Here in Los Angeles for Microsoft PDC...
I'm finally here in LA, in my room at the Westin Bonaventure, getting caught up on emails and hoping for an early and restful night. I arrived around 1:15 pm, and found that they were already running shuttles between the hotels and the conference center. I didn't register for the pre-conference, but I did head over there to register for the main conference and get all that taken care of. It's hard not to want to compare this to Lotusphere, as that's my conference point of reference for these kind of things.
In terms of transportation, I think LS wins. The shuttles run later, which is a point for PDC. But the shuttles quit running completely between 10:45 and 5'ish each day.
The LA conference center is VERY nice so far as the lobby area goes. Registration was smooth. I didn't wander around the place, figuring I'd find out all the locations starting tomorrow. Their PDC store is huge! Books, swag, you name it. The only part where I was disappointed is that the conference "bag" is one of those plasticky sacks like you see grocery stores selling. I'll definitely be using my Lotusphere backpack to tote around my laptop and such. But later in the week we go back and get the 160GB hard drive with all the software on it. I expect that will more than tip the scale back to the PDC side. :)
Coincidences... My publishing contact at Pearson wasn't able to make the show, but she told me I should go to the booth and introduce myself to Curt Johnson who *would* be there. While taking the shuttle from the airport to the hotel, I was sitting next to a guy and we were engaging in some conference small talk. He mentioned he worked for marketing for a publisher, to which I asked him which one. Turns out it was... Curt Johnson. When I introduced myself, he said... "You're Duffbert!" I love reviewing... :)
Ms. McGivney happened to be leaving LA just as I was arriving, and will be coming back just as I'm leaving. But she found time to get a copy of Wil Wheaton's latest book autographed for me, and it was waiting at the front desk when I checked in. Thanks so much, Kathleen!
Well... since I'm supposed to be doing some actual work, I'll close here for the evening. I won't be twittering any of the sessions "live" here at PDC, as I'm going to be in over my head so far I'll be asking directions to the surface. But I'm sure I'll drop a few observations in over the course of the day, now that I have a laptop that hibernates.
Oh, yeah... the laptop. Friday night, my Sony Vaio, just recently rebuilt with Windows XP and sitting there at the side of my desk, spontaneously rebooted. After I got the Vaio splash screen and startup tones, I got... nothing. Black screen, blinking cursor, and nothing else. Let it cool down, but it wouldn't come back to life. Not the thing to have happen 36 hours before you leave for a week. I decided a new laptop was in order, so I'm now the new owner of an HP Pavilion dv7. 4GB, 320GB hard drive, 17 inch screen, and very nice. Except for having to go back to Vista 64. Sigh... I'd have considered a Mac, but it looks like I'll be playing more in the MS realm in terms of software development, and I think a Windows box is still better for that. :)
And finally, I did my laundry on Saturday, only to realize on Saturday night that my wallet didn't make an exit from my pants beforehand. I'm traveling on laundered money and credit cards.
It's NOT been a good weekend. :)