Xbox MVP

I received an awesome e-mail on Tuesday from Microsoft. It read as follows:

Congratulations! We are pleased to present you with the 2008 Microsoft® MVP Award!  The MVP Award is our way of saying thank you for promoting the spirit of community and enhancing people’s lives and the industry’s success every day.  Your extraordinary efforts in Xbox technical communities during the past year are greatly appreciated.

It seems like I’m actually the first Xbox MVP for the African continent which is really cool. This year will be an awesome year considering it has started off on such an amazing note. 🙂


Event – Building Custom LINQ Operators

There is nothing like starting the SA Developer new year off with a bang, this time its a talk on building custom LINQ operators using C# 3.0.

The LINQ features of C# 3.0 allow specialized constructs to be integrated into the structure of the language, such as the ability to run complex SQL queries against the database without “leaving” the C#. This ability is implemented using custom query operators that effectively alter the language to better suit a specific domain. This talk will investigate how the mechanism works, and how it can be leveraged to set up other domain specific language constructs within the C# language.

Make sure you pencil the 9th of January 2008 at 18h30 into your calendar and RSVP online here. There is no excuse not to attend, its a free event sponsored by LGIT Smart Solutions.

LGIT is also running a paid for 3 day workshop covering the Development Enhancements in Visual Studio 2008  (outline) on both the 14th of January and the 11th of February 2008. Contact LGIT Smart Solutions by e-mail ( for more information.

[tags]SA Developer .NET,event,LINQ[/tags]

Juval Lowy talk tonight

Juval Lowy A quick reminder for Juval Lowy’s community talk that is happening tonight at Microsoft’s offices in Bryanston. If you have been dabbling with WCF (Windows Communication Foundation) or you would just like to learn more about what it is, then make sure you register and come on through to meet a Software Legend and one of the world’s top .NET experts.

[tags]Juval Lowy,WCF,event[/tags]

27 Dinner by candlelight

27 dinner powered by StormhoekTonight’s 27 Dinner, 27-15 Jozi, was by no means the usual affair. A bumper crowd was expected but unfortunately our lovely power utility company Eskom decided that its the night to start doing some more load shedding. So sometime after 7pm when the event was just getting underway, the power went out in Melrose Arch. It took a little under two hours until the power was finally restored but it seems that hunger and possibly fear of the dark got the better of most of the people as only about thirty people remained.

Nevertheless it was a wonderful evening with David Theron sharing his new J2ME based mobile phone product called iMob. Justin Hartman revealed the new beta version of Afrigator which aims to categorise and aggregate more social media content like news, podcasts, videos and images over and above blogs. You should be able to try the new beta out over here.

As per usual Stormhoek supplied an ample supply of their awesome wines to get the dinner going. I really enjoyed the bottle of Stormhoek Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz 2003 which complimented my lamb shank to perfection.

[tags]27 Dinner,Afrigator,iMob,Eskom,Stormhoek[/tags]

BizTalk Server User Group Launch

BizTalk Server User Group LaunchRecently a couple of BizTalk developers got together on the SA Developer .NET forums and put together the idea of forming a BizTalk user group and it seems to be happening. I got word from Ryan CrawCour that Microsoft is getting involved and together they are launching the new user group starting off with the first event on the 5th of December.

Calling all BizTalkers!

Discover and share with fellow colleagues how BizTalk Server allows diverse systems inside and outside your business to talk to each other without complex and costly integration – enabling you to achieve a true Service Oriented Architecture, and achieve pervasive business process automation.

Connect with other BizTalkers and share best practices and methodologies around BizTalk Server design and implementations.

Microsoft South Africa will be launching the first BizTalk Server User Group on 5 December 2007 at Microsoft’s Campus in Bryanston. To register please click here.

[tags]South Africa,BizTalk,community,SA Developer .NET[/tags]

Dinner with Angie

CubañaLast night a bunch of the Gauteng SA Developer .NET chapter members got together for a dinner meet and greet social with the visiting Western Cape chapter lead Angela Gerber.

We decided to try out Cubaña which is a Havana lounge and Latino caffe located in the recently opened Cedar Square mall behind Fourways Mall. The menu is rather limited for choice unless you feel like interesting cocktails like the chocolate chili martini that Andre was drinking. However the food is reasonably priced and I can recommend the baskets as they are great value for money. Overall the restaurant is popular and definitely has a great vibe.

Unfortunately the place got rather packed when the storm outside got a bit too much and the people outside all crammed inside. The only thing I don’t really like about Cubaña is their need to push the volume up as it gets later. Its almost impossible to hold a conversation and resulted in us leaving and heading off to Ciao Baby Cucina for a quiet coffee and some dessert.

I snapped a few pictures of the evening with my mobile phone, although they didn’t come out too well due to the poor lighting conditions. I’ve posted them up here.

[tags]SA Developer .NET,social,dinner[/tags]