.NET Curriculum Workshop

Black Marble are presenting on behalf of Microsoft at the .NET Curriculum Workshop tomorrow.  We will be teaching Academics about .NET, and fortunately the material is now finished!


Tech Friday Morning

The Final Day at TechED

it’s the final day at TechED, TechED has been great. Unfortunately I have spent most of my time in hall 8 which has poor wireless coverage.

Highlights (so far)


This year’s bag is a bizarre orange courier bag!

Express,Express,Express the whole of the visual studio product range now have an entry edition and they look very jolly.

Team Services, is Microsoft’s enterprise sized developer productivity tool, needless to say it will be trialed at Black Marble as soon as is possible.

 SOA is the current buzz word of choice; Don Box predicted that Business Agents will be the next. Don also took time to refute Joel (Joel on Software) ….


Rafal Lukawiecki presented a very good overview of the direction of MSF followed by Prashant Sridharan on Team system where he covered a few points on MSF schema’s which are implemented in Team Services


For my own development I went to see Rafal present a 400 session on Cryptography which covered off a good analysis w.r.t the algorithms and implementation, I already have a strong background in cryptography but it was very interesting to hear another persons view including rollout and usage issues.

The best session of the day was by Clemens Vasters on state machines in multilayered .NET applications, which led on to many discussions for the rest of the night.

The only downside to the day was a poor party, 6000 Techies in a small (for the number of people) and very hot room.

However the best session I have attended was on 8th Layer Security by Steve Riley.


Richard @ TechEd

I have just been to a session by Gert Drapers – Understanding and Optimising ADO.NET. I think of all the sessions I have been to at this year’s TechEd, thus far, that this one will have most direct effect on the code I write.

If you use ADO.NET to access you SQL Server check out the session slides. The performance gains that are possibility available to you are significant, but I must dash to check my SQL query parameterization!


TechEd Europe 2004

Robert and Richard are currently soaking up the sights and sounds of TechEd Europe in Amsterdam.  Look out for their posts throughout the week.

Bond, James Bond in Canada

The James Bond 40th Anniversary Exhibition is now in Canada, Science World in Vancouver to be exact.  Black Marble continues to contribute to this touring exhibit, check out our website soon for more details!

AI for Games

Black Marble have completed work on the AI for Games project, with the School of Informatics at the University of Bradford.  This Microsoft-supported project was instigated to teach students about AI with an interesting and unusual approach.  Black Marble adapted Virus and Terrarium for use in lessons, and by all accounts the students benefited a great deal from the course, as well as enjoying it immensely!

More details on our website soon.

Terrarium Academic & The Virus Game round up

The Game Servers have run over 250,000 games during the duration of the AIFG course. We have also produced a Pocket PC version of the virus game and there are already plans for a second version of the Academic Terrarium.


Students Get bitten by Bugs

Feedback on the AI for Games module at the University of Bradford has been excellent, with some students reporting it their favourite part of the curriculum. The favourite part has been producing bugs for the Academic Version of Terrarium.


End of Conference

Last night we had the end of conference meal, followed by a group (Peter Drayton & Ian Palmer) of us playing TransAmerica into the wee hours.  The presentation was well received despite Peter overrunning 🙂