A Blog by Scott Isaacs


Less Than 72 Hours Away

Deeper in .NET 2008 is 3 days away — this Saturday!  I can’t believe it myself.  The time has flown by and I’m amazed that everything managed to get worked out.  If you haven’t already, go register to attend — you won’t be disappointed. 

Also, we just made an announcement on Monday that we are adding an Attendee Party after the conference.  Just stick around at the hotel for a while and enjoy the food and fun.  At the time of this writing, there are only about 40 spots left at the party, so if you want to go, be sure to sign up right away. 

You can sign up for both the Deeper in .NET 2008 sessions and the Attendee Party at www.deeperin.net.  Tell all your friends, coworkers and clients that they should come.  I hope to see everyone there!

Deeper in .NET 2008 Registration Open!

I’m very happy to announce that registration for Deeper in .NET 2008 is now open.  You can visit the site now to get the latest info and register to attend.

Lots of the info is still in the works, but there is definitely some good info out there now.  In addition to all of the info about our sponsors (we have six so far!) we’ve announced three of the speakers that will be coming to Milwaukee on April 5 for Deeper in .NET 2008 (DiDN).

We’re very happy to have Jason Beres from Infragistics returning to Milwaukee.  Jason has been at all but one of our Deeper in .NET conferences and has spoken for us more than just about any other single speaker (that’s one of those unverified statistics, but it seems to be about right).

Also, joining us this year courtesy of INETA is Mark Miller from Developer Express.  I’ve never experienced the pleasure of seeing Mark present myself, but everyone I speak to tells me that I’ve been missing out.  His presentation is sure to keep you entertained and informed.

Our third speaker for Deeper in .NET 2008 is Richard Campbell.  You may know of Richard from his company Strangeloop Networks, or perhaps you’ve heard him as co-host on .NET Rocks!  I spoke with Richard on the phone the other day and he sounds just as excited about coming to Milwaukee as we are to have him.

More speakers, the schedule, and the details of the different sessions will be posted in the upcoming weeks, so please keep checking back on the site for the latest info.  I’ll also try to post updates on my site as more details are finalized.

I mentioned earlier that we have six sponsors signed up so far.  We’re very thankful to New Resources Consulting (Platinum), Edgenet (Platinum), Centare Group (Gold), Stratagem (Gold), Compuware (Gold), and Exacta Corporation (Silver) for getting involved and supporting the group.  Without them there wouldn’t be a conference this year.

We still need more sponsors, though, to make DiDN a huge success, so if your company is interested, please have them contact me and visit our sponsors page for more info.

So sign up today and start telling everyone you know about Deeper in .NET.  If you blog, blog about it and trackback here or send me a link.  Tell your co-workers, family and neighbors.  I’m very excited about DiDN and it’s coming up soon on April 5 (just over 7 weeks away)!

More About The WI .NET UG Holiday Party

So the WI .NET Users Group’s Holiday Party is coming up soon.  Today I was able to increase the registration capacity because Dave Bost from Microsoft was able to come through for us and got us a few dozen more Visual Studio 2008 licenses than previously expected.

By the way, if you’re attending the party to install Visual Studio, Dave has a great post that includes some steps you should take to prepare for the installation.  He also talks about a number of contests surrounding the party.  There is even a contest you can enter even if you can’t make it to the party.

One of the contests is a Demo Contest.  We are looking for a number of people who are willing and able to do a short demo (around 5-15 minutes, depending on participation).  If you’ve been using VS08 or .NET 3.5 and would like to talk about one of your favorite features, please contact me and let me know.  As long as the schedule permits, we’ll allow people to "sign up" to give a quick demo right there at the party, but we’d like to get as many interested people as possible to sign up in advance.

Even though we have again reached our limit for Visual Studio licenses, there is another link to register on our site.  We’d still like to have everyone at the party for the food and fun, so sign up using this alternate link.  Also, by signing up you’ll be added to the waiting list in case anyone the already registered is unable to make it for some reason.

I hope to see everyone there.

Holiday Party 2007 — Already Sold Out

I recently posted about a Holiday Party that Microsoft is sponsoring for the WI .NET Users Group.  Well, unfortunately, a mere 3.5 hours after making the announcement, the event has filled up.  The Chicago .NET Users Group is also having a similar event, and theirs "sold out" in 2 hours.

Microsoft had a particular number of licenses available for us at this event, and we have already reached the limit.  My contact there is working to see if there is anything that can be done to add more, but he’s not sure yet what will be available.

If anything else comes up and more space is made available I will definitely make an update.  I apologize for those of you that wanted to register but were not able to get signed up in time.  This booked up much faster than anticipated.

Please check back regularly in case more seats are added.  I will send a newsletter update as well if that happens.

Deeper in .NET 2008 – Planning

So, if you’re a .NET developer in southeast Wisconsin, or if you’ve read my blog for a while, you may know that I am the president of the WI .NET Users Group (UG).  You may also remember that in spring 2006 we had a day-long conference called Deeper in .NET 2006.  It was a great event, with several hundred attendees and five nationally recognized speakers.  Best of all, since the UG is sponsor supported, Deeper in .NET was completely free for all attendees.

Well, after a hiatus in 2007, we are currently planning Deeper in .NET 2008 right now.  While no plans have yet been finalized and everything in this blog post is tentative, I wanted to share some of what we have in mind to get community feedback.

Currently, we are planning to have DiDN08 on April 5, 2008.  The format will be similar to previous years, and we will have 5-6 sessions over the course of the day.  As usual, we will be trying to attract the top speaking talent we can find to present of the topics that are the most interesting in the Microsoft development world.

