There are two rules of blogging that the experts seem to all agree on: don't don't blog about the fact you've not been blogging, and don't post pictures of your cat. So I'll not say anything more about the fact I've been really busy lately and haven't been blogging as much as I'd like ...

One reason I've been busy was that I spoke at a local event yesterday, the annual http://www.ecnw.org/BoeingXMLconf/Boeing_xml_conference_2007.html conference. It was a great opportunity to hear firsthand about some of the XML projects that Boeing is tackling, and it was also fun for me because I worked at Boeing long ago ... I remember the excitement of typing Fortran programs directly to disk when we got a shiny new PDP 11/70 minicomputer. Compared to submitting batches of punch cards to the IBM 360 mainframe, this represented a big leap in programmer productivity!

At yesterday's conference there were presentations on specific XML projects around standards like S1000D, vendor presentations on emerging XML technologies, descriptions of Boeing's XML and SOA infrastructure, and a panel discussion on how to get started with XML.

The Q&A after the sessions provided a glimpse of the internal dialog at Boeing around XML technologies, and many questions reflected a hands-on perspective. As Altova's Alexander Falk posted yesterday,

XML is now ubiquitous. It is all-pervasive, all-encompassing. It is the lingua franca of how systems talk to one another, how data is transported, how content is stored, reused, and manipulated.

Thanks to Gene Owen, Kathryn Breininger, Scott Tsao, and everyone else for putting on a great event at Boeing. I hope to get a chance to attend again next year, to follow how the use of XML continues to grow at my "alma mater."