# Saturday, October 25, 2008

Once again I am teaming up with the Tank to raise money for Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. It is a great program and 100% of the money goes to the hospital and research center. Each year we team up with Fred’s Team to raise money via the NYC Marathon. (I myself have hung up my marathon shoes and the Tank is hanging them up next year.) When we visit the hospital, the doctors show us supplies, drugs, and materials that Fred’s Team paid for. On marathon day the kids with cancer come down to watch the marathon and give hi-fives to the runners.

This is a very awesome cause. And like all charity’s I work with, 100% of the proceeds go to charity, Fred’s Team is 100% volunteer and has no overhead. You can make a donation here.

posted on Saturday, October 25, 2008 7:19:31 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [1] Trackback
# Friday, October 24, 2008

Over the years I have spoken at over 15 Tech*Eds in North America, Europe, and Asia. My favorite place to speak is hands down Barcelona. Mostly because the good show TechEd Europe puts on, but of also the audience, and the fun city that Barcelona is.

Not so sure I will like it this year, I have eight sessions at TechEd! Wow, they are working me hard. Apparently they are repeating a few sessions due to delegates voting on the sessions, so all I can say is THANK YOU and hopefully you will all get a lot of value from the sessions.

A lot of my sessions are interactive, and I mean that. At the Daily Scrum talks we will be passing around a microphone and it will be 100% Q&A, war stories, and interactive, no slides if I can help it. (Come on, ask a lot of questions, tell a lot of war stories make my week a little easier!) I am a certified Scrum Master and use it every day at Telerik, so if you are just curious, getting started, or in the trenches with Scrum, this is a great session for you. The Using Scrum session is more of an overview, but I would love some interaction and Q&A there as well.

The CTE and T-SQL sessions are brand new content and geared to developers: both application developers (C# and VB) and database developers (T-SQL programmers/DBA types), basically anyone who writes TSQL at some point during the day. (And even thought they are titled 2008, you can use most techniques in SQL 2005.) Hopefully they will not only show you some shortcuts, but also some creative ways of thinking. If you are coming from a strict C# and VB perspective, remember I started my life as a VB 3.0 programmer 15 years ago-not a database/TSQL developer, so I gear the session to a wide audience. In the TSQL Enhancements session, I have some pretty cool ADO. NET shortcuts.

And what is this Smackdown session? It is less of a smackdown and more of an overview of the crazy world of Microsoft Data Access. I was given carte-blanche by the TechEd planners, so anything goes!! I’ll be reviewing all of the SP1 technology (EF, LINQ to Entities, Astoria, LINQ to REST, Dynamic Data) and also take a walk down memory lane to use the historical context to try to predict what is next.  Don’t worry we can talk about the EF Vote of No Confidence and my experiences on the EF Council. I am going to reserve the final 15 minutes or so for a group discussion on the future of data access, is it EF/LINQ, is it ORM, is it EF, or is it something different? We also take a peek at Cloud Data and its role in all of this.

If you make it to Friday afternoon at 3:15 for the Scrum talk, bring beer.We’ll need it.

Here are the sessions:



T-SQL: Tips and Tricks Sharing Fest!

Interactive Session

Database Platform

11/10/2008   5:45PM - 7:00PM


Tech·Ed Daily Scrum!

Interactive Session

Development Practices

11/11/2008   9:00AM - 10:15AM


Using Scrum to Run Your Projects

Breakout Session

Developer Managers

11/11/2008   1:30PM - 2:45PM


T-SQL Enhancements in SQL Server 2008 : Getting Down and Dirty

Breakout Session

Database Platform

11/12/2008   1:30PM - 2:45PM


Rockstar Common Table Expressions in SQL Server 2008

Breakout Session

Database Platform

11/13/2008   9:00AM - 10:15AM

DAT01-IS (R)

T-SQL: Tips and Tricks Sharing Fest!

Interactive Session

Database Platform

11/13/2008   1:30PM - 2:45PM


Data Access Smackdown

Interactive Session

Database Platform

11/14/2008   10:45AM - 12:00PM

DVP04-IS (R)

Tech·Ed Daily Scrum!

Interactive Session

Development Practices

11/14/2008   3:15PM - 4:30PM

posted on Friday, October 24, 2008 10:38:12 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I am back from a 16 day, three country, three conference European tour. It was a lot of fun and the community is alive and well in Europe and I am looking forward to TechEd in Spain.

First stop was in Amsterdam for the SDC, well actually Noordwijkerhout, but that is impossible to pronounce and it is “close to Amsterdam” as is everything is in that tiny country. They let me do the keynote (on Astoria and REST) and also speak on Scrum and SQL. There was an obligatory visit with Miguel “look at me!” Castro and Peter Bahaa to the Red Light District. Yes, there was a lot of stories about sex and drugs, but Carl Franklin randomly showed up at the SDC, so we told all on an upcoming episode of DNR, so catch it there.

