A blog, warning you to please read the disclaimer before looking at this Blog!

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2008/02/28 03:01 -05:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2008/02/28/7925701.aspx

I would like to think that all of the people who read some or all of this blog (whether said reading takes place occasionally, all the time, or somewhere in between), understand the blog's nature.

In particular, when I think this, I like to think specifically about the Blog's disclaimer, which is:

Postings are provided as is with no warranties, and confer no rights. Opinions expressed here are my own delusions; my employers at best shake their heads and sigh, at worst repudiate the content with extreme prejudice, whenever it manages to appear on their radar.

Maybe I should add some emphasis there. I'll try again:

Postings are provided as is with no warranties, and confer no rights. Opinions expressed here are my own delusions; my employers at best shake their heads and sigh, at worst repudiate the content with extreme prejudice, whenever it manages to appear on their radar.

That's better!

Now over the life of Sorting it all Out, this text has subtly changed, e.g. "if it were ever to" morphing to "whenever it manages to" after it turned out that my management was running across the odd post from time to time, or perhaps more often. But the spirit of the words has remained steadfast.

Everything I post here, no matter what the source (whether from within Microsoft or without), is posted through the uniquely strange prism that is my brain, and therefore it is:

In fact, I would go so far to say that hypothesizing that any opinion I state could even result in policy maker(s) within Microsoft changing direction completely for the sole purpose of proving me officially wrong is, while probably not true in either the capital B Blog or lowercase B blog sense, not something I would be willing to bet heavy against, myself.

In previous posts I have spoken ill of the people who might show such lapses in judgment, even going so far as to cast aspersions like utter moronic wingnut on therm. In retrospect this is kind of mean and even if true it was probably unkind of me to say so, and just as I do not make fun of those who do walk in front of trains or stick their tongues in light sockets, I should not make fun of these people.

Bottom line: I don't want people making fun of me for being unable to stand upright without falling, and therefore should not make fun of people who fail to grok something I write here (or who I'm speaking for when I write it).

Therefore I won't do that anymore.

Now as to the future, if you get a business card from me as of my next order then my blog URL won't be on it. And not that you can see my commitments (my management excluded of course!), but any mention of the blog within my commitments (incidental or not) will be removed during an explicit scrub during the midyear.

While various facets of my job and the people I work with will likely continue to inspire the Blog or the blogs therein, I neither desire nor expect any facet of my Blog or the blogs therein to inspire my management's perception of the work I do.

With all that said, I personally believe that what I do here in this blog actually does have some modicum of usefulness for both me as the author and for some of you as the readers. And after Denethor (and Tolkien!) I'll say that I will continue to blog in just the same way, f"rom this hour henceforth, until R.I.F. release me, or death take me, or the world end" (or I am directed not to!).

It is vaguely possible that, over time, some of the people within Microsoft who feel that (all things being equal) Sorting it all Out tends to have a less than stellar effect on customer perception of the work the group does will reconsider their position, though offhand I'm inclined to doubt it will make a bucket of piss's worth of difference, and therefore I won't hold my breath hoping for change.

Though if you are internal to Microsoft and run across a particular blog that helped you then feel free to tell my management about the experience, especially if you plan to be specific about it....

My own voice (enhanced by my opinions), is an unsuitable representative of Microsoft Corporation, and given the choice between being an honest rebel and a dishonest boy scout, I choose the former, with neither regret nor apology. So help me blog.


Many of the characters within Unicode were eager to sponsor this blog (and/or the "character" the author looks at in the mirror each morning!) but I did not want to tarnish their reputations and thanked them but then regretfully declined.

Kalle Olavi Niemitalo on 28 Feb 2008 3:32 AM:

What is R.I.F.?

Reading Is Fundamental?

Reduction in Force?

Michael S. Kaplan on 28 Feb 2008 5:36 AM:

Yep, Reduction In Force is the meaning of R.I.F. I had in mind (Reading Is Fundamental just didn't seem as appropriate!). :-)

John Cowan on 28 Feb 2008 9:15 AM:

Denethor dictates the wording of the oath (which is presumably traditional), but it's Pippin who swears it.

(This leads to the question of whether, and how much, you resemble Peregrin Took and/or Billy Boyd otherwise....)

Michael S. Kaplan on 28 Feb 2008 10:04 AM:

Hey John,

I will leave that for others to judge. And I took the oath after Denethor said it, the same way Peregrin son of Paladin did. :-)

Jan Goyvaerts on 29 Feb 2008 8:32 PM:


Have you ever considered splitting your blog into two?  You could have one blog that (mostly) relates to your job, and one that (mostly) doesn't.  People who want to read everything you write would simply add both to their newsreader, while others wouldn't have to skip the half of your blog they're not interested in or get irritated about it.

I'm planning to do just that with my own blog, not because my boss wants me to remove the URL from my card, but because I want to add the URL of the part of my blog that's relevant to the card.

Michael S. Kaplan on 29 Feb 2008 9:31 PM:

Hi Jan,

I have considered it from time to time, but the blog is meant to be an extension of me, and fragmenting me into pieces just doesn't appeal all that much (keeping track of two different blogs even less so!).

Besides, ignoring what the specific elements of the management in my group feels for just a moment, I have had enough people at Microsoft tell me that they consider it required reading for internationalization stuff in *their* groups, whether it is a "personal" blog or no.

In time maybe that "content not approved by Microsoft" tag might be considered some kind of "quality" stamp, at which point I'd be awfully embarrassed to have been so adamant on the subject with an employee of mine! :-)

Mikkin on 3 Mar 2008 6:16 PM:

Michael, "I can't believe you had to say that." On behalf of utter moronic wingnuts such as myself, I am very sorry some of us have been causing you grief.

Michael S. Kaplan on 3 Mar 2008 7:39 PM:

Thanks, Mikkin! Though I think anyone who would take the time apologize probably doesn't need to; the cause of the problem lies in those who wouldn't? :-)

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referenced by

2008/07/10 GoGlobal NOW!

2008/03/15 Yesterday was GlobalDev; Tomorrow is GoGlobal!

2008/03/02 On putting the cart before the horse (or the computer in front of the keyboard?)

2008/02/28 Font size scaling -- GDI vs. GDI+

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