Integrating community — I want your help

I’ve spent the last week trying to define our community
marketing requirements for the next version of visual studio.  Thinking
with my customer hat; what would I want to see in the product?  What
community features really work?  I thought
about Web Matrix and and
how they integrate community and product, but I don’t think that is enough.  The
control gallery concept in web matrix is wonderful and should definitely grow and
expand, but what else is important for building community? Developers write code,
share code, and need code.  We all want
to make our lives easier and leverage as much productivity as possible.  I
feel that PHP is wildly successful because of the community and codebase that has
grown up around it.  How can we replicate
and improve upon it?  Is the key here
integrating community into the cockpit?  The
place where we spend every breathing moment writing code?  Or
is it through external means; websites, users groups, etc.?  "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />Right
now I think the answer is both — there needs to be a way to leverage the communities
fruits within the IDE itself while still keeping it open to others to innovate on.


I’d be curious to hear all your thoughts.  My
developer hat is only so big — so preach on, how do you use the community?  What
would make you more productive and more successful?  I
promise to take your feedback to heart.  Leave
a comment, or better yet, email me.

Comments (5)

  1. Finally got around to making some coherant comments…

  2. Brian Goldfarb says:

    Awesome feedback — I ddi leave all that out, but it the kind of thing I have been thinking about as well. You should see — we are making some strides in developing external community. That is the most important. But can we help nurture those communities by making it incredibly easy to be apart of them, learn from them, grow them and ultimately codify them to make life easier for everyone. Thanks for the feedback.

  3. Ken Kiefer says:

    Hi. For me, being able to get historical content out of the newsgroups has been very helpful. When I run into something I cannot figure out, I head to Google and query the microsoft.public.dotnet.* groups. Sometimes I strike out, but my batting average feels about 500+. Back in the mid-90s I was into the IRC instant messaging scene, more for personal stuff than technical, but I was really impressed seeing how a group of techies I knew got a lot of good coding done while chatting to each other on IRC. As to incorporating "community" into Visual Studio, I’d prefer to do my community stuff outside of the IDE, but if the IDE could help me find the community, that’d be cool.
    I use community mostly for sample code, especially when I’m in learning mode. It would be cool to also use it for getting design alternatives or suggestions also. (I’m often too bashful to post my design questions). Anyway, I’m starting to ramble …. good night.

  4. Sigurdur G. Gunnarsson says:

    I’d really like to see an option to make "online collaboration groups" in VS.NET. A way to setup a team over the internet to help collaboration on a project. A big minus though is that someone would have to host the content in a secure way.

  5. Brian Goldfarb says:


    Check out workspaces — these are online collabortive groups . There is a plugin for VS.NET 2003 that allows you to make GDN workspace your ‘source control’ provider so you can check files into and out of the workspace direclty from within the IDE! This might do what you are looking for. Definitely something we are looking at improving moving forward.