As we speak I am sitting in the Microsoft Technology Summit, an invitation-only event in Redmond. We've invited people from all over the world, people who are not very close to the "Microsoft community" as that term is traditionally understood, to come in and begin a conversation with a number of leaders from Microsoft. People who've written books on Ruby, Java User Group leads, a board member from Mozilla.org, government officials. Maybe they don't even want me to advertise this.
Bill Hilf just finished a session about the open source software lab at Microsoft, and what we do there. That certainly spurred lots of questions. Now speaking is Rick Rashid, director of MS Research, the basic research lab at Microsoft. He is showing some really cool stuff involving computer vision, large scale but low-cost digitized touch-sensitive screens, and interactive systems. Anyway, for the full event, it is a very dense and engaging agenda.
The event is mostly about creating a dialogue between Microsoft and "outsiders", about how we can better engage with their communities, how we can be a better corporate citizen, build better channels for feedback, and so on. And a big part of that is Interop with disparate systems.
The event goes for 3 days.