We had a lot of exciting activities, events and engagements during the last few months.
And time really passes by when you enjoy yourself doing these kind of things.
Other than the local events (which are lot, considering Microsoft events and User Groups/Community events), we had the MVP Global Summit 2013 in Seattle, WA which was a stunning experience! MVPs had the opportunity to interact not only among themselves (which I think brings a lot of adding value in terms of networking and mingling) but also with the Product Teams, the Teams who actually build and develop Microsoft Products. And that is only the tip of the iceberg, only one of the things you can get from the event itself …
Also, we recently had a refresh of the MVP Award Website, which, IMHO, is the best we ever had. A brand new website with tons of features and content (I love it !)
But, back to the topic:
Congratulations to the newly Awarded Microsoft MVPs (sorted by name), living in Central, Eastern Europe (excluding Russia and CIS Countries) and Italy:
|Bruno Kovačić||Windows Azure||Croatia|
|Danijel Malik||Visual Studio ALM||Slovenia|
|Dávid Fülöp||Visual C#||Hungary|
|Fabio Franzini||SharePoint Server||Italy|
|István Király||Setup & Deployment||Hungary|
|Luchian Grigore||Visual C++||Romania|
|Marek Chmel||SQL Server||Czech Republic|
|Pataridis Panagiotis||Remote Desktop Services||Greece|
|Patrick Lamber||SharePoint Server||Italy|
|Toni Petrina||Visual C#||Croatia|
A BIG CONGRATS to the Microsoft MVPs who have been renewed this Award cycle: the list is long so I apologize in advance if I don’t post the whole list but I still want to congratulate them for their community involvement. Being renewed is as tough as being awarded for the first time and being involved in the online and offline community environments is a challenge.
And for the ones who didn’t make it, don’t lose hope: I’m sure if you put a little extra effort you’ll be able to get the Award again.
Enjoy your Award, hoping this would also be a nice Easter Holiday gift
After Christmas, holidays (for the lucky ones who had them) and the New Year, I really hope you enjoyed them as mush I did.
This post is something a lot of people are waiting for: this is about the new Microsoft MVP Awardees @ the 1st of January.
As you may know, the Microsoft MVP Program is an Award given to exceptional people who voluntarily shared their knowledge on Microsoft products. Whether it’s an online forum or a technical speech, the Microsoft MVPs are independent people who gained the trust of their peers by facts. It’s about communities, it’s about sharing the personal/professional experience they acquired on the field. It’s about giving feedback, providing guidance to their online and offline peers. It’s about sharing.
And every 3 months, we evaluate old and new potential and current MVPs to get the best and brightest and I hope we’re doing a good job !
Finding the right people is the #1 goal and, as said, sometimes it’s not easy. But I can tell you I’m helped by a lot of people in this process. So now please join me in Congratulating the following awarded people as Microsoft MVPs (sorted by name), living in Central, Eastern Europe (excluding Russia and CIS Countries) and Italy:
|Darko Jovišić||Dynamics CRM||Croatia|
|Robert Voncina||SharePoint Server||Slovenia|
|Vlatko Ivanovski||Visual Studio ALM||Macedonia F.Y.R.O|
A BIG CONGRATS to the Microsoft MVPs who have been renewed this Award cycle: the list is long so I apologize in advance if I don’t post the whole list but I still want to congratulate them for their community involvement. Being renewed is as tough as being awarded for the first time and being involved in the online and offline community environments is a challenge. Think about it: do you have time to dedicate to the others? Do you have time to travel to another City or Country to make a speech or participate as an Ask The Expert during a Microsoft and/or a Community event? Do you have time to write articles and technical blog posts? Yes, the list is long and I can go on and on… But the driver is not the MVP Award, the driver is the Passion these people have, Passion to organize User Group events in their spare time, Passion to support users in troubleshooting their technical problems, Passion to write about the products they love more, Passion to share their experience on the field so others can benefit from that. Easy, eh?
And for the ones who didn’t make it, don’t lose hope: I’m sure if you put a little extra effort you’ll be able to get the Award !
Enjoy your Award and Congratulations again !!
If you were there, you know how it was. If you weren’t there for any reason, you can read the full report here…
“Microsoft SharePoint Server is an undeniable market leader and practically a standard when it comes to cooperation as well as managing contents and documents. SharePoint is a platform that connects people, organizations, information and ideas. How widespread and popular SharePoint products are, can also be concluded from the numbers: 80% Fortune 500 companies use SharePoint with a total of 125 million sold licenses. If it were an independent company, SharePoint would still be among the 50 largest in the world.
