Microsoft will probably be going into debt [1, 2, 3, 4, 5] more quickly than first anticipated, according to this new report from a pro-Microsoft financial Web site.
Microsoft May Accelerate Buybacks
Given the recent weakness in Microsoft’s stock, we have assumed the company will likely accelerate its pace of buyback from the September quarter of $6.6 billion to roughly $8 billion for the next several quarters, resulting in a net reduction in fully diluted shares outstanding of 300 million per quarter.
Cutbacks are necessary. We wrote about layoffs recently, so we append related links at the bottom of this post. But whereas the big news is continued discussion about Microsoft’s need to lay workers off, the bigger news, which is announced with confidence by a high-profile Web site, is that Microsoft will be axing far more than speculations first suggested.
The rumor that Microsoft was set to lay off people on January 15th, 2009 is no longer a rumor but a fact. Staff at Microsoft have been informed that the company is readying major layoffs to its worldwide operations and it’s not a small cut, either.
Currently Microsoft employs about 90,000 people across the world and from what we’re hearing, some 15,000 of those are expected to be giving marching orders come January 15th. That’s almost 17 percent of Microsoft’s total work force, not exactly a small number.
We prefer not to comment on layoffs, but expressed a point of view some days ago. █
- Quick Mention: Layoffs at Microsoft Begin
- Microsoft (MSFT) Sank to $18.74 Before Rebounding
- Microsoft Layoffs Actually Began Years Ago, More Likely to Come
- Eye on Microsoft: Feeling the Pinch Again
- Microsoft Chief Technical Officer Quits, Replacement Made for Another Quitting CEO, Operations Head Bumped
- Quick Mention: More Layoffs at Microsoft
- Microsoft Layoffs Worse Than Initially Reported
- Microsoft Under the Scalpel
- Rumours: More Microsoft Layoffs Next Month
- On Being Rich… On Paper
- We Live in Interesting Times
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Winter cleaning: sweeping aside the truth
THE ILLEGAL BEHAVIOR of Microsoft is a subject that we covered extensively when we showed what it had done to earn ISO’s approval. As a quick reminder, Microsoft threw people out of their jobs, bullied them, replaced them, bribed quite a few ballot-stuffers, blackmailed nations and possibly bribed charities, according to evidence we had gathered.
On the face of it, says Leif Lodahl, a new report commissioned by his government totally ignores all of this.
Helge Sander, Danish Minister of Science and Technology earlier this year asked an expert committee to look into the technical and legal implications of the introduction of two standards for documents in the government. The report is now ready.
In addition, the ISO approval of OOXML is considered as the final conclusion that the OOXML is an open and appropriate standard. This despite the fact that even Dansih Standards recognizes that the approval process was perhaps not completely clean and OOXML might not be quite as qualified as it seems.
The experts completely ignores the world around us. I believe that we in Denmark can’t take such decisions without first looking around us. The countries which we usually compare ourselves with, may have been through similar problems. But the report is also completely ignoring this.
For information about what happened in Denmark, see:
Is Microsoft’s revisionism [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9] already paying off? █
“A stacked panel, on the other hand, is like a stacked deck: it is packed with people who, on the face of things, should be neutral, but who are in fact strong supporters of our technology. The key to stacking a panel is being able to choose the moderator. Most conference organizers allow the moderator to select die panel, so if you can pick the moderator, you win. Since you can’t expect representatives of our competitors to speak on your behalf, you have to get the moderator to agree to having only “independent ISVs” on the panel. No one from Microsoft or any other formal backer of the competing technologies would be allowed -just ISVs who have to use this stuff in the “real world.” Sounds marvellously independent doesn’t it? In feet, it allows us to stack the panel with ISVs that back our cause. Thus, the “independent” panel ends up telling the audience that our technology beats the others hands down. Get the press to cover this panel, and you’ve got a major win on your hands.”
–Microsoft, secret training material
“37 letters with exactly the same words. Some of the senders didn’t even care to remove the ‘Type company name here’ text.
Simular letters has been circulating in Denmark as an e-mail from the Danish MD Jørgen Bardenfleth to customers and business partners.
I call it fraud, cheating and disgusting. If I wasn’t anti-Microsoft before, I am now. Disgusting !”
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AS READERS MIGHT remember, the Yankee Group constantly slammed Microsoft’s competition in virtualisation [1, 2] and was at one point pressured to remove false
advertising analysis it produced, which nonetheless remained on Microsoft's own Web site. To those who are not familiar with the Yankee Group, the words from their founder ought to speak volumes. Last year, in an article he published, this man stated: “Open source is not a movement; it’s a religion. It is a set of principles and practices that let everyone share non-existent or semi-existent intellectual property. Remember the Communist Manifesto: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” It is this generation’s Woodstock.”
“This group has a long history of slamming Free software, often at the behest (with funding) of Microsoft.”This group has a long history of slamming Free software, often at the behest (with funding) of Microsoft. One of its analysts, Laura DiDio, also played up — very repeatedly in fact — SCO’s lawsuit against Linux-using companies. She elevated the perceived risk, along with people like Rob Enderle, somewhat of an acquaintant of Steve Ballmer (he also slammed PJ and Groklaw) whose opinions are virtually up for negotiation with Microsoft. Daring Fireball, the highly-respected Web site of John Gruber, saw this almost exactly 5 years ago when he published the post “Rob Enderle: Putting the ‘Anal’ in ‘Analyst’.” Enderle attacked Linux once again yesterday (slamming Android without substance), but we won’t link to it. The comments already slam the authorship and the message.
