Writing about Steve Ballmer and Steve Jobs always seems to get a rise out of my readers. Case in point: three letters I've received lately, two of which basically telling me I'm too stupid (and/or cheap) to live. Here are some choice excerpts.
In a recent column, I ragged on Steve Ballmer as the true cause of Microsoft's current ills. Cringester C. H. responded by offering a 12-step plan for Microsoft's comeback, most of which involves dramatically increasing its stake in Facebook. To wit:
Bring Zuckerberg in as the Chief Technology Architect. Make him an offer he can't refuse. Position FB as the next social network, web 3.0, "OS" powered by Windows. Announce Zuckerberg as CEO. Integrate Facebook with Office Live with Windows Phone with Xbox Live, Bing search, etc...
[ Want to cash in on your IT experiences? InfoWorld is looking for stories of an amazing or amusing IT adventure, lesson learned, or war tale from the trenches. Send your story to firstname.lastname@example.org. If we publish it, we'll keep you anonymous and send you a $50 American Express gift cheque. ]
I gotta say, if there's anyone who can match Ballmer for sheer perspiration, it's Zuckerberg. Not sure about the rest, though. He really doesn't look strong enough to hurl a chair. I think that's part of Ballmer's job description.
In "Microsoft is dead, long live GoogApple," I went on an extended rant about my hellish experience trying to get a Windows Vista machine to let me delete a backup folder and how that example epitomizes everything about what's wrong with Microsoft.
Reader D. T. takes me to task for, essentially, not buying my laptop though a VAR who could have given me the support I needed to help me through that nightmare. (Need I add that, judging by his email sig, he appears to own such an enterprise?) Here's just a snippet from a rather long email he sent me:
Mr. Cringely you need to take a long look at yourself, your purchasing habits and expectations..... There really is a “channel” and there are a lot of people involved in making your notebook work, or as you pointed out not-work. ...
Perhaps you should have established a personal relationship with a vendor that actually likes to deal with people using technology products. Perhaps you even know such a vendor you could personally visit face-to face. Of course, personal attention is worth something. Yes, people other than you need to pay their bills. Why else would all these people charge for service?