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Ray Ozzie To Step Down From His Role At Microsoft

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the is-this-the-extinguish-part dept.

Microsoft 229

denobug writes "Ray Ozzie, Chief Software Architect at Microsoft, is stepping down. He is to remain with Microsoft until he retires, focusing his efforts 'in the broader area of entertainment where Microsoft has many ongoing investments,' based on a memo from Steve Ballmer. Also according to Steve's memo, the role of CSA was unique and it will not be filled."

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End of Azure (1, Troll)

smist08 (1059006) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940746)

Does this mean MS is killing the Azure platform? Or maybe Bill Gates is returning from the hinterland? Or are employees just leaving one by one until only Steve Balmer is left to turn off the lights?

Re:End of Azure (4, Funny)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940806)

That's ridiculous. We all know that Ballmer would be perfectly happy to dance around a giant empty building while clapping and shouting "Developers, developers, developers, developers."

Re:End of Azure (1)

euphemistic (1850880) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941350)

If I could mod you +1 "Mental imagery", I totally would.

Re:End of Azure (1, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941444)

"Step Down From His Role" Does that include no more wiping Ballmer spooge off his chin?

How's that for "imagery"?

Re:End of Azure (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941470)

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Re:End of Azure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941544)

Boy, that must be SOME BJ...

Re:End of Azure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941446)

Lights on, lights off. Lights on, lights off.

Ray's Real Job (2, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941514)

Was official "Do Nothing".

He was installed, to keep the board and principal shareholders mollified at the prospect of a Gates departure that left the Corporation in the hands of clueless Sales executives.

"Here, Ray! Stand here, hold this, and grin."

If BillG had gone without a Ray Ozzie in place, everyone would have seen the previous 5 years of Ballmer-led "performance" - then headed for the metaphorical exit. Microsoft, instead of trading in the lackluster mid-twenties, would have been an instant 9-dollar-stock, eventually nosing up to 12 or 16...

Too many multi-millionaire, club members would have bathed on that one - Including Gates, Ballmer and Allen. So. What to do? Get yourself a scarecrow, like Ozzie, and stand him at the end of the field.

God! is there nothing about Microsoft that is not some sad, hollow sham?

Death metal (2, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942020)

I loved ozzie's music. He should bite the head off balmer like a bat.

Re:End of Azure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33940808)

" Also according to Steve's memo, the role of CSA was unique and it will not be filled."

I read that as no "Jobs" here. Let the fragmentation extend!

Re:End of Azure (4, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940812)

I think it is an admission that Chief Software Architect as implemented at Microsoft was just a nice sounding title to hand to one of the old crowd so they could feel they were still contributing.

Re:End of Azure (4, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940850)

You don't think a software company needs a chief software architect?

Re:End of Azure (3, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940886)

Well, what's left that we can yet copy from iTunes, Sony, OS X, Java, VMware and Amazon?

Re:End of Azure (4, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941022)

I think its more like having a single technical lead in a powerful position is a bad thing for management because they keep asking hard questions. So lets split the role into smaller project based positions, leaving the strategy to management and marketing.

Re:End of Azure (3, Interesting)

williamhb (758070) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942080)

I think its more like having a single technical lead in a powerful position is a bad thing for management because they keep asking hard questions. So lets split the role into smaller project based positions, leaving the strategy to management and marketing.

Having a single technical lead across a company as diverse as Microsoft possibly is a bad thing -- should SQL Server, Word, XBox Live, and Phone 7 all be managed by the same technical lead? Is that one person really going to have a deep understanding of all the technical, business, and user issues across all the products, or are they inevitably going to skew towards their favourite area, or not have enough time to devote to all the areas to be both effective and timely? I suspect Ozzie just found there wasn't enough time in the day anymore. For Gates, being across everything probably worked better -- the whole company was his baby; for Ozzie, coming in from the outside and trying to be across everything might have been harder.

Re:End of Azure (1)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941316)

"Well, what's left that we can yet copy from iTunes, Sony, OS X, Java, VMware and Amazon?"

Yeah, that amazon one-click was the killer app of the 90's. Java? Meh. And iTumes... who'd a thought you could set up an on-line store where you could buy songs for .99 per... AND PEOPLE WOULD ACTUALLY PAY IT. (Any sane actuarial accountant or social economist will tell you the real value of digital pop media is much less.)

THAT'S INNOVATION. Oh yeah.

Re:End of Azure (2, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941424)

Don't bitch at me. These are all other people's money makers, that MS slavishly copied, without any profitable revenue coming back to them.

When I mentioned Amazon, I was specifically referring to EC2 and S3.

Re:End of Azure (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941516)

Meh on Java? Where do you think .NET came from?

Re:End of Azure (2, Funny)

billcopc (196330) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941990)

Delphi.

