FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Bill Gates Considers Web 2.0 Services a "Sea Change"

Some people may be dismissing Web 2.0 as hype, but not Bill Gates. In a letter to Microsoft's leadership, Gates warned that the shift to Internet-based services represented a major "sea change" that would require the company to "act quickly and decisively" to meet its competitors.

"This coming 'services wave' will be very disruptive," Gates wrote. "We have competitors who will seize on these approaches and challenge us - still, the opportunity to lead is very clear."

Recently, Microsoft launched its "Live" initiative to port some of its flagship products to Internet platforms, putting it in direct competition with Google, Yahoo and others.

In technology trends, Gates has a history of making sure Microsoft becomes the life of the party--or at least the center of attention--even after showing up late. A decade ago, Gates refocused Microsoft on Web initiatives after having been caught flat-footed by the likes of Netscape. The result was Microsoft's continued dominance in an Internet-driven business environment, while leaving much of the innovation (and risk) to others.

Source: AP (via Excite)