Friday, August 01, 2008

Victory

After two full months with no new posts, I’m finally coming up for air. The past two months have been some of the busiest of my life. Below are a few of the things I’ve been doing.

  • Relocating to the Seattle area. At the ALT.NET Open Spaces, Seattle, John Lam warned me not to underestimate the stress of relocation. I did my best to heed his warning, but the challenges of moving a family 2,000 miles away from friends and familiarity are many. The initial months cramped in a small, temporary apartment were brutal. However, I’m happy to report that I’m writing this from our new home, surrounded by boxes yet to be unpacked. Now, if only our house back in Toledo, Ohio would sell…
  • Starting a new job at Microsoft. Getting used to the rapid pace at Microsoft takes a lot of effort. In fact, new hires generally aren’t expected to be really productive until after the first six months. Though I have to admit, I really like it. It’s exciting to be working shoulder to shoulder with so many people who are passionate about creating the best developer tools that they can.
  • Attending Tech Ed Developers 2008. After living in Seattle for just two weeks, I spent a week in Orlando at Tech Ed Developers 2008. Thankfully, I only presented one session, “Hardcore Reflection.”
  • Participating in the ICFP 2008 Programming Contest. I joined Luke Hoban, Brian McNamara and Chris Smith for a full weekend of F# coding for this year’s ICFP Programming Contest. Brian has the full details here.
  • Taking on more responsibility at work. I joined Microsoft as a Program Manager on the IDE in the Visual Studio Managed Languages group (which includes C#, Visual Basic, IronRuby, IronPython and F#). I work with two other program managers, Karen Liu and DJ Park, to drive the development experience of the IDE. At first, my primary area of responsibility was the debugger. However, due to some shuffling around, I have taken the role of the program manager for the Visual Basic IDE. Being passionate about programming languages and developer tools, I am enormously excited about this new responsibility.

Since I am the new Visual Basic IDE program manager, some of you might be wondering what’s going to happen to this blog. The answer is, very little. You might see a bit more Visual Basic code, but it’s always been here. The truth is, I’m a fairly multi-lingual guy. Before joining Microsoft, I was a C# MVP. Now I’m working on the Visual Basic IDE, and every morning I install the latest F# dogfooding bits. Rest assured, I still intend to post articles on C# and F#, as well as Visual Basic.

It’s all done in .NET after all.

posted on Friday, August 01, 2008 7:41:15 AM (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)  #    Comments [4]

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 Wednesday, April 09, 2008

BlueMonster 

The rumors are all true. May 19, 2008 will be my first official day as an employee of Microsoft. Specifically, I will be joining the Visual Studio Team as a Program Manager.

This month marks five years since I joined the (then) fledgling CodeRush team at DevExpress as an outside contractor. (I later became a full employee in September of 2003.) The years seem to have passed quickly, yet we've accomplished an incredible amount with CodeRush and Refactor. It feels like just yesterday when Mark and I were doing our first proof of concept work for painting via managed code on the decidedly unmanaged Visual Studio editor. Yet today, we're shipping products with blazingly fast productivity boosts, more than 150 refactorings, and stunning next-generation UI. After five years, I still feel that CodeRush and Refactor are, hands down, the best Visual Studio productivity tools available.

I'm leaving quite a bit behind to join Microsoft. DevExpress is an amazing company to work for. If any readers are looking to work for a cutting-edge company at the top of its game, I recommend applying. At DevExpress, I've developed some strong friendships that are difficult to leave. Obviously, we'll keep in touch and see each other at conferences, but we won't be working together anymore. Ray, Julian, Kevin, Oliver, Courtney and Mehul will be greatly missed.

I'll especially miss working with the IDE Tools team (a few members of which are pictured below). Contrary to popular belief, Mark and I don't make up the entire IDE Tools team. In reality, it is staffed by some extraordinarily intelligent programmers—all of whom have been blessed with the ability to deal with Mark and myself.

IDE Team (partial)

One couldn't find a more talented group of people.

But scarecrow, I'll miss you most of all1.

garlic

Regardless of the garlic (viewable in the picture above) that you constantly hang over yourself to ward off vampires, the last five years have been the most enriching of my programming career. To say that "I've learned a lot" is a gross understatement. You truly are a visionary and an inspiring person to work for (with). From you, I've learned that presumed impossibility should never be a barrier to invention.

As much as I love DevExpress, it's time for a change. The company is in a really healthy place, and my leaving should cause minimal ripples. I think that I have a lot to offer in the IDE space at Microsoft, and it's a good time to move on.

In addition to leaving my current job, I will be moving to Seattle. For the next several months, my family and I will be going through the stresses of relocation. Is anyone interested in purchasing a charming two story, brick, four bedroom home in Toledo, Ohio?

1Hillary Flammond, Top Secret!

posted on Wednesday, April 09, 2008 8:19:47 AM (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)  #    Comments [16]

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