Uh-oh, it’s google

So now I have GMail, the Google Toolbar, the Google Deskbar, and the Google Desktop.  To search MSDN help, I use google. At home, all my computers use Google as their home page.  When I want to browse the web on my phone, I use Google Number Search.

See a trend here? 

I work for Microsoft.  I own plenty of Microsoft stock.  I want Microsoft to succeed.  But right now Google is kicking our butt.  We’re so far behind everyone else on these things, and Google is so far ahead of everyone else.

Both Cyrus and Mini-Microsoft have noticed.

I say “right now” because I think it’ll change.  Microsoft is working hard to change the picture.  I think we can do it.  Watch Microsoft pull all the peices together & produce a highly-integrated, high-performance, high-value story that is 10x better than Google.

It should be exciting.

Comments (59)

  1. Jeff Parker says:

    I guess it would depends as well on how MS Does it. If they were to turn the developers loose and keep the marketing guys out of it, yes. I remember way back when MSN came out and tried to be a search engine. I used to get so pissed at it because you download IE, you instantly get set over to MSN, you got Advertising, Pop ups, a Marketing Extraveganza. Google plain and simple you get what you want.

  2. Phil Wells says:

    I hope MS doesn’t pull it off.

    We don’t need one company that provides every useful application on the PC. Look at what happened with the browser – we’ve all had to put up with a sub-standard application for years now because MS successfully killed off Netscape, won 95% market share, then stopped innovating. I’m hoping things may slowly change with the advent of Firefox, but I’m not optimistic about any large-scale reversal.

    Similarly, VS.NET is so crappy because there’s virtually no alternative in the .NET IDE world. As a result .NET developers are stuck using tools that are literally years behind those of their Java counterparts.

    Competition is good. We need more of it, not less. Go Google!

  3. Greg L says:

    So, this is a bad thing why? I don’t understand the Microsoft mentality of "we must be the be-all, end-all for everything." How about focusing on making what you already provide better, as in SECURE? BUG-FREE? Every time Microsoft tries to steamroll over another company my dislike for the Microsoft "attitude" renews my disgust for their GREED.

  4. jaybaz [MS] says:

    Phil: As you say, some of the Java IDEs have very cool features that VS is lacking. We’re seeing some developers choose to code in Java instead of C# because the IDE is better. We don’t want that to happen! We really believe in .Net as a platform, but we better have great tools to support it.

    I hope that VS2005 changes this. We won’t have feature-feature parity with Eclipse or IDEA, but I think we will deliver a huge value to you, and think that it’ll be enough to get your attention.

    Greg: We don’t want to be the be-all/end-all for everything. We shouldn’t be steamrolling anyone. If we do steamroll, I think we’ll quickly find ourselves in deep trouble with the customers and with the justice department.

    We do, however, want to make a lot of money. We can do that by creating awesome software that you love.

    Imagine: You’re using google search, and your friends tell you how Microsoft’s search is so much better/faster/cooler/whatever. If you switch, it’s because doing so has real value for you. You win.

    If we can’t produce better software, we don’t deserve you.

  5. Greg L says:

    Thanks for the response, but I’m sorry to say that it basically validates my position. Security is more important to me than variety. Sick the 50 or 100 developers that will be building the "answer to Google" on the problem of ensuring that the product you deliver today won’t require 2-3 security updates a month for the rest of its useful life.

    I don’t want to sound snide or mean about this, but your attitude really exemplifies what many of us out here in "userville" find so apalling about your company.

  6. jaybaz [MS] says:


    I want to make sure you understand just how huge an investment Microsoft makes in the security of its products.

    If we’re doing it right, you will see that the security of our software increases with each new release. What data do you see?

    Try to compare the number of serious vulnerabilities in Windows XP (3 years since release) to the rates in Windows Server 2003 (1.5 years since release). You probably should compare the first 1.5 years of XP, to keep things even.

    XP SP2 was an awesome step, and required enormous courage to produce. We made a decision to make XP machines much more secure, even though there was the potential to break some existing software. Risky, but important. So we did it.

    Today I feel safe & relaxed just because I’m running XP SP2 and have automatic updates turned on. I’m feeling pretty good about that.

    Speaking from the trenches, I see that we are doing a thorough job of building defense in depth. We go far beyond trying to protect against buffer overruns. We are using a variety of coding, design, and analysis techniques to guard against possible security vulnerabilities.

    For example, last night I checked in a series of automated checkin tests that run FxCop-based security checks on all of the managed assemblies in the debugger, C# IDE, and C# compiler. That means that every code change to those components first has to pass cleanly through FxCop.

    Mike Howard’s blog talks a lot more about security at Microsoft; good reading if you’re concerend.


  7. Greg L says:

    I’ll check out Mike’s blog, as I am indeed concerned about security in your products.

