Doing UC in the Pacific Northwest

I’ve been sitting on a cool announcement for several days now, and I’m happy that it’s now time to announce it.

I’ve been working with a group of people to get a new user group for Unified Communications (UC) put together here in the Pacific Northwest. While all of us are here in the Puget Sound area, our goal is to put in place a framework to empower a variety of events and meetings all throughout the region, not just based here in Seattle. Rather than be a typical boring user group with a jawbreaking acronym (PNWUCUG, which we do use), we’re defining ourselves as people who do UC. This gives us a simpler name — We do UC, hosted at ucdoers.org.

From our website:

We are the Pacific Northwest Unified Communications User Group (PNWUCUG) and we have a passion for UC. If you are one of the following, you could be one of us:

  • IT professionals in the Pacific Northwest who design, deploy, or manage Exchange Server, Live Communications Server, and Office Communications Server systems.
  • Developers who write or maintain solutions that integrate, extend, or provide UC capabilities to Exchange Server, Live Communications Server, and Office Communications Server and clients.
  • Industry experts with a recognized expertise in UC.
  • Hobbyists who are exploring Microsoft-based UC solutions.

One thing that’s important for me to clarify — my vision of this user group (which is echoed by the other folks who are getting it off the ground) is that it exists to support all Exchange, LCS, and OCS users, not just people running 2007 and doing the VoIP stuff. We may have a focus on UC, but that’s mainly to align ourselves with the direction Microsoft is taking these products. If you’re using Exchange, we want you to participate; we want to make sure we have content for you.

So, if this sounds like goodness to you, head on over to the blog for the announcement of our May 28th kick-off meeting at The Parlor Billiards & Spirits in Bellevue, WA. For those of you who can’t be there in person, we’re even going to have a Live Meeting feed for you — how cool is that?