Close observers of Microsoft saw Jon DeVaan’s exit from Redmond software giant as no surprise.  In late September we reported Terry Myerson forced him out of his position as head of CSOD (Windows Core Operating System Division): Myerson has removed some of Sinofsky’s other lieutenants from power including Grant George, Antoine Leblond and Jon DeVaan. (see: Terry Myerson Flexes His Muscle, Removes Sinofsky’s Lieutenants From Power) Devaan was a mentor to Steven Sinofsky and many other high profile employees at Microsoft.  DeVaan had been with the company since 1984 and became a multi-millionaire after the Microsoft’s IPO in 1986.  Many of the standard engineering practices within Microsoft were created by DeVaan after he was charged with the task by Bill Gates himself.  See our post from yesterday: Veteran Microsoft Engineering Leader Jon DeVaan Leaving The Company After 30 Years Just as an aside, for our readers in Seattle, you may recall Jon’s wife, ...

Read More →

The powers that be at Microsoft unleashed their attack dog, Frank Shaw to punch back at the tech press; justifiably so, I only wish they would have done it sooner.  For the past few days we have seen nothing “news articles” slamming Ballmer.  Sure he has made some major mistakes, but there was not even a slight attempt to balance the coverage even slightly.  The problem is that what is written on tech blogs is regurgitated into the mainstream press.  For example Forbes call Ballmer the worst CEO ever of any publically traded company. Ballmer doubled profits, tripled revenues and served as Bill Gates’ right hand man since near the inception of the company.  Half of Microsoft’s billion dollar businesses came to fruition under Ballmer.  Ballmer certainly wasn’t the greatest CEO ever but given the circumstances and the situation he inherited I thought he did an okay  job.  And it’s ...

Read More →

Mary-Jo Foley got 15 minutes with Ballmer (as well as a number of other reporters), he talked about his biggest regret: Oh, you know, I’ve actually had a chance to make a lot of mistakes, and probably because, you know, people all want to focus in on period A, period B, but I would say probably the thing I regret most is the, what shall I call it, the loopedy-loo that we did that was sort of Longhorn to Vista. I would say that’s probably the thing I regret most. And, you know, there are side effects of that when you tie up a big team to do something that doesn’t prove out to be as valuable. Source: Mary-Jo Foley ...

Read More →

Microsoft CEO today revealed his plans to retire from Microsoft within 12 months from now. Steve wrote a letter to all the employees of Microsoft, read it here. In an interview to Seattle Times, Steve spoke on few things that are interesting. On why he retired before his youngest son went to college - “so we have a successor in place so we can lead a multi-year journey, or  I would have to sign up long enough so I don’t leave mid-stream.” His biggest accomplishment - “giving birth to the notion that people are going to use intelligent devices for their own personal usage.” “When I joined Microsoft, my parents asked me two questions,” he said. “My dad asked: ‘What’s software?’ My mom asked me: ‘Why would a personal ever need a computer?’” Microsoft played “an incredible role in making personal intelligent devices happen,” while also returning profits and cash ...

Read More →

A very personal email from Steve Ballmer to all Microsoft employees explaining he will retire within the year: I am writing to let you know that I will retire as CEO of Microsoft within the next 12 months, after a successor is chosen. There is never a perfect time for this type of transition, but now is the right time. My original thoughts on timing would have had my retirement happen in the middle of our transformation to a devices and services company focused on empowering customers in the activities they value most. We need a CEO who will be here longer term for this new direction. You can read the press release on Microsoft News Center. This is a time of important transformation for Microsoft. Our new Senior Leadership team is amazing. The strategy we have generated is first class. Our new organization, which is centered on functions and ...

Read More →

Sad news for us longtime Microsoft observers, Steve Ballmer has announced he will retire within the year. During the re-org it was hinted that he wanted a natural successor to emerge many times. Read the official statement, we’ll have a full analysis later today: REDMOND, Wash. — Aug.23, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer has decided to retire as CEO within the next 12 months, upon the completion of a process to choose his successor. In the meantime, Ballmer will continue as CEO and will lead Microsoft through the next steps of its transformation to a devices and services company that empowers people for the activities they value most. “There is never a perfect time for this type of transition, but now is the right time,” Ballmer said. “We have embarked on a new strategy with a new organization and we have an amazing ...

Read More →