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Steven Sinofsky  (Source: ABC News)
Sinofksy wasn't seen as a team player according to reports

There seems to be something afoul in the tech industry in recent weeks, and the stench seems to be coming from the executive ranks of two of the computing industry's top players: Apple and Microsoft.
 
Earlier this month, we learned that Scott Forstall, Apple's Vice President of iOS Software, was shown the door after 15 years of service. According to reports, Forstall was the most "Jobsian" of Apple's executive team and was notorious for being hard to deal with. It was also reported that Forstall often butted heads with Apple design guru Jony Ive.
 
Now it appears that Microsoft has its own executive shakeup in the works. Steve Sinofsky, President of Microsoft's Windows and Windows Live division, left the company today. The move comes somewhat as a shock considering that Windows 8 just launched last month.
 
“It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at Microsoft. I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company,” said Sinofsky of his departure in an email to Microsoft employees.
 
I. First Forstall, Now Sinofsky

While the timing of Sinofsky's departure is a bit startling, the writing has been on the wall for some time with regards to his chemistry with other Microsoft employees. Sinofsky's inability to be a team player is cited as a major reason for his departure, and is reminiscent of Forstall's dismissal.


Sinofsky (left) shows off Microsoft Surface [Image Source: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]
 
AllThingsD reported this afternoon that there was growing tension between Sinofsky and other top Microsoft executives. This news comes weeks after CNET ran a piece detailing Sinofsky's rise to power at Microsoft, and his rather combative style of leadership. CNET's Jay Greene had this to say about how former and current Microsoft execs viewed Sinofsky:
 
Most requested anonymity because they feared potential repercussions. They paint a picture of an executive who is incredibly smart and passionately driven to ship quality software on time. But some also say Sinofsky can create a toxic work environment that has chased talented employees away from a maturing company that's in desperate need of innovative thinking.
 
Sinofsky's leadership style and compartmentalization of tasks and "reporting lines" within the Windows division lead his approach to be labeled as "Soviet Central-Planning." In fact, the toxicity within Microsoft was humorously detailed in an organizational chart comic by Manu Cornet:

 
[Image Source: Manu Cornet]
 
II. Steve Ballmer heaps praise on Sinofsky, points to new leadership

Microsoft CEO Ballmer sent a memo to his staff regarding the departure, and praised Sinofsky's 20+ years of service:
 
As we enter this new era, and with the successful launch of Windows 8 and Surface behind us, Steven Sinofsky has decided to leave the company. Steven joined Microsoft in 1989 as a software development engineer and has contributed to the company in many ways from his work as a technical advisor to Bill Gates, to leading the evolution of the Microsoft Office business, to his direction and successful leadership of Windows and Windows Live as well as Surface. I am grateful for the work that Steven has delivered in his time at our company. [Full memo here]
 
Sinofsky will be replaced by Julie Larson-Green. Larson-Green has been with Microsoft since 1993 and has had a hand in program management, and UI design/research for Windows 7 and Windows 8.


Julie Larson-Green [Image Source: Microsoft]
 
“Leading Windows engineering is an incredible challenge and opportunity, and as I looked at the technical and business skills required to continue our Windows trajectory — great communication skills, a proven ability to work across product groups, strong design, deep technical expertise, and a history of anticipating and meeting customer needs — it was clear to me that Julie is the best possible person for this job, and I’m excited to have her in this role,” said Ballmer of Larson-Green.

Sources: Microsoft, The Verge, AllThingsD, CNET



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RE: Wow
By safcman84 on 11/13/2012 4:23:00 AM , Rating: -1
The desktop is there, and Metro is just a fancy start menu where you can pin all your most used/favourite apps (as in programs and applications, not phone "apps") and documents.

Seriously, 95% of Windows users open the start menu or click on a application shortcut (from the desktop) to open their programs. Now you start up in the start menu, and have all your important apps within easy reach - customised by pinning your apps where you want them.

Windows 8 is good for 95% of PC users. The only people who dont like it (simply cos they dont like change imo) are the technical/power users. 5% of Microsofts target audience at most.

Yes I have used Win 8 before, and yes I am a power user (IT consultant).

Windows 8 doesnt allow us to do our current work better, but it does allow windows to adapt to a fast changing environment which is fast heading to tactile inputs. Windows 8 will allow MS to head Apple off in the corporate world where more and more business users (non-technical) are demanding tablets. COmpanies can now have WIndows across all devices, instead of having a Windows PC, Apple tablet and Apple/BB phone.

Business users and non-technical home users are the biggest market, not power users - though windows 8 doesnt make windows any worse to use for power users, only different.


RE: Wow
By cyberguyz on 11/13/2012 7:35:57 AM , Rating: 2
The very last thing I would call Metro is "Fancy".

Reminds me of the old DesQView and TopView DOS task switchers from the '80s.

Why would I want to have that even running in the background chewing up precious system resources? No thanks!


RE: Wow
By safcman84 on 11/13/2012 8:11:31 AM , Rating: 4
lol, how much resources does it use up? have you seen win8 footprint vs win7?

