‘Microsoft’s Creative Destruction’

Former Microsoft vice president Dick Brass, on Microsoft’s internal culture:

Another example: When we were building the tablet PC in 2001, the vice president in charge of Office at the time decided he didn’t like the concept. The tablet required a stylus, and he much preferred keyboards to pens and thought our efforts doomed. To guarantee they were, he refused to modify the popular Office applications to work properly with the tablet. So if you wanted to enter a number into a spreadsheet or correct a word in an e-mail message, you had to write it in a special pop-up box, which then transferred the information to Office. Annoying, clumsy and slow.

Can you imagine the head of Apple’s iWork team declaring by fiat that there wouldn’t be versions of Keynote, Pages, and Numbers for the iPad because he didn’t like the concept?

Thursday, 4 February 2010