Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Shrek and Donkey on another worldwide adventure
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Some heroic tales about TechEd Europe 2010…

Last week I have been at TechEd Europe in Berlin. I was there together with Jan Potemans and four other Belgian student partners: Jeroen, Kurt, Julien and Raphaël. It was my third time at TechEd Europe, but once again I had the time of my life.

  

I have to admit that the past three weeks have been crazy, I've traveled about 19000 km, met dozens of interesting people including some of the brightest minds in the industry, learned a ton about new technologies, got some great new ideas and just had an awesome time in general. Now I have a massive todo-list to tackle and I need get up to speed for the exams, but boy I am happy!

We flew to Berlin in a cozy Avro RJ100 airplane with Brussels Airlines. After the short flight from Brussels to Berlin we hurried to our hotel, dropped off our bags and then hurried to the Messe conference center. Despites our efforts we arrived fashionably late at the MSP Summit. Over there, we had some interesting discussions, followed by some presentations, including a presentation about the cloud -because of course that’s obligatory these days- and the usual Microsoft recruitment talk by Holly Peterson.

At TechEd we also met “the new Caroline” and “the new Leandro”. Jacqueline Russell is the new Academic Lead for Western Europe and Michelle Fleming is now worldwide in charge of the MSP program.

This year we didn’t see that much of Berlin. We went to a nice restaurant on Tuesday night, where I had Blutwurst and after that we went for a walk in the city.

  

In between sessions we also continued our series of interviews. Jeroen, Kurt and I have interviewed (listed in alphabetical order): Brian Keller, Caroline Phillips, Gill Cleeren, Giorgio Sardo, Jacqueline Russell, Jonathan Carter, Katrien De Graeve, Mark Russinovich, Michelle Fleming and Rob Miles. Combined with the interviews we did at PDC, that makes for quite a nice collection! We will publish ‘em all in a jiffy. Update: watch our interviews over here. Special thanks to Jennifer Perret for equipping us with Flip cameras for these interviews.

  

At the Belgian county drink on Wednesday we had a good time too, we had some interesting conversations and met some great people. Good thing Luc Van de Velde introduced his team, I already knew most of them, but the new MSPs didn’t.

On Thursday, after another day full of sessions and interviews, we headed to the MSP party. After some burgers and beers we went to drop off our bags at the hotel and then took the U-Bahn to a club on the 15th floor of a building on Alexanderplatz. When we arrived there we weren’t allowed to enter; the bouncers said we needed girls. You know, with a group of student partners, that is kind of a problem! After Jan called, the lovely Jacqueline came down, but amazingly even her smile wasn’t enough to get us in! Eventually we got in and had a good time! And oh, in our opinion there was nothing wrong with the boy/girl ratio inside, but I guess one girl for every Berlin boy isn’t enough…

Friday was a sad day. In the morning we went to a last session, said goodbye to the nice folks at U2U and left the conference center. It was time to fly back home. The end of another great adventure!

PS: Donkey is Jeroen

Disclosure: I attended TechEd as a guest of Microsoft. Special thanks to Caroline Phillips, Jan Potemans, Jacqueline Russell and Michelle Fleming.

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