Chris Bowen's Blog

Development Practices, Tools, Technology, and Community

  • Chris Bowen's Blog

    Essential WCF to the Printer!


    EssentialWCFCoverIn the rush of the past week, I forgot to post that "Essential Windows Communication Foundation" has gone to the printer and will be shipping soon! 

    I joined up with fellow New England area Microsoft guys Steve Resnick and Rich Crane (whose post reminded me to write this) to create this book and I'm very excited by the results.

    One of our goals was to incorporate the new WCF features of the .NET Framework 3.5 and Visual Studio 2008.  So, in addition to the core WCF topics, you'll also see coverage of areas such as RSS/ATOM syndication, peer networking, REST, Workflow integration, and new tools/integration with VS 2008. 

    Another goal was to have the book on shelves in time for the worldwide 2008 launch events (BTW, I'll be speaking at most of the ones in the northeast), and it seems that's going to happen!

    For those of you who pick up a copy, you have our thanks!  We hope it helps you along your way to creating fantastic WCF applications with .NET 3.x.


  • Chris Bowen's Blog

    Congratulations to our New and Continuing Northeastern MVPs


    Microsoft_MVP_logo_1I'd like to pass along congratulations to our new and re-awarded MVPs (Most Valuable Professionals) in New England and upstate New York for the first quarter of 2008:

    • Ho Yin Au: Windows - PC Games
    • Mark Blomsma: Visual Developer - Visual C#
    • Peter Blum: Visual Developer - ASP/ASP.NET
    • John D. Carrona: Windows - Networking
    • SB Chatterjee: Microsoft Office Groove
    • Richard Hale Shaw: Visual Developer - Visual C#
    • Roy Harvey: Windows Server System - SQL Server
    • Scot Hillier: Windows Server - Windows SharePoint Services
    • Robert Hurlbut: Visual Developer - Security
    • Patrick Hynds: Visual Developer - Security
    • Duane Laflotte: Visual Developer - Security
    • Tony Northrup: Windows - Networking
    • Fritz Onion: Visual Developer - ASP/ASP.NET
    • Chris Pels: Windows Server System - XML
    • Dave Porter: Windows - Security
    • John M. Raymond: Windows - Shell/User
    • Michael Ruminer: Visual Developer - Team System
    • Don Sorcinelli: Windows - Mobile Devices
    • C David Tobie: Windows - Printing/Imaging
    • Billy Wang: Windows - PC Games
    • Robert E. Zaret: Windows - Windows Embedded

    These people have demonstrated technical knowledge and an ongoing commitment to the overall Microsoft community, online and/or in person, in their respective specialities and beyond.

    Great job, everyone!  Keep up the fantastic community work!


  • Chris Bowen's Blog

    Special Multi User Group Event with David Chappell


    David Chappell I'm excited to announce that we've organized a special evening event for developers and architects featuring David Chappell.  David (bio below) is an industry veteran, well-respected for his ability to consistently convey technical content and insights in an engaging manner.

    He'll be speaking on "Understanding Software + Services":

    The move to service-orientation is well underway, both inside enterprises and on the Internet. What role does traditional software play in a world of on-line services? In particular, how is Microsoft approaching the combination of software plus services? This presentation provides an overview of this area, giving an introduction to and a perspective on this emerging combination.

    The event is January 31st from 6-8 PM at the 201 Jones Road Microsoft office in Waltham, MA.  This unique event is a combined group effort for the following user groups:

    I hope you're able to take advantage of this rare opportunity!


    P.S.  Here is David's Bio:

    David Chappell is Principal of Chappell & Associates in San Francisco, California. Through his speaking, writing, and consulting, he helps IT professionals around the world understand, use, and make better decisions about enterprise software.

    David has been the keynote speaker for dozens of conferences and events in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Latin America. His popular seminars have been attended by tens of thousands of developers, architects, and decision makers in forty countries. He has also spoken at many universities, including the National University of Singapore, Moscow State University, and Sweden's Uppsala University.

    David's books have been published in ten languages and used regularly in courses at MIT, ETH Zurich, and other educational institutions. He is Series Editor for Addison-Wesley's award-winning Independent Technology Guides, and he's been a columnist for several publications. In his consulting practice, David has helped clients such as Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Microsoft, Stanford University, and Target Corporation adopt new technologies, market new products, train their sales staffs, and create business plans.

    David's comments have appeared in The New York Times,, and many other publications. Earlier in his career, he wrote software for supercomputers, chaired a U.S. national standardization working group, and played keyboards with the Peabody-award-winning Children's Radio Theater. David holds a B.S. in Economics and an M.S. in Computer Science, both from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.You can reach him at:

  • Chris Bowen's Blog

    Code Camp 8 Update



    We're one week from Code Camp 8 and things are looking great!  We've had a wonderful response from speakers and contributors, helping to make this (free) community event one of the best!

