Microsoft WPC Day 2 – off to an odd start

Day 2 at Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference and things got off to an odd start. There was an accident in the feeder to the Ted Williams tunnel last night that has backed up traffic all over Boston. So as a result Microsoft decided to postpone the entire event by 30 minutes, so as a result we ran the event on Microsoft Eastern Standard time for the day.
The Boston Convention Center is not the best venue. I think there are twelve toilets in the whole place, which lead to the odd situation pictured below…when have you ever seen a line out of a men’s bathroom and the women’s bathroom with easy access? I guess that speaks to the demographics of a typical IT conference.
When does this ever happen?
One more thing on the venue: the food service is awful! The food quality is not good and to add insult to injury, it’s hard to find. There are these stations set-up at certain points throughout the hall. They all seem to have different stuff, and basic things like napkins and silverwear are hard to find. Overall the venue is a D+.
Now, on to the content. The opening keynote was preceeded by an African children’s choir, which wasn’t all that good. Steve gave his typical rah-rah. One interesting announcement was Microsoft Dynamics CRM Live, which Steve said was “the most expected release from Microsoft in history”. The CRM product is really strong now, so I think this will do well against and the various offerings from SAP and Oracle.
There were two follow-on keynotes from the Office and Vista VP’s. Not too much new here, but then again I have been to a lot of Microsoft events in the last year and it is pretty close to the release. One thing that really stood out was how they are trying to be “cool” by talking about mash-ups and RSS every chance they get. There was also a lot of focus on how Word and Office Sharepoint can do blogs and wikis now. I think its all good for the tech in general because as soon as Microsoft does something it will immediately become more accepted by everyone.
One nice thing for UGS: Chris Capossella was discussing Office for Business Applications and had a nice slide that showed the main apps that is was useful for and PLM was there right along side ERP, SCM and CRM. Just the way we have been positioning it for 5 years! Nice to see someone like Microsoft pick this up as once again this is a good indicator of it becoming Mainstream.
PLM on an Microsoft slide!






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