Archive for September, 2011

Apple v MS

Wednesday, 28th September, 2011

Prediction: Apple will be worth double Microsoft by the end of 2011. (maybe end Q1 2012 I guess)

It hardly seems like yesterday that Apples market capitalisation passed Microsoft’s, and to me it now looks like they are in line to hit 2x.

I had been waiting for Google to catch up and overtake MS but those two move in almost perfect step, even though in theory they address very different audiences. Or maybe not, as MS makes corporate SW and Google sells the same corps ads. Interestingly it looks like IBM could creep past MS on the back of some good news.

Anyway a successful iPhone 5 launch and an iPad Christmas and Apple will leave them far behind. With Android tablets largely shelfware and Windows tablets just a glint in a marketeers powerpoint, Apple still have the market pretty much to themselves, barring the odd HP givaway of course. And pcs are old news of course, IT press coverage could be summed up by Cloud, Tablet, facebook.

What do you think?

Does it really matter?

Do you see any obvious opportunities or threats in these moves. I know software devs on the Apple platforms can do very well, but I would expect most consumer type stuff to move to the web, rather than native code. For businesses searching for the last nano second of performance native dev often makes sense, but that world is not so attractive to small software dev co’s I don’t think. As someone recently said, ‘the best minds of our generation are focussed on getting more people to click more ads’.

I am assuming of course that the threatened financial system meltdown does not occur, and that neither co makes a huge acquisition, I assume the MS/Yahoo deal is now officially off (in what must be considered one of the luckiest escapes in CEO history).



Growing pains

Thursday, 22nd September, 2011

Its a known fact (so for example I don’t have to bother looking for references to prove it…) that organisations go through various growing pains as their size increases.

One big pain I see a few companies experiencing at the moment is the visionary exit pain.

Most recently Jobs announced his departure from Apple and the share price dropped 7% or something. In reality we wont know the real impact for several years as his involvement gradually works out of the product development cycle.

But I don’t want to talk about Apple, I want to talk about Microsoft.

Bill Gates was a big influence, and whilst he was at the helm Microsoft did well (it also did some things that were not so good). But as his input has declined so has Microsoft’s success.

I don’t know, but I get the feeling when he was there there was a single clear message and everyone understood, and everyone found it easy to pull in the same direction. Now it seems like, as well as consistently eating next years seed corn to make the numbers, no one really knows which way they are going.

I think of it as a camel being a horse designed by a committee. so the ribbon is a ui designed by a committee of people who don’t use the product to earn a living. And VS2010 was envisioned by a bunch of people who don’t use it day to day to solve real issues. And so it goes on, there are a few gems in there for sure, but many are becoming diluted.

So all in all current (and near future) MS is a bit meh for me, I see a lot of poor decisions gradually coming back to haunt them. But they are not alone, it seems many of that generation are struggling.

  • Yahoo – still barely alive, but Carol Bartz is my current hero for calling the board a bunch of dufusses
  • HP – in terminal decline, with CEO apparently about to depart (for the circus?)(I don’t think he would get the same welcome at Oracle as his HP predecessor.) (shares up 7% on rumour of exit – I wonder how much MS would jump on similar news??)
  • Google – very static, still limited outside search and ads. Well except for Android I guess, if they can get it back under control.

Yeah I think there are a few big names wrestling with the hand over from visionary to holding team.

Have I got any helpful advice? no not really. Have you? Any other large IT co’s you see in terminal decline?



MS does a VBA to Silverlight

Tuesday, 20th September, 2011

Anyone following this?

and now this?

Expect lots of uncertainty, no clear roadmap and a general feeling of unease. And a gradual migration away.

I sure am glad I never bothered investing time and effort in Silverlight (or as we call it fake flash). But I do have some sympathy for those that did.

Whats next for the death of a thousand silences?

I foresee lots more rationalisation, which puts some marginal techs in a dangerous place. When I say marginal, I mean for people who read IT news sites like Computer Geekly to learn what they should focus on rather than listening to their business folks. Jargon Keyword heavy Web techs = safe, Office dev = at risk.

What MS tech do you see on the endangered list?



why why?

Tuesday, 6th September, 2011

For Each yy In Worksheets(ws).Range(Cells(8, 1), Cells(8, 160))
If yy.Value = “Stop” Then
jj = yy.Column
End If
Next yy

Why would you use yy ? (nervous twitch??) (or jj)

Also note how I have generously indented it for your delight, unlike the original.



Where did everyone go?

Friday, 2nd September, 2011

Looking around some of the Microsoft Office internet properties I am reminded of this magnificent classic:

Anyone else notice the slow down?



should we be expecting Office 15 Beta 1?