Best Practices Conference – Washington DC 2009

August 30, 2009 at 11:15 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

WOW – All I can say is Wow! This was a fantastic conference which started for me with a road trip from Anna Maria, FL to Washington DC via Nashville! Having wanted to to explore a little bit of the US from the ground, plus having the Lightning Tools booth and brochures to carry, I decided to drive ane not fly. I made a strategic stop at Rob Fosters house on the way where he prepared the best bbq food i’ve ever eaten (Ping Rob for the recipe).  The following day I went to work with Rob and presented the Buiness Data Catalog to his co-workers and others who had dialed in to the conference.  

On the friday evening we recorded the intro/outro to Cathy Dews podshow episode whilst sat in his back yard 11pm at night drinking Mojito’s.  Saturday morning I set off to Washington DC through countryside that was absolutely georgeous.  Somehow, I managed to pick up my colleague from Dulles airport in Washington arriving only two minutes late after my 700 mile drive.

Rob & Brett recording the Pod Show

Rob & Brett recording the Pod Show

The conference got off to a good start in the bar at The Hyatt in Reston, VA.  Joined by Richard (Lightning Tools), Laura Rogers, Paul Culmsee, Dan Usher, Andrew Woodward and Ruven Gotz, we were all pretty tired but also eager for the conference to start.  I spent most of my time on the Lightning Tools booth at the conference, but the feedback from the attendees regarding the presentations was great.  I did manage to interupt Paul Culmsee in mid flow during his presentation on Reporing Services which led to a walk-off comparing BDC & RS. 🙂


 Manning Publishing sponsored 50 copies of the long awaited book on the BDC which we gave out from the Lightning Tools booth.  I hope everyone that received a copy will enjoy the book ( and also tweet/blog about it! :)).

Developers Guide to the SharePoint 2007 Business Data Catalog

Developers Guide to the SharePoint 2007 Business Data Catalog

On the final day, I presented the Best Practices for the Business Data Catalog which seemed to go down well.  I intro’d the BDC and also discussed topics such as Authentication, Authorization, Customizing the BDC Web Parts and getting the most out of the Search.  This week I received my scores averaging 4.2 which was great but next time I need to knock Woody out of first place.

Having dropped Richard & Sara Windhorst at the airport, it was now time for the long drive home.  Heather Waterman was kind enough to put me up for a night at her amazing house in Laurens, SC and treat me to dinner! Thanks Heather!!!  Thanks also to Rob Foster for making the odd phone call to me on the drive which kind of kept me sane at times.

Thanks to Ben Curry, Mark Elgersma and Bill English for putting on the conference, and definately looking forward to the next one: @stevesmithck!!!!

This was definately one of the best conferences I have been to for networking, as a vendor and for the quality of the presentations.  Well done to everyone that made it a success.


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