Re:End of Azure (-1, Offtopic)

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Re:End of Azure (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33940926)

"Software architects" are by far one of the worst things that can happen to a company that develops software products.

Instead of developing useful software products that improve the efficiency of their customers, such companies spins their wheels developing "frameworks" that are rife with "patterns", "inversion of control", "service-oriented architectures", "clouds", and all sorts of other nonsense. Yet somehow these frameworks end up being hugely complex piles of shit. The original software products end up being ignored or remain undeveloped, since so many resources went into developing these cock-awful frameworks.

Re:End of Azure (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941050)

I suppose it depends on how these things have worked for you. I would love to see a software architect in my company who would put a stop to just these problems.

Re:End of Azure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941118)

Such a person couldn't be considered a "software architect" then. The very definition of a "software architect" is one who makes simple things way the fuck too complex, and complex things damn near impossible.

What you're looking for is merely a team of software developers who see "software architecture" for the bullshit that it is. The GCC, LLVM, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and Linux communities, for instance, do a fantastic job of keeping "software architecture" in check, while still developing amazingly complex, practical and very high-quality software.

Re:End of Azure (4, Interesting)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941150)

The GCC, LLVM, FreeBSD, OpenBSD and Linux communities, for instance, do a fantastic job of keeping "software architecture" in check, while still developing amazingly complex, practical and very high-quality software.

Yeah but at enormous cost (if you count the labour involved) because it is basically a test of strength on the mailing lists and forums with the last man standing getting to make the decision.

Re:End of Azure (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941590)

Survival of the fittest.

Re:End of Azure (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942064)

GCC? Stallman didn't even believe in precompiled headers according to a NeXTStep employee, and he refused to add the feature to GCC. His GPL policy regarding linking with GCC is one of the reasons Clang/LLVM has so much support in the first place.

Linus has also done shitty things to hold Linux back, like when he refused and criticized someone's VM scheme...until it was cloned by another kernel developer he was used to working with.

Re:End of Azure (4, Insightful)

lucm (889690) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941262)

> Instead of developing useful software products that improve the efficiency of their customers, such companies spins their wheels developing "frameworks"

To the contrary, most decent software architects will prevent the idle developers from writing YAF.

> that are rife with "patterns", "inversion of control", "service-oriented architectures", "clouds", and all sorts of other nonsense.

I heard that kind of statement a few years ago... where was it... oh yeah I remember, it was the mainframe guy at his retirement party, he was also talking about the good ol' days of CICS and hierarchical databases, and how nobody needs a GUI, textmode 80x25 was optimal.

A good software architect is someone with experience that will define the orientations and overview the selected design patterns; as such he is instrumental in improving the quality and avoiding useless complexity.

Re:End of Azure (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941626)

You can't "avoid useless complexity" when you're dealing with "orientations" (whatever the fuck those actually are) and "design patterns" (deficiencies in the programming language you're using).

You don't need "software architects". You just need a small number of developers who can actually code, and that are using a sufficiently-expressive language to not need "design patterns".

I know, I know. You'll claim it's difficult to find developers like that. In reality, it's not. You just have to offer them a good salary. Sure, you could buy 450 shitty Indian developers with the same salary as three or four good developers, but those three or four developers will be tens of thousands of times more productive than your shitty Indian developers.

Re:End of Azure (4, Interesting)

lucm (889690) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942154)

> You don't need "software architects". You just need a small number of developers who can actually code

Clearly you do not have a lot of experience in big environments, where people come and go because the workload is not the same all the time. In that type of workplace, where contractors are part of the landscape, design patterns and architecture orientations are a must, otherwise each time you bring in someone new you go again all over the same sterile discussions about PHP Vs Perl, Web Vs Fat client, Plain DAL Vs ORM, and whatnot. Not having a clear set of design patterns will lead to a mess, quick.

Faced with this problem, typical core developers usually come up with overkill rules, such as very detailed naming conventions and flowerbox documentation requirements, and quickly you end up with reams of paper wasted and no improvement. Then someone brings up an idea of using a common library, and from there it's a sure path to Yet Another Framework.

Software architecture is a trade, a specialized one, and maybe small companies can't afford one (usually the same that won't pay for a good DBA) but it does not mean there is no need for this skillset. Being able to establish efficient guidelines and avoiding the pitfalls of frameworks and other common mistakes requires a specific expertise.

> and that are using a sufficiently-expressive language to not need "design patterns".

When you work on relatively complex systems, design patterns are not bound to the programming language, especially since the said system can require more than one language. And even if you are lucky enough to work on a software solution that can be done with a single language, there are usually more than one way to do something - so you still need design patterns.

> I know, I know. You'll claim it's difficult to find developers like that. In reality, it's not. You just have to offer them a good salary. Sure, you could buy 450 shitty Indian developers with the same salary as three or four good developers, but those three or four developers will be tens of thousands of times more productive than your shitty Indian developers.

