We recently hosted a conference for our Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs). Over a thousand of our MVPs for all products attended the summit from all over the world. From a timing perspective, this was great having this right on the heels of the PDC. This gave us a chance to drill down deeper on a lot of the things that we talked about at PDC and get some valuable feedback from the MVPs.
Here are some of the key takeaways: As expected, Linq was a bit hit. Device developers were excited about our plan to bring strategic new desktop APIs to smart devices as part of our Compact Framework enhancements. Developer Security MVPs got together for the first time and got face time with Microsoft experts. One of our MVPs from Italy took pictures to show to his friends back home. He said that he wanted to show his friends and colleagues back home that Microsoft is not a gated-community surrounded with security guards – it’s a place where real people work on things that they are passionate about. A lot of the MVPs wanted early preview of our specs. CTPs were generally considered very positive – good feedback about being more informative about what is new, what works and doesn’t work with the CTP drops.
One of my favorite quotes was by Jim Duffy, MVP for Visual Basic. Here’s a quote from his blog post VB's mojo is back!
“Just got back from a great MVP Summit... Gotta give some props to the VB.NET team for all their hard work and willingness to listen to and reply to our feedback. I don't know about the rest of the VB MVPs but I'm getting the distinct feeling that VB's mojo is starting to return. This is based on talking to other VB MVPs, checking out all the features of VS 2005, and comments made by the VB team about what to watch for in the future. … VB.NET is the obvious .NET development choice when it comes to developer productivity and getting the job done now.” – Jim Duffy, VB MVP.
Overall, it was a great event that enabled us to share with our MVPs what we are working on and be able to get valuable feedback. Thanks to the MVPs for both helping us build the right products as well as being the core part of our vibrant community.