Moving on…

… to a new role at Microsoft. During my 4 years at Microsoft, first as the Belgian Consumer Marketing Manager for MSN and later as the Marcom Lead for MSN and Windows Live in EMEA, I’ve been experimenting with social media. Remember the Windows Live Sessions we did all over Europe (e.g. Brussels, London, …), inviting bloggers to events such as MIX, sponsoring and attending Barcamps or Girl Geek Dinners and bigger events such as Le Web for instance, the adventures with Steve and Hugh around the Blue Monster, speaking at events, getting the word out on ‘Bring The Love Back‘, engaging on blogs and twitter, etc… Although it was only a small part of my job (the main part was setting up online marketing campaigns), I’ve always been very passionate about it.

Since October 1st that has all changed. Since then I’ve started working in a new role as Digital Media Communications Manager for all Windows Consumer brands – PC, mobile and online – as well as MSN and Live Search in EMEA. I got to say, it’s like getting paid to do your hobby just like Steve seems to think about his job as well. And it’s also the reason why this blog has gone silent for a bit, as I’m still transitioning stuff from my old job to other people. Also our fiscal year started on July 1st so I got to get my new plans ready asap, expect more about that here soon.

Anyway, I’ve been waiting for the moment I could tell you all this, wish me luck and if ever you have ideas on how you think I should run this… let me know in the comments.

Powerset

Yesterday Microsoft announced the acquisition of Powerset, a San Francisco-based search and natural language company. This had been rumored already by some and so now it’s a fact. Today this news is all over on Techmeme mixed with yet new rumors about Yahoo buy-outs, partnership, acquisitions, etc etc… Don Dodge notices this as well and gives a good view on why Powerset really is of such importance to us:

“Powerset understands the intent of the query, but more importantly, it understands the meaning and context of all the relevant web pages. Rather than just match keywords from the query, Powerset looks for "semantic" matches in its index of billions of web pages.”

powerset

Looking forward to the first integration results of that. If that will happen as fast as how the search team integrated Farecast into Live Search, then expect to see results soon. But since it’s related to indexing etc it’ll most probably will take a bit longer than that.

Also think about the impact of this acquisition way beyond just Live Search. Sharepoint, Enterprise search, … this technology can add a lot of value in more than one area. Remember the acquisition of Seadragon as a good example of that. Today what came out of that technology is used in Seadragon browser, Photosynth, DeepZoom and more to come.