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11.06.09

Vice President of MSN AdCenter Rumoured Out, Microsoft Labour Moves Abroad, Microsoft Grasping Onto “Open Source”

Posted in Europe, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Servers at 8:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Considerable trouble inside Microsoft and a shift towards less expensive workforce is also accompanied by attempts to pollute the #1 competitor, Free software

MICROSOFT’S latest demoralising announcement (additional layoffs) has been covered quite widely and Boycott Novell was probably first to report it, thanks to comments from Mini-Microsoft’s blog (a reader alerted us about an insider leaking the date). After this latest round of layoffs one can find many more links in Mini-Microsoft’s blog, but more important are the many comments there, including a majority from employees. They love exposing their bosses and someone has suggested that Alex from MSN AdCenter is out. Another person says that “Alex is being “promoted” to become CTO of Microsoft’s Online Services Division.” Would this type of shuffle indicate that Microsoft’s Online Services Division lost or fired the former CTO? This does not bode well for Microsoft’s online ambitions. Other commenters indicate that Microsoft Learning suffers from the layoffs and that O'Reilly has something to do with it.

One commenter writes: “Joe Austin said it well as he was leaving to Juniper, the end is near as he pointed at the stars…”

Juniper is getting filled with former Microsoft employees [1, 2, 3, 4], including the company's current CEO.

“[Microsoft's] Joe Austin said it well as he was leaving to Juniper, the end is near as he pointed at the stars…”
      –Anonymous Microsoft employee (unverified)
Another interesting item that we found is this one which indicates that Microsoft lays off its British workforce at twice the pace as that of the world combined. We wrote about this before as it becomes rather clear that Microsoft prioritises workers where labour is cheaper.

Meanwhile we find that Microsoft is trying to catch up with the winning team, Free software. Likewise, which is partly run by former Microsoft folks like its VP of engineering, is trying to override Samba, implicitly marketing itself as better Samba than Samba. That’s some classic “embrace and extend”.

Several posts ago we wrote about Microsoft's Apache payola. Readers have privately mailed us with feedback about this and it was discussed in IRC yesterday because it’s possible that some people in Apache detest the sponsorship. £60,000 is nothing to sneeze at; it can buy a lot of influence inside the ASF, which is not a company. In ApacheCon 2009 they bragged about the fact that they cannot be bought, but although this is technically correct (Mozilla can tell a similar story), the role of money must never be discounted.

One of the strengths of Free software can be found in the LAMP stack that includes Apache. Free/libre CMS software typically sits at the top (e.g. WordPress or Drupal, which even the White House has just chosen). Microsoft is now preparing to release a “me too” CMS, dressed up as “open source” while pushing the whole proprietary Microsoft stack as a substitute for LAMP. Mary Jo Foley has the details:

Free Microsoft open-source content management app to get its debut next week

[...]

Microsoft released an alpha version of the Oxite source code, under the open-source Microsoft Public License (MS-Pl) in December 2008. At that time, the Softies described Oxite as a platform “built to take full advantage of ASP.NET MVC but broken into assemblies so that even ASP.NET WebForm developers can use the data backend and utility code, supports use of Visual Studio Team Suite (DB Pro, Test, etc.), and Background Services Architecture (sending trackbacks, emails, etc. all done as a background process to prevent delays on the web site itself).”

We wrote about Oxite one year ago.

Beach scenes in Suffolk England
Don’t let Microsoft sink Open Source with it

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