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The Solid Approach Life in the trenches...
One of the most common defenses I hear when questioning the architecture, design or implementation of a given solution is "Well, Microsoft reviewed it and they said it was fine". I like to refer to this as the MRI (Microsoft Reviewed It) Defense. For the most part, this effectively ends any probing on my part. I mean, how do you respond to that without sounding like a total jerk?
 
A couple of things bug me about this...first is that the MRI lacks an actual explanation for why your solution does what it does. If you can't explain it to me in a couple of minutes, how could you have designed it properly? When the MRI hand is played, it is usually pretty early in the conversation and most commonly right after my first "So are you sure that doing XYZ here will scale well?".
 
The second thing that bugs me is that Microsoft didn't review it...someone who worked for Microsoft did. And this is the real rub. I have been lucky enough to work with some great people at Microsoft over the years...and some that were not so great. The bad news is that the ones who were not so great are usually in customer facing positions. These are the people that lower tier companies get when they ask Microsoft for help on a technology solution. Many times these people don't have a lot of enterprise experience, and often recommend some outright horrid things. Their recommendations often fly in the face of best practices as well as run counter to the recommendations of the actual technology experts inside Microsoft.
 
Have any of you run into this? If so, please share some of your tried and true responses...

 

Posted on Sunday, November 6, 2005 1:29 PM | Back to top


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