    When and Where

    • Saturday, September 29th:
      • 8:30 -- Registration
      • 9:00 - 6:00 -- Sessions
      • 7:00 (ish) - Late -- Geek Event
    • Sunday, September 30th:
      • 8:30 -- Registration
      • 9:00 - 4:00 -- Sessions

    Microsoft Offices, 201 Jones Road, 6th Floor, Waltham, MA

    Register at

    Schedule Coming Tuesday

    The detailed room & session schedule will be assembled on Tuesday, so keep an eye on this blog or on site for details.

    In the meantime, you can view the current list of sessions.

    Thank You to Our Speakers!

    We've had great speaker support from the community.  There are 26 speakers giving about 40 technical sessions.  Thank you to everyone for giving your time and effort to speak! 

    Here's the current speaker roster:

    • Andy Beaulieu (NY),  Leader – CNY .NET User Group
    • Chris Bowen
    • Dave Burke (VT)
    • Allan da Costa Pinto (CT)
    • Michael Cummings
    • Ben Day,  Leader – Beantown .NET User Group
    • David Edson (WA)
    • Bob Familiar
    • Bruce Ganek
    • Robert Hurlbut, Leader – Boston Arch. Study Group
    • Charles Hyman
    • Julie Lerman (VT), Leader - VT .NET User Group
    • Jesse Liberty, Noted Speaker and Author (of numerous developer titles)
    • Anthony Lombardo (NY)
    • Adam Machanic, Leader – NE SQL User Group
    • Todd Mancini
    • Michael de la Maza, Leader – C# Day
    • Mark Mullin
    • Tim Ng (WA), Sr. Dev. Lead, VB Team, Microsoft
    • Andy Novick, Leader - VB Professionals User Group
    • Fritz Onion (ME), Trainer, Speaker, and Author of "Essential ASP.NET 2.0"
    • Chris Pels (RI), Leader – Boston .NET User Group
    • Richard Hale Shaw, MVP and Noted Speaker
    • Steve Simon
    • Paul Swider
    • Max Weber

    Again, a huge THANK YOU in advance to everyone for volunteering their time and expertise to the community!

    Long-Distance Speaker Travel "Awards"

    Sincere thanks to everyone who is speaking.  I'd also like to recognize two people in particular who are making the trip to visit us all the way from the west coast:

    • David Edson - David is one of the top Visio developers in the U.S. and is giving a technical session on coding with Visio's object model to automate data visualization.  With David's experience, this session promises to be very interesting!
    • Timothy Ng - Tim is Senior Dev. Lead on the Visual Basic team with Microsoft and is running two intermediate/advanced sessions on LINQ and VB.  It's not often that we can hook a product team person to visit us in New England, so I hope you'll have a chance to see or speak with Tim.

      Saturday Evening Geek Event

      I just blogged the details of the traditional Saturday evening Geek Event.  We'll be gathering at the Waltham Westin hotel's lobby bar after Saturday's sessions end for some food, drink, and conversation. 

      Everyone is welcome for this informal gathering and I hope you can join us!

      Thanks to Our Contributors

      Helping make the Code Camp possible, we've had especially strong support from contributors this time around. 

      As you may know, Code Camps do not work with sponsors (i.e. putting names up on slides with booths and banners everywhere,) but rather "contributors", who simply give materials or funding to help these community events, with no expectations in return.

      The following companies are contributing to Code Camp 8:

      • ASP.NET Pro Magazine
      • Atalasoft
      • Code Magazine
      • Infragistics
      • Magenic
      • Microsoft
      • Telerik
      • Wiley/WROX

      Please join me in thanking them for their community support!

      Special Sunday Lunch Session

      Richard Hale Shaw is offering to run a lunchtime "workshop" session on Sunday for people interested in practical approaches to LINQ.  Richard will take requests in advance for queries you'd like to see translated into LINQ and will walk through them in this 1/2 hour workshop.  See the session description for details on how to submit your ideas.  (There will be a prize for the best query!)

      Looking forward to a great Code Camp this weekend!  See you there!



    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      The September Roadshow is Underway



      On the Road Again

      The first Roadshow stop is tomorrow, so Bob and I are revving up the engine, packing up the stuff, and heading out on the road.  There's still time to register for one of these stops:

      Free Pass and Book!

      Not that our amazing content and world-class senses of humor aren't enough, but we've arranged to have free passes to ReMix '07 Boston for all Roadshow attendees!  PLUS, just because we love to lug around heavy boxes, we're giving every attendee a copy of the book "Introducing LINQ"!

