Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 11) – The One About What’s New, Shuttles, Networking, Meals, and More

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Talk about an informational filled episode this week. Grab a comfortable seat and get ready to listen to this week’s Episode 11 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, with Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) who have lots to say and share. This is a long show but worth the time, with coverage on remote badge pickup, Ignite 101 session, shuttle bus schedules, meal menus, Ignite stickers, Women In Technology, and more.

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

Here are the highlights and info from the show:

Remote Badge Pickup:
This has been covered in Episode 8 of the Countdown Show, so check it out for more details. Remote badge pickup will conveniently be available starting on Saturday, May 2nd at Chicago O’Hare Airport at terminals 1 & 3, as well as various conference hotels in the city. Check in early and avoid the lines. Plus use your badge to gain great discounts at participating businesses and attractions in Chicago.

Ignite 101: Sunday, May 3 at 9:00AM and 1:00PM:
Whether you’re a seasoned attendee or new to the Microsoft conference scene, Ignite 101 is a great session to attend to get the lay of the land, conference info, convention center details, and other very helpful tips and info. Join Rick and Joey on Sunday, May 3rd at 9:00AM or 1:00PM for a fun “college orientation” style session. Don’t forget to add this session via MyIgnite.

Hotel Shuttle Service:
Shuttle bus service has been a hot topic among attendees on the forums and various social media channels. The shuttle schedules have been updated on the Microsoft Ignite Agenda, and listed below.

Sunday, May 3
7:00 AM–10:30 AM. Shuttles from hotels to McCormick Place South Hall.
2:30 PM–5:30 PM Shuttles from McCormick Place South Hall to hotels.

Monday, May 4
6:30 AM–10:30 AM Shuttles from hotels to McCormick Place South Hall.
6:00 PM–8:30 PM Shuttles from McCormick Place South Hall to hotels.

Tuesday, May 5
7:00 AM–10:30 AM Shuttles from hotels to McCormick Place South Hall.
3:45 PM–6:45 PM Shuttles from McCormick Place South Hall to hotels.

Wednesday, May 6
7:00 AM–10:30 AM Shuttles from hotels to McCormick Place South Hall.
3:45 PM–6:45 PM Shuttles from McCormick Place South Hall to hotels.

Thursday, May 7
7:00 AM–10:30 AM Shuttles from hotels to McCormick Place South Hall.
Evening shuttle service will be provided. Specific times to come soon.
Did you catch the teaser in the video? 🙂

Friday, May 8
7:30 AM–2:00 PM Continuous shuttles between hotels and McCormick Place South Hall.
Baggage check service will be available at McCormick Place on Friday.

If you require transportation between your hotel and the convention center at other times outside of the shuttle service schedules, it is best that you use the train, as it is fast and convenient. The CTA website has all the information for your transportation needs in Chicago.

The next couple of items relates to networking opportunities during the conference. Networking is one of the most important aspects of attending a conference, as well as attending sessions to learn from industry experts on current and future technologies. During Ignite, one can take advantage of several networking opportunities to create contacts and build a professional support system. Microsoft Ignite has included two new networking events to assist attendees with these endeavours, which are Ignite After Hours and Mealtime Mashups with details below.

Ignite After Hours:
Tuesday through Thursday, 8:00 PM–11:00 PM.
Some select conference hotels will host After Hours gatherings offering some exclusively created drinks and food especially for Ignite. These venues also offer a comfortable, casual, and beautiful environment to help meet people, mingle, enjoy great conversations, and indulge in the special food and drinks. More details will be available in your OneNote Guide for locations.

Mealtime Mashups:
Tuesday through Thursday, 11:30 AM–2:30 PM.
Lunch time is a perfect time to meet new people, start conversations, create some valuable contacts, and even catch up with old friends. On the following days listed below, tables will be assigned according to region, industry, and product. So, grab your lunch and a seat at one of the assigned tables in the Meal Hall and join the discussions with fellow attendees.
• Tuesday: Region
• Wednesday: Industry
• Thursday: Product

