Paul Ballard's WebLog

.NET All Day.... .NET All Night. The semi-coherent ramblings of a sleep deprived mind.

  • Happy to NOT Be an MVP!!!

    Wait, it's not what you think.  This isn't some "sour grapes" post where I bitch and complain about not getting awarded the MVP this year.  I'm not tossing Vista out the window for penguin software nor am I going to start abbreviating Microsoft with M$.  It was actually my choice.

  • Great quote from Steve Ballmer on Apple’s “Cult Following”

    I attended a TechNet event today called “Technologies to Change Your Business:  How Customers Are Implementing Tomorrow’s Strategies Today”.  It was primarily geared around Microsoft’s virtualization stories and SQL Server 2008, but I attended to see if Steve Ballmer was going to drop any news about Microsoft’s Cloud Services.  After his keynote, there was a question and answer session where a question was asked that led to the presenter talking about Apple’s “cult like following” for its products such as iPhone.  This was Steve Ballmer’s reply:

  • MVP Summit 2008 - Wish I Could Be There

    Well, the MVP Summit started today and I'm starting to see both blogs and pictures come out.  Sadly, this is the first one since becoming an MVP that I've missed.  The distance and expenses of getting to Redmond from London were just too much for me to overcome, to say nothing of the piles of work to do here at BT.  But even though I'll miss the festivities I'm sure my MVP brethren and sistren (is that a word?) will have a great time and hopefully know that I'll miss seeing them this year.

  • Facts vs Web 2.0

    I was recently wallowing in my usual firehose of RSS feeds when I came across a link from Heather Leigh's blog about Mozilla's attempt to poke at Internet Explorer by quoting statistics that say IE users are more likely to get, have, or be living with cancer.  The firestorm of disgust and outrage that they have since been dealt is certainly justified.  But what really bothers me isn't that the ads were in incredibly poor taste, and they were, but that all of the so called "stats" were in fact complete works of fiction.

  • New Year's Eve in London - Amazing

    Last night was an excellent example of the pleasant surprises you find when moving to a new place.  I usually watch the ball drop in Times Square on Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve and often thought how great it would be to be in the crowd cheering as countdown reached 0 and the new year started.  That desire has been replaced though with what I saw last night.  Now I want to be a part of the 700,000 member crowd gathered along the Thames counting down to 0 followed by an awe inspiring near silence as we listen for the tolling of midnight by an illuminated Big Ben in the distance.  This was followed by the biggest, most impressive fireworks display I've ever seen, even if it was just on TV.  They launched fireworks from several floating barges, at least two moving speedboats, and directly from the London Eye. 

  • You Know You're NOT In Texas When...

    My good friend and native Texan Noah Coad recently wrote a post entitled "You Know Your In Texas When" highlighting the sights and mostly tastes of Texas that stood out during his visit with family over Christmas (Noah works for Microsoft and now lives in Redmond).  Being a former Texan who transplanted himself even farther away than the Pacific Northwest, I couldn't help but make the opposite comparisons in my new home (which for those of you who didn't notice the picture above is London, UK). 

  • Updated WCF RSS Toolkit for Visual Studio 2008 and .NET 3.5

    Now that I'm happily living in the exciting, fast paced world of Greater London you'd think my weekends would be spent enjoying the active nightlife or soaking in the culture and history all around me.  But you'd be wrong.  I'm a nerd and so I spent my weekend in nerd bliss, a.k.a. getting reacquainted with my old friend WCF.  Sorry ladies, I'm taken.

  • Visual Studio 2008 is Out and Startup Is FAST

    Okay, so I have to admit that in the two days I've had Visual Studio 2008 installed on my desktop system I haven't had a chance to look at everything.  However, when I was at Tech-Ed Barcelona I saw several demos where the speaker started Visual Studio 2008 and it seemed to just spring to life.  My experiences with Visual Studio 2005 was far from "springy" including seeing the "Preparing Visual Studio for first use" diaog about every 5th time I started the application.  In every demo, I had to make sure VS2005 was already running to avoid long delays and audience boredom.

  • Tech-Ed (Developer) Barcelona Bound

    An observant reader looking at my blog directly and not in their favorite feed reader may have noticed that several months ago the image at the top changed from the skyline of Chicago to that of London.  That's because in July my wife and I threw all expectations of decent customer service to the wind and relocated to scenic London England.