I'm here at Internet Alley in the hallway of the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas. First, let me say that I have never been a hotel complex this big. Not only are the rooms huge (mine is 1200 square feet and has two televisions and a marble bathroom) but so is everything else.
The PDC is full of geeks, and for the most part, we dress the part (see comment about Bill's hairdo below. hehe). This conference has attracted a lot of graphic/web designers, so there are tons of clubby types running around in sport coats. Now I know why the reception at TAO tonight is as popular as it is. I'll check out the giant Bhudda, but clubs don't do much for me. Nevertheless, it looks like a good reception.
As is tradition with the upper level Microsoft Conferences, Bill Gates offered today's opening keynote. He bucked his past trend of including tons of bulleted slides, and instead just talked for a couple hours.
Unfortunately for Bill, that doesn't work well. It was obvious that he was still going by his usual slides on the teleprompter, but without those slides visible to us, there was no transition. Instead, he just went directly from one topic to the next, without pause or introduction.
I normally like his keynotes, but this one was not his best. He's trying to get away from bulleted slides, though, and for that, I give him a lot of credit
(PS: Bill, who does your hair? you look like you rolled out of bed and on to the stage)
At the end of the keynote was a well-prepared "interview" with Tim O'Reilly. Tim did his best to be a little hard-edged, and it did actually help draw you in. While it started off pretty soft, the interview picked up and became pretty interesting.
MySpace.com CTO and an engineer also gave a testimonial as part of the keynote. Boy, those guys make me feel old. As part of the keynote, they mentioned that their site is running SQL Server 2005 and ASP.NET 2.0, and is the second most hit site on the web, surpassing even Google. For those of you who question whether or not SQL 2005 and ASP.NET 2.0 are ready for prime time, just check out what these guys have done.
Am I the only person that thinks dedicating a huge chunk of screen real-estate to an analog clock is a waste of space? The clock appeared on the old KDE and Gnome screenshots as well, so it must just be something other folks like. I don't plan to have one on the sidebar :)
Items of note:
- There is a new build of IE available for download
- ATLAS has a go-live license as of today
- WPF/e talk later today
The goods for MIX 06 include VS 2005 standard edition, a bootable DVD of Vista, some IE bits and some samples.