EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

09.25.11

Windows Phone 7 Will Die With Silverlight

Posted in Microsoft, Vista, Windows at 11:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Danger sign for Microsoft

Summary: How Silverlight died and why it is highly probable that Microsoft will always fail in the mobile arena

OVER a year ago we explained the connection between Vista Phony 7 (WP7) and Silverlight. That was just before Silverlight died. What’s amazing is that a lot of people forget that the fall of Silverlight is a prelude to the fall of WP7. One loosely depends on the other.

Windows Mobile was a massive failure that cost Microsoft a lot of money before Sidekick and KIN injured Microsoft as well (Microsoft tried to hide those losses). Just like in search, Microsoft keeps swapping brands, always with the same outcome and the same amazing losses.

According to this, Microsoft may have started a disinformation campaign for WP7. To quote Christine: “I can’t swear this item is Microsoft FUD, but it sure smells that way. On Wednesday a writer on CNET’s Microsoft beat reported on a study released by NPD Group. Although the article is never quite clear on exactly what is being studied (unless I missed something – tell me), the point seems to be that lots of potential buyers just can’t wait to get their hands on Windows Phone 7. Again, I could be wrong, but this sounds like the beginning of some sort of Redmond financed campaign to me.”

Since it is based on XAML to an extent, its fate is closely related to that of Silverlight, whose own people say was “destined to fail”. Quoting the new blog post:

Why Silverlight was destined to fail and my time as one of its custodians.

[...]

Death of Silverlight is sad, but at the same time good. Yes I said it, as for years I’ve sat behind this product watching it grow in an amazing ways across the globe. It went from this science project existence that I remember saying it wouldn’t last through tot his highly competitive technology that had both Microsoft and Adobe at each other’s throats over.

The war between Adobe ended though and over time the technology become somewhat a questionable approach to solving a whole bunch of issues within the .NET community.

So how did we arrive at this point? Here’s my mini memoirs of my time at Microsoft and in the Silverlight Product Management / Evangelism space.

It’s a long read, but take some time to stick process it all. I’ve left out a whole heap of juicy crap, simply because it would turn into a novel!!! And you wouldn’t believe me if I wrote it anyway.

The failure of Silverlight will cascade down to other Microsoft products. Vista was supposed to make a lot out of XAML and it failed.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

4 Comments

  1. NotZed said,

    September 26, 2011 at 1:42 am

    Gravatar

    Well, that was a long read. Could use some proof-reading too.

    Although everything he says leads to the conclusion: the technology just isn’t that great either. It really isn’t.

    But I felt most sorry for his wife having to put up with a move to the USA. The food there really does suck, and then there’s the weather and the ugly, loud, and fat loud people, and all the rest.

    twitter Reply:

    Oh wow. Thanks for goading me into reading the TE’s amazing description of death of Silverlight, chaos at Microsoft and a well reasoned prediction of Windows 8 failure. Without your goading, I was content to take Roy’s summary. The story is incredibly damaging, very much worth reading and making a brief summary. I knew people at Microsoft were belligerent idiots but this is amazing commentary on how they select and promote the most rabid fans to mismanage and deceptively push third rate software.

    The Birth of Silverlight:

    let’s get DRUNK!!! … Here I was one afternoon, jet lagged to the max half asleep and trying as desperately as I could to pay attention to WPF talks … I remember bullshitting my answer to something like “yeah nah its sounds all interesting” trying as best I can to maintain a bluff that I was in the know… I then thought, I better get ahead of this product as if there was one chance in hell I can survive in Microsoft it was with a Flash like solution called WPF Everywhere. … I remember sitting in my chair thinking “Microsoft are on crack if they think they can take Flash on with this? I mean what the hell is this? Flash 1.0?”

    Can it get any more toxic? Here we have typical Microsoft behavior and why they do it:

    I’d be constantly in blog / comment skirmishes with Adobe staffers … We’d block each other’s brands from conferences and I’d constantly nip at their every move online to the point where the rage would eventually catch them out.
    I’d find myself on Messenger with an Adobe staffer flaming each other and as they did they’d always give hints or let stuff go on what they were doing. I soon found that baiting them into a fight, often gave me insight into what their moves where and so I’d always get enough information to predict what they’d likely do next. … that’s part of the reason we always managed to stay one step ahead of them when it came to announcements – it’s like we always had a better story at every turn.

    The flip side of this constant harassment of his former Adobe peers is a revolting hero worship and adulation of his new Microsoft drinking buddies.

