The Colorado GOP says my vote is irrelevant

The Colorado GOP will decide your vote this season.  No seriously they will.  You don't get a say.

"Colorado’s delegates to the 2016 RNC will be unbound"

Now that doesn't sound bad does it?  But it is. 

It means that the Colorado Republicans do not respect the views and desires and votes of its Colorado citizens. 

It means don't you worry your pretty little head about voting sweetie, we got this, now go make me a sammich.

It means that each delegate chooses the candidate they personally prefer, with no regard to the will of the people.

Used to be that in order to have a say in the Colorado primary/caucus process you needed to register as GOP.  That's why I was registered as such for many years. 

I switched that today.

GOP press release here.

I will continue to vote based my own thoughts and not based on party.  But I demand my voice be heard.  We all should.

Register now for my Hello World Road Show stop!

The Hello World podcast by Shawn Wildermuth has been getting the stories of how folks began their journeys in software.  He's going on the road and taking his show with him. And I'm going to be the guest at the stop in Denver on March 24.  Join us at the Microsoft office in the evening from 6:30-9.  We'll chat and then also Shawn with give a talk about ASP Core.  Seating is limited, so reserve your spot now!

If you can't make the Denver stop, have a look, there's probably a stop near you.

See you in Denver!


If I have to have rheumatoid arthritis, at least I’m a ninja

Today I admit to being human

This blog has been pretty quiet, I’ve been distracted. I was recently diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. It’s not the arthritis you get as you get old or from an injury; it’s a destructive and painful auto-immune disease. And it can be all-consuming. Working with a great doctor on getting it under control, and am now able to pick back up where I left off on a few things. Like this blog.

Won’t clutter this blog with it, if you’re interested in that journey, head over to

Back to your regularly scheduled program.

Just another day at MalaMala

The day begins just before sunrise.

As we leave camp we notice some impala all standing at attention and looking the same way. We head that way to investigate.

Look in the river. Look around the river in the bush. No go.

In comes the call, lions. Not just lions but a new pride in the making. An established pride of three lionesses seems to have joined forces with a pride that started with two males and a female. However, the female has been shunned and was no longer with the group. The lions, five of them, were lounging on the sand alongside the river just a short distance away.

When we arrive we see the two males sleeping. The lionesses are near but one is wide awake, like she’s on guard duty. We get a good position for photos. Our hope is that as the sun rises from behind us, the lions will go into the river for a drink and we’ll get good photos head on with the fresh morning sun lighting up their faces.

One of the other rangers sees a leopard across the river. That would be behind us. We do not see the leopard. But the lioness on guard sees the leopard.

She begins her walk over, going right through the water in front of us.

Copyright Julie Yack

The other lionesses follow her. After the three lionesses cross, the two males join.

Copyright Julie Yack

They have found the leopard and have her trapped high in a tree.

Copyright Julie Yack

The lions decide it’s time to sleep now. Under the tree, keeping the leopard trapped.

We wait. We watch.

The lions move around a little.

The leopard grumbles and hisses.

The lions move around a little more.

The leopard grumbles and hisses more.

The dance continues for some time.

As long as the leopard is patient, she can wait out the lions. She is far too high in the tree for them to reach her.

We leave the scene and move along on a quest for more leopards, two young females had been spotted not far away. On the way we are distracted by a beautiful green bird. This bird sits high in the tree, in the perfect sunlight. When it takes off it performs a loop and returns to the same branch. This little bird is not only photogenic, it’s cooperative.


We drive a little more and decide to stop for coffee and biscotti. We enjoy a hot cup while keeping an eye on the river. There is no danger, but who knows when an elephant might decide to cross the water, always great to watch.

From there we head back to the continued saga of the lions and the leopard. The monkeys are hollering. They want anyone that can hear to know that there’s some big predators here and they mean business.

Enter a herd of thirsty buffalo. The only thing between them and the water is lions. And a leopard.

A few of the male buffalo decide to bicker, throwing horns and grunting, dirt filling the air.

The buffalo move closer to the lions. The lions start to wake.

