Blogdex 12 January 2005 - And another one bites the dustMark Jen at Ninetyninezeros appears to another employee who got the sack because of his Iblog. Robert Scoble , who works for Microsoft, and so far hasn't been booted out, explains where Mark went wrong.
Personally, I never trust a person who won't capitalise..
Here, a flavour of Mark from a post or three back:
so lots of people have been asking me what my job actually is. contrary to some people's beliefs, my job is not to blog about google; that's what i do in my free time. i'm actually an associate product manager on adsense. that means i'm sandwiched in between being the customer advocate and harnessing all the cool stuff happening through engineers' 20% time. in my opinion, this is the best job in the industry, especially given that i'm a google customer too. so basically, i spend the bulk of my time thinking of new features or products that customers would want (read: stuff that i want) and then i organize people to build it. it's great!
On that post he segues into a story about his time at Microsoft:
before i left microsoft, i chatted with a lot of people and there was one theme that they always touched on: microsoft knows how to ship software, we know how to turn the crank. at the time i thought, yup you're right, microsoft has shipped many versions of windows, office, visual studio... the list goes on and on. for the past 15 years, microsoft has been a software shipping machine and it has become very good at it. my friends at microsoft argued for me to stay so i could absorb this knowledge and learn the "the microsoft way".
but i figured something didn't seem right. in the past few years, everyone's seen microsoft's software shipping machine start to break down - schedules have been slipping, features are getting scaled back and there's the need for a huge patching infrastructure. the system isn't working as well anymore and despite the billg's internet memo years ago, the microsoft machine hasn't reinvented itself at all.
for as much as google is confident, microsoft is stubborn in its ways. they know one way to ship software and it doesn't work as well as it used to. the microsoft way, with its huge milestones and bi-annual releases (if you're lucky), just doesn't jive with the unlimited bandwidth, unlimited memory, unlimited computing power world that is quickly becoming a reality. the future of computing isn't on the desktop, it's on the network.
i remember when i was at microsoft, i'd propose trying new engineering practices: pair programming, unit-test driven development, iterative development. these ideas were shot down quickly and the response was always, "we've been developing software like this for 20 years and look at where we are. $50 billion in the bank, dominance in multiple markets... we're one of the most successful businesses in all of history. why would we change the way we make our bread and butter?"
contrast that to google, where reinvention is almost in its blood. there's no remorse about throwing away dead code; people work however they feel makes them most productive; and now, another critical part is here: there's a product management core that can help harness that creativity and productivity into products the world loves to use.
anyways... enough commentary for today, but i'll leave you with this: while microsoft focuses much of its resources and struggles to meet its deadline for longhorn, google can easily add, enhance, reinvent and distribute products seamlessly through this new computing landscape. in a nutshell, it's the dream of the dot-commers, finally come true.
What more do you need to say abou the wonderful world of I-blogging? If you think they can't see you picking your nose at the traffic lights....