Boris Mann

Open Source. Community. Decentralized Web. Building dev tools at Fission. Cooks & eats.


Microsoft Canada opening software dev center in Vancouver (commentary)

So, my phone was ringing off the hook this morning with people wanting feedback on the announcement that Microsoft Canada is opening a software development center here in Vancouver.

What's my reaction? It's great! Microsoft Canada has been taking some interesting steps lately, like hiring David Crow, who kick started the Toronto tech scene over the past few years. It was great to catch up with him at the Microsoft Expression launch event I attended a couple of weeks back.

Yahoo missed the chance to have an engineering team here when they moved the entire Flickr team down to San Francisco (the last big tech acquisition here in town, rumoured to be around $40M). Google has spoken with some local universities, but they tend to be computer science snobs, so they went for the more well known Waterloo (also to keep an eye on RIM, which being in the mobile space is going to become increasingly important).

I see the Microsoft lab here in Vancouver as an increasing acknowledgment that "stuff is happening" here. We've got a unique mix of creative and tech people, big companies and start ups, and world events like the 2010 Olympics that are going to put us at center stage.

So...Yahoo and Google...when are the labs coming to town? And, unlike Microsoft who are rumoured to be going to boring Burnaby or Richmond -- stick a center downtown somewhere. Gastown and Yaletown still have lots of room for you!

If you tune to Global TV for the noon show, I may be on there. I've also briefly talked to Business News Network, so we'll see if that's a go for the evening slot. Busy day....

Update: I got a small clip on Global TV in the noon show, which re-aired at 5pm and 6pm. I didn't manage to get the digital version of that clip, I'll update again if I can get a copy. I did end up getting interviewed by Howard Green from BNN (was formally Report on Business TV). It was myself and Bernie Magnan, Chief Economist for the Vancouver Board of Trade. The clip was up about an hour after the show, and I managed to find this direct link to the episode. I'm about 5 - 7 minutes in, and unfortunately it will only play on Windows as far as I can see.

Oh, and don't forget: we're talking everything from co-housing to tech tonight at DemoCampVancouver02.