Feeds

Software vision ain't what it used to be at Microsoft

Not .NET

Boost IT visibility and business value

It was meant to usher in a new era for Microsoft. Bill Gates, along with recently appointed CTO Ray Ozzie and an entourage of lesser-known vice presidents pitched presentations and demos to press and analysts in San Francisco, California, to convince them Microsoft has a vision for "software as a service".

True to Microsoft style, the company will not be using the accepted industry name of "software as a service" but has coined its own moniker - "live software".

That's where the creative genius ran out, though. What was wheeled out was chiefly a response to Google's speeding revenue juggernaut. Live software wraps up much contemporary thinking but lacks the incisive vision found in .NET five years ago that attracted millions of developers and helped shape an industry.

Gates defined live software as software that remembers the users' preferences with services delivered to multiple devices - PCs, phones, cars or what ever. Those services are hosted and can be used in a federated, peer-to-peer network.

Live software is pure Web 2.0 pop culture. It's based on a well-established "service in the cloud" architecture that fuses - and confuses - things already in the market - from IM, social networking, downloadable music services and blogs to hosted email, business intelligence and customer relationship management (CRM) services.

The first implementations of live software are Windows Live and Office Live. Windows Live is a refreshed version of MSN with services like Hotmail updated to use Asynchronous Java Script and XML (AJAX) and feature an improved, almost Google-like, search and interface layer, and the ability to link to, and expose, profiles of buddies on your IM list as if you were using LinkedIn.

Office Live, for businesses with less than 10 staff, wraps-up hosting and design for web sites, and provides hosted email, collaboration, basic CRM and business intelligence. Integration across all of these is a feature. with small businesses, for example, able to export contacts in its CRM to an Exchange email list.

Ad a little here, ad a little there

Live software demonstrates less technical vision - a lot less than laid out for .NET - and has more focus on new business models and ways for Microsoft to make money online. Gates and Ozzie on Tuesday intoned a fervent belief in ad- and subscription-based revenue for live software. The engine for that new business is adCenter, due next year and currently in testing in France and Singapore.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer
Melty but refreshing - popular rival to Mint's Cinnamon's still a work in progress
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over
Plenty on new CEO's todo list – starting with Firefox's slipping grasp
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
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
Cloudy CoreOS Linux distro declares itself production-ready
Lightweight, container-happy Linux gets first Stable release
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.