Attendee Meal Menus – Bon Appetite!
Meals served at conferences often generate buzz among attendees, sometimes positive and sometimes on the negative side. For the first time in the history of Microsoft conferences, meal menus are being disclosed and shared with everyone in advance. Attendees will have some great choices from hot and cold buffets to Grab & Go lunches. I love the Grab & Go lunch concept as it will help increase more networking opportunities and the convenience of eating anywhere and have conversations.
Check out the menu for the week:

Sunday, May 3
Continental Breakfast Buffet, featuring:
• Assorted Freshly Baked Breakfast Breads, Muffins, Scones and Croissants with Sweet Butter and Preserves
• Seasonal Whole Fruit
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Hot Lunch Buffet, featuring:
• Assortment of La Brea Breads with Sea Salt Butter
• Classic Bibb Salad with Bibb Lettuce Mix, Apple Wood Smoked Bacon, Tomato, Avocado, Green Goddess Dressing
• Caramelized Cauliflower Medallions with Roasted Red Peppers and Onions, Red Lentils, Baby Spinach, Sherry Vinegar, Olive Oil
• Pan Seared Salmon Cakes with Dijon Mustard Aioli and Watercress
• Roasted Chicken Breast with Lemon-Caper Beurre Blanc
• Warm Orzo Pasta with Spring Pea and Mushroom
• Chocolate Cupcakes and Lemon-Raspberry Bars
• Sodas, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Monday, May 4
Hot Breakfast Buffet, featuring:
• Blueberry Muffins, Glazed Cinnamon Roll and Lemon Poppy Seed Bread with Whipped Butter and Fruit Preserves
• Bananas, Apples and Oranges
• Assorted Individual Greek and Regular Yogurts
• Scrambled Eggs
• Apple Wood Smoked Bacon
• Roasted Breakfast Potatoes
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Grab & Go Lunch, featuring:
• Pesto Pasta Salad with Diced Red Pepper
• Petite Wisconsin Cheddar and Roasted Tomato Pies
Choice of:
• Lemon-Thyme Rubbed Chicken Breast Sandwich with Salsa Verde Aioli and Watercress on Grilled Focaccia
• Rosemary Grilled Tri-Tip Steak with Horseradish Mayo and Red Onion Confit on a Tuscan Roll
• Roasted Vegetable Wrap with Feta Cheese and Lemon-Oregano Aioli
And:
• Sour Cream Pound Cake with Strawberry-Rhubarb Jam and Burnt Honey Crème Anglaise
• Sodas, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

HOT TIP: DO NOT TOSS YOUR NAPKIN and SERVING-WARE!
You could be one of the few lucky winners to locate a golden ticket and score some great prizes. Keep a close eye on that golden ticket!

Tuesday, May 5
Continental Breakfast Buffet with Hot Elements, featuring:
• Mexican Chocolate-Banana Muffins, Cinnamon Streusel Scone, Roasted Pear Bread, Plain and Asiago Bagels with Whipped Butter, Peanut Butter, Fruit Preserves and Light and Regular Cream Cheese
• Apples, Bananas and Oranges
• Individual Greek and Regular Yogurts
• Breakfast Burrito with Scrambled Eggs, Chorizo Sausage, Peppers, Spinach and Jack Cheese Cheese, or Scrambled Eggs, Peppers, Spinach and Jack Cheese
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Hot Lunch Buffet, featuring:
• Tortilla Chips with Salsa
• Sweet Corn “Elote” Salad with Cucumber, Scallion and Chile-Lime Dressing
• Jicama, Orange and Watercress Salad with Cotija Cheese and Tequila Lime Vinaigrette
• Chicken and Tomatillo Enchiladas with Melted Chihuahua Cheese and Salsa Verde
• Grilled Mahi Mahi with Mango Serrano Salsa
• Roasted Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Chipotle Tamale
• Cinnamon and Sugar Churros with Dulce De Leche Drizzle and Mexican Chocolate Brownies
• Sodas, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Wednesday, May 6
Hot Breakfast Buffet, featuring:
• Banana Bread, Blueberry Scone, Chocolate Chip Muffin with Whipped Butter and Fruit Preserves
• Apples, Bananas and Oranges
• Individual Greek and Regular Yogurts
• Scrambled Eggs
• Apple Wood Smoked Bacon
• Breakfast Potato Casserole with Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese, Chives and Crème Fraiche
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Cold Lunch Buffet, featuring:
• Honey Corn Bread with Whipped Butter
• Sweet and Spicy BBQ Cole Slaw
• Creamy Loaded Baked Potato Salad with Bacon, Cheddar, Scallions, and Sour Cream Dressing
• Buttermilk Fried Chicken (served at room temperature)
• Herb Rubbed Flank Steak (served at room temperature) with Corn and Tomato Relish
• Roasted Tomato, Asparagus and White Cheddar Strudel
• Blueberry Pie Cheesecake and Watermelon Cubes with Agave Syrup
• Sodas, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Thursday, May 7
Continental Breakfast Buffet, featuring:
• Assorted Freshly Baked Breakfast Breads, Muffins, Scones and Maple Bacon Donuts with Sweet Butter and Preserves
• Seasonal Whole Fruit
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Hot Lunch Buffet, featuring:
• Brioche Rolls with Whipped Butter
• California Chopped Salad with Baby Kale, Red Quinoa, Blueberry, Sunflower Seeds, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Dried Cranberries, Mango, Carrot and Honey Orange Dressing
• Antipasto Salad with Salami, Roasted Artichoke Hearts, Provolone, Garbanzo Beans and Red Wine Vinaigrette
• Cali Style Braised Beef Bourguignon with Napa Pinot Noir Reduction, Pearl Onions and Parsley-Carrot Gremolata
• Roasted Garlic Glazed Chicken Breast with Parsley-Lemon “Jus”
• Grilled Corn Polenta Cakes with Wild Mushrooms, Fava Beans and Tomato and Crumbled Chevre
• Red Velvet Cupcakes and Apple Strudel Squares
• Sodas, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