I don't agree. Remember a few years ago when everything was about code generators and whatnot? I remember being amazed by JBuilder and TogetherJ where all I needed to do was draw a class diagram in UML, and automagically the stubs were created in the java source files.

Well guess what: reality won (again) and the cheapest and more efficient code generator there is Southeast Asia. At some point it is more cost-effective to have a good analyst write specific requirements (even maybe executable requirements) and have the code done somewhere in India or China. Sounds silly, but it beats the shit out of all those scaffolding solutions. Does it mean you can outsource everything? Of course not, but don't underestimate the economics of expandable code monkeying.

It's just like the Y2K madness. With mainframe and proprietary locked code that could not be updated in time, one of my biggest customer had a big team of engineers working around the clock to find a way to move data out of the mainframe before the crash. And the most efficient solution they came up with was "Marge Protocol": bring in shitloads of data-entry clerks to read on one machine and type on the other one. Did the job pretty well. Cheap labor 1, software engineering 0.

Re:End of Azure (1)

nonguru (1777998) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942140)

Never met a software architect that went beyond upgrading the server rack or adding yet more virual machines to compensate for bad design decisions (made by the previous sw architects).

Re:End of Azure (1)

lucm (889690) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942222)

> Never met a software architect that went beyond upgrading the server rack or adding yet more virual machines to compensate for bad design decisions (made by the previous sw architects).

Well maybe you met people that did some hardware upgrade or created virtual machines, but those people were not software architect. They would be called "sysadmins" or something like that, perhaps with a "Senior" or "Team Lead of" prefix. So you either misread their business card or you worked in a company where people picked job titles from a box of Cap'N Crunch.

"Confusion will be my epitaph"
    -King Crimson

Re:End of Azure (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941684)

"hugely complex piles of shit."

Can you simulate that with enough computing power at say 17,000 nanoseconds per diem.

Can they model the Big Bing?

The CSA is gone, long live the CSA. Um no. Really. Never mind.

--

The bathroom is upstairs over the driveway.

Re:End of Azure (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942040)

"Software architects" are by far one of the worst things that can happen to a company that develops software products.

Heaven forbid the software that these companies produce has some sort of coherent structure!

Microsoft does have a tendency to come out with major framework releases every few years. But part of that is that the newer frameworks and libraries are significant improvements over their predecessors - try writing software for bare Win32 without any framework layers and you'll see exactly why MFC was a big help. And then after working on MFC for a little while, you'll really appreciate what .NET brought to the table. I've only dabbled in Windows programming, but they really have moved from extremely ridiculously painful to a pretty mild pain.

I should also point out that all the concepts you decry were created to solve real-world problems. SOA sounds like a worthless piece of crap until you realize that it enables you to share logic without sharing internals, hardware, or linkage. Clouds may sound silly the way the marketers talk about them, but efficient and effective use of networked hardware and bandwidth hardly sounds like a bad idea. All this architecture stuff done right means that they can get that nice new feature you really really wanted in done in 3 months instead of 5.

Re:End of Azure (1)

nonguru (1777998) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942096)

That's the academic variant of the species. There are SW Architects that actually parse theory into working platforms that have to run on actual hardware in real-time and interface to actual clients within a deadline that isn't on the other side of the decade. This is the sub-species that are otherwise known as Systems Engineers.

Re:End of Azure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33940972)

or maybe like Michelle Obama... After her husband was elected to the senate, she was promoted to Chief Pork (or was it Diversity?) Officer. An important job, no doubt. So important that after she left, they didn't need another one.

Re:End of Azure (0)

drachenstern (160456) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940978)

I'm just gonna wait and see what Paul Thurott has to say on WW

Re:End of Azure (1)

SteeldrivingJon (842919) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941726)

"Old Crowd"?

Ozzie only joined Microsoft in 2005.

This is /., not FOX News. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33940852)

Instead of just asking bullshit leading questions, you should make some statements of fact or opinion, and we can discuss those.

Re:This is /., not FOX News. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941216)

Instead of just asking bullshit leading questions, you should make some statements of fact or opinion, and we can discuss those.

Has Ray Ozzie admitted to killing the Azure Services Platform in 2010? Now, I'm not saying that Ray Ozzie killed the Azure Services Platform in 2010. On the contrary, I believe that Ray Ozzie DID NOT kill the Azure Services Platform in 2010. It is very possible that he did do it, though. Please, give us solid proof that he did NOT kill the Azure Services Platform in 2010. If he didn't, why won't he deny these allegations?

Re:This is /., not FOX News. (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942016)

Where are my mod points where I need them ? Sarcasm win!

