Some of the PDC Sessions have started to come online, and I had a chance to watch a few of them.
Anders did a great job (as usual), explain the next phase of evolution of our favorite .NET language. Many of the changes are being driven by a need to improve interoperability and usability when communicating outside of the strongly-typed, managed world of pure C#. I especially loved his self-deprecation when he discussed adding optional parameters to C#.
Scott did a good job, but this was the least interesting of the sessions I saw today.
Scott covered AJAX improvements, integration with jQuery, ASP.NET MVC, and the Dynamic Data Features. I was disappointed that he zipped through the WinForms improvements. It doesn't seem like much new is planned on that front despite Microsoft ensuring that they wish to continue to develop both WinForms and MVC.
I've not heard of Manuvir before, but I thought his presentation was excellent, and covered everything that should have been part of the keynote on Day 1. If you want a great Azure 101 introduction, including the why and how, this is a good place to start.
Steve did a very hands-on introduction to what it is like to develop your first Azure service application. He started with the same Hello, World application from his part in the keynote, but went a little deeper into the explanation. The most important part of this part is that developing a service can be almost the same as developing an ASP.NET web application, so your existing developer skills transfer well. This doesn't mean that only ASP.NET works, though. There is already support for other managed applications and support for native applications, like PHP and C++ is planned before the commercial release.
Again, most of the focus was on standard ASP.NET MVC stuff, but with this example he was able to show how access to storage services need to change in order to scale appropriately on Azure.
Since I've been very interested in Domain-Specific Languages (DSL's) and modeling, I've been keeping a close eye on this project. I really wanted to watch Chris and Gio's session, too, but sadly it hasn't posted to the web yet.
Doug did a great job, though, explaining what "Oslo" is and then he dug into the tools and the code. It was a very good introduction, which will probably help when they finally do post the "Oslo": Building Textual DSLs session tomorrow.