Technical Strategy Group (TSG)

Following on a previous post, I thought I would talk a bit more on my teams charter, contributions to Microsoft, and some of my areas of responsibility.

TSG Team Charter

The Technical Strategy Group (TSG) works to capture and influence Business, eXperience and Technology direction and opportunities for the company. TSG is managed from the Office of the Chief Software Architect (CSA – That’s Ray Ozzie). The TSG programs ensure long-range customer scenarios and trends are well understood with documented supporting technology requirements and via circulated, well-articulated thought, where there is the highest potential for impact.


Charter, Mission statements, blah, blah, blah – what tangible deliverables am I responsible for, you ask? Surely, your career hasn’t drifted from core Architecture, Design, and Development?!?

As I mentioned in a previous post, I am responsible for the Engineering team within TSG. Some of my responsibilities are in delivering our web sites in support of our CSA’s charter. Our sites are a bit more than the standard web sites, in that we do a lot of collaboration and/or joint development with teams such as MSR (Microsoft Research).

You can see some of the *cool* technology that we work with in this President Obama inauguration video. Check out the relevance, transcript sync with video frames, and the ability to jump around. While this video is built upon Flash, we use Silverlight 3 for our development J as our sites are quite rich, we take advantage of the RIA (Rich Internet Application) functionality in SL3. We had a seamless upgrade experience from SL2 to SL3, so I would highly recommend the upgrade. I would also recommend the Channel 9 videos on SL and as always check out Scott Guthrie’s blogs on the subject. I’ll come back to some of the technology later. In the mean time check out the Telerik controls we often use.

Before you ask, these sites are Intranet (internal) sites and may not be found on the public Internet. This is due in part, to the Intellectual Property (IP) contained on these sites.

One of the sites/applications we author is the new ThinkWeek site launched on 7/6/09. More on this site and the program in a blog coming soon to a theater near you.

Another site/application we have been supporting is the Quest program that has been helping our technical leaders think through our long-term technical vision. You might have heard recently that the Quest program is concluding and making way for a new way to look at long-range planning at the division level and cross company. Well, all that’s true, quests were successful and we are now refining what we do to a new level given that we are executing better than we were in those days and we’re structured differently now. If you would like to see something that was of the ilk of the Quests, check out this totally cool vision video (think CSI: or Minority Report) from the Office labs team on the future of technology and associated user experience. What can I say, but I want it now! And when will that transporter be delivered J Innovation! Innovation! Innovation!

We have some cool controls we prototyped for the ultimate experience and as I like to do we will utilize these controls on our other sites. I’ll blog more on our site(s) features and technology latter. Stay tuned.