The other two members of the same group of Microsoft products, Microsoft Project and Microsoft Project Server, do not need a special introduction: they have become synonyms for projects managing tools. The first project managing tools that comes to mind to most professionals is, in fact, Microsoft Project.
After the recent Microsoft’s release of its bets version of the new generation Microsoft SharePoint and Microsoft Office products (which belong to Microsoft Projects), the already big interest for these products has increased even more. For this reason, for the first time in this region, a specialized conference about Microsoft SharePoint and Microsoft Project technologies will be held in Zagreb on 28 November, 2012 under the name SharePoint and Project Conference Adriatics. A total of eighteen lectures will be divided into three parallel tracks: BIZ, DEV and IT Pro.”
Join famous speakers like Michael Noel, Joel Oleson, Agnes Molnar, Wictor Wilén, Zlatan Džinić, internationally acclaimed experts as well as Microsoft’s MVPs from the Region Toni Frankola, Adis Jugo, Nenad Trajkovski, Darko Milevski and others !
Holidays are approaching, slowly , @ least for the lucky ones, and it’s a good exercise, during this period, to look back and see what we as a Program have achieved from a community standpoint. Lots of events in the whole Region I represent (Central, Eastern Europe & Italy, excluding Russia & CIS Countries which are managed by my dear colleague Yulia Belyanina), lots of Product Group Interactions, lots of articles, webcasts, forum posts, blogging, local projects with every single Microsoft Subsidiary: it was definitely tons of things! I’m really happy about the Program, of course, because it changes a bit every year but the nature of it is still intact.
Just an example: we recently announced the new MVP Award Program website, which has been totally rewritten with a Metro-style UI, and the possibilities to do a lot more than the old one.
Back to the Nomination process, and as you may know, we have 4 Nomination Cycles:
- January, 1st
- April, 1st
- July, 1st
- October 1st
This is about the III one, the July Award Cycle. The cycles involves lots of stakeholders and nothing is taken from granted (renewing MVPs knows that very clearly ). The are people from the local Microsoft Subsidiaries, of course us Community Program Managers (aka MVP Leads), the Business Group Leads and the Product Teams.
I cannot stress enough the fact that the Most Valuable Professional is, in fact, an Award. It’s not a certification, it’s not a Partner-affiliation program, it’s an Award. And it is given to the ones who consistently shared their expertise, with their peers, in the online and offline communities. It’s something you gain in the field. And Microsoft, with this Award, wants to THANK these people for their extraordinary community activities, together with a strong competency on a specific area/Product.
With that said, Please WELCOME the new awarded Microsoft MVPs, sorted by Name:
|Jan Matejka||System Center Cloud and Datacenter Management||Czech Republic|
|Kamil Skalski||System Center Cloud and Datacenter Management||Poland|
|Laura La Manna||Visual C#||Italy|
|Lukasz Kaluzny||Virtual Machine||Poland|
|Marius Ene||Directory Services||Romania|
|Tomáš Slavíček||XNA/DirectX||Czech Republic|
A BIG CONGRATS to you guys MVPs and of course to the ones that have been re-Awarded. The MVP Award lasts 12 months and every single candidature is treated carefully and thoroughly so I totally understand the excitement (and sometimes the pain ) to wait for an email saying that you’ve been Awarded again.
There are also people (very few, to be honest) who has not been awarded: as I’m not happy about that, sometimes there are reasons: people changed their jobs, moved to another Country, or for whatever reasons they decided to stop being active in the communities or they’ve not been active enough to be re-awarded. I always tell them that they can keep me as their primary point of contact for contacting Microsoft moving forward: and you never know, one can be out of the Program for a while and then back after a few months so, as I always say, don’t lose faith . We also launched an initiative to keep in touch with both, MVPs former MVPs through a LinkedIn Group (membership is limited to active and retired MVPs) http://ow.ly/bKmIC which, IMHO, is a good way not to lose contact with the MVP community as a whole.
If you’re on Twitter, feel free to follow @MVPAward , myself and the #mvpbuzz hashtag: you’ll be amazed to see a great MVP community sharing a lot of real-life stories (covering different Microsoft products and technologies) that may also comes at hand when you’re in trouble
That said, Enjoy your Award and Congratulations !
