Who came all the way from Ohio to work at MySpace. Starry eyed at the thoughts of millions of concurrent users leveraging software she built, she packed her bags and moved across the country in a jiffy. It was not disappointing.
MySpace was filled with color and character. There were many, many faces all over the amazing complex in Beverly Hills. There were crowded corridors filled with pictures of MySpace Secret Shows and meeting rooms with people excited doing collaborative design. This girl and her friends built the Activity Stream at MySpace and soon realized that it was essential for the stream to flow outside the walls for it to stay alive and thus she embarked on a quest to find a sensible way to exchange this valuable information about users at MySpace. In this quest she found new friends and realized that she truly identified with the values that they were fighting for: letting the user be in control, opening up the walled garden and allowing anyone big or small to have the same opportunities by using open standards.
As you may have guessed, that girl, woman actually is me :) And today is my last day at MySpace. I am filled with nostalgia but excited about the future and pursuing my dreams.
You may be surprised since I have been doing a series of conferences. As Group Architect I was able to not only work with the Activity Stream team but also on the Developer Platform with the backing of the COO, I was able to have my ideas heard and executed. It was these projects which provided massive openness of the user’s MySpace data via Open Standards like OpenID, oAuth, ActivityStrea.ms and PubSubHubbub that filled me with joy because of all the possibilities we provided for other people to be creative.
But I have chosen to leave. While I was able to have some temporary creative freedom this is not the norm or part of what other engineers enjoy and I do not feel there is one cohesive push to deliver the best we can deliver anymore.
To my friends and colleagues at MySpace, some parting advice:
It is imperative that MySpace puts in place strong technical leadership who can attract good technical talent and make well-informed decisions. It is important that they stay connected to rest of the world and work on interoperable standards and solid products which benefit the end user. Many of my fellow engineers have fantastic ideas and a plan for phased delivery.
I wish them the best of luck and I am sure we will cross paths and work together.
If everything goes as planned, I will also be working with more of you in the community and helping showcase and build upon one of the most incredible social products I have ever seen.
Yes that is right ! I am happy to announce that I have decided to join Facebook as an Open Source and Web Standards Program Manager.
I will be working closely with David Recordon, Luke Shepard and another fantastic group of people.
This is going to be a great year. Get ready !