… by announcing that he’s leaving Microsoft. The company’s share price soared on the news.
When it came time to invest both in the stock market and in an OS for the future of our family business, I bet on the other Steve. I’m ahead of the game so far.
While working on a project for a client, I needed to confirm that various computers were writing certain kinds of metadata to files. One thing I needed was an example of the metadata written during a screen capture by Windows 8. Since I have upgraded my recently purchased Windows 8 machine to Windows 7, I needed another source. Aha! Why not see what I can find at microsoft.com? I found the following image at windows.microsoft.com:
Here is what I found in its metadata:
Adobe Photoshop CS5.1
Thank you, Mr. Green, and welcome VodkaPunidt readers.
Mary Jo Foley asks the question over at ZDNet. (H/T, Wombat-socho).
I suspect the correct answer is, “It’s a desert topping that tastes like floor wax.”
But that is the level of success achieved by most products that are “solutions” in search of real-world problems.
That’s the opinion of The Register. (H/T, Wombat-socho) Their article describes the OS as underperforming, overly closed, and running on a device (The Surface RT) that competes with Microsoft’s OEM customers. It criticizes Microsoft’s poor advertising campaign.
Everything the article mentions is a valid criticism, and, taken together, they’re more than enough to sink the product, but the article misses the principal reason for the failure. There was no real niche for The Surface RT as an ubertablet, and Microsoft, unlike Apple with the iPad, has not been able to create one. Other than a few techies, no one I know who wants a lightweight portable device wants a “tablet.” They all want iPads.
Zune. Vista. The Surface RT. Windows 8. When will they fire Steve Ballmer?
I’m reminded of The Ransom of Red Chief.
Smitty takes a look at that question when he considers how the government grew to reach critical morass.
Which operating system has more systems deployed: Microsoft’s Win*, or the various Unix flavors (with Apple’s line standing far closer to Unix)? Linux, in particular, is wrecking all non-desktop comers (supercomputers, routers, servers) because Linus Torvalds is ruthlessly anti-bloat. The U.S. Code is far more like Windows, with its tendency to add more layers of noise atop the existing crap, without insufficient trimming of legacy crap.
Ruthless focus on first principals is the difference between Apple under Steve Jobs and Microsoft under Steve Balmer. It’s the difference between George Patton and William Westmoreland. It’s the difference between spectacular success and meh.
And, yes, all the computers in my business and my household run either some form of Mac OS or Linux, and all my families mobile devices run iOS.
I wasn’t going to bother with commenting on the Microsoft Surface, the tablet they unveiled yesterday, but …
UPDATE—The Daily Caller has a gallery of other Microsoft fiascos.