Northeast Roadshow - Winter Edition

Northeast RoadshowWhoa!  It seems like I've just finished my laundry from our last outing, and now Chris and I are heading back out for the Winter Roadshow.  We're brewing up a new slate of content for you, including jQuery and ASP.NET 3.5 AJAX, WPF, WF, Silverlight and WCF/REST, and even some interesting things from Microsoft Research!

We're returning to the same six cities we visited in the fall (register via the city links below); there's a few new venues in the mix so make sure you read the fine print.


Rochester, NY Tuesday, December 2nd
Albany, NY Wednesday, December 3rd
Burlington, VT Thursday, December 4th
Farmington, CT Tuesday, December 9th
Waltham, MA Monday, December 15th
Augusta, ME Tuesday, December 16th


THE AGENDA (N.B. Rochester starts 30 minutes earlier.)

Winter Scene

8:30 Registrate, Caffeinate, Situate
9:00 Morning TechUpdate

Before we dive into the sessions, we’ll take some time to update you on the latest news, tools and technology from the developer world.

9:15 Turbo Boosting for Web Developers: Using jQuery and ASP.NET 3.5 AJAX

Like things that help you go faster? Of course! That’s why we’re focusing this session on the powerful set of features that jQuery and ASP.NET 3.5 offer web developers. We’ll get up to speed with jQuery, a popular open source JavaScript library with powerful features, a concise syntax with chained commands, but at the same time is fully extensible via a plugin-based architecture. Microsoft will be distributing jQuery (as-is) with Visual Studio going forward, and offers IntelliSense support for jQuery as well. We’ll complement that with a look at the latest in ASP.NET 3.5 AJAX with Visual Studio 2008 to provide extra code-writing acceleration along the way. Like hitting “Boost” in your favorite racing game, jQuery and ASP.NET 3.5 AJAX will have you speeding toward great rich internet applications in no time!

10:45 Workflow Foundation (WF) Steals the Show

As Shakespeare put it, “All the world’s a stage”, and WPF and WCF love to bask in the limelight, but now it’s time for their cousin, Windows Workflow Foundation, to assume the leading role.  We’ll go beyond the usual introductory demos to show that, despite lacking a third letter in its acronym, WF is a very powerful environment for building robust and scalable applications that capture complex and real-world business processes.  From dashing good looks (a visual designer which you can even host in your own applications) to dazzling abilities such as new options for integration with WCF (both as a service provider and consumer), resumable programmable activities as building blocks, and built-in services for persistence, transactions, scheduling and tracking, WF is a standout performer for any application.  We’ll have Hamlet saying, “The Workflow’s the thing!”

12:00 Lunch in the Lab: A Look at Tools & Tech from Microsoft Research

Grab some lunch, get out your Bunsen burners and microscopes, and join us as we don lab coats and take a tour of the latest and greatest tools and technology from Microsoft Research. From developer tools that you can use today like CHESS and Pex, future tech like DryadLINQ, to the just plain cool of AutoCollage, Boku, and SecondLight, there’s a lot for us to experiment on. We promise not to set anything on fire in this lab, well, unless you ask nicely…

1:00 Deeper into Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF)

Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) has a rich set of features to create visually appealing, high-performance applications on the .NET Framework with declarative markup. And perhaps you’ve seen the “hello world” demos and get the general idea. But you say “Great! What else can I do with it?” Funny you should ask, because that’s exactly what this session is about. After a brief introduction to WPF, we’ll dive into the host of new features that .NET 3.5 Service Pack 1 has brought – enhanced 3D capabilities, Visual Studio designer improvements, and more. We’ll cover important WPF topics such as interoperability with WinForms and achieving reuse via resources, templates, and user controls. Finally, we’ll round out the talk by showing the new WPF Toolkit, including new WPF controls like Calendar, DatePicker, and DataGrid. Now, aren’t you glad you asked?

2:30 Adventures in Data with Silverlight, WCF REST, and ADO.NET Data Services

You’ve heard that REST is the talk of the town (well, the really geeky part of town) these days, but what does it mean to you, someone who needs to get work DONE? Get ready to improve your Silverlight skills, because this session features a practical, code-based focus on the use of the new WCF REST Starter Kit, ADO.NET Data Services (formerly Astoria), and databinding techniques to tap the power of RESTful services.  A from-scratch implementation will be created, using Silverlight to build a data-centric application covering concepts such as the WebClient and HTTPWebRequest objects, syndication formats, cross domain policy, and data binding in XAML. 

3:50 Wrapup, Evals, and Giveaways

Free stuff.. does it get any better?


Thank you! A huge thanks goes to the companies and organizations who volunteer their space for the Roadshow visits!

This time, we return to two venues that have been great hosts for previous Roadshows.  In Rochester, NY, we again descend upon Rochester Institute of Technology's Golisano Auditorium.  In Burlington, VT (well, Williston, actually), we return to Vermont Technical College.

In the Albany, NY area, Autotask has graciously offered their meeting facilities for the event. 

Last, but by no means least, thanks to great support by the developer community in Maine (and a 100% packed room last time!), we're running the Roadshow in the much larger Florian Auditorium at the Central Maine Commerce Center.