by admin on March 31, 2006 06:59am

Who would have guessed?

A sincere thank you for all the excitement and feedback since we launched Port25 last week. We’ve had a tremendous response and the conversation has been lively to say the least.

There have been hundreds of blog posts and hundreds of emails sent – both through the feedback aliases and many that you have sent directly to me. There have been rants, demands, questions, encouragement, suspicion, affirmation, ideas, pontifications and guidance. There are many of you who gave us technical advice (such as video formats) that was valuable and we’re making those changes – thank you for this input. Many of you have asked about the signal-to-noise ratio, and some of you have commented on this to me both on the blog and privately. I was pretty adamant about keeping the blog post system wide open to start, and introduce a registration system if you wanted us to. We’ve heard this loud and clear, and we’re looking into this now.

Let me clarify some things and hopefully set some expectations. Our goal with Port 25 is to have a community discussion on people working with OSS and Microsoft software. Many of you who know me, know that I’m a no BS type of guy and I’ve spent many years answering the 3am pager calls when problems arise in the data center. At 3am, there’s not a lot of interest in technology dogma and rhetoric. I’m now officially a PHB (hair withstanding) and although I don’t carry the pager, I haven’t lost this core principle. I understand there is going to be philosophy and zealotry, and that’s why I titled this ‘Who would have guessed?', but the work our team does in the OSS research lab is heavily oriented around trying to understand and help real customer interoperability. So this is the type of discussion that you'll hear from us, more than trying to answer why Microsoft doesn't give away all its software for free, etc.

This does not mean we won’t discuss the issues, we will, but I wanted to explain our intent and hopefully the community that grows here will be able to focus on productive and progressive technical discussions. I’m sure there are options out there on the Web for those who want to bash Microsoft, or dream up yet another conspiracy theory, but our goal here is to evolve and to hopefully provide information that makes it easier for people using OSS and Microsoft software in the real world.

So what’s next? Sam and Kishi have a variety of topics on deck for discussion and we’re going to be diving into more analysis as well as new profiles on other folks we find interesting at Microsoft. I’ll be blogging soon on a few of my experiences in open source software over the past twelve years, particularly looking to start conversations with you about your approaches and thoughts on these subjects. Also, I’ll talk about conversations I have with customers around the world on what interoperability issues they are interested in discussing. I’m thinking my next blog post should be about the talk I gave at Linux World Boston last week, and some of the ideas on interoperability I shared there. If you'd like to keep track of when we're adding new content to the site, please subscribe to our RSS feed on the home page.

Again, a sincere thank you and I look forward to seeing this community grow. And for the curious, my Russian is very, very rusty.