The leopard remains high in the tree.

The buffalo move closer to the lions. The lions are on their feet.

The leopard carefully watching from above. Safe.

The buffalo move in, the lions run for the water. Dirt flying.

Lions growling. Buffalo grunting.

Copyright Julie Yack

After the lions are gone, and the buffalo are settled the leopard cautiously begins climbing down the tree. She looks around and goes down a branch. She checks for the lions’ location, goes down another two branches. She can’t be too careful. She makes her way to the ground, continuously looking around her for any chance of danger. Once she reaches the ground she slowly begins her walk to safety, walking and looking over her shoulder for dangers behind her. Once she is sure the dangers are gone, she runs from the area.

With that drama over, we return to the road in hopes of catching a glimpse of the Bicycle Crossing leopard. His nickname is The Godfather. He has the largest territory of any leopard in this part of the world. He is big and tough, and at 14 years old a little past his prime. We had seen him last night and heard he is still in the same area. He likely has a kill that we didn’t see and will remain there to eat.

On the way we receive word that there’s another male leopard in the area. They are aware of one another and hissing and growling.

Could there be a battle?

We speed up, but then must take a detour. There’s a rhinoceros sleeping in the road.

When we arrive we see the challenger, in the sand and reeds of the river. It’s a younger male, but he looks tough. Broad shoulders and nostrils flaring.

We hear The Godfather grunting and hissing.

Both leopards move around a little, but still do not approach each other.

One goes in for a drink.

The other moves around and repositions.

They continue this for some time while we watch and wait. Cameras poised and at the ready.

The challenger goes in swiftly, not quite at a run. The Godfather does not engage in conflict.

The challenger goes back to walk in the sand and get some distance. He decides to lay down in the sand. He is alert, not resting one bit.

Then The Godfather gets up and hops down into the sand. He slowly walks toward his challenger. The challenger gets up and slowly walks toward The Godfather. They walk parallel to each other, sizing the other up to prepare for battle.

The Godfather makes his move and chases his challenger into the reeds. There is little fighting that occurs and the challenger is nowhere to be found.

With his head high The Godfather returns to his meal. Swagger intact.

Copyright Julie Yack

Curious about the lions we had seen we head back toward them and find them all sleeping at the river. The males on the big cool rock. The females are waterside on the sand.

Copyright Julie Yack

We decide to head back to camp and on our way see a beautiful roller in the tree and snap a couple of quick photos. The drive as over.

Copyright Julie Yack

It was time for breakfast.

That one more thing you need to be successful in CRM

I have often been asked what we need to teach our students to make them successful in the long term. Like, EXACTLY, what do we need to teach them? There is not a specific class to be named. There is not a skill I can name.

Our students need an employable skill on graduation day. Plus one more thing. It can be almost anything. It can be fluency in another language. It can be art. It can be another science. One more thing. Now, we will explore jobs and ways you can make a difference with those obscure things that give you passion. The one more thing.

My story…I love solving puzzles. Not here’s a picture cut up into little pieces, put it back together type of puzzles. I love the logic problems, anything that makes you think creatively to solve something. I am also a 3-dimensional thinker. So when I am driving around a city, in my head it’s a 3-d map/globe that I am moving around in. So the chance to creatively solve a business problem with my 3-dimensional thinking makes me a more valuable resource. When I am designing CRM, in my head it’s a 3-d mapping of the architecture. How does this piece fit with that piece? Is this the right relationship to this other thing? That crazy virtual board of things from Minority Report? That’s almost like what I have in my head when building a new schema.

Chris is a successful CRM professional. His job includes lots and lots of customer support. His hobby is restoring old cars. How could those possibly be related? The process of getting into the details, figuring out how things work, cleaning them for better appearance, find solutions to missing parts and correct factory finishes, all make him better in his Dynamics Job in how he has to complete discovery, research, often cleanup messes, and revise for better user adoption, find ISVS, and provide easier upgrade and maintenance paths. The creative thinking and attention to detail needed for the car work directly match with what’s needed to help and troubleshoot customers with their own different and creative CRM implementations.