      Now even if I didn't work for Microsoft, I'd still think that's a pretty decent deal for free...

      See you on the road!



      Technorati tags:
    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Speaking on Enterprise Library at Beantown .NET UG on 10/4


      I'll be in Boston tomorrow night (10/4), giving a talk about the Patterns & Practices group and Enterprise Library for the Beantown .NET User Group.  If you're in the Boston area and are interested in learning about how Enterprise Library can help with your development efforts, drop by for a listen!

      The meeting runs from 6-8:00 PM.

      More details and directions are at

      See you there!


      Technorati tags: , , ,
    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Code Camp 8 - Summary and Thank You



      Fritz Onion working session magic[From the "Better Late than Never Department"]

      It's been a very busy couple of weeks after Code Camp, with ReMIX and working on the home stretch of "Essential WCF", but I didn't want to forget to post a summary for our fantastic New England Code Camp 8!

      The weekend before last saw over 40 sessions by 25 presenters, all volunteering their weekend time to an engaged audience of people who also volunteered their weekend time to attend!

      Judging by the surveys we received, this was one of our best Camps yet, with both the session ratings and overall event rating extremely high.   


      I wanted to point out Samantha Milowsky's great summary of the event!  Thanks for taking capturing the event in words and photos!

      More magazines than you can read!Thanks also to Dave Burke for his kind words in his Code Camp wrap-up

      Session Materials

      We'll be hounding the speakers to get links to their presentations up on TheDevCommunity site.  Some speakers already have their content available through their blogs:

      Log in to for links to the materials for each session (you need to be logged in to see the presentations.)

      Thanks to Our Speakers

      The saturday night geek event Please join me in thanking our speakers for volunteering their time and effort!  Without you, Code Camp would be... well, a lot of people just sitting around eating pizza.  :)

      • Andy Beaulieu
      • Chris Bowen
      • Dave Burke
      • Allan da Costa Pinto
      • Michael Cummings
      • Ben Day
      • David Edson
      • Bob Familiar
      • Bruce Ganek
      • Robert Hurlbut
      • Julie Lerman
      • Jesse Liberty
      • Anthony Lombardo
      • Mark Mullin amazes Adam Machanic
      • Todd Mancini
      • Michael de la Maza
      • Mark Mullin
      • Tim Ng
      • Andy Novick
      • Fritz Onion
      • Chris Pels
      • Richard Hale Shaw
      • Steve Simon
      • Paul Swider
      • Max Weber


      Giveaways aplenty A special thank you to our contributors for supporting this Code Camp!

      These companies contributed either funds for food or giveaways for attendees, with no expectations of the the usual sponsorship perks like logos in lights, banners on the walls, and expo hall receptions.  Please join us in thanking them for supporting the .NET community.

      Code Camp v.Next!

      What actually happened during the SCRUM session?If you thought this Code Camp was packed with information, keep in mind we have a the launch of a certain trio of products coming, so things are going to be very interesting for Code Camp 9 in the spring!

      Last, but absolutely not least, THANK YOU to every attendee who exchanged precious weekend time to come out and share, learn, and drive the buzz that makes the New England .NET community one of the best in the world!


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      VS2008, SQL 2008 and Windows Server 2008 Launch Date Announced


      Today (July 10th) at the Worldwide Partner Conference, Kevin Turner announced that Visual Studio 2008, Windows Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 will be launched on February 27th at an event in Los Angeles, followed by a series of launch events around the world.

      For details and press coverage see:


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Upcoming Northeast Developer Events (September Edition)


      Summer is at its end, so I'm resuming my periodic roundup of upcoming user group meetings and other events for developers in the northeast.

      Know of other events or user group meetings?  Please let me know!


      September 4, 6-9 PM
      Fairfield/Westchester .NET User Group - UConn, Stamford, CT
      "Building Custom Code Generation Tools for Visual Studio 2005" - Lenni Lobel

      September 11, 6-8 PM
      South CT .NET SIG - Shelton, CT
      "Workflow Foundation" - Jim Crone

      September 17, 9-4 PM
      Bob & Chris' MSDN Roadshow - Hartford, CT
      Dynamic Languages | Practical Silverlight | Visual Studio Tips | Leveraging Services

      October 2, 6-9 PM
      Fairfield/Westchester .NET User Group - UConn, Stamford, CT
      "AJAX" - Bill Zach


      September 4, 6:15 - 8:30 PM
      New England Visual Basic Professionals - Waltham, MA
      "Office Groove 2007" - William Aboujaoude

      September 4, 6-8 PM
      Western Mass .NET Users Group - Easthampton, MA
      Topic TBD

      September 6, 6-8 PM
      Beantown .NET User Group - Boston, MA
      "WCF: State of the Service?" - Richard Hale Shaw

