Welcome OCS05 Participants!

This post goes out to anyone at the Online Community Summit that happened upon my blog today.  It's likely that you just browsed here during my presentation today and that I'm still jawing on about gathering customer feedback, transparency, and find all sorts of ways you could spill your companies IP all over the internet.  Hey, as long as you are here I might as well make it interesting to you with some additional links or "Deleted Scenes" if you will.

1. Missing humor: Yes, I cut the cheesy lead-in humor to get to the meat since I only had 15 minutes.  Here's a cartoon from Microsoft cartoonist/blogger/Office UI dude Hans Bjordahl that talks a little bit about user focused testing.    

I'd you'd like to see more of his work on a regular basis you should check out http://www.bugbash.net/ for more "Dilbert meets Microsoft" fun. 

2. Explaining Transparency:   My more detailed views on corporate transparency can be found here. Find out what does it really mean, how do we compare at Microsoft, what's the benefit to you and your customers?

3. Crazy Idea: You can participate in our feedback system today.  I'd love to hear your feedback on my idea for exposing shared groups/tags on sites that contain blogs from more than 1 person

4. Get in touch with the IE Team: I noticed a lot of firefox users in the room. If you'd like to tell the IE team why you switched and give them some good feedback you should check out the IE Blog and the feedback wiki they've created.  Pretty much every Microsoft product seems to have at least one team member in the open blogging.  Search for the product and the word "blog" and you'll likely turn someone up you can connect to.  More feedback wiki's here.

5. It's all in the details. I may or may not have had time to tell my most recent story of how knowledge sharing across Microsoft has improved with the rise of the public blog.  Anyway, the short version is that I had an idea for our forums, we weren't sure how feasible it was, I posted it to my blog, and within a day someone else at Microsoft (Lee Holmes) published a full working prototype.  After seeing the prototype/proof of concept we will be shipping this on our forums this fall.  And not to go on about the power of blogs,  but I've never met Lee or had any agreements with anyone that he would do this. Nor would I ever have been able to send mail to the right group of interested people that might be able to spend the time building a prototype. I simply blogged my idea, the idea found the right people, and we've made a bunch of progress that will help ensure the right feature is delivered to our users. 

That's all for now. Hope you enjoyed my presentation/demo!