Posts Tagged Sun

Microsoft Mesh: Heading in the Right Direction*

In his keynote at Mix08 last week, Microsoft Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie emphasized the growing importance of device and social meshes:

The second scenario we’re working on at Microsoft revolves around the notion of connected entertainment. Building upon this same vision of the device mesh, it’s our aspiration that individuals will only need to license their media once, to organize their subscriptions and collections once, and to use any of their devices to access and enjoy their media, whether on the Web, on the go, in the living room, on the desktop.

And building upon something else I talked about earlier, our vision of the social mesh, we envision each individual having a media-centric or gaming-centric Web presence through which they can express their tastes, interests and affinities. Through which they can interact with others by linking and sharing and ranking and tagging and messaging and notification.

As many of you are already well aware, this vision is being realized today through our progressive enhancements to Xbox live for gaming, through Zune.net and the Zune social for media. Moving forward, more and more and more of our media and entertainment services across Xbox, Zune, and MSN, and across experiences such as Microsoft TV, Media Room, and Media Center will be progressively transformed by this connected entertainment vision.

Ryan Storgaard’s Blog : Ray Ozzie’s Mix08 Keynote Speech Transcript

Listening to Ray really got Marc Canter excited(also, check out this audio interview where Marc describes his Chris Matthews moment). Ozzie is certainly pointing Microsoft in the right direction but falls short for a few reasons. The first is because places and events are missing. Your contact list is just the beginning of your social mesh. In fact, events and the places they form the heart of your social mesh.

Ultimately interoperability is only one part of the device mesh. Things get really interesting when people start making their own, integrating them into the physical world including the human body. Last but not least, server commoditization will push many key portions of the cloud Ozzie envisions off of large corporate servers. Microsoft will carve out a sizable niche but they won’t be a market leader – we’re approaching the end of a cycle. The large companies that thrive as grid utility providers will be more “pure-play” ones like IBM, Sun and even Amazon. As reported earlier, the Second Life Grid is expanding beyond Linden Lab and no matter what virtual world platforms, become most popular, they’re going to need grid resources and virtual goods will be a key component of their business model. Can Ray Ozzie do a Bill Gates and turn Microsoft into a virtual world focused entity?

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