Wednesday 19th March
Today was the Microsoft launch event at the ICC in Birmingham so I was up bright and early to make sure I was there on time.
The event was huge and i was impressed with the amount of information there was to consume.
I got a seat right at the front for the keynote by Jonathan Perera, General Manager of Application Platform and Developer Marketing but before he came one were treated to the sound of “Noise Ensemble” (sample video below)
If someone had told me beforehand that the Microsoft launch would open to some flashing lights and a group of people banging drums I would have laughed but it worked really well and was different and memorable
The keynote talked about the “heroes happen here” campaign and we had some demos of the new products in action.
There were various sessions to attend but i decided to focus on content i hadn’t seen as i was worried that with all the events (technet/user group/ etc) i’ve been to i might be hearing the same thing again
The first thing i saw was a small session (as in the amount of people) with Steve Lamb talking about security. What i liked about this session was that Steve wasn’t following any prepared content as such but was creating a conversation about anything security related. We started with Bitlocker and moved onto Server 2008, Hyper-v and IIS
Other sessions i went to included a look at Terminal Services (including Citrix and Softgrid) following by a look at the new features of IIS
My only downside was that a lot of the sessions overran so time in between was short which then meant i couldn’t check everything else out. The main hall was full of vendors, people from Microsoft covering various topics and a community stage where some of the developer user groups (noticeably the NXTGen user group) had some entertaining pieces on including a reworked version of Family Fortunes and something called “Swagons Den”!
I did manage to get a look at the stands run by HP, Symantec, Quest software, Dell and the partner programme. I just wish i’d been able to get to some more. Especially the life size statue of the Master Chief as i didn’t get a chance to grab a photo!!
As always there were plenty of people from the SBS community and as always we had a good natter!
The day ended at a “geek dinner”. I was really pleased this was organised actually as it wasn’t the first time I’d heard that name but they mostly organised in the south which generally limits my attendance! As Richard said in his post it would be good to try and get something similar in the Midlands going so if I’d love to hear from you if your interested. I really enjoyed the fact that guys from many different areas of IT came together over our common love of pizza and beer! All joking aside i got to meet some of the guys from the developer groups that i might not have otherwise engaged with so thanks to Zi for organising and thanks to NXTGen, VBUG and Developer Developer Developer! for being so hospitable
While Richard may have braved the night out on Broad Street i drove home knowing what i had in store for tomorrow. I got back just before 12 and this time went straight to bed!
End of part two!