DDD6 is over – thanks to all involved

The sixth DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper took place last Saturday, the 24th of November. 307 attendees enjoyed a good mix of topics, caffeine, chocolate and an excellent geek dinner afterwards.

As organisers we are grateful to all those folks who attended and those parties who played a part in making it happen. We are especially grateful to Microsoft who provided an unparalleled level of support: they provided the venue free of charge, the catering, the attendee management system, the lovely event staff who have the ability to smile all day long and the security. However, special thanks need to go to Clare Burgess for all her efforts in making DDD6 happen too. And that’s not to say the DPEs don’t deserve thanks too – their presence lends weight to the community spirit that DDD has to offer, they get involved, they wear the DDD polo shirts, they mingle, they chat: in this instance, Dan, Martin, Mike, gracias!

We should have made this notice of appreciation on the day itself, however I failed to write it down on the closing remarks sheet that I wrote minutes before it was required (thanks to the event staff for copying it!) Apologies for that, it was my oversight. Will do better next time.

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040 – DevExpress – TechSummit 2007 – Mark Miller on CodeRush and Refactor!Pro

Craig Murphy (wearing a DCon polo shirt!), Mark Miller

Welcome to podcast#40. Microsoft MVP and DevExpress IDE Architect, Mark Miller gets vocal about CodeRush and Refactor – IDE productivity tools from Developer Express. Over the course of 30 or so minutes, we discuss Mark’s favourite refactorings for WinForms/desktop code and for ASP.NET code. We also touch on how DevExpress choose which refactorings make it into the product.

The use of CodeRush is covered, as is the clever use of Gina and Sara – two models who could type but had never coded before. DevExpress ran a competition at DevConnections whereby attendees could win some cash if they could beat the models in a coding competition. The models had CodeRush and Refactor available to them, the attendees did not! I’ll be writing more about this competition later this month, but in the meantime, consider this – the story of an attendee who used a competing refactoring tool, and lost!

Recorded live in the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas, there is some background noise, apologies for that.

“I did not steal a dollar bill, no sir!”

Podcast feed – subscribe here!

This podcast: http://www.craigmurphy.com/podcasts/040-DevExpress-TechSummit-Mark-Miller.mp3

Mark’s Blog
Developer Express

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039 – DevExpress – TechSummit 2007 – Oliver Sturm on the eXpress Application Framework

We’re taking all that grunt work of creating a new application out of the whole thing and that’s the most important idea really.

Welcome to podcast#39. Oliver Sturm, community evangelist, Microsoft MVP and DDD speaker takes some time out to talk to me about the eXpress Application Framework, eXpress Persistent Objects, the DevConnections challenge. Oliver crams a lot into this podcast and does so very eloquently.

Ironically, Oliver lives “just down the road” from me – I could have popped down and recorded this podcast with him at his home. Instead, we both found ourselves over 7,000 miles from home…such is our dedication!

Recorded live in the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas, there is some background noise, mainly from the bar, the slot machines and the general ambiance associated with the surroundings.

Podcast feed – subscribe here!

This podcast: http://www.craigmurphy.com/podcasts/039-DevExpress-TechSummit-Oliver-Sturm.mp3

Oliver’s Blog
Developer Express

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038 – SQLBits – With Barry Dorrans, Fernando Guerrero and Akim Boukhelif

SQLBits, the sponsors: Microsoft | Idera
Quest Software | Solid Quality Learning | redgate

Welcome to podcast#38. This is a mixed show with common content from myself and Barry Dorrans. In the first half, you’ll hear Barry and I talking with Fernando Guerrero about his SQLBits grok talk (the one that he had to cancel as he had a flight to catch!) During the second half, Barry and I talking with Microsoft’s Akim Boukhelif about the Microsoft MVP Programme.

Podcast feed – subscribe here!

This podcast: http://www.craigmurphy.com/podcasts/038-SQLBits-Fernado-Barry-Akim

Blogs mentioned in this podcast
Fernando’s blog
Barry’s blog

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DDD6 – Micro-blogging via Twitter and eventtrack

I’m not sure how successful this is going to be, but I have great faith in the power of Twitter!

Via Chris Dalby [blog], I’m pleased to have discovered http://twitter.com/eventtrack

How does this work? Well, if you’re at DDD6 and have a suitably featured mobile device, you can Twitter live whilst in sessions (remembering of course to have your device on vibrate or silent!) Others who are following the eventtrack feed for DDD6 will be able to read your comments, etc. And if you’re not able to attend DDD6, hopefully the eventtrack feed for DDD6 will give you a near live feed of what you’re missing!

If anyone wants to join the conversation, follow the steps below:

1. On Twitter, follow the user eventtrack

2. At the start of the event, tweet @eventtrack start*DDD6

3. Start twittering like normal, everything you Twitter from now on will be grouped into the DDD6 event

4. After the event you can send a tweet @eventtrack stop*DDD6

5. Now the system will no longer pay attention to you

Simple and easy and for those of you not attending or those that are you’ll be able to follow the collective conversation via here:


This is the first time we’ve tried something like this, so please do try and make use of it! Thanks!

