Sun Microsystems hosts virtual press conference

Eric Rice has a podcast with Philip Rosedale, CEO of Linden Lab, John Gage, Sun Microsystems, and Chris Melissinos. It’s a Sun Microsystems’ press conference in Second Life. Thanks to Shannon Clark for letting me know.

This is very cool, but one problem: you can only get about 100 people into one press conference. So, if something is really hot you’ll make lots of people mad unless you take video out of Second Life. Even then some will get mad that the can’t get into the main event.

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Salesforce.com makes BIG play for all the VB’ers out there

I was over today at the Salesforce.com conference getting a look at their new Apex. It’s a big deal.

Remember Visual Basic? It made building business apps for Windows easy.

Drag and drop a few things onto a form and you have a working Windows app.

So, what’s the equivilent of Windows today? Multi-tenant datacenters. You know, services that run on things like Google, Amazon, eBay, MSN, Yahoo, or Salesforce.com’s datacenters (which run on thousands, or even, hundreds of thousands of machines — all that look like one system to a developer).

But building those apps and deploying them to the servers before has been a pretty complex job — Apex tries to make it all easy. I’m too tired to explain it all, but there’s plenty of great reports over on TechMeme. It’s quite impressive, though.

I also note that they have a way to build your own custom server-side extensions which you can then bundle up and share with other Salesforce.com customers.

To take that into another arena, imagine if one of you built a killer WordPress.com extention and then I could run it on WordPress.com (which is also a multi-tenant app). Imagine if the system were smart enough to let me load that extension without taking down the performance of any other WordPress.com customer.

The only problem is that Salesforce.com doesn’t have even close to the reach that Windows does, so saying that this is as significant as Visual Basic is a bit of hyperbole, but it is a pretty significant jump forward for enterprise developers.

Of course check out Dan Farber’s reports, which include a rebuttal from a Salesforce.com competitor, Netsuite.

Office 2.0 conferencegoers get iPods

Buzz Bruggeman is staying at the house, attending the local Office 2.0 conference tomorrow. Tonight he came in saying “this is the coolest swag I’ve ever gotten.”

When Buzz says that you know that he got something very cool.

And, indeed, he was proudly showing off his new iPod Nano, which he got for attending the Office 2.0 conference. It has notes and stuff on it too.

But, don’t despair, the rest of us all get something too: Google is launching “docs and spreadsheets.” Oh, and the conference team is publishing a bunch of Office 2.0 Podcasts. I wonder, does Microsoft hear the Google engine roaring to life?