      September 12, 5:30 - 8:30
      Boston .NET User Group - Waltham, MA
      Topic TBD

      September 13, 8:30 - 4 PM
      C# Day - Waltham, MA
      Registration Full! [Check back for October and November offerings]

      September 13, 6:30 PM
      New England SQL Server User Group - Waltham, MA
      "SQL Server 2008:  What's New?" - Aaron Bertrand

      September 20, 9-4 PM
      Bob & Chris' MSDN Roadshow - Waltham, MA
      Dynamic Languages | Practical Silverlight | Visual Studio Tips | Leveraging Services

      September 21, 5:30 - 7:30 PM
      Team System Public User Group - Waltham, MA
      Topic TBD

      September 25, 6:00 - 7:30 PM
      New England SharePoint User Group - Waltham, MA
      Topic TBD

      September 26, 6:00 PM
      Cape Cod .NET User Group - Bourne, MA
      Topic TBD

      CodeCampSeptember 29th & 30th
      Code Camp 8: Rise of the Silverlight Surfer - Waltham, MA
      Hundreds of attendees.  Two full days of sessions.  Community.  Networking.

      October 2, 6-8 PM
      Western Mass .NET Users Group - Easthampton, MA
      Topic TBD

      October 4, 6-8 PM
      Beantown .NET User Group - Boston, MA
      Topic TBD - Chris Bowen

      October 4, 6:15 - 8:30 PM
      New England Visual Basic Professionals - Waltham, MA
      "LINQ" - Shawn Wildermuth


      September 13, 6-8:30 PM
      Maine Bytes User Group - Portland, ME
      [Topic TBA]

      September 18, 9-4 PM
      Bob & Chris' MSDN Roadshow - Portland, ME
      Dynamic Languages | Practical Silverlight | Visual Studio Tips | Leveraging Services

      New Hampshire

      September 12, 7:00 PM
      New Hampshire SQL Users Group - Nashua, NH
      Topic TBD

      New York (Upstate)

      September 12, 9-4 PM
      Bob & Chris' MSDN Roadshow - Rochester, NY
      Dynamic Languages | Practical Silverlight | Visual Studio Tips | Leveraging Services

      September 26, 6:00 - 8:30 PM
      VDUNY - Visual Developers of Upstate NY - Rochester, NY
      "What's New in Visual Studio 2008?" - Chris Bowen

      September 5, 6:00 PM
      Central New York .NET Developer Group - East Syracuse, NY
      "Playing with Silverlight 1.1" - Andy Beaulieu

      September 11, 6:30 PM
      Tech Valley .NET Users Group - Latham, NY
      "SQLCLR:  Running .NET Code Inside SQL Server" - Alex Silverstein

      Rhode Island

      September 12, 6:00 - 9:00 PM
      Southern New England SQL Server User Group, Warwick, RI
      "SQL Server 2008 New Features" - Aaron Bertrand


      September 10, 9-4 PM
      Bob & Chris' MSDN Roadshow - Burlington, VT
      Dynamic Languages | Practical Silverlight | Visual Studio Tips | Leveraging Services

      September 17, 6:00 - 8:30
      Vermont .NET User Group - Burlington, VT
      "Dynamic SOA Service in WCF" - Mark Mullin

    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      My Turn for the 5 Things Tagging Meme


      Okay, I'm the last of Andy Beaulieu's group of 5 tagees to blog five things that people probably didn't know about me.  So, to curtail any further guilt (and to replace it with shame?), here we go:

      1. I'm a very big fan of craft beer.  I love checking out the latest offerings from Dogfish Head, Avery, AleSmith, Rogue, Stone, etc.  In fact, if you're in the Boston area, check out the Extreme Beer Fest.  I'll be there on 2/10 and sleeping on 2/11.
      2. My older daughter (age 7) and I are reading through the Harry Potter series together.  Of course, when you read in 15-20 minute chunks at bedtime, it takes a while.  Halfway through book 4...  Go Gryffindor!
      3. Unusual skill that I'm not particularly good at - glassblowing.  I have a collection of misshapen cups and random whatchamicallits to prove it.
      4. I started programming as a wee lad in 1979.  "101 Basic Games" was one of the first books that sped me on the way.  Ah, the fun of Boxing and hunting the Wumpus in full text-based glory.
      5. I can bend my left thumb back so it is parallel with my index finger - pointing the other way.  Good for entertaining audiences when my demos fail.  Used frequently.

      Well there you have it.  I'll try to find time later to come back and tag five other people who haven't been tagged yet, but I wanted to get this post up now to complete Andy's group.


