Meet Microsoft's 'Joe Friday' "Martin Taylor — who is two weeks into his job as Microsoft platform strategist — is Microsoft's new point man on Linux. And he says he has a new plan for how to help Microsoft compete better with open-source.
Taylor, a 10-plus-year Microsoft veteran, has held a variety of posts at Microsoft. He started his career working on programs for resellers and integrators in Microsoft's Washington, D.C., office. He also worked in the company's New York office for a couple of years, managing Microsoft's organizational customer unit team. For another two years, he served as the general manager of Microsoft Caribbean, which is based in Puerto Rico.
Taylor rose through the ranks, and for the past 18 months was director of business strategy for CEO Steve Ballmer. His latest mission was helping Microsoft develop a way to measure customer satisfaction with Microsoft partners.
Microsoft also is dissecting what makes Linux tick in its own Enterprise Engineering Center (EEC). The EEC is focused primarily on helping Microsoft customers with deployments of new Microsoft software. But Microsoft also has built a simulated Linux environment at the EEC, Taylor says, where Microsoft developers can experiment with open-source operating systems, firewalls, scripting environments and the like.
"It was a great learning experience for us," Taylor says. And the lab is helping Microsoft analyze areas where open source is weak and where Microsoft should redouble its efforts—such as in single-sign-on technology, Taylor says."