That’s right.  I and a few friends will be at the Tech-Ed 2005 Conference in Orlando, Florida.  From June 5-10 IT professionals from all over the world will converge for a week of stuff-your-brain-to-the-max seminars. Since this is my first time at TechEd, I’m very excited.

Why are we going? We want to get the message across that internationalization is essential in software development. Lower development costs, test costs, and customer support costs are only three of many benefits to internationalize.

Why put the effort into internationalization you ask? The global PC market and landscape is changing fast. Here are a few facts which make designing world-ready software beneficial:

  • By 2010, emerging PC markets like China, Russia and India will add 566 million new PCs. (Source: Forrester Research)
  • By 2040, the economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China will surpass those of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United States, and United Kingdom. (Projections by Goldman Sachs)
  • The two fastest growing Internet markets are China and India.
  • Over the next five years, European eCommerce sales will grow at a 33% Cumulative Average Growth Rate (CAGR), and China is expected to explode. This explains why Amazon.com's international sales increased 53% year over year in 2004, while its US sales grew just 6.5%. (Source: Forrester Research)
  • 37 million Americans do not speak English at home (Source: US Department of Health)

There are many areas to consider when it comes to designing world-ready software. At Tech-Ed, my colleagues and I hope to give you some of the tools you need to move forward.  Michael Kaplan, Achim Ruopp, Michele Leroux Bustamante, and more globalization experts will be there prepared to answer your questions. This year’s TechEd features the Global Development & Deployment Virtual Track which will cover new international features in Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005. See http://www.microsoft.com/globaldev/gdc/techEd2005gdd.mspx for more details and be sure to attend these sessions.

I look forward to seeing you all in Orlando.  I will be at Dr.International’s Clinic located in the Community Cabana across the hallway from the Developer Tools’ track cabana. The clinic is where my colleagues and I will be located throughout the 5 days and where all attendees should come to get answers to questions about international issues. So be sure to stop by and send your fellow TechEd attendees to visit too. I will have some SWAG ready and I’ll give you a special prize to those of you who know the individuals that make up Dr. International.  :)