Re:This is /., not FOX News. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941578)

He asked very legitimate questions. How are they leading when he is asking? Asking can't be leading by definition. His post can lead to several branches of discussion that may or may not be interesting. Your post is just spiteful and flamebait. [Ooops, sorry for the reply folks.] Anyway, I'm still curious about the questions, but instead of retyping them I will simply quote him.

Does this mean MS is killing the Azure platform? Or maybe Bill Gates is returning from the hinterland? Or are employees just leaving one by one until only Steve Balmer is left to turn off the lights?

CAPTACHA: paranoia
P.S. If you think Fox News is leading the public on by asking questions, I think you may have missed the point of journalism. And if asking questions could be leading, then the global warming activists wouldn't need all the pseudo-science. [[/S]Is this post opinion and fact based enough?]

Re:This is /., not FOX News. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941898)

The problem is Fox News asks questions like: Did Obama burn the flag or did Obama spit on the flag? Leading questions are not journalism. Leading questions are another form of manipulation, fox news may have missed the point of journalism.

Rah-rah Cloud (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941068)

According to the story on InfoWorld [infoworld.com] , Ballmer says: "Ray has played a critical role in helping us to assume the leadership position in the cloud, and [he] positioned us well for future success." So I guess that's a vote of confidence for at least some version of cloud computing for Microsoft, and I suspect whatever form it takes it's likely to keep the Windows Azure branding.

Re:Rah-rah Cloud (4, Funny)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941148)

Indeed, Ray Ozzie did play a pivotal role in helping keep Microsoft's leaders heads in the cloud.

Re:End of Azure (2, Interesting)

lucm (889690) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941360)

> Does this mean MS is killing the Azure platform?

It would surprise me. Azure is not that great so far, but recently I had to deploy an application and the money that my client saved by using SQL Azure instead of traditional hosting is huge.

Same goes with BPOS (Exchange online and other stuff, offered by MSFT). It's only about 5$ a month per 25GB inbox to have Exchange, connected to your own Windows Domain. For people who make the decision to go with Exchange this is pretty competitive. No more backups, no more DR, no more administration mistakes or forgotten critical patches. Of course there is always the alternatives, such as Google or Linux hosting, but some business are not ready to let go of Exchange, and with the features that they keep adding (such as voicemail integration) very often the business case to switch is just not there.

Re:End of Azure (1, Interesting)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941890)

Don't be silly.

For all his personal faults, Balmer has done for Microsoft what Bill Gates could not. He's made some very prudent decisions (or lack of decisions, maybe) which have had opposite results to what BG did:

* Windows has been steadily improving since Bill Gates left the helm. The last vestige of Gates' impact was seen in Office 2007 and Windows Vista, both of which were horrible.
* Stability, scalability, usability - name it, it's improved since Gates left and Balmer took over.
* Xbox was a huge fail; Xbox 360, on the other hand (while having been released under Gates and not doing that well during that time) has seen steady improvements over it's long life - and is still considered 'premiere' by many after 5 long years (since when, the PS3 and Wii have been released - to limited impact).
* Sharepoint, while it sucks giant donkey cock and is the bane of my existence, has become quite the beast, seemingly being the preferred choice for any sort of corporate extranet deployment/content management system. It is better than most of its competition at substantially lower prices.
* HyperV has become quite the mature, capable product - a far cry from the code it was based on, at this point. Microsoft has helped push virtualization forward through many of its VT-related initiatives - to the benefit of the industry as a whole.

The only thing Balmer seems to have butchered severely is the mobile handset OSes. It had potential 3-4 years ago; today, the MS offerings are has-beens and also-rans not much worth consideration (except for the older WinMo based phones, which have some merit due to Exchange/PIM and decent integration).

Xbox??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942014)

"* Xbox was a huge fail; Xbox 360, on the other hand (while having been released under Gates and not doing that well during that time) has seen steady improvements over it's long life - and is still considered 'premiere' by many after 5 long years (since when, the PS3 and Wii have been released - to limited impact)."

How can anyone be this delusional?

Microsoft has lost roughly the same amount of money on the Xbox 360 fiasco as the first Xbox marketplace failure. The only thing that has changed this time is they have gotten better at hiding the losses amongst other profitable products. They even dumped the damn Mac software guys in the same division to lessen the visible losses the Xbox guys were generating.

The Xbox 360 was quickly dumped into last place in both Asia and Europe by the Wii and then the PS3 leaving the Xbox 360 only out of last place in North America just like the first Xbox. And even with the PS3 still being priced some 100 to 150 dollars more expensive than the Xbox 360 and having been on sale a year less time(a year and a half in Europe), it is on the verge of dumping the Xbox 360 into last place in worldwide sales.

'premiere'???

The Xbox 360 has been graphically humiliated by the PS3 this gen.

