The Agenda for the Architecture Forum in the North

Eagerly anticipating our Architecture Forum in the North – now in its fourth year!  Taking place on 8 December here in Yorkshire, it is shaping up to be a great day!

We have a great range of speakers lined up and this is a sample of what you can expect from some of the Microsoft Speakers:

Andrew Fryer – Technical Evangelist in Microsoft DPE – All SQL, No SQL, Some SQL

The trusty old relational database has been around for forty odd years,  but will it survive another forty and if so in what form. In this session we’ll look at how the demands of modern business are changing the what and how of data management.

You can follow Andrew on Twitter.

Simon May – IT Pro Evangelist in Microsoft DPE – The Future of IT: making sense of Big Changes

We can all feel that IT is changing, be it the new devices we’re expected to support or the new “cloud” services we’re told to embrace or investigate.  In this session Simon May, Microsoft IT Evangelist will explain the big trends that IT are knocking on the door of the IT department and help you to start thinking about how you can respond in secure, managed and scalable ways.  Cloud, Consumerisation, Big Data and Social are explored during this session and you’ll be left able to see the wood from the trees and where Microsoft’s stack solves problems.

You can follow Simon on Twitter.

Steve ‘Planky’ Plank – Cloud Computing Evangelist in Microsoft DPE – Business Agility and the Cloud

In the 1950s almost no organization owned a computer: too expensive. They ran their computer programs on the computers of large “computer companies”. Calling on immense compute power helped them make more profitable decisions. Today, almost all companies use computers and so the playing field is more level: or is it? Some progressive organisations are finding that not only can it be more economical to use the compute and storage engines of specialized “cloud computing” providers, but also they can respond in an agile way to the organization’s needs. In some cases they can go from an architecture diagram on a whiteboard to a live deployed service in under 15 minutes. It can be de-deployed, when the business need has passed, in less than 5 minutes. Organizations can scale their environments to predictable and unpredictable waves of business activity within minutes. They can try business ideas out with only a fraction of the attendant financial risk associated with building and deploying a large app to support them. Cloud computing achieves this in the modern world by creating a separation between the app and its underlying infrastructure. This session discusses how that separation is enabling modern organisations to profitably respond to business needs faster than has ever been possible and so realize true business agility.

You can follow Planky on his blog.

Giles Davies – Developer Tools Technical Specialist in Microsoft DPE – What Architects need to know about Visual Studio 11

Giles will be exploring what’s new in the architecture tools in Visual Studio 11.

You can follow Giles on Twitter.

Plus, we will be joined by Black Marble’s Robert Hogg, nFocus’ Danny Crone, Microsoft’s Simon Thurman and Gibraltar Software’s Gary Short!

A Series of Fortunate Events

Robert Hogg(RobertHogg)Visual-Studio-2010-Beta-2-Public-Downloads-2

We are delighted at Black Marble to announce a great series of events to brighten your days through the darkness of Autumn and Winter.

Kicking off in September with the first of four Visual Studio events exploring the different products available – from Express to Ultimate – to help you determine which is best for you and your business.

21 September – Black Marble / 12 October – Microsoft London 
16 November – Black Marble / 14 December – Microsoft London.

Middle of October we are running our Mix in the North event – focusing on the highlights of MIX, the conference for web developers and UX designers working the Microsoft platform.  Joining us are Microsoft’s Michael McClary (@michaelmcclary), Will Coleman (@will_coleman) and Mike Taulty (@mtaulty).  As well as some great demos of Windows Phone 7, we will have a Microsoft Surface available for you to try.

During the evening, we will be welcoming companies who have signed up to (or want to sign up to) WebsiteSpark and BizSpark.

November starts with a day full of SharePoint greatness – the morning explores the key features we use having worked with SharePoint 2010 for over a year, and during the afternoon we are focusing on using SharePoint for Content Management.

December see a return of the Architecture Forum in the North – this year’s title is “Tools and Methods for Architects” and we are once again joined by Matt Deacon, Simon Thurman, Simon Davies, Giles Davies and Mark Richardson from Microsoft.

And top it all off, following the success of our Open Day we are opening our doors once more in December – join us for drinks, mince pies and plenty of Christmas cheer!

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The Second Architecture Forum in the North was a Big Success

Black Marble hosted the Second Architecture Forum in the North, and was delighted to welcome back Matt Deacon, Simon Thurman and Simon Davies from Microsoft.  this time they were joined by Mark Richardson and Giles Davies from the Developer Tools team.

Simon Davies (left)

Simon Thurman (left)

The theme of this year’s Forum was the Professional Developer’s Conference (PDC) that took place just two weeks before in Los Angeles.  Matt Deacon, Chief Architectural Advisor from Microsoft opened with the State of Nation.  Simon Davies was next up, exploring Azure – Past, Present and Future.  Simon was then joined by Black Marble’s Robert Hogg to discuss AppFabric.  Finally before lunch, Simon Thurman MC’d the Web Session introducing Black Marble’s Leon Nightingale (SilverLight 4), Barry Wimlett (MVC) and Rik Hepworth (SharePoint 2010).

 

Lunch was a lively affair with round table discussions taking place over Turkey and Stuffing sandwiches and mince pies!Richard Fennell (left) and Mark Richardson (right)

Barry Wimlett (right)After lunch saw Simon Davies return to the stage to discuss Data Services, followed by the Visual Studio 2010 team with Mark Richardson, Giles Davies and Black Marble’s Richard Fennell.  The day was wrapped by  Robert Hogg’s presentation on SQL Server Modelling (formerly known as Oslo).

And another lucky attendee walked away with an XBox!