Desmond File

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Moving to Dallas

Michael Desmond and Keith Ward, the editor in chief of MSDN are at PDC09 this week. Here's the scoop direct from L.A.

There's a whole lot of publicly-available data out there. What can you do with it?

Microsoft says it can help you build applications with it, through its just-announced new project codenamed "Dallas". Dallas was previewed during today's PDC keynote presentation. The idea behind it, according to Microsoft Technical Fellow David Campbell, is about "Taking friction out of discovering, exploring and using data."

Microsoft Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie positioned Dallas as part of its overall Azure strategy. "It is an open catalog and market place for data, both public data and commercial data."

Ozzie offered a laundry list of capabilities. "Dallas makes the whole world of data better than the sum of its parts by creating a uniform discovery mechanism for data; a uniform binding and access mechanism for data; a uniform way of exposing trial data sets for developers; a uniform licensing model so data from multiple providers can be easily joined and recombined. By delivering data as a service, our aspiration is that Dallas might catalyze a whole new wave of remixing and experimentation by developers. [It is] an opportunity for innovation that is uniquely unlocked by the cloud."

There's lots of public domain data out there from government and other sources. Finding it and harnessing it to build useful applications is the goal of Dallas. A demo showed a mobile app that was developed "in a few days," according to the speaker. The program was a job-search app that used Dallas to cull public information about jobs, and use that information to find a match for open teaching positions.

Check out Microsoft's Dallas website for more information.

Posted by Keith Ward on 11/17/2009 at 1:15 PM


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