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Controlling Page Flow with Workflow Foundation - Sample Available


      Matt Winkler gave a session this week at TechEd where he described how to use Windows Workflow Foundation (WF) to control the page flow of a client-facing application.  This has certainly been a popular request since the early days of ASP.NET (giving rise to such MVC frameworks as Maverick.NET.)  A preview of this technology was given at TechEd 2006, but didn't make it into the current release bits.

      PageFlow The good news is that the Page Flow sample is now available with full source code.  It includes a new PageFlow project template, a new Navigator workflow type, and new controls (InteractionActivity and InteractionGroupActivity) for Visual Studio.  This sample can be used with multiple UI technologies (e.g. ASP.NET, WPF, etc.)

      Read Matt's Post for full details and a sample use case.


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Microsoft in Second Life


      I've be a fan of Second Life for a while now (message me to exchange avatar IDs) and even have a relative who has worked in the SL world professionally, so it's great to see parts of Microsoft responding to the opportunity it presents. 

      There was recently a launch party in Second Life to unveil a second Microsoft island (and even a blimp!) dedicated to providing information, events, and of course interesting things such as puzzles to play with.  You can visit to sign up for Second Life or, if you already have SL, visit the island directly via secondlife://Microsoft/151/219/22.

      Here's the island overview video (via

      Microsoft is also participating in a Second Life job fair running through tomorrow (5/17).  From Microsoft's JobsBlog:

      "We're participating in a worldwide virtual career fair in Second Life from May 15th through 17th.  Second Life is a very cool, wildly popular virtual world, and we'll be meeting and interviewing candidates during the job fair on "TMP Island", so named because of the career fair hosts, TMP Worldwide."

      Other related articles:


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Code Camp 9 Summary and Thanks


      Code Camp 9 We had an amazing weekend in Waltham with Code Camp 9 - "I Came, I Saw, I Coded"

      Estimates are that we had over 300 people on Saturday and over 200 on Sunday!  We had approximately 60 sessions, each with great technical content and none with marketing fluff. 

      The evaluation forms are still to be reviewed, but the other feedback on the event, and in particular the presentations, received in the hallways and via email has been extremely positive, a credit to the entire community!

      Welcome to Code Camp 9!Session Materials

      Looking for Code Camp 9 materials?

      We've invited our speakers to update their session information with links to any presentations or demo materials they may have posted. 

      Keep an eye on the Code Camp site for links over the next week or two, and note that you must be logged in to see the links.

      Thanks to Our Speakers

      Richard Hale Shaw Packs the RoomCode Camp is nothing without the amazing volunteers who give their time and expertise for the benefit of the developer community.

      We had an unprecedented 34 speakers, giving about 60 sessions, some of whom traveled a great distance to be with us (Jason Haley wins the "Long-Commuting Camper" award, visiting from Seattle), and all of whom deserve great thanks:

      • Andy Novick
      • Le Chat RoomAndy Beaulieu
      • Boyan Kostadinov
      • Bryan Tuttle
      • Chris Bowen
      • Chris Love
      • Chris Pels
      • Dave Burke
      • Dennis McCarthy
      • Don Sorcinelli
      • Edwin Ames
      • Chris Love Impresses the AudienceGreg Howe
      • Hai Ning
      • Ian Dicker
      • Igor Moochnick
      • Jason Haley
      • John Baird
      • Joseph Hill
      • Kevin Goff
      • Lou Franco
      • Mark Blomsma
      • Miguel de Icaza and Igor Moochnick Coding on PaperMatthew Roche
      • Michael Cummings
      • Michael de la Maza
      • Michael Hennessy
      • Pat Tormey
      • Patrick Hynds
      • Peter Gomis
      • Richard Hale Shaw
      • Rik Bardrof
      • Robert Goodearl
      • A Birds of a Feather SessionRyan Thomas
      • Steve Andrews
      • Sunil Kadimdiwan

      To the several of you who were intending to speak, but had other events of life conspire to keep you from doing so, you have our sincere thanks as well.

      We hope to have all of you with us when we do this again in the fall for Code Camp 10!

      Saturday Night Socializing

      Gathering at the Waltham WestinA bunch of the speakers and attendees headed over to the Waltham Westin hotel on Saturday evening for the Code Camp tradition of unwinding and socializing between Camp days over some drinks at the lobby bar.

      Unwinding after a long day at Code Camp == Good Thing.

      Thanks to Our Contributors

      Code Camps rely on contributing companies to help provide venues, giveaways, and food.  These companies provide support for the benefit of the developer community, without promise of huge banners and fireworks touting their involvement. 

      Just -Some- of the SWAGPlease join us in thanking the contributors for Code Camp 9:

      We had many stacks of magazines, plenty of books, giveaways and swag, and food aplenty.

