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Comment: Re:Manager (Score 1) 183

by raddan (#47438911) Attached to: New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture
You're forgetting that mobile devices need a complement to be useful: mobile services. Many of the services that we know and love-- and the many more coming down the pipeline-- all need massive amounts of computation. And the trend right now is toward more and more computation. For example, Skype (not exactly a failure) requires massive cloud resources, and the forthcoming Skype Translator will require a neural net behind the scenes.

I don't think your feelings about Windows Server contradict my point: Microsoft is moving into a software-as-a-service model. It shouldn't be surprising that you want to ditch the old model. In many ways, it doesn't matter if you don't use Microsoft handheld devices; if you do things on the Internet, you almost certainly use their cloud services. And if anything can be learned from Apple's example, it's that rapid innovation can happen when you have the capability to vertically integrate. There are really only three players out there right now that can do that: Apple, Google, and Microsoft. I think it would be silly to call any one of those companies irrelevant.

Comment: Re:Manager (Score 5, Interesting) 183

by raddan (#47438041) Attached to: New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture
(disclaimer: I have interned at Microsoft for the past three summers; I do not speak for them)

I think your criticism against lock-in is fair, and this is clearly one of Microsoft's strategies, and I suspect that it will continue to be to some degree. But on the language front, you are wrong. Not only are Microsoft's newest languages open-source (F#, TypeScript), but they are also cross-platform and collaboratively developed with open source groups. And, of course, you can run all .NET languages on the Mac, Linux, FreeBSD, etc. with mono.

While it is theoretically possible that all of this is a deadly Microsoft-bait-and-switch just waiting to happen, having worked at Microsoft, I can say that doing so would fly in the face of a lot of hard work by many, many people there. I was as critical about Microsoft as you were (dig into my /. history and you'll see) until I worked there. Not only is it a great place to work, but the company really is committed to changing its culture. Use of open-source tools at Microsoft used to be strictly-prohibited. Now they have a fast-track process for working with them. Open-sourcing of Microsoft software was also a complete non-starter. Now putting Microsoft code up on the web is increasingly routine, and they even have their own open-source hosting ala GitHub that has git bindings.

Microsoft is a big company (the Redmond campus is mind-bogglingly huge to me) and they have a lot of corporate momentum. Despite this, in my opinion, I've seen my daily interactions with people do a complete 180 in the last couple of years. Microsoft knows that the era of selling boxed copies of proprietary software is coming to an end. So you're simply wrong about Microsoft not being able to change.

Comment: Re:Good call (Score 1) 183

by digsbo (#47437819) Attached to: New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

What changed? What was different from the early days?

What changed was selling development stacks that were both first-class tools aimed at real programmers (i.e. not VB compilers as glorified spreadsheet builders), embracing and NOT extending 3rd party and open source components, and open sourcing their own stuff (i.e. Roslyn).

As a former open source guy, I find that I ENJOY using MS tools to build software, and increasingly see them working to make their stuff more and more interoperable and less and less locked in.

Comment: Re:Unsafe at any speed (above 100 MPH)... (Score 1) 411

by Tablizer (#47434343) Attached to: The First Person Ever To Die In a Tesla Is a Guy Who Stole One

Uh, I don't see a lot of halfies in your link. A front engine block may be preventing an outright split, while in a Tesla the "engines" are more distributed. Whether this means gas cars are "safer" or not in practice is another matter.

Maybe the distributed nature of Tesla's engines means that side impacts are safer at the expense of front impacts.

Comment: Re:Hasn't been true for a while (Score 4, Insightful) 477

Besides, it saves me from using Creative's bloatware.

This is what comes to my mind whenever I hear of Creative. Nice enough hardware, but shockingly bad software, 80% of which no-one ever had any need for. And it would invariably all be set up to load at boot-time, sucking up resources and RAM.

"The geeks shall inherit the earth." -- Karl Lehenbauer