Monthly Archives: April 2011

Key books every developer / designer should read

19 Apr 2011
by mjeaton, posted in business, programming   |  10 Comments

It seems like every software developer I talk to has at least one or two books they consider absolutely essential reading.

My list is pretty small and includes mostly non-technical books like Peopleware from DeMarco and Lister, Anthem by Rand and Maverick by Semler. There are others, but those are more on a personal level than professional. I’ll blog about those in a separate post.

So, my request is simple – I’m asking for books you think are essential reading for other software developers and designers. Please reply in the comments, or at the very least, blog and link back!

The Kalamazoo X Conference 2011

12 Apr 2011
by mjeaton, posted in business, personal, programming   |  Comments Off

On Saturday, April 30th, we’ll be holding the 3rd Kalamazoo X Conference in downtown Kalamazoo, MI. The event continues to focus on “soft skills” – all the things I like to say developers are typically bad at doing. :-)

It’s amazing how much time developers will spend learning the latest “shiny” tool or technology, but when it comes to improving their soft skills, they spend almost no time trying to improve. It’s something we’re trying to fix with the X Conference.

This year we have another great line-up of speakers including Joe O’Brien, Leon Gersing, Jim Holmes, Tim Ford, Jeff Blankenburg, Jeff McWherter and Laura Bergells. I have a couple other speakers in the pipeline, but I don’t want to announce until I have a firm commitment.

The talks this year range from “Rocking Your Body Language” to “Design Skills Every Developer Should Know” to a talk about what DBAs believe developers should know and do. I’m looking forward to each and every talk because I know the speakers are all extremely passionate about their topics.

We are continuing with our single-track format with talks ranging anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes. We’re also going to have what I think will be an *awesome* panel discussion on interviewing!

Here are some pictures from last year’s event and an interview I did with my friend Dave Giard for his Technology and Friends show.

You can register for the event here!

Updated at 9:23pm on 4/12 – fixed date.

I’ll be speaking at Codestock 2011!

12 Apr 2011
by mjeaton, posted in personal, programming   |  Comments Off

When the Codestock voting ended, two of my talks ended up in the top 4! I’ll be delivering “Simplify your WPF / Silverlight Applications with Caliburn.Micro and Re-thinking the (Desktop) User Interface.

Codestock has always been one of my favorite events. If you haven’t signed up, do it now!

Going Independent with Deep Fried Bytes

06 Apr 2011
by mjeaton, posted in business, personal, programming   |  2 Comments

Shortly before the MVP Summit, I received emails from Keith and Chris asking if I’d like to be on DFB to talk about WPF or going independent. While I really dig WPF, I told them I’d prefer to talk about being an independent developer for the past 10 years or so. A couple weeks ago, we recorded this episode. After Keith edited out an epic amount of “umms” (from both of us) and some of my so-called “tangents”, here is the result: Episode 67 – Tips on how to be an Independent Software Consultant with Michael Eaton