If you're not familiar with the concept, a Birds-of-a-Feather (BOF) session is an open discussion lead by a moderator who is not a Microsoft employee. The sessions are not presentations, there are no projectors. Unlike the Keynotes and Breakout sessions which are mostly one to many communication, Birds-of-a-Feather sessions are many to many communication and don't necessarily focus on Microsoft products or technology. They are about people talking with people - connecting, sharing, networking, and creating community.
This year I'd like to do a BOF session at TechEd Developer. From my expereince with the community at user groups and conferences it's pretty clear that there are lots of developers who still work with classic VB code at least part of the time. Many are still questioning what to do with this legacy code and how to move it forward or integrate it with .NET. So I've proposed the following:
Strategies for Moving Your Microsoft Visual Basic 6 Investments to .NET: For years Visual Basic 6 (VB 6) was used by organizations world-wide to build key line-of-business applications and components. Now they have thousands to millions of lines of code representing a significant organizational investment. Many have struggled in the past trying to move this legacy code base to .NET, many are just starting that journey. The path from VB 6 to .NET has not always been clear - there are options but there is no one size fits all approach. One option is to rewrite your applications so you can re-architect and take advantage of all the features .NET has to offer. Another is to migrate the applications so automated tools like the Code Advisor and the Migration Wizard can assist you. Finally, you can use COM Interop and the Interop Forms Toolkit to continue leveraging existing working assets while phasing in new features built on the .NET Framework. In this session we will discuss all three options and explore the pros and cons of each. The goal is raise awareness of the choices and the tools available so you will be able to pick the best strategy for your organization going forward.
So, if you're going to TechEd and you'd like to join in on the discussion, please head on over to the BOF voting page and add your vote. Voting closes on April 7.
The BOF was selected. It's running on Wednesday, June 4 from 8:30 to 9:45 AM. I think to room is S330 EF but I'm not positive. If you're planning on attending please let me know the subject(s) you'd like to discuss by adding a comment.
Update (April 28, 2008):
The BOF was selected. It's BOF806 and is running Thursday, June 5 from 1:00 to 2:15 pm. If you're planning on attending please let me know the subject(s) you'd like to discuss by adding a comment.
See you then.