When I was @ the Microsoft Technology Summit in Poland few weeks ago I had the pleasure to talk with a lot of MVPs @ the Community Booth that had been set up for the event. BTW, that was a HUGE event with, I presume, almost 2.500 attendees. As you can imagine, it’s the biggest annual Microsoft event in Warsaw and, from what I’ve seen, it was a real success.
Well, during these conversations a lot of interesting things normally come up. One of those was regarding the VirtualStudy.pl (not to mention all the other communities like WSS.pl, codeguru.pl and a lot more).
Thanks to the hard of the community members, VirtualStudy.pl now has a full support of English language, an English forum and even a few videos in English available as VOD.
At the same time the board is now looking for presenters who would like to prepare and present sessions in English (possibly with good presentation skills).
VirtualStudy.pl was created to allow users to attend online meetings and learn free of charge. Since the beginning they had quite a few interesting courses like Windows Server, SharePoint 2010 Training, SQLServer 2008, Windows Phone 7 programing, as well as 6 month C# training course which finished with an exam and certificates) where the average number of attendees was around 200-300 people.
Currently VirtualStudy.pl hosts all the previous sessions on a on-Demand basis (few hundred sessions are already available to watch).
These online sessions do not contain any marketing content, but it’s pure technical Microsoft knowledge.
And at the moment they are currently organize their first VirtualStudy.pl Conference 2011.
So this is a call to action for anyone with technical skills on Microsoft Technologies who wants to deliver English presentation.
And, just to close the topic that I started at the very beginning, these are some pictures from the MTS:
And this is me, powered by a customized Chrome-Joke T-shirt (), when I just got a nice & unexpected gift:
Thank you for the wonderful time guys: I’ll see you next time in Warsaw (or even before, @ the MVP Global Summit !!)
I had some great holidays during this summer, up in the mountains.
And I deliberately chose not to bring my laptop with me so not to be tempted to work. Anyway I used my Windows Phone to check my emails: not on a regular basis but at least to check the most important stuff that was going on. I wanted to take out job stuff from my vacations but I couldn’t resist. Every year I bring my laptop with me mostly for the candidates’ reviews (to see if everything was working the way I was expecting to).
So that was my first lesson: never leave my laptop @ home.
Because after I came back, I switched it on only to realize that the hard disk was broken. Oh my, I was so disappointed, especially because I was not so sure that I backed everything up.
With all the cloud services we now have at our disposal, none of them had all the stuff (at least the recent one) I was supposed to reinstall on my laptop. Fortunately, I made a backup on May, 2011 on my external hard disk so not everything was lost. Also, SkyDrive and Windows Live Mesh did help me in recovering some of the most important files I had.
Having said that, it was not over…
I ordered a new hard disk from HP (thanks to the local IT for the big help!) but it took about a week to have it. In the meantime, my smartcard was not working. Bummer !
As you may know, in order to have Direct Access on Windows 7 working, you have to use BitLocker and then use your smartcard to enable the corpnet access.
So I was lost…
Not to mention I got flu that took me @ home for almost a week.
So I went to the local IT and ordered a new one but it takes some time.
Long story short: I have my laptop (which is great), I recovered most of the files (even better) but I still need my smartcard. Well, close enough, I’m @ 80% I’d say…
Back to us,
during the hiking time back to the mountains I had some time to think about all the activities and top stories and the great collaborations with all the Countries I have the pleasure to represent as the Community Program Manager for the MVP Award Program. I guess everyone does that: when you have time and you’re relaxed, it’s much easier to build your last year’s history. Even better, you have a lot of creativity and lots of ideas that you want to put into action.
So, apart from being stuck right after my holidays, I’m SO READY to start the new (fiscal) year!
And you know what? There are a lot of things happening and planned to happen in the next 90 days. Lots of events, lots of engagements and of course the Microsoft and the 3rd party forums are still running and they get healthier.
You know I’m addicted to the social media and, to me, it’s the best way to monitor what is going on in the communities. As I represent 20 Countries, it’s not that easy to track everything you want to but at least you got what I need.
Also, I found a new way to use my Windows Phone more effectively: basically I created groups in which there are people (aka Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn accounts) that I want to monitor. In that way, and when you don’t have much time to use a PC client, I was able to get the most important things, at least important for me and the Communities.