Of course, it does assume that you’re signed up for Twitter! Find me here: http://twitter.com/CAMURPHY, and find DDD here: http://twitter.com/developerday

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I’m on the road in January…NxtGenUG and DotNetDevNet

I’ll be speaking at the NxtGenUG meeting in Birmingham on the 21st of January 2008, more details here.

I’ll also be speaking at the DotNetDevNet meeting in Bristol that week, more details is available here.

An Introduction to Test-Driven Development
With Test-Driven Development (TDD) now entering the mainstream via such tools as NUnit and more recently xUnit.net. If you are wondering how to “get more” from TDD, code coverage could well be part of the answer. Craig believes that we can improve the quality of our application by using a combination of TDD and code coverage. Over the course of 60-75 minutes Craig will introduce the benefits of code coverage using both manual methods and automated tools. He will briefly introduce TDD and will go on to demonstrate the benefits of using code coverage tools against your unit tests, i.e. how well do your tests exercise your classes/application?

Automating Your Build Process …
For non-trivial applications, having a managed build process is essential. However, if that build process is irksome to use and requires a series of fiddly steps in order to complete it, developers/build folks will not been too keen to run it frequently. This is a shame because a repeatable, fast and easy to use build process increases confidence and product quality. Automating the build involves scripting every action that you need in order to compile, test, deploy and re-test your application. Using FinalBuilder as an example, Craig will show you how this is done. Craig has no connection personal, financial, marital or otherwise with the makers of FinalBuilder, he just likes it and uses it …

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037 – Andrew Cherry – Windows Media Center – MVP Open Day

For any Media Centre PCs, I would put an NVidia 8600 GT in and specifically a passively cooled one…

Welcome to podcast#37. Andrew Cherry, Media Center MVP takes time out from mingling to chat to me about the Windows Media Center, developing applications for it and the uses you might put it to in the home. During this podcast, MILAF gets mentioned – I think it might have shocked Andrew – you’ll have to listen to hear how long Andrew was shocked for and to see if it’ll shock you!

Recorded live in the Novotel, there is some background noise, mainly from the 40 or so MVP’s who were enjoying the chance to catch up.

The MVP Open Day is a mechanism provided by Microsoft to bring together their MVP’s. Meeting each other is one of the key goals, however it also provides a mechanism for Microsoft to share information with MVP’s in a face-to-face scenario. It’s also an excellent vehicle for MVP’s to deliver presentations to fellow MVP’s – recursive sharing.

Photos of the MVP Open Day can be found at these locations:

Podcast feed – subscribe here!

This podcast: http://www.craigmurphy.com/podcasts/037-MVP-OpenDay-Andrew-Cherry.mp3

Andrew’s web site: http://www.digitallivingsolutions.co.uk/

Resources mentioned in this podcast
Media Center Sandbox
HP TouchSmart
Niveus Media

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TechNet events – Newcastle & Falkirk – Nov/Dec 2007

There are still some places available for the TechNet events across the country at the end of November and early December. Particularly in Newcastle and Falkirk.

There are three separate sessions:

  1. Beyond SharePoint – a look at Microsoft Office Performance Point 2007 and Enterprise Search
  2. Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services and System Center
  3. SQL Server 2008

Register here: http://www.microsoft.com/uk/technet/training/events.mspx

The Dates
22 November 2007
London: Eight Reasons to migrate to SQL Server 2008

27 November 2007
Falkirk: Beyond SharePoint: Advanced Solutions in Business Intelligence and Enterprise Search
Falkirk: How to take online backups of running applications via System Center Data Protection Manager AND how to provide secure remote access to applications via Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services
Falkirk: Eight reasons to migrate to SQL Server 2008

29 November 2007
Manchester: Beyond SharePoint: Advanced Solutions in Business Intelligence and Enterprise Search
Manchester: How to take online backups of running applications via System Center Data Protection Manager AND how to provide secure remote access to applications via Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services
Manchester: Eight reasons to migrate to SQL Server 2008

4 December 2007
Newcastle: Beyond SharePoint: Advanced Solutions in Business Intelligence and Enterprise Search
Newcastle: How to take online backups of running applications via System Center Data Protection Manager AND how to provide secure remote access to applications via Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services
Newcastle: Eight reasons to migrate to SQL Server 2008

5 December 2007
London: Beyond SharePoint: Advanced Solutions in Business Intelligence and Enterprise Search
London: How to take online backups of running applications via System Center Data Protection Manager AND how to provide secure remote access to applications via Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services

7 December 2007
Reading: Beyond SharePoint: Advanced Solutions in Business Intelligence and Enterprise Search
Reading: How to take online backups of running applications via System Center Data Protection Manager AND how to provide secure remote access to applications via Windows Server 2008 Terminal Services

Register here: http://www.microsoft.com/uk/technet/training/events.mspx

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DevExpress TechSummit – a chat with Kent Alstad

Over the course of 5 minutes, Kent Alstad chats about our time at the first DevExpress TechSummit, held in the Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas.

