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Distinguished Engineer Don Box, Architect of WCF, Essential COM

Distinguished Engineer Don  Box

Don Box is a Distinguished Engineer at Microsoft working on declarative languages and tools to simplify developing applications and services. In that role, Don is involved in creating languages, frameworks, and end-to-end experiences to help people translate their intentions and desires for software into a machine readable and executable form.

Don joined Microsoft in 2002 as an architect of Windows Communication Foundation (WCF), where he worked on software to enable programs to safely and securely interoperate with one another. Don's responsibilities included both the design and architecture of the runtime stack, as well as interoperability protocols with IBM and other partners.

Before joining Microsoft, Don was an independent consultant focused on software integration technologies. Don was the leading external voice for Microsoft's Component Object Model (COM) and Microsoft Transaction Server (MTS) and helped shape the way developers across the globe experience those technologies. In 1996, Don worked as a consultant to Software AG and Microsoft on the UNIX-based Distributed COM project; that work gave Don the desire to move away from shared-runtime distributed architectures and embrace data-centric message passing using XML. To that end, Don worked with Microsoft and Dave Winer to create the original SOAP specification in 1998.

Don is a respected writer on software development topics, serving as a series editor at Addison Wesley and as a contributing editor to C++ Report, Microsoft Systems Journal (MSJ), and MSDN Magazine. Don's first book, Essential COM, remains a part of the C++ developer's canon. Don was the first blogger to publish RSS from a Microsoft web property (http://www.gotdotnet.com/) and now (sporadically) maintains a blog at http://www.pluralsight.com/blogs/dbox/. Don has a Master's degree in Information and Computer Science from U.C. Irvine and a Bachelor's degree in Mathematics from C.S.U. Long Beach.

Presentation: "Data and Programs: Rethinking the fundamentals"

Time: Thursday 09:00 - 10:00

Location: To be announced

Abstract: The last ten years have seen an intense amount of energy devoted to how programs and data relate. This talk looks at the current state of the practice and how we arrived here, as well as identifying the next set of challenges ahead.

Presentation: "Codename "M": Language, Data, and Modeling, Oh My!"

Time: Friday 13:30 - 14:30

Location: City


"M" was invented to let one set of people to use a lowly text editor to write down information that another set of people can then consume programmatically.

While we were inventing the language, Martin Fowler was nice enough to give us nicer terminology (external DSLs) for what we (and a lot of other people) were doing. This talk looks at how the "M" language works and the changes we've made and are making on our circuitous route to shipping a new kind of language.