Friday, May 8
Continental Breakfast Buffet, featuring:
• Assorted Freshly Baked Breakfast Breads, Muffins, Scones and Croissants with Sweet Butter and Preserves
• Seasonal Whole Fruit
• Orange Juice, Cranberry Juice, Coffee, Decaffeinated Coffee and Hot Tea

“Bag Your Own” Lunch, featuring a choice of:
• Tuscan Roast Beef Sandwich with Caramelized Onion and Sweet Pepper Jam, Provolone Cheese, Romaine, Plum Tomato on Herbed Focaccia                                     • Oven Roasted Turkey with Swiss Cheese, English Cucumber, Minted Green Goddess Mayo on Whole Grain Ciabatta
• Eggplant, Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Red Pepper, Romaine, Pesto, Black Pepper & Balsamic Vinegar Summer Roll (vegan and gluten-free)

Choice of:
• Sonoma Quinoa Salad with Edamame, Cranberries, Mango, Almonds, Coconut and Baby Spinach
• Seasonal Fruit Salad with Agave Nectar
• Rotini Pasta Salad with Julienne Vegetables and Herb Vinaigrette
• Assorted Potato Chips, Pretzels and Sun Chips
• Gourmet Chocolate Chunk and Sea Salt Cookie, Chunky Oatmeal Raisin Cookie
• Canned Beverages

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If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Keep in mind that Microsoft Ignite taking place May 4-8, 2015, in Chicago is SOLD OUT!

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

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Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 10) – The One About The Yammer Network on MyIgnite

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This week on Episode 10 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) flies solo without Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN), however he is joined by a special guest, Olaf Hubel (@OlafHubel), senior product marketing manager with the Office 365 team, and who is responsible for the content on Microsoft Ignite.

Joey provides some news bites on Ignite which you can catch up in the video and he answers a question asked on the Microsoft Ignite forum.
Question: Where will I find the remote badge pickup stations at O’Hare International Airport?
AnswerRemote badge pickup at O’Hare is located in the baggage claim area for terminals 1 and 3. You can’t miss it!
Remote badge pickup at O’Hare is available: Saturday 10:00 AM–8:00 PM / Sunday 8:00 AM–7:00 PM.

