Bevy of Microsoft developer conferences planned

SAN FRANCISCO (03/17/2004) - Developers on the Microsoft Corp. platform may be getting an information overload at a group of conferences being held simultaneously in San Francisco next week.

The VSLive conference, for Visual Studio .Net developers, will be held in conjunction with the Mobile Developers Conference mobile development show and the AVIOS SpeechTek Spring conference for development of speech-enabled applications. Three other shows also will be held under the sub-heading of VSLive: Visual Basic Insiders Technical Summit (VBITS), C# Live, for C# developers, and SQL Live, pertaining to the SQL Server database.

A highlight of the conferences will be the introduction of Microsoft Speech Server by company Chairman Bill Gates. Also planned for release at the show is an updated technical preview of the next version of the Visual Studio development tool, Visual Studio 2005, code-named Whidbey.

Speech Server enables the addition of speech capabilities to applications and it also can be used as a call center. Visual Studio 2005, due out next year, is to focus on enhancements in areas such as mobile and Web development.

"Overall, the VSLive conferences are aimed at the enterprise developer," said Jeff Hadfield, vice president of the Windows Publishing Group at Fawcette Technical Publications, which is producing VSLive.

"People coming to the show kind of want to hear about new things, but they're really coming to optimize their existing skills," Hadfield said.

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