Day 1 is over, and all in all it was very good. It started off with Jeff Prosise's keynote speech, he is an excellent orator for 1.5 hours the majority of the lecture theater was hanging off nearly every word, well at least I was. He took everyone through the history of CGI/ISAPI programming, noting the EBay have the most complex ASAPI DLL ever written and then on to how classic ASP and PHP revolutionized how we write web app's. Then on to ASP.Net and on to how AJAX and Microsoft ASP.Net AJAX framework is cool (which I happen to agree). He spruced up his talk with various films of people hurting themselves with planes and boats (it was quite funny). Finally he showed us the Microsoft future of web programming is in WPF/E. Overall his talk was very cool, I personally would have liked to see more of the future and less of the past, but I believe that was saved for his other lectures that I was unable to go to.
The second lecture that I attended was "Attack and Defense: Securing ASP.NET 2.0", this was the weakest lecture that I attended, it didn't really cover ASP.Net 2.0, for instance Keith didn't mention event source validation and it was basically a copy of http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms998258.aspx#pagguidelines0001_inputdatavalidation but not as thorough or as interesting. Saying that Keith was a good speaker.
The last two lectures were a two-parter called "Practical Patterns" run by David Wheeler. Dave was a really great speaker, he was entertaining and funny and the two sessions didn't seem to drag. He basically went through about 12 of the design patterns that you can use in everyday development. There were about 130 odd slides, however the lecture was a "Code" lecture with Dave producing code version of the patterns in "life-like" applications. It was very good, his explanations were extremely clear and concise.
There are not that many vendors here this year. I have been told that in previous conferences there were more. It is a shame really because I wanted to see how many free T-shirts I could get (the current count is 1, from Infragistics) :). Seriously though, I would have loved to see a lot more .Net component developers showcasing their wares.
Infragistics, speaking of which didn't put on a great demo, however, their new XAML controls are looking pretty good especially the Carousel Listbox.
I also spoke to NAG (Numerical Analysis Group) however they didn't come across like they were bothered to be there.
TechExcel were really good. I spoke to Richard Zhu, and he is really enthusiastic about the software they are make and gave me a great demo of their Defect and Issue Tracking Software.
The guys distributing Enterprise Architect in the UK could have done a better job, they weren't demoing from what I remember or really selling the software. However one of their Tech Specialists will be there tomorrow so I will be speaking to him.
The QBS stand is okay, I spoke to the woman doing the Camtasia demo (for which you can get £60 off the retail price) but unfortunately it is more expensive the BBFlashback with from what I could tell the exact same features. I have used the trial version of BBFlashback and I was very impressed with. Saying that Camtasia does appear to be a fantastic product.
And that is about it for today.