James Governor's Monkchips

Why Microsoft Still Needs Another Scoble. More on Don Ferguson.

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How the hell can Microsoft poach IBM’s chief software architect and noone in Redmond blogs it? Not a sausage. nish. nowt. niet. nothing. zilcho.

The PR splash page is pretty much beyond lame, because Don is nothing if not human, full of quirks and foibles and contradictions. The guy is interesting. Talking of beyond lame, apparently IBM has now deleted Don’s blog posts from IBM.com (via webmink), in the process porking my blog post from yesterday. luckily google cache will keep em, and that I gleaned some material before they did. Couldnt IBM just thank Don for his contributions and leave it at that? Airbrushing history is never a good look.

Dave Shields recently argued IBMers should blog from their own platform, rather than through developerworks. I can now see a bloody good reason to do just that. IBM seems to not appreciate some facts about the new patronage economy. People don’t want to make contributions you can nuke. They want to work for you but have some small degree of autonomy. Deleting blogs is like editing blogs when nobody is looking. It just smells wrong. Can you imagine if Cote left and we deleted peopleoverprocess? Self-defeating I am sure you’d agree. What if Bobby Woolf joined Microsoft? How much IBM SOA documentation would be lost?

But back to happy happy. If Scoble was still at Microsoft he would have done something on Ferguson joining for sure. Hey Scoble – nice opportunity for podtech here. If channel 9 doesn’t have its act together why don’t you interview Don so we can find out more?

Come on Microsoft you need to up your game. Or does silence indicate something else? Dare, for example, is not exactly fan of enterprise architecture people. I would have thought at least Don Dodge would have something to say. Or Don Box. Or someone. oh well perhaps with time. For now the only people that seem to notice are the lotus eaters.

disclaimers: IBM patron, Microsoft occasional client


  1. Yeah, I saw at least three MSFTies talking about this yesterday and put one on my link blog.

  2. Chris Barger of IBM posts an explanation of what happened as a comment to Simon Phipps’ blog (linked above.)

  3. James, you are right. I saw the announcement before getting on a long plane flight. Then I blogged on a couple other topics, and didn’t get back to the Don Ferguson topic.

    Getting Don is a big deal. Getting Jon Udell was another big win. Coincidently, I am going to meet with Jon later today.

    Scoble was lucky, and unique, at Microsoft. He didn’t really have a day job other than blogging and video. So, he had the time to respond to everything…instantly. Alex, Dare, and I have day jobs that get in the way.

    In fact, I am sitting in a Microsoft meeting right now while I type this, and I am getting dirty looks because I am not listening to the people in the room. That’ s life…

    Don Dodge

  4. cheers mike. i had seen the alex post. mea culpa.
    cheers don – dirty looks – i have been in plenty of microsoft meetings where tap tap is expected. you sort of make an argument that indicate MS does need someone to play the Scoble role, with freedom to blog. that said he was doing like 18 hour days for you, blogging from home, and doing a day job. those folks are not easy to find, like you say.

  5. oh yeah thanks david for the clarification. its weird-earlier i could have sworn the links from my earlier post weren’t working. now they are. cool.

  6. Given the medium (xml) and available protocols (APP), I have absolute “freedom to leave” for my blog at dWorks. I didn’t see an easy way to export all my entries from my dWorks blog, so I copied a template I had already written for one purpose to do exactly that. Exported as an atom file. Which I could arrange to import into some other APP-capable blogging system.

    I should ask Dave Johnson about that some time, if I make it back to a Raleigh Bloggers Meetup.

    I just copied the two Roller templates I’ve written to my wiki. Also at dWorks. 🙂

  7. Ferguson’s blog is back, with a disclaimer “Mr. Ferguson is no longer an employee of IBM”.

  8. This is Don Ferguson. I have had an email exchange and phone call with folks on developerWorks. dW is acting very professionally and treating me with respect. I know these folks and they are great people. The situation will resolve.

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