TechEd 2013 Debriefing: One Developer’s Position

June 12, 2013 at 2:04 pm | Posted in Certification Paths, Microsoft, Vendor news | 2 Comments
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As with each Microsoft convention, much fun was enjoyed by all. Perhaps too much fun,  if that’s possible. Besides the nightly siren call of Rue Bourbon and limitless litany of new product versions (Visual Studio 2013 AND SQL Server 2014 … really?),  there were a few drumbeats that bear repeating.

George and Josh strike a pose.

George and Josh strike a pose


Head in the Clouds

The conference kicked off with the keynote from Brad Anderson. Microsoft continues to improve and promote its cloud offering, known as Windows Azure. For the uninitiated, Windows Azure is Microsoft’s cloud-based deployment and management system for applications, services and raw virtual machines.

Although Microsoft announced a huge investment in its data centers, particularly in mainland China, for me the big news was the changes to its previous pricing model. Only running virtual machines will be charged, and billing is now per minute rather than per hour. MSDN server licenses can be used at no charge, and MSDN and MSDN subscriptions with Cloud Essentials or Accelerate will earn free monthly credits for Azure. (See more info at Visual Studio Magazine,

Weeping and Gnashing of Teeth

This was a common refrain in most of the Windows 8 App development sessions I attended.  Despite the wide adoption of WPF and .NET languages such as C#, the clear business trend is driving development toward Web technologies. The holy grail is to develop an application once and deploy it anywhere, such that a Web site can be deployed to mobile devices offline with minimal effort.

You may not like it, but HTML5 and JavaScript are here to stay and are only growing in popularity.

Very few attendees in these sessions relished the thought of using Web-based technologies to develop stand-alone Windows applications. I find that completely understandable, considering how many companies silo Web and Windows developers and rarely develop a shareable codebase between the two. But Microsoft is making overtures to box in the wily JavaScript into type safety and advanced OOP design with TypeScript.

I am sure that more happened (MVC4, LightSwitch, etc.), but between the NOLA haze and gasoline-induced headache on the drive back, you’re lucky that I remember this much. So long, Microsoft, hope to see all of you at  TechEd next time!

George is a race car driver

George is a race car driver
(faster than a blue screen of death?)


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  1. Where are the Tina photos??

    • Those will be coming in George’s post… be patient!

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