So, here I am in one of my favourite places in all the world. For one of my favourite events of the year. I've been coming to the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional summit for a while now, and it is always fun. it is great to see a bunch of familiar faces and get to talk tech.
I flew in this afternoon on a geek-packed plane. The best way to get from Hull to anywhere is to nip down to Humberside airport, take a one hour flight to Schipol airport near Amsterdam and then fly anywhere; usually non-stop. So that's what I did.
The flight was great, although the last twenty five minutes were a bit more action packed than I was expecting. On some flights the captain says "Watch out for turbulence" and nothing much seems to happen. Well, this time we definitely got the bumpy ride that was promised.
After a bit of queuing at the airport we headed for the bus. A 2.50 dollar bus ride beats a 50 dollar cab ride every day. Once I'd unpacked I of course headed for the Bellevue mall and the Microsoft Store there. I wanted to have a look at the new Surface Book and see what other goodies they had in stock. The store was mad busy. Packed with people stacked up and waiting to buy stuff. It was so hectic at one point I had to go upstairs to the Apple store for some peace and quiet....
The Surface Book looks really nice and I was mentally setting aside the funds to get one but I've now really changed my mind. Thing is, it is rather expensive and probably scratches an itch that I haven't got. I don't need hairy graphics performance or all day battery life and so I reckon I can make do with my trusty Surface Pro 3. The other thing that I discovered is that the Surface Pro 4 Type Cover is awesome. Awesome, awesome, awesome. The keys are much better, the trackpad is proper and the hinge arrangement seems a lot stiffer, so it is much less "clacky" if you fold it back to angle the keyboard a bit. This keyboard is so good that I think it makes the Surface Pro a really viable laptop, without the need for the fancy book.
I'm typing this post on the new keyboard and it works really well. I managed to get one of ones with built in fingerprint reader (not available in the UK sadly) and It works wonderfully too. I'm going to have to live with slightly wrong keys here and there, but I reckon it is worth the trade off.
They also had some Microsoft Band 2 devices on sale. I quite liked my version 1 band, but it was never really as comfortable as I would have preferred. The new band addresses that, with much more flexible sides and a really premium feel that is streets ahead of the first version. I picked up one of them too (I figure that if I decided to get one any later they would have sold out) and I'll have a play with it later in the week. All I want to do at the moment is sleep....