The RRoD/defective hardware design is some two orders of magnitude worse than any other console in history. Along with the often called 'jet engine loud' noise it makes, the disc scratching or destroying DVD drive, and wealth of other hardware problems.

And of course the shit online service. Being forced to pay 50 dollars a year for laggy P2P online gaming is the laughingstock of the gaming world compared to PCs and the PS3 with their standard dedicated servers and free online play for everyone.

Let's not even touch the mind boggling bad motion controls Microsoft is slapping on the old Xbox 360 hardware.

The only thing that remotely comes close to the multi-billion dollar clusterfuck that is Xbox is Microsoft's search disaster.

Re:End of Azure (2, Informative)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942088)

* Windows has been steadily improving since Bill Gates left the helm. The last vestige of Gates' impact was seen in Office 2007 and Windows Vista, both of which were horrible.

Steadily improving?! The Vista debacle happened under Ballmer. Why do you attribute it to Bill Gates?

* Stability, scalability, usability - name it, it's improved since Gates left and Balmer took over.

Some examples would be nice.

Xbox was a huge fail; Xbox 360, on the other hand (while having been released under Gates and not doing that well during that time) has seen steady improvements over it's long life - and is still considered 'premiere' by many after 5 long years (since when, the PS3 and Wii have been released - to limited impact).

360 has been the same money-loser as the original. Have you forgotten the red ring of death debacle, which happened under Ballmer? You seem to think "steady improvements" is going to keep Microsoft on the edge of technology.

Sharepoint, while it sucks giant donkey cock and is the bane of my existence, has become quite the beast, seemingly being the preferred choice for any sort of corporate extranet deployment/content management system. It is better than most of its competition at substantially lower prices.

"This sucks and I hate it, which means Ballmer is good."

I'm Ray Ozzie, (4, Funny)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940786)

Bailing out from this exploding gas bag, before she burns down to the bare frame.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (2, Funny)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940836)

I thought 3 digit UIDs were a myth....

D: It is a miracle.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (0, Offtopic)

DarkKnightRadick (268025) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940866)

Nay, for there are even two and one digit UIDs, rare though they may be.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (4, Funny)

houghi (78078) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941120)

I ran a script to do a calculation and there are about 10 1 digit UIDs and around 90 2 digit UIDs.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (1, Redundant)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941164)

Yeah thats what my script found too. Its up to ten million and it hasn't found any more one digit UIDs, just the first ten.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (2, Funny)

gringer (252588) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941450)

Its up to ten million and it hasn't found any more one digit UIDs, just the first ten.

Have you checked to make sure that there aren't any in the vast space between two whole numbers? That sounds like it could be quite a complicated exercise.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (4, Funny)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941714)

Its up to ten million and it hasn't found any more one digit UIDs, just the first ten.

Have you checked to make sure that there aren't any in the vast space between two whole numbers? That sounds like it could be quite a complicated exercise.

Hey you are right. I found more low numbers right after 4294967296.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941672)

Sadly, you're both wrong. My advanced rocket science degree tells me that there's at least one more one digit UID, but it had too much to drink last night, and it's still lying down.

Re:I'm Ray Ozzie, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942344)

I ran a script to do a calculation and there are about 10 1 digit UIDs and around 90 2 digit UIDs

Yeah thats what my script found too. Its up to ten million and it hasn't found any more one digit UIDs, just the first ten.

Oh no... that's two already who discovered the special UID-Zero [wikipedia.org] , where all the ACs lurk...

Its not as funny as you think (1)

voss (52565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941488)

Just because there are 90 2-digit ids doesn't mean there are anywhere near 90 still active slashdot users with 2-digit ids.

Re:Its not as funny as you think (2, Funny)

billcopc (196330) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942032)

You're right, we should reap the dead UIDs and auction them off for great justice.

He stated the reason why (4, Funny)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940872)

He's stepping down to spend more time with his baby, Lotus Notes.

Not filled? (3, Interesting)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940894)

Also according to Steve's memo, the role of CSA was unique and it will not be filled.

This has Balmer sounding like Francisco Franco [wikipedia.org] , who created a monarchy but put in no king, only leaving himself as regent. For decades. Somehow I don't feel that Microsoft's situation isn't going to benefit any more than Spains, for the same reasons.

It could have been better. (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942284)

He could have adopted the responsibility for filling the role himself. Hm. Steve Ballmer: Chief Software Architect. Has a nice ring to it.

Let me entertain you (1)

nani popoki (594111) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940956)

You mean he didn't find Windows entertaining enough? I sure found it to be a joke.

Re:Let me entertain you (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941172)

actually, Win7 is pretty decent. Not the platforms they're launching it on, but it's fairly stable.

Re:Let me entertain you (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941492)

And chock full of DRM.

