Monday, May 24, 2004

TechEd 04, Day 1

Not only is today the first day of TechEd, it’s also the day we announce our most ambitious project to date: TechNet Magazine. I walked from the Westgate to the convention center, my rapidly fading synapses managing to recognize some of the same sites I last encountered in 1997. Or, to be exact, I walked past the Ralph’s supermarket in the middle of town.

I needed a Snapple. Ralph’s had the promise of Snapple, but they appeared to have nothing but Mango Madness and some other crap. I walked through the store, desparately searching for their Snapple repository, but found only the one cooler in the front, next to the walk-up latte stand. Using classic Eastern ingenuity, I scanned the back row and saw one Snapple cap unlike the others. YES! It was the only regular iced tea in the place.

After our morning meeting with CMP, we repaired to the exhibit floor, where a stack of TechNet Magazine cards was waiting for us. Since you asked, TechNet Magazine is a new publication we’re launching for the IT professional.

We’ve got one issue planned right now, discussing security from the IT perspective. It’s going to be great, you’re going to have to sign up for it, and you’re going to tell your friends about it. It’s going to be the best thing you read all year. (Fiction and non-fiction not included.)

This was an unusually long day, punctuated by the exhibit floor reception in the evening. They had THREE KINDS of chicken wings! It was just fabulous. It turned out that the punctuation was just a semicolon, however, because from there I headed over to Ruth’s Chris for one of those 9:30 PM plus time zone steak dinner opportunities that only come along a few times in your life before your heart explodes. I managed to escape with just a salad before heading over to the W Hotel for what turned out to be a four-hour nightcap. It started with the media reception, then ended up huddled up in a cabana with a slowly dwindling crowd from exotic locales like Toronto and Maryland. We learned, among other things, that the Quality Inn has smoking rooms that actually smoke, and that you can upgrade to a menthol suite for just $29/night. Who says business travel isn't glamorous?

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