Welcome To The New Microsoft - InformationWeek
Mobile // Mobile Applications
11:10 PM
Dave Methvin
Dave Methvin
Building Security for the IoT
Nov 09, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the most effective approaches to securing Internet-enabled system ...Read More>>

Welcome To The New Microsoft

This has been a week full of surprises from Microsoft. They're doing things that the company historically has never done. What the heck is going on up in Redmond?

This has been a week full of surprises from Microsoft. They're doing things that the company historically has never done. What the heck is going on up in Redmond?The biggest story by far was that Microsoft is abandoning its own Windows Live Spaces blogging platform and moving users to WordPress. This isn't some sort of it-will-happen-eventually, it's effective immediately. According to Microsoft, existing Windows Live Spaces (WLS) bloggers will be able to move their existing entries to WordPress as well.

Now there aren't a lot of people who would say WLS is a powerhouse blogging platform, although Microsoft says there are 30 million active bloggers on it today. Users will no doubt be better served by being on a mainstream platform like WordPress. Yet that has never been a reason for Microsoft to avoid plugging away at their own software. Yet here they are, deciding that it's time to give up on something. Plus, they've gone through the trouble of figuring out a smooth transition that results in minimal disruption to their users. In a world where startups regularly enter the deadpool and leave their users in the lurch, that alone is a pleasant difference.

Another pleasant difference showed with the announcement of an update to Windows Live Office. When it came out, I wasn't sure whether Microsoft was truly committed to WLO, or was simplify "webifying" Office to reduce the flight to Google Docs. This new update came out only three months after the original release, and took off several rough edges from the original release. It's still more of an accessory to desktop Office than a replacement for it, but I like the direction it's taking.

Microsoft hosts plenty of blogs and forums on its own sites for employees to discuss their products, such as Internet Explorer. Yet this week also saw the IE team travel to Reddit to answer questions. That was something I hadn't seen before, although the results were mixed. I still think the answers were a bit too Microsoft-scripted and could have been more direct. If Microsoft wants to be successful and seem sincere in this outreach to social sites, they'll need to leave the marketing and legal teams behind.

If this week is indicative of what we can expect from the "new Microsoft" then maybe it's not going to be so easy to forecast what the company might do. These may be small examples, but it shows that it's possible for the company to change; even that seemed unlikely a couple of years ago.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll