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  • Microsoft Press

    Ed Wilson: Registration for the 2010 Scripting Games open

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    The registration for the 2010 Scripting Games, to be held via the TechNet Script Center opens today. Once again, we are partnering with the Windows PowerShell MVP’s and are using their PoshCode script site to upload and to showcase the Scripting Games entries. So how do the 2010 Scripting Games work? Well, I am not going to repeat the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that were published a few weeks ago on the Hey Scripting Guy! Blog. But I will say that you should review the FAQ, and you should definitely review the 2010 Scripting Games Study Guide . Even if you choose not to participate in the 2010 Scripting Games, you should bookmark the 2010 Scripting Games Study Guide—why you may ask? Well, for one thing, I spent nearly two days rounding up study resources for the 2010 Scripting Games ...
  • Microsoft Press

    Survey: We’re diving into your feedback from the just-finished quarter

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    You’ve probably noticed that we mention our book survey more and more on our blog. It’s an anonymous survey via which you can give feedback about any of our titles. It’s short, direct, and designed to let you spell out in as much detail as you like what you like and don’t like about a title. (The survey is here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/booksurvey . All you need to get started is the book’s ISBN or title.) Well, this is a short post to tell you that we have gathered all the information you gave us in the survey between January 1, 2010, and March 31, 2010, and we’re scrubbing the data and diving into your feedback. (By scrubbing the data, I mean deleting entries not related to Microsoft Press books. Also, we can’t use survey responses that are incomplete. So, if someone gets through...
  • Microsoft Press

    I. M. Wright: “I’m deeply committed”

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    “It’s mid-year career discussion time at Microsoft®. I could rant about the HR tools we use, but that’s like complaining about prostate exams—too inflated a target. Instead, what gushes out at me at this time of year are BOGUS commitments. You’ve heard of SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-based, and Time-specific). BOGUS commitments are Bloated, Outdated, Generic, Unrepresentative, and Self-centered. What really kills me are BOGUS commitments posing as SMART ones. They sound specific and measurable. The results seem achievable in the specific time period provided. And yet, these so-called SMART commitments are totally BOGUS. As a manager, BOGUS commitments are particularly gut wrenching to evaluate—“Yes, you are ‘On Track’ for 11 of your 12 commitments. Unfortunately, your...
  • Microsoft Press

    New book: Windows 7: The Best of the Official Magazine

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    We’re happy to announce that Windows 7: The Best of the Official Magazine is now available. Today we offer an excerpt from the book. First, here’s a quick a description of it: Explore the practical, fun, and creative things you can do right now with Windows 7—with expert guidance from the editors of the only officially endorsed magazine for Windows 7. This guide comes packed with smart-and-simple tips-and vibrantly illustrated how-to's-on everything from navigating the Windows interface to taking advantage of new operating system features to fun projects for home, school, and work. Topics include boosting your productivity with Windows Live and Windows Internet Explorer 8, thwarting hackers, organizing your photo and music collections, making movies, streaming to an...
  • Microsoft Press

    Full TOC for “Windows 7: The Best of the Official Magazine”

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    Here’s the Table of Contents for the new book we highlighted in our previous post:  
  • Microsoft Press

    Share your favorite formulas, functions, tips, and tricks in Excel or Access

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    Last week I wrote a post about how I love books and recently used our e-reference library to find the CONCATENATE function in Excel. This week, though, I want to confess that I’ve learned most of my favorite tips and tricks in Excel and Access from friends and fellow co-workers. It’s amazing how few of the features and functions we all use in these programs. Whenever I hear about someone using a function or formula I’ve never used, I can’t wait to learn it. I’ll share a couple of my newly learned tricks with you here. I invite you to write comments to this post and tell us how you use a particular function. If you can, show us an example. CLEAN This function made me finally appreciate VLOOKUP. Almost everyone I know who works in spreadsheets uses VLOOKUP frequently. I’ve never liked it, though...
  • Microsoft Press

    New book: MCITP Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-685): Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Support Technician Training Kit

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    Great news! The MCITP Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-685): Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Support Technician Training Kit , by Tony Northrup and J.C. Makin, is in print! This book is exactly what you need to help prepare for certification exam 70-685. Tony and J.C. give you plenty of lessons and exercises and the CD contains several practice tests too. You'll find all the standard Training Kit benefits: comprehensive coverage of all 70-685 exam objectives, 200+ practice test and lesson review questions, real-world scenarios, case study examples, troubleshooting labs, fully searchable eBook of the book’s contents, and a 15 percent exam-discount voucher from Microsoft. Here's an excerpt from the book's introduction: Introduction This training kit is designed for IT support personnel...
  • Microsoft Press

    Take a look at the Windows Phone 7 Series “Metro” book

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    This beautiful book describing and illustrating the thinking behind the “Metro” UI was handed out at MIX10 . You can see the entire book here . And here’s a profile of Albert Shum , “one of the key thinkers behind the new Windows Phone 7 Series design.”
  • Microsoft Press

    Carl Chatfield: Top 10 Problems, #1: Forget that the schedule is not the project

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    Carl here. ProjHugger is for Microsoft Office Project newbies, enthusiasts, and zealots. I publish new posts every Monday morning, but you can add comments any time. This week’s ProjHugger post continues the “Top 10 problems new (and not so new) Project users have, and what you can do to ease the pain” series, which started like this: #10 , #9 , #8 , #7 , #6 , #5 , #4 , #3 , and #2 . Problem #1: Forget that the schedule is not the project You're a project manager who's invested thousands of hours building and maintaining a complex project plan. Sometimes the smartest thing to do is to just throw away the plan. On a Journey of a Thousand Steps, the First Step is the Most Dangerous It's a peculiar truth that at the time you're building a plan for an upcoming project, you can say with 100% certainty...
  • Microsoft Press