I tried it once on a computer that came with it, the moment it could not play a dvd without setting a region code on the drive I knew it was not for me.

I only even did that since dell refused to refund the OS cost. I ended up installing linux on it like I intended from the beginning. These folks seemed to think my computer belongs to the MPAA.

Re:Let me entertain you (2, Informative)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941566)

Well, you can always do what I'm doing and just install the MacOS on a well-made Win7 machine. Then dual-boot when you have to.

Re:Let me entertain you (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941678)

Dual boot? No sir, no windows in this house.

That was its once a decade test, and it failed that.

Re:Let me entertain you (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941702)

Shhhhhhhhh!!! Do you want Uncle Steve to shut us down?!? Damn, rules 1 and 2 motherfucker!!!!

Re:Let me entertain you (1)

DarkProphet (114727) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942084)

Why would I pay the dickhead tax twice? I'd rather buy a well made Win7 machine and throw a decent linux distro on it instead.

Re:Let me entertain you (3, Insightful)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941720)

And chock full of DRM.

DRM is irrelevant unless you have DRM-encumbered media.

I tried it once on a computer that came with it, the moment it could not play a dvd without setting a region code on the drive I knew it was not for me.

Every single licensed software DVD player on the planet requires a DVD region code to be set on the drive. This is hardly something unique to Windows 7, or even Windows.

These folks seemed to think my computer belongs to the MPAA.

Again, the DRM does nothing unless the owner of the copyright has DRM-encumbered their media. You're complaining about the wrong people.

Now that Ozzie's gone... (1)

helbent (1244274) | more than 3 years ago | (#33940962)

...when will Harriet leave?

(Bha-dum-dum)

Re:Now that Ozzie's gone... (1)

pornserver (1565445) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941388)

That was hilarious. I wish I can upvote you!

Huh (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941060)

Ray Ozzie, Chief Software Architect at Microsoft, is stepping down.

When did he step up exactly? He brought in Groove, which was another attempt to recreate notes within office, then fucked up live mesh trying to make it another Groove. He had little to do with Azure, didn't talk much at company meetings, didn't inspire, didn't do anything. Don't let the door slam your ass on the way out Ray

Re:Huh (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941154)

Better to keep your mouth shut and look like an idiot---
Than to open it and remove all doubt.

(I know a few manager types that should keep their mouths shut.)

Re:Huh (5, Informative)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941196)

He had little to do with Azure, didn't talk much at company meetings, didn't inspire, didn't do anything.

You sure about that? According to Wired [wired.com] , Ozzie had everything to do with Azure, and spent his first two years on the job reorganizing the company to produce a services platform for the Web. He's quite clear about his intentions and the direction he was pushing the company in his original memo [scripting.com] to Microsoft senior management, which was sent out under Bill Gates's email address. And longtime Microsoft observer Mary-Jo Foley says [zdnet.com] :

As I discovered during the course of my Red Dog meetings, Ozzie was anything but uninvolved in Red Dog and Azure. In fact, I heard from team members time and time again, without Ozzie’s oversight and direct intervention, Red Dog and the broader Azure platform wouldn’t have come together as quickly or comprehensively as they did.

Re:Huh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941332)

I have heard of Azure, but what the hell is Red Dog?

(heading to Google)

(not Bing)

Re:Huh (2, Informative)

Shemmie (909181) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941696)

.... fucked up live mesh

What I count as fucking up Live Mesh is the neutering it received between beta and "Oh Christ, we'll rename Live Sync 'Live Mesh' because people like the name. It's not that they like the product - oh no" - as the outcry [windowsteamblog.com] when it was announced proves.

Was it Ozzie who did decided to cripple a fantastic product, and turn it into the steaming pile Live Mesh 2011 is? I'm honestly curious - I'd love to know who had the vision to create the original MOE.

Re:Huh (1)

Shemmie (909181) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942046)

Sorry to answer my own post, but I got curious and did some googling. After searching around a bit I came across this blog [live.com] (opinion piece by the looks, but the quotes seem solid.)

Ozzie is now in charge of setting the future direction for the world’s largest software maker and unlike his predecessor, he has little interest in milking past successes. He is the guy behind Microsoft’s cloud computing efforts and the products and services he’s working on have little do with Windows, Office, or Server. He knows that the world is moving on and he’s trying to move Microsoft with the same pace to this new world. Some people there will go willingly. others will go screaming, while some may simply retire, unable to handle the future Microsoft. Regardless, change is happening and its clearly visible now..

So the result of all this is that you see the birth of Live Mesh. Microsoft’s Software + Services initiative...

Seems like Ozzie was the Pappa of MOE - so some short-sighted pratt ripped anything useful out of it and turned it into a toy sync program. And as that toy was released, I'm guessing they're still at Microsoft while Ozzie leaves.