So from an offline perspective, here is what is going to happen in the next 90 days (again, this is not a comprehensive list):
Mobility Day – Zagreb, Croatia (September 21st)
SQL TUNEIN – Zagreb, Croatia (September 26, 27)
Bleeding Edge 2011 – Gozd Martuljek, Slovenia (September 29th, 30th)
DevReach – Sofia, Bulgaria (October17-18)
Microsoft TechDay 2011 Baltic Region (October 18th till 20th)
Estonian page contains links to TechDay Lithuania & TechDay Latvia as well
Microsoft Technology Summit – Warsaw, Poland (October 18-19)
Sinergija – Belgrade, Serbia (October 18-20th)
Microsoft Vizija – Skopje Macedonia F.Y.R.O. (October 20-21)
Virtualization Conference 2011 – Milan, Italy (November, 16-17)
Windows Professional Conference – Milan, Italy (November 22-24)
Microsoft Fest 2011 – Prague, Czech Republic (November 26-27)
ITPro-Dev Connections 2011 – Athens, Greece (November 26-27)
As you can see many events (or I should say at least some of the most important ones) are happening in the Region, with a strong Microsoft MVP participation, whether the MVPs will be speakers or Ask The Expert. These are events that are community-driven and/or Microsoft-driven with the help of the Communities and I guess it’s a great opportunity for all the community members to stop by to some of these events and have a chance to talk with them about Microsoft technology.
And bear with me if I missed some events: feel free to comment on this post and let me know (I’m still digging around to see what’s going to happen and also starting to have conference calls and Live Meetings with my colleagues in the Region but of course it takes time so any help would be much appreciated!)
Of course I didn’t forget about the MVP candidates’ review, which is, as a matter of fact, the first thing I want & need to make sure it’s okay. So expect a blog post, as always, the 1st of October, late in the day, to see new names/new faces and great community contributors being awarded as part of this exciting community which is the MVP Award Program.
So, putting aside all the issues I had after my holidays’ return, I’m VERY VERY excited to start a new year with a lot of activities being so confident that the communities and the Microsoft MVPs will have a big part on the new wave of Microsoft Products and a strong impact on the future of Microsoft Technologies moving forward.
And you know what? I want to be part of it too !!
It’s a big 2 days timeframe for developers and ITPros in CEE.
Featuring International speakers, this event, which will be hold in the forth most populous city in Romania (Cluj-Napoca), will see 10 Microsoft MVPs, all of them with different technical backgrounds and from different parts of Europe (you can add their personal Twitter/LinkedIn/RSS from the speakers’ list).
You may want to know what the topics are…well, from their own voice:
“We will be discussing general interest topics such as Private Cloud, security, Windows Azure, RIA using MVC and Ajax, System Center, SQL Server, Dependency Injection in ASP.NET MVC 3, Exchange High Availability, ASP.NET and PHP apps on IIS, Workflow Services in Windows Azure, SharePoint Server support for ISO and COBIT certifications, Link, WCF and REST in the Cloud and more”. So a lot will be covered !
Link to: IT Camp 2011
Everytime is a challenge, everytime is a “working hard” to make sure all the valuable members of the Communities are Awarded. It’s a process that never ends…
And it’s not that easy, monitoring all the Communities in CEE & Italy (the Region I represent, excluding Russia & CIS Countries), and find the “best of the best” inside those entities.
But I’m helped, of course: thanks to the continuous commitment of the Microsoft local Subsidiaries, and the help of the MVPs themselves, we get new outstanding nominations throughout the Region every Quarter.
So what can I say, apart from CONGRATULATING the new and re-awarded MVPs?
I never experienced that but, if I would be a technical expert in the IT Industry, getting the MVP Award e-mail should be really satisfying, from a personal and professional standpoint.
I always feel the excitement from the new MVPs, but also from the ones who are renewed, it’s still a very emotional part of their jobs and careers.
And this is thanks to what you do, on a voluntarily basis, that makes you a Microsoft MVP, even if you are not “MVP-branded” yet . Doing communities activities, being available to the local subsidiaries when it comes to do technical presentations or articles or whatever it is, you’re part of the Community Ecosystem as an “Influencer”. People listen to you, listen to your advice, and take actions on your technical feedback. And this is definitely TRUST, something you gain year over year with your continuous effort in helping the communities grow from a technical perspective. So this is just to say THANK YOU, again, for what you do.
