Microsofts scheduling of its professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles and the launch of Windows XP in New York during the same week apparently raised quite a stir among its PR and product teams. According to a friend of the Furball, Microsoft execs were less than pleased about the arrangement, knowing that the press, developers and assorted Microsoft groupies would have to shuttle between coasts if they were to attend both events or simply choose one over the other.
Once the gaffe was realized, claims the tattler, there was little that could have been done to move either event, given the time and location constraints. In addition, because of the 3-hour time difference between Los Angeles and New York, Microsoft had to coax developers on the Left Coast to attend the crack-of-dawn screening of the XP event with the promise of a free copy of XP Pro. “I wonder if you could have asked for a free Xbox instead,” mused the Mouser.
Noting another Redmond PR move, the Kitty wondered if the Microsoft marketing folks may not have inadvertently launched a career change for Chairman Bill when they got him an appearance on an upcoming episode of “Frasier.”
A Tinseltown tattler tells Spence that Gates was in Los Angeles recently producing a promotional video aimed for release at Comdex. “Its called Tex in the City,” the tattler told El Gato. “And it features Sarah Jessica Parker as a frustrated computer user.”
“Hmm, given Bills ongoing attempts to strong-arm the Web services arena,” laughed the Lynx, “he should have based his video on “The SOAP-ranos.”
The Furball hears from an old Katt crony that there are a lot of satisfied grins among the folks at MicronPC when the name of their former CEO, Joel Kocher, comes up. Kocher pretty much proclaimed the PC biz DOA and handed his PC division to Gores Technology Group last May. Under the agreement, Gores assumed the assets and liabilities of the PC unit and got $70 million in cash from Micron Electronics. Surprisingly, MicronPC just announced that it has reached an operating profit for the first time in two years. Meanwhile, Kochers new Atlanta-based Web hosting company, Interland, formed through a merger between Micron Electronics and Interland, recently announced a fourth-quarter operating loss.
Although El Gato fancies himself a top gossip and rumormonger, he hates to see readers taken for a ride by an Internet hoax. So, if any of your co-workers or friends send you a story about a new operating system called Cesium, dont believe it. Cesium is a hoax from the folks at Slant-Six.org and not, as an article on its site states, an operating system developed at MIT that will drive a wedge through the Windows vs. Linux debate. The article was later revealed to be a hoax, but only after it had caught the attention of many salivating geeks.