Someone once showed me a diagram that looked something like the one at right. Most of us spend our time over in the red circle doing stuff someone will pay us to do. If you're lucky, you spend your time in-between them, doing stuff you're good at also. Sometimes something comes along that puts you right in that sweet spot and you have to go for it. Will this be my dream job? Could be, I don't know, but if it's not, it might get me a lot closer.
What's this mean for this blog and the podcast?
Fortunately, nothing. The blog is still mine. The podcast is still Carl's and mine, and while having a Blue Badge will get me access to more interesting people to interview (Hopefully some smarties in Microsoft Research. Maybe Bill, or that elusive Ray Ozzie interview...he's only turned me down twice, and he was very nice about it) as well as, hopefully, some exclusives. I'm still going to talk about what I want to talk about. ScottGu and team were very cool and explicit that the blog and podcast are mine.
Will the voice of this blog change?
If it does, then I'm doing something wrong. I've been an advocate for some things Microsoft for years, while other things, not so much. That's why I'm going to work for the DevDiv (Developer Division) and not Marketing. I might be a fanboy, but I'm not evil.
All the blog stuff, the articles, the podcasting, screencasts, etc, that I've done over the years have been done on my own time, usually very late at night for no money save what I can get from Google Adsense and a few advertisers that pay for my hosting.
When someone is a starving artist, they paint for the love of it. They starve, and paint, and starve and paint, and lament that no one will pay them for their art. Then one day, a benefactor comes along and says, "You're brilliant! I'll give you $ if you paint me 10 more just like it, with these small changes, and have those done by Tuesday, m'kay?" And the painter sometimes regrets it. Everyone that I've talked to has been totally up front and cool about things and while my job will be to Spread the Good Word, it's not like I wasn't already doing that anyway. However, no one will be editorializing my content and I'll likely get into trouble occasionally.
What's my job?
The HR title is a nice generic one like "Program Manager" (I was thinking to get this on my business card - Scott Hanselman - progman.exe, what do you think? ;) ) but in essence I'm going to talk about .NET and Visual Studio - the whole of DevDiv, including ASP.NET, WinForms, WPF, Silverlight, CLR, LINQ, IIS, DLR, .NET CF, everything. This means videos, screencasts, podcasts, maybe some Channel 9 stuff, doing articles, wikis, speaking at conferences and large events (invite me!), creating starter kits, samples, as well as my regular hobby of plugging things into other things. I'll also be working on understanding our community (that means you, Dear Reader) thr ough conversations, visits, and trying to bring some big picture analysis (the kind of stuff I do now, again) to the .NET 3.5 and .NET Futures stack. I am also obsessed with getting my new Apple Newton Messagepad 2000 to sync with Outlook 2007, so watch for that.
What about Corillian/Checkfree?
The combination of CheckFree and Corillian promises to change the way people manage their money online, and I gave careful and serious consideration to the opportunities I had to continue to contribute to that vision. There's rarely a good time to leave a company, especially one that you love, but this was as close to a "it's not you, it's me" kind of breakup as one can have. I've been spreading the Computer Zen on the side for five years now. I've been speaking as part of INETA, doing the MVP and RD thing for years. While there's huge opportunity at Corillian/Checkfree right now, the bosses (and my friends) made it clear that I could be a big part of the future, this opportunity just happened (at Foo Camp, actually) to come together in such a cool way that I decided I wanted to move out of my comfort zone and take a leap of faith.
I've grown to know ScottGu and many of the folks in MSFT Building 42 and have decided that they are good people. Sure, there are some odd decisions that are made in the big house, but now I'll be on the inside, trying to make sense of them, and hopefully I'll be able to influence things for the better.
Stewardship is defined many ways, but I like these two:
"Taking responsibility for the survival and well-being of something that is valued, such as a natural resource" and "an individual's responsibility to exercise care over possessions entrusted to him or her"
If you trust me, you know that I'm not evil, and that I'm going to Microsoft in order to bring additional trust into the relationship between developer and platform. There needs to be a sense of stewardship and a deep valuing of the trust that developers put into their tools.
All this said, I've gone ahead, Dear Reader, by creating a Hanselborg image for you, in the interest of saving you the time of doing it yourself.
I now return you to your regularly scheduled blog.
Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.
While I personally have issue with things done by some parts of Microsoft, but I have nothing but respect for ScottGu and the people in his team, they're one of the teams hitting home runs at the moment, from my point of view.
I'm very excited about this opportunity for you. Congrats and I think Microsoft has gained a very valuable "resource" with you on their team. I look forward to your continued success and know that you bring a lot of MS's table. One thing I do look forward to hearing is about the time spent at the office. I've heard rumors (and they are just rumors) that it is a very tough balancing act between the ole' work/life balance. Please let us know how that all works out!
Either you changed your mind
this was a ploy to have alpha geeks step aside so you can sneak in.
you are now beta.
Congrats Man. Microsoft is lucky to have you. I think you made the right move. Just look at that Venn diagram! It's a no brainer!
