Visiting Microsoft Shanghai R&D

It was two weeks of visit in Microsoft Shanghai R&D center. I will be officially enrolled in a Marco Polo program next month. It is a program allow employee to go to other region and experience a different role. My new role will be a Program Manager in a Dev Team. My attached team is part of Server and Tool Business Division in Microsoft.

This is Microsoft APAC R&D in Shanghai

I have visited here beforeĀ  and has been to Shanghai several times. First day, by taking company bus, it was 40 minutes to reach Microsoft Zizhu Campus. I was kind of shocked, cause in Singapore, it usually takes me 15-20 minutes by taking subway. And most of time, I take cab to office for saving a few minutes. I guess I am really spoilt in Singapore. Second observation is that people work in dev team are quite young compared to people in subsidiary. I found someone younger than me in the team. It is not easy in subsidiary.

It was a AppWeek competition. Basically, we could use the dogfood(early version) of Windows Azure AppFabric, WF, WCF to build some application. My team chooses to build a music player hosted on the cloud. And my team name is mBox. My task is quite straight forward. I need to build UI for the application.

I chose HTML5 since it has audio element. I put music into Blub and streaming from it. After first day, my application starts running. I tried on iPhone and iPad. Truly impressive. I could see a music player appear in safari browser. More surprisingly, it will play in the background while I close the browser. And there is native control for the songs. Since Apple has already announced that it won’t support flash. I have to say that’s really a big draw for using HTMl5.

Prototype - cloud music player

Working in development team is truly very different. Maybe because I am new here, I don’t receive that many emails everyday so I could concentrate. It was really efficient for the past one week. I learnt a lot of things by doing and learning from my peers. More than half of the week I went off work around midnight.

Again, I am still quite irritated by the fact that I need to spend more than 1.5 hours on the road everyday, though there is internet 3G card provided. Shanghai is also quite expensive. I wonder whether people could be able to afford these high expense with local pay.

Sasha Bar in Shanghai

Most exciting part is actually weekend. I met up with Rong Rong and went to her hometown Jin Hua. She has a very happy family and her mom is very entertaining.

With Rong Rong in jin Hua

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