Print 30 comment(s) - last by RedStar.. on Mar 31 at 7:08 AM

Steve Ballmer keeps his kids in check

Fortune Magazine was recently able to have a chat with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer -- this was apparently before the company had announced delays for its Windows Vista operating system and Office 2007 productivity suite and before word began to spread about a mutiny taking place.

The interview touches on Xbox 360 shortages, the company's stock price, and more interestingly, Ballmer's control over his kids:

Do you have an iPod?
No, I do not. Nor do my children. My children--in many dimensions they're as poorly behaved as many other children, but at least on this dimension I've got my kids brainwashed: You don't use Google, and you don't use an iPod.

Wow. Looks like Steve runs a pretty tight ship over there. If you're looking for something to send Steve's kids for their birthday, iPods and Google t-shirts would go over real well.

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Freedom of speach
By Hypernova on 3/30/2006 1:09:15 AM , Rating: 3
Freedom of search?

RE: Freedom of speach
By PLaYaHaTeD on 3/30/06, Rating: 0
RE: Freedom of speach
By nomagic on 3/30/2006 1:59:35 AM , Rating: 3
Other news:

Balmer's children sue Balmer for non-competitve business practice. They claim that Balmer abuses parental power and restricted their right as customers.

RE: Freedom of speach
By kristof007 on 3/30/2006 2:22:27 AM , Rating: 2
LoL .. so what is he going to search with? Yahoo?

Does that mean that they can't use Gmail either? Google Messenger? Google Video? Google Finace? Froogle? Googtionary? Google-teaches-you-how-to-fly? Google-does-your-taxes-for-free?

Just funny how limiting a guy like that can be. Have what you want. If you like IPods .. get em. And if not then that's cool too.

RE: Freedom of speach
By Nekrik on 3/30/2006 2:34:14 AM , Rating: 3
I cannot see how not having access to any or all of the apps listed is in any way limmiting.

RE: Freedom of speach
By Nekrik on 3/30/2006 2:35:59 AM , Rating: 2
Although we are limited by the lack of an edit feature here.

RE: Freedom of speach
By Lonyo on 3/30/2006 6:08:36 AM , Rating: 2
You forgot the only useful thing Google offers: Google Books.
That's the only thing I "need" Google for, as it's very useful for research.
All those others you don't really need, and I personally don't use, or if I do it's not as my main "thing" (Hotmail for email, MSN Messenger, youtube has half the same videos as Google, etc etc)

RE: Freedom of speach
By knowyourenemy on 3/30/2006 6:23:40 AM , Rating: 3
"So what's he gonna search with, Yahoo?"


RE: Freedom of speach
By Clauzii on 3/30/2006 9:51:43 PM , Rating: 2

< Nodding my head all the way to work - and back again - I´m still in a state of total chock over THAT one >

RE: Freedom of speach
By Wwhat on 3/30/2006 5:20:50 AM , Rating: 2
nice one that [throws chair] :)

The Market Votes With Its Wallet
By kelmon on 3/30/2006 2:19:16 AM , Rating: 2
I seem to recall a similar story a while back when an executive
on the Redmond campus was allegedly dismayed by the number
of iPods being used by employees such that he sent out an email
advising employees that there were other good alternative MP3
players (i.e. non-Apple products that used Windows Media files).
This always sounded like a stupid thing to do. While it has
already been noted that "forbidding" someone to do something
is one of the easiest ways to make them do it, it should be
obvious that if there were better alternatives then surely
everyone would be buying them instead? Maybe they should
dwell on that point a little longer...

Let's face it, if Steve's own kids voluntarily buy iPods, use iTunes,
search using Google, and get their email through GMail, then
maybe that says something about the state of the competitors'
products. If they are quite happy buying/using the competitors'
products then that again is surely a good indication of how well
Microsoft is doing. Forbidding something seems to be a
remarkably dumb thing to do given the useful information that
can be provided by letting people make their own damned

RE: The Market Votes With Its Wallet
By Dracip on 3/30/2006 3:19:14 AM , Rating: 2
"it should be
obvious that if there were better alternatives then surely
everyone would be buying them instead? Maybe they should
dwell on that point a little longer..."

