Three weeks ago, I went to Microsoft Technology Center in Reston Virginia. I was part of the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) team which listened to Microsoft's overall strategy for the next three years, how Microsoft licenses were distributed across the FAA, and listened to their product experts regarding their new products and got a tour of their facility. It was a long session and some parts were interesting. I was amused when their product experts tried to toute the web 2.0 capabilities like creating wikis and blogs on the new Sharepoint product however I asked them if they did any research why they decided to include web 2.0 capabilities in their products. They had good reasons for the wikis since Wikis have proven to be an excellent source of knowledge via Collaborative means. However they didn't give me a good reason why they included blogging software, I realized that big companies like Microsoft provide the "new" capabilities eventhough they don't know if it will ever be used by their customers. I found that very interesting.
The other thing that I thought was hilarious was that their whole staff was taking stabs at Google. Eventhough Google and Microsoft product and services slightly overlap, I didn't think Microsoft and their employee would truly hate Google. For instance, one presentator talked about email services and used Hotmail as an example. Then he stated their products work well Yahoo and other email providers including "the other email provider who is still beta". Then he interjected, "how long are they going to have beta anyway" If you don't know what I am talking about then check out Google Mail or Gmail which is still beta.
Microsoft also stated they are rewriting their whole stack of products to introduce cloud computing since "the other company is planning to expand into this realm." Amazon.com currently provides this service and I know one person who uses their backup service and he is happy with them.
Anyway it looks like Bill Gates new tarket is "the company" that neither he or Microsoft will mention its name. "Hey Bill, 'Google' is not a buzzword but it is simply a company you are jealous of"