    Ian-Ellison Taylor, the guy behind a lot of cool ideas in Windows … Dave Mendlen, the GM of the entire group. He was Steve Ballmers former speech writer and was a legend within the company. … walked out to find Brian Goldfarb in the hallway smiling and saying something like “dude, this is so going to be awesome!” … If you thought my ego was big as an Evangelist for Microsoft, you hadn’t seen anything yet. I was about to work with Brad Becker, David Pugmire and Pete Faraday.

    There’s lots more where that came from. So how does an intoxicated, hyper competitive sycophant get the job? With more of the same.

    Time to move into Product Management or get fired. … I went through my interview loop and meet some guys I mostly went out to drinks with, I remember thinking that if this was an interview then Microsoft really need to keep a better abstraction layer in place.

    What kind of sacrifices was he willing to make to be with his heroes?

    My wife had never set foot in the US in her entire life, and here I was dragging her away from a promising career at Ernst & Young to work for $20k USD less than we were earning in Australia (Not including her wage either). … Microsoft fought us on temporary housing, as I said in my contract I wanted 3months housing paid but they only did 2months (not to mention the GPS for the car wasn’t included). I won the fight but yeah, I remember thinking this company is worth billions and we’re haggling over the rental of a GPS? Seriously?

    He then tells us how he and his TE buddies planned, or did’nt plan the development of Silverlight.

    we had no strategy or none that I saw throughout the entire time I was there. It was just a serious of tactical thoughts and mostly large customer or competitive reactions that got the ticket into the release schedules. … in order to sneak a feature onto the list, you have to go black ops. You have to sit with guys like Mike … he quickly showed me his upcoming blog post that he was writing. He wanted to get my thoughts on how it will make Adobe react … its all punch after punch now and these guys aren’t going to see you coming

    Having created something, they used the Olympics to push it on US households.

    the Bejing Olympics. This was a huge win for Silverlight we not only got to show our upcoming video muscles but we also stood a chance of getting our ubiquity numbers up … it had a lot of upgrade issues / matrix of issues to be exact … we had smooth streaming in play for the first time and I remember thinking how awesome it was to watch Australia in the Olympics thanks to Silverlight. As I’m in the US right? So all the TV networks only showed US events not Australian swimming etc – but via Silverlight I got to see it! So I was definitely drinking the kool-aid. … we managed to push Silverlight into over 200-300million homes

    and it sucked and the world hated it and he had no clue.

    I flew in and spend the entire [vacation back home] month talking about Silverlight and Expression Blend 3 and how awesome it was. I had developer after developer walk up to me and just brutally beat the crap out of me verbally for things we as a team weren’t doing right and lastly why and how the release schedule was to aggressive. … I also got slammed on design questions, mainly around how we sucked at engaging designers and lastly how Blend was a horrible product … The things they were asking weren’t radical either, they were the basics and we as teams were so far removed from reality I thought – that it was almost comical

    and nothing was done to fix the problems because they were completely disorganized and depending on their usual strategy of ramming things down people’s throats

    we needed to throw out our ideas around “Business Decision Makers” being the ones who decide to Adopt Silverlight and instead focus on the cubicle developer who makes the decision on behalf of companies (for me I hated the BDM theory

    I was with the teams politics, that we spend more time talking about greatness and less time working on it. That we often are so caught up in our dumbass ivory tower theories that nothing is getting done … Brad kept us all mostly in the dark, because in the end that’s how he managed to get stuff done. As the moment he confided in anyone the ideas would either get stolen or shut down

    he was moved to a different competing team working on the same project and describes them

    I spent the next few weeks writing meeting notes, listening to these clowns grapple onto the notion of how a website is built. I remember thinking “oh my god, not only do they not know anything about websites they don’t even have a strategy at the moment”

    then, a tragedy

    the Azure marketing team had got an agency to do a campaign site, but the agency put the site on Php and Linux server. Brian needed me to fix this and put it over into .NET urgently as it was a favor for a colleague of his. … Three weeks later, Brian calls me into his office and hands me an envelope. I admit, I thought I was being fired as I’m thinking “holy crap, he finally caught me slacking off”.
    It wasn’t my termination papers, it was a $7k USD check with equal share options. I just got handed a Microsoft Gold Star award for my bravery in the line of PHP to ASP fire. … I know of three other guys who worked their asses off daily … who did 10x the work I did, and nothing. Not even a thank you – in fact they got punished for not being team players!

    After more fights and nonsense, he resigned.

