Is MS losing money ? retrenching ? no longer the biggest software company in the world ? I wish I could lose the way you say they've lost !
They've done well so far, but look closer at the past. A decade ago, if you wanted a personal computer, you pretty much got a PC with Windows. Only the truly hardcore went any other way. If you used a browser, it was almost certainly IE. Or if you were into graphics or a couple other niche areas, you'd get a Mac. Mac and Linux are serious alternatives now, and were not previously. Software development for portable touch screens like the PocketPC used to be a big deal, but it's pretty much irrelevant now.
In around 2004 I started my own business, and I needed database software and front end software. In my day job, I was developing using MS SQL and ASP.NET in C#. I knew the tools, they were what I was most productive in. But I had a choice: drop a bunch of cash for Microsoft tools, pirate it all from work, or go totally legit and figure out how to do it with free software. I chose to go legit, and I won't ever turn back. They had the free developer version of MS SQL, but it felt like crippleware to me. And I was in a situation where I'd need to deploy before the revenue came in, so I chose to go with real software instead of shelling out a grand for software before I had any revenue.
Wouldn't you make the same decision, too?
I submit that most people who wouldn't make that decision lack confidence in their ability to come up to speed quickly on new technologies. Plus, the free software development tools are better today than they ever were before. Also it's cheaper to deploy code that doesn't need Windows to run.:
The key reason to use Microsoft if you're starting from scratch is if you can't step up to the plate and retool yourself. And if so, be careful-- there were a lot of guys I saw growing up that wouldn't do anything other than COBOL, Fortran, and RPG/3, and didn't think they'd ever need to learn anything new.
I consider myself well versed in the universe of technology
There's the problem, right there. "Technology" in general is a terribly diverse subject, and getting more diverse with every passing moment, and at a faster rate with every passing moment. In the field of software technology, this is even more true than in most of the other sciences. If you'd been doing software development for more than 7 years you might be more sensitive to this issue. 20 or 30 years ago, there were people around that knew pretty much everything there was to know about digital computers. (This may not be true strictly speaking, but it's true enough for people like, say, Peter Norton.) Today, it's just not possible because the state of the art is progressing too quickly.
I hear what you're saying regarding not giving even a 1 line intro. But if you weren't up on Plone before, that's not slashdot's fault, that's your fault. Plone and Zope have been discussed here at length many, many times over the last several years.
I don't really want to come down on you too hard, but maybe you're not as much of a technology badass as you think.
Yes, it's very old. They also talk about using cvs for version control, and mention that that world has moved on to svn, and the world has moved on a couple of times since then even. We also use Nagios rather than more ancient monitoring software. But still the central ideas are sound, even with many details changed. And practical, too.
These ideas actually apply very much to cloud infrastructure. It's really all about the cloud-- considering a machine not as just "a machine", but instead thinking of it as having a base image with certain functionality bolted on top of it. Thinking of a machine not just as a machine, but as a replaceable/exchangeable component in a larger collective system. That essentially is cloud computing. The thing a lot of people don't consider is that even a smaller cluster of machines should/could be configuration managed, maintained, and viewed this way.
How do you deal with the clots clogging up the nib
You cleanse it with the tears of dread from your next victim, and you also need a steady stream of enemies. Once you run out of enemies, you sit on your throne and let your underlings deal with writing.
Sweet, I'm going to install Linux on all my systems. I didn't know that Linux could prevent natural and man made disasters as well as being a stable operating system. We've been wasting all this money on backup for all these years.
There's a mix of humor and catty vitriol here all around, but here is something that addresses the serious point made in Grandparent's statement about it being a "Windows" way of thinking.
Take a look at Infrastructures.org which describes a whole way of thinking about server reliability and configuration. Where I work we essentially use this approach. The fundamental concepts around this approach concentrate more on system configuration, ability to pick a random server and drop it out the window and have another one just like it online in moments. It's less about backups, and far more about a more comprehensive disaster recovery/prevention type of thing. The types of approaches described there are probably more easily implemented using Unix/Linux, but is probably also possible with Windows boxes.
Hey! I just thought of something. I wonder if the wife would have any problems with a threesome with a copy. Let me go ask.....
Truly a burning and interesting question, and one amusingly explored in the movie Duplicity. But in all serious, do talk to your wife about group sex, but I wouldn't wait for people-duplication technology.
You cannot, with a straight face, use the word "empowerment", and then make a compelling argument. The very word empowerment screams of power point jockeys and PHB.
I just meant that people can increasingly do things for themselves, rather than having to go to exports. Or that the skill level required for experts to accomplish goals isn't as high as it used to be.
But fair enough. How about different words for you, like "independence", or "self-sufficiency", or "douchebag".