Tech Ed 2007, even on this last day of the event is still buzzing. The focus today shifts towards the Microsoft dedicated pavilion where various chalk talks, and presentations are capturing most of the attendees attention. The main pavilion floor is now closed so in between sessions the Microsoft section is pulling 100% of foot traffic.
Some of the key announcements at Tech Ed include SQL Server 2008. Many sessions were dedicated to this product and time lines for SQL Server 2008 look to have this release landing summer next year. If you were an attendee, or you've ordered a copy of the session DVD's, I agree with Bob Beauchemin assessments of the best sessions which I was able to attend:
DAT201 - The Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server: Overview
DAT202 - The Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server: Beyond Relational
DAT303 - The Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server: Data Warehousing Enhancements
DAT204 - The Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server: Manageability Overview
DAT17-TLC - Spatial Support in Microsoft SQL Server
DAT06-TLC - New T-SQL System Types in the Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server
DAT18-TLC - Overview of New T-SQL Programmability Features in the Next Release of Microsoft SQL Server
Over at the Microsoft 'Blue Section', I caught an excellent demo at entitled Project PopFly. This is probably one of the most impressive uses I have see of Microsoft's Flash alternative, Silverlight . It demonstrated an excellent use of one of Microsoft's technologies that I am sure we will hear more about over the coming months: Astoria. It is hard to do the demo justice, however the ease at which PopFly allows you to build mash-up applications was astounding. Tightly coupling Data Services exposed by Astoria, with any mash-able application such as Flickr, Amazon etc was painless, but most importantly required zero code to put together.
Over-all, the push to a web participation will see more and more applications exposing Data Services in this manner, particularly as we move away from the notion of mash-ups for building web 2.0 applications towards adoption of this methodology for mission critical enterprise applications. There is one underlying message to all of this: the degree of data exchanged between these applications and the databases that back this functionality will grow to proportions that will demand even greater attention to the software components charged with getting data to and from your application - this thesis means that the importance of best of class data connectivity continues to grow.
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