TechDays 2008 agenda is finalized

It’s great to see our agenda for the TechDays getting finalized. If you have not yet registered there is some good news and some bad news: registration for the launch event on the 11th is closed. Registration for TechDays is still open at the time of writing.

Since my previous post some changes have been made, new speakers added, some sessions have adapted. Please do take the time to look at the scheduling as some changes there have been made as well. 

 Before going into detail on some of the changes I would like to take the time to thank my colleagues. All the credit for this goes out to:

  • Gill Cleeren, now a new Regional Director and MVP (congrats Gill!). Gill was working on the agenda before I joined the team and did a great job at preparing the agenda and reaching the speakers.
  • Arlindo Alves, IT Pro Evangelist in the same team as I work. Arlindo did a great job getting the top speakers here.
  • Tom Mertens: thanks for all the help and time answering all my questions.

And now, let’s get to the news. First of all we have a wonderful keynote speaker on the 12th of March (first day of the TechDays event): Rafal Lukawiecki. Rafal is a regular speaker at big events such as TechEd Barcelona. Rafal is not only going to do the keynote but will also be presenting some sessions.

In addition to our keynote speaker, here is a list of sessions that have been added.

Building Applications with Silverlight 2.0 (Nikhil Kothari)
Learn how to use Silverlight for building your rich internet applications using the power of managed code, .NET and XAML UI on the client. This session will demonstrates using the Silverlight presentation framework including controls, the application model, the networking stack and other new capabilities that Silverlight brings to browsers for the next-generation of cross-browser and cross-platform applications.

10 Things to Love in .NET 3.5 (Roy Osherove) – this session is a replacement
In this talk we'll explore 10 things every developer should know about and find valueble in the .NET 3.5 framework and extensions. From LINQ and Lambdas to WF and WCF, this talk will be a quick overview of each of the major cool stuff in .NET 3.5.

What's new for developers in SQL Server 2008? ( Dandy Weyn )
As a developer you want to understand the new features in SQL Server 2008.
In this session you will learn how to work with the new data/time datatypes as well as implementing new T-SQL Features such as the MERGE statement.
You will learn how to enable a database for change data capture and track changes in data throughout an ETL data process.
You will also see on how to implement geospatial data and work with FILESTREAM objects.
This session is focusing on database developer SQL Server side topics.

Applied Service Oriented Architecture (Steven Wilssens)
During this session we will have a look at what the most recent buzzword in the IT industry means for one of the product teams at Microsoft. Although it is still in beta, Popfly was recently chosen as one of the 25 most innovative products by PC World. See how SOA, short for Service Oriented Architecture, works for a product that was build using a variety of Microsoft services, what the team has learned from this experience, and how this approach can work for you.

Domain Specific Development with Visual Studio Domain Specific Language (DSL) Tools (Jelle Druyts)
As one of the pillars of the Software Factories initiative, Domain Specific Languages (DSLs) provide a way to describe your business domain in a language closer to the actual problem than using traditional programming code.
The Visual Studio Domain Specific Language Tools allow developers to create their own graphical designers and code generation tools – much like the ones you can find in Visual Studio today, such as the Class Designer.
In this session, you will learn how to develop your own DSLs inside Visual Studio and see an example of a real-world DSL that simplifies your life as a developer: the Configuration Section Designer.

Running externalized Business Rules in any .Net application (including Sharepoint) with the Workflow Foundation Rules Engine (Serge Luca)
As an important subsystem of the .Net Framework 3.0 and 3.5, Windows Workflow Foundation provides 2 engines: a Workflow Engine and a Rules Engine. The Rules Engine is a very interesting way to isolate the Business Rules from the other parts of the application which will be therefore much easier to maintain; the Rules Engine also manages interaction between rules thanks to its forward chaining feature; another benefit is that a business analyst or a power user can modify the business rules without having to recompile the application.
In this session, we will have an overview of the Rules Engine , you will see how to store business rules in a repository , how to use rules without workflow , how to organize the code  and how to use the Rules engine in any application. We will take the case of Microsoft Windows Sharepoint Services 3 or MOSS 2007 web parts.

Matt Gibbs is also giving a lunch session on ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions (previously known as ASP.NET Futures).

See you there!