Microsoft Strategy Summit 2010


Yesterday I had the opportunity to be at this year Microsoft’s Summit held in Köln at Palladium Center.

As Microsoft Student Partner, I attended this event with another interest: helping my colleagues to stay in touch with the event through Social tools like Twitter or Facebook. Due to the limitations in WiFi connection, I wasn’t able to upload pictures at that time. But I was able to send tweets on #MS2010_Koln. You can view them on my twitter account or on the Student Partners’ Portal where I implemented a nice JQuery plugin to retrieve them.

The pictures can be seen here:

The event was very nice organized. When I arrived a nice breakfast helped me to regain power lost by traveling from Bonn and a coffee to make me sharp and fast in twittering. In the first session I wasn’t able to tweet too much because I used my old Symbian UIQ phone for which I didn't found a nice twittering application. But in the break I discovered that I can access Palladium’s wireless network and the fun began.

The only thing that prevented me to fully understand the presentations was the fact that almost everything was presented in German. My German skills aren’t so good unfortunately, but I managed to understand the main ideas.

As I mentioned, the first session was an introductory one. Said Zahedani and Kai Göttmann introduced us the highlights of the day, the sessions that will be presented.

Introduction

Next, starting from 09:30, Nick Sohnemann transported us into a future in which the computers become ubiquitous and integrated in every part of our life: in the mirror, in contact lenses. The motto was “Computers are invisible.Information surrounds us like a digital fog.” and seems that we are getting closer each day to it. As an example, I don’t look in dictionaries for German words, but rather searches them on Bing.

Ubiquitous computing in the mirror

Starting with 10:00 am, Andreas Schauer and Kai Göttmann presented us the changes and challenges of moving the sales’ style from license selling to service selling, since Cloud is a service-based architecture. So we can imply that sales map on development style which in its turn map on the tools style.

Moving into the Cloud

Then, a nice break to refill our energy and get to know the sponsors at their booths. I found some presentations very interesting, as the companies present there had a very large of business types, from consulting to telecommunications.

Starting on 11:15, Finn Boysen and Sebastian Weber presented us the Windows Azure Operating system, a major leap forward in Microsoft’s OS area. We were presented both Windows, SQL and AppFabric from Azure family, each one being a foundation for high availability, scalability, reliability and also allowing privacy on public domain. We were presented several examples of successful implementations, like SnipClip GMBH and Docuware. But the most important part for us, developers is that we can activate a free account on Azure and do tests and deploy applications, hence better estimate and understand the benefit of moving our applications to Cloud.

Microsoft Platform Ready

At 13.45 we had a very dynamic and fun presentation : Kinect device for multimedia console, Xbox 360. Sven Zuschlag and Clemens Lutsch presented us the advantages of contactless and wireless control. Basically, the Kinect device is a smart device composed from cameras, microphones and other devices which allows one or more persons to interact with games and applications. It can be used for movement recognition, person recognition, even for authentication as different persons have different postures, heights! The presentation included also a demo for a sports game in which the players were interacting with the game not by using remotes or gamepads, but their own bodies. As they said, it is recommended for people in 1-99 years range.

Kinect demo

Next presentation was the one that I felt closer – Windows Phone 7 and it was held by Frank Fischer and Dr. Frank Prengel. It included the main motivation of the product – serve the user, no matter if he is in the office or at home, surrounded by the family. On of the most interesting demos was the one in which, with the phone shut down (not locked or in standby!) he was able to take a photo in 3 seconds. As he said, when you want to have a funny pictures of your kids doing something, you really need to do this fast, without 3-5 touches. Otherwise “the subjects might be found on another continent” remarked him, speaking of young and dynamic children.

Windows Phone 7 Demo

Starting with 16:00, Steffen Weh and Christian Binder presented the testing and integration as parts of Quality Assurance in production chain of a software company. They underlined the advantages brought by Visual Studio 2010 to both quality software and user experience.

Quality Assurance

The most important keynote belong to Steve Ballmer, CEO Microsoft. He presented the way that Microsoft foresees the applications moving to cloud, its importance in both energy and money saving. He also underlined the importance of private data and explained it into the context of the three possible configurations: public cloud, private cloud and owned cloud.

Steve Ballmer

This was a very nice event. If you have the possibility, I strongly advise you to attend to it!

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