Back to the April Award Cycle, I’m very happy to announce the new MVPs (sorted by name):
|Alberto Ferrari||Italy||SQL Server|
|Anton Staykov||Bulgaria||Windows Azure|
|Bahrudin Hrnjica||Bosnia-Herzegovina||Visual C#|
|Daniel Stefaniak||Poland||Management Infrastructure|
|Dimitris Papadimitriou||Greece||Connected System Developer|
|Francesco Sodano||Italy||SharePoint Server|
|Igor Pavlekovic||Croatia||Exchange Server|
|Jevgeni Tsaikin||Estonia||Device Application Development|
|Marcin Dembowski||Poland||Internet Explorer|
|Marcin Iwanowski||Poland||Expression Blend|
|Mirko Mainetti||Italy||Dynamics NAV|
|Toomas Ruus||Estonia||Exchange Server|
(as soon as you’ll publish the news on your blogs and/or on your MVP Profiles, I will add the links to your name so anyone can see who you are ).
I won’t put the list of all the re-awarded MVPs as it’s very long but, if you ask me to do it, I’ll do it !
Of course we had some declined MVPs. And this is natural: sometimes people don’t have time to dedicate to the communities anymore, some others changed jobs so this make it difficult for them to be active again: any other reason in between I don’t want to lose connections with these guys because I’m sure, sooner or later, they’ll come back again !
That said, Enjoy your Award and talk to you soon !
I didn’t have much time to review and update my blog but, as I’m here in a Starbucks in downtown Seattle waiting to get a bus to the new destination, I thought it was worthy to write down some notes.
The MVP Global Summit (#mvp11) has been a great experience to me, to my colleagues and, to my knowledge, to the MVPs. It’s always amazing to get together in this place, far far away from our hometown. It’s about building relationships, interacting with the Product Teams, engage on with new opportunities and of course having a great time during the evenings. Great technical sessions, an amazing event organization, the Safeco Field Party, the Product Group dinners, I think almost everything was perfect. Of course there’s room to grow and of course some of you may not have been that satisfied with a particular session. But it’s not that easy to accomodate all of you, because of the different backgrounds and skills you may have.
Personally, I’m very happy with the whole event. Every year is better and better.
I had almost 100 MVPs coming from the Region I represent which is huge and my only regret is that I didn’t have the chance to talk with all of you guys. I just wanted to talk with all you but I just couldn’t ! At least I met almost all of you which is good.
Time flies and now you’re probably headed back home. I hope you’re taking with you great memories to tell your friends and families..
I’ll see you soon !
Following the great success of the last year’s event,
Croatian WinDays strikes back with a new 2011 promising event !
" There is no better place to search for new and different ideas than the leading business and technology conference in Croatia – Microsoft WinDays11!”
The Conference will be held in Rovinj, Croatia and it will be split in two conferences:
WinDays11 Microsoft Technology Conference 4 – 7 April, 2011
WinDays11 Business Conference 7 – 8 April, 2011
“Whether you’re an IT professional, company director, an expert in sales, marketing or business development, you can always happen to run out of new ideas. We are all here to help: a great source of ideas runs dry, and it is necessary to look for inspiration. There is no better way to do this than to surround yourself with people who, like you, live and profit from new ideas and their implementation, which is even better, ideas really begin to live only when you share it with others.”
Featuring MVPs Ilija Brajkovic, Marin Franković, Damir Dizdarevic, Robert Petrunic, Domagoj Pavlesic, Dobriša Adamec, Vibor Cipan and I’m sure many more, covering lots of Microsoft technologies (as you can also see by the picture above): from Lync Server to Windows Phone 7, from Silverlight to IE9 and Office 365 just to name a few…
Feel free to follow the upcoming news and see you in Rovinj!
Yes, I know not all of us speak Hungarian (to me it’s a very difficult language ) but I thought it was worth mentioning. MVP Zoltan Arvai @zoltanarvai & Istvan Novak, together with Peter Csala, Gergo Attila Far, Istvan Reiter and Laszlo Toth wrote this e-book that introduces the developers to the World of Silverlight, from the beginning to LOB application development.
Here is the chapter’s list:
- Silverlight and XAML basics
- Layout Management
- Basic Controls
- Animation and Media
- Styles and Templates
- Working with Data
- Creating Custom Controls
- Important features in Silverlight 4.0
- Business Application Development with Silverlight
- Complex data handling and presentation
- Building modular applications
The first part of the book helps developers to quickly get up to speed with the Silverlight platform. (platform + RIA Services basics) The last 3 chapters of the book shows how to actually use the platform to build high quality business applications (MVVM, UnitTesting, MEF, Prism, Silverlight Toolkit, etc…)
Of course, if you want to translate it and share it in other languages, I’m sure the writers will be more than happy to help you out !