Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Launch Event!

Showed up, checked-in, and was handed a VIP badge. Cool! I'm a VIP... But, as I wander around the conference, it seems that most badges are either VIP or Staff, so maybe being a simple "Attendee" is what is chic at this conference.

Come to find out, VIP's get to sit in the first section of rows at the keynote speech. Cool! I'm center stage, about 8 rows back. The music is blaring, and the anticipation is building. This thing is going to rock!

Cheap Trick opens up with a rocking number, and then Steve Ballmer takes the stage.

Summary of the keynote: The products rock, SQL Server 2005 is a scalable, robust, enterprise-level alternative to Oracle, and the express versions of products are free (so there's no reason not to have Express on every desktop).

I've been wandering around the floor, popping in and out of different sessions. The Windows Mobile team even has me wearing one of their hats in hopes of scoring one of the 7 smart phones being given away.

Grabbed a turkey boxed lunch, and then chatted with some folks about Microsoft Dynamics (new branding of the Business tools, like CRM and Great Plains) and the new SP2 for Win2k3.

I'm also finding myself staring at the chest of some women walking around, but it's not what you think. HP is advertising their digital photography, and have LCD monitors embedded in shirts playing videos. Pretty weird, in a Teletubby sort of way.

".NET Rock Stars" that I've recognized so far today: Juval Löwy and the well-dressed David Chappell.