Spring brings not only rain and flowers (you know, April shows and May flowers), it also brings our spring technical events. And this time our technical events are taking on a slightly different form.

Okay, to be completely honest, we are still calling the sessions ArcReady (our event for architects and those who want to become architects), MSDN Events Unleashed (for the developer), and the new TechNet Events Unleashed (for the IT Professional). But we are also doing something different for the spring event series: there's a single, connected theme running throughout all events.

And what is that theme, you ask? It's all things next generation Windows client, featuring Windows 7 and Internet Explorer 8!

Windows 7

+

Internet Explorer 8

ArcReady – Brain Food for the Architect
The client (or presentation) tier of our applications is taking on an increasingly important role. Users are expecting more compelling user interfaces, but they also want more functionality from their applications. In this ArcReady we examine how to design and deliver well architected client applications that will be easy to maintain and extend.

Topic 1: Trends and Patterns on the Client Tier
In our first topic we will take a vendor and platform neutral look at some of the trends and emerging technologies that can be used on the client tier. We will look at techniques like Mashups, technologies like Natural User Interfaces (NUI) and the increasing importance of the mobile platform. We will also look at some common patterns that can be used in the architecture of the client tier.

Topic 2: Applying Microsoft Technology on the Client Tier
In our second topic we will take some look at how we can use Microsoft technologies to create well architected and compelling client applications. We will look at technologies like Silverlight and WPF that can be used to create compelling clients. We will also look at technologies that can be used to make your applications more extensible for future development. We will also examine some architectural guidance developed by the Microsoft Patterns and Practices group.

MSDN Events Unleashed – Get Your Dev On
Internet Explorer 8 recently released to the web, and with that release comes a wide range of new capabilities that developers can exploit. Of even more impact to developers everywhere is the upcoming release of Windows 7, also bringing with it several new capabilities for consumers and developers.

Topic 1: Internet Explorer 8 for Developers
The Windows Internet Explorer 8 browser makes it easier to explore and interact with the web. Did you know that there will be a new standards mode by default? While it can easily be turned off, knowing the potential to impact this may have on many sites that have been crafted around various features in past versions is a good idea. Attend this session to learn which current practices you need to change and how the new standards mode affects your development techniques and your existing sites. We review tools that are built into Internet Explorer 8 to help developers debug and create Web pages. We also discuss Web Slices, Accelerators, and Search Suggestion – all of which are key new features in this latest release.

Topic 2: Developing on Microsoft Windows 7
Building applications that are easy to use, visually appealing, and offer high performance is a challenge that developers face every day. Innovative applications can greatly improve the user experience, empowering companies to differentiate their services and solutions. However, developers are increasingly asked to do more in less time, while also optimizing the power and performance requirements of their applications. The Windows 7 platform makes it easy for developers to create engaging, user-friendly applications by providing familiar tools and rich development features that allow them to take advantage of the latest PC capabilities. In this session we will explore the new Taskbar and Jump Lists, the Scenic Ribbon, file management with Libraries, and Windows Web Services among many other enhancements to the new operating system.

TechNet Events Unleashed – Supporting the Backbone of the Industry
Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows 7, and Internet Explorer 8 represent both a wave of change and disruption to IT operations as well as an opportunity for IT professionals to have a big impact on their organizations.

Topic 1: Windows Server 2008 R2 – Optimize Your Time
Get a jump start on your peers with Windows Server 2008 R2 by joining us for this no nonsense technical session, where we will discuss the critical improvements in the next version of Windows Server. Some have argued that, given the impressive scope of new functionality in Windows Server 2008 R2, it should not be an “R2” release, but rather should be given a completely new name. They point to features such as Direct Access, Branch Caching, Live Migration, Powershell 2.0, and VDI that will help you cut down on the amount of time you spend doing mundane tasks, reduce end user frustration and support headaches, and give your mobile workforce a competitive edge through ubiquitous access to company data. There’s a good chance that by attending this session you’ll find a way to save time and money with Windows Server 2008 R2, and so you’ll get the time you spend with us back many times over.

