Well, been super busy since the beginning of the new year, and haven't had a lot of time to blog.
Been playing a lot with Managed DirectX and Visual Studio Team System (together, and seperately).
We had a great MSDN Developer Chat, hosted by MSDN Canada, with experts like Tom Miller (the creator of Managed DirectX), David Weller, and Rick Hoskins. We had a whole bunch of questions. Tom was typing furiously, aswering a huge number. You can check out the chat transcript at http://www.msdn.microsoft.com/canada/chats/transcripts/2005_1_13.aspx . It's worth a read.
Speaking of worth a read, Tom's Latest Book, Beginning 3D Game Programming (SAMS, ISBN: 0-672-32661-2, Amazon, Chapters ) is just plain EXCELLENT! I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to get starting with Direct3D, for both game development, or even for building cool apps and utilities. In most cases, Managed DirectX is more than adequate to handle your every need!
Team System ROCKS! Even in its current pre-Beta 2 state, the Dec Community Tech Preview (available to MSDN Subscribers through subscriber downloads) is working pretty well. I'm very impressed (and so are many customers) with the project management/development lifecycle management integration into the system, from code writing and debugging, to testing, to change management (a la source control engine). The fact that you can extend the template set to include different methodologies, and have that drive your project document template creation, developer assistance, work items (bugs, work tasks, etc), permissions, roles, and change management check-in criteria is earth-shattering. Finally, we have tools that will allow everyone to participate painlessly (I hope) in the full lifecycle of development, from one common toolset (well, two, if you include Microsoft Project for the project managers). If you haven't looked at it, you should, even if you use other application design tools. I've never seen, EVER, a more comprehensive, easy to use (for every role) set of tools like this. This is going to REVOLUTIONIZE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT. PERIOD.
More info at the Visual Studio Team System home page on MSDN.