In this episode, Joey and Olaf demonstrate on how to use the Yammer network on MyIgnite, how you can join discussions, ask questions, network, and interact with speakers and other attendees and do much more via MyIgnite and the Yammer network. I am excited to see my good friend, Naomi Moneypenny (@nmoneypenny) used as an example in the demo, highlighting how a speaker such as her is using the Yammer network to communicate and engage with her attendees in advance which will help guide and allow her to plan the content of her session accordingly. FYI – Naomi is a MVP, a great speaker, a fellow Microsoft Ignite Roundtable member, and a wonderful person.
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Coming soon to MyIgnite!
The Second Screen Experience – This is such a great feature which will allow you to follow a session live on your laptop, ask questions via the Yammer network, and even participate while you’re in a different session room or on the Expo floor, and yes even from your hotel room! Watch the video to hear how the Second Screen is going to change your event experience. Also coming soon:
  • Speaker Search and Details
  • Attendee Search and Details
  • Meeting Scheduling
  • Personal Appointments
  • OneNote Conference Guide

You are encouraged to build your schedules and even double and triple book sessions within the same time slots. The advance schedule builds by attendees will provide valuable information to Ignite planners on which sessions are popular, how to schedule them into appropriate rooms, and offer repeat sessions if needed. Since, the room assignments are not currently included in the catalog, I would recommend that you hold off on exporting your schedule to your calendar until rooms have been assigned to the sessions which will happen as we get closer to the conference. This will save you the hassle of exporting and importing into your calendar multiple times.

Finally, make sure you update your profile for the Attendee Directory, which you can do through MyIgnite, with pertinent information such as your bio, interests, social tags, photo, and contact information, so you can start networking and connect with others with similar interests, even before you arrive in Chicago for the conference. You will also have a choice to share your schedule with others, as well as opt-in to be listed in the Attendee Directory if you choose to do so.

Watch the video to see Joey and Olaf demonstrate how to use the Yammer network on MyIgnite.

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Keep in mind that Microsoft Ignite taking place May 4-8, 2015, in Chicago is currently SOLD OUT!

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

Please like & share:

Microsoft Ignite 2015 – SOLD OUT!!

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Microsoft Ignite 2015 is SOLD OUT!
Join online May 4-8, 2015 starting at 9 AM CDT at http://ignite.microsoft.com.
The Keynote and several selected sessions will be streamed LIVE from Chicago.
Stay tuned!

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Please like & share:

Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 9) – The One About Schedule Builder on MyIgnite

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The anticipation and wait is over. This week on Episode 9 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) bring us the 2nd most requested show, all about the Schedule Builder. You’ve been asking when you can start building your schedules, well now you can. The Schedule Builder is now LIVE on MyIgnite!

The Schedule Builder is greatly improved from previous years and has some wonderful capabilities, especially with the filtering options that is going to drastically ease the experience of building one’s schedule. Along with the Schedule Builder, a conference multi-tool known as MyIgnite is rolling out, with more features as we get closer to the conference dates of May 4-8. This tool, which is basically a digital hub will help enhance everyone’s experience with Ignite.

What’s MyIgnite you ask?
In it’s current phase of development, the MyIgnite tool will include the Schedule Builder, provide access to sponsor and exhibitor information, and the ability to join the Yammer network. The tool is evolving and the future functionality will include the Attendee Directory, a meeting scheduler, and more. In order to experience the full functionality and take advantages of what the tool offers, you will need to associate your Windows Live ID with your Microsoft Ignite registration. To do so, go to http://ignite.microsoft.com and click on “I’ve already registered”, and follow the steps to associate your Live ID with your registration. This is the first step you need to take before starting with the Schedule Builder.

Microsoft Ignite encourages you to build your schedules and even double and triple book sessions within the same time slots, which will help you when you have a conflict or a change of mind with the sessions you want to attend at the last minute. The advance schedule builds by attendees will provide valuable information to Ignite planners on which sessions are popular, how to schedule them into appropriate rooms, and offer repeat sessions if needed. Since, the room assignments are not currently included in the catalog, I would recommend that you hold off on exporting your schedule to your calendar until rooms have been assigned to the sessions which will happen as we get closer to the conference. This will save you the hassle of exporting and importing into your calendar multiple times. Keep in mind that seating for the Hands-On-Labs (HOL) are on first-come-first-served basis and therefore, they are not guaranteed.

Finally, make sure you update your profile for the Attendee Directory, which you can do through MyIgnite, with pertinent information such as your bio, interests, social tags, photo, and contact information, so you can start networking and connect with others with similar interests, even before you arrive in Chicago for the conference. You will also have a choice to share your schedule with others, as well as opt-in to be listed in the Attendee Directory if you choose to do so.