    I don’t doubt that many bright minds there are working hard every day trying to make more secure code. I’m looking forward to the day when these efforts have a significant impact on my job as a network administrator supporting hundreds of Windows desktops. XP SP2 is certainly a big step in the right direction, as are the "secure by default" configurations in some of the newer products.

    But you (and Mr. Gates) must understand that you are working not only against the rising tide of security threats, but against the currents of dissatisfaction that years of Microsoft’s indifference to security issues have engendered in your end users (especially the technical ones). That makes the challenge doubly difficult, and from my position in our trenches, it makes the attitude of "let’s kick Google’s ass so we can make another billion a year" look all the worse.

    I think I’ve rained on your parade quite enought for one day. Thanks for your attention.

  8. jaybaz [MS] says:

    Greg: I absolutely agree. We must do a superb job on security in all our software.

    There’s also a lot of other stuff we need to do better, but there’s not enough room in this little edit box to describe them all.

    Thanks for all your thoughts.

  9. Markoz says:

    Huuu, first Linux, then Mozilla, NOW GOOGLE.

    Yeah, be careful, also Mono of Miguel de Icaza its coming.

  10. Tyroon says:

    >I absolutely agree. We must do a superb job on security in all our software.

    The problem is that the community simply doesn’t trust in your business anymore, just because (your) current unsecurities and (our) headaches are the fruit of the superb job you didn’t before.

    The giant gap got by Firefox in a month is a good example.

    We’re all used to deal with your intentionally incomplete, imperfect products (your colossal support division has to eat). I’m firmly convinced that your business and efforts are not related to software production, but to software vending. Standards and competitors smashing, bells and whistles, FUDs… those are Microsoft specialities we see almost everyday since years.

    So I can’t understand any surprised expression in any Microsoft employee’s face (shareholder or not) when seeing people adopting better, more reliable alternatives. I can, however, understand any promise you make… but don’t ask me to believe it.

    Best wishes for all us. And sorry for my awful english.

  11. I guess MS is targeting Google now because Google is successful and nobody can be successful in the IT space where MS is not.

    In the end, if MS does come out with things that are 10x better than Google, will MS just be exploitive of their position, as they have in the past? Will MS act ethically?

    It’s like what MS did to Netscape. Pour more money into IE than they did into any software that they ever fielded, including the monumental (at the time) investment made into Windows95, just to take away Netscape’s "air supply". Then, when Netscape was utterly prostrate, pretty much abandon the IE product.

    Did anybody else notice that MS went back on their promise that IE would be free now and forever? At some point, they changed direction with IE that it’s no longer free, but rather it’s included with new OS products. To get supported IE, you have to upgrade OS products now, which isn’t free in my book. That change happened about the same time they abandoned IE on Solaris/Linux.

    It’s so clear that all that work on IE had nothing to do with customers and everything to do with controlling the desktop environment for themselves. Not dissimilar to what MS does with the XML formats of Office. Sure, MS sees the advantages of XML (largely marketing advantages), but then it’s implemented in a way that benefits customers not at all. XML in Office was implemented in a way that makes it exceptionally difficult for users and third-parties to use it directly.

    It just seems that so little of what MS does is really focused on customers and so much focused on absolute and complete domination of their markets.

    In the end, the "enemy" (competitors) are defeated, and the IT marketplace is left with slipshod products (like IE, so full of holes that the Department of Homeland Security told people to stop using it this Summer) that MS spends relatively little to support.

    Why does it take the spectre of Google to make MS wake up and "innovate"? Why isn’t MS coming up with new and better tools except as a reaction to what others are doing? I’ll tell you why, because it’s not really about customers at all, it’s about market dominance.

    And, don’t play Ballmer and try and point at all the incremental changes in Office or the new Optical Mouse or other such trivia to indicate that MS "innovates". We’ve heard it before. For years, the reviewers have been saying that Office and Outlook only have incremental improvements. Name a single successful new product, just one new killer app, that MS has actually fielded that wasn’t a reaction to what someone else was already doing.

    Why did MS spend so much on IE development only when there was real competition from Netscape? Why did MS not enter into the Web Search business until Google appeared to be winning big in the Internet? Before you dismiss me as a "basher", answer those questions, honestly.

    Well, MS has a huge cash war chest to "compete" against Google now. But, is it ethical to use their monopoly-level profit margins against other potential competitors? Profits margins now possible only because MS successfully marginalized other competing products in the past through leveraging their desktop monopoly? Is it?

  12. *nix user says:

    Miceosoft Sux!!!!!

  13. DumbLittleKid says:

    MiCRO$OF+ R00LZ, Lin00Kz suqz

  14. Paul says:

    It takes some time but MSN wil get ahaed of Google… It would be better if they (Yahoo, MSN, Google) specialize in some other direction…(Portal, Search, Integrated Search)…

  15. dendrite says:

    Microsoft can compete like none other.

    They are rarely first to