Getting back to Yankee, knowing all that we know about the Yankee Group’s agenda in virtualisation and its approach towards Free software (namely bad attitude), why oh why does Dana Blankenhorn accept and publish the stuff they sent to him for consideration in a “Linux an Open Source” blog? He should be more careful.
The Yankee Group sent over an e-mail recently predicting this will take the form of desktop virtualization.
Like several other groups that lend their pen (or mouth-for-rent) to companies, they really need to be ignored. Meanwhile, The Gartner Group, whose opinions are up for sale, is quoted extensively in this new article about Citrix and virtualisation. Citrix in virtualisation acts a Microsoft Windows enabler.
What is going on and why is the press so easily blinded by folks who are merely salespeople in suits? █
“Analysts sell out – that’s their business model… But they are very concerned that they never look like they are selling out, so that makes them very prickly to work with.”
–Microsoft, internal document
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Keeping developers helpless and divided
SEVERAL Web sites accentuate issues of disagreement which are related to OpenOffice.org. Here is just one new example. They are using old news [1, 2, 3] and sometimes promote Novell’s fork the software [1, 2, 3, 4].
“It’s the same with GNOME and KDE; mutual damage helps nobody but the outsider, in this case Microsoft.”Infighting that’s led by Microsoft is an issue that we covered before, using examples. Those who look at Microsoft's "TE" material will find that causing ‘civil wars’ is one of their key strategies (finding sources of friction, then stirring things up), so by funding Novell and enabling/having them fork and insult OpenOffice.org they distract their competitors, who will fight among themselves rather than against Microsoft Office. It’s the same with GNOME and KDE; mutual damage helps nobody but the outsider, in this case Microsoft.
So where is it all coming from? Well, it mostly comes from Novell and it successfully penetrates and deceives some reporters, who fail to see the full picture:
And about this “we, the media” thing you brought up: Meeks has a conflict of interest that you don’t do a particularly good job of pointing out. If he works for Novell and Novell is in bed with MSFT, why should we simply take him at his word without questioning whether he has any vested interest one way or the other as to the corporate “sponsor(s)” of OpenOffice? Does this relationship have anything to do at all with Sun’s “difficulty”? As a managing editor of a news outlet, this is something I’d take my team to task for failing point out in reporting. By “we, the media” you’d better mean you and the mouse in your hand.
It would be interesting if Novell tried to seize control of other Free software in the future. CUPS, for example, belongs to Apple now, but that’s a wholly separate story. █
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- Ease into Linux from windows.
- Pay As You Go Computing? Linux is “Free As You Go!”
- REVOLUTION OS: A REVIEW
- Great Linux Innovations Of 2008
Last year we had looked at The Greatest Linux Innovations Of 2007, and as this year ends, we have compiled a similar list of what we believe were some of the greatest Linux innovations or achievements of 2008. Among the innovations named this year were KDE 4, NetworkManager 0.7, new hardware companies standing behind open-source support, and the Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix.
- Researchers devise undetectable phishing attack
- Lugaru shows why game devs should support OS X and Linux
- The November Cornucopia: One Month In Linux Audio
This week I’m your straight reporter bringing you news of of updates, upgrades, and new releases in the world of Linux audio software. Development in this world is continuously productive, so I’ll present only a selection of the Linux sound and music applications and utilities announced in the month of November in the year 2008.
- Linux Confiscation At School.
What concerns me here is that schools tend to be teaching kids that using computers is about learning to use microsoft products such as word, powerpoint etc, all very well, but how about introducing elements of computer science into the classroom and not just leaving it as an option for further education. Anyhow, the event is fully talked about in the the tech guy podcast.
- Openmoko FreeRunner Android in Blurry Spy-Shot Shocker
- Odds and ends
My forecast: netbooks are going to get even hotter in 2009 as buyers turn to affordable PCs with decent performance during an economic downturn. An alliance to watch: Acer and Canonical. As good as its netbooks are, Acer could benefit from Ubuntu, one of the most popular and user-friendly Linux distributions. Canonical, Ubuntu’s sponsor, stands to gain from a sharp rise in its installed base that a bundling deal with Acer would bring. What are these two waiting for?
- EMTEC bringing 10-inch Gdium netbook to America for $400
The Linux-based machine will come loaded with loads of open source software as well as a G-Key, which is described as “a bootable USB key on which the Linux operating system, applications, and personal data are stored.” Expect it to ship in white, black and pink sometime between January and the end of time for $400.
- £185.76 Dell Inspiron Mini 9 N270 Ubuntu Netbook
- Time for a Tablet
- Bare Minimum
Digital Tipping Point: Clip of the Day
Digital Tipping Point: Marcelo Marques, visionary security networks entrepreneur 03 (2004)
Digital Tipping Point is a Free software-like project where the raw videos are code. You can assist by participating.
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From the commit digest that has just been published:
Arno Rehn committed changes in /trunk/KDE/kdebindings/csharp:
* Add support for compiling sources at runtime.
Supported languages for now: C#, Boo, Nemerle, VB.NET (this one doesn’t quite work yet – the compiler seems to be buggy).
The first non-blank line in the mainscript file needs to be a comment in the form
// language:csharp references:System.Xml sources:otherfile.cs
‘meta-comments’ for different languages look equivalent.
By default references for qt-dotnet, kde-dotnet and plasma-dll are added.
The default language is C#, the default source file is only ‘main’.
So if a script is written in C#, only needs qt, kde and plasma bindings and all the code is contained in ‘main’, this comment can be omitted.
For each source file a md5 hash is created so it’s only recompiled if the source was modified.
Related posts (chronological):
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