Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

Summary: Microsoft is doing away with its annual Mix designer/developer event. This year, instead, the company is planning a developer conference likely to focus on Windows 8.

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The rumors were true: Microsoft is doing away with its annual Mix conference for designers and developers after a six-year run. Microsoft officials finally confirmed that there will be no Mix '12 -- and no future Mix events -- via a blog post on January 24.

There is, however, going to be some kind of Microsoft developer event in calendar 2012, though Microsoft officials said they haven't yet decided on its name, date or location. I'd bet whatever it is will be anchored to the releases of Windows 8 and Visual Studio 2012. (It sounds like this mystery event isn't happening any time soon, so don't expect it to be timed with the delivery of the beta/"Consumer Preview" of Windows 8, which is expected by late February, 2012.)

Microsoft also will continue to hold smaller, local and Web-casted developer events throughout the year, as well, today's blog post noted.

When Microsoft replaced its Professional Developers Conference with BUILD in September 2011, there were some rumblings that BUILD also might end up replacing Microsoft’s annual Mix conference.

"As we look ahead to 2012 and beyond, the goal is to ensure that global Microsoft developer events are of the caliber that many of you experienced at BUILD last September," blogged Tim O'Brien, General Manager of Developer & Platform Evangelism (DPE).

Microsoft execs aren't linking the death of Mix to anything to do with Silverlight, despite the fact that Mix got its start largely as a promotional vehicle for Windows Presentation Foundation and WPF/e (a k a Silverlight). Microsoft officials didn't share today any new information about what's next for Silverlight. (Yes, I asked again.)

Instead, the Softies are attributing the end of Mix to the fact that the company has largely addressed the shortcomings that Mix originally was created to fix. Internet Explorer is no longer a Web standards laggard. Microsoft's Web platform and open-source tools/platforms outreach is on far more solid footing than it was back in 2006. And, as O'Brien acknowledges, Microsoft is trimming back on the number of major conferences it is sponsoring -- and, I'd add, in some cases, attending, like the Consumer Electronics Show.

I think developers who've been starting to work on Windows 8 apps -- and those who are raring to do so --  will agree that more information, documentation and time meeting with Microsoft engineers will be welcome.

Let's see if Microsoft times the coming dev event (DEVELOP? WRITE? BUILD 2.0?) with the Windows 8 Release Candidate, its RTM or its launch... And if we potential attendees get to vote on location/timing, I vote Seattle in September. Anyone else have guesses/suggestions for the timing/content/location of the coming devcon?

Topics: Microsoft, Apps, Operating Systems, Software, Software Development, Windows

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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13 comments
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  • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

    My guess is the event is sometime around June/July getting developers ready for the official launch of Windows 8. We'll probably see an RC released around then and specific info that has constantly eluded us will be hammered down.

    Oh, and Microsoft will announce what we've known for years, the final name is Windows 8 (heck, they don't even use the word "codename" anymore, it's that obvious).
    Jeff Kibuule
    • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

      @dagamer34 There will be TechED in the summer. And with SharePoint Conference and new Office coming as well the timing will be interesting to see.
      jv_
  • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

    Why not in Anaheim again, where the weather is great?
    peo88
  • MS conference schedule at present

    MS has a busy conference/launch schedule through the summer. Starting this fall, it's a bit more open. Here's what I have so far on the MS conference list, for what it's worth:

    http://www.zdnet.com/blog/microsoft/microsofts-2012-conference-dance-card-filling-up-minus-mix/11243

    Thanks. MJ
    Mary Jo Foley
    • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

      @Mary Jo Foley End of July or August perhaps? I just think it's really important to have a developer event before the full launch of Windows 8 so that especially developers writing paid apps are able to get all their ducks in a row. Unless the thinking is that Microsoft is launching Windows 8 in October again, totally missing back to school.
      Jeff Kibuule
  • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

    MIX was always something special, even though the latest editions had lost a bit of their design-ish beginnings. It will always remain a major memory for me (and I am proud to have spoken there thrice). It was a real community-driven event. I really hope that Microsoft realizes that Build is no replacement for MIX.
    lbugnion
  • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

    Microsoft is doing great. It's refreshing to see them returning to the dominant position, hey once held. Now that the silly "oversite" is done with, Microsoft should be free to pursue the objectives that made them great to begin with. Making the best software available and integrating the right components to make everything work seamlessly.
    Stephen-B
    • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

      @Rick_Kl <br>+1
      toddybottom_z
    • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

      @Stephen-B "MS is doing great. It's refreshing to see them returning to the dominant position..." <br><br>What are you smoking? Loss of share almost everywhere including the desktop, and about a third loss of shareholder value in five years while Apple (for one) improved 3x.<br><br>MS is now struggling for its life, no signs of "return to dominance" except fanboi dreams. E.g. with XP support ending, every IT person I know has moved or is moving to Win7 - - and intends to stay at Win7 for a very long time, not quickly switch again to Win8 (duh!). <br><br>And iOs and Android are so very far ahead and moving so much faster than MS in the mobile space that whatever MS does, even if it is excellent, MS is so very far behind that it is unlikely to ever catch up.
      Allen_Wentz
      • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

        @Allen_Wentz you're just a Microsoft hating troll. Windows 7, and 8, are so much more advanced that Ios. In the mobile space expect an explosion of marketshare one the brilliant Nokia WP 7 phones hit the shelves. I bought a Lumiia 710, and it's 5 times better than the guy in the office's iJunk phone. The best parts is my Lumia cost me $50 and the closest iJunk phone is $300+! So I paid less, for better performance. When the even better Lumia 900 comes out, expect them to be hard to find, as they absolutely will destroy anything else out there. It would be llke getting a Ferrari, after driving Focus, but getting the Ferrari for the same price. While with the iJunk phone it's like getting a focus for the price of a Ferrari!
        Stephen-B
  • If they want more W8 apps done right by RTM then it really needs to be this

    spring. Around the same time MIX was. If they miss that then W8 will have a pretty sparse marketplace at RTM. If the os/tools arent ready enough for a dev event this spring then they messed up for getting W8 tablets in hand for back to school 2012
    Johnny Vegas
  • Microsoft officials said they haven???t yet decided on [...]

    [...] any API's related to data access and LOB apps.
    rmac_z
  • RE: Microsoft to replace Mix with a new developer conference

    <<I vote Seattle in September<br>How about April in Paris :-)?<br><br>Thanks for keeping asking about the future of Silverlight!<br>It should/could be considered as yet another facet of the same UI/Graphics engine among others like Metro, WPF, WP7..., which would justify to keep developing it.<br><br>Given the framentation of those technologies, there is a long way to go, which is all the more upsetting since they should have been designed and implemented with the obsession of consistency in mind from scratch...<br><br>Philippe
    philippe.monteil@...