Microsoft officials did not seem overly concerned about the competitive threat raised by the StarOffice office applications suite.
“We keep an eye on competitors, but we think our ability to integrate and provide customized solutions that [feature] all the incredible rich functionality of Office gives us a significant advantage,” LeVasseur said. The company has no plans to port Office to the Linux platform, officials said.
Also this week:
* Microsoft is pondering development of a prescribed method for customers to integrate their Outlook packages with CRM systems, according to company representatives.
* Microsoft will provide integration between the upcoming Visual Studio 2005 Team System package due for release this year and the Microsoft Project application for project management. Visual Studio 2005 Team System users can make use of portfolio management and scheduling functions in Project, which will not be bundled with the Visual Studio Team System package itself but be a separate purchase, said Giovanni Mezgec, group product manager for the Microsoft Information Worker Business Group.
* Visual Studio 2005 Team System is also being integrated with the SharePoint package to enable team collaboration, for users accustomed to SharePoint, Teper said.
* The company is focusing more on connecting systems than on specifically marketing the SOA (service-oriented architecture) concept like other vendors, said LeVasseur. “We like to talk about connected systems, and SOA is how you deliver on connected systems, but the thing that enterprises care about is really … connecting their enterprises and their servers, more so than architectural concepts,” LeVasseur said. He added he did not want to speak on behalf of the company’s architecture group, which is involved in architecture-related endeavors.
* On Friday at the conference, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates will demonstrate Visual Studio Tools 2005 for the Microsoft Office System.