Garrett Serack: Open Source Software Community Lead

by Garrett Serack on June 21, 2007 06:50pm

I'm pleased to announce ... er, myself, as the Open Source Community Lead here at Microsoft.

I'd have left this to Sam, but hey--why should he get all the fun.

I'm responsible for building communities of Open Source developers around Microsoft's platforms, both externally, and internally--yes, this means the product groups.  I'm really interested in what kinds of things we can start building as Open Source software, and illuminating what we've already done.

I said a few things the other day on My blog that I think I bears repeating:

This is a pretty wide reaching role, meaning that I touch a lot of ground. Some of the highlights:

    • Seeking out Open Source projects we can assist (either by contributing code, MSDN licenses or whatever 😀 )
    • Speaking/Presenting with companies, conferences, groups and people
    • Building an Open Source MVP Program
    • Enlightening Microsoft Product Groups about Open Source, and finding opportunities for them
    • Facilitating communication between open source developers and Product Groups
    • Building transparency into Microsoft and Open Source (believe it or not!)

There have been a lot of changes in Microsoft in the last few years, that folks can't yet see, and I'm hoping to expose that type of thing to the world, and bring the world of Open Source to Microsoft.

I'm not going to espouse the great plans I have in too much detail... I've found that actions speak louder than words, and have far more lasting impact than the words do. I'm focusing on what Microsoft is doing, and less on what has been said. I mentioned that too in my blog:

I don't get it... Microsoft and Open Source? Are you sure?

I know... I know. Y'all got some reservations about Microsoft with regards to open source.  Well, I'm not going to try convince you of anything. What I am going to do is to shine the light on the things Microsoft is doing to create communities in the Open Source world.

Add to that, I'm doin' some rustlin' inside of the company itself--as expected, there are a few tenderfoots 'round here who would just soon reckon' we didn't bother. Well, I got a cattle brand heatin' up just for the conversation.... We'll just see about that.

Somethin' about me:

I joined Microsoft in the fall of 2005 as the Community Program Manager of the CardSpace team, and I've been working with companies and the open source community to build digital identity frameworks, tools and standards to shape the future of internet commerce and. I'm also co-writing a book titled Understanding CardSpace, which should be available in the fall of 2007. Prior to moving to the Puget Sound area, I've had a lengthy career as a Software Development Consultant, moving from Developer, to Architect, to Mentor over the course of the last 16 years. As life-long code-monkey, I've pounded out code on more than 20 platforms and 35 different languages, and I see no reason to stop there. I've put code into many open source projects, and I'd like to think that I share a very strong part of the Open Source vision that permeates information technology everywhere. You can catch all my posts on my blog at .

What's Next:

In my next blog post I'll detail the promise--that is my commitment to the community.  I think it's important to know what you can expect, as well as my boundaries.  I'll also have communication channels setup so that you can talk to me; either publicly, or via confidential email.

Garrett Serack


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