I’ve had the good fortune to do just about every type of creative work you can think of in a high tech company – conceptualizing, exploring, architecting, visual design, interaction model, coding, writing, rapid prototyping, sweeping the floors and more. And for the most part it’s all been a blast. I remember very well that when I started out people didn’t even know what a personal computers was, and now they’re asking whether we really need them at all given our phones do everything you’d ever want. Go figure.


The Microsoft Garage

The Microsoft Garage
(2015 – Now)


(2001 – 2014)



Adobe Systems

Adobe Acrobat




quote“If it’s not disruptive or 10x better, then why bother?
– M. Pell


Data Art

The tools and process we use to analyze and visualize data sometimes produce novel, aesthetically pleasing imagery. Data is a much Art as it is Science in my eyes. These series are my explorations of creating pieces of digital art by exploring real data sets with the tools of a data scientist. See what you…

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Scale + Complexity

“Everything you know about scale and complexity is wrong. We’ve been going about this completely backwards for at least the last decade.” – M. Pell My current work is focused on clarifying the extreme scale and complexity found in the modern datacenter, so that people can get their work done more quickly and confidently. These…

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Interactive Visualization

“Electronic information is useless unless it can be acted upon in some meaningful way. That requires a contract or understanding that the content is not “dead” on the screen, but actually alive and inviting interaction.” – M. Pell I’ve spent many years looking at how we can enable exploration and action as an integral part…

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Operating Systems

“Time is vastly underutilized in the modern OS. Hard to believe such a fundamental way of thinking about the world has been overlooked for so long.” – M. Pell Had the opportunity to learn some truly valuable design lessons while working on the Windows Design team. The most important being that constraint is not a…

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These examples of writing, creating, coding and laying out real book formats taught me a great deal about how important the design aspects of books impact the writing itself – it’s not something to be done at the end, but rather considered from the very beginning. Had a lot of fun doing these. Hope to…

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I’ve been involved with designing for mobile since 2001, the age of the text-only dinosaur phones. We’ve come a long way since pre-smartphone days, but the challenge remained constant. It’s a great design exercise to reduce things to their essential elements and essence for mobile.     Server Manager mobile (exploration) Microsoft Corp. 2012 Not…

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Had the opportunity to work on search for five years across a variety of domains – Outlook (email), Windows Live (desktop), MSN Mobile (device) and Windows 7 (operating system). Much of it was ground breaking, some still ahead of its time. Lots of great discovery and exploration of what people care about the most when…

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Have a very long love affair with photorealistic CGI, realtime graphics, and 3D UI design. Several old friends at Pixar helped me get started in the early days when SIGGRAPH was still *the* show to attend each year to see in person what the wizards had cooked up. Those were the days…     “Homer”…

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Web Browser

One of the great design challenges I had was to help the IE team leapfrog browser competition in a few key areas. Tremendous amount of change during this time with some of the most fundamental parts of the browser.     Internet Explorer 8 Microsoft Corp. 2009 United States Patent #20090150826 Issued May 24, 2012…

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Being a storyteller is an integral and necessary part of designing. Bringing your product or service scenarios to life through memorable stories is the most effective way I’ve seen to get your points across and make them stick. I do hand sketched storyboards all the time it seems.     Reduce Concepts (short video piece)…

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Online Games

I’ve had the chance to work for two online gaming companies, but in the business of providing both the tools and playback engines for games. Very fun times.         Wild Tangent game channel Wild Tangent, Inc. 2000 Directed the development of the Wild Tangent game channel console to distribute online browser games…

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