Conference Attendance and Microsoft Program Managers

Reading the blog of my favorite B0rg cheerleader I came across link to a post by Pete Cole where he disputes Scoble's assertion that Microsoft developers and program managers will be at conferences like PDC giving out their contact information to attendees who'd like to contact them.

From my experience at this year's TechEd this is exactly the case. If you were a developer interested in XML or XML Web Services at TechEd 2003 you could walk up to one of the booths during the "Ask the Experts" timeslots [which occured every day] and talk to PMs working on the core XML APIs and technolgies (like myself and my boss), the PMs responsible for the XML Web Services stuff (like Doug, Steve and Yasser), MSDN content strategists for XML Web Services (like Matt), as well as devs and test folks who work technologies like SQLXML, W3C XML Schema and XSLT.

The entire point of Microsoft taking us off working for a week and sending us to the conference was exactly so we could hang out wioth customers, exchange contact info and obtain feedback [as well as give talks].

Funny enough, half the time we were just standing idly around the booth with no one coming to talk to us which worked out fine for the few folks who did talk to us because they tended to get our undivided attention. For instance, Tomas Restrepo walked up to me with a number of complaints about our core XML APIs like XPathNavigator, XmlWriter and XmlDocument which I took to heart and shared with folks like Joshua when I got back from TechEd. Needless to say the three primary issues he complained about will be fixed in the next version of the .NET Framework.


The Mozilla Foundation: Half-Empty or Half-full?

I read the recent news about AOLs firing of the core of the Netscape team and donating their salaries $2 million to start up the Mozilla foundation. It seems most people on hearing the news had a cup is half empty or cup is half full reaction. Slashdot posted two stories about the event from each perspective
The Web Standards project has a number of editorials about the recent events. It seems they've taken a half full perspective on things which is good.


Ebay and Blogging Technologies

After following some links from some blog I can't even remember I ended up on this post about posting to your eBay from your blog posting software and eBay providing individualized RSS feeds for buyers and sellers.

The first idea seems like a good one although I'd quibble about the implementation choices. It would make more sense for eBay to consider exposing a blog APi interface so blog posting tools would just consider posting to eBay as if they were posting to any other blog than it would be to expect a blog posting tool to be specially tailored to work with eBay by supporting the eBay API.

However looking at the actual description of the API it doesn't seem to overlap much with what a blog posting API would look like. Of course, if the blog posting API was designed as just being about sending and receiving extensible XML messages then the differences aren't as stark as you think.

The other idea of providing individualized RSS feeds for buyers and sellers is actually a pretty good idea although I wonder why the poster thinks eBay shouldn't charge for this as a value added service.


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Disclaimer: The above comments do not represent the thoughts, intentions, plans or strategies of my employer. They are solely my opinion.

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