Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Technical Learning Guides (TLGs) – Who are they?

At TechEd 2006 we’ve got a great group of Technical Learning Guides (TLGs) ready to help you with any questions you may have with the Hands-on Labs in the TLC.

Just in case you don’t know, the TLGs are absolutely amazing! From a pool of over 400 applicants, 90 were selected. The selection process was a difficult one, as many, many talented and qualified applicants had to be turned away.

What does that mean for the TechEd attendee? Why, nothing but the best! The TLGs here at TechEd 2006 come from 27 countries and are all working the HOLs at TechEd because they’re passionate about technology and want to be here to help you with any questions you may have. These individuals have given up a week of their time (some more) and are on-site at TechEd.

These highly qualified Technical Learning Guides are just like all of us. They have a thirst for the latest and greatest technology and love sharing knowledge and educating/assisting others.

A brief sampling of the TLG qualifications:

  • All are Microsoft Certified Trainers (MCT) and have over 515 years of combined MCT experience!
  • Fluent in over 15 spoken languages as well as 6 computer languages.
  • Are certified in over 40 different areas.
  • More than 15 MVPs – Most Valuable Professional for a specific Microsoft technology.
  • Many are business owners, within in the real world with the technologies they support here.
  • The average years of teaching experience for a typical TLG is 7 years. Many have been working in their industry for 10-15 years or more.

An aerial view of the TLGs, spelling MCT TLG:

Monday, June 12, 2006

TechEd 2006: Day 1 Pictures

If you’re not able to attend TechEd, or are just curious about how things are going, here’s a journey through TechEd 2006, in pictures.

Today is the first full day of the event and man, it is busy!

It’s standing room only here at this Technical Learning Center (TLC) Theater Session

Excited to do some demo stations

Checking out the mobile devices, chatting with experts and viewing some of the Mobility offerings.

What can the Messaging and Office System areas do for you? Chat with an expert, view a demo, engage yourself!

Attendees drill into some of the Hands-on Labs

The exhibitors were kept busy with a stream of excited and intrigued attendees

Another view of the expo floor

And another view of the exhibitors

Is it Connected Systems you’re interested in? Synch up with some of the folks at the demo stations in the Connected Systems area.

TechEd is here!

It’s Monday and TechEd 2006 is in full swing!

We kicked off the event with last night’s Keynotes. Bob Muglia, Ray Ozzie, and Chris Capossela. The room set was impressive. The stage setup (as seen below) was highlighted with blue and violet tones and thanks to massive projection screens, there wasn’t a bad seat in the house! Like a concert (or a really bad TSA line) people were lined up and excited to get into and experience the keynotes. Unlike the long, slow lines at the airport, the mass of people were ushered into the keynote hall quickly and efficiently.

The combination of a good message (way to go speech writers!), engaging demos, and a cool space all combined to make it a great kickoff to TechEd 2006.

Here are some pictures from last night:

Filing into the keynote.

Getting seats.

Some cool videos, view from the very back of the keynote hall.

If you missed the keynote, you can check it out at the links below.

View at your preferred bit rate: 300 Kbps 100Kbps 56 Kbps

So you've seen the keynote hall with attendees in it, here's what the keynote hall looked like before it was ready for the public.

Lighting Rigs

Stage Setup


Huge projectors

Announcing: Windows Live Dev (Beta)

The Windows Live Platform team has launched Windows Live Dev (http://dev.live.com/) as a portal for developers looking for information on the Windows Live Platform. The site includes information on developing with Live Services, including Custom Domains, Expo, Gadgets, Live ID, Messenger, Search, Spaces, and Virtual Earth. It also has sections with information for Hardware developers, business opportunities with Live, and an area where we will be highlighting interesting mashups, developed here at Microsoft or out in the community.

This initial offering is still in beta. It will grow with more content, as well as more services geared toward developers, including a cool new way to work with Windows Live Contacts (coming later this week), information on developing with more services as APIs come online, and a single appID provisioning experience.

Check it out!

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Just one day until TechEd opens!

We're putting the finishing touches on everything here at the Boston Convention & Exposition Center and I thought I'd share out another picture post.

Expo Area

Bookstore & Company Store

T-Shirt Distribution

Hands-on Labs

Thursday, June 08, 2006

How to maximize your time at TechEd

With TechEd 2006 just a few days away, you may be asking yourself, "How can I maximize my time and experience at TechEd?" Between the keynotes, strategic briefings, breakout sessions, TLC Theater sessions, product demos, Hands-on labs, visiting the exhibitor hall, chatting with experts and connecting with others in your field, there are thousands of sessions/demos/labs/networking opportunities that you could do while at TechEd! Exhausting, isn't it?

I've got a way to make some sort of sense out of all of the opportunity at TechEd. It's a rather simple solution (that many of you may already use) but one that will help you navigate through the sea of options and opportunity at TechEd. Use CommNet to review session titles, abstracts, and listen to an audio preview of certain Hands-on Labs.

Curious how to do this? Check out this how-to video, courtesy of Dick Carlson.

