Sunday, May 04, 2008

Wasted noodles or sour grapes?

Software blogger Joel Spolsky has plenty of unfailing fans and a few devoted critics as well. Sometimes I find myself disagreeing with him strongly, while at other times I'm nodding emphatically in agreement. I think I enjoy him most when he takes a Maverick tack, defends it well and I also happen to believe he's right.

His most recent piece, Architecture astronauts, leaves me mulling. He's skeptical of Microsoft's latest Live Mesh Project. He grouses on about Google and Microsoft sucking up and squandering too much programming talent, driving up starting salaries in the process.

"It was seven years ago today when everybody was getting excited about Microsoft's bombastic announcement of Hailstorm, promising that "Hailstorm makes the technology in your life work together on your behalf and under your control."

What was it, really? The idea that the future operating system was on the net, on Microsoft's cloud, and you would log onto everything with Windows Passport and all your stuff would be up there. It turns out: nobody needed this place for all their stuff. And nobody trusted Microsoft with all their stuff. And Hailstorm went away."



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