Microsoft Ignite Day Two

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Another day of the Microsoft Ignite conference has passed. I felt more productive this day than I had during the first day. But, there have been bumps along the way.

I attended various sessions with topics ranging from Identity/Security to simple Angular/SPA apps to Microsoft’s new Threat Analysis tools.

Of the sessions I attended, the Identity/Security session was the most valuable. It focused on Azure AD integration with ASP.NET applications without focusing so much on the Azure set-up. I did learn that Azure’s security mechanisms are primarily using OAuth2 / OAuth Connect. This was reassuring to me as almost all of the information presented mirrored the SSO/OAuth Security Server and Resource Management Server that I recently implemented. The benefit I received was primarily in validating my own work. Others who are not familiar with OAuth/OWIN/etc probably got even more out of this session. I did like the concept of Azure AD being used for moving AD to the cloud and getting away from managing AD integration directly (through LDAP calls or whatever). Getting companies to move more to cloud rather than hosting these sort of things in their own data centers is another story entirely.

Another session that I attended discussed Microsoft’s Threat Analysis tool. Let me get this out of the way. From a developer perspective, the sessions were lacking. The first 15+ minutes of this session, for example, was filled with nothing more than marketing.

I don’t want to go off on a tangent/rant, but that does seem to be a recurring theme with many of the sessions at Ignite. Many of the presenters seem to be filling the role of professional marketers rather than providing a focus on developer oriented content and needs. This is unfortunate. Ignite replaced Tech Ed, and Tech Ed had many developer tracks to give a focus on the information that developers want and need. So far, I feel starved for any true, useful information in that regard. I cannot pinpoint any single piece of technology discussed that I could take back to my organization and implement once back in the office.

As an example, I “attended” one session that was supposed to be on Angular and Node. When the speaker started explaining what a “SPA” is, I rolled my eyes a bit. The sessions need more “meat.” My expectations were a bit higher than an introduction. Other developers at this conference are apparently starved for developer focused sessions as well considering that this session wound up overflowing. I had to watch the session on the floor of the expo on a smallish TV with 200+ other people. This was a distraction and it really makes me question whether Microsoft really expected developers to be at this conference.

At the end of the day, the story here can’t just be about Microsoft’s vision. It needs to incorporate the audience’s vision and provide them with what they need to get stuff done in their daily work. I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s sessions, but do hope that they provide more substantive information.

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