One lesson: "I guess it doesn't pay to compete with Intel in x86 processors," he chuckled.
I almost chuckled too but not because you can't compete with Intel, because one thing we don't tend to hear from the tech companies who take off is that timing has a lot to do with their success. Had VMWare tried to launch 5 years earlier the road would have been much harder. Hardware wasn't there to do the consolidation the way enterprises wanted to handle virtualization. We had been fiddling with virtual machines running in emulators long enough that when VMWare started to hit its stride people were already familiar with virtualization but hadn't started building out their entire data center in a virtualized space. We've seen a lot of products fizzle because they had a great idea but the market wasn't ready for them. Good leadership can adjust markets and that's a large part of why I think VMWare took off, they jumped into the right market space at the right time and did a lot of driving when it came to defining what a virtualized datacenter looks like.