The first day of Tech Ed 2007 started very early for my flight from Brussels to Barcelona followed by a brief check-in at the hotel. This was my first year of Tech Ed and it was amazing to see how massive this event really is.
S. Somasegar provided the keynote with some interesting upcoming features and products such as Microsoft Sync Framework, Visual Studio 2008, Popfly, etc. As Joris already pointed out the next version of Visual Studio will be available for download (MSDN Subscriber) at the end of November !
A touch of Visual Studio 2008 and .NET 3.5
I really liked Daniel Moth's session on VS 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 as a clear introduction into what we may expect in the near future. Talking from a SharePoint developer's perspective there are some major improvements in this release such as out of the box support for SharePoint Workflows. I'm not sure if there's an OOB support for SharePoint Content Types and such or whether that will be left as an extension. (note: need to verify this at the Ask The Expert booths)
Building an Office Business Application (OBA) in an hour
Eric Carter showed us how to do this within the hour by using VSTO 3.0. The Business Data Catalog (BDC) brings your back-end system's data into SharePoint (MOSS) and is made available by a small, custom web service. A custom Action Pane in the Word document template (using VSTO 3.0) can display this information very easily. On the SharePoint side a custom workflow was used for creating a supporting workspace and blog site for a newly submitted issue.
Since all of this is something I do regularly at work I didn't pick up that much from this session, besides some of the improvements of VS 2008 which makes (development) deployment of your workflow a breeze !
Day 1: 5th November 2007
Day 2: 6th November 2007