TRANSLATION: Ballmer will resign in 2011 (5, Insightful)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941156)

For anyone who doesn't speak corporate-speak, or the variant they use at Microsoft, this really means the following:

Ray got fired, but at his level they don't fire you. He got fired because Microsoft is a mature business and doesn't really create anything new anymore.

Ballmer refuses to split the company up (tax reasons) so he's been given a grace period of a year to find a replacement for himself.

Here endeth the lesson.

Re:TRANSLATION: Ballmer will resign in 2011 (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941584)

Uhhhh...explain please, why exactly would you WANT them to spend all their resources creating "something new"? This is the classic Netscape problem, where they threw the baby out with the bath water and ended up going under. MS Office is nice, Windows 7 is REAL nice, my friends working server says the latest WinServer is nice, all the kids at the local college can't understand how i can get ANYTHING done without a ribbon, so they obviously hit it for the new generation, and the dorms are filled with x360s everywhere.

So what do you want them to do, pull a Tailigent/Apple Pink? WinNT kernel is just fine, and scales quite well. After switching from XP X64 to Windows 7 X64 I just can't imagine having to go back, the interface is just so much nicer and easier to deal with. While I'll give you the guy that allowed the original x360 out of the gate without sufficient fans should have been really really fired, they owned up to it with a billion dollar warranty extension and the new ones run great from what I'm told. The only real fails I've seen is trying to compete with iSteve and the RDF when it comes to mobile/PMPs, which just give it up, that man could sell ice cream to Eskimos!

So what EXACTLY is wrong with going the way they're going?

Re:TRANSLATION: Ballmer will resign in 2011 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941796)

LOL...

Did you actually just try to use the eight year long seven to eight billion dollar Xbox fiasco as some example of how Microsoft is doing things right?

Boggle...

THURSDAY, Oct 18, 2010? (1)

Godskitchen (1017786) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941178)

From TFA:

From: Steveb
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2010
To: Microsoft – All Employees
Subject: Ray Ozzie Transition

Huh?

Re:THURSDAY, Oct 18, 2010? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941270)

Thursday, October 18, 2010

Apparently somebody fucked up the Date handling code and Ray has to take the fall.

Re:THURSDAY, Oct 18, 2010? (1)

thoughtsatthemoment (1687848) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941690)

Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2010

Are you implying everyone should use the same calender in the multi-universe?

Groove-y (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941362)

It's easy to forget that Ozzie was given the CSA spot in conjunction with MS buying his company Groove Networks. I dunno if he deserved that spot or not, but it was part of the deal. Now part of MS Office, Groove was a collaboration suite borne out of lessons learned during Ozzie's Lotus Notes days (Notes went to IBM). I really think the law of averages is just catching up with these guys. Gates, Ballmer, Ozzie, etc are not paragons of wisdom but simply among the lucky folks who applied a little know-how at the right moment of the information revolution. It's natural that Ozzie and his Groove fade into the annals of MS history.

MS could have owned the cloud (4, Interesting)

bolivershagnasty (1924072) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941376)

Microsoft never did understand Lotus Notes. It was like a alien language. They just didn't get it. I experienced this first hand, having worked with both Lotus and Microsoft. When Gates hired Ozzie he hoped that MS would get his vision for the Internet. Even after Ozzie made huge headway with Azure, the Windows 8, 9 , 10 people still didn't get it. They just want to do fat OS's, Office and dabble in media. I though Balmer had Ozzies back, but if he tried, he just didn't get it either. In desperation, Ozzie decided to leave (I am guessing) because MS could have been the leader in the cloud with the only true operating system designed for the cloud. Now MS will just be another cloud player and the legacy OS, et al people will keep driving the company into the ground. Well, they had their chance.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (4, Funny)

bkaul01 (619795) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941414)

Microsoft never did understand Lotus Notes.

Neither did any of the users who were forced to try to use it.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (1)

bolivershagnasty (1924072) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941484)

Well, I understood it, loved it and still use it. It takes a person who can think like Ozzzie. Not everyone can. i spent 40 years designing software and I find the concepts of Notes (and now Azure) second to none. I guess you don't have a mind for it.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (1)

tautog (46259) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941552)

I guess you don't have a mind for it.

That makes me shiver...

It's not a leap forward if nobody actually leaps (4, Insightful)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941732)

I used Lotus Notes for many years, starting with version 3, and I got the impression that there was some sort of philosophy behind it, but I just couldn't figure out what it was; I admit I got tangled up in the interface. A good friend of mine was a Lotus Notes admin, and while I believe he "got it", the hoops the interface made him go through to do various tasks (backing up a database by copy-n-paste because it was the only "reliable" way?) negated whatever deeper benefits the platform provided.

