It is with mixed feelings that I announce that I am leaving Cassatt, effective COB tomorrow. I want to state first and foremost that this change was for personal and family reasons, and NOT because of issues with either the company or technology at Cassatt. I had a phenomenal two years with the company, and will remain in touch with much of the organization in the coming years. Cassatt still has the most technology independent solution to data center optimization and on-premises utility computing infrastructure. I still firmly believe in the vision and opportunity that is Cassatt.
That being said, the commute was killing me, and with Owen in preschool, Emery home with a Nanny that rightfully deserves reasonable working hours each day, and Mia in clinicals for her sonography program, something had to give. Not being in a hurry to make a change, I dabbled in conversation with a few traditional enterprise sales companies, but none of them blew me away. Then, unexpectedly, Matt Asay contacted me via LinkedIn (the worlds BEST professional network), and asked me if I would be interested in his current open source endeavor, Alfresco.
Now, Enterprise Content Management (ECM) has never been my gig, but I thought Matt's pitch was interesting, so I took a call with him. As he covered the company, the technology and the opportunity, I found myself getting more and more excited. After then talking to the VP of Alliances, Martin Musierowicz and the Senior Director of Solutions Engineering, Luis Sala and downloading and playing with the technology, I felt it was an opportunity that met both my immediate and long term needs. It was almost a no-brainer to accept the offer when it arrived.
The position, a solutions engineering role working with their Alliances group, let's me work from home, so the commute couldn't be better (though there are clients all around the Bay Area, and there will be occasional travel both domestically and internationally). It is also with a growing open source company, which I am extremely excited about. Oh...and I get a Mac!
In that first conversation with Matt, I asked him a key question: "Matt, you've seen my blog; I remain keenly interested in cloud/utility computing. How does that fit in with Alfresco's needs, and would I be able to continue exploring the subject as part of my job." In response, Matt said flat out that Alfresco very much encourages the building of personal brands, and that cloud computing is indeed a subject of interest to Alfresco. So, I will continue this blog, though I will probably rename it later this week. (Mostly for better search visibility...)
As for ECM, I intend to build some real expertise in the space very quickly, so I will create a separate blog (probably ecm.jamesurquhart.com) to cover that space, and my experience with Alfresco. There will be some cross-linking between the blogs as I discover how the two technologies can help each other, but I will endeavor to keep each on topic as much as possible.
(One interesting side effect of creating an ECM blog is that I risk landing in the crosshairs of James McGovern. How fun would that be?)
I will miss my friends and colleagues at Cassatt, but I am very much looking forward to this new future. As always, I can be contacted on LinkedIn, FriendFeed or at jurquhart (no spammers) at yahoo dot com.