Sunday, March 18, 2007

To placate

Remarkably enough, all of you have shown restraint when it comes to asking me what I actually do for Microsoft. Though your politeness is truly appreciated, today is your lucky day. Today's the day I indulge your curiosities.

I'm a program manager. I won't tell you the team name; in my opinion it's a little lackluster and you will stop reading. I will, however, tell you about the most interesting program I've managed thus far.

If you have a few moments, go and check out the Times Reader from the New York Times. It's a fantastic application and a great way to get the news. Unfortunately, I can't take much credit for it. I joined Microsoft right as our most intense involvement was ramping down.


The concept of the Times Reader has resonated well with a lot of publishers around the world. Most publishers have neither the technical expertise nor the resources to create one of these experiences from the ground up. My job has been to work with a team of developers at Microsoft and create a starter kit which allows publishers to quickly create these kinds of applications.

In February, the first round of publishers released beta applications based on the starter kit. Some of these applications were created in just over a month. Some of them are still a bit rough around the edges, but you should go and check them out.

As a teaser, I've included a screen shot of the daily mail. It's a British tabloid. Before you download it, I should warn you that British tabloids are decidedly less fictional than their American counterparts. Although I'm not exactly within their target demographic, I do find that the stories make interesting water cooler conversation.


Thursday, March 08, 2007

curl gout sookies

more american than apple pie.

it's that time of year again: the girl scouts are out and about and on the prowl. knocking on doors and parading in front of grocery stores for two weeks, practically forcing you to spend $4.00 (or more!) on their delicious and highly addictive snacks.

this year, they have another thing coming.

behold the power of the internet: unbeknownst to them, i have found, through diligent searching, the recipe for a bonafide imitation of the famed thin mint, and the scouts are in for some heated competitition.

in a double blind taste test, 100% of those polled (sample size of 15) agreed that emily's version of the cookie was tastier than the previously favored "girl scout cookie."

...unfortunately, due to the high cost of production for the "emily cookie" (both in resources and manpower), the girls in green still maintain their precious corner on the cookie market. but mind you, that corner is steadily shrinking, and my time as cookie queen is soon to come.

next year, samoas!