Matt Asay has an interesting article at The Register. In it, he argues that Microsoft needs to adapt to the world that has evolved around it, and do something drastic. This article references a Wall Street Journal article/post on the state of Microsoft and the lack of motion of its share price over the last decade.
In the quoted WSJ article, Matt points to a paragraph that I’ll repeat here:
Even disregarding Microsoft’s bubble valuation when Mr. Ballmer took over in 2000, the stock has been the proverbial dead money for a decade … At bottom, this is a corporate governance problem. Manifestly, the solution is not to let management keep stepping up to the plate with shareholder money and promising home runs that never materialize…
That is, hold them accountable for failure, and more to the point, question the business objectives and assumptions behind various efforts.
One obvious one is HPC. How, exactly, is Microsoft planning on turning its HPC offering into a billion dollar per year revenue source, rather than a loss maker?
There are other obvious ones, such as the Kin, WinCE, etc.
I’ve argued in the past that they are trying too hard to be all things to all people. Going after Google in search, and failing … again, and again, and … Building an Xbox game console, and not making much money in that division. And so on.
Matt argues that they should go long on open source. I agree, but in a different way than I think he opines in this article.