We are less than 2 weeks away from the single largest activity for us this year - the launch of Visual Studio 2005, SQL Server 2005 and Biztalk Server 2006. (www.microsoft.ca/launch2005) The team is heads down preparing to make the cross-Canada tour the best Developer and IT Pro event in Microsoft Canada history.
As part of the launch we decided early on to make blogging a major part of our communication with the community and the attendees. Not only did we feel that hearing directly from the presenters and other members of the team would provide everyone with even more information, but we felt it would be a great way to maintain an open and active dialogue with the community. So far our RSS feed has been accessed 30,000 times! (http://blogs.msdn.com/canadian_launch_tour_2005/rss.aspx)
From the blogs we have heard several questions regarding the distribution of software at the events. We know that the Developer and IT Pro communities are eager to get access to the final versions of the products and getting the software into your hands is a priority for us. The Launch Team is pleased to confirm that Special Edition copies of Visual Studio 2005 and SQL Server 2005 will be made available to everyone who attends the launch events. This is full functional "non-evaluation" software.
This means that you will be able to start developing and implementing solutions right away!
These Special Edition copies will be in addition to all of the other materials (like the presentations, code samples, etc) that each attendee will receive. Everyone who attends will also be able to mingle with some of Microsoft Canada's technical experts and will be eligible to win some awesome prizes.
Hopefully this clarifies any confusion around the software. We are looking forward to seeing you on the Canadian tour!!