Although we are already in contact with a few potential speakers, I’d like to give everybody this opportunity give their ideas for both speakers and topics.  Have a burning desire to hear your favorite speaker or author right here in your own backyard?  Let me know.  Really want to find out more about Microsoft’s latest and greatest product that will meet the impossibly difficult business need you are facing at work?  Leave a comment.  Have any other ideas about the conference, or about the UG in general?  My ears are open.  While I can’t promise miracles, I will promise that we will review every suggestion and try to make this conference what our members want it to be.

Also, if you’re a past or present sponsor of the UG and are interested in finding out how you can get involved with this thriving community, let me know.  I will be sending out some e-mails over the coming weeks to those that have sponsored or expressed interest in the last couple years, so be sure to watch your inbox.

As time gets closer, more and more info will be available on the UG site.  In the meantime, I’ll be sure to post anything here on my blog tagged with DiDN.  If you’re a blogger, by all means, blog about it, and trackback to this post, and/or tag it DiDN.  And if you blog, be sure to check out our Evangelist program.

WI .NET Users Group Holiday Party

Ho ho ho!  Merry Christmas!Ho, ho, ho!  I’ve got an early Christmas gift for those of you who are .NET developers near the Milwaukee area.

Microsoft and the WI .NET Users Group are teaming up to throw a little holiday party this year.  Many of the details are still in the works, but plan on having a lot of fun.  We’re trying to arrange some extra prizes and perhaps some better food than we have at our normal meetings — not that there’s anything wrong with pizza, though.  We’re also checking the possibility of having an XBox setup for some gaming that night.

Also, and this is pretty exciting, in addition to the fun and food, bring your computer and you will have a chance to install the RTM bits of Visual Studio 2008.

Yes, Microsoft will be providing licensed versions of Visual Studio 2008 for those who bring their computers and install right then and there.  Once they’ve installed VS2008, we will take their contact info and Microsoft will ship them a licensed version in the coming weeks.

The date has been set for December 11, and we will probably be meeting at the Waukesha Microsoft office.  Please register now if you plan to attend.  Microsoft would like to get a good head count to make sure we are prepared with everything. 

So, tell all your friends, your co-workers, your boss, your family members, your neighbors and the waiter at your favorite lunch establishment about it.  And blog about it.  You can link back here or to the "official page" at http://www.wi-ineta.org/holiday.  Who knows, maybe we’ll have another Evangelist blogging contest?

Keep watching my blog and the event page for updates as more info is available.

Official Press Release from INETA NorAm


For Immediate Release

INETA North America Membership Division Announces: New Membership Mentor — IL, IN, WI
Scott Isaacs, Milwaukee, WI, USA
From INETA User Group: Wisconsin .NET Users Group

Bellevue, WA — October 12, 2007 — INETA North America Vice President in charge of the Membership Division, Chris Wallace, announced today the new Membership Mentor for the territory Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin — Scott Isaacs.

“INETA is proud to announce that Scott Isaacs is now our Membership Mentor for Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin” Wallace said. “Scott comes highly recommended by those who know and recognize him for his tremendous work with our developer community. We are proud to call Scott one of our Membership Mentors.”

Isaacs is now taking over the important INETA volunteer position of Membership Mentor and the duties that have been the responsibility of Scott Spradlin. “We thank Scott Spradlin for the volunteer service to INETA as one of our Membership Mentors” Wallace continued. Spradlin will remain an active participant in our user group world in his other capacities. “We thank our former Membership Mentors for their volunteer activities with us and wish them well. Spradlin has taken the position of INETA Sponsorship Director.”

“Please welcome Scott Spradlin to this new position and extend every courtesy in working to succeed in our challenges ahead as we work together to build a stronger developer community. Good luck, Scott!” Wallace said. 

About Scott Isaacs — Born and raised a stone’s throw from California’s Silicon Valley, Scott Isaacs discovered an early interest in computers.  As with many other 30-somethings in IT and software development, it started off with the Commodore 64 and BASIC.  Having gone to college for Applied Mathematics, software was primarily a hobby for Scott until the late 90s.  That’s when Scott took his first software development job at the Department of Education.  Since then, Scott has developed software for dot com companies, news/media corporations and financial institutions, as well as a number of other businesses on a consulting basis.  Currently, he is working at another startup, building an RFID-based security system. As the first version of the .NET Framework was released in early 2002, a new users group was being formed in Wisconsin.  Scott attended the first few meetings, and when a call for volunteers was made, he signed up to help out however he could.  In 2005, Scott became the president of the WI .NET Users Group (www.wi-ineta.org).  Since that time, membership has grown by about 50% to over 2500 total members, and average meeting attendance has nearly doubled.  Additionally, a second, independently-run group (Madison .NET Users Group) was formed out of the WI .NET Users Group to better serve the growing number of members in the region. Scott moved to Wisconsin in 1999, and now lives in a Milwaukee suburb with his wife and daughter.  He blogs at www.tapmymind.com, and can be contacted from that site.

About INETA — INETA is a not-for-profit volunteer led organization whose mission is to provide services, resources, and networking opportunities to user groups and individual member’s interest in .NET technologies. The INETA focus is on face-to-face interaction through local user group meetings as well as larger regional, national, and worldwide events.

The INETA worldwide team is a collection of five regions working together to foster the global goals of INETA through independently operated locally focused culturally personalized organizations under the INETA name. Currently, INETA supports more than 250 user groups that represent more than 150,000 developers in the United States and Canada, plus about four times that many in total worldwide.

The INETA NorAm Membership Division is the exclusive internal organization that provides complete membership services to the INETA NorAm association members plus internal and external entities to the association. Membership Mentors act as advisor, counselor, guide, tutor, teacher, and guru of Membership to INETA member user group leadership and user groups.

Supported by Microsoft Corporation and other sponsors, INETA is an independent volunteer organization run by user group leaders and developers, http://www.ineta.org.


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