I then moved on to Sofia, Bulgaria. The girl came in for the weekend and we did some sightseeing in Sofia and Plovdiv. Polvdiv predates ancient Rome and Istanbul, it is an ancient city with fabulous ruins.

Monday brought DevReach 2008. Once again they let me do the keynote, not sure why. But I decided to have some fun with the audience. I told them that I love Bulgarian women (true) and that I met one the night before at the bar and got her phone number. I then put up a photo of Miss Bulgaria. Then I say that she taught me how to speak Bulgarian. I said that she taught me how to say “Welcome to DevReach!” What I then said was : Аз съм глупав и дебел американец (I am a stupid, fat American.) Brought down the house, kinda forgot what the Keynote was about.

After three more breakout sessions, Tim Huckaby and I spoke to the computer science majors at Sofia University. We had a total hoot and took questions as diverse as “will Apple sue Microsoft over the Surface” and “Why is Microsoft not Open Source” to “What do you think of Android?”


After that there was a nice dinner where a lot of booze was drank. Then something crazy happened. Maciej Pilecki walked on hot fire coals. Here are some photos from Steve Smith:


This photo is dark but Maciej and I just walked over the coals, but quickly. The performer and us pose for a photo. I think “ok I survived.”


But then as you can see he decides to make us walk one last time, very slow. My feet were ok, but they were black for two days.

So first of all, after I did this, everyone said “I saw that on myth busters!” They say: “IT IS EASY, MYTHBUSTERS SAID SO! MIND OVER MATTER!”   I have one thing to say to all of them: DO IT YOURSELF AND GET BACK TO ME.

The next night featured the attendee party at the Piano Bar in Sofia, and Carl played and sang “New York State of Mind” for me.

Then it was off to Novi Sad, Serbia for Sinergija 08. I did a few sessions on SQL and Scrum and for the last session of the conference, I was down to drinking beer and brought a case of beer to my session and gave one away to anyone who asked a question. The first question was “Can I have a beer?” Damn Serb outsmarting me.

After the conference I went out drinking with the Sinergija event staff and learned the hard way not to drink with Serbians. Then we drove to Belgrade and I spent the day sightseeing before the long journey home.


These three events were a great experience and the Microsoft community in Central and Eastern Europe is alive and well!

posted on Wednesday, October 22, 2008 1:18:03 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [1] Trackback
# Monday, October 13, 2008

Thursday, October 16, 2008
Introducing Silverlight 2.0: .NET Framework Development in your Web Browser

You must register at https://www.clicktoattend.com/invitation.aspx?code=129954 in order to be admitted to the building and attend.
Microsoft Silverlight 2.0 technology finally brings the power of .NET development and rich user interfaces into the browser. This session will focus on covering what is new in Silverlight 2 starting with how companies are already using this technology. Next we will dive deeper to look at the .NET Frameworks Data, Network and Interface capabilities in Silverlight. Finally we will briefly cover the new Streaming Media support and compare the XAML implementation to WPF. If you’re new to Silverlight 2.0, don’t miss this presentation.

Dmitry Lyalin, Microsoft
Dmitry has been working with Microsoft Technologies for almost 10 years with a variety of companies and titles. As of February 2008 Dmitry joined Microsoft Consulting Services as a Consultant. In this role Dmitry works in the NY/Metro area and across the country to help various customers implement Microsoft Frameworks and Systems efficiently.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Reception 6:00 PM , Program 6:15 PM

Microsoft , 1290 Avenue of the Americas (the AXA building - bet. 51st/52nd Sts.) , 6th floor

B/D/F/V to 47th-50th Sts./Rockefeller Ctr
1 to 50th St./Bway
N/R/W to 49th St./7th Ave.

posted on Monday, October 13, 2008 2:03:07 AM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Microsoft today announced rich new features and performance improvements in WCF and WF 4.0 with code name “Dublin”. Part of Dublin is also an evolution of WAS via IIS so Windows Server will get better at hosting WCF and WF applications. Microsoft is focusing a lot on the server capabilities in its announcement, leading many to call Dublin an “application server.” Dublin is not really an application server, it is an upgrade of WCF, WF, WAS, and all of the application hosting capabilities built into Windows Server. This combination of enhancements will make it far easier to build composite applications.

