Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Cleveland .NET SIG 1/8/2008- Silverlight 101

Tonight I attended the Cleveland .NET SIG hosted by Bennett Adelson with Jeff Blankenburg as the presenter. The topic was Silverlight and was basically a test run of the same presentations that Jeff will be giving at CodeMash later this week. In fact, this is part of the reason I'm not attending CodeMash, I got the content I wanted most anyway.

So on with the review.

Jeff was pretty well prepared, he had his slides put together professionally and his demos accomplished their goals of showing various features of SilverLight and of building upon each other nicely. He did have some trouble with some of the demos the first hour but while he was frustrated / embarrassed by it I don't think came off bad. Really all of the issues came down to the fact that this was his first real run of the content with an audience so he forgot a couple things that I think he knew, just was a tad flustered. I don't want it to sound like it went badly because it didn't, a couple little hiccups but overall a good pair of presentations.

The only complaint I would have, and this isn't a real complaint, come in the second presentation. In this hour he concentrated more on cool implementations like Tafiti and Popfly than on "how to". Now that may have been the goal the whole time but well, I wanted more meat :). And also, it did feel like, and Jeff actually said at one time, that he was staying away from the demos after the pain he went through during the first hour.

Still, overall, I think it was a good meeting and I'm glad I attended.
Atmosphere: The pizza was good and greasy, the room was full and Mr. Annoying was there as usual. I'm not going to name him because he's probably a nice guy but the person to whom I'm referring has been at every event I've attended for a while and ALWAYS asks loud, grating, almost confrontational questions of the presenter. I'm sure many readers know exactly of whom I speak (well, type). Really, I think Jeff did a good job of handling him, even got him to shut up for a while, but not until he had completely derailed his train of thought. Really I think that's probably what knocked Jeff out of his rhythm in the first hour.
Oh, and my losing streak continues. Still no door prize. For those keeping score, a few years back (like 2001ish) I won a few things from MSDN events and such. Since then: NADA. Zip. Zilch. A month ago I was at an event with about 12 attendees and 5 giveaways, still nothing. I'm hoping that I'll win a 'metric ton' of goodies on Thursday (hint, hint).


David said...

Mr. Annoying

Was it Kenny Tarmac? I hear he just landed.

Sarah said...

Ah, yes... Mr. Annoying. I groan when I notice he's there since we know what we can expect with him.
I wouldn't be surprised if Mr. Annoying threw Jeff off - I could see him doing that to any presenter.

I had seen Tafiti and Popfly when Jeff showed them off as part of the December holiday meeting, so I was a little curious to see if he'd mention them at Tuesday's meeting. I was hoping for a little more in the way of Silverlight examples, but I was excited about both presentations as a whole.

As for your losing streak - I guess you weren't at the December gathering? There were enough .NET and SQL people there that someone walked away with at least one thing. Jeff was up for that meeting and brought lots of goodies with him - including a nice sized stack of the 90-day trial Visual Studio 2008 CDs, redeemable for a full (free) copy of Visual Studio 2008 Professional Edition. Other things included books, mugs, a couple other Microsoft products, a table tennis thing, and Viva PiƱata. Hopefully your streak will be broken in 2008!