Well, we’re finally here, on the ground in LA at PDC. After months of speculation, chatter and building curiosity about Microsoft’s next move in the cloud space, we’ve officially gone on record with the details.  It’s always interesting to take a quick look back at what’s been said up to this point; I have to say, some folks got it right and some were way off. My hope is that the details Ray Ozzie and Bob Muglia provided in today’s keynote kick off a fact-based ‘round two’ of these industry discussions.

 

And while we’re all ready to celebrate, I want to take a moment to re-emphasize what a critical day this is.   It’s not just critical for Microsoft, but for partners, developers, consumers, IT Pros and technology watchers alike.  We all know that we’re in the midst of another paradigm shift; it’s time to carve out your place in making it real and to move forward. I’ll start: My commitment is to do my part in helping develop and bring to market the best possible solution in the Azure Services Platform. This means continuing to have conversations with partners and customers early on, and pushing the boundaries of transparency to ensure the feedback we’re collecting is based on a fully informed view.

 

So, let’s start with a few of the most important facts from today’s keynote. There are a host of sources live today that can provide all the nitty gritty details.

 

·         Ray announced the Azure Services Platform today. The Azure Services Platform is an internet-scale cloud computing and services platform hosted in Microsoft data centers, which provides an operating system and a set of developer services that can be used individually or together.  It gives developers the choice to build web applications; applications running on connected devices, PCs, or servers; or hybrid solutions offering the best of both worlds.

·         The Azure Services Platform consists of the following components: Windows Azure, Live Services, SQL Services, .NET Services, SharePoint Services, and Dynamics CRM Services.  

·         There are CTPs available today, as well as other important technologies that will foster innovation in the world of application development and help to bridge on-premise and cloud domains, such as “Oslo” and the “Dublin” app server enhancements I recently detailed in my blog. Folks at the show today should begin taking a look at all of these pieces.

 

My group will continue to work on the .NET Services and Windows Azure, as well as “Oslo” (tools, repository and language for modeling), “Dublin”, BizTalk Server and Windows Communication Foundation,  Windows WorkFlow Foundation.  Thus, we will have our foot in both cloud and premises investments, and those technologies that serve to unite the two: the ‘+’ in S+S, if you will.  .NET Services, which was previously the BizTalk Services incubation, includes hosted workflow execution, a service bus for communicating across applications and services, and access control for securing applications. These hosted services allow you to easily create federated applications that span from on-premises environments to the cloud.   “Oslo”, which we recently provided more details about, was highlighted in the keynote today as the core of Microsoft’s modeling investments for both cloud and premises.  We also committed to furthering our interoperability efforts around the declarative language, “M”, by including it under Microsoft’s Open Specification Promise. “Dublin”, “BizTalk Server” and WCF + WF are also big topics at this year’s PDC, so be sure to check out the sessions to hear more.

 

I look across all these pieces, and I’m incredibly excited and passionate about what’s to come.  I feel confident that our investments in innovation, including both new and existing technologies, are the right ones and will help our customers and partners with more choice, interoperability, better security & reliability, simpler management & planning and truly breathe new life into today’s investments.

 

Now, on to day 2!