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Without further delay, watch the video to see Rick and Joey demonstrate how to use the Schedule Builder and how you can update your profile.

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Register now for Microsoft Ignite, May 4-8, 2015, Chicago.

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

Please like & share:

Show Your Badge – Microsoft Ignite Discounts in Chicago

The good folks at @ChooseChicago have put together a list of participating businesses that offer discounts to Microsoft Ignite attendees. Take advantage of the awesome attractions, delicious dining options, and premier shopping in Chicago! Show your Microsoft Ignite badge at participating venues and win these amazing deals.

Denise Begley of Microsoft Ignite has created a great list off the @MS_Ignite Twitter Handle incase you want to learn more about the places offering these discounts:
Show Your Badge Twitter List.

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Discount list from ChooseChicago located HERE!

I highly recommend that you follow Choose Chicago, which is the official guide for Chicago offering a vast amount of information relating to this awesome city.  The friendly folks at Choose Chicago are quick to answer and offer valuable advice on your visit to Chicago. Follow and check them out.

For conversations and interactions regarding Microsoft Ignite, join the following channels:

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Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 8) – The One About Rocking Out at the HOB, Craft Beers & Bacon, and the Best Hamburger in Chicago

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This week on Episode 8 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) save the best for last in terms of their most favorite hot spots in Chicago.  And they also talk about the early badge pickup which you’ll be able to do at various remote locations, which are several downtown hotels and at Chicago O’Hare airport.

Microsoft Ignite is offering the convenience of early badge pick-up at the locations listed below in the Chicago area. It’s highly recommended that you take this opportunity to pickup your badge early so that you can avoid the lines on Monday morning prior to the keynote. Early badge pick-up will be available on Saturday, May 2 and Sunday, May 3 starting at 10:00AM CST.  Please note: This is offer is for the badge only. All other materials including bags must be picked up at the McCormick Place Conference Center.

  • Chicago O’Hare International Airport (Terminals 1 & 3)
  • Microsoft Retail Store – Shops at North Bridge
  • Palmer House a Hilton Hotel
  • Hyatt Regency Chicago
  • Hotel Chicago Downtown, Autograph Collection
  • MileNorth Hotel
  • Drake Hotel

The best for last hot spots in Chicago:

Paddy Long’s Beer and Bacon Pub:
Rated by Yahoo as one of the Best Irish Pubs in America for St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations. Paddy Long’s features 18 beers on tap and specializes in all kinds of bacon. Beer and bacon tastings are offered weekly and a brunch on Saturday and Sunday. Their other location is called Kaiser Tiger located on the West Loop.

Twitter: @PaddyLongs

Revolution Brewing Company:
A great Chicago BrewPub located in bustling Logan Square neighborhood, produces about 50 different styles of beer every year.  Check out their amazing brew and their yummy food. Great atmosphere, great beers, and great food, not to be missed.
Twitter: @RevBrewChicago

Rockit Bar & Grill:
Voted by People’s Choice Award in 2014 as the best burger in Chicago. Rockit is known for it’s cocktails, bourbons and whiskeys, and a selection of 6 craft beers on tap.  Quieter atmosphere downstairs and a much more livelier setting upstairs with pool tables and lots of TVs.
Twitter: @Rockit

Lagunitas Brewing Company:
An amazing brewery in a massive warehouse offering some fantastic beers. Come check out the brewery where they offer tours on weekdays and enjoy some fresh beers in their tap room.  The catwalk tour of the brewery is awesome.
Twitter: @lagunitasbeer

And finally, what is Ignite Rocks?
It is what was formerly known as the Jam Session at TechEd.  Come check out fellow attendees and speakers show off their musical talents, and feel free to take part if you like to do so. Great time to relax, enjoy some great music, and network with fellow attendees.  Ignite Rocks takes place at the House of Blues on Monday, May 5 from 9:00PM-Midnight.

Also recommend that you follow Choose Chicago, which is the official guide for Chicago offering a vast amount of information relating to this awesome city.  The friendly folks at Choose Chicago are quick to answer and offer valuable advice on your visit to Chicago. Follow and check them out as well.

