Microsoft Threatens Its Most Valuable Professional

“Londoner Jamie Cansdale has just discovered a new approach. He had the temerity to make Redmond’s software better.As a hobby, Cansdale developed an add-on for Microsoft Visual Studio. TestDriven.NET allows unit test suites to be run directly from within the Microsoft IDE. Cansdale gave away this gadget on his website, and initially received the praises of Microsoft.

In fact, Microsoft was so pleased with him, it gave him a Most Valuable Professionals (MVP) award, which it says it gives to “exceptional technical community leaders from around the world who voluntarily share their high quality, real world expertise with others”.

However, his cherished status did not last. In December 2005, he started getting emails from a Microsoft executive called Jason Weber. The problem was that TestDriven.NET supported the Express edition of Visual Studio. Express is the cut-down version that anyone can download for free from the Microsoft website. It is limited in various ways, and is intended only for hobbyists and students. Everyone else is supposed to shell out for the paid-for versions.”

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