    How one Luddite learned to appreciate digital text

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    I love print books. I like the way they feel and I like how I can picture pages in my head after I’ve read them. I like sticking post-it notes on pages that might be important to me again. I already stare at a screen all day reading email. Why would I want to read books on a screen – no matter if the screen is my monitor or an electronic reader? Yet, over the last few months, I’ve found ways to use PDFs and online libraries that make me rethink digital books – especially technical books like the ones we publish at Microsoft Press. I’m lucky enough to have a bookcase full of our books in my office. Sometimes I’ll take one home to learn something new, like SharePoint. However, if I have a specific question and don’t know which book can solve it best, I rely on searching through our entire...
  • Microsoft Press

    Carl Chatfield: Top 10 Problems, #3: Put far too much detail in a schedule

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    Carl here. ProjHugger is for Microsoft Office Project newbies, enthusiasts, and zealots. I publish new posts every Monday morning, but you can add comments any time. This week’s ProjHugger post continues the “Top 10 problems new (and not so new) Project users have, and what you can do to ease the pain” series, which started like this: #10 , #9 , #8 , #7 , #6 , #5 , and #4 . Problem #3: Put far too much detail in a schedule Using Project effectively is sometimes an exercise in restraint. Just because you can plan out work to a fantastic level of detail does not mean you should. Knowing when enough detail is just right is a fine art of project management. The Devil is (in) the Details This is a problem many of us have experienced first-hand, and some of us have likely caused (I for one am guilty...
  • Microsoft Press

    Calling all readers of developer Training Kits—UPDATE

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    A few weeks ago, Kimberly Kim sent out the call for feedback about our series of Training Kits covering the .NET Framework exams. We are very grateful that so many of you have responded, but we want to hear more. In the next couple weeks, we will begin the serious planning for the next round of Training Kits covering the .NET Framework exams. We want to make sure that your voice is included. The best way to put your ideas in front of planners and editors at Microsoft Press is through our online survey: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/booksurvey . We really, truly read every response. Specifically, we are hoping you can provide feedback on the following titles. (The survey will ask you to provide the ISBN of the title you are reviewing.)  MCTS Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-502): Microsoft...
  • Microsoft Press

    Upcoming training on Windows internals

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    Good morning, everyone, from NYC (after O’Reilly’s TOC conference). This just in from David Solomon, one of the authors of Windows Internals, Fifth Edition . UPCOMING CLASSES Our 2010 class schedule is posted. We have three deliveries of our 5-day Windows OS internals class planned: London: April 12-16 New York City: May 3-7 San Francisco: November 8-12 If you like Sysinternals, the book Windows Internals , or want to learn more about Windows OS internals, then you'll want to attend one of these classes. Aimed at developers and IT Professionals, you'll peer into the internals of the Windows operating system kernel (both 32-bit and 64-bit) and related core mechanisms such as memory management, thread scheduling, interrupt processing, time accounting, and crash dump analysis. Learn how to to...
  • Microsoft Press

    Carl Chatfield: Top 10 Problems, #4: Track by percent complete

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    Carl here. ProjHugger is for Microsoft Office Project newbies, enthusiasts, and zealots. I publish new posts every Monday morning, but you can add comments any time. This week’s ProjHugger post continues the “Top 10 problems new (and not so new) Project users have, and what you can do to ease the pain” series, which started like this: #10 , #9 , #8 , #7 , #6 , and #5 . Problem #4: Track by percent complete Project managers who track progress by percent complete often mistake elapsed duration with progress, such that when they're 75% out of time they think they're 75% done. Sadly, this is often not the case. Planning is dandy but... This isn't an exclusive list, but in general I see two types of Project users, which I'll call "planners" and "trackers." Planners use Project...
  • Microsoft Press

    Ed Wilson: Preparing for the 2010 Scripting Games

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    I have been really busy trying to get ready for the 2010 Scripting Games at the TechNet Script Center . We will have 40 guest commentators who will each write their own solution to one of the 20 scripting events. There are 20 script events because the 2010 Scripting Games consists of 10 beginner and 10 advanced events. The reason for the 40 commentators is because we will have solutions in both VBScript and in Windows PowerShell. In all likelihood, this will be the last year that we will have VBScript in the Scripting Games. The reason is not because I do not like VBScript – after all I wrote three books for Microsoft Press on VBScript, but that IT Pros are rapidly migrating to Windows PowerShell because it is easier and more powerful than VBScript. The 40 guest commentators will include many...
  • Microsoft Press

    TOC and excerpts for Richter’s CLR via C#, Third Edition

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    We know that full TOCs help you determine whether an author has covered subjects to the depth you need. The full TOC for Jeffrey Richter’s just published CLR via C#, Third Edition   (ISBN: 9780735627048)   can be downloaded here . Here’s a collection of our posts sharing excerpts from and other information about Jeffrey’s book .
  • Microsoft Press

    Watch the Day 1 MIX10 keynote, featuring Guthrie and Belfiore

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    You can hear the MIX10 Day 1 Keynote, featuring Scott Guthrie and Joe Belfiore, here: http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/events/mix/videoGallery.aspx . And from the MIX site: Once the keynotes end just keep watching as Channel 9 Live will begin streaming automatically until 5:30 PM, with interviews with Scott Guthrie, Joe Belfiore, Bill Buxton, Dean Hachamovich, Charlie Kindel, Albert Shum, Doug Purdy, Erik Meijer and many more . Follow or send questions to @ch9live on Twitter . You can view the full schedule here . The MIX10 breakout sessions will be recorded and available online within 24 hours of the session. http://live.visitmix.com .
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