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Microsoft is Dead

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While I can't be certain, I fear this will cause universal mourning. Better start distributing the SSRIs. :)

A few days ago I suddenly realized Microsoft was dead. I was talking to a young startup founder about how Google was different from Yahoo. I said that Yahoo had been warped from the start by their fear of Microsoft. That was why they'd positioned themselves as a "media company" instead of a technology company. Then I looked at his face and realized he didn't understand...

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amusing nonsense. even vista won't kill microsoft.

Well if you believe net apps are going to have a bigger share of what a gazillion people spend their time on, indirectly money!, I dont think it is nonsense. Google vs. LIVE spell it out big time. Google is also moving into MS area by offering to domain/business solutions. You can see where they are heading. Building up reputation by offering whatever for free (minus the advertising) and then move on to new and perhaps more profitable battle fields. Gmail not just for fun any more ;)

Owning desktop, office, business market might make this redundant though. Where does most money come from and is MS weak in those areas? I think you have to know most likely secret numbers from MS accounting to understand their moves and priorities.

I agree with nudone - there's a big difference between 'dead' and simply no longer being an all-controlling monopoly.  Microsoft can still be a successful company even when it's on a more competitive footing with other companies (which is what Graham's article seems to equate with being 'dead').

Even Graham must know this; he talks about MS inheriting its monopoly from IBM, and IBM is hardly dead.  Calling MS dead is simply sensationalism.

Oh, and I'd probably be leery of investing in a start-up whose principals seem completely unaware of Microsoft's potential for disrupting any market related to personal computing - even if it's 'Web 2.0'.  I'm not saying that they should be scared necessarily, but they should at least be aware.  I'm pretty sure that Google doesn't completely discount Microsoft, even if MS doesn't scare them.

Interesting reply article at

The first thing to understand is who Paul Graham is. He’s a venture capitalist. He invests in tech start-ups. Yes he has a tech/programming background, but today he’s basically about investing in small tech start-ups with the idea that one of them will grow huge and make him a big pile of money to add to the big pile of money that he’s already got. Nothing wrong with that - although you do have to realize that it colors his arguments throughout.
...the real reason that Paul Graham thinks that Microsoft is "dead" is simply because the kind of start-ups that he is involved with, are no longer trying to compete with, nor displace, Microsoft. In other words, he’s saying that his start-ups aren’t going to try to take a chunk out of Microsoft’s $44.2 billion (and growing) annual revenue. Or to put in other words, competing with Microsoft as a business-plan, at least as far as Paul Graham is concerned, is what is really dead.
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