Anyway, this is very exciting as now I feel like now the collective "we" have that insider angle again. Only this time we sent in a secret weapon...we sent an actual developer, not just a reporter. I just think this is fun, and a great thing.
Are you moving to the Redmond area or will you be doing the work from home thing?
I hope you don't stop contributing to the open source projects you participate and don't stop blogging about them. I know you probably won't be working with CCNET, n*, and friends, but I learned a lot about them from your blog posts.
Go put them straight in the rai.. err, the tracks again! :)
About the dream job picture: It looks like you are referring to Jim Collins (of "Good to Great" fame) Hedgehog concept: http://www.jimcollins.com/lab/hedgehog/p2.html
Also, not only will you be working for ScottGu, ScottHa will appear right next to it in the employee directory. :)
Congratulations :-) Really good news to see Microsoft could hire a great smart man like you ;-)
When do you start?
I had a feeling someone would try to snatch you up after you first announced the CheckFree/Corillian merger. Glad to see that ScottGu and his team recognized the great work you've done for the .NET community and want you to be part of their team.
This further validates my belief that MS is going through a renaissance with Ozzie at the helm. It's my hope that in 10 years we'll be talking about MS the same way people talk about Apple today. Good luck to you!
The game has just begun.
It's about time! What were they waiting for?
(Now, I'm gonna read the rest of the post)
P.S.: I think I'm more excited for you because of the fact you're gonna work with/for Scott Guthrie, than Microsoft.
I'm taking August off to work on a book, and my first day will be the first Tues in Sept, but I'll be mentally on the job all of Aug. ;)
Speaking of move, does that mean home shopping in Redmond or are you staying put where you are and ride sharing with BillG in MS Copter 1?
I've really been enjoying not just the technical bits and pieces I manage to glean from your posts, but also the wonderful flavor of your life.
I'm sure the family is proud of you and are highly supportive of this "dream-job" crossroads for you.
Good luck, and I'm looking forward to many more years of enthusiastic and valued posts from the ComputerZen guy himself!
In any case, after reading your blog for a while (the first post I read was about tool every developer must have (blog/MyGrokTalkTenToolsInTenMinutes.aspx)) - I am quite sure this is just another stop on the way to the world of freedom -- that is the free/open sourced software.
Of course, I like to think I talked you into it (4th comment):
'bout bloody time though! For the first couple of months that I got into reading blogs, I thought you were already working for MS...
Microsoft just made another great recruitment!
So the next thing is migrate your family to Office Live, Hotmail, Live Messenger, etc.... ;-)
It is extremely important to have open minded gurus onboard.
I hope you'll do even more than "Spread the Good Word", but also take part in the design and implementation process for future technologies.
Good luck on your new journey.
I've enjoyed both blog and podcasts and I'm sure you'll continue to bring us updated info in a great way. MS is lucky to have you, and indirectly as customers, (and tech geeks) so do we.
Congratulations (to us all).
Don't worry - your readers will keep you in check if you start going crazy. But perhaps you can be like the borg Hue - the one that had a mind of his own!!!
Congrats and have fun.
I believe it was some Dutch guy who said “All evangelism and no architecture makes Scott a dull boy”. Your day-to-day, “in the weeds” work with Corillian was what fueled the Hanselman content machine, so hopefully Building 42 will give you enough projects to keep that fire stoked.
Also, for the love of all that is holy, please help the MS Money team.
This is awesome! Congratulations!
I have been a frequent visitor to your blog and a listener to your podcast.
All I have to say is ... it was only time, and how fitting.
once again, Awesome, really!
Since not every pay is decent.
Congratulations, man! :) ScottGu is an awesome guy to work with, I'm sure (I met him once, he's great) so I'm sure you'll get into that dream job spot! :D
I'm very impressed with the people in Scott's organization (including Scott of course) and you will fit right in.
DevDiv is nice and they're very lucky to have you in the team.
And what happens to your contribution to dasBlog? I believe all those commits from glucopilot are yours, aren't they? Will you be allowed to contribute to open source projects if you want (at least in your own time)?
This is good news for both Scott and Microsoft.
If you walk into Vittorio B. say hi from me, he is definitely interesting for your show, but then people will probably have to reduce the speed to understand him :-P
Cheers, ow and do try to keep up your blog frequency :D
What about DasBlog? Is there a rule about not doing open source projects when working at MS? I seem to remember that's how MbUnit got passed on to other people, as well as Nunit.
Have fun! And don't forget to enjoy the honeymoon time of the first 3 months!
Working on the technologies is much more fun than working with them after they are released... I hope I'll have the same opportunity as well
Looks like the mind conditioning tricks that we learned @Foo from those Apple guys were effective :)
You're blog is 1 of 5 that I check daily.
Keep up the good work and I'm sure you'll do just fine at Microsoft.
You mentioned you're writing another book? Have you blogged about this before?
Congrats and welcome aboard Scott.
