Ok, ok, so as much as I (and everyone else) bitches about Microsoft – I think they’ve had another “Ah, the Internet!” moment.
I was reading Mary-Jo Foley’s EXCELLENT blog entry on Microsoft’s “Cloud OS” (code name: Red Dog) and at the same time read in ComputerWorld about how Microsoft was bringing the (almost) full “power” of SQL Server to the cloud… when all of a sudden it hit me like a ton of bricks: somebody, somewhere, (or everybody everywhere) told Microsoft that they were missing the boat.
And here’s the “best” part: they actually listened.
It sort of reminded me of when Bill Gates (rest his Microsoft soul) finally “got” that the browser was the wave of the future. Back in 1995 Bill bought the rights to Spyglass – the raw underbelly HTML rendering engine that powered the then-numero-uno Netscape “browser.”
Once he assembled Spyglass into “the collective” and renamed it “Internet Explorer” – he proceeded to write an internal memo – a manifesto, if you wish, about the Internet – wherein he basically said – ‘…NOW I see it. This ‘Internet’ thing is going to be huge. Let’s buy the biggest player – make up our own crap (screw the “standards”) and give it away for free. We’ll kill those Netscape ass**les yet!” (well, he DIDN’T SAY THAT – but that’s my take on the gist of it)
So, they proceeded to kick the browser market’s a**, and eventually forced Netscape out of business (only to be revived in the Mozilla project and Firefox).
Get ready for IE round 2.
So, Microsoft is going to port a lot of the functionality of MS SQL Sever into “the cloud.” They’re coming up with their own OS – Azure (code name: Red Dog), they’ve got Ray Ozzie and the whole “Mesh” thing going on…
Yeah, the 1.0 version will suck and it will take them 2-3 years to get the 220.127.116.114 version to where it’s actually usable…. but still, I think they’vebasically “got the plot” on the fact that they can’t rely on the Windows OS and Office to fill the company coffers forever.
I’ll bet you it’s all Bill’s idea! He has nothing better to do now – and I mean – how many cocktail receptions can you go to in order GIVE AWAY your children’s inheritance? To be fair – Bill Gates didn’t get to be the richest man in America so many times by being stupid (or by being “nice”).
My personal opinion is that he has daily calls with Steve Ballmer – and Steve has become his puppet master. Meantime, back at the Bat Cave, Bill has been the ultimate puppet master: pulling the heartstrings of charity and overall worldwide “do-gooder” while secretly slipping into his “evil” black spandex “Internet War” suit at night.
He probably has that golden bust that Batman had with the big red button – and he pushes it to open the bookcase where there are pole he slides down into the “Bad Cave” to call his head henchman (Ballmer) to plan how to overtake all the other “losers” in the whole Internet game (Amazon, Google, Zoho, et al).
OR – he really doesn’t give a crap. He has enough money to last his lifetime and, as long as the stock stays above… well… ZERO… has nothing to lose… except the thrill of an “evil” opponent and the dream of world domination…
But that’s just “crazy talk”….