      And Finally...

      Thanks to YOU, the attendees, for investing your valuable weekend time to learn and share with fellow members of the development community!

      More Code Camps!

      Tech Valley Code Camp Looking for event more Camping goodness?  We have the Tech Valley Code Camp coming to Albany, NY on April 19th.  The Camp still has room for speakers and attendees, so consider helping grow this brand new Camp by participating. 

      And if that weren't enough, we have another Code Camp in the works for the Hartford, CT area!  Tentatively scheduled for June/July, details will be posted to this blog as they emerge!

      Again, thanks to everyone for a great Code Camp 9!

      -Chris Bowen and Chris Pels

    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Three Events in Upstate New York This Week (5/13 - 5/15)


      I'm getting ready to head out for a multi-event tour of upstate New York this week: 



      Tuesday, May 13th - 6:30 - 9:00
      Tech Valley .NET User Group - Albany, NY
      I'll be presenting on "Next-Generation UX Development with Silverlight and WPF"



      Wednesday, May 14th - 6:00 - 8:30
      Western NY .NET User Group - Buffalo, NY
      I'll be presenting on "LINQ and .NET 3.5 Language Enhancements"



      Thursday, May 15th (all day event)
      Heroes Happen Here Launch Event - Rochester, NY
      My session is on "Web Development with Visual Studio 2008".  I'll be joined by my Northeast Roadshow buddies, Bob Familiar and Jim O'Neil, who are also delivering sessions.


      That's plenty of driving, but it should be a lot of fun.  Hope those of you in the area can make an event or two!


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Code Camp 9 Update


      Code Camp 9 Things are moving along well for Code Camp 9, coming on April 5th and 6th at the Microsoft offices in Waltham, MA.

      With a little over three weeks to go, we're already over 30 sessions and nearing 250 registrations.  Keep them coming!

      Register (Code Camp is free!) today at

      If you're interested in speaking, it's as simple as registering a session and we'll give you a room/session.  Check the bottom of this post for details on how to submit a session.

      New CC9 Logo!

      First, and most obvious in this post, is that we have a new Code Camp 9 logo!  Many thanks to Bryan Phillips for volunteering to create it.  (Just a bit better than my previous logo, eh?) 

      Thanks Bryan!!

      "Introductions" Track

      New at this Code Camp is the dedication of one room solely to introductory sessions on foundational topics.  Are you or your company just getting into technology X?  The Introductions Track is your chance to come up to speed on a variety of developer topics.

      We still have speaker slots to fill for the introductions track, so if you'd like to help get people up to speed on existing technologies, please volunteer your time!

      See you in April!


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Code Camp 9 - The Schedule!


      code camp wkng 08 cropped Code Camp 9 is coming next weekend (April 5th & 6th), and I'm honestly amazed by the response.  (What is Code Camp 9?

      We currently have 62 technology sessions over two days and, currently with 415 registrants, we're likely to hit our limit of 500 people!

      It's a free event, and with just 85 slots left for registrants, make sure you register now at:


      I had to cram session titles in to get them to fit below, but you can see the full session list here.

      Open Space Discussions

      We've decided to turn the kitchen area into an Open Space concept.  We'll put up a grid and let people toss ideas for informal Birds-of-a-feather sessions throughout Saturday and Sunday. 

      So bring your ideas/stories/challenges, pull up a few chairs, and get chatting with your fellow Campers.

      See You There!

      Thanks to our contributors, who are sending in heaps of goodies for giveaways and swag.  Thanks to our great community of speakers for volunteering to share their expertise.  And of course, thanks to all of you for attending Code Camp 9!

      See you next weekend!



      Saturday, April 5th

      MPR A MPR B MPR C EBC Rhode Island Providence
      8:30 Registration (Coffee/Tea in Kitchen)
      8:45 Camp Welcome Session  
      9:00 Break
      9:10 Index Optimization and Performance Tuning Cross-
      .NET: Mono and Moonlight
      Visual Basic 2008 - New Language Features leading up to LINQ Extending Power-
      Practical MDX: Using MDX with MS OLAP/BI Tools
      10:25 Break
      10:35 What a Dev should know about IIS 7 ASP.Net Performance and Optimization SQL Server Reporting Services 2008

