Random musings, observations, squeaks, whimpers and perhaps the ocassional rant. About what, I'm not sure.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Robert Scoble - Devil's Henchman or Devil's Advocate...

Early this year I posted something entitled “The Religious Wrong” about the ideological debate regarding Microsoft vs. Apple, and it got posted to Scoble’s link blog.  That was fun.  It was sort of amusing to see the reactions and see people railing Scoble as a way to vent their frustration with Microsoft.  Guess that must be a recurring theme, ‘cause they’re doing it again, but this time not necessarily Apple vs. Microsoft – more “anyone vs. Microsoft”.

Microsoft is taking services seriously, just like they’re taking modularization and component combination as application seriously, and they’re turning up the heat.  Whoda thunk it?  Oh, I don’t know… maybe anyone who knows much about the company?  And of course, because these concepts are being driven throughout the company, this must be the newest thing Microsoft is doing that they’ll either a) fail at, b) not really know what they’re doing with, c)steal from others or d) use to unfairly whack all those other companies that for whatever reason (undercapitalized, underinnovating, disorganized, generally screwed up) would have “won” but instead will “lose”.  Give me a break.

The Microsoft material on their sharpening focus can be found here, if you’d like to read it.  I actually found the beatings dished out to Scoble more interesting than the Microsoft material.  I think its an excellent commentary on folks sticking their heads in the sand, wishing the world (and business) worked differently, and/or bitching and moaning when they see success coming and perhaps streaming right past them, not bothering to stop.

Here’s the comment I posted in reply to Scoble’s original post  about the Ozzie and Gates memos, and the subsequent comment storm:

Wow - more religious wrangling with/against Scoble rather than focusing on the real issues at hand. Here are a few things to think about, like them or not.

One, Microsoft is the most influential company in the computer technology world, bar none. Most influential does not translate to “smartest” or “most innovative” on every topic, or every day, but by and large if you don’t think they’re the most influential, then fill the crack pipe again and smoke on.

Two, services make absolute sense in conjunction with a modular operating system, and/or modular applications, and/or modular components that make up applications. If you don’t believe that, see the point above about the crack pipe and join the fun.

Three, Microsoft has the wherewithal to win in the spaces they make “big bets” on. They’re incredibly well funded (hey, anyone else have $40B or so laying around, and how big a pile of cash is that, anyway?), their research organization is world-class, and they have a machine to move research to product to revenue to profit.

Bash Scoble if you like - I guess that’s kind of fashionable. But if you haven’t seen this focus coming you haven’t been paying attention. You don’t have to be there first to win, and in many cases not being first helps you win. In the game of sofware-as-service meets components-as-application, Microsoft will drive the market. Maybe THAT’s the definition of winning… ever think of that?

Microsoft will certainly continue to shape our computing world.  Is that good or bad… both and neither, most likely – it just is.  Grow up and smell the Starbucks, folks – when Microsoft makes big bets, they’re serious about them.  Hate the game, not the player.



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