My 3rd year as a Microsoft MVP in Retrospective

Today is the day. Everybody who is a part of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) program and has re-applied for the next period got informed today. I am really happy to announce that I have been reawarded and my fourth MVP year starts today.

Its time to look back!

If you don’t know what the MVP Award Program is: The MVP award is an award that Microsoft hands out to community leaders. If you apply for the award, you need to submit all your community activities over a period of 12 months. A community activity is in general something that you did to spread your knowledge or help others advance in technology without taking money for it. Typical activities are organizing meetups, speaking at user groups and conferences, mentoring, writing books and articles, contributing to open source projects or giving feedback to the Microsoft product groups.

As usual, my MVP year started on the first of July. My first MVP activity was organizing a meetup of the Azure Zurich User Group that took place on July 3rd. Dave Kurth spoke about Security being an integral component of the Azure Cloud and Tobias Triebe introduced us to the Microsoft Business Application Platform and its poster child PowerApps:

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Microsoft-Azure-Zurich-User-Group/events/246304097/

After a couple of weeks of summer holidays, it was time for our August meetup all about the Azure Blockchain. Stefano Tempesta spoke about the current state of Blockchain in the world and Michele Tedesco & Henri Dethier introduced us to the Azure Blockchain Workbench.

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Microsoft-Azure-Zurich-User-Group/events/246304156/

The first major conference was BASTA 2018 in Mainz, Germany. Together with Thomas Gassmann, I spoke about how easy it has become to enter the world of web development nowadays because the technology stacks .NET WPF and Angular have moved closer together. Most of the concepts, such as Databinding or Commands can be applied to both stacks. With the advent of TypeScript, a strongly typed programming language that is transpiled to JavaScript, the move from the desktop to the browser has become easier than ever.

In September, we delivered the same talk to our colleagues at Trivadis at the Trivadis TechEvent:

In addition the talk at TechEvent, we (that is Fabian Gosebrink, Thomas Gassmann and myself) organized the first event of our newly founded meetup SwissAngular.

We had Thomas speaking about Angular Elements and Fabian speaking about Cross-Platform development with Cordova, Electron and Angular.

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Swiss-Angular/events/253655405/

In October, I joined my fellow MVPs Fabian Gosebrink and Mark Allibone and we organized the Swiss edition of .NETConf. A worldwide online conference with local events all around the world:

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Microsoft-Azure-Zurich-User-Group/events/254018514/

Our speaker friends provided 4 interesting talks:

  • Adam Ralph: Getting the first PR into .NET and other tales from an OSS contributor
  • Filip Wojcieszyn: Authentication & Authorization for HTTP APIs in ASP.NET Core
  • Daniel Marbach: Do it yourself. An Async Message Pump that kicks Ass”
  • Marc Müller: Docker for ASP.NET Core

In November, I followed a call from our MVP Program Manager Alice Piras who was looking for speakers for the AI Hackathon at the Peoples University of Moscow (RUDN). I said yes and (remotely) spoke to students in the cafeteria of the university about what they can build using Microsoft Cognitive Services:

In October it was time for our annual Machine Learning night at Azure Zurich. Sebastiano Galazzo spoke about “Getting started with ML” and Christian Hidber introduced us to the idea of Reinforcement Learning.

At the end of November, I had the pleasure to speak at DDC, the DotNET Developer Conference in Cologne about Cognitive Services again. This time it was a night school that we filled on short notice. We had a blast!


To close the year, I wanted to to a special event at Azure Zurich. Since Microsoft announced that they are going to open Azure Datacenters in Switzerland in 2019, I decided to host an Ask-me-Anything session with a panel of Azure Experts. I invited Stefano Malle, Dominik Zemp, Alexandre Gattiker, Marcel Zehner and Laurent Bugnion onto the stage where they had to answer questions on the fly. I was joined by many other MVPs and our Program Manager Alice Piras. A great event to end the year.

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Microsoft-Azure-Zurich-User-Group/events/246304248/

Right before the Christmas Holiday started, I met up with Fabian Gosebrink and we decided to start organizing .NET Day Switzerland for 2019. More about that later.

In January, Thomas Gassmann and I decided to speak about our experience in a customer project. This was the birth hour of our session on how to beat the monolith into the world of the web. We presented it for the first time at Code Days in Munich:

In February I had the chance to organize an Azure Zurich User Group meetup at the premises of a customer of mine, Helsana. We delivered two sessions about the journey the had into the Azure Cloud and about how it has transformed their business.

In March 2019, an MVP highlight was approaching. The MVP Global Summit where all the MVPs from all around the world meet on the Microsoft Campus in Redmond. I really had a great time meeting all the old and new friends!

The next conference on the horizon was Microsoft TechSummit 2019. I spoke again with the Gäss about entering the world of AI with Microsoft Cognitive Services. This time, a respectable crowd showed up.

By the end of April, it was time for GLOBAL AZURE BOOTCAMP. I joined with my fellow MVPs from Expertslive Cafe Switzerland, Stefan Roth and Stefan Johner and we organized the GABC Switzerland in Cooperation with Digicomp. It was the largest GABC Switzerland ever with over 300 participants. We could for sure feel the Azure Cloud buzz in Switzerland. Check it out here:

https://www.zurich.azurebootcamp.net/

About a month later, by the end of May 2019, it was time for the big show. Time for .NET Day Switzerland. Fabian and myself gave it all we got and rented an entire movie theatre for the show. We engaged 22 international speakers and welcomed 300 attendees to the event:

https://dotnetday.ch/

After .NET Day Switzerland it was time for another Azure Zurich meetup. On June 11, we had Oliver Dörr and Stefano Malle speaking about Azure Information Protection (AIP) and how to automate your enterprise IT on the Azure Platform.

https://www.meetup.com/de-DE/Microsoft-Azure-Zurich-User-Group/events/256279273/

On June 20th, I spoke at Expertslive Switzerland, a community conference about Cognitive Services once more.

The final conference of the MVP year was Developer Week in Nuremberg, Germany. We delivered the Monolith session again and got very good feedback from the crowd.

In addition, I delivered a session about Applcation Insights:

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everybody who supported all of my MVP endeavors. THANK YOU. I am looking forward to another exciting year! #MVPBuzz