TechEd Europe 2006 - Day 1 - Keynote

Here I am at TechEd Europe 2006 in Barcelona. I’ve got a couple of internationalization sessions (one today and one tomorrow). This morning was the opening keynote with Simon Brown (Vice President of Developer And Platform Evangelism), Eric Rudder (Senior Vice President Of Strategy), Eric Lee (Senior Product Manager in the Developer Division) and Anders Hejlsberg (Technical Fellow). I’ll mention a few of the details that I found interesting but don’t take this as a complete coverage of the keynote because it isn’t.

The session opened with a somewhat patronizing and humourless cartoon of a French developer and an English developer teaching security 101 to an audience of developers in what I suspect was hoped to be a funny and amusing way. Still, there’s always TechEd Europe 2007. Simon Brown provided a few TechEd stats: registrations from over 50 countries, 4000 developers at TechEd for developers this week and a further 4500 for IT Forum next week (personally I think the split between the two conferences is a really smart idea and I hope that the US takes Europe’s lead). He also announced Imagine Cup 2007 (, a competition for students all over the world to demonstrate technology, with the final being in Korea in 2007.

Simon Brown also introduced Arfa, an 11 year old girl from Pakistan. Arfa has made the news a lot over the last 2 years primarily because she passed her Microsoft Certified Professional exam in C# at the age of 9 (or 10 depending on your source). Think about it. Have you passed your MCP exam ? She has and she did it in a country that suffers from wide-spread illiteracy. Even better, she passed her ASP.NET exam at the age of 11. Really quite something. Well done.

Eric Rudder provided a few details about releases. The 2007 Office system was released to manufacture yesterday at 6:00am Pacific time. MSDN subscribers should receive it before the end of the month. Vista RTM will also be available to MSDN Subscribers "quite shortly". ASP.NET AJAX Beta 2 was also released last night (it includes localization and globalization support amongst other new features). You can reach downloads for all of these products at You also might like to be aware that Microsoft Learning are making their clinics and e-books free until 15th January 2006 (see

Opening Keynote

Developer Cartoon

Anders Hejlsberg

Eric Lee demonstrated a Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) application for a fictitious company called Fabrikam. In particular the demo showed an animated manikin that did a catwalk-style series of movements to show off clothing from Fabrikam. It went a lot further than most WPF animation demos as it showed a fully animated human with joints that bent correctly as the figure rotated in a relatively sophisticated way.

Finally Anders Heljsberg (ex-Delphi hero) demoed LINQ and as usual thoroughly wowed the audience with just how fabulously clever and useful this technology is.