Feeds

Microsoft's Mountain man sees Jobsian past in .NET

Like NeXTSTEP. But 'open'

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Outsider in

Why? The rise of open systems and web services that didn't exist ten years ago and that let companies connect. Microsoft helped in this, through its work on XML and AJAX. Also, social computing was an idea that's been brewing for some time and is now being driven by Facebook.

Of course, not even XML or web services can help if the fundamental business idea behind a startup is flawed. Lewin talks of one start-up he worked with during the dot-com era that he won't name, which wanted him to do what he laughingly calls "unnatural acts of business" with giveaways for growth. Funny, that sounds like the kind of thinking from just a few years back, with attempts to find ways of turning free and open-source code into gold.

The companies like eBay and Amazon that survived the dot.com era were built on what Lewin calls fundamental business tenets such as trading or logistics - things that already worked in the offline world. "Just because there's a browser available, doesn't make it a great business," he said.

There's a new ferocity in the Valley today, with a race underway to sign partners and developers to a new generation of platforms - the cloud and mobile. Some of the names have gone since the last race finished, while the winners from that competition are sticking around for a second try.

For Lewin, at least, Microsoft is working in a more interoperable world while - partly thanks to Lewin's 34-year history in the place - his employer's not quite the outsider it was nearly ten years back. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft
Doesn't much like Apple or Google, either
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Sin COS to tan Windows? Chinese operating system to debut in autumn – report
Development alliance working on desktop, mobe software
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
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.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?