Microsoft MVP Again!

I wanted to take the time to thank all of those people who are responsible for my Microsoft MVP status.  I got the email this morning that I’ve been renewed as a Microsoft MVP in Visual C# for the 6th time!

So what’s this mean that you’re a Microsoft MVP?  How did you become a Minimum Viable Product?

Ha! I am not a Minimum Viable Product or even a Microsoft Garage project. 😉

Seriously, though, I’m a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional in Visual C#.  That means that somewhere in the community or Microsoft realm, there are people who find my contributions to the community valuable enough to get this recognition.  Some of my contributions include:

  • Blogging
  • Conference Organizing – Local, both in Cleveland and Columbus
  • Conference Speaking – Local and regional opportunities
  • Serving on a local high school’s advisory board and giving them guidance on including Microsoft technologies in their programs
  • Volunteering with Cleveland GiveCamp (which will be on July 18-20 this year!)
  • Serving as an MVP Mentor

Does this mean you know everything under the sun about C#?

Not a chance.  You do realize what you’re asking, right?  There isn’t a Matrix program that could be used to get me to spit out all the solutions to C# problems.  However, I do know where I can find these solutions or at least others who may have encountered these problems.

For those who don’t realize just how large C# is, some of the things you can do include:

  • Create PowerShell cmdlets to work with C# libraries.  Yes, those can be C#!
  • Create a WinForms application that can work on multiple platforms. Yes, C# can run on non-Windows platforms thanks to Mono!
  • Create shiny looking desktop apps using WPF.  Yes, C# can be used for those, too.
  • Create websites using ASP.NET MVC.  Or if you’re not a developer necessarily but want to get using some of the Microsoft web stack – use WebMatrix to try a project written in C#, such as Orchard CMS.
  • Go mobile and create apps that run on tablets and phones.  Yes, thanks to Xamarin, you can use C# to build apps to run on non-Microsoft platforms.
  • Create add-ins for Microsoft Office products.
  • Create projects that run in Windows Azure.
  • Create games using XNA Game Studio.
  • Control robots and other small electronics using the .NET Micro Framework and Gadgeteer.
  • Create an API for your clients to work with their data in your databases using WCF or even ASP.NET MVC.

And these are just some of the things that you can do with C#… there’s a whole lot more!

Are there any perks of being an MVP that you really like?

You can find out a lot more about what the award includes on the MVP Award Value page on the MVP program’s website.  Honestly, the part I like the most about being an MVP is networking with other MVPs and seeing how we can help each other and our communities out.  As we have relationships with the product teams at Microsoft, we can carry feedback from the community to the product teams.  Being an MVP has given me the ability to see that Microsoft doesn’t only solicit feedback from the community, but they also act upon it.

Okay… so I know something about Microsoft’s stuff and am very involved in the community.  How do I become an MVP?

Get noticed!  As MVPs, we talk with other MVPs and learn who the up-and-coming community members are.  We can pass this information along to the MVP Program by nominating people for the award.  Each expertise has their own guidelines on what they’re looking for, so it can vary.  But the heart of it all is definitely community engagement.  You can read more on Becoming an MVP on the MVP website.

So what can we expect this year?

This year presents new challenges.  I’m now figuring out how to balance work, community stuff, and now a growing family.  Owen (Sir Squirmy II) arrived in April, so I’m slowly getting back into things.  I’m on the planning committee for Dog Food Con and am planning on staying behind the scenes of Stir Trek again as well.  We’re talking about doing a SQL Saturday here in Cleveland next year, so I’m going to try to help with that as well.  As for presentations and blog posts, stay tuned, as I’ve got a bit in the queue.

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