Gustaf has a slightly different view of how his dedication to Aikido helps him in his work as a CRM consultant. The basic philosophy of Aikido is to embrace the force of the attacker and move the attacker in circles to the direction of your choice, ideally without them even knowing it. How does that relate to Dynamics work? In his words, “When working with a customer and I find that their processes, for instance sales process, is backward or sub optimal, instead of confronting them head on and telling them that you have to change, your process is bad. It is often more efficient to try to listen, understand, embrace how they work and why and the slowly try to change their perspective so that they end up where you want them. It can only work if I first establish a firm base of trust for the people I work with which is similar to a firm stance which will be the center of the circle of the movement.”

What creative skills do you have that will help you in your career?

How to get the most out of the fall conferences for CRM- Convergence Barcelona!

The xRMVirtual session on Tuesday September 1 had to be cancelled last minute because of technical and audio difficulties.  Here we offer you some insights from CRM MVP Ramon Tebar Bueno on how to get the most out of Convergence in Barcelona this November.  Romon’s blog can be found here:

There are three primary areas to focus on at Convergence; Community, Sessions and of course, the wonderful location in Barcelona.

To get the most out of your time with the CRM community you can focus on networking, the customer experience center and the customer excellence awards.  It is here that you meet and network with other like-minded professionals.  You never know when you might need someone with an obscure specialty to help with a project down the road.  The customer experience center is sometimes called the expo hall.  This is where you can interact with vendors and Microsoft to learn more about options that are available to help you meet your customer needs.  The customer excellence awards are a great opportunity to be inspired by teams that are successful in the Dynamics arena.

The sessions are provided by both customer and Microsoft.  You can learn about individual solutions from a successful implementation or directly from the team at Microsoft about exciting new features.

And now to Barcelona.  Take an extra day or two to explore the area.  This part of Spain is beautiful and worth exploring.

click here to register

How to get the most out of the fall conferences for CRM- eXtreme CRM in San Diego

Edited to add:  The good folks at the conference have extended a discount to our membership. Use the codes below for special pricing and thank to the good people at eXtreme.

Standard Conference Discount Code  - Earlybirdsandiego
Executive Exchange Discount Code - Earlybirdexecexch

Hurry and register, the discounts expire September 14!

The xRMVirtual session on Tuesday September 1 had to be cancelled last minute because of technical and audio difficulties. So here is some information from  Chief Executive Officer of eXtreme, LLC, Christy Spokely and Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of eXtreme LLC, John Verdon, on how to get the most out of eXtreme CRM 2015 in San Diego from Nov 17-19th. You can check out more by clicking here

When you come to eXtremeCRM 2015 San Diego you will gain new business connections and new insight on the upcoming release. You will spend a week connecting with peers, Microsoft leaders, industry experts and gain new business connections along with a lot of information.  You will find value whether you are sales, marketing, consulting, technical sales or development. Our training is designed to fit every role.

eXtremeCRM is one-of-a-kind opportunity for participants to immerse themselves in everything CRM.  The conference is your chance to increase your knowledge, refine your thinking, and connect with your colleagues and with others from Microsoft. Whether you are preparing for the upcoming release or have questions, being part of eXtremeCRm will help with that. So come be a part of our conference in sunny San Diego at eXtremeCRM!

How to get the most from the fall conferences for CRM- CRMUG Summit

The xRMVirtual session on Tuesday September 1 had to be cancelled last minute because of technical and audio difficulties.  Here is some insight from the Director of CRMUG Tony Stein on how to get the most out of CRMUG in Reno-Tahoe October 13-16, 2015. You can find Tony’s blog here

CRMUG Goals for the 2015 Summit are to demonstrate the VALUE that everyone brings to the community, to provide top notch CONTENT, education and programming, to help our COMMUNITY grow, raise AWARENESS of the growing community, provide a strong NETWORKING environment and of course, to have FUN. CRMUG’s summit attendance growth has risen since 2008. From 113 to 750 and we are still growing.

