Discussing Cricket with an Alaskan

Whilst this post might have more to do with a game played with leather and willow to a guy who lives in a part of the world that could only accommodate ice cricket for most of the year, well to be honest the UK isn’t much better for cricketing weather either but that’s beside the point, it’s actually about this years ESRI’s Developers Summit which I was lucky enough to attend this year in Palm Springs.

To ArcGIS 10 and beyond!

image The 2010 #DevSummit was a cornucopia of new technologies and online systems rolling out towards the release of ArcGIS 10. Even though I work for a distributor there was still lots of new stuff to see especially around the online world through use of Amazon for hosted ArcGIS Server (pricing to be confirmed), you can see an overview imagefrom the Business Partners Conference here and the development of the aforementioned arcgis.com (currently not accessible, but will be real soon and has the new ArcGIS Explorer Online) which you can see two videos of here (BPC) and here (DS).

The iPhone SDK got quite a lot of slide-time in both the plenary here as well as a number of sessions. I wanted to make time to have a look, I have an iPhone but no Mac, but there were so many other interesting sessions that I never had a chance, although I can now catch up online.

Online all the time.

Due to the nature of today’s internet the videos of the developers summit were online before my flight had dropped me back at Heathrow. So you too can follow mostly the same schedule that I followed, minus the face to face discussions with Development leads, Service Leads, Product Managers and other Distributors that make conferences like these invaluable and allow you to plan your development strategies for months to come. Some of the sessions I say were as follows.

  • The plenary : lots of videos here. Digs into all the different areas of the upcoming product.
  • Using the ArcGIS Server REST API’s : I can’t get enough about the REST API, the variety of new geometry functions provided
  • An Overview of the ArcGIS API for Microsoft Silverlight/WPF : I’ve been doing lots of Silverlight development recently and whilst many of the cool kids went to the Flex sessions, I checked that I wasn’t doing anything insane by going to some of the Silverlight ones.
  • Python Scripting for Map Automation in ArcGIS 10 : I like the way you can analyze map documents using arcpy! In fact I like most of the stuff you can do with arcpy, now if only someone would write me an avenue wrapper for it and I’d be good.
  • Advanced Map Caching Topics : Lot’s of tips about how to create efficient caches, how caches will change in ArcGIS 10 and the new mixed mode image format, watch and cache.

Unfortunately some of the interesting ones aren’t up there yet, especially the one from the prototype lab with Augmented reality and Microsoft surface demo’s which looked quite slick (and had one of the biggest overhead camera’s I had ever seen), David Chappell’s keynote going through Cloud Platforms (a must watch if you haven’t heard him go through this before) and finally there was another Silverlight session where they showed Windows Phone 7 integration with the Silverlight API. If I see them post them online I’ll update the list above.

So what’s with the title?image

Anyway the title of this piece is all about the benefits about attending a conference far away from home, the opportunity to talk to people face to face about technology, something that is not possible when your watching the talks over the internet. In this case, we were out for dinner one night, when a colleague turns up with some poor unsuspecting fellow he’s imagemet at the conference (@jdoneill from Girdwood, AK), as is the way with conversations with me the subject turned on to cricket and then the floodgates opened.

Although we never did discuss the merits of leg theory I did try and cover all the other aspects of the game, he even managed to seem interested for most of the conversation as well, he was a baseball fan so the compare / contrast, mutual appreciation of each others stat laden sport ensued. If you ever want to image read such a comparison from an English point of view then I’ll point you to this book.

As an aside we won’t mention about the guy he turned up with the next night. Remember, what happened in Palm Springs, stays in Palm Sp
rings, well apart from the technical information that is.

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