Video: Developer Express TechSummit – Kent's view

The video closes rather quickly – we were going to chat about Kent’s product however this was conference setup time, so a technical issue relating to the speaker system meant we had to wrap up! I will catch up with Kent at some point in the future to “continue the conversation”!

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DDD6 – Car Sharing Wiki

Folks – Zi has done it again – this time it’s in the form of a car sharing wiki!

If you are travelling to DDD6 (on November 24th) and are willing to share your car with a like-minded technical person, please make the offer known via the wiki.

Similarly, if you are looking for a lift, please use the request section to make that known to others!

Here it is: http://www.zimakki.com/wiki/DDD6Travel.ashx

And if you missed the post about the coaches, it’s here. The coaches are sponsored by SQLBits.

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Developer Express – TechSummit 2007 – day 2

Last Sunday, the 4th of November, saw me in Las Vegas for the second day of the Developer Express TechSummit 2007. Podcasts will be ready this week!

Today’s sessions covered the Developer Express offering in the ASP.NET arena and the IDE productivity tools CodeRush and Refactor ! Pro. Day one had seen demonstrations of the “desktop” offering in the way of WinForms, WPF and Silverlight – today was the web offering and the IDE tools show!

Mehul Harry was kind enough to deliver an excellent overview of the ASP.NET product line, focusing on the ASPxGridView, ASPxScheduler and the ASPxperience. As I understand it, this was Mehul’s first public presentation, kudos to Mehul, a job well done! Check out the on-line demos here.

Mark Miller and Dustin Campbell then took the floor to discuss Refactor ! Pro. It’s worth noting that Microsoft are using a free version of Refactor! in their Visual Basic 2005 and 2008 product lines – further details can be found here. Refactor! and Refactor ! Pro co-exist very nicely, as Mark was more than happy to demonstrate. Whilst a target of some 150 refactorings in place for the end of 2007 might seem like rather a lot, it seems that Developer Express are ahead of schedule and are likely to have more than 150 refactorings available for the start of 2008, an impressive feat!

After a short break, Mark returned to discuss CodeRush – an IDE productivity tool that, for me, has its roots in the Delphi product set. However, as Mark noted in a podcast that we recorded, it actually goes back further than Delphi, touching on the days of DOS! CodeRush might seem like it’s promoting arcane keystroke that require memorising. True enough, there is a learning curve to contend with, however once that curve has been flattened (and it’s a quick process), the keystrokes you have learnt are portable between the various languages supported by CodeRush. Equally, because it is no longer a chore to create (not necessarily write) code, you become used to doing this they way they should be done, i.e. less corners are cut – for example, how often have you not bothered with an exception block?

Closing the day saw Ray Navasarkian take the floor. Ray’s a down-to-earth guy who is passionate about his company’s offering. I managed to grab a few minutes of audio with Ray after day one of the TechSummit, just outside Morton’s Steakhouse. We chatted about the merits and successes of bringing together like-minded influencers who have a community spirit and enjoy sharing their experiences and tribulations with others.

Many thanks to Developer Express for inviting me to this conference: for me, it was very much worthwhile. It’s nice to get away from the day-to-day activities and just focus on one thing for a couple of days. Further thanks for affording me the ‘exhibtor’ pass to the DevConnections evening event – it was a blast, I caught up with a few folks from the UK (Alex & Dave), with the Falafel team from the Pacific coast and with Dr.Neil Roodyn (a man who follows the warm weather from one hemisphere to the other!)

Refactor ! Pro: 110+ Refactorings, Three Languages, One Keystroke.

CodeRush: Powerful. Efficient. Fast.

Related Posts
Developer Express – TechSummit 2007 – day 1

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DDD6 – Free coaches to and from Reading station (and geek dinner)

I am pleased to announce that on the 24th of November, there will be two coaches running from Reading railway station to the DDD6 venue at Microsoft’s TVP Campus.

The morning coaches will be there from 0800 – the first one will depart when it is full. The second one will depart when it is full or if the time reaches 0845. Therefore, show up sharp if you want to get the free coach.

At the end of the day, two coaches will leave from TVP heading back to Reading station. The coaches will be available from 1645 – the first will leave when it is full, the second will leave when it is full or when the time reaches 1730.

You are free to use the coaches in either direction, and are invited to use the coaches to get you back into the centre of Reading in time for the geek dinner that Zi is so graciously organising once again!

The coaches are sponsored by SQLBits – huge thanks to them!

SQL Bits has been started by a group of individuals that are passionate about the SQL Server product suite. There is a breadth of knowledge in the SQL Community that will benefit everyone in the community. We want to spread that knowledge.

We all work with the SQL community, some of us for many years and have all been given the MVP award by Microsoft.

This is not run by Microsoft but benefits greatly from the support provided by Microsoft to the Developer and IT Pro communities.

SQLBits – the podcast collection.

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