Ah yes, the Evil Empire. A clever moniker when I first heard it has become a remarkably well-known pseudonym. But is it still relevant?
I was very interested by an article about this topic in a May issue of The Economist. The main point: “Microsoft has decided to grow up, make peace with its enemies and work with its industry to form open standards and share vital technology.”
Indeed, as an outsider, I would have been quick to dismiss this and any similar reports as corporate doublespeak. MS doesn't exactly have the best reputation and, in many circles, the pejorative nickname is well-earned.
However, in joining the company I was very pleasantly surprised to find an earnest effort underway to erase the image of brash arrogance and replace it with that of a good corporate citizen. It seems to be understood that this sort of transformation takes a great deal of effort and resources. From initiatives such as Trustworthy Computing to encouraging employees at all levels to interact with the computer-using community (hence this blog!), the company is genuinely interested in an image makeover--and is willing to do what it takes to get it done.
So now it's your turn. Is it working? Have you noticed a shift in the way MS does business? Or do you think (as I likely would have!) that I've been brainwashed by The Man to write such silliness?! I'm looking forward to all of your responses--fire away!