I’m in LA with Team Falafel (in booth 117, come on by!) for PDC09 where Microsoft has some announced some exciting developments in their cloud computing strategy otherwise known as $g(Windows Azure). The announcements this year go a long way towards really completing with $g(Amazon’s EC2) offering including support for user created VM images that can run in the cloud. The official rollout won’t occur until Feb 2009 when MS will actually begin billing for usage.
One of the other big announcements is the beta of $g(Silverlight 4). There are some really compelling features and it’s looking more and more like Silverlight will be the preferred UI not only on the web but on the desktop as well trumping both WinForms and WPF. One thing that was particularly interesting to me was a Facebook demo of a Silverlight 4 desktop application for a few reasons. One, the application was a real highlight of lots of the new features in SL4. Two, I’ve spent time working with the Facebook Developer Toolkit (FDT) which has a new 3.0 release with support for Silverlight and this time it seems to have a bit more support from Microsoft than in the past with a commitment to keep the API up-to-date.
All in all, the conference seems to be pretty well attended with perhaps the biggest news being the give-away of 1000’s of free netbooks to all attendees.