Mark Anders, a senior principal scientist at Adobe, read my story today about the former Adobe and Macromedia people who now work on competing products at Microsoft and wanted to point out that “the brainpower flows in both directions.” I mentioned at the end of the story that Anders — who is leading work on Thermo, a new tool for designers building rich Internet applications — came from Microsoft, but there are many more who have followed a similar path. He gave me just a few examples in an email this afternoon.
“I would like to point out that there are a LOT of former Microsoft people here,” Anders wrote.
“The engineering managers of both the Flex Framework (Steve Breinberg) and Thermo (Cory West), which is a new designer focused application building tool that I’m working on, are both former ‘softies. One of the lead engineers on Flex Builder is Mike Morearty is a former Visual Studio engineer.
“Of course Adobe also has a Seattle office and there are a lot of former Microsoft people there, too. I just spoke to Kevin Goldsmith, engineering manager of the Adobe Imaging Foundation, who worked on Windows Media and he mentioned that on his hallway there are four former ‘softies. In 30 minutes, I have a meeting with David Salesin, a former Microsoft researcher and still professor at the UW who did a lot of the core research on adaptable text layout, which was one of the key features Microsoft used to talk about for WPF.”