As it says on the main countdown page, my name is Scott Ladewig, and I created the TechEd Countdown site which has now evolved into the Ignite Countdown site. Why? I'm what you might call a Microsoft TechEd Ignite enthusiast. For the last couple of years, I've been tweeting the number of days until TechEd every Monday. One thing led to another, and in 2013 this site and Twitter account became a reality. With the evolution of Microsoft TechEd into Microsoft Ignite, I've refreshed the site and Twitter account.

If you're interested in finding out more about me, check out my blog and follow me on Twitter.

I worked as an IT Pro for 30 years, primarily in Microsoft environments, before retiring in 2022. In 2002 I attended my first Microsoft technical conference, and I've never looked back. As you can see from the timeline, I went thirteen years before missing Microsoft Ignite for the first time in 2016. I was able to attend virtually however using a Beam bot supplied by Event Presence, so I think it still counts (with an asterisk). Conferences come and go, but Microsoft TechEd Ignite was always one of the best opportunities to get the latest news from Microsoft, connect with the product teams, get hands-on training, and network with friends and colleagues from around the world.

I hope you find the site and its related activities useful and fun. Please follow and spread the word by sharing this site with your community.

My Microsoft Conference Timeline

MEC — Anaheim (final MEC until 2012)
TechEd — Dallas
TechEd — San Diego
TechEd — Orlando
TechEd — Boston
TechEd — Orlando
TechEd — Orlando
TechEd — Los Angeles (Joined the Krewe of TechEd)
TechEd — New Orleans
TechEd — Atlanta
TechEd — Orlando
MEC — Orlando
MMS — Las Vegas (final Microsoft MMS)
TechEd — New Orleans
MEC — Austin (final MEC)
TechEd — Houston
Ignite — Chicago
Ignite — Atlanta (virtually using an Event Presence Beam bot)
Ignite — Orlando
Ignite — Orlando
Ignite — Orlando
2020 FL
Ignite — Virtual
2021 SP
Ignite — Virtual
2021 FL
Ignite — Virtual

Credits & Acknowledgements

Here are some resources I used to build the site and support the Twitter account.

  • Bootstrap is the front-end framework I used to create this site. The first version of was put together by hand, and while I learned a few new things about CSS and responsive design, the main lesson was to never build a site from scratch like that. Bootstrap simplifies the whole process, and while there is a learning curve, it's pretty short. Give it a try.
  • Font Awesome provides 369 scalable vector icons in a single font. Easy to use, and they look great.
  • Bootstrap CDN calls itself the Recommended CDN for Bootstrap and Font Awesome. Add a couple of links to your pages and start delivering the CSS and JavaScript via MaxCDN and their global content delivery network. Probably not going to make a difference on this, but it is free and every little bit helps.
  • IFTTT is handling the daily tweets and updating the Twitter profile picture for @IgniteCountdown. I'm running a script on my server which generates the daily photos and sends an email message with the day's photo as an attachment to IFTTT. The body of the email message is tweeted with the attached image.

There are also some people to thank.

  • I've modified images that Microsoft has posted on the Microsoft Ignite website and Facebook pages to use as templates for the countdown images.
  • Mike Rudy (@MikeRudy) inspired me to expand my bare bones countdown web page and setup a daily tweet after he launched his How Many Days Until Star Wars website and @DaysTilStarWars Twitter account to countdown the days until the next Star Wars film is released.