I don't think it's a bad thing for Microsoft to call for volunteers.  Microsoft has done a huge amount of work to aid developers over the years, and while it does have benefit to them, my personal opinion is that they have far exceeded what they needed to do.

I think it's also great that other big companies are contributing to advancing development.  Google being a big one that comes to mind.

We still have a long way to go though.  C++ renaissance or not, it's got a tough fight in management when they're weighing it against C# and .Net, for instance.  Yes, we all know C++ is faster.  We all know it's more efficient.  But when I think about what it's like to develop with C# and .Net, with LINQ in its various forms (which are simply brilliant), reflection, etc.., and when I think about what experience new developers are likely to have, it's hard to look at C++ as a way forward.

That being said, I would really like to see that happen.  I'd like to see C++ being as pleasant to programming in as working in C# and .Net. (And garbage collection is NOT one of my main reasons).