Like many people, I love watching videos on the internet. Are you a consultant? Perhaps you can relate to this hilarious video on the vendor/client relationship. I am also a huge Harry Potter fan, and this “A Very Potter Musical” (created by students at the University of Michigan) is another shining example of the joy the internet brings me.
But, videos on the internet can do more than entertain…they also inform. One of the most useful resources that I use for learning new technology is “How Do I?” videos. These are short, 5-10 minute videos that demonstrate how to perform one specific task with a technology, such as “How do I deploy a Windows Azure application?” or “How do I animate paths in Silverlight?” Because they are so short and focused, it’s easy to watch them; I get so busy that I sometimes have trouble carving out an uninterrupted hour to watch a full-length talk, but I can squeeze in 10 minutes on a focused task that will help me do my job. Technologies covered include ASP.NET, AJAX, the Azure Services Platform, BizTalk Server, Data Platform Development, Devices, Internet Explorer, Office, Security, Silverlight, SQL Server, VB, C#, Visual Studio, VSTS, Visual Studio Tools for Office (VSTO), Windows Forms, and WPF. Check them out here.
Microsoft also has a whole website devoted to videos called Channel 9. The creation of Channel 9 is actually a pretty cool story. The inside scoop: a Microsoft employee was afraid of flying in airplanes. He was able to get over his fear partially because on United Airlines’ on-board entertainment system, conversations between the flight crew and air traffic control are broadcast on channel nine. Having this visibility into what the pilot was doing made a world of difference. And he thought, why can’t we do that for Microsoft? Thus Channel 9 was born, to give people a glimpse into the people of Microsoft with interviews and such, to convey technical knowledge, and to provide a channel to have a conversation between Microsoft and developers. Check it out here.