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Register now for Microsoft Ignite, May 4-8, 2015, Chicago.

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

Please like & share:

Ask Harjit Why Microsoft Ignite?

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I’ve been a strong supporter of Microsoft technologies and an influencer on the Microsoft conference scenes, particularly TechEd, and now Microsoft Ignite.  I was invited to join the TechEd Roundtable team in November 2013 for the TechEd conference in Houston, and again in September 2014 for the Microsoft Ignite conference in Chicago. Roundtable members are individually selected based on various criteria, including their tech industry, technical background, influence within the IT Pro communities, and professionalism. Roundtable members have the opportunity to meet and discuss with the conference planning team, provide suggestions, address issues or concerns, receive advance information on upcoming news or implementations, and have a direct channel of communication with the key people in the Microsoft events circle.

This week, I’m honored to be featured by the Microsoft Ignite team on all their social media channels with my take on why one should attend the Ignite conference. Thank you to all on the Microsoft Ignite team.  Cheers!  Here’s the Twitter post by MS_Ignite.

“You can have a very broad experience to try and learn about newer things that you’re interested in or you could focus on the stuff you actually do at work and enhance that.”

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You can connect with me on Twitter (@Hoorge) and Instagram (@Harjit).

For conversations and interactions on Microsoft Ignite, you can join the following channels:

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Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 7) – The One About Breaking In Shoes Now, Wrigley Field, Navy Pier and Buddy Guy’s Legends

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This week on Episode 7 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) take on more questions from the Microsoft Ignite Forums, and take you on a tour of three classic Chicago hot spots.

First up, the top questions this week from the Microsoft Ignite forums:
Question #1: If you only had time to visit one Chicago destination while at Ignite, what would it be?
Answer: Rick enjoyed the river architecture boat tour, which was covered in Episode 3 of the Countdown Show. Joey offered two of his top choices. If you’re an art lover, then the Art Institute of Chicago is the place to be. You could easily spend the entire day from opening to closing and enjoy every single minute of your visit. If you’re a sports fan, then you must catch a game at Wrigley Field.

Question #2: Do you have tips for first-time attendees?
Answer: It’s highly recommended that you keep watching the Countdown Shows, specifically an upcoming episode which will provide plenty of tips for the first time attendees.

Hot Tip: Rick and Joey offer a great tip for all attendees but especially important for first timers to the conference. “Don’t wear new shoes to the conference… your feet will be killing you.”   You’ll be doing plenty of walking, and believe me, you’ll be doing plenty of walking! If you’re planning on buying new shoes for the conference, buy them now and start breaking them in.

Next up, hot attractions in Chicago:
Check out the virtual tour of the top three hot attractions in this week’s segment listed below.

Buddy Guy’s Legends Chicago:
If you’re in the mood for some Blues while in Chicago, then you must check out Buddy Guy’s Legends. You can catch live shows every single night in this cozy little club jammed packed with some amazing Blues memorabilia. Food selection here is yummy New Orleans style, such as the classics po-boys and catfish. Get your tickets in advance and it’s highly recommended that you plan to arrive at least an hour early to get yourself a good seat. Keep in mind that it’s open seating and therefore, there are no reserved seats available. If you plan to check out a show with some friends, make sure that everyone in your party arrives together, as this club fills up fast.
Twitter: @BuddyGuys

Navy Pier:
Chicago’s historic Navy Pier is not only the number 1 attraction in Chicago but a top destination in the Midwest, drawing approximately 9 million visitors annually. Navy Pier has something for everyone with 50 acres of parks, shops, restaurants, an IMAX Theater, Chicago Children’s Museum, a Ferris wheel, various rides, and much more. It’s a great place to take a stroll on the pier and check out the Chicago skyline, and have something to eat and drink as well.
Twitter: @navypier

Wrigley Field:
Play Ball! Any sports fan knows this iconic home of the Chicago Cubs. 101 years of history and a landmark not to be missed. Get your tickets, catch a game, and have a great time.
Twitter: @Cubs

I highly recommend that you follow Choose Chicago, which is the official guide for Chicago offering a vast amount of information relating to this awesome city.  The friendly folks at Choose Chicago are quick to answer and offer valuable advice on your visit to Chicago.  Follow and check them out as well.

