Weblog:   The Human Face of Microsoft
Subject:   MS developers are just troops
Date:   2003-02-16 15:18:54
From:   anonymous2
"One of my great passions these days is to break down the barriers between Microsoft and the open source world by creating more contact between their developers."


Tim,


How on Earth do you figure that fraternizing amoung developers is going to in any way change or mollify the clear intent and purpose of Microsoft's leadership.


This reminds me of the stories of temporary suspensions of fighting during World War I at the front lines during Christmas. For a few hours, they laid down their arms and shared what food and drink they had. Then they returned to their trenches, and on the orders of the generals, proceeded to kill each other.

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  • Tim O'Reilly photo MS developers are just troops
    2003-03-01 11:48:53  Tim O'Reilly | O'Reilly AuthorO'Reilly Blogger [View]

    I don't know Bill G or Ballmer, but I do know some folks pretty high up in the organization (Jim Allchin, Eric Rudder), and while they are fierce competitors, I don't think that they are the demons that opponents like to portray them as. They are really wrestling with a hard problem -- how to be better corporate citizens, how to get better at listening to and serving customers, while also growing a business that has historically been so successful that any slowing will be punished by the market as failure. I think they can make the transition, as IBM did, and I think they want to make that transition. Simply demonizing them will just harden their positions. We have to help them find a way forward to a slightly more cooperative model.

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