I started Day 21 a little misty eyed - figuratively speaking. After all, MEDC China was the last MEDC event for 2005. At this stage, I'd been working on the events for nearly 9 months so they're very much a part of life and it seemed a little strange to look at coming weeks which didn't have anything MEDC related to do. I resolved to put my performance of the night before behind me and bring my 'A' game into play for the last event.
As I think I mentioned before, aside from my demos the MEDC China keynote was deliver in Chinese to enable the largest portion of the audience to understand. The implication being that English was very much a second language to most of the people in the audience and hence extra pressure on me to deliver clearly. That's an extra challenge for me and of course, makes you think very hard about exactly what you're saying and how. My recommendation for next year's MEDC Keynote team will be to present their demos to a non-English speaking audience. A row of blank stares is one way to make you be clear, concise and to the point.
To aid audience comprehension, I had an assistant for my demos (Thanks Giao Hua!). Giao Hua's job was to introduce my demo and to interject at appropriate points to explain to the audience what was going on. Of course, he did this in Chinese.
My three demos were bookended by two local demos delivered in Chinese:
Demo 1 - Demonstrating how Windows Mobile is the only platform able to completely meet the GoTone specification for phones in China.
Demo 2 - Microsoft Research China. AMAZING demno showing an app that can control your Media Center PC from your phone over Bluetooth as well as control Powerpoint. The Powerpoint control feature was especially cool because it allowed you to preview slides on your phone BEFORE you updated the display on the connected laptop.
I like to think I managed to find a little something somewhere to make the demos entertaining and improve on my performance the previous evening.
The rest of the event was pretty cool. It was awesome seeing things like the agenda in Chinese. Since I knew I was heading home I collected a bunch of MEDC/Developer things that were in CHinese : a backpack, a developing for Windows Mobile book in Chinese! and the tags from the water bottles. The water bottle tags each had a Windows Mobile 5.0 feature on them. Apparently there were 168 unique tags across the 6000 water bottles. I collected perhaps 15 of them!
I had the opportunity to speak to a number of local developers. It seems there's quite a degree of sophistication around the Windows Mobile platform in China. There were also a tonne of local/international sponsors.
Later in the evening, the event content owner, Leon, took us out for a Chinese meal. Beijing is famous for its duck so we went to a restaurant pupporting to serve good duck and it really delivered. I even got a demonstration of how to make a proper duck filled pancake. The celebratory dinner marked the end of MEDC. All that remained for me was to fly home!
Thanks to Wei Qing, Leon, Su Chen and team for putting on a great event and making me feel so welcome.