Today (Friday, April 4, 2014) was the third and final day of the 2014 Microsoft Build Conference. Build is Microsoft’s conference for software developers. There are a total of about 8,000 people here (which includes attendees, speakers, vendors, press, and so on).
Unlike the previous two days which started with incomprehensibly-long three-hour keynotes, today started immediately with session talks at 9:00 AM. I watched most of “The Future of C#” which really should have been titled “Overview of Roslyn, a C# API to the C# Compiler”. My immediate reaction to that talk was along the lines of, “I’m very happy to use the existing C# compiler, thank you very much. I don’t need an API into the compiler for what I do.”
I gave my talk from 10:30 to 11:30. Even though the conference organizers put my talk in a large room that held 500+ people, the room filled to capacity quickly and the doors had to be shut a full 10 minutes before my talk was scheduled to start. To be honest, I kind of expected this because my talk was clearly designed for developers, unlike too many of the Build talks that targeted managers and non-developers. Here’s my room before anyone was allowed in:
I think my talk went pretty well. I tried to keep things informal and not take myself too seriously — many of the talks and keynotes I’d seen were way too scripted and formal for my tastes. Before my actual talk, I gave a 5-minute intended-to-be-humorous PowerPoint where I showed some images of my impressions of the first few days of Build. Here’s one lasting image that got quite a few chuckles from the audience:
Interestingly, there were three guys in the audience who were college students of mine in the early 1990s. It was good to see them — I actually remembered after scanning my memory for a few minutes. After my talk I was pretty exhausted (psychologically) because public speaking is truly terrifying for me. But I watched two other Build talks in the afternoon, but they were both duds in my opinion — probably a combination of my mental fatigue plus the topics weren’t in my primary areas of interest.