MIX '11 — Day 2

Today was the second day of the conference: Keynotes, sessions and the attendee party.

Keynote the Second

Windows Phone 7, Silverlight and Kinect were the topics of today's keynote. As far as WP7 goes, there was talk of the NoDo update, WP7 getting IE 9 and the upcoming "mango" update. Ars Technica has a good write up. One thing to note, they couldn't resist pitting an iPhone and a Nexus S against some dev WP7 phone in the speed reading demo. You know the deal: blah blah blah contrived, blah blah blah childish, blah blah blah we'll see if anybody cares when it ships. At least they didn't dwell on it the way they did with IE9 benchmarks yesterday.

... and then some guys came out and talked about Silverlight and Kinect and I didn't care (but at least no one talked about SharePoint). Oh yeah, and we got free Kinects. Yay, I guess.

Douglas Crockford on ECMAScript 5

It was great to see Crockford talk given that he has had a such profound impact on the way that I, personally, write JS as well as having a huge impact on the evolution of the language (he's on the ECMAScript committee). He talked about the approach the committee took to ECMAScript:

  • No new syntax.
  • Library improvements.
  • Not trying to save stupid people from themselves (It's too hard).
  • Strict mode.

He also made some interesting offhand remarks:

  • Something to the effect of "If IE6 is still relevant when the ES6 standard is published then we're doomed."
  • Something about the W3C being really hard to work with (... which given the whole WHATWG thing isn't all that surprising).


Knockout.js is a JavaScript library for binding data models to UI elements. It looks kind of cool.

Building Data-centric N-tier Applications with jQuery

The title kind of gives away that this was a complete snoozefest, but the slot really sucked and there wasn't anything interesting to go to.


Script# is a library/complier that lets you write your JavaScript in C#. "Why do you want to write your JavaScript in C#?" you might ask. I don't know... this feels like yet another attempt to fix JavaScript by someone that doesn't get that JavaScript is actually a pretty good language.

  • Closure tools is a much more straight-forward approach to error checking and optimizing your hand written JS.
  • Coffee Script at least gives you very concise closures and list comprehensions while still letting you interact with JS libraries directly.
  • GWT has the same kind of "let's fix JavaScript by not using it" vibe, but at least lots of people are using it and it's old enough that the whole "JavaScript is actually kind of good" idea hadn't caught on yet when it got-going.

Phil Haack on ASP.NET MVC 3

Phil demoed Entity Framework code-first, Razor, scaffolding and NuGet. Suspiciously similar to Hanselman's demo from yesterday, but maybe a little deeper. Razor is definitely cool, but see my comments from yesterday a long the lines of "Yeah that's cool, but tell me again why I'm not just using django/Rails?"

Evening Session

  • Went to a buffet, which is a thing I guess. Not as delicious as steak.
  • I went to the attendee party. Free beer at some nightclub, plus some Zettai Ryouiki dancers which was kind of surprising. Yeah this is Vegas, but the highly sexualized atmosphere weirded me out a little.