AdamBa writes "Speaking to financial analysts and reporters, Bill Gates admitted that .NET hadn't caught on as quickly as he had hoped. The headline ('Gates admits .NET a "misstep"') is a bit misleading; he doesn't think all of .NET was a misstep, just the My Services part (aka Hailstorm). He also said that labelling the current generation of enterprise products as .NET might have been 'premature.' Summary: Microsoft got too excited about locking in users via Hailstorm and botched the overall .NET message." There's also a Reuters report and a NYTimes story on the same subject, which includes the interesting line: "Microsoft also warned today that the era of "open computing," the free exchange of digital information that has defined the personal computer industry, is ending." It isn't clear if Microsoft is talking about something happening beyond their control, or if they're boasting about ending it.