Among the interesting tidbits revealed during Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) 9 debut (in developer-preview form) last week was that Ted Johnson, the founder of Visio, is back at Microsoft and is working on the IE team.
Johnson quietly rejoined Microsoft in August 2008 and had been keeping a low public profile in the ensuing months. But Johnson was one of the speakers at Microsoft's Mix 10 conference last week, where he showed off some of the new graphics advances planned for the IE 9 release.
Johnson was a Corporate Vice President at Microsoft between January 2000 and September 2003. As part of the Server and Tools Business, he oversaw Microsoft Project, Visio, Publisher, and MapPoint. Johnson joined Microsoft following the Redmondians' acquisition of Visio, the company Johnson cofounded with Jeremy Jaech and Dave Walter in the fall of 1990 for $1.3 billion.
Johnson left Microsoft in 2003 to cofound Trumba Corp., a Seattle-based developer of online calendaring software/services. Johnson was Vice President of Products there when he left in 2008.
Johnson said he was looking for a new job and called Microsoft Windows President Steven Sinofsky, who put him in touch with the IE team. On the IE team, he is now Product Manager (PM) Architect for graphics and rendering on IE.
Visio is technical drawing and business diagramming software. Visio and Project were contributing more than $1 billion to Microsoft's coffers as early as 2006. Microsoft will be releasing its newest version of Visio, the Ribonnized Visio 2010, in the May/June timeframe.