Ultimately it comes down to execution; the web has its shortcomings, but it's simple enough that people "get it" and can use it effectively. Being relatively simple and text-based, it encourages experimentation without needing to worry that the underlying database can somehow can be corrupted or external links permanently invalidated. It doesn't hurt either the the web itself is basically "free", while Notes was (is still?) quite expensive.

I don't want to get all Godwin here, but I think a decent analogy is that Notes is a Tiger tank; sophisticated and extremely powerful, but ultimately done in by the cheap and plentiful Sherman. It doesn't mean that the Tiger wasn't better than the Sherman, it's just that the Sherman won by sheer volume.

Ozzie may be a brilliant guy, with an IQ of 100!, but if he can't execute his ideas in a way that people nowhere near as smart (say, 2!) as him can use, what's the point? History is littered with people who had brilliant ideas but are forgotten because they botched the execution. Having used both Notes and Groove (as I understand it the only other actual piece of software Ozzie actually worked on), he took a serious leap forward, just down the wrong evolutionary path.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941736)

Notes degrades badly when used with infrastructure which is not up to the task.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33941876)

If you've truly spent the last 40 years developing software, then that means you've been too short-sighted to see basically every single innovation that's come up during that time. You missed the rise of the minicomputer, you missed the rise of the PC, you missed the rise of the Internet, and you've missed the rise of mobile devices.

After all, you're only still programming because you never struck it rich.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941980)

i spent 40 years designing software and I find the concepts of Notes (and now Azure) second to none. I guess you don't have a mind for it.

Lotus Notes: the new Linux.

*looks at UID*
Wait Mr. 40-year developer.. are you Ray Ozzie? I'm assuming of course that I'm not talking to the Boliver Shagnasty.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941942)

Microsoft never did understand Lotus Notes.

What do you mean, are you saying they did or did not understand it?

It was like a alien language.

What do you mean, it was like a language, but not one from this planet, as if no one was able to communicate in it?

They just didn't get it.

Oh, OK. You need to say it three times for me to figure it out. Thanks.

Re:MS could have owned the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942158)

Your pedantry is born of obtusery, and you have consequently contributed nothing.

Nobody believes you had a problem understanding that post. You failed to provide a compelling counter-argument.
Stop breathing my air.

microsoft had an architect? (1)

mevets (322601) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941402)

wow. I thought it was just vms-retreaded; I mean I didn't think anybody would do that on purpose. I wonder what his next victim will be...

Re:microsoft had an architect? (1)

david.emery (127135) | more than 3 years ago | (#33941820)

I still rate VMS as the overall best OS I've ever used, including various Unix variants and Mac OS X/OS X Server. From an administrator's perspective, VMS had the same degree of user-facing consistency that Mac OS has, along with a fine-grained protection model that I'm appalled has never been deployed since. This is what Mac OS X Server should evolve to. And there are times when I really miss VMS' file versions.

The single biggest shortfall of VMS was that it was really hard to set up pipe-and-filter kinds of things, although it was doable. A good Unix shell on VMS would have been my idea of Nirvana.

I've never understood how Win NT was so bad when compared to VMS; either Dave Cutler lost it, or he was crippled with Windows compatibility handcuffs.

Re:microsoft had an architect? (1)

wandazulu (265281) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942018)

I like the versioning filesystem, and I like the idea that you have to use sysadmin-level commands to allow a program to listen on a particular port (along with being able to hard-limit how many connections the app will handle). The built-in clustering is also pretty awesome, considering how long it's been available. Having a unified help system is also pretty slick too.

That said, Unix presents the user with a filesystem tree that is entirely directory-based; no need to worry about the underlying disks themselves. Maybe it's just the local admins, but whenever they replace a disk, for some reason it can't be named the same thing as the previous one, so I have to go in and fix my com jobs (luckily not very often).

And this may seem petty, but it bites me far more often than it should, but why does the system allow me to set def ("cd" in Unix/Windows parlance) into a non-existant directory? That is the one huge aspect that I have never ever understood.

You're thinking Dave Cutler (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942362)

Dave [wikipedia.org] is the VMS guy that worked on NT. He's still there working on Azure, presumably. We might want to keep an eye on that though.

Stock and Options (1)

igadget78 (1698420) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942176)

Damn my luck again.

My Options for Microsoft stock to reach the $26.00 strike price was $.05 from hitting its target when it fluctuated again like it always does. I told myself that I was going to sell and make a nice profit as it was up nice today against its usual standards ... then my freiking gambling mentality kicked in and I said, what the heck ... its gone up almost 5 days in a row now, tomorrow it will go up more. Then almost immediately after the market closed, this news comes out and the stock dropped $.60 in a blink of an eye and I lost all my profits.

I can only hope that the Win 7 phone and Kinect somehow pull it just a bit higher so I can make back my money within the next 60 days.

That's the last time I buy options on Microsoft.

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