You cant have done, otherwise you wouldnt be saying that.

at the end of the day the common user is going to like it.


RE: Wow
By safcman84 on 11/13/2012 8:19:33 AM , Rating: 2
oh, it might be a british-english thing, but "fancy" i don't necessarilly mean good. just that it is a start menu with more to it.


RE: Wow
By inighthawki on 11/13/2012 12:09:34 PM , Rating: 2
I don't believe it's a British thing, he probably just never heard someone say that before though.


RE: Wow
By immortalsly on 11/13/2012 5:30:26 PM , Rating: 4
DESQview was the bomb!! QEMM386 anyone? Ah, good times.

Kids these days missed out on the joys of ekking out every last usable byte of the UMB.

<We now return you to your regular kiddie banter>


RE: Wow
By DeepBlue1975 on 11/15/2012 3:18:10 AM , Rating: 2
Best part of that was putting this line in CONFIG.SYS:

DOS = HIGH

Or getting error messages like "HIMEM.SYS is broken"

You could just tell that DOS programmers had fun while performing their jobs :)


RE: Wow
By espaghetti on 11/13/2012 9:11:34 AM , Rating: 5
quote:
Business users and non-technical home users are the biggest market, not power users - though windows 8 doesnt make windows any worse to use for power users, only different.

Wife called yesterday to ask me how to shut down windows 8.
I told her to look it up.
Wife asked how to close browser she opened in "fancy" crap app area.
So, hitting the escape key, messing with disappearing/ reappearing menus flip flopping between styles of GUI are more efficient?
This is bullshit and you know it. Your defense of this goofy OS irritates me.
They need a way to flush metro off of desktop PC's.
I've got my own way...installed Window 7 on wife's new PC.

quote:
Windows 8 is good for 95% of PC users.

Did you take a poll?
Look around the "comments" area.


RE: Wow
By robinthakur on 11/13/2012 11:40:29 AM , Rating: 3
Completely agree with you 100% and I've been using the RTM Windows 8 for ages. Other users of my PC no longer understand how to use it, or why there are 'other' versions of apps like Media Player and IE on the Start Menu screen which seem to run concurrently to the proper versions and sometimes associate with file-types, but not other times. Why some programs like the aforementioned media player disappear on closing to the top left and what those tile things do, and why they aren't shown on the desktop. The whole desktop flipping thing is baffling as well as the multi-monitor weirdness with the hot corners and having to hover in the top right to get to a menu from where you have the option to shutdown.

Getting to Control Panel seems a lot more difficult too. Sometimes it is in the top right hover menu and other times it disappears...and there is another System settings dialog styled like Metro, but seems to duplicate some of the control panel functions but not others.The quickest way I have found is to right click Network Sharing Center in the system tray then open it then navigate up a couple of levels in the breadcrumb. I could probably place a shortcut on the main start menu screen thingy, but...meh. I'm thinking that the head Windows guy leaving is not a good sign for MS or indeed for Windows 8 right now.


RE: Wow
By tamalero on 11/13/2012 12:46:16 PM , Rating: 2
to resume..

Microsoft Windows 8 is just for trying to lure Mac IOS clients into a windows environment.. it is NOT for windows users.


RE: Wow
By NellyFromMA on 11/13/2012 3:48:42 PM , Rating: 2
If Win 8 wasn't for Windows users, don't you think they would have stuck with W@in RT and been done with it. The whole coexistience of the modern UI with the desktop enviornment is because it IS for Windows users. It just maybe isn't for closeminded change-resistant types.


RE: Wow
By DiscoWade on 11/13/2012 1:05:47 PM , Rating: 2
Have you tried to uninstall a program? I have a TechNet Windows 8 version that I upgraded from Windows 7. When I typed "uninstall" all I got was program that had an uninstall icon on the old start menu. In Windows 7, you get a link to the Programs and Features when you type uninstall in the start menu. So now I type "control panel" and search for Programs and Features. For me, what was once one quick step is now two.

I then tried system restore. I typed "system restore" and nothing appeared. It took me a long time to figure out how to run this most important feature.

The TechNet versions of Windows 8 are crippled. You cannot install Windows Media Center from the TechNet downloaded Windows 8 disc. So I don't know if what I experienced is typical of Windows 8. From what I read, the TechNet licenses work on retail discs.

I also tried to close Metro IE10. I wanted it so that I couldn't ALT+TAB to it and when it opened it would go to my home page. There are, after all, times when I don't want the last page I browsed to to be visible. I never did figure out how. Does anybody know? Yes, I did try ALT+F4.

One thing I did like was how the first Windows Home Server is compatible with Windows 8. It would continue to back up without incident. I also liked a settings menu that was streamlined like those on tablets and smartphones. But I grew tired of not knowing what to do and being confused, so I used Windows Home Server to revert back to Windows 7.


RE: Wow
By MrRuckus on 11/13/2012 2:05:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You cannot install Windows Media Center from the TechNet downloaded Windows 8 disc.


I did that this weekend. Win7 Ultimate upgraded to Windows 8 Pro via Technet and installed WMC for Win8 Pro with no issue.

