March 22, 2006

A Mac Under The Tree

Jim Allchin explained Vista is getting delayed a few more weeks and will not be produced by Santa's workshop in 2006. Perhaps the Allchin "few weeks" language is an inside joke directed at industry folks. (It is a common joke in software to slip a deadline a day at a time when you have no idea when you'll be done.) A 50-million-line project does not slip by one-week-here and one-week-there unless it is a continuous slide. Elephants take big steps. Might be funny if Chris's bonus wasn't on the line.

It is time to switch to software that is lighter on its feet. In the years since XP, Apple has moved all its customers to the world's first successful consumer Unix; redefined the music industry with iPod and iTMS; and migrated smoothly from PowerPC to Intel CPUs. Since 2001, Apple has turned the tables. And they have delivered the one thing that you want from your desktop computers in a world that is increasingly online: simplicity.

Besides, Macs are fun. This is the year to put a Mac under the Christmas tree.

There is quite a thread raging on Channel 9, with lots of msft employees and msft watchers being angry with each other, discussing everything from "broken promises" to "unfair pay." And there is an amazing thread of comments on mini trying to pin the blame - and sharing the pain.

"Just imagine what we all could have done if we were truly free to code our hearts out and create the next generation," comments one anonymous msft employee on mini who wants to throw out Windows and start over. It is a familiar sentiment; that's the bet Jobs and NeXT brought to Apple in 1997. But starting over is not how Microsoft works.

How is it that 94% market share can be such an unhappy place?

Update 3/24: a day later, a big reorg is announced and Office is pushed into 2007 to go with Vista. Sinofsky wins the biggest game of schedule chicken ever.

Posted by David at March 22, 2006 08:43 PM
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