      Birds-of-a-Feather Discussion - Visual Studio 2008 from the Trenches

      BizTalk Primer Real World httpModules and httpHandlers
      11:50 Lunch (Food in Kitchen & MPR A + B)
      12:35 Writing Better Code with Visual Studio 2008 Developer Edition "Shall We Play a Game?" - An Intro to Game Dev with XNA Reporting Services 2008: Authoring compelling reports No Pain Database Access with SubSonic Intro to: extend your project/ products with custom Workflows and Rules engine
      1:50 Break
      2:00 Silverlight 2 Data Apps Quick Start Reflector and Friends: An overview of Lutz Roeder's  .Net Reflector and its add-ins Wpf Means Business II Mobile App Dev. with .Net Compact Framework, SQLCE and PPC's Patterns of Splendor: Advanced CodeSmith Windows and Dev Auto-
      mation with NAnt
      3:15 Break
      3:25 How Do I Use ASP.NET AJAX? Extending  .Net Reflector: writing your own addins Object Relational Mapping, an Intro to NHibernate

      Jumping Into the ETL Deep End with SQL Server Integ-
      ration Services

      Intro to: extend your projects/ products with new scripting engine -Power-
      4:40 Break
      4:50 Big Data: Managing Terabytes with SQL Server Intro to ASP.NET Visual Studio 2008 Tips and Treats Extending Your Apps using Dynamic Languages SQL Server Integration Services Deployment Best Practices Front-End Web Performance Techniques for ASP.NET Developers
      6:05 End of Day 1


      Sunday, April 6th

      MPR A MPR B MPR C EBC Rhode Island Providence
      8:30 Registration/Welcome (Coffee/Tea in Kitchen)
      9:00 Best Practices in ASP.NET 2.0/3.5: Defend Yourself From Worst Practices Intro to Design: The Power and Glory of the User Exper-
      mation with MSBuild 3.5 and Team Build 2008
      Black-belt T-SQL for devs with SQL Server 2005 and SQL Server 2008 Build a State Machine Workflow Adv. Tech-
      niques for Everyday Dev
      10:15 Break
      10:30 Functional ReFactoring: Adding Clarity and Grace to Your Code Lever-
      aging Compact Frame-
      work 3.5 Dev Tools
      Test Driven Dev w/ Test Driven .net and NUnit AJAX- The AJAX Control Toolkit, Plus Taking AJAX to The Next Level NHiber-
      nate and Poly-
      Building Apps with Logic
      11:45 Lunch (Food in Kitchen & MPR A + B)
      12:30 WinForms and Smart Client Dev SQL Server Integration Services Dev Best Practices Extend Power-
      Shell "To Infinity... and Beyond!"
      What's Auth got to do, got to do with it?  
      1:45 Break
      1:55 LINQ isn't just for Breakfast, anymore- Applying LINQ and Strategies for Migrating to It The absolute begin-
      ner's crash course on WCF
      Extending SharePoint 2007 Handling UAC in .NET Apps WCF for Windows Mobile Apps Data Cubes 101 with SQL Server 2005
      3:10 Break
      3:20 Crash Course in LINQ and Visual Studio 2008 Language enhance-
      Workflows are not only for for business SharePoint 2007 Web Part Dev Starter A Platform for S+S Apps  
      4:35 End of Camp - Thanks for Attending!

    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Second Life's Second C# Day This Saturday (2/16)


      sl_color_horiz_152x63 Michael de la Maza is again assuming avatar form and appearing in Second Life to run a virtual world C# Day event on Saturday, February 16th!  C# Day is a fantastic, non lecture-based way to learn C# programming with no previous programming experience required. 

      Details are at

      Check out the work that my colleague Zain Naboulsi and others have been doing to deck out Visual Studio Island for the C# Day event:


      Great stuff!  I encourage you to walk/swm/fly in for a look.  Enjoy!


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Roundup of 11 Recent Microsoft Technology Releases


      There have been quite a few developer and technology releases in the past couple of weeks, so in case you’ve missed any, I’ve collected pointers to 11 of them in this post:

      Plus a couple of new guides for good measure:


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      The Northeast Roadshow Rides to Channel 9


      RoadshowJim, Bob and I are very excited to announce that we have a brand new home for northeastern US developers on Microsoft’s developer site Channel 9!

      What will you find there?

      • Pictures of our smiling faces (no extra charge)
      • Posts from our blogs
      • Screencasts of past sessions
      • Links to presentations and code
      • Links to other resources

      Check it out at

      Northeast Home on Channel 9 

      We’re in the process of recording screencasts from our recent Northeast MSDN Roadshow events (Spring ‘09, Winter ‘08, Fall ‘08) and will have them listed for you there at the bottom of the page.

      We also have a Northeast Code Gallery, where you can download the presentations and, if you’re daring, code samples from our events.  Links to screencasts are here as well:


      Whether your a regular attendee or not, we hope these sites give you the content you need, whenever you need it.

      Channel9LogoImmense and sincere thanks to our teammate Brian Johnson for the great work he’s done to get us going (his help is why you’ll see his name as publisher of the screencasts we’ve posted). Thanks also go to Jim for tuning the sites to make sure the water was fine before we all jumped in.

