Feeds

New Microsoft Longhorn chief is indigestion expert

Star hire has stomach for the job

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

Microsoft has a new star hire to head up its Longhorn project, Mike Sievert. And he brings a deeper and richer personal experience to the job than many of his marketing counterparts in the technology industry.

Sievert took up the post of Corporate VP for Windows Product Management, to give him his full title, at the start of the month. He joins from AT&T Wireless, which has just been acquired by Cingular, and before that he was at E-Trade. Nothing unusual there, you might think. But once upon a time, Sievert held one of the most important marketing posts in the nation: he was brand manager for the United States' favorite indigestion remedy, Pepto-Bismol®.

As the nation slept off its All-You-Can-Eat steak and lobster buffets, and 14 oz steaks, Sievert was the man responsible for making sure salvation was never more than a lurching trip to the bathroom away. By placing a bottle of Pepto-Bismol® at the heart of the American home, he single handedly saved many a celebration from turning into a drive-by projectile vomiting incident.

Strangely, Microsoft doesn't see fit to mention his achievements in Mike's official corporate biography. There, the copywriters refer only to "management positions in the Health Care Division of the Procter & Gamble Company." Procter & Gamble is the manufacturer of the runny pink saviour.

Perhaps they want to shield the competitive advantage that Sievert brings to Redmond a secret from the competition. We don't blame them. For Microsoft sure has an indigestion problem with its own software development processes, where infighting and indecision rule the day. Originally slated for a 2003 launch, ship dates slipped. Bill Gates' boast that Longhorn would take as much manpower as putting a man on the moon began to cut little ice with licensees when it became clear that neither manpower - nor even blogpower - was helping Microsoft get code out of the door.

Word of Longhorn delays became so frequent that even the conservative Gartner Group suggested that it might be 2008 until the death march bore fruit. In response, Microsoft scrambled to promise that it really, really would ship something in 2006. But the only way it has been able to meet this very public promise is the emetic route: hurling features such as Avalon and WinFS, and the 'managed code' overboard.

He doesn't have much experience of actually shipping software, but we think the industry's Duke of Dyspepsia is up to the stomach-churning task. If you can't be at the heart of the American Dream, the next best thing is to be close to the digestive tract - and we wish Mike the very best. ®

Related link

"Create your own 5-in-1 Pepto-Bismol® Dance!" - the Pepto-Bismol® Dance Machine

Related delays

Avalon, WinFS decoupled for Windows Shorthorn
(Almost) everything may go, as Longhorn rushes to release
MS Trusted Computing back to drawing board
No Windows XP SE as Longhorn jettisons features
MS delays Yukon
Windows Shorthorn is dead-on-arrival
Even Microsoft can't wait for Longhorn
MS moves into get Longhorn on the road mode
Longhorn to erase Cairo mis-step with 1995 ship date
Windows Longhorn build leak starts hype two years early
Longhorn RTM what it means to you
Microsoft delays Longhorn. Again
Only kidding? MS may ship Longhorn server after all
Gates confirms Windows Longhorn for 2003, Blackcomb MIA?

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
Put down that Oracle database patch: It could cost $23,000 per CPU
On-by-default INMEMORY tech a boon for developers ... as long as they can afford it
Google shows off new Chrome OS look
Athena springs full-grown from Chromium project's head
Apple: We'll unleash OS X Yosemite beta on the MASSES on 24 July
Starting today, regular fanbois will be guinea pigs, it tells Reg
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.