This week I attended the Architect Insight Conference in the UK. The conference is for leading software architects to share the latest implementation strategies.
I was exhibiting my Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio(MSRDS) work accompanied by Lib-b and A1-DW. My goal was to talk about the software services approach used by MSRDS and the core technology - Concurrency and Coordination runtime (CCR) as this has huge potential way beyond 'robotic' applications.
I had many really interesting discussions about the technology and about the home technology projects some of the delegates were working on. These ranged from remote holiday home heating control to the automated control of model steam locomotives (real steam locomotives despite being models!). They even included the automation of a discarded golf cart by one delegates teenage son :-)
All superb stories and right on target for my enthusiast activities. I was happy to help some of these projects on with my own experiences and to learn about delegates own experiences. One thing is clear: the Windows operating system coupled with MSRDS and broadband services provides a complete infrastructure for such applications, allowing the project developer to focus on the unique aspects of their project. It was also clear that much work was saved by the availability of project source code on the Codeplex site - Microsoft's shared software source repository.
All in, project developers found that they really didn't have to do very much development work to achieve their automation goals because of the wealth of features and functionality already available to them in the Microsoft platform.
That's something I have always maintained but it is extra special to hear it told by none Microsoft people :-)
I'll publish more details of some of the delegates projects in later blog posts - but for now it is off to the Manchester MSDN Roadshow. See you there!