Topic 2: Windows 7 – Maximize Your Potential
In designing Windows 7, the engineering team had a clear focus on what we call ‘the fundamentals': performance, application compatibility, device compatibility, reliability, security and battery life. Early reviews of Windows 7 seem to indicate that the choice to focus on the fundamentals is resonating well with many users and professionals. And, IT professionals will further benefit from the enhancements to manageability and security. You’ll also learn how your investments in testing and evaluating Windows Vista will pay off in the transition to Windows 7. Come see firsthand what all the buzz is about in this demo-intensive session where we explore the UI improvements, performance gains, and manageability enhancements in the next client operating system from Microsoft.

Topic 3: Internet Explorer 8 – Get Excited About the Browser Again
Internet Explorer is currently the most widely used browser in business, and while we’ve seen nice incremental improvements to IE in recent history, we haven’t seen as many truly earth shattering changes. Well, many agree that the next release of IE, Internet Explorer 8, provides the most compelling upgrade to IE in many years. In a typical day, users spend 2 hours or more per day in the browser, so significant improvements here can have tremendous impact on productivity and the way we work. The browser needs to be thought of in the same terms as an operating system—it has to be rich, robust, interoperable, easy to use and secure. Internet Explorer 8 is a browser that meets these needs and more for users, enterprises, IT professionals and developers alike. Come learn how the new improvements, too numerous to mention here, are driving many to get excited about the browser again.

Event Schedule
Here is a quick summary of the events scheduled this spring, starting in late April and concluding in mid-June.

ArcReady MSDN Events Unleashed TechNet Events Unleashed
Waukesha, WI – April 28, 2009 at 9:00am Waukesha, WI – April 28, 2009 at 1:00pm

Waukesha, WI – April 28, 2009 at 3:10pm

Austin, TX – April 28, 2009 at 9:00am

Austin, TX – April 28, 2009 at 1:00pm

Austin, TX – April 28, 2009 at 3:10pm

Bloomington, MN – April 30, 2009 at 9:00am

Bloomington, MN – April 30, 2009 at 1:00pm

Bloomington, MN – April 30, 2009 at 3:10pm

Cleveland, OH – April 30, 2009 at 9:00am

Cleveland, OH – April 30, 2009 at 1:00pm

Cleveland, OH – April 30, 2009 at 3:10pm

Indianapolis, IN – May 4, 2009 at 9:00am

Indianapolis, IN – May 4, 2009 at 1:00pm

Indianapolis, IN – May 4, 2009 at 3:10pm

Chicago, IL – May 5, 2009 at 9:00am

Chicago, IL – May 5, 2009 at 1:00pm

Chicago, IL – May 5, 2009 at 3:10pm

Columbus, OH – May 12, 2009 at 9:00am

Columbus, OH – May 12, 2009 at 1:00pm

Columbus, OH – May 12, 2009 at 3:10pm

Houston, TX – May 12, 2009 at 9:00am

Houston, TX – May 12, 2009 at 1:00pm

Houston, TX – May 12, 2009 at 3:10pm

Mason, OH – May 14, 2009 at 9:00am

Mason, OH – May 14, 2009 at 1:00pm

Mason, OH – May 14, 2009 at 3:10pm

Overland Park, KS – May 14, 2009 at 9:00am

Overland Park, KS – May 14, 2009 at 1:00pm

Overland Park, KS – May 14, 2009 at 3:10pm

Dallas, TX – May 19, 2009 at 9:00am

Dallas, TX – May 19, 2009 at 1:00pm

Dallas, TX – May 19, 2009 at 3:10pm

Southfield, MI – May 20, 2009 at 9:00am

Southfield, MI – May 20, 2009 at 1:00pm

Southfield, MI – May 20, 2009 at 3:10pm

Downers Grove, IL – May 20, 2009 at 9:00am

Downers Grove, IL – May 20, 2009 at 1:00pm

Downers Grove, IL – May 20, 2009 at 3:10pm

St. Louis, MO – May 21, 2009 at 9:00am

St. Louis, MO – May 21, 2009 at 1:00pm

St. Louis, MO – May 21, 2009 at 3:10pm

Nashville, TN – June 11, 2009 at 9:00am

Nashville, TN – June 11, 2009 at 1:00pm

Nashville, TN – June 11, 2009 at 3:10pm

Knoxville, TN – June 12, 2009 at 9:00am

Knoxville, TN – June 12, 2009 at 1:00pm

Knoxville, TN – June 12, 2009 at 3:10pm