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Good News and Bad News for Microsoft

The good: Steve Ballmer will retire in the next 12 months (read his memo to employes here). The timing may seem strange, coming just after a major reorganization, although his “retirement” may not be optional and may have been part of the board's plans all along. This is the end of a decade long nightmare for the company. This does not necessarily mean things will get better for them but it does create the space for something interesting to happen. If the board is smart they will not put another sales guy in charge.

The bad: Controversy over an NSA backdoor in Windows 8. The original report was of a warning by the German government that Windows 8 is a security risk due to the backdoor. This report has been denied by the German government. Government denials of such things are not always credible. Whether this specific report is true or not, raising a question about the security of Windows 8 is the last thing Microsoft needs at the moment. They just can't seem to catch a break with Windows 8, although refridgerator toasters do not exactly deserve any breaks.