Microsoft as a brand isn't "cool" - probably never will be (Again? was it ever?).
Yes, it was once. Because it wasn't IBM.
That abandoned all Unix ports of their software many, many versions ago?
Ermm. thats not true at all really. I'm always up for a bit of Autodesk bashing but Maya, Mudbox, 3DSMax, Softimage, Flame all run on Linux. In fact its CAD which is the odd one out really in their product lineup. Also the Area community isn't too shabby tbh. Oh, and FBX is pretty open really. I'm not an Autodesk fanboy by any means I'm an old Alias/Wavefront fanboy who is still bitching about some of the weird things they've done to Maya.
Biology grows on you.