i would love to know if there is any interest in us providing an "R Tools for Visual Studio" product. think Project, Edit, intellisense, Debug, Deploy, linux debug, etc. support for R in VS.
if we did this, it would be a fork of PTVS (and free + open source of course).
also chances are you wont have to spring for it as VS (community edition) is free :).
Having something as easy to use as Excel, with access to R's scripting language, would make my life immensely easier.
That said it sounds interesting, but I would love to hear how committed the team is to keeping these things alive. What VP is behind PTVS and willing to put their butt on the line for it? I think a lot of people might still have a bad taste in their mouth after IronRuby and IronPython got a lot of attention from MS and then languished and were abandoned for years. Let's not let that happen again please.
re PTVS/RTVS - the VP behind them is joseph sirosh. he's a huge Python & R fan & just gave us four more reqs to do more (where more == docker+linux+ipython/jupyter - ping if interested!).
re ironruby/ironpython - i hear you. tho note that ironpython at least is alive & well. PTVS itself supports all interpreters. our work is all open source so it helps a little.
Incidentally, I already have a feature request! :-)
As a heavy C++ user (also using R for EDA & analytics), one feature I love about PTVS is mixed-mode debugging: https://pytools.codeplex.com/wikipage?title=Mixed-mode%20deb...
Any chance of that for "RTVS"? Preferably with cooperation with Rcpp, http://rcpp.org/
(There's some basic support for Rcpp in RStudio -- https://support.rstudio.com/hc/en-us/articles/200486088-Usin... -- but it's rather limited.)
// Preview Release Notes make a note of "Code completion for C/C++", but don't mention libclang (use of which is interesting on its own, IMHO, since it better indicates the quality improvement to expect): http://www.rstudio.com/products/rstudio/download/preview-rel...
I may use the R equivalent if it existed, but I'm not terribly competent with R.
However, in the past six months they continue to become more surprising, interesting and relevant on many fronts every day. And the pace seems to be accelerating. I might dare say they're the most exciting "big" tech company in 2015...
Can Microsoft reverse this? It's hard for them, because they are so successful. Most other successes look small: e.g. their incredible and profitable xbox business isn't in the same league. To rejuvenate themselves would be like Google coming up with a better business than adwords, or xerox a better business than copiers. It's like Apple TV: a wild success for anyone else, but for a long time, a "hobby" for Apple.
BTW: Apple's rejuvenation, and creating several new categories, is incredibly unusual.
Can Microsoft maintain constant revenues? Windows still has a huge amount of software for it, and businesses rely on it. They also rely on Office. Phones and tablets have not really began to displace these business roles. Microsoft has made Office for them anyway; and it also has Windows for tablet (on Intel). These won't displace current phones/tablets - but they will enable businesses to keep using their software and Office.
Of course, there is an opportunity for new ways to serve businesses, using mobile devices, that will make the old Windows software obsolete. This is how Windows could die. Office might be harder to kill.
This is completely false. Microsoft's revenue has grown every year for the last 10 years except for one. I'm not really sure how to respond to the rest of your comment based on that fact.
Are any of these arguments actually supported by the data?
Sort of: MSFT had a hard time around the year 2000 due to the bubble, as you pointed out. But their growth since then has been pretty respectable, especially in the last 5-10 years, and if you compare their growth rates with GOOGs they really aren't far off despite MSFT being a much bigger company during that time.
Overall I feel like you are asking the question "How will MSFT ever recover" and I reject the premise of that question. Recover from what? What evidence do you give that MSFT is not doing well right now?
PG wrote that essay 7 years ago. Take a look at MSFTs numbers for the last 7 years. FWIW I suspect I am the younger half as I was only 18 when he wrote that essay and I don't think it's 'old news' or news at all because it's simply not true. And that PG anticipated this counter-argument doesn't make it incorrect.
"Dead" is misleading hyperbole - pg emphasises that MS is "highly profitable". His data point is that MS, in his and startups' experience, is no longer a threat. It's just another big company.
I was wrong to say "constant" revenues. But I think my main point, the contrast between a rapid growth period and a steady mature phase, is accurate. The MAX graph shows it, but it's hard to appreciate the exponential growth on the left, because it's so small - expanding the scale would help show it. But MS was seen as astonishingly successful leading up to 1986 - data isn't even displayed for that far back. MS was founded in 1976, DOS released in 1981, which was an instant best seller, on the coattails of IBM's PC, which opened floodgates to the pent-up demand for desktop computers, with the reassurance of "I.B.M.".
So maybe "past its prime" isn't accurate either, but "past its period of incredible meteoric rise". Depends on the definition of "prime".
Above is the quantitative data you're asking about. But there is qualitative data, too, which is the basis of predicting what will happen next. By looking at the basis of MS's business success, and knowing how businesses tend to evolve from studying other business, we can try to predict what will happen next. MS's success was based on IBMs -> DOS -> Windows -> Office, leveraging each to the next. With IBMs, DOS and Windows no longer dominant, they are left with Office fileformats and skill at serving business customers. These are strong skills, but the aren't the terrifying killer competitive advantages MS used to have.
So, maybe it's mostly the dramatic constrast with what MS used to be.
If you didn't see what MS was before, the contrast wouldn't strike you.
I see that MS are having success with cloud-based enterprise stuff. This makes sense, if it's the same software; they are good at serving enterprise customers, who would prefer not to have to switch. It may also represent going up-market - which is typical for incumbents whose low-end is under threat. It often leads to better and better profits until the low-end is eventually good enough and takes over. (Christiansen's The Innovator's Dilemma). Resources and technical talent and business skill aren't enough to save a company when the grounds of their advantage erodes.
