This morning I read with joy a report from UncleNick that Michael Kleef (another Aussie Microsoft Employee from Perth) got the attention of Steve Ballmer and most of the technical field staff – by asking a piercing question based on the handling of some very local timezone (daylight savings) issues.
I smiled quietly to myself for several reasons. Firstly Kleefy’s reported ‘knee trembler’ at the hands of Mr Ballmer reminded me of how I felt when I was granted an audience with Brian Valentine (then the head honcho for Exchange Server) after spending extended time with the design team of ‘platinum’ (Exchange 2000). I was trying to explain how fundamentally broken the design of any product that buries transient data inside every device requiring ‘patches’ for updates was. In fact, I was known as the whinging Aussie with the timezone problem.
So Kleefy, while you have ‘the ear of caeser’, chase down Daniel McPherson in MSFT and get a copy of the ‘Daylight Savings’ whitepaper. If you read and understand it you will realise that ALL MSFT products need to find a way to update timezone information from the cloud automatically.
Secondly, it felt good to see new connections being made in my old stomping ground. I could almost feel the Seattle chill, and envisage the Pike Street markets while reading Uncle Nick’s post. Great to see him hooking up with his new team-mates o/s. Just last night I was in touch with Amsterdam based MSFTee Daniel McPherson – the very same Daniel who worked with me on a ‘TimeZone and Daylight Savings’ white paper when he was a humble intern in Adelaide in the late 90’s. So UncleNick, Kleefy, you guys should hook up with DanMc!
Here is a personal angle on all this that is interestng to me:
– I was Daniel’s advice to follow podcasting that convinced me to leave Microsoft and follow the path I am now on
– It was Kleefy’s blog that showed me the power of blogging, links and RSS connections
– Frank Arrigo gave me my first ‘google juice’ and taught me how to shepherd my flock
– Frank’s appearance on Cameron Rielly’s ‘Gday world’ podcast had a lot to do with the fact that I am in a conference call with Cam and the TPN hosts as I type this post, getting ready to jump on a plane to Sydney to present on podcasting at upconf2007.
Funny old world eh.
Fang – Mike Seyfang