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Posts Tagged ‘Steve Ballmer’

Steve Ballmer Gets a Little Excited About His New Basketball Team

A clip we somehow missed at EOD yesterday has helped us realize why Steve Ballmer may not have been the best fit for his former employer, Microsoft.

While Ballmer didn’t quite succeed in his ongoing attempt to make the tech dinosaur “cool”, he definitely convinced the folks in the crowd at yesterday’s L.A. Clippers press conference that he really likes basketball. Not that he ever played it, but you know…

We also think we’ve discovered the recently “retired” Ballmer’s true calling: a job as a WWE announcer.

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Microsoft Might Just Be Done with Former Clinton Flack

When we searched Mark Penn‘s name yesterday on Bing, using our Surface tablets (psych!) and saw this headline we wondered, “Why would anyone want to fire this guy? His track record is just as spotless as his ethical record!” Remember the Wall Street Journal column he used to promote Burson-Marsteller while he was acting CEO? Good times.

Oh, and remember this 2008 gem? Thanks, Mark Penn!

Now why might Microsoft, according to the story broken by Re/code, be thinking about letting the guy go?

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Is Microsoft ‘Cool’ Now, or Was This Just a Big Stunt?

A couple of weeks ago we poked fun at Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for his brilliant plan to make the tech dinosaur “cool”  despite the fact that price has been its main selling point for some time. Yet today marked the official release of the Surface tablet and the Windows 8 platform and, based on the public reaction, we feel like Ballmer may have succeeded in spite of himself.

OK, we love our Xbox, but when was the last time anyone got excited about a new Microsoft product?

Apparently that would be yesterday. Microsoft aimed to make a spectacle out of its new product rollout, and the crowds at its Times Square preview event were surprisingly dense.

The craziest thing about the scene was the fact that none of the people who waited in line for a Surface last night actually got one. They paid for the tablet, and then they were told that they could either return at midnight to pick it up or “have it delivered to their homes or hotel rooms by noon tomorrow.”

Wow. That’s iPhone-level insanity.

Has Microsoft really become a contender for techie supremacy again?

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Ballmer’s Brilliant Plan: Make Microsoft ‘Cool’

When you try to think of the most groundbreaking “devices and services” company in the world today, the first name that comes to mind is…Microsoft, right?

No? Well, CEO Steve Ballmer wants to change all that, and he’s got a brilliant, semi-secret plan to do it—by making the company “cool” again. See those air quotes? Oh yeah, we’re totally (not) feeling it.

Ballmer’s recent letter to shareholders promises to deliver more products like the Xbox (which is actually pretty cool) and the Surface (which is an iPad with a kickstand) as well as the brand new MS Office and Windows 8, opening on PC screens near you later this month. Ballmer also plans to focus more on omnipresent cloud services, which will be key to any electronics company looking to compete in the market of the future—or the present, come to think of it.

By referring to “a new era”, Ballmer all but concedes that his company has fallen behind a certain fruit-themed competitor—a theory reinforced by Kurt Eichenwald’s Vanity Fair article about Microsoft’s “lost decade” which notes that the iPhone currently “brings in more revenue than the entirety of Microsoft”. The article focuses on bureaucracy inhibiting innovation—and, you know, we haven’t heard about too many ground-breaking products emerging from Microsoft in recent years. Have you?

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Goodbye to Steve Jobs

The day after the iPhone 4S announcement, at about 5 p.m. Pacific time, the tech world suffered an immeasurable loss in the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. The 56-year-old died at home after a long fight with pancreatic cancer. Some reactions follow:

President Barack Obama: ”Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.” [via WhiteHouse.gov]

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg: “Steve, thank you for being a mentor and a friend. Thanks for showing that what you build can change the world. I will miss you.” [via Facebook]

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer: “I want to express my deepest condolences at the passing of Steve Jobs, one of the founders of our industry and a true visionary. My heart goes out to his family, everyone at Apple and everyone who has been touched by his work.” [via Microsoft.com]

Dell Targets IT Pros with October Event

 

From October 12 through 14, Dell World 2011 will host IT decisionmakers at an inaugural conference in Austin, TX aimed at this niche group. While some conferences, tech-specific or otherwise, tout their colossalness with attendance figures in the tens of thousands, this conference is purposely staying small.

“This is going to get specific,” said Russell Fujioka, VP of marketing for Dell’s public and large enterprise area. He told us today that the conference is intentionally capping attendance at about 1,200. “Anyone who can attend is going to see leaders in proximity that they’ve never seen before,” he added.

Laser-targeting this group for this event is one of the attractions.

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Tools Round Up: MyMediaInfo, Cision, ContentAide, and Skype

MyMediaInfo has added an international media database to its offerings. The database includes information about journalists and other media contacts in Europe, Asia, South America, Australia, and Africa.

The CisionPoint Spring Release is here, and it includes new news sources, redesigned news distribution services, and additional choices to further personalize information.

Our San Francisco contributor Celeste Altus can breathe easy today. Facebook isn’t buying Skype, but Microsoft is. The $8.5 billion deal was announced this morning and should be finalized by the end of the year. In an email published on ZDNet, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer writes:

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