May 2010

Volume 25 Number 05

Editor's Note - This Way-Cool 'Internet' Doohickey

By Keith Ward | May 2010

Keith WardHey, have you heard about this groovy new thing called the “Internet”? Some people call it the “World Wide Web,” or “Web” for short, although I think the Web is just part of it.

Anyway, it’s a way that your computer connects to other computers. It’s mostly done by visiting these things called “Web sites.” Web sites can be almost anything—places to chat with friends, stores that only exist on computers (special ones called “servers”), newspapers that you can read with a computer or even just some guy who has “posted” tons of stuff about that TV show “Baywatch.” When you’re there, it’s called being “online.” You can buy books and clothes and cars and even trade junk with other people.

I’ve even heard that eventually stuff like video and audio will be available on this Internet thingy. Pretty cool, huh?

Bet you haven’t had a conversation like that in a while, eh? In reality (you know, non-geek years), the Internet—as a commercial and social medium—hasn’t been around all that long. I remember working as a news director at a Baltimore TV station’s Web site in 2000. It was my first real exposure to the day-to-day workings of the Web. I remember learning about things called “HTML” and “Cascading Style Sheets” and “alt tags” and wondering what the heck I was getting myself into.

Now here we are a decade later, and it’s hard to remember the days when I got my news from the plastic-wrapped paper deposited on my front yard every morning. Or had to drive to a bookstore to get the latest Stephen King novel. Portable phones were brick-sized (and -weight) devices with long antennas, and you couldn’t do anything with them but call people.

Those days now belong to the archives, and that Internet thingy continues to mature and grow. Rich Internet Applications, like Silverlight 4, continue to push forward like Lewis and Clark, exploring new ways to build and deliver apps. That’s our focus this month.

Product Reviews from Readers, for Readers

In much the same way, MSDN Magazine is similarly moving ahead. We’re going to be adding something special to both the print and online versions of MSDN Magazine, starting in a few months. And we want you—need you, in fact—to be a part of it.

We’re going to start running product reviews written by our readers. So if you’re a developer using something you think is exceptionally cool, let us know about how you use it and what it does for you. On the other hand, if you’re using something that just doesn’t work, or work well, that’s valuable information, too. We’d love to hear from you.

We’re looking for articles in the range of 500 to 1,000 words. The products can be from Microsoft or another source—anything you use to help you in your job. We’re looking for honest, open and clear reviews.

You don’t have to be a published author to write a review. We’re looking for passionate developers who have something interesting to say and want to share their experiences with their colleagues.

Authors will be paid for articles. The reviews will appear both in the print issue of the magazine and the online version.

One thing to note: we will verify the authenticity of all authors and products. That means if you’re a vendor posing as an author, with the goal of touting your latest ground-breaking product by disguising it as a review, we’ll find out about it. Remember that these reviews are only as valuable as the honesty of the reviewer, so please avoid any of those types of shenanigans.

For more information about the process, and guidelines for the review, contact us at Make sure you put “Reader Product Reviews” in the subject line, so we’ll be sure to flag it.

We’re looking forward to hearing from you!