Maybe they realise that it isn't true.
Betamax was a much better system than vhs, yet all believe the advertising hype and went with a system that needed many years of continued developement just to reach the quality betamax started with.
Millions continue to choose Intel processors although, according to so many tech sites, the are inferior to those from amd.
The same applies to mp3 players. Many reviews state that ipods are overpriced for what the deliver and that there are much better players out there for less, but most people aren

RE: The Market Votes With Its Wallet
By bupkus on 3/30/06, Rating: 0
RE: The Market Votes With Its Wallet
By Dracip on 3/30/2006 3:27:57 AM , Rating: 2
't interested (oops, wrong button - damn the lack of an edit button, and this tiny text window, too) in quality. It seems the majority of people is just intersted in having what everyone else has.

'So many people express their individuality by behaving the same way as everybody else.'
- quote from: can't remember

And he could be lying!
By Christopher1 on 3/30/2006 4:06:03 AM , Rating: 1
And we do not know for sure if he is lying about his kids not owning an iPod or not!

Anyone have any chance to go to this guy's home and test this presumption?

I just bet that we find out that he is LYING THROUGH HIS TEETH!

RE: And he could be lying!
By S Random on 3/30/2006 4:32:34 AM , Rating: 3
makes sense to me, if his source of livelyhood (mircosoft) is being challanged (google and apple) then why shouldnt he push it on his children not to support his compition. Fact is economically both google and apple are the enemy

RE: And he could be lying!
By Wwhat on 3/30/2006 5:04:02 AM , Rating: 2
Wanne bet his kids use google anyway? unless they are some new breed of kid.
How old are they btw? they must be in their late teens
And what kind of mp3 player do they use? some notebook running windows strapped to their back?

Anyone really think they care?
By Nekrik on 3/30/2006 4:44:27 AM , Rating: 2
Some of these post actually look like attempts at being serious cooncerning their content (granted it's hard to see sarcasm in text). I can't believe anyone actually acts like this matters in the least to them, his kids, or the world of software consumers. Did anyone expect anything different? You figure Jobs got his wife a Dell for Christmas? People tend to endorse the products of the companies they work for, and not those of their competitors. All I've seen thus far is that Apple and Google are good at is advertising, and that won't keep them up forever.

RE: Anyone really think they care?
By Wwhat on 3/30/2006 5:09:34 AM , Rating: 2
Yes I think jobs would allow his kids to use windows. (after all kids want to play games ;])
Only a derranged person would boycot something because it's from another company than he or she works for, unless of course the person in question is because of their position aware of unsavory things about the competition that go beyond reason and impel them to feel that supporting the other company is unacceptable.

By lemonadesoda on 3/30/2006 9:21:46 AM , Rating: 2
The kids must be pretty smart to have installed Windows on their macs... because for sure, the house if full of free state-of-the-art macs.

Perhaps he is actually encouraging them to use Windows... as an intelligence test. See how well they do...

By SoylentG on 3/30/2006 12:17:16 AM , Rating: 2
That is hi-larious

RE: Lawl.
By Samus on 3/31/2006 4:28:29 AM , Rating: 2
They must call him Hitler around the house, too.

I like.
By berat556 on 3/30/2006 12:35:17 AM , Rating: 4
Well I would be a MICRO$OFT fan boy I my dad made a couple of billions out of it.

It just comes with reputation
By clementlim on 3/30/2006 9:04:17 AM , Rating: 2
My guess is that Stevie is just trying to protect his reputation as a top Microsoft executive. What will happen if Bill Gates went to Steve's house and found Steve's kids jamming with iPod and uses Google bar on FireFox? It's not as much as trying to be overzealous or just comes with the reputation.

RE: It just comes with reputation
By bupkus on 3/30/2006 12:06:07 PM , Rating: 2
I can just imagine one of Ballmer's kids, in a mood of teenage rebellion, installing Linux on his computer, just to get a rise out of his father. Hehe, now that would be precious on tape.

By thesid on 3/30/2006 6:47:04 AM , Rating: 2
thats just lame and immature

This sounds like GM
By d4a2n0k on 3/30/2006 2:53:28 PM , Rating: 2
Where their employees that dont drive GM cars have to park in the back parking lot and have to walk a half mile to the building.

That makes for happy employees. ;)

By Clauzii on 3/30/2006 9:53:18 PM , Rating: 2
This is the MOST useless information I ever read on the net. Period.

you guys can't tell he was joking?
By RedStar on 3/31/2006 7:08:36 AM , Rating: 2
get serious :)

Ima brainwasher!!

pass the soap

By Darthvoy on 3/30/06, Rating: -1
"I want people to see my movies in the best formats possible. For [Paramount] to deny people who have Blu-ray sucks!" -- Movie Director Michael Bay
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