I think the basis of pg's idea is especially for web-based companies. You may have heard of startups getting killed by google moving into their space (or, buying them). It's especially dangerous for people making add-ons for twitter, facebook etc. Now, MS used to do with with Windows: you'd make a product, it was good, MS would roll out that feature in Windows itself... you are dead. But that doesn't happen for the web, because it isn't MS's platform. And so people aren't scared of MS - that's pg's point, I think.
Maybe Microsoft is coming back from the dead the same way Apple did?
Also April 2007, 2 months before the first iPhone was released, PG couldn't have predicted the impact of the iPhone in the mobile world. The only mention of it is : "of course Apple has Microsoft on the run in music too, with TV and phones on the way."
But in the desktop world, Windows is still 90% of the operating system share , (or at least 80% according to ) It's not surprising that every developer in the SV uses a MacBook: it's the best working tool for them. But if you look out in the rest of the world, people are not buying >$2000 laptops/desktops when they are perfectly fine with a Windows laptop to do their work&play.
No, because Microsoft was never "dead" the same way Apple was.
Apple was unprofitable and on the brink of bankruptcy.
Microsoft had new competition, but was still making more money than Apple or Google during its "slump".
Apple recovered by appealing to the general public instead of a niche market. Remember what owning a Mac was like in the 90s? Microsoft is "recovering" by appealing to a niche market segment that they've spent most of their corporate history alienating: the open source hacker crowd, ie, people who read this site.
PG only thought MS was dead because, like Sauron in the Third Age, its shadow no longer darkened the world he saw. That doesn't mean that Sauron/MS's power was broken, just that it wasn't affecting the Hobbits/hackers in the Shire/Silicon Valley. Now Sauron is back and he wants to come smoke pipeweed and eat second breakfast, and everyone is very aware of how healthy and dapper he is these days.
I couldn't tell where he was coming from - the only rationalisation seemed that he was talking exclusively about the startup scene in silicon valley. Case in point, we would have been surprised if we came across anyone using a machine running OS X, unless it was a personal toy they brought into work.
iOS isn't even the market share leader among smartphones:
Meanwhile Microsoft Windows has over 90% of the desktop operating system market share:
And 95% of the market share in productivity software (so Office):
Yet Microsoft can't compete with Apple and Google, because they have a clear monopoly when Microsoft doesn't? It's crazy talk.
Web-based apps are also battling it out on mobile. Lot of apps are just wrappers for accessing web-based content. Performance is the primary obstacle stoping mobile from going completely web-based. Both the new entrants, Tizen and Firefox OS (not to mention Chrome OS) have thrown their weight behind web apps. We consume radio and youtube through web. Its not a stretch to imagine Netflix being accessed primarily through the browser in the future.
The growing SaaS business model is highly favoured to web-based apps. It is taking longer than expected, but the future is generally trending in the direction of web-based apps.
Are you suggesting that it's rare for people to use Outlook or Skype?
R vs SAS, why is SAS preferred by private companies?
Also, congrats to the Revolution Analytics team!
TIBCO is probably more concerned about this. Their TIBCO Enterprise Runtime for R (TERR)  competes directly against Revolution R Enterprise.
The Microsoft acquisition positions Revolution Analytics in a much stronger position against TIBCO. Specifically, it will allow them to integrate with Microsoft's BI stack (Excel, PowerPivot, SharePoint) to compete against TIBCO SpotFire.
I wonder if we'll see R support integrated with Office in the future. Native R integration with Access and Excel could be pretty cool.
M$ = Microsoft isn't seen as the best. Here is conversation on Stack Overflow.
Guess the days of referring a negative point of view towards Microsoft or a Microsoft IT Department isn't accepted anymore by using communicating this by M$.
I blame the stupid text message - script kiddie leet speech that came afterwards destroying this practice.
Congratulations! A bright movement for both companies.
Microsoft seems to be enhancing their products/services in enterprise while applying free/low-price on consumer side to compete with Apple/Google, balancing revenue and guidance to wallstreet. Search engine for Google is similar to Enterprise sales for Microsoft while both compete in consumer space.
It may make MS competitive to companies in data processing space like SAS/IBM ...etc.
The audience for the euphemism is mostly customers and employees, the impression that is sought to be created is that existing customers interests will continue to be served -- but even better by the new, bigger, stronger team -- and that employees are becoming part of something that includes their existing firm (and that they aren't going to be sacrificed.)
Of course, euphemisms alone can only do a limited amount to mitigate customer and employee concerns, but their cheap, and everyone has used pretty much the same ones for decades.
Microsoft loves linux, What about a new name: OpenWinds?
When I've been thinking about it, I was considering a much shorter period of time than three years, though, something more like 3-6 month periods, so your competitive edge comes from the newest features, and anything older is Open.
I feel like it would work really well with a premium SaaS model- open source everything that's free to everyone, and have a reserved feature set that's only for paying customers. Paying customers get new features first, and eventually, everyone gets them.
Of course, at some point, you might shoot yourself in the foot by making enough of the app free and open source that no one will want to pay for whatever you've been developing lately. You also, of course, have to always have compelling new stuff coming out to keep subscribers.
I definitely don't think it's viable for every project, or even most projects, but "openlag" definitely seems like it has a place.
Microsoft Cloud Platform:
So Google can analyse user's software too.