"eWEEK: Linux, which you have described as your
greatest competitive threat, is also pushing into the embedded
space. What exactly is the nature of the Linux threat to
Microsoft and what is your strategy to deal with it?
BALLMER: The Linux approach has led to an
environment from which we can all learn, as it's a great way to do
developer support. ...there is something about the way the Linux
community supports itself that every platform provider should study
if it wants to provide broad community. ...the other thing the
Linux community has done well is the support of unusual devices,
smart devices, embedded devices, and that's why you see us making
the investments we are in support and around the embedded
community. ... The application development infrastructure on Linux
is pretty weak, there's not really much there today. Now you can
cobble stuff together here and there, but that doesn't lead to an
integrated type of experience.
Linux has established its position in three places: in the
ISP market with Apache, computer science schools and the unusual
embedded device markets (and sporadically in other server places).
... And Microsoft programs and initiatives will attack on every one
of these fronts."
"eWEEK: You have an agreement with Corel Corp.
that gives you the option of using Corel to port your .Net
applications to Linux if you so choose. Are you considering
BALLMER: We have said that we are going to take
a part of the .Net Common Language Runtime system and make that
available on other platforms, including Linux. I stand by that
statement, as we view that as a great tool to get C# and our
infrastructure into the academic and computer science arena.
Porting our .Net applications to Linux is not top of mind today.
That doesn't mean it might not happen some day, but we're just not
thinking about it now."