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Posted Sunday, June 7, 2009 8:22 PM


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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Software Giants






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Post #730461
Posted Monday, June 8, 2009 7:12 AM


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I always wonder what that research funding actually goes to; it never seems to be the 'next big thing'. When Microsoft comes out with something really new and innovative it typically seems to come from some other company they've acquired (like the really awesome motion tracking tech they bought with 3DV).

Obviously, this is only my interpretation. Does anyone know if Microsoft research has produced any other products/technologies that were directly useful to users?
Post #730659
Posted Monday, June 8, 2009 12:28 PM


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Good points, Steve. I think that one of the things we need to do as developers and admins is keep a file of ways to market ourselves. This is true in good job markets as well as bad. The market dominance of Microsoft is a good reason for our employers and clients not just to invest in software from that company, but to also invest in those who know how to work with it. Thanks for another good note for the file...

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Post #730893
Posted Monday, June 8, 2009 1:17 PM
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"R&D expenditure ... Microsoft leads the way at US$8.1B"

Maybe I am too cynical but how much of this is going to be true "new ideas" - R&D is usually something you can write off to tax - these "software giants" are also accounting giants - I bet if you ever saw the detail they would be claiming as R&D all sorts of things the smaller players never thought you would get away with ...





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Post #730930
Posted Monday, June 8, 2009 10:21 PM


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Some of it is new ideas and research. I'm sure Microsoft Research falls under here. Do we get products out of there? I think Surface came out of there, but I'm not sure how tightly tied it is to other products.

However I do think that both practical and pure research is good. People investigating new things and seeing what is possible, though perhaps not practical, is good.

It's also good that there is work being done in practical areas as well.








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Post #731109
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 6:05 AM


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I think we should be very careful in these times when commenting on things such as R&D investments and mentioning amounts of money. As we all now know all too well, many companies invested lots of money, but in the wrong places, the wrong technologies and often times, just throwing good money after bad. Anyone who would question such a comment need only look at Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers, General Motors, and Chrysler just to name a few. One glaring example might be to look at GM's big investments in gas guzzlers when it was plainly clear that gas prices were not going to stay down.

What a company invests versus how it invests it is what matters. Right now I don't have a lot of faith in Microsoft and being in the field a good deal these days I am hearing the same thing from end-users. Vista and Office 2007 are still percieved as large blunders and relative failures and over recent weeks I did hear two negative comments about SQL Server 2008 and saw it fail to run some very basic code that runs fine in 2005. Probably not a crisis, but it reminds me that software companies have to do updates to keep a revenue stream flowing, and how closely that is tied to truly "new technologies" and "improved performance" versus just keeping the bottom line pumped up - well, thats where the amounts may be impressive, but the reality may be quite different.


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Post #731356
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 9:39 AM


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I just hope that whole R&D budget wasn't to come up with "Bing". (Which I've tried, and like just fine, but its chances of accomplishing any serious move in the search market are tiny.)

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Post #731572
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 10:07 AM


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a billion dollars is a lot. It's hard to spend it, and MS moves in a lot of areas. Check out Microsoft Research. The idea isn't that everything gets turned into a product, and it shouldn't be. I'd like to see them branching out, trying new things, and making the research public if they don't know how to use it. Let someone else do something with it.

I'd also like to see more stuff done at universities, with the patents being made available somehow in a public way. Maybe to all funders (and require 3 or more), maybe licensed by the university to anyone, etc.

Office 2007, some people love it, IT people tend to hate it. It was an experiment, and in many ways I applaud them for trying something new. There is a lot of pressure to get something "sales-y" that can generate revenue, and I would hope that is classified as expenses, not R&D. They are separate items on the income statement, and there's billions in that area.

However research goes into many things. Some of the R&D hit Bing, I'm sure, but most of the visual stuff would likely be marketing/sales stuff.







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Post #731610
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 12:21 PM
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Anyone who would question such a comment need only look at Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers,


Lehman was the last company standing of the old boys what destroyed it was actually the very nature of the US bond market it is opaque so you can hide a lot from the regulators and accountants.

General Motors, and Chrysler just to name a few. One glaring example might be to look at GM's big investments in gas guzzlers when it was plainly clear that gas prices were not going to stay down


I would not comment about Chrysler but GM I know first person, the gas guzzlers is not the problem the cost structure based on the gas guzzlers that was the problem, I worked on the application that would have allowed GM to reduce head count by half just on the production side, the math needed adjustment but GM IT was treating the engineer who created something so important as a hired hand on call only when needed. I met with his team twice at their GM office and asked for the math changed to cost each product built and I was promptly removed from the project.

The most disturbing is the electrical concept car project is run now by mechanical engineers, that is like hoping a VB only programmer can write and cleanup very low level C++ code and the short answer is no.

Vista and Office 2007 are still percieved as large blunders and relative failures and over recent weeks I did hear two negative comments about SQL Server 2008 and saw it fail to run some very basic code that runs fine in 2005.



Office 2007 needs the top bar redesigned so I don’t need to run a search to find save as, that is base functions must be available by default when last I checked this is a user application. SQL Server 2008 breaking T-SQL code in most cases Microsoft is not to blame because ANSI SQL users this writer included cross reference the T-SQL reference with current ANSI SQL checking level of compliance. When T-SQL code breaks in most cases it means Microsoft ANSI SQL compliance is improving which is good thing. The only problem I see with SQL Server 2008 is the SSRS documentation telling users that file system deployment is the default when it takes away base IIS dependent features while rich companies using SharePoint or TFS(Team Foundation Server) are not affected, that creates two layers of SSRS users. The documentation needs to create alternative deployment paths so companies can choose deployment based on needs.


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Post #731778
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 12:34 PM
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Obviously, this is only my interpretation. Does anyone know if Microsoft research has produced any other products/technologies that were directly useful to users?


Microsoft research gave us more than five different implementation of transactions that can be propagated through application layers that is major software implementation achievement. LINQ has pedestrian algebraic issues but one day developers can create the object SETS and pass the objects to the relational model SETS and deploy in very short time. I asked for elliptic curve in .NET cryptography and got it the very next version of .NET so I see major results from Microsoft research. The reason in a web application security needs to be implemented based on each component features because most security affect application performance.

And Bing is still software engineering search results challenged because I got useless results and when I get useless results in search it is time to rewrite that part of your code.

http://blogs.msdn.com/shawnfa/archive/2007/01/22/elliptic-curve-diffie-hellman.aspx







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Post #731784
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