The ReMix event was nice, well, not really comparable to Las Vegas, of course, but it was nice to see the demos again. For me, in fact, the real opportunity was rather to connect with other people interested in these technologies, and in this aspect it was really nice. I've been wanting to meet Ronnie Saurenmann (the guy behind the Zurich Airport XBAP and the "Outlook-like" WPF hands-on lab) for quite some time, I hope for the beginning of a nice collaboration. Of course the icing on the cake was to be able to meet ScottGu "in real" as opposed to the email contact we've been having so far. I didn't want to talk about it before because I didn't want to jinx it, but I had the pleasure of spending approximately 45 minutes with Scott and talk about our project and the future developments of WPF, XBAPs, Silverlight. This has een the subject of many a discussion I had these last months, and it's really nice to get confirmation by Scott himself that we're actually on the right track. It also confirmed what I already knew, that Scott is a really nice guy (additionally to being an amazing software specialist), and that he invests a lot of precious time to make sure that we (customers and community) are satisfied with the products he supervises.
After the ReMix event and after our talk, Scott presented the future of ASP.NET and Orcas in front of a large audience from the .NET Managed User Group of Switzerland. The talk was great, as usual, and we saw a lot of on-the-fly coding, which was very impressive. A big emphasis was put on LINQ, which really sounds very interesting. I almost wish I had a project with DB interactions going on, maybe I'll have to invent something in that direction to experiment with the technology. It was especially impressive to see how you can "translate" tables to objects by using a schema, including relationships using keys, then using these objects to write LINQ queries in an OO way, and then even modifying and saving the changes to the DB, all without writing one line of SQL code. The ability to debug all this and watch the produced SQL query (hover on the query's result and click to display the query itself and its result in tabular form) makes it easier to understand the LINQ syntax. Of course the ability to query against all kind of object stores is too good to be true (and yet it is...): Query against any kind of collection, of XML files, of DB or of web services!
A new control being delivered with ASP.NET was also shown: ListView. This panel allows defining templates for the container and for the items, and databinding to a LINQ data source for example. The data binding can be done in source code, or by using a new DataSource: LinqDataSource.
I'll need some time to digest all the information received today, I guess, but what I really enjoyed the most was all the great people met. It's a pleasure to be part of this community!
PS: It's my first post using LiveWriter and I think I am already hooked. Now I need to figure a way to blog into here and to then import the blogs in my RealSimpleBlog!!