Savas is moving on (to search for ET Life!!!! :-)

After two wonderful years working for Tony Hey‘s Technical Computing and then External Research teams, it’s time to find a new challenge.

I talked to various teams (inside and outside Microsoft) and found lots of interesting opportunities. At the end, I decided to do something very risky and move to Live Search :-) My intention is to learn as much as possible over the coming months on what it means to deliver a production-quality service for millions of users utilizing a huge computational/storage infrastructure and dealing with the world’s data. In the process, I hope I can contribute some fresh ideas on how to process and reason over the Web’s data.

If you are reading this blog, you probably know that I am interested in semantics and large-scale computing. My new role is going to involve both, so I am very excited.

Few notes about working for Tony

I joined Technical Computing from CSD after Tony Hey’s invitation. He wanted a technical person and I guess he found a troublemaker :-) I learnt so much throughout the last two years (it was Nov 1st 2006 when I started).

It’s been a great ride. The team managed to deliver a lot with much more to come; we worked hard and slept little but it was all worth it. I am not going to list all the projects with which I got involved but I enjoyed every single one of them, even those that didn’t actually saw the light of day. I do have some favorites, like Famulus, Chem4Word, and “Cloud Services for Science” (details in the coming weeks) but all have a spot in my heart.

I can write an endless number of blog entries about Tony’s influence in my career, about his leadership, his vision, his enthusiasm, his personality. He’s a great mentor, a great leader, a great role model. There are many things I am going to miss from ER but working for Tony is definitely the one at the top of the list. Tony, thank you for everything!!! I really can’t find the words to show my appreciation.

I have seriously enjoyed working with Lee Dirks and Alex Wade who have a fantastic portfolio of projects in the Scholarly Communication space. They are great guys so don’t lose any opportunity to interact with them.

I am going to miss the entire team. Everyone had something fantastic to share/give… Daron Green (great manager and advisor), Evelyne Viegas (clever, passionate about semantics, gives great advices, smiles), Dan Fay (great insights and all-around technology-geek :-), Kris Tolle (very passionate about her domain), Roger Barga (methodical, hard worker), Carole Poland (the most positive person ever!).

What happens to Famulus and Chem4Word

I am going to continue my involvement with those two projects. I am going to make sure that they reach the promised level of maturity and delivered to the community, as originally planned! This is my personal commitment.

What’s with the “ET Life” in the subject?

The consumer reality… the reason I consider my move to Live Search “risky”… the branding awareness…

I told a very very very dear friend of mine about my move to Live Search. Here’s how the email exchange went:

  • Me:



    Which reminds me…

    I announced to my team that I am leaving. I am joining Live Search (yes, Microsoft does have a ‘search’ service :-) I am going to make all the difference now :-)


  • My friend’s reply:



    ohhh those are crazy news!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So what does it mean you are part of live search!!! you have to explain this to me – it sounds like you’ll be looking for ET life somewhere!!!!!!!!!!!

:-)

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