I was just reading over at TechCrunch about Google quickly hiring Don Dodge after he was let go from Microsoft. It seems Don will be doing what he used to do at Microsoft – Developer Evangelism (good for him, and Google!).
I’m very happy to see that Google is putting their stock options and cash where their mouth is to evangelize their APIs, platforms (Android, AppEngine) and tools to developers.
A while back I wrote about the lack of Google’s outreach in the Israeli developers community, and it is still very visible in Israel by the jobs listings as well as various events and conventions that Microsoft Technology still dominates the Israeli high-tech software scene.
I do hope that hiring Don Dodge and keep on releasing tools, SDKs, Platforms and even languages such as the new Go programming language, to create the necessary diversification that every monopolized field needs.
I just hope that Google will start to do more than just very simple and shallow Dev Days in Israel and will start reaching out the community, specifically in Israel. I would like to see a Google I/O event in Israel and may be a couple of smaller events that dig down into code and details in a more intimate scenario with less people.
In general I would expect Google to start evangelizing in other countries and start having evangelists in every country they have an office. I would suggest Google to learn a bit from MSDN as well as the Microsoft Valued Professional (MVP) program – these tools are one of the best examples of creating a community based on core leaders that can drive the community as well as Google straight up.
Google is still light years from reaching the well oiled, well organized Microsoft evangelism machine and I hope Don and other will be able to make big leaps to close that gap.