      Please let me know if you have any questions about either site, and enjoy!


    • Chris Bowen's Blog

      Building Community at the Northeast User Group Leader Summit


      Reception in the 10/11 Floor Atrium On Saturday, May 2nd, O’Reilly Media and Microsoft partnered to host the first Northeast User Group Leader Summit (NEUGLS) at the Microsoft NERD campus in Cambridge, MA.

      The event brought together about 100 community leaders, representing over 70 user groups (listed here) in the northeast, for a day to network and discuss community.  A wide variety of tech areas were represented (.NET, PHP, Linux, Hacking, Ruby, and others), and leaders came from as far away as northern Vermont, Maine, New York City, and Philadelphia.

      The Concept

      Tech community groups face many of the same challenges – “Where can we meet?” “Who will speak?” “Are there legal concerns?” “How do we pay for this?”  With so many shared concerns, it seemed there was a chance to strengthen the northeast community by getting together to talk about community (yes, very “meta”.)

      Hallway Conversations and Book Giveaway BrowsingBy leaving behind the specific tools and technologies our groups represented, everyone found there was a great deal in common to discuss. 

      The diversity of groups was key, helping leaders forge new connections and exchange many new ideas. 

      David Christian (leader of the NYC Python group) captured the essence in his blog post:

      I'd like to see these same connections form around the country. This type of event benefits particularly from having many local meetings as opposed to one national one, due to the benefits of simply getting tech leaders in the area to meet and exchange information in ways they might not do if when siloed into their particular communities.

      The Event

      The Session Grid The goals for the day were to share ideas and to make connections.  The content was facilitated with an “unconference” approach, where the schedule had no fixed sessions and attendees created and scheduled sessions as conceived throughout the day.  Ideas were posted off the schedule/grid, discussed, and popular ideas were moved to open slots.

      All told, there were 24 sessions ranging from converting members to leaders, to finding venues, to dealing with finances. 

      Like many, I was sad not to have a clone who could attend every session, but “scribes” volunteered for each session to record notes to the event Wiki so people could benefit from the ideas in sessions they couldn’t attend (up to seven sessions were run concurrently).  You can view the full list of sessions and notes.

      Jeff Potter Cools Things DownThere were three primarily social parts of the schedule.  After some initial networking, everyone introduced themselves (name, group, and three descriptive words) in the opening session then adjourned for lunch and to create the schedule.

      The afternoon break was a relaxed chance to break into smaller groups to make meeting others easier.  The break featured technologist and “food hacker” Jeff Potter hosting an extreme ice cream making social, where teams made different flavors using liquid nitrogen to quickly freeze the mixtures.  The event closed with an evening social with drinks and appetizers to relax, share a few more ideas, and make some final connections.

      Discussing How to Find/Grow Speakers

      Buzz and Feedback

      The hashtag for the event was #NEUGLS, and it was good to see the general buzz on Twitter.

      Thanks to these attendees for their summary posts:


      Sincere thanks to the team who made this event possible:

      • O’ReillyMarsee Henon, Laurel Ruma, Laurel Ackerman
      • MicrosoftChris Bowen, Gus Weber, Jim O’Neil
      • CommunityJeff Potter, John Ross, Ron Thibeau, Jon Pierce, Shimon Rura 

      First, thanks to our fantastic event partner O’Reilly Media for their monumental efforts in making this event a success.  They did a huge amount of work to help bring this together, and I can’t wait to work with them again on another event!

      Shimon Rura and Darius Kazemi on Running Large GroupsSpecial thanks to Jeff Potter for hosting the incredibly fun (and tasty) afternoon ice cream social break!

      Thanks to Jon Pierce and Shimon Rura for sharing ideas on the event and for a great job reaching out to community leaders, and to John Ross and Ron Thibeau (of for helping with planning and registration.

      Thanks to O’Reilly’s own Rachel James for taking and sharing a wonderful set of pictures from the event.

      Thanks to O'Reilly, Pragmatic Programmers, Sams, Que, Peachpit, Addison Wesley, Make, and APress for donating the many books used as giveaways.

      And finally, thanks to everyone who took precious weekend time to attend and participate in the event!

      Next Time?

      Based on feedback from attendees, it’s clear there’s a need for this kind of event and an interest in holding another one of these next year, if not sooner. 

      Reception on the 10th Floor at the Northeast User Group Leader SummitIt would be great to hear your feedback.  When should this be done again?  Would you change anything about the logistics?  What would you like to see next time?

      For more on the event, including participating groups and notes from each of the sessions, see the NEGULS wiki.

      If you live elsewhere and are interested in hosting something like this in your area, feel free to contact me and I’ll share details on how the team organized this event.


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