developer. He's inspired by Gregory MacBeth's inaugural blog post that lists the steps to becoming a good SharePoint developer. Gregory sets the bar pretty high - step 0 is get your MCSD, and then the real learning can begin. My attention was caught by Mike's postscript that in addition to being an all-round .NET dev, in VB or C# as you prefer, and learning the SharePoint-specific material, you're also going to need C++:
Attention tool builders and other interested developers — in the next release, protocol handler development and IFilter development will still need to be in C++. Do not wait for the rules to change, because they won’t (at least not before “v4”). If you want to extend our search technology to new content sources and formats, you might as well get started now. Search gets a lot better in many ways, but the method for developing IFilters/protocol handlers isn’t one of them.
So, all round .NET dev, SharePoint object model, CAML etc, and while you're at it, C++. No wonder I'm finding good SharePoint devs rather hard to find!
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