I knew it was going to be a good day. The drive in to downtown from my home office in nearby Burbank was smooth, and quick by L.A. standards. My friendly navigator (affectionately known as "Maggie") directed me right to the parking garage without a hitch, and there was virtually no one in front of me at the registration stand.

If you were there - I didn't see you. However, I did observe a throng of technical professionals as they moved from classroom to classroom, booth to booth, and kiosk to kiosk. I must admit that there doesn't seem to be quite as many attendees this year as there were a couple of years ago in Orlando, but I can say without a doubt that I feel the same full energy and passion from folks as they discover, research and demo a plethora of products and technologies from Microsoft and an abundance of partners and providers.

I spent most of my day yesterday slowly walking the Expo floor - twice. Like anyone, I lingered at booths and stations of key interest and meandered past those of little interest or for which I have limited technical knowledge. I don't know why, but I always feel a bit embarrassed about not being able to hold up my side of a conversation about a technology that might as well be quantum physics. But it's not like I was being assaulted by street vendors trying to hawk a knock-off. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE that I came in contact with (or meandered past) greeted me with a welcoming smile and invited me with words or gestures to check out their cool and sometimes ground-breaking offerings. Some personal favorites on the day include demos from TechSmith, KnowledgeLake, and ComponentOne. And it was sooooooo cool to sit down and play with Microsoft Surface. The potential in this technology is vast and exciting.

So what's the buzz this year? SharePoint, SharePoint, SharePoint! Mix in healthy doses of Win7, WinServer, and Server Virtualization, and you have the basic fixings’ for TechEd Pie!

I'm going for another recipe on Thursday. I'll let you know what I find.

-Steve Holland

 

This is one of the longest lines at the show. What are these attendees so excited about? 

Would you believe... Starbucks?

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