Ask not what the country can do for you but what you can do for the country – JFK! Extending this analogy a bit further, I think it’s time we took some of that spirit in helping companies develop better software!

Here's what you can do to stop 'Global Whining',

· Provide Feedback (Esp when something fails and that pop up comes requesting you to send some information to MS)

· Participate in Beta’s

· Participate in Installation boot camps 

· Participate in Community Planning Sessions

· And last but not least – By working closely with the User Research Groups which will help us design and build the right software/keyboard/joystick etc. And pertaining to this here’s the How/Where/When/Etc details…

How do I enroll:  Sign up online at our main site http://www.microsoft.com/UserResearch or for a direct link to the IT Pro form: https://www.microsoft.com/usability/enrollment_ITPros.htm.

(Participants need to be U.S. citizens.)

Where:  Most of our studies take place on our main campus in Redmond, WA.  We also use remote testing, electronic surveys, and site visits that are not location-specific so we encourage everyone to sign up regardless of your location.

When:  User Research at Microsoft is ongoing. We run studies every day of the year except major holidays. IT Pro and Developer studies are usually conducted Monday through Friday but we are always as flexible as possible with our participants since we know they have busy schedules. A User Research study usually lasts 2 hours or less.

WIIFM (What’s In It For Me): Have you ever had a frustrating experience with software? This is your chance to give feedback and to make a real impact on the functionality and usability of products before they get released. Your input can improve the experience for millions of future users. In addition, we’ll give you your choice of software from a long list of retail Microsoft hardware and software including Visual Studio, Windows Vista, Office 2007, games, keyboards, and much more.

Now, go click on that link above and help us help you!

Go ahead and Realize the Power Of One!

-Mithun Dhar