GM, Community Support and MVP Program
Congratulations, you are coming into an exciting part of Microsoft at a perfect time (which I'm sure you already know). I've only been at Microsoft since last September and I still remember giggling a bit a year ago when people asked if I'd ever work at Microsoft, it's been a great personal and professional experience so far, perhaps the best of my career. You'll be working with a bunch of smart and talented people and you'll be able to hit that sweet spot that you've so elegantly described in your post. There aren't too many companies that let you do that. I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time here and help us help our community and profession too.
User Experience Evangelist, Microsoft.
A word of caution. Sometimes getting paid to do stuff that your passionate about kills the passion.
I'm fervently hoping that it doesn't happen to you.
How did you manage to convince MSFT that they will have to implement IHanselmetric in order to get you? ;-)
Am looking forward to read about your experience on here.
Best of luck for you.
Congrat on you Scott. Go on guys.
I would love to work in ScottGu team ;) Please hire me :P
Maybe one day my dream will come true. why not yeah ?
@Merill - I agree, and if it does, I will leave. Let's see if we can make it NOT kill the passion.
@Jason - Interesting about the Train idea...I find the PDX->SEA train to be on a very unreliable schedule...I'll try everything though in order to make it easy.
@RoyO - I gave them a list of all the Open Source projects I worked on and I was assured they wouldn't be a problem. Besides, Omar and Clemens both commit to DasBlog and both work at Microsoft. I figure it'll give me incentive to get DasBlog up on Orcas. :)
Congratulations! It should be a wild and fun ride!
Having been listening to you podcasts for a while now, I can't say that I am surprised. See the Chris Sells podcast for Chris's comments.
Whilst you do have a strong MS focus, I still like the way that you look at other technologies e.g. Ruby.
I hope you continue to blog as before and that the Venn diagram intersection proves true.
I guess it'll be tougher to shrug off that troll guy (wasn't his name Hanselman, too?) who accuses you of being a Microsoft shill.
I hope you know that you are still welcome to Øredev even if it has to be next year.
You didn't have to join Microsoft to avoid coming to Atlanta based on a single user comment ;-)
Good luck and hope you keep your blog/podcasts as independent as they have been.
Congrats on getting what you consider to be your "dream job" - your readers will definitely be looking to see if you stay as independent as you have been; it will be interesting to see, if you start getting feedback indicating you are doing anything to the contrary, if you rationalize it or own up to it. :P
Your blog is great reading, and your voice is one of the few reasonable ones in the world of MS developer bloggers - hope it stays that way!
I guess it's good news though. Maybe we Europeans get to you over at TechEd Europe 2007 in November then?
Congratualtions on your new gig.
Just make sure you update your Utility List for 2007 before you become assimilated, okay? ;-)
As me, it sounds like a great opportunity and I wish you all the best. Glad to hear you'll keep up the blogging. Again best of luck.
Sigh, not really. It's great news and I am excited you are coming on board. It's just so boring to see nothing but positives in the comments. Where are the naysayers?!?!?!
I wish you the best of luck.
By the way, you are going to lose your MVP as no microsoft employee can have an MVP ;-)
That's great news, I hope that the transition goes smoothly for you. Many congratulations.
Does this explain why we've not seen much of you on Twitter? :-)
You will miss my mad XmlTestData automation skills even if you never knew they existed! Thanks for your help and ideas on prototyping OnlineBanking in SecondLife, I guess with us gone its going to be up to Travis to make it happen.
Hope you can do some good work there. If you can get ScottGu to toss those awful WebForms into the dustbin of "sounded-like-a-good-idea-at-the-time" history and instead promote a proper MVC model like TurboGears, Django, or Ruby On Rails complete with dynamic language functionality then my hat will be off to you. What's more, I'll consider returning to the Windows platform for web development if you can pull that off. As it is, I'm about 99% gone and on to Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP/Python for a web platform. And I haven't enjoyed coding so much in a really long time.
But please, give me a reason to reconsider.
Additionally, it would be great if you can get them to consider officially supporting .NET on Linux web servers. But I won't hold my breath for that one...
If you are indeed keeping up your speaking schedule, especially with INETA, please consider some trips out to the East Coast.
Reminds me of the time I sat on an Alaskan Air flight at Sea-Tac for an hour, after having been moved from another plane that was broken. So, it looked good when they hooked up the little car that pushes the plane out onto the apron; up until the pilot realized we were out of fuel....Well, I guess pre-flight checks aren't for nothing.
But, I've driven with Chris Sells and he's crazy!!!! Bring protective headwear at least.
Call Mike at (408) 528-4949 or leave a note on the "Comment on this video" section below the video.
Call Mike at (408) 528-4949 or leave a note on the "Comment on this video" section below the video.
Congrats! Microsoft has just gained one of the community's best people to push innovation further at their company!
I look forward to hearing/reading more from you about .NET technologies with an insider's view!
Congratulations. Like everybody, I wish you all the best and I am sure MS/Scott partnership is going to be great for the developer community.
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