In an interview with ZDNet, Ballmer said his biggest regret as CEO was in how Windows Vista was developed.
The aftermath of Vista is precisely when he should have resigned. CEOs of other tech companies have resigned for lesser debacles.
The NSA scandal has been so earth-shattering with regards to raising awareness of government surveillance that concerns over civil liberties now outweigh concerns over protecting the country. The shift is across party lines as well. It's no wonder politicians of either party have been decrying a rising trend of libertarianism. Whether or not it's accurate to classify today's anti-government fears as such, the fact that the U.S. has become the kind of country to seek asylum from is staggeringly insane. The "trust us" defense isn't good enough.
If you mean that their disinterest in HD in 2006 didn't hurt them, I agree with regard to the first few years of the Wii's life, but its lack of power eventually caught up with them when cross-platform developers left the Wii. Today, the Wii U isn't selling because it doesn't have much first-party software available to showcase the system. Miyamoto acknowledged that this is the result of underestimating the scale of labor required for HD development and subsequently having to delay their software releases (another area where it's behind is in providing competitive online services). The rest of the industry went through this transition this seven years ago, and Nintendo was able to ignore it at the time because of the money they were making.
Nintendo dragged its feet in the move to HD and is paying the price. They underestimated the time and money expense, and now their first-party releases are behind. On top of that, there's barely been any marketing for the Wii U, which has a name that implies it's an accessory for the Wii rather than a new console. The console's tablet controller doesn't offer anything that people's existing smartphones and iPads can't do better. It was likely released in reaction to the iPad (Nintendo stated in 2010 that Apple is their biggest threat). With the lack of hardware power and user base, there's nothing with which to court third-party developers, who are focused instead on the more powerful consoles coming out later this year.
Nintendo's stronghold remains handheld gaming. However, even that is under threat from smartphones. On top of what Android already supports, iOS 7 will ship with native physical controller APIs, and Apple is working with hardware manufacturers to release official attachments and wireless controllers. While the 3DS certainly won't disappear, it will be interesting to watch how well it fares among adult gamers when physical controllers become commonplace in the iPhone accessory aisle.
"They don't want the voice of reason spoken, folks, 'cause otherwise we'd be free. Otherwise we wouldn't believe their fucking horseshit lies, nor the fucking propaganda machine, the mainstream media, and buy their horseshit products that we don't fucking need, and become a third world consumer fucking plantation, which is what we're becoming. Fuck them! They're liars and murders. All governments are liars and murderers, and I am now Jesus. Now. And this is my compound."
- Bill Hicks, Live at Laff Stop in Austin
People have invested in iOS and Android apps, leaving little incentive to switch. Additionally, WinRT lacks functionality compared to Win32. Microsoft has become reactive and conservative, following what others do rather than leading. They had the opportunity years ago to shake things up with the Courier tablet, which was focused on content creation. The project was killed because Bill Gates wanted it to be a more traditional device that interfaced with Office.
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