As part of Dublin, WCF is getting a major upgrade. For starters, WCF is embracing REST in a major way by simplifying the way developers will build REST services via a WCF REST Starter kit. (That is rumored to be available on Codeplex soon.) On top of other messaging enhancement like UDP transports and SOAP over UDP and duplex durable messaging, WCF also will have complete integration with WF via a unified XAML model. This will allow an application to be built entirely in XAML, from the presentation layer (WPF/SilverLight) to the workflow (WF also supports XAML in Dublin) to the actual WCF services.

This is good news for developers and it is nice to see Microsoft take REST very seriously. The Web 2.0 and cloud universe is built with a lot of REST, now Microsoft is giving us a way to hook into that.

There will be a CTP at the PDC. Check it out.

posted on Wednesday, October 1, 2008 2:55:34 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [2] Trackback
# Sunday, September 21, 2008

I am back safe and sound from Mt. Everest. You can catch some good photos here. I have to turn around and head to Seattle for meetings with the Connected Systems Division and an SDR. The Fall schedule looks like this:

posted on Sunday, September 21, 2008 8:50:01 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, August 31, 2008

I'm off to Mt. Everest. Keep track of my trek here.


posted on Sunday, August 31, 2008 12:06:32 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, August 24, 2008

Yesterday was circled on my calendar for many weeks, the date of Saturday August 23rd, 2008 would be the last time I ever step foot on my most sacred and hallowed ground: Shea Stadium. With my upcoming trip to Mt. Everest taking taking me away for all of September and the playoffs no guarantee (and my crazy travel schedule to Europe in October for work), this would be my last visit to Shea Stadium in my life. I estimate that I have been to Shea almost 1,000 times, my estimates:

1977-1981: (year of the strike): Approximately 5 games a year (including Jets games): 25 visits

1982-1987: (a boy's prime baseball years, I was 10-15 and lived 2.5 miles away from Shea): Approximately 25 games a year: 150 visits

1988-1994: Employee of New York Mets/Harry M. Stevens as a Stadium Vendor: Approximately 80 events a year (games, employee parties, religious ceremonies, concerts, playoffs): 560 visits

1995: No Visits (Boycotting the strike of 1994)

1996-2008: Average of 6 games a year: 78 visits

Ok that is approximately 813 times. But when I was a kid Shea would open up to the public in the winter and you could go sleigh riding and cross country skiing for free. I would often go with my dad or best friend Billy. As an adult I would also run the NY Road Runners "Run to Home Plate" (with the Tank) 5K run. So Let's say 850. I round up, 1,000 sounds better.

My Grandfather took me to my first Mets game on Memorial Day, 1977-May 30th for a double header against the Montreal Expos. The Mets lost both games (game 2 box score). My dad took me to my first Jets game at Shea Nov 23rd, 1980, a 31-28 OT win over the Houston Oilers. (And we sat next to a bunch of Oilers fans and they bought me a Jets hat to shut me up! I was always loud and annoying.)

Yesterday got off to a bad start. Kathleen had no idea where our tickets were! We had to go on StubHub and get tickets last minute. We got to Shea on time only to find out that a water bottle leaked in Kathleen's pocketbook and killed her iPod and such. Not a good omen. I felt a loss in my bones, I have witnessed far more losses (mostly from 1977-1983) than wins as a fan in the early years. (Come on my first visit was a double header loss!)

The Mets lost 8-3 last night. It was an ok game, the game was fast paced and the Mets did not give up, making it interesting in the bottom of the 8th inning. I kept telling stories of vending, going to games in 1986, what sections I worked during the Rolling Stones concerts.

Shea holds many memories for me like watching the Jets with my Dad and watching the Mets with my late Grandfather. It was also the venue of my first job, a job that made me rebel against "normal" jobs and lead to a life of enterpreunship. I witnessed some amazing playoff games in 1986, 1988, 1999, 2000, and 2006. Even saw some great Jet games (some great come from behind games with Richard Todd!). I always go between Game 6 and the 1980 US Hockey game vs USSR as the best sporting event of my life.Game 6 is forever part of my life and Endy's catch in 2006 (the other (bad) Game 6) is something I will tell my grandchildren about.

As a lifelong Mets fan, I have wanted to tear the place down since about 1992, once the new stadiums started going up. I got my dream a few years ago with the agreement to build CitiField.The new place looks great, it will make a great home for the Mets. I can't wait to go to a few games there.

At 9:54 pm, I looked at my cell phone for the time, paused, and then walked over the threshold at Gate C, exiting the stadium for my very last time. Kathleen just rolled her eyes, but a huge chapter of my life just closed.

So long and thanks for the memories. We'll miss you William A. Shea Municipal Stadium.

Posted by Steve (with a tear in my eye) in New York

posted on Sunday, August 24, 2008 1:57:36 PM (Eastern Daylight Time, UTC-04:00)  #    Comments [2] Trackback