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August 15, 2006

I'm Giving an EETalk on "Software Qualityism" Today

If any MSers are interested, I'm giving a talk today on "Parallels Between Environmentalism and Software Quality". It's this blog entry inspired by the book Collapse, expanded into a talk with Q&A to follow. If you ask the right question I might even explain how Guns, Germs, and Steel relates to Microsoft. The talk is at 10 am in 34/Quinault if you want to come by; it will also be recorded for posterity.

Posted by AdamBa at August 15, 2006 07:43 AM

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So are you planning on paying Jared Diamond a royalty for regurgitating his epilogue on how Microsoft and IBM relate to Guns, Germs and Steel? Oh, and BTW, I agreed with Mr. Diamond when he wrote it, years ago...but today, Microsoft is falling more into his IBM model and is not the epitome of advanced evolution that he postulated.

Posted by: Um, OK at August 15, 2006 09:58 AM

UO: I haven't seen that. It's not in my copy (Norton trade paperback, probably bought around 2001). What does he say? My thoughts are more about Microsoft vs. Silicon Valley.

- adam

Posted by: Adam Barr at August 15, 2006 07:21 PM

In later copies he does an "Afterword" dated 2003 which he talks about some of the things in this article

Posted by: Um, OK at August 15, 2006 09:53 PM

Stupid link disappeared on me --> http://www.strategy-business.com/press/16635507/20101

Posted by: Um, OK at August 15, 2006 09:54 PM

Interesting. Is that the actual "Afterword" or is it just a related link?

I disagree with his own analysis actually. His whole point in "GG&S" is that the people in New Guinea were *not* less intelligent than the people in Europe, they were instead hurt by geographical issues. Then he starts talking about how Microsoft does well because Bill Gates is so great. WTF?!?

I agree with his Silicon Valley analysis, but in my opinion Microsoft is the New Guinea in the comparison. Geographic isolation, and less cross-hiring with other companies, has left us as the ones who lack the weapons, defenses, and tools to win. The fact that we're still in there kicking shows that the analysis is imperfect (and since this is about individuals in the short term, not societies in the long term, we can overcome a lot of these issues; and plane fare to California is pretty cheap; etc).

- adam

Posted by: Adam Barr at August 16, 2006 04:05 PM

No, the link just had related dialog to the Afterword. I didn't feel like typing a bunch of text (or plagiarizing or whatever). I have a whole diatribe on how Microsoft has changed since he did his analysis (I think we are worse off now), but not the energy right now to write it.

Posted by: Um, OK at August 16, 2006 07:12 PM