    I was wasting my time with Silverlight. I mean, this product had no future and it was clear that this product wasn’t going to have one until someone sat down and thought this product through for more than a fiscal year.
    My wife and I were struggling to keep our marriage intact so it was a case of stick it out with a shitty boss, no strategy for a product I cared for and lose my wife/kids or just go home and start over fresh.

    and he became another form of Microsoft parasite, fixing things that should not be broken in the first place:

    It was like stealing candy from a baby, all I had to do was fix broken Silverlight/WPF projects and it was easy.
    I was now making profit on the stupidity of Microsoft’s inability to teach the masses how they should build projects with their technology. It was a weird thing to experience as not only was I seeing this from enterprise customers of Microsoft, but I was often called in by Microsoft to also help the fix screw-ups they were making internally for both products they were working on or customers they were working for

    He leaks the news that Silverlight is to be replaced with html5 and predicts Windows 8 will flunk the way Silverlight did and for the same reasons.

    Windows 8 launch. … doomed to fail and will eventually just like I knew #WP7 would fail first few rounds with consumers. Reason being? No strategy. There is no strategy here folks, just like Silverlight it’s all tactical reaction

    For the record, NotZed, people in Tacoma/Seattle are not at all like the raging idiots Microsoft imports from around the world. They are not fat and loud, they have some very nice food and are in excellent health. If I had not been curious about the wife’s experiences, I’d have never read that piece. Thanks.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Thanks for these fair use summaries. I must only comment to add that one SilverLie TE was personally harassing me at the time. Jonathan Wong. Microsoft needs to rethink its bullying tactics. It’s no way to sell products. This is another reason why people dislike Microsoft.

    twitter Reply:

    My pleasure, thanks for finding the document. It is a very interesting and personal look at how Microsoft operates. We’ve seen the general, high level planning about control of video formats in Comes documents. We have also seen the TE training manual and their persistent, viscous heckling is impossible to miss. This man’s half remorseful rant stands both as a confession and documentation that Microsoft’s development process is all driven by marketing toward “decision makers” who are expected to run over actual practitioners.

What Else is New


  1. US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) Keeps Introducing Changes to Patent Law and Patent Policy Under the Trump Administration Still Looks OK

    Judging by what we are seeing so far this year, the US patent system won't be going back into the sordid mess it once was, thanks in part to the Justices of the US Supreme Court and the America Invents Act, signed into law over half a decade ago



  2. Leaked: Team Battistelli, Exploiting a Controversial Decision From the Netherlands, is Trying to Squash SUEPO

    The latest leak suggests that Battistelli not only celebrates immunity from the law but also uses that to take further steps against the Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO)



  3. Dr. Ingve Björn Stjerna: UPC's “Entry Into Force is Not at all Secured,” Contrary to What Team UPC Says

    The ludicrous notion that the UPC is inevitable and just a matter of time is challenged by longtime UPC observers, including Dr. Ingve Björn Stjerna, who wrote an entire book on the subject



  4. Media Blasts EPO Over Immunity Amid Suicides, Battistelli's Behaviour Compared to Dominique Strauss-Kahn's

    Backlash in the Netherlands is growing again, primarily as a result of media reports about the EPO's abuses against basic rights and the government's reluctance to put an end to these abuses



  5. Hilarious: Battistelli Goes to Former French Colony With No Patents to 'Buy' the EPO a Perception of Legitimacy

    Having toured various banana republics in pursuit of easy-to-sign deals, Battistelli now goes to Cambodia again, in order to make it seem as though the EPO is conquering Asia



  6. Patent Trolls Like Finjan Holdings and Thomas Edison; the Latest Loss for Software Patents in the US and Their Move to China

    A look at the very latest patent news, which suggests further improvements in the US, pushback from the patent microcosm, and an outsourcing of a terrible system to Chinese territories, where the overpatenting plague grows rapidly



  7. Still Waiting for Official Confirmation That Michelle Lee Will Head the Patent Office Under Donald Trump's Administration

    As of today, there is still no official word on whether or not Lee continues her tenure, which saw the demise of patents on software and along with that the demise of patent trolls and frivolous litigation



  8. Links 23/1/2017: Wine Releases, Microsoft Layoffs

    Links for the day



  9. 'Reform' at the EPO Means Destroying the Staff Union, Crushing Patent Examiners, and Imposing on Europe a System It Does Not Want (UPC)

    The chaotic transition at the EPO -- a transition from something which has been workable to something intolerable -- and the role of the Unitary Patent (UPC), which lurks in the shadows and threatens to harm the whole of Europe



  10. Shakeup Against Patent Parasites in the US and More Rumours/Speculations About USPTO Director Michelle Lee After Trump's Inauguration

    The US patent system is becoming ever more hostile towards patent trolls, owing in part to reforms introduced under Michelle Lee's tenure, but people are still not certain that she will maintain her job and continue to fix the system



  11. EPO Abuses Now Make the Netherlands Look Like a Facilitator of Human/Labour Rights Abuses

    Rather than crack down on human rights abuses, the Dutch government now sends out the signal that it's an island for those wish to violate human rights whilst enjoying immunity (EPO)



