Before .NET was available, Visual C# MVP Christian Nagel worked with COM, ActiveX and OLE having done several COM / ATL / C++ workshops. “One attendee asked if we could share our work experience from time to time. I thought, yes, that’s a good idea.” That is why he started the COM User Group Austria in Vienna in 1997, which later became .NET User Group Austria. Because of his immense experience Christian was contacted to help start other user groups in Austria. Christian also founded INETA Europe (International .NET Association) a non-profit organization supporting Microsoft developer user groups.
Christian is passionate about learning anything new, and loves to support others by sharing his knowledge. “I try to work very early with upcoming technologies in order to find out what could be important in the future,” Christian said..
Christian started as a technical reviewer for COM/ATL books. In the early days of .NET, he started writing himself. His first book published was Professional C#, the first edition available with Beta 2 of .NET 1.0. Currently he is working on the ninth edition, an update for Visual Studio 2013.
“Despite the extra effort, for me it’s still fun to work with new things. It is not enough to have the code just running,” he said. Christian often asks himself: “Could this be done differently, what’s the best way to do this?” Christian often hears that he has a special talent to explain new technologies and complex topics easily.
Christian runs his own company, CN Innovation. He offers training, coaching and consulting for software developers and architects with Microsoft technologies. “User groups, books, apps, training, consulting - I see all this as gear that match together,” said Christian.
Before Christian became MVP, he was already awarded Microsoft Regional Director.
As a Microsoft RD, Christian supported Microsoft developer events, evangelized with software developers, and provided feedback to Microsoft teams. “I have been an MVP for 10 years. How time flies!”
Christian is still as active as he was before being awarded as an MVP. But technologies and tools have changed. “And of course connections to Microsoft. Since I became an MVP, there are much better channels than we had been before.”
This year Christian presented at BASTA! conferences in Darmstadt and Mainz, at TechEd in New Orleans and Madrid, at ADC and BigDay in Vienna. He is constantly working on updates for his books and new books, moreover he is creating many samples for his blog. He blogs on thinktecture.com and cninnovation.com. The organization of the user group and budget of INETA Europe also requires lots of time and engagement.
The first time he attended the MVP Global Summit he was not an MVP but Regional Director. “This was definitely a long time ago as I have been an MVP for ten years. It is always exciting to meet Microsoft teams and to learn about plans for the future and to provide feedback.”
Christian presented his newest two Windows Store apps at the MVP Showcase event at the Summit. The apps are Windows Store apps created with XAML and C #, accessing Windows Azure Mobile Services. Both use authentication with a Microsoft account, SQL Azure and Blob Storage. “The first app is a Menu Card app for restaurants. This is a great example of a business app. Restaurants can manage their own menu cards including images for the menus, share menus with other apps (e.g. email ), and integrate a JSON feed with their own websites. I had the idea for this project because my wife runs a restaurant. Every week I see the difficulties in creating the menu plan.” Besides functionality, an appealing UI and a great user experience are important to Christian. Users must be able to efficiently work with the app.
His second MVP Showcase app is a book app. He recognized that while writing and publishing books, it is no longer feasible to keep up with the release cycle of the products you are writing on. So Christian created a preview of his book app “Developing Windows Store Apps” which will be available soon in the store. Updates can be integrated continuously. The book app further contains interactive elements that would have never been possible in printed form.