Fixing WinHEC – Part 2

  In my last posting, I presented how to fix WinHEC from the attendee’s point of view.  This post will look at why it is critical for Microsoft to get it right.  For the last 10 years, the Windows group has been waging a war to improve driver quality.  In that time, many great tools and initiatives have aided the development of better drivers.   But there are still a lot missing items, and unfortunately, Redmond seems disconnected from some of the problems of the driver community.   Yes, a number of us try to call this out, but even the most … Continue reading Fixing WinHEC – Part 2

Fixing WinHEC

As anyone who has been to WinHEC over the years knows, its content swings between being a heavy technical conference and being a marketing conference.   This year’s WinHEC is scheduled for November 4-7, 2008, again in Los Angeles, California.  I do not expect much from this venue, since neither of the two WinHEC’s previously in LA had a strong technical presence.   Going to LA requires putting engineers on airplanes and into hotel rooms and not just for a few hours in a Seattle conference center.      So what makes a great techie WinHEC?    1.      Lots of technical presentations – Some of … Continue reading Fixing WinHEC

Improving the documentation

 If you haven’t heard, Microsoft is now updating the WDK documentation monthly and is now providing a way to download these updated docs to your computer.  This update, just for documentation, can be found at   Microsoft should be congratulated for this effort to improve the documentation in a timely manner.  Currently there are some flaws to be aware of.  First the install process does not take into account that many of us would just like to update the documentation we got with the WDK with the new docs.  In fact, the installer does not even know about the WDK … Continue reading Improving the documentation

Document explorer versus useful data

There is a trend in the tools coming out of Microsoft that is driving me nuts and in my opinion significantly hurting productivity.  This trend is the shrinking of the amount of data that appears on the display and requiring more mouse clicks to get there. For driver writers this trend is most obvious in Document Explorer 8 which is used to display the Vista WDK documentation.   Comparing it to HTML Help Control 5 that was used for Windows Server 2003 SP1 DDK the previous version will show you what I mean.  On opening the DDK documentation you have two … Continue reading Document explorer versus useful data

Bleeding edge and far from it

I am just back from WinHEC and while there I realized that many people including a number from Microsoft don’t distinguish developing for the leading edge from living there. I am known as a guy who has done a number of things that Redmond had said “Windows is not capable of doing” and technologies that Microsoft was later proud to show off once they were working.  When it comes to my tools, I am far from the bleeding edge.  For instance, though I recently started using the latest Visual Studio, most of my work is still done with VS6.   I … Continue reading Bleeding edge and far from it

Tuning Channel 9

Last week I got an announcement that Rob Short is talking on Operating System Evolution (see  Normally, I would be the first in line for one of his talks, but on Channel 9?… well, maybe some day I’ll watch it when I have time.   For those of you who don’t know about Channel 9 , it is a site where Microsoft provides video interviews on technical subjects.   The reason that I’m not enthusiastic about it is that I believe there are a couple of serious problems with Channel 9.  These are: 1. There is no index I answer … Continue reading Tuning Channel 9