November 02, 2007
Southwest Fox 2007 Conference – Stream of Consciousness
Visual FoxPro is not dead; hell, it isn’t even breathing hard. For anyone who cares, I am suggesting that the NEXT version of VFP be codenamed, “Lazarus” because what I saw at the Southwest Fox 2007 Conference, makes me believe that VFP is rising from the dead (if, indeed, it ever was dead). How apropos that the conference was held so close to a city named Phoenix.
In the coming days, I will be blogging about my experience at the most recent developer’s conference for Microsoft’s Visual FoxPro and giving more detailed accounts of sessions I attended. Today, however, I am just going to give you some “three dot” journalism and some random thoughts and tid bits.
Bucking the current trend in FoxPro developer conferences, SWFox 2007 set a conference attendance record. With three walk-on registrants the day the conference began, the total number of attendees was 151 (plus speakers) which was MORE THAN DOUBLE (albeit, just by one) last year’s attendance.
I loved Whil Hentzen’s line about getting older and forgetting more often when it comes to syntax. He suggested that he is in the “Write once, forget often” mode.
Andy Kramek was giving a presentation about SQL when someone shouted out, “There’s a bug in your code.” Andy immediately asked, “Where?” To which the attendee responded, “Well, not IN your code, it’s ON your code.” Indeed there was, an actual, giant BUG (of some type) was crawling down the screen where Andy was projecting his code.
The weather was PERFECT! The conference staff did a great job as did the hotel/conference center personnel. There was very little to complain about. With the overflow crowd, it was, at times, a bit difficult to navigate through the crowds. Actually, it would have been a lot easier if there weren’t so many back packs. This made everyone wearing them twice as big. Trying to squeeze between to back-packed attendees would have been a lot easier if they were not wearing the backpacks. On the other hand, it might have been just as easy if I had made it a point to drop some gross (in every sense of the word) tonnage before the conference. I wouldn’t want people to complain about MY “bellypack”.
Speaking of complaints, I do have one. It is more of a pet peeve, but still... what is it about “PUT YOUR PHONES ON VIBRATE” that some attendees don’t get? Every speaker reminded attendees to make sure their phones/pagers/Buck Rogers Atomic ray guns were all set to vibrate (or stun). Yet, in the sessions that I attended there were at least a half a dozen cell phones that rang. I guess those people have the card in their wallet that say, “but me” as in “The rules apply to everyone...” Inconsiderate, very inconsiderate. OK, I am getting down from the soap box.
Another interesting sign was that (VERY subjectively) I felt that the percentage of female attendees was way up from what it usually is. I have no figures, but it would not surprise me if females accounted for 15+% of the attendees, which, in the world of geeks and “Pocket Protector Pow Wows” is a pretty high number. This is a good sign for the distaff side.
Yes, the conference was wonderful. Fun. Informative. Exhilarating. “Brain-baking” and definitely worth the price. I am wondering if it is too early to sign up for next year’s conference. Keep checking back as I will be elaborating, in detail, on some of the sessions that really opened up my eyes and, in some cases, have caused me to reconsider my opinions on several issues.
Posted by Dave Aring on November 2, 2007 | Permalink
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Um... VFP may not be dead, but there certainly won't be any "new versions". MS has plainly stated that.
Unless there was some announcement at SW Fox that changed that. If so, please enlighten us!
Posted by: Bob Archer | Nov 2, 2007 10:34:10 AM
I certainly did NOT mean to imply that MS would be putting out another version. I know that, since they made the announcement earlier in the year, that the chances of something like that WOULD BE about as likely as Elvis "rising from the dead". However, if the .000000000001% chance kicks in and they DO come out with a VFP 10, I am STILL nominating "Lazarus" as the code name.
Thanks for the comment.
Posted by: Dave Aring | Nov 2, 2007 11:23:08 AM
A new version does not necessarily have to be brought out by MS. It seems Etecnologia could shape the next definition of VFP 10. They certainly are a serious candidate, although one can't be sure at this stage.
Posted by: Lennert Blom | Nov 3, 2007 8:16:18 AM
EXCELLENT point. Plus... you have given me the perfect opportunity to mention VFPX. If you haven't visited http://www.codeplex.com/VFPX, by all means do so. There are many VERY COOL enhancements to VFP 9 and more are on the way. This project is world-wide and ongoing. It is ALMOST like seeing a VFP 10 (VFPX - get it? - oh, geeks are so clever) come to life.
Posted by: Dave Aring | Nov 3, 2007 8:42:24 AM