TechEd Europe 2004 (Amsterdam)

My main objective is to evangelize (don't blame me, I don't like the word evangelism either) SQL Server 2005. Although this objective fills 100% of my time, I took on the task of deciding which sessions go into the Developer Tools and Technologies track for TechEd Europe so I can fill some other 10%. Obviously we base ourselves on the TechEd US session list but there are some differences because of regional accents, number of sessions that can be allocated and last but not least because we want to give some regional stars the opportunity to deliver their 'hit' presentations at TechEd.

Now, finding great sessions and putting them on the agenda is easy. The hard part is dropping good sessions. I'm looking at about 150 sessions that would be worth delivering but I can only retain 72. On top of that, we are presenting at this year's TechEd quite a lot of content on Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005. I'm pretty sure many developers are looking forward to those information but the reality is that every Whidbey session will take a slot that could have been filled by a today's technology session.

It's a dilemma, much like deciding which features will go in the next release of a your software. It reminds me of the oocasion where I had the honnor to attend a meeting of the Visual Basic PM's. One PM - I can't remember which subsystem he was responsible for - was told that he couldn't implement all the priority one features on his list. I don't think he slept well that night.

Anyway, back to TechEd. The verdict is that there will be a 75% current tech - 25% Whidbey partition for the dev & tools track. Trying to do the right thing ain't easy.

I find myself in Istanbul today. Although less than 4 hours flying from Belgium - where I live - a completely different type of place. Facinating.