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Ding Dong....Microsoft ain't the company it used to be

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  • User profile image
    allenf

    I'm not proclaiming the death of Microsoft....god knows it makes enough money to keep going for the next 50 years...but Microsoft sure ain't the cool company anymore. Seems to have lost it's hustle.

     

     http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2010/07/19/apple-closes-in-on-microsoft-in-revenue-race/

     

    What say you niners? What's "cool" about Microsoft these days?

     

  • User profile image
    Dovella

    Oh No Breaking News: MSFT passes APPL in Market CAP! Tongue Out

  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    Why does a company need to be "cool" to increase revenue?

     

    Also, I don't think MS was ever "cool," at least in the way that you describe (hipsters lining up in front of store to buy the latest MS product).

  • User profile image
    Dr Herbie

    Dovella said:

    Oh No Breaking News: MSFT passes APPL in Market CAP! Tongue Out

    Can't say I've ever cared about 'cool' (I mean, just look at my avatar Tongue Out);  Microsoft's success isn't in the consumer market, it's in the 'workhorse' market of getting the job done.  I don't make money by flouncing around being arty and cool, I make my money through business applications.

     

    Herbie

     

  • User profile image
    wkempf

    MasterPie said:

    Why does a company need to be "cool" to increase revenue?

     

    Also, I don't think MS was ever "cool," at least in the way that you describe (hipsters lining up in front of store to buy the latest MS product).

    I'd say the midnight sales of Windows 95 would have qualified Microsoft as "cool" back then. That was a first in the tech industry. However, I also agree that "cool" is not all that important of a label to have.

  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    wkempf said:
    MasterPie said:
    *snip*

    I'd say the midnight sales of Windows 95 would have qualified Microsoft as "cool" back then. That was a first in the tech industry. However, I also agree that "cool" is not all that important of a label to have.

    Not that this side dicussion matters at all, but I don't think that's Microsoft being cool. I'd say that's just people being genuinely excited about a product. In a sense, the product was cool, as were Furbys, tamagochis, and the latest super soaker (I don't think people camped out at midnight because it was a Bandai product).

     

    Then again, I was a mere lad back then, and thus, I have no idea about what people's perceptions were of MS.

  • User profile image
    wkempf

    MasterPie said:
    wkempf said:
    *snip*

    Not that this side dicussion matters at all, but I don't think that's Microsoft being cool. I'd say that's just people being genuinely excited about a product. In a sense, the product was cool, as were Furbys, tamagochis, and the latest super soaker (I don't think people camped out at midnight because it was a Bandai product).

     

    Then again, I was a mere lad back then, and thus, I have no idea about what people's perceptions were of MS.

    It wasn't "cool" like Apple is today, but then, what company ever has been? Apple's/Job's RDF is something quite unique. And scary.

  • User profile image
    ManipUni

    I think Microsoft's gaming line is fairly "cool" and continues to get people excited. Windows and Office are just incubation projects that the company is too scared to mess with (or risk going out of business). Unfortunately if Microsoft doesn't get its head out of the clouds and start work on the next generation of OS's then it is going to wind up very behind. Managed Operating Systems are absolutely the wave of the future, where is Microsoft?

     

     

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    wkempf said:
    MasterPie said:
    *snip*

    It wasn't "cool" like Apple is today, but then, what company ever has been? Apple's/Job's RDF is something quite unique. And scary.

    I've looked closely at Steve's speeches and his RDF really isn't that hard to emulate, it's basic propaganda really:

     

    • If anything sounds impressive, without actually being important, announce it
    • Put a positive spin on everything
    • Put a bullet point on every new user-facing feature/component
    • Hire decent marketing/advertising guys

    ...it's that simple.

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    ManipUni said:

    I think Microsoft's gaming line is fairly "cool" and continues to get people excited. Windows and Office are just incubation projects that the company is too scared to mess with (or risk going out of business). Unfortunately if Microsoft doesn't get its head out of the clouds and start work on the next generation of OS's then it is going to wind up very behind. Managed Operating Systems are absolutely the wave of the future, where is Microsoft?

     

     

    Do I spot a pun there?... Tongue Out

  • User profile image
    exoteric

    ManipUni said:

    I think Microsoft's gaming line is fairly "cool" and continues to get people excited. Windows and Office are just incubation projects that the company is too scared to mess with (or risk going out of business). Unfortunately if Microsoft doesn't get its head out of the clouds and start work on the next generation of OS's then it is going to wind up very behind. Managed Operating Systems are absolutely the wave of the future, where is Microsoft?

     

     

    By what logic is Windows and Office incubation projects? By what empirical evidence is anyone else commercially developing competing operating systems to Windows in managed code? Is this the definition of trolling? Microsoft made Singularity, it made Helios, we know of rumors of an incubation project based on Singularity/Helios but little of the details. These are interesting things we don't have much insight into but if you want insight, follow the various discrete channels of technical content out there. Implying that these efforts do not exist or that competitors are ahead likely does not yield any fruit. I share your interest though and also believe this is the future. There are probably things that could be talked openly about and hopefully we can hear something about these things in a "research context" going forward. No doubt Channel 9 has spoiled us because you don't see such transparency with Apple, that's for sure.

  • User profile image
    JoshRoss

    I would say the freedom given to employees to publicly talk about what is on their mind, makes Microsoft a cool company.

     

    -Josh

  • User profile image
    Pace

    "What say you niners? What's "cool" about Microsoft these days?"

     

    Windows 7, Windows Server, Office 2010 I can go on... 

  • User profile image
    wkempf

    W3bbo said:
    wkempf said:
    *snip*

    I've looked closely at Steve's speeches and his RDF really isn't that hard to emulate, it's basic propaganda really:

     

    • If anything sounds impressive, without actually being important, announce it
    • Put a positive spin on everything
    • Put a bullet point on every new user-facing feature/component
    • Hire decent marketing/advertising guys

    ...it's that simple.

    If it's that simple, everyone would be doing it. If 99% of the CEOs did that, no one would believe them, and would probably even laugh at the ineptitude. There's something about Jobs/Apple that makes people believe the BS.

  • User profile image
    allenf

    wkempf said:
    MasterPie said:
    *snip*

    I'd say the midnight sales of Windows 95 would have qualified Microsoft as "cool" back then. That was a first in the tech industry. However, I also agree that "cool" is not all that important of a label to have.

    "Cool" is an important thing to have for 1 reason. People pay a premium for "cool". Look at the stock price of MSFT over the last 10 years....and it definitely isn't cool. Windows 7, Windows Server, Office 2010.....nice releases...but cool? Just re-arranging the deck chairs...that's all.

     

    When you have "cool" you get the best college hires....Microsoft used to....now google does.

     

    When you have "cool" startups work with your technology and grow the economy....now open source does.

     

    etc, etc.

  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    wkempf said:
    W3bbo said:
    *snip*

    If it's that simple, everyone would be doing it. If 99% of the CEOs did that, no one would believe them, and would probably even laugh at the ineptitude. There's something about Jobs/Apple that makes people believe the BS.

    The juxtaposition with MS. 

     

     In every other industry, there are at least 3 or 4 major competitors. Maytag vs Whirlpool vs Kenmore. Sears vs Target vs Walmart. CVS vs Brooks vs Walgreens. Sony vs Phillips vs Samsung vs Daewoo vs Panasonic vs Toshiba vs RCA vs ... . Abercrombie vs Banana Republic vs Pacific Sun vs Victoria Secret vs ... .

     

    The media usually portrays it as MS vs Apple (even though only a portion of MS directly competes with Apple). It's 1 vs 1. Flaws that are made public for MS force consumers to the "other" side. The flaws that weren't said (due to suing the press, manufacturing rose colored glasses, mind control, etc) keep consumers on this "other" side. If people say Apple is cool, then MS has to be uncool. Bring in a third competitor and suddenly it doesn't become such a big deal. The differences are less noticeable. Bring in a fourth, a fifth, maybe even get the count up to 30 and you might not even see any major differences that would force you to one company over another.

     

    So, uh, in short..it's MS' fault that it's uncool and Apple's fault that it's cool. Tongue Out

  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    allenf said:
    wkempf said:
    *snip*

    "Cool" is an important thing to have for 1 reason. People pay a premium for "cool". Look at the stock price of MSFT over the last 10 years....and it definitely isn't cool. Windows 7, Windows Server, Office 2010.....nice releases...but cool? Just re-arranging the deck chairs...that's all.

     

    When you have "cool" you get the best college hires....Microsoft used to....now google does.

     

    When you have "cool" startups work with your technology and grow the economy....now open source does.

     

    etc, etc.

    "Look at the stock price of MSFT over the last 10 years....and it definitely isn't cool."

     

    You must have some clever algorithm that no one else knows about that enables you to look at the stock price to determine a company's cool factor.

  • User profile image
    wkempf

    allenf said:
    wkempf said:
    *snip*

    "Cool" is an important thing to have for 1 reason. People pay a premium for "cool". Look at the stock price of MSFT over the last 10 years....and it definitely isn't cool. Windows 7, Windows Server, Office 2010.....nice releases...but cool? Just re-arranging the deck chairs...that's all.

     

    When you have "cool" you get the best college hires....Microsoft used to....now google does.

     

    When you have "cool" startups work with your technology and grow the economy....now open source does.

     

    etc, etc.

    Google has never really had what I'd consider a "cool" factor either. At least not the same kind of "cool" factor that Jobs/Apple have. People flocked to Microsoft and Google for employment because they were good companies to work for, not because they were considered "cool". And I'd have to disagree with you about Microsoft not getting any of the "best" college graduates. There's a lot in your analysis to disagree with.

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