There are many different job roles that attend CRMUG summit. To name a few who attend there are CRM support, IT, Business Analysts, CEO, Marketing and more. We are the largest Microsoft Dynamics CRM User training conference, By registering before Sept. 15 you can save money, go to there are half and full day course available. Classes are filling up fast.

Also enjoy listening to Keynote speaker George Kourounis deliver an inspiring address to kick off the summit on Wednesday morning. If you choose to stay longer in beautiful Lake Tahoe, there are exclusive lodging deals available for CRMUG summit attendees!! Hope to see you there!!

Denver Dev Day October 23 call for speakers


The previous Denver Dev Day (D3) was the third D3 and it was awesome. With more than a 75% attendance record of 150+ attendees, we blew the windows out with awesome speakers and our first all-day conference. The word is out and D3 is the premier fully community-led developer conference in Colorado. Twice a year, D3 brings some of the best local and national speakers to the stage to lead developers into the high-tech and fast-moving future of software development.


It’s time for the next Denver Dev Day! On October 23, 2015 we will hold the fourth D3 with better tracks, speakers and content than ever. This is a big deal and it’s free to attendees. That’s right, one of the best conferences is open and free to developers on any platform and at any skill level. Come learn something new, hone what you know, or network with great developers from all around our community. D3 is a great experience, super-charged with community volunteers just like you.


Been working on some cool tech lately? Maybe it’s time to take your learning and share it. If you’re a regular speaker or just considering your first presentation, Denver Dev Day is the right place for you. Our session topics are open; that means you can submit any topic where you feel strong and have a passion to share and teach. We also have lightning talks where you can present more pinpointed presentations in a much shorter time. We’re flexible because we want to get you in front of your peers to share the wealth – making others better ultimately makes you better, too.


When you’re picking your topic, start with what you know well. Everyone knows that the teacher learns far more than the student, so pick a topic you love – your passion will come out on stage as you start to present. After you’ve picked your topic, pick your timeframe. Most talks are 45 minutes, but only you can decide what is best: Lightning talk? Extra-long talk? Finally submit your presentation idea online at Feel free to submit more than one topic, too. If one topic doesn’t get selected (maybe because it was already submitted elsewhere), maybe your other one(s) will.

Submit at:


As always, we don’t pay our speakers or have the funds to pay for travel or expenses. That being said, starting last Denver Dev Day we have begun to provide a “thank you” gift to each speaker based on the number of sessions you present. This will barely cover your dinner, so don’t get too excited. But we want to do what we can – even if our resources are limited – to extend our gratitude for your willingness to prepare and bring your best for our local, developer community. D3 is for and by our community; this event, with your help, has helped establish Colorado as a homerun location for developers.


Denver Dev Day is free. The only working funds we have are those from our sponsors and gifts from our volunteers and attendees. This makes sponsors very important to us. If your company or a company you know would be a good fit at Denver Dev Day, please make an introduction. We have several levels of sponsorship to find the perfect fit for any company wanting to gain visibility from D3 or contribute to our local, developer community at large. If your company or a company you know would be a good fit, please move quickly so we can make a connection with them.

Sponsor info:


We are not yet selling tickets for Denver Dev Day. Our last D3 opened ticket sales 2 weeks before the event and we sold out in the first week. No question about it, this is going to happen again. We don’t have a venue that can scale past 150 attendees at this point, so we will continue to constrain ticket sales for the next D3 in October. I say that to say this, watch for more information – tickets will go on sale (remember, they are free) sometime in October and it is 100% first-come-first-serve. We want ever developer in Colorado to come to D3, but we can only fit 150 in the building. Should you know of another, larger venue, we are always open to vetting venues for our next event.


These types of events are products of people with passion. We have many volunteers in leadership planning our next event already. We have many volunteers on the ground during our event. And we have many volunteers speaking or managing speakers for the event. Things don’t just happen on their own. Real people do real work and we are grateful for the small army of hard working volunteers who sacrifice and contribute to make our local developer community better and events like this successful.


Questions about speaking?
Questions about volunteering?
Questions about sponsorships?

Web site:
Email: [email protected]