  12. Links 20/1/2017: Docker 1.13, Linux 4.4.44 LTS

    Links for the day



  13. “Federal Circuit Had Affirmed on Every Issue in 77.4% of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board Appeals it Had Seen” in 2016

    The Federal Circuit (CAFC) and Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) continue to squash a lot of patents on software, in contrast to that fake news from patent maximalists



  14. Kudelski Group Not Only Acts Like a Patent Troll But Also Run by Intellectual Ventures Person; Mobile Market in Dire State of Patent Armageddon

    The patent thicket which pervades everything that is used by billions of people, mobile technology in particular, can be traced back to a lot of non-practicing parasites (or patent trolls)



  15. Watchtroll and His Swamp Still Blame Google (Where Michelle Lee Came From) for Improving and Gradually Fixing Aspects of the US Patent System

    Shooting the messengers (even wrongly associating yours truly with Google) in an effort to undermine patent reform when it is so desperately needed due to serious injustices



  16. In an Age of Necessary Patent Reform and Permanent Uncertainty for Software Patents the Patent Microcosm Looks for Workarounds and Spin

    Commentary on the status quo in the Michelle Lee era and some examples of bias from the patent microcosm, as well as news regarding the NFL getting sued by the Kudelski Group



  17. Michelle Lee, USPTO Director, Should Recognise That the Patent Microcosm is Her Enemy Which Hates Her

    The latest outburst from the patent microcosm, which has a temper issue and notorious disdain for judges it does not agree with, is more of what we have come to expect



  18. Battistelli is an Autocrat Above the Law and It's OK, Holland's High Council Says

    Battistelli's autocratic tendencies will not be challenged by Dutch authorities, in spite of sheer condemnation from many groups all across Europe and the entire world



  19. Beware Fake News About the Unitary Patent (UPC)

    The UPC is dead, deadlocked, stuck, in a limbo and so on; those who claim otherwise are merely lobbying (in disguise of "analysis" or "news")



  20. Shame on MapR for Pursuing Software Patents While Pretending to Stand for Free/Open Source Software

    The patents gold rush sees another company joining the 'fun', albeit this company should campaign hard against software patents rather than pursue any



  21. Doomsday Scenario in the Back Mirror as Michelle Lee Keeps Her Job (and Much-Needed Patent Reform) at the USPTO

    The future of patent reform, i.e. tackling overpatenting and patent trolls, looks somewhat more promising with today's confirmation of Lee's 'extended tenure' at the Office



  22. Links 19/1/2017: PulseAudio 10.0, Linux 4.9 Longterm Kernel

    Links for the day



  23. Corporate (Wall Street) Media Agrees That Brexit Dooms the Unitary Patent (UPC)

    The nonstop lies or the fake news about the UPC starting "real soon now" don't quite pass a reality check or a basic assessment based on fundamental concepts, such as the UPC's facilitation of subordination (to Europe) in the United Kingdom



  24. Farce of an 'Independence' for the Boards of Appeal as Another Ally of Benoît Battistelli Enters as Parasite Inside the 'Overseer'/Host

    The latest cluster of lies from the President of the European Patent Office (EPO) and direct refutation of false claims of independence for the Boards of Appeal, where the former Vice-Presidents can flock, just like the Mini Minion (Minnoye) of Battistelli



  25. Links 18/1/2017: Red Hat's OpenShift 3.4, Mozilla's New Logo/Branding

    Links for the day



  26. Union-Busting Action by Team Battistelli Takes Heavy Toll, Techrights Will Continue to Expose EPO Injustices to the World

    The Staff Union of the European Patent Office, SUEPO, which faced unprecedented and probably illegal (based on local laws) attacks, is being weakened by the worst President ever, whose own management team seems to be collapsing along with the institution he is destroying in just a few years



  27. A Lot More Fake News About the UPC, Trying to Convince People That the UK is Ratifying (It's Not, It Cannot)

    Response to some of the latest misleading (self-serving) whispers about the fate of the Unified Patent Court (UPC), which is in a deadlock due to Brexit



  28. Rumours Suggest That EPO Management is Aware of Decline in Patent Quality and is Thus Actively Lying About it to the Media/Public

    Whenever Battistelli brags about patent quality he may be consciously and deliberately lying through his teeth if the latest rumours are correct



  29. Links 17/1/2017: GIMP Plans, New Raspberry Pi Product

    Links for the day



  30. Resumption of EPO Propaganda ('Meet the President') Officially Starts Tomorrow

    Yet another one of these foolish 'Meet the President' stunts, scheduled to take place tomorrow morning


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts