go ahead, mac my day

a Macintosh girl in a Microsoft world

October, 2007

  • go ahead, mac my day

    RDC for Mac 2.0 public beta (rev 2) now available


    You asked, we answered. We have updated our public beta of RDC for Mac 2.0. The single biggest change that some of y'all will notice is that we have improved support for having connections to multiple machines open at once. Hope you like it; submit feedback via Connect if you have any suggestions or if you run into any bugs.

    Go forth and download!

  • go ahead, mac my day

    the giving campaign


    Every October, Microsoft sponsors a Giving Campaign. Employees are encouraged to donate to charities, either with money or by volunteering their time. For many charities, Microsoft matches the donation made by the employee. If you volunteer your time, then the Microsoft match is a cash match, $17 per hour. We've just completed the annual Giving Campaign, and more than 80% of my fellow MacBU employees donated to their favourite charities during the campaign.

    Personally, I divide my charitible giving between two groups: KQED public radio and RAINN. I donate to them because I think that they are each providing an important public service, and I want to support their work. My donation is through an automatic payroll deduction. For me, this deduction is just as important as the deductions for my retirement savings.

  • go ahead, mac my day

    Office 2008 wins Best of Show at MacLife Expo 2007


    Several members of the Office:Mac team were at Mac Live Expo last week. At that show, Office 2008 received a Macworld UK Best of Show award.

    See you at Macworld Expo in January!

  • go ahead, mac my day

    OOPSLA 2008: 19-23 October, Nashville, Tennessee, USA


    Looking over my blog referrals, I noticed that I've gotten a lot of hits lately for the search term 'oopsla 2008'. So let's give some real information.

    OOPSLA 2008 will be held in Nashville, Tennessee, USA, from 19 through 23 October 2008. The OOPSLA 2008 website will go live later; I'll post here when it's available. For those of you who are already beginning to think about your OOPSLA submissions, you can plan for the first deadline (research papers, tutorial proposals, etc) being in March, notifications from the first deadline being in May, the second deadline (posters, doctoral symposium, etc) being in July, and the final batch of notifications being in August.

    If you want more details about OOPSLA 2008, please do leave a comment. I'm on the organising committee as Development Chair, so hopefully I'll know the answers. :)

  • go ahead, mac my day

    OOPSLA 2007 Student Research Competition winners


    After its remarkable success in previous years, OOPSLA has again hosted an ACM Student Research Competition. The competition, sponsored by Microsoft Research, offers a unique forum for students to present their original research at top ACM conferences before a panel of judges and attendees.

    We received 20 submissions to the OOPSLA 2007 Student Research Competition. Of those 20 submissions, 7 were accepted to the competition. Those students received a stipend for their travel expenses related to attending OOPSLA. The judges evaluated their work during the poster session. The judges selected 5 submissions to advance to the second round of the competition, wherein the students gave 10-minute presentations about their work. After a vigourous debate, the judges selected the winning submissions.

    The winners are as follows:

    • In third place, for the work titled "Activating Refactorings Faster", Emerson Murphy-Hill.
    • In second place, for the work titled "Assuring the Execution Architecture of Object-Oriented Programs using Ownership Domain Annotations", Marwan Abi-Antoun.
    • In first place, for the work titled "Code Genie: A Tool for Test-Driven Source Code Search", Otavio Lemos, Sushil Bajracharya, and Joel Ossher.

    All three of these submissions now advance to the ACM Student Research Competition Grand Finals. A different panel of judges will evaluate the winners of all of the Student Research Competitions from the various ACM conferences. Three Grand Finals winners will be selected. These winners, along with their advisors, will be invited to the annual ACM Awards Banquet, where they will receive formal recognition for their work. The winning submissions from the OOPSLA Student Research Competition have historically fared very well in the Grand Finals. Given the high quality of work that has been presented here by these students, I anticipate similar results at this year's Grand Finals.

    OOPSLA 2008 will host a Student Research Competition. I would like to invite all students to begin to think now about the work that they can do to submit to the competition next year.

  • go ahead, mac my day

    great day at OOPSLA


    Today has been a great day at OOPSLA. I'm so glad that I came this year.

    The day started off with Fred Brooks talking about collaboration in design. I am an unabashed fan of Fred Brooks, so there was no chance of me missing his talk. He has to be one of the most amazing minds in software engineering. He mentioned a couple of papers that I haven't read yet, so now I have to make sure that I get them. It's also time to get a new copy of The Mythical Man-Month to see what changes he made to it for the 25th anniversary edition. You can tell you've got a great session when you've got people like Dave Ungar, Ralph Johnson, and Rebecca Wirfs-Brock queuing up at the microphones to ask questions of the speaker.

    During the break, I did a stint in the Microsoft booth. Several people came over specifically to talk to me about what it's like to work at Microsoft and in MacBU, others just came over to say that they like my blog. It's always good to be able to connect with people, and my time in the Microsoft booth has given me ample opportunity for that.

    Then it was over to the Onward! films to see what the filmmakers had come up with. One film made the point that we don't really know a lot about how software evolves. This, coming so soon after Fred Brooks talking about the design of software, has my mind racing. How does software evolve, and how do we manage it better?

    Lunch was the OOPSLA 2008 committee lunch. Gail Harris, next year's general chair, has decided that it's time to refactor the committee. To that end, she has created a new Development Chair. The chair is being held by two people for OOPSLA 2008, since refactoring the committee is going to be quite a lot of work. I'm one of the two co-chairs. I've got some ideas for how to proceed and how to make this a success; you'll probably see me blogging more about this in the future.

    After lunch, I ran across the hallway to conduct the second round of the ACM Student Research Competition. Five submissions were selected by the judges for this second round, where they gave ten-minute presentations about their work. The presentations were phenomenal. After the students left, the judges selected the winners, who will be announced on Thursday during the OOPSLA awards ceremony. The decision was hard, but we walked out of the room with a clear understanding of the submissions that we selected and why. I'm immensely proud of the work that all of the accepted students did for the SRC. The breadth of the topics that their research covers is one of the reasons that I love OOPSLA so very much.

    Then it was time for my women of OOPSLA birds-of-a-feather meeting. I've had the general feeling that the number of women at OOPSLA has been declining. This year, we gathered demographic information on the registration form, and were pleased to discover that ~10% of the attendees are female. I wanted to gather some people together to talk about this and what we can do about it. The people who showed up were articulate and passionate. We came up with some great ideas that we can implement at OOPSLA 2008, as well as some ideas to take home with us as we think about how to get more women into computer science.

    And now it's time for the special event of the conference. I'm hungry and in need of red wine, so I'll sign off now. Bonsoir!

  • go ahead, mac my day

    women of OOPSLA birds of a feather meeting tonight!


    Tonight, I'm leading a birds-of-a-feather meeting for the women of OOPSLA. It will be held tonight, beginning at 5pm, in room 512F. We'll talk about our experiences at OOPSLA and as technical women. How do we get more women interested in computer science? How can we get more women to attend OOPSLA?

    See you there!

  • go ahead, mac my day

    best non-Apple laptop?


    When I attend conferences like OOPSLA, I'm a laptop watcher. It's interesting to see what hardware everyone is carrying. This year, I'm noticing the Windows-based laptops. There are a lot of nice-looking designs out there. I keep on noticing, and being jealous of, the ultra-light laptops that I'm seeing. In the midst of this, I see an article over on Cult of Mac saying that Apple's design holding pattern needs to end.

    What do you think are the best non-Apple laptops out there? Who do you think is innovating in their hardware design?

  • go ahead, mac my day

    Mac user group @ OOPSLA - Tuesday, 5pm-7pm


    One of my favourite parts about OOPSLA are the Birds of a Feather (BOF) meetings. These are informal meetings set up by anyone at OOPSLA. Take over a room for a night and talk about whatever you want to.

    I've set up a BOF for Mac users at OOPSLA. It will be on Tuesday from 5-7pm in room 515AB. Come over and we'll chat about the number of Mac users at OOPSLA and what we as Mac users would like to see at OOPSLA in the future. Research papers about Objective-C? Practitioner reports about Xcode?

  • go ahead, mac my day

    Twitter @ OOPSLA


    For those of you who are here with me at OOPSLA, or who wish you were here with me at OOPSLA, you can follow OOPSLA on Twitter. You can view the tweets from those that OOPSLA is following (which is anyone who is following it) here. For those of you who are following OOPSLA, you can send a message by starting your tweet with "@oopsla2007". At OOPSLA, starting on Monday, we'll have a display showing all of the @oopsla2007 replies.

    For those of you who are curious what I'm up to at OOPSLA, you can follow me on twitter too.

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