Just had a really funny thing happen. I was typing in Office Communicator the name of one of my colleagues to see if she was online yet this morning. I typed in “teri h” and the app searched through both the company address list and my personal contacts in Outlook. The irony is that it looks like while Teri Hoffman isn’t online this morning, the local teriyaki restaurant we go to by our house isn’t online today either! 🙂
The real reason this appeared is that I have a number of restaurants in my contacts so it’s easy to place takeout orders while we’re driving home. Microsoft has integrated our Office Communicator platform with the phone system, so if I wanted I could click on the phone icon next to the restaurant’s listing and call them.
Still, it got a good laugh out of me that a restaurant would show up in my IM client!
I had the distinct pleasure of attending my first Microsoft Company Meeting yesterday at Safeco Field. I can assure you, you’ve never been to a business meeting like this before! Does your office gathering have Rainn Wilson as MC? A pitching mound? Beach balls and pyrotechnics? A drum line? 20,229 paper airplanes (and hundreds more unofficial flying paper objects)? Gigantic display screens? 4 seating levels? 20,000+ people (more than a Mariners game these days…)? A traffic jam?
Jaw-dropping demos of technology that your company (maybe even YOU) helped put together? Steve Balmer running around the room chest bumping people, screaming his head off, and inadvertently knocking defenseless women over? (seriously – that was funny as hell!)
I can’t wait to get using the next versions of Windows, Windows Mobile, Office, and a bunch of the other stuff I saw. I can honestly say that coming from the outside (of MS) recently, that while you may think the Microsoft has lost “the touch” I can tell you you’re wrong. Just wait for this stuff to get out.
Speaking of – check out the new beta version (public) of Windows Live Messenger (and the other WLx products). Head over to http://download.live.com. Messenger is WAY cleaned up from the UI of old, you can leave it logged in on multiple computers (chats appear on both and when you close a window on one it closes on the other – great for folks like me with multiple PC’s), and you can see “What’s New” with all the people in your address book. My extended team runs Messenger, the address book platform, as well as the stuff that makes “what’s new” work.
Lastly, I’m so happy to see Microsoft finally get off it’s ass and compete in the marketing space. Far too long, IMHO, have we countered Apple’s Mac v. PC ads with either nothing or the kind of over-detailed over-engineered non-passionate advertising Microsoft is known for. It’s time to stick up for ourselves and the fallacy that cool people use, and cool things happen, only on a Mac. Great things happen on the PC platform every day, and I’ve heard lots of stories about just as many issues on Macs as Windows boxes.
I’m a PC … and I help tens of millions of people every day connect to their friends, family, and community … one IM at a time. 🙂