By this point in the conference, everyone has got the routine down for what they’re doing either manning a booth or wandering around the show floor. Some of the vendors that misestimated their swag budget have started running out of free gifts to give away. The goal for those in the booths is to completely run out of items as the last person leaves so that they don’t have to turn anyone away and they don’t have to take anything home. The goal for those wandering the floors is to collect enough free t-shirts to avoid doing laundry next year but not to collect so much that the airline makes them buy another ticket.
There were more great chalk talks throughout the day. We’ve basically been running sessions all day in both theaters, with 30 minute breaks in between. One of the best attended talks that I spotted was Shy Cohen’s one on service-oriented design patterns. People were packed into the theater and out into the booth area until you reached the point where you couldn’t hear Shy speaking from any further back.
Another great talk was a joint talk on interoperability given by Kirill Gavrylyuk of Microsoft and Gerry Beuchelt of Sun Microsystems. Kirill has been
giving a lot of these talks recently, including at JavaOne a few weeks ago.
Besides the chalk talks, demo kiosks, and discussion area, we also have a set of hands-on labs for people to work on. The hands-on lab is a self-directed activity that take people through a series of activities for getting started with the NetFX products. Our hands-on lab area is a large triangular array of computer stations for people to work at, with the other half of the triangle filled in by the Architecture track.
Normally the room is packed, but I managed to wander over there when it was competing with the most popular session of the day, and every other day as well, lunch. There is an absolutely mammoth lunch area for the 12,000 attendees and other personnel wandering around Tech Ed. This shot doesn’t even cover a quarter of the area. Even still, they’re relying on people wandering in and out over 90 minutes in order to fit everyone through.