Microsoft kicks off ISV road show

Microsoft will lug out the marketing drum for its next generation of products later this month when it kicks off its Worldwide ISV Road Show that will travel to 11 cities in nine countries.

The Road Show, which kicks off April 22 and ends May 26, is expected to lay out for developers the best ways to address some of the business problems now facing corporate users through a combination of existing and future products, including Longhorn, Whidbey, and Yukon.

"We are going to focus on the bigger challenges facing them in an increasingly connected world, along with the idea that they don't have to force users to rip stuff out today but rather connect into infrastructures that are already there to preserve their investments," said Adam Sohn, product manager in Microsoft's Platform Strategy and Partner Group.

The company will also be highlighting how ISVs can change their businesses so they can evolve and extend into new markets, thereby gathering new revenue streams, according to Sohn.

The Worldwide ISV Road Show is expected to detail how the Microsoft's flagship platforms help ISVs overcome these challenges through what Sohn referred to as the five "P's," including the Pipeline of Platform Innovation. This refers to developers being able to tap into today's platform as well as future products such as SQL Server 2005, Visual Studio 2005, "Whitehorse", the Dynamic Systems Initiative, and Longhorn.

"This pipeline begins with work they do today but draws them forward over the next couple of years to ensure they don't have to throw away investments they make today," Sohn said. "We want to give them a good road map that carries them through the Whidbey, Yukon, and Longhorn waves and even beyond that," he said.

Cities the Road Show will tour include Sydney, Beijing, Bangalore, Singapore, Munich, Paris, London, Milan, Tilburg/Netherlands, Boston, and San Francisco.

Microsoft officials will be ready to answer technical questions posed by developers regarding last week's milestone agreement between Microsoft and Sun Microsystems that figures to build technology bridges between the flagship products of the two formerly warring parties.

"We will help assure them this deal will increase interoperability, which will be better for everyone, and that putting these legal issues behind us will be very beneficial to ISVs," Sohn said. "The prospect of much deeper collaboration between the two companies can only help ISVs," he said.

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