Friday, September 15, 2006

FoxForward - Day 1

I arrived just in time for the Meet and Greet at 4 PM. I had planned to be here earlier as I've had a grueling few days at work and wanted to rest a bit beforehand, but driving through Atlanta was not fun. A 5 hour planned drive took 6 1/2 hours.

It's a small but very nice hotel; part of the Hilton chain. Not dissimiliar to a Hampton Inn in terms of amenities but an ample lower lobby for conference activities. Nice staff and convenient restaurants nearby.

As anyone who knows me realizes, I rarely sit through sessions. It's not that I don't appreciate the content or speakers, it's just that I don't seem to learn well being lectured to and if the speaker does pique my interest, then I immediately want to run off and explore the topic on my own.

The 1st two sessions were on data English language query by Dave Bernard and creating custom report controls by Bo Durban. I only glanced at Dave's session (sorry) and spent sometime in Bo's. Bo's session was the most heavily attended and I think that speaks volumes to the lack of general understanding of the ReportListener and other VFP9 report enhancements. Afterwards I spoke with some folks who told me more about what Dave and his company, Intellection, is doing with natural language queries and I regreted not being more present. In fact, I'd like to see him given more opportunities to present this topic and his approach to the issue at other conferences.

The second, and final, session was the VFP World Domination talk by Craig Boyd. Interesting. I sat in for most of that session as I know Craig is "in the know" on the whole Sedna cycle and I wanted to see what's being done since I left.

Well....precious little was said on the Sedna topic. Most of what Craig presented was on the pros and cons of VFP and what cool things Craig has done in the last year or so. I came away with the impression that Craig is trying to cover too much ground with a very wide topic. IMHO, the pros and cons of VFP and being a VFP developer are more suited to a discussion group. I found myself in near agreement with his assessments but in some disagreement with his conclusions. And I would bet that there were seasoned VFP devs in the audience who would agree with neither of us. Needs to be a panel discussion.

Overall, however, Craig did a good job. It's refreshing to see someone virtually unknown a few years ago burst on the scene with his drive and enthusiasm and passion for the product. We need more Craigs....he's one of the good guys. Kudos to Yag and Ken for supporting him.

In my last post, I mentioned being eager to see old friends and named Dave Stevenson and Ed Leafe. Well, Dave was delayed and was not expected in until late so I missed him. I saw Ed and, in fact, sat with him in Craig's session. I forgot to name John Harvey who's also here and who I consider a buddy.

I was very pleasantly surprised to see John Miller and Bill Anderson here as well. As well as a whole mess of folks who I've known on the UT or met at the other cons and plain forgot the names. Early Alzheimers I suppose.

Off to bed....more tomorrow.

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