Just flew back from Vegas...

...and boy are my arms tired.

DEC 2006 is done, and so am I.

This was by far the best DEC ever. I've got lots of thoughts about the conference, but I'll only a note a few of them in this post.

  • The Green Valley Resort in Las Vegas worked well as a venue for DEC. I was concerned that putting the show on in Vegas would result in half the attendees disappearing after lunch. But that didn't happen. In fact relative to other DECs, this one had a better retention rate as the conference wore on. The fact the Vegas is easy for almost everyone to get to is a great benefit as well.
  • The quality of the presentations was noticably better than last year. Some of that was due to my being a little more particular regarding which proposals I accepted, and part was... not.
  • The joe and Dean show was certainly the most popular session, and this is primarily a credit to Dean's animated and humorous (humourous?) style and joe's uncompromisingly take-it-or-leave it personality. They work well together. The content was very good, but trust me, if anyone else tried to explain up-to-dateness vectors, USNs and high water marks, they wouldn't have had near the interest level that joe and Dean did.
  •  Lost in the afterglow of Joe and Dean's session was Wook's amazing feats of creativity in response to Stuarts challenge. I mean, come on:
    • An interpretive dance (with the lovely Pamela!) describing Active Directory synchronization.
    • Origami figures describing the five FSMO roles in AD.
    • Exending the Schema in the form of Green Eggs and Ham.

Each was brilliantly done. I don't think I could have even taken a stab at any of them.

  • I was really happy that the new Identity product team leadership (Stuart, Angela Mills, Alex Weinert, Murli Satagopan and Levon Esibov) came down. They all raved about the conference, and I gather that they were able to talk to a lot of customers.
  • The MIIS track was significantly better in terms of quality and quantity relative to last year. People are beginning to get the picture of the integrated identity platform that Microsoft is building.
  • The preconference DR workshop was a good idea but the intrastructure wasn't very well done. Guido and I (and Dean, and joe, and Ulf, and Jorge, and Laura put in some seriously late nights and early mornings to get the lab environment working, only to have it ultimately screwed up by an "improved" wireless configuration that Cox brought in. It had been working fine Friday...