Azure Development Community Interview – Microsoft MVP: Ken Cenerelli

Welcome to this week’s interview with an Azure Development genius! We're continuing our remix of interviews. This remix is with...

Ken Cenerelli Ken Cenerelli's avatar

Ken's MVP Profile:

And here is his User Page: Ken Cenerelli

Ken has won several TechNet Guru awards and is a Microsoft MVP!

Some of his MSDN achievements include:

  • 20 TechNet Wiki Articles
  • 1,951 Wiki Edits!
  • 1,059 Wiki Comments
  • 16 Forum Answers and 53 Forum Replies!
  • 169 Blog Comments!
  • 5K+ Recognition Points
  • 5 Gallery Items with 1,455 downloads on them!

Here are some of Ken's top Wiki articles:

One thing I love about Ken's community contributions is that he's not only contributing high-quality articles, but he's also helping out a ton with all those Wiki edits!


Alright, it's time for the interview! It's interview time! Enter the interview! Enter the view of the interview! Is it awkward yet? Great! Then let's go...



Who are you, where are you, and what do you do? What are your specialty technologies?

My name is Ken Cenerelli and I live with my wife Renée in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. I am located about one hour west of Toronto. I am have been a developer for over 13 years. I presently work for a water/wastewater engineering firm in Guelph as a Programmer Writer. This means that I do both technical writing and development tasks in my job.

In July 2015, I was selected as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for my work with the .NET Platform in the developer community. I am co-organizer of my local .NET User Group and I am an active blogger. As a public speaker on emerging technologies, I have spoken at conferences across North America. I have also been a technical reviewer on multiple technology books.

01. Ken Cenerelli at Wrigley Field for a Chicago Cubs game in 2013.


What are your big projects right now?

Since I only recently became an MVP I am trying to focus on that right now. I am getting comfortable with the program requirements. I am also reading a lot on Visual Studio 2015 and Windows 10. I am currently in the midst of doing a technical review of an upcoming book on C# 6.0. As well, I am preparing new talks to submit to conferences.


Where can the Azure Development Community publish their articles?

The TechNet Wiki provides a way to publish your ideas to more than just your blog. I recently wrote an article entitled Write Once, Publish Anywhere [] for the Canadian Developer Connection MSDN blog. In it I talk about the fact that there are lots of ways to contribute content to other sites including the TechNet Wiki. These contributions can then be used on your own blog as a way to boost its content. The crux of the article is that you can get better exposure for your ideas and your blog by submitting to other sites than just your own.

02. Ken and wife Renee with The Simpsons at Universal Orlando in 2014.

When I transitioned from developer to programmer writer I realized that aside from my own blog articles I did not have a portfolio of technical writing to demonstrate my writing skills. I decided to investigate the TechNet Wiki and I liked what I saw.


What do you write about? What do you edit and contribute to?

When I started writing I was focused mostly on Azure and Application Insights. I am now writing more articles around C# and .NET. These are both areas of interest for me so I feel I will continue in these veins.

When I edit TechNet Wiki articles, I try to read new articles and contribute where I can. Even if it is just a few tags. I also try to collate lots of information. I recently went through all of the survival guides and added See Also links which pointed to the Survival Guides Portal. I then added each of these articles to the portal. It is this circular referencing which helps new Wiki members find things more easily.

03. Ken Cenerelli speaking in 2014.


What are your favorite articles you’ve contributed?

I have done three articles on Application Insights and I hope to contribute more in the future. Of the three MVC articles I have contributed, the one on Using Microsoft Application Insights in an MVC application [] is my favourite as it was the first in-depth article I wrote and it was my first Featured Article.


Who has impressed you in the community, and why?

I find the dedication of a lot of the active authors really impressive. When I started out I wrote my first few articles on Azure and so I modelled them on posts by Chervine Bhiwoo []. Since then I have followed the work of: Richard Mueller, Durval Ramos, Pete Laker (XAML guy), Andy Oneill, and Ed Price. All of these people (and many, many more) make the TechNet Wiki an excellent resource for learning.


Do you have any tips for new community authors?

Make the commitment to start. Once you have you will see how quick and easy it can be to contribute.

However, before you write your first article I would suggest you edit a TechNet Wiki article to get comfortable with the editor and to see how quality articles are put together.

Once you know you want to author an article, then:

  • Pick a topic and do a quick search to see if it has been done. If it has then give it a new spin or choose something else to write about.
  • Once you have your topic, start small. Create something that you can complete.
  • Focus on formatting and accuracy. Check your spelling.
  • Make sure it is the best it can be before you are done. Do not rely on TechNet members to clean up your article.
  • If you use TechNet Wiki, use Firefox as your default TechNet Wiki browser. Chrome and IE can do some crazy stuff.
  • Enter it in the TechNet Guru Competition [] and then start your next article.



Awesome! That's some fantastic advice!

Please join me in thanking Ken for his contributions so far, as we look forward to more great achievements from Ken as an MVP!


Remember to keep your head in the clouds!

- Ninja Ed