Editor's Note: The Following a post by Silverlight MVP Brian Noyes

It was a great week at the DevConnections Las Vegas fall conference and I thought it would be good to write a short post about the conference and why I think more developers should target this conference whenever they get a chance to attend one. This is my eighth year speaking at DevConnections, and it remains one of my favorite conferences both to speak at and attend. 

DevConnections has a number of advantages over a lot of other conferences out there. For one thing, it is not just one conference, it is really a meta-conference combined with WinConnections for the IT crowd containing eight or so separate sub-conferences including ones focused on both developer and IT topics.  That allows you to get a number of tracks per conference across multiple disciplines that you can pick and choose from. If you want Silverlight content, you go to the Silverlight conference tracks. If you want ASP.NET, there is one for that. For core .NET topics, there is the Visual Studio conference. And so on.

The speakers at the conference are also the very best from throughout the US and the rest of the world as well. Just take a look at the speakers roster and the number of well respected names you will see will surprise you. I also like the fact that the content is very focused on what developers need today to get their jobs done better. You get some brief exposure to the future technologies and the paths of migration to them, but the core content is more actionable and based on shipping technologies. For the more future looking stuff, they include things like the evening panel discussions I participated in last night on WinRT and Cloud adoption to discuss and learn about where we are headed. But when you attend the main conference breakout sessions it is all very code focused with lots of demos and sample code that the attendees can walk away with and use in their own projects as soon as they get back to their jobs. 

Last week was an intense week for me presenting four session and participating in a discussion panel. I presented sessions on WCF service technologies, Async frameworks and patterns, Silverlight validation, and desktop client extensibility. I had lots of good questions and interaction in the sessions with the attendees. That is one of parts I love the most – the interaction with the crowd – hearing what they find challenging, trying to come up with answers and solutions on the fly. 

So if you haven’t had a chance to make it to a DevConnections conference, you need to try harder! Come for the content, come for the answers, come for the choices in content, or… well it is in Vegas.

Author's Bio:

Brian Noyes is Chief Architect of IDesign, a Microsoft Regional Director, and Silverlight MVP. He is a frequent top rated speaker at major conferences worldwide including Microsoft TechEd, DevConnections, DevTeach, and others. His most recent book is Developers Guide to Microsoft Prism 4, and is the author of Developing Applications with Windows Workflow Foundation, Smart Client Deployment with ClickOnce, and Data Binding with Windows Forms 2.0. Brian got started programming as a hobby while flying F-14 Tomcats in the U.S. Navy, later turning his love for code into his current career.