Where did an issue pop up in the install of WMC? I installed it via the directions here:
http://howto.cnet.com/8301-11310_39-57540793-285/h...

When you choose to "add new features to Windows 8" it asks for your WMC product key and automatically knows what it is and downloads it and installs it. It needed one reboot and done here. No issues.

I will add it took me 2 entries for my email before they sent me a key for some reason. But it was within minutes that I received an email the second time around with the WMC key. I know some people have stated it has taken days to get the email.


RE: Wow
By MrRuckus on 11/13/2012 2:16:42 PM , Rating: 2
I will also add I purchased StarDock on the first day of using Windows 8.

I can commend Microsoft on one subject of Windows 8, and thats the license price. The price being less then half or even a 3rd of previous versions of Windows gives it a better chance of a faster adoption rate. The price is right for sure. Should also cut down in piracy as well.


RE: Wow
By Grast5150 on 11/13/2012 3:00:26 PM , Rating: 1
OK Well welcome to Windows 7 not windows 8. To uninstall a program is no different than Windows 7. Hit Start button, just type "Programs", select "Programs and Features", select the application and uninstall button.

windows 8 is basically Windows 7 with a fancy start menu. the only issue that people need to learn is to un-pin the IE and other apps from their start menu and PIN Desktop IE and every other app to the START menu.

COMPLAINT: I do think that Windows 8 on a laptop or workstation should have the default applications for IE, media and such for the desktop versions rather than apps. But that is easily fixed in 10 minutes.

Issue solved.

As far as multi-monitor setup. Windows 8 is the best OS out there for out of box support. I run three monitors. I have choices.... one taskbar on each monitor or only a taskbar when app running on that screen, or just a single taskbar as in previous versions of windows. I can now run Netflix on one Monitor, a game in center monitor, and chat/email on another monitor with no issues are special setup. If you have more than one monitor, Windows 8 is for you!!!!!

I just do not understand the confusion. You want to find an application or control panel. Hit Start button on keyboard or click lower left hand corner of screen, start typing the name of app and select program and/or app. which ever you want.

How difficult is this? Better the MAC OS X which is still using List view menu bar which changes depending on what app is running and such.

Later.


RE: Wow
By NellyFromMA on 11/13/2012 3:42:35 PM , Rating: 2
Uninstalling is the same......... go to settings -> control panel -> add remove programs. It's not different. Any time you want the control panel, just go to the bottom or top right corner and you will see settings there. It's easy once you do it.

When in doubt, just seek a corner. Thats actually better odds than most poorly written software in terms of usablity.


RE: Wow
By tayb on 11/13/2012 12:25:39 PM , Rating: 1
I'll preface this by saying what I've BEEN saying... Microsoft is not doing a very good job educating users. People shouldn't be asking how to close Metro windows or how to shut down their computers. These aren't difficult tasks, in fact their both incredibly easy, but there aren't simple instructions that walk you through these new things... and there should be.

There is a learning curve to Windows 8. It doesn't behave exactly the same way previous versions of Windows did. Things are a bit different. If you can't handle the change, stick with Windows 7. You sound just like the people who whined and moaned endlessly about the ribbon in Office 2007. For new users or users who didn't mind learning new things it was an improvement but for people with concrete at their feet they stuck with Office 2004.

Windows 8 has numerous workflow, performance, and usability improvements over Windows 7. It's a huge upgrade. Once you understand the mouse gestures and the keyboard commands it's far more efficient to use than Windows 7. The desktop improvements are actually substantial but listening to the whining on THIS SITE you would think the desktop is gone and Metro is all you have to work with.

If you aren't interested in learning mouse gestures and keyboard commands to accomplish tasks quickly, stick with Windows 7 for the next decade.


RE: Wow
By espaghetti on 11/14/2012 1:56:57 AM , Rating: 3
I will stick with Windows 7.
You stick with "fancy" crap app screen.
Everything else about 8 I really do like.
I can make Win98, Me, NT, XP, Vista & 7 look like Win95.
Why can't they give me a similar option with 8?
Why do you people freak out like I'm asking them to shave my privates?


RE: Wow
By NellyFromMA on 11/13/2012 3:30:56 PM , Rating: 2
Uh, you do realize the best way to shut off a Win8 Pc is exactly the same as every other consumer device right? Hit the power buttom. Wow...


RE: Wow
By espaghetti on 11/14/2012 1:33:53 AM , Rating: 2
Pressing the power button made it hibernate.
Uh, needed it to shut down.
Yeah, I know to go in power settings, etc...
Uh, thanks for your input.


RE: Wow
By Donkey2008 on 11/29/2012 8:12:31 AM , Rating: 1
So the new interface is so good that I have had to teach almost every new Windows 8 user at my company how to use the new "start menu"? Are you kidding me? My company has over 1,300 users at my site and over 15,000 globally. Do you people understand what a colossal waste of time this will be?

It is not whether Metro is good or bad, it is the fact that users will have to learn a new interface after almost 20 years of being perfectly happy. And for what benefit? "Users will be more productive"? What a joke statement.

By the way, I use Windows 8 at home and have no issues with it as a home or tablet OS.


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