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Register now for Microsoft Ignite, May 4-8, 2015, Chicago.

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

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Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 6) – The One About The Bag

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One of the most sort after Countdown shows is here and its all about the BAG(s)!  Yup, you heard it right, bags. Not one, not two, not three, but four trim colors.  Each Microsoft Ignite attendee will have a choice of blue, orange, yellow, or green trim colors on ballistic black backpacks. Each bag is identical and comes with a matching water bottle and a removable accessory bag which zips open and can lay flat to allow for easy access. This accessory bag is ideal for cables, adapters, batteries, flash drives, memory cards, and other small items which tend to disappear within a large bag.

In short and sweet, these bags are durable, made of ballistic material, has zippered compartments, pockets, key chain hook, padded backpack straps for comfort, padded back with air channel for support, and completely padded compartments to keep your laptops and tablets protected. Watch the video and see how Rick packs it full with several of his devices including his hefty 17″ laptop. It’s crazy but he demonstrates that it can be done.

So, this week on Episode 6 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) talk all about the bags. Watch the video for complete details of the bags! For the sake of fun, tweet your choice of trim colors with the hashtags #IgniteYellow, #IgniteGreen, #IgniteBlue, or #IgniteOrange.

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Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. The Microsoft Ignite team monitors all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Register now for Microsoft Ignite, May 4-8, 2015, Chicago.

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

Please like & share:

Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show (Ep. 5) – The One About The Session Catalog Update

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This week on Episode 5 of the Microsoft Ignite Countdown Show, Rick Claus (@RicksterCDN) and Joey Snow (@JoeySnow) shed some light on how to join conversations on social media and on the Ignite Forums, and how you can make the connections with your fellow IT peers and with Ignite Speakers.

They answer some top questions this week from the Microsoft Ignite Forums and below are their responses:

Question #1: How can I meet people from my geographic area or industry?

Answer: First, you can always join the conversation on Twitter using #msignite in your tweets. See what everyone is talking about, make connections, and find like-minded attendees. Even better, get on the Microsoft Ignite Forums! The Forums are open to anyone—you don’t have to be registered to participate. Go to http://channel9.msdn.com/Forums/MicrosoftIgnite to get started. Join existing threads, or start your own. Ask questions, share your opinions, discuss your plans, and connect with peers. It’s a great way to find other attendees from your area or industry and plan time to meet in person at Ignite!

Question #2: How can I learn who’ll be presenting, and get in touch with speakers?

Answer: Check the Session Catalog for new speaker assignments, which have now been added to sessions. Click on the speaker’s name to see their bio, photo, and a list of other sessions they’ll be delivering at Ignite, as well as how to connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, etc. New filters have been added to help you search for sessions by speaker, industry, product, theme… you name it. You’ll also get recommendations of other speakers and sessions to consider adding to your personal session schedule.

Question #3: I’ve already registered. Can I still add a Pre-Day Session?

Answer: Of course! Just go to http://ignite.microsoft.com/register, sign in to your registration record, click on Pre-Day Sessions, Edit, and select the session you would like to attend. There are 17 Pre-Day Sessions to choose from, all are a full-day of focused discussion. Lunch is provided for Pre-Day attendees. Explore the full Pre-Day lineup, and consider adding one to your registration.

Ask your questions on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, via Twitter, or in the Comments section below the video. We’ll get to all questions as we have answers, so keep watching the Countdown Show!

Check out this episode on Channel 9 or you can watch it directly below:

If you have questions, concerns, or suggestions, feel free to ask on the Microsoft Ignite Forums, on Twitter, as well as in the Comments section under the video. They monitor all questions and will respond as they have the answers or information.

Keep watching for more tips on making the most of your experience at Ignite, and more ways to enjoy Chicago! Register now for Microsoft Ignite, May 4-8, 2015, Chicago.

For conversations and interactions, join the following channels:

You can also follow me on Twitter (@Hoorge) and Instagram, and feel free to reach out to me if I can help answer some questions or be of further assistance.  Stay tuned for the next episode of the Countdown Show, coming up next Tuesday at 8:00AM PST / 11:00AM EST.

Please like & share: