@PaulMest:, this is my take on the AppFactory approach - it is currently in 2 out of 54 countries which is hardly African but still a start. These two countries have hosted Microsoft's more "prestigious" campuses as far as Africa is concerned but they are hardly the growth areas in Africa as far as software development and ICT is concerned.
on the dev challenge - windows 8 apps are still a challenge (read unprofitable) to build for a market that is hugely android's - when this changes, we shall join the bandwagon in droves.
It's been a number of weeks since I was on channel 9 and what a way to welcome me back.... first topic off the blocks – Africa! Let me begin by saying as an African, I laud Microsoft in its 4Africa initiative – the clarion call for many African nations these days is – TRADE NOT AID possibly because Trade is more sustainable and has more dignity. Trade is partnership while Aid is simply "helping out a brother" and generally comes with conditions that pose social-cultural challenges to implement. Due to time I will not comment on Laura's plethora of comments that reeked of ignorance of the continent (second largest by Population and Size) but would rather like to know – What is an African App? Considering Africa is so...so diverse... I mean, having over 1 billion people speaking over 3,000 languages (and therefore belonging to a similar number of cultural groups) distributed over 54 countries and 7 territories. Some countries like Nigeria having over 500 different language groups within its borders and others like Somalia have only one. What is an African App? Who is this that is building these mythical "African" Apps for us? Have they visited any part of Africa? (Watching Nat Geo doesn't count) I would advise Microsoft to use "African" brains in getting "African" type content – because yes we do write software "down here" too and we would be better placed to write useful context relevant content (at least for the area the devs come from). Otherwise it's an exercise in futility and will not amount to much!
Godspeed! May you live long and prosper! about the iPad app...well as an entrepreneur one needs to fish where the fish are... currently Microsoft is building a pool for tablet type fishes - who can blame you? farewell thee, ping will not be the same without you.... while people are focusing on the China office vacancies THERE IS A VACANCY ON PING...Laura are you talking résumés? I am pretty sure I can do that 'pinging each other' gesture better than Paul.
I'm glad I'm quite possibly your favorite person, you are mine as well. maybe except for Richard Simmons, because I mean... who desn't like Richard Simmons??? bwahaha. BTW I love how you both try to figure out my name... Good luck!
P.S. I must figure out how to make my comments shorter, it's a sickness really. maybe by not adding a P.S. to them... ohhh the irony.
While I am not picking a horse in this race. random videos on youtube shouldn't count - unless you are willing to change how you pronounce 'Nebuchadnezzar' to this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_YrfL-XJNBE just because I pasted that link.