Archive for the ‘Give-aways’ Category


Solstice Special – beat the rush to registration

Geek Gatherings is adding an incentive to get you to register early. In addition to all the perks you get when registering before July 1st (a $125 discount, a free pre-conference or post-conference session, and a chance for a $150 scholarship or Stonefield Query SDK), one person who registers before June 21st wins a tablet!

The winner will select one of the following:

  • iPad 2 with 16GB of memory (value of $399)
  • Kindle Fire (value of $199)
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (value of $399)

Winner is selected on July 3, 2012 from the list of people registered before June 21st.


I have long been a user of the fine SQL Server developer tools produced by Red Gate. My all-time favorite is SQL Compare. Red Gate also has sponsored the Southwest Fox Conference which I am an organizer. I have attended the last two Business of Software conferences co-hosted by Neil Davidson who is the CEO of Red Gate. And I participate in the Friends of Red Gate program, which allows me to provide feedback to the product groups at Red Gate. So you might say I have a nice relationship with the company.

Red Gate made a recent announcement in an open letter to the .NET Community, which detailed some future changes to the product with respect to the licensing and most importantly that it was no longer going to be free. I watched the reaction in the .NET Community via Twitter and on some blogs, and was not surprised how many developers were reacting. Developers are notorious frugal and love free stuff, and complained loudly how Red Gate was cheating them and going back on their word/intention of always having a free version.

Any developer with few exceptions, who makes a living developing software and finds use for a tool like .NET Reflector core to their development experience certainly can afford $35 for the standard edition. Here in the USA we are talking a few pizzas or a week’s worth of Starbucks coffee. I have talked with numerous .NET developers over the last few years including people who work with me and they find this tool indispensable. The top of the line version which allows you to step through third-party assembly code is only $95. To me, as a business owner who likes when our company delivers solid software, $95 is a steal to gain functionality like this.

I emailed one of my contacts at Red Gate giving my view point. I am in the slightly unique position of having a line of commercial and some free tools that I make available to the developer community. I have experienced the developers who complain that I charge for tools that have some premium features and how I should make the pro versions free to everyone. I explained to Red Gate that they can expect some heated posts and tweets. But in the big picture, people should understand that the survival of a product for the cost of a few pizzas is minor in the big scheme of things.

As a thank you for my feedback Red Gate has given me some .NET Reflector VSPro licenses to give-away. This came to me as a total surprise.

I gave away 10 licenses to members of the Detroit Area Fox User Group last Thursday. I have 10 licenses to give-away at the Michigan Great Lakes .NET Group on Wednesday, and I have 10 more licenses to give-away here via my blog. This is close to $3000 of software. As you can see, Red Gate is a super generous company.


[Edit 15-Mar-2011] All licenses have been given away.

So if you are doing any .NET development, or expect to be doing some .NET development and would like a FREE copy of .NET Reflector VSPro please send me an email: DotNetReflector AT with the subject: “.NET Reflector Please”. The first 10 people who I get an email from will get instructions on how they can get their license returned to them via email. If you don’t get a response from me in 24 hours, consider yourself too late. I am fairly certain these licenses will not be around for long.

One license per individual. All tax considerations are the responsibility of the winner (consult your tax accountant for specific details). No employees of White Light Computing, or any family members of the employees of White Light Computing are eligible. Your mileage may vary, some settling may occur during shipping. Not valid outside of planet Earth. All decisions made by me are final.


Thanks Red Gate for the great tools and the terrific support of the developer community, you guys rock.