Get packing, get excited and we'll see you on Sunday!

On Site in Boston

We've arrived in Boston for TechEd and I wanted to share a picture post, showcasing how the various TechEd areas are progressing. Things are looking great and we're excited for everyone to get here for Sunday's keynote!

Microsoft New England Welcomes you to Boston!

TechEd Registration
FYI: There are a total of 55 registration kiosks to help you get checked in and on your way at TechEd!

Expo Hall Signage

The Expo Hall is really coming together!

Technical Learning Center
The Technical Learning Center (TLC) is looking great! Divided into three color-coded areas, it groups together all the Hands-on Lab area, Theaters, demo stations, and information booths. It'll be your one-stop-shop to connect with an expert, try out some of the new features and dive deeper into current ones, and see what's new with Microsoft.

Hands-on Labs

TLC Theaters

Demo Stations

CommNet Computers
Dispersed around the Convention Center are thousands of CommNet Computers. Session information at your fingertips, you'll want to stop by a CommNet Computer station to check out the latest TechEd info. (You can also check out this blog or Brian's Blog for breaking blogging posts too! :) )

TechEd 2006 Bag!

What does the bag look like?
Can we see the bag?

Yes, readers. You can. :)

Here's a preview of the TechEd 2006 bag!

As you can see, this year's TechEd attendee bag is a really cool one. A messenger type bag, it is navy blue and black with a nicely padded shoulder strap. It has lots of cool pockets and comes with a rubber nametag. Inside, you'll find a plethora of information: DVDs with the beta builds of some hot Microsoft software, magazines, and a whole lot more!

Check out this post on Brian's blog for a complete run down on the bag and its bits!

OFC HOL Interviews Posted

Today I posted four interviews with Karen Henderson, the HOL Technical Learning Guide Lead for the OFC track.

OFC001Building InfoPath Forms that Run As Both Rich Client and Browser Applications
OFC002Designing Content Driven Websites with Office SharePoint Server 2007
OFC004What’s New in SharePoint Services Version Three: Feature Walkthrough
OFC005Connecting Groove Workspaces to Enterprise Systems

With Office 2007 in Beta 2 and scheduled to be launched in January 2007, these Office HOLs will be a great way to get some hands-on experience with the new version of the Office System!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Win an Official TechEd 2006 Content Team sweater!

In case you haven't heard, Brian Marble, the TechEd US Content Owner, is holding a contest on his blog to guess the projected attendance for the session with the highest demand at TechEd.

What is this session?

SVR333 - Advanced Windows Troubleshooting with Sysinternals Filemon and Regmon

Whomever can guess the projected attendance of Mark and Davids' session SVR333 (by posting a comment in Brian's blog) will receive one of the official TechEd Content Team Cutter & Buck sweaters (TechEd 2006 Content Team is embroidered on the left sleeve) given to just the TechEd track owners. Brian will identify the person that guessed closest on the evening of June 11 and list the winner on this blog June 12.

Good luck, everyone!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Attendee Bag Build

This picture goes out to Eric Shurts, who asked, "So, what's the chance of getting a sneak peak at the bags that will be given to all attendees at registration?"

As we all know, attendees are given a lot of great goodies when they check in at registration. Contained within these bags are all sorts of different collateral, CDs and other fun stuff to peruse. I know this probably isn't quite what you wanted, Eric, but here's a sneak peek of the attendee bag build!

Check out VirtualTechEd.com

New to this year's TechEd line up is VirtualTechEd.com. VirtualTechEd.com's team of editors and vloggers will be looking for the best breakout sessions, most interesting demos and compelling executive interviews throughout the week.

Whether you're at TechEd and can't see everything, or want to see what you are missing, visit http://www.virtualteched.com/ for the latest news and on-site video logs.

Things are coming together in Boston!

With less than five days until the start of TechEd06, things are shaping up nicely at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

We’ve got signs at the airport:

The expo hall is being assembled:

As is the TLC:

And the Registration area:

And there's still many boxes to unpack!

More pictures to come as we get onsite and TechEd06 begins!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Two SQL Server 2005 HOL Interviews Posted

It’s Monday morning and I’ve posted two new HOL interviews for registered attendees to preview.

These interviews are with noted SQL expert, Kimberly Tripp and cover the two HOLs that she designed for TechEd 2006:

DAT007SQL Server 2005 Database Mirroring
DAT010SQL Server 2005 Table and Index Partitioning

To be honest, my knowledge of SQL Server is very basic. I’ve read the “Dummies” edition of SQL Server 2005, but other than that introduction to relational database design, I don’t have any real depth of knowledge into the topic. I must say, however, that after chatting with Kimberly Tripp, I am very excited about her two SQL Server 2005 HOLs and I plan to sit down and go through at least one, if not both of them at TechEd. I’d encourage anyone interested in SQL Server 2005 to sit down at the Database Development and Administration section in the TLC and go through Kimberly’s HOLs. They will prove to be engaging, informative, and educational; isn’t that why you’re coming to TechEd after all? :)