One week on from TechEd Australia

This time last week, TechEd Australia was kicking off in fine form.  It was a whirlwind few days, some great learning & information – as well as great networking & discussion – and a few drinks (and then a few more). 

I’m thinking back on how my TechEd week went – and thought I should blog some of it, before I forget !

Tuesday :

Flight from Melbourne, with a few OBS’ers and other TechEd’ers – Rob Farley, and a few other Twitterers.  After dropping off our bags, I had to race up to the venue to meet up with my “EyeForce” leader.  I had been selected to take some video clips in and around the TechEd conference, and picked up my little MinoHD camera.  I took a bunch of clips over the next few days – you can see my vid’s (& others) on the FaceBook site.

I completed an exam on the Tuesday afternoon – passing the 70-542 Technology Specialist : Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 – Application Development exam.  This completed my set of SharePoint 2007 exams – just in time to move onto the 2010 exams !

Everyone gathered in the main arena for the KeyNote – which starred the energetic Micheal Kordahi and Andrew Coates – showing some entertainment devices via XBox, Tablet, phone and Surface computer – as well as special guest August de los Reyes – speaking about Natural User Interfaces, among other fascinating studies.

And we then had a live demo of the XBox Kinect, with a willing participant from the crowd.  And lots of Windows Mobile 7 – which looks great – don’t go out and get an iPhone-4 just yet !

The opening party was next – which received some media attention – nothing more to say on that – but there were some fun times on the expo floor – with XBox game, and vendor swag & freebies – and beer, wine & soft drinks.

During the evening, the AvePoint Interactive Theatre had a number of ‘ask-the-experts’ panel session, which I was lucky enough to be a part of the developer focussed session (THRTU04 – SharePoint Q&A Panel – Developer / Infrastructure).   Along with Elaine van Bergen, Jeremy Thake, Brain Farnhill and Paul Turner, we had some discussion and question-and-answers from the crowd. 

We adjourned to the nearby Jupiters Casino bar for a few drinks, but my ‘wookie flu’ was still troubling me – so home to bed – I even left an unfinished beer behind – gasp !

Wednesday :

The conference was to begin aproper today – I was pretty keen to see some of the great content in the Office & SharePoint tracks.  This year, I looked to the list of ‘names’ to see who I wanted to see (people I knew !) – and then check the topics/timetable.  

My schedule builder was almost full, after adding some of the great SharePoint presenters on offer (a who’s-who of the top speakers in Australia) – Jeremy Thake, Brian Farnhill, Mark Rhodes, Elaine van Bergen, Alex Burton, Roger Carran, Will Cornwill, Ben Walters, Alistair Speirs and many others – phew !

Also – I was keen to catch up with some of the OBS crew from my local office that I don’t get to see very often (!) – as well as some interstate’rs – and the Nintex crew – and talk to Adam Clark & other user group folk in the “UG lounge” (with the awesome blue couches !)

Before the day even began, I took off for a 6am walk on the beach (!) and then the 7am User Group leaders breakfast – good to meet & chat with some folk from other disciplines (other than SharePoint) – and in other cities around Australia.

First session of the day was OFS100 – Office 2010 KeyNote – some great new features of the 2010 set of Office client and web platform.  Best feature I saw was taking a screen shot into OneNote, and then searching the text – OCR’ing on the fly – just incredible.

Next up was some final prep and then my session with Josh Tan (Nintex) – THR001 – Automating Business Processes and Ensuring its Continuity in SharePoint 2010.  We talked through some concepts of Workflow & BPM, and then showed a demo – in which we created a ‘User Defined Action’ for Nintex Workflow 2010, as an example of a custom add-on/extension, which can then be used in the Workflow designer for drag-and-drop. 

And then used AvePoint deployment manager to migrate these components from DEV-TEST-PROD – I’ll detail more about the session in a separate post – and include the slide deck – the interactive theatre decks are not available on the Session Catalog (TechEd site).

Lots of chatting with people in the user group lounge over lunch – and then to check out OFS400 – Upgrading SharePoint 2007 to SharePoint Server 2010, with some lessons learned, and ‘approaches’ – don’t just dive in and do it – good to know what to expect – plan, test, revise, etc.

When I got to my next session (DEV330 – A day in the life of the SharePoint developer), the room was chockers – with ~15 people standing in the doorway, on tip-toe to see the slides & presenter.  I couldn’t really hear the speaker, so I headed back to the expo hall + user group lounge. 

[ The SharePoint sessions were VERY popular – and needed to be held in a larger room really ! ]

I jumped in/out of a few sessions after that, and chatted to some more vendors and user group folk (great to chat with some very good industry pals) – and I raced off home to drop the bag & get changed quickly.

Last session of the day was OFS301 – ECM for the Masses : How Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 Delivers on the Promise.  They covered Managed Metadata, Documents Sets, and Unique Identifiers – was great to see/hear another take on it, and cement my understanding.

The conference day was over, and a few of the OBS crew were lucky enough to receive an invitation to a vendor cocktail party – before we headed over to the SharePint drinks night.

I’d been able to organise some drinks money – thanks to OBS and Aptimize – and an XBox 360 door prize (from AvePoint) – so I/we were hoping for a good turn-out.   I think we had about 80-100 people in attendance – in a fairly small area – so it felt like a raging party !   

We quickly got through the bar tab (!) and then drew the XBox prize at 9.30 pm – which was won by my buddy JEREMY THAKE !   LOL !

Next up, a bunch of us were whisked away to another smaller gathering on the 70th floor of the Q1 building in Surfers Paradise.  An amazing view – only 4 floors from the top – would have been incredible to see during the day.   A few more drinks – and then a taxi home about 1.30am.  

Day 1 done.  *phew*

Thursday + Friday :  Coming soon.

3 thoughts on “One week on from TechEd Australia

  1. Jeremy Thake August 31, 2010 / 12:59 pm

    Great catching up mate! what an awesome week! Wish all us were closer geography..but suspect that may be dangerous for our healths and wallets! Good times!


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