And the new head is a PM..heading windows engineering.
More on Julie from Mary Jo:
"Larson-Green applied to Microsoft right after she got her business management degree from Western Washington University, only to be told no. But she did land a job at desktop-publishing-software maker Aldus working on the product support call lines.
Microsoft "discovered" Larson-Green after a few Softies attended a talk she gave comparing Microsoft compilers to Borland compilers and asked her to run a Visual C++ focus group for the company. In 1993, she ended up landing a job on the Visual C++ team, where focused on the integrated development environment. She moved to the Internet Explorer team (where she worked on the user experience for IE 3.0 and 4.0) and then, in 1997, to the Office team to work on FrontPage, where she got her first group program manager job. She also did a stint on the SharePoint Team Services team, back when SharePoint was known as "Office.Net.""
Looks like the beginning of the end to me.
On a conspiracy note, is Ballmer kicking out all his potential competitors?
That has most certainly not been my experience with Microsoft PMs when I lived in Seattle. There were more than a few who had zero experience writing code in-industry, and many who I wouldn't trust with a product at all.
There are bad apples in every bunch. The reason MSFT has so many PMs is not that they are under-competent; I suspect it has a lot more to do with the fact that it is a large organization that is often unable to silo teams from each other effectively.
Nonetheless, I still stand by point. I was an SDE at msft in OSD, so I know very well how technically competent PMs are and how much code they write.
I'm certain any PM in devdiv for example would be a great coder.
It may be that it just caught up with him. Or maybe he got too antsy for the CEO role.
Ballmer has lost almost all of his original group of Presidents (I believe Qi Lu is the only survivor). If the board is worth anything, they have to be real pissed at him- all potential successors have now left the company. Microsoft's politics are legendary and Sinofsky was seen as one of the few who could navigate them, now he's out.
I wouldn't be surprised if the board of directors had some extremely harsh words for Ballmer.
If Sinofsky worked (successfully) somewhere else for a few years it should make him a stronger choice as CEO.
* IE 3/4
...Windows is doomed.