Friday, August 15, 2003

Rebuilding MSDN

As you may know, I'm a consultant. Right now, my main clients are Microsoft (you've
probably heard of them) and Integic (you might not have heard of them). Both of them
have some pretty interesting projects going on. I'd like to talk a bit about the one
at Microsoft.


I mentioned previously that I'm doing work for MSDN but that I wasn't allowed to talk
about it. Well, I've gotten clearance to mention a few things, so I'm here to share.


The project I'm involved in has already been mentioned a few times - both Tim
and Sara
have talked about it in their blogs. The basic idea behind what we're
doing is to rebuild the parts of MSDN that need building, starting - where necessary
- from the ground up.


This is exciting for several reasons:


1) Tim has an all-XML vision for the system that is going to enable MSDN to provide
some interesting services to developers.

2) The team has some serious technical talent, and a few of them are old friends of

3) is obviously a gigantic, large-scale website, and I've always
been interested in the far end of that particular spectrum.

4) I've never worked on a Microsoft project before this.


The part we're tackling now involves developing a system for the people that produce
and manage content at MSDN to more easily and quickly get that content out to the
public. And for the public to more easily, reliably, and flexibly access that information. 


I don't want to go into all the details of the system today - some things we're still
figuring out, some things will change, and some things might get dropped - but I have
permission to say more in future posts. And I will.



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