I really enjoyed my time in Cedar Rapids, Iowa for the Heartland Developers Conference (HDC) 2005. I already mentioned how it seemed like a homecoming to me, but I had no idea how much it would mean to me personally after being there a couple of days. After living in New England for 9 years, I found I miss living in the midwest. Everyone I met was nice and appreciative, food was great and inexpensive (including the liquor!), and developers were eager to learn about new changes in existing technologies. What more could you ask for in a conference?
The session I did for Programming SQL Server using the hosted .NET Runtime had at least 200 people in attendance, about 4 times more than last year's talk I did on Service Broker! The great thing was the subject was completely new to most people in the audience, so I hope I conveyed enough information to give a taste of the SQLCLR changes as well as insights on making informed decisions for when, where, and why to use it. I couldn't get one of the demos to work, so unfortunately I ended the talk a little early, but I had some great comments and questions which I want to explore further on my own.
I thought the session I did for Security Changes in .NET 2.0 and VS 2005 went well also. There were between 125 and 150 people I believe. At one point, there was a good standard set of questions about how to securely handle passwords today. One drawback about some presentations I give are they can be fairly narrow, and in the middle I get ideas and impressions from the audience that more comprehensive security talks may be desired. It would be cool to see something like the MAD Security Code Camp take place in that area as well. I certainly would be open to speaking again in the area on this and other topics.
In the security talk, I did mention these resources:
Overall, HDC 2005 was a great conference, though I unfortunately missed part of it as I was in Orlando for VSLive! at the first part of the week (it is too bad these were overlapping). As I said before, Joe and crew did an excellent job in putting together something that will continue to grow and help developers in the area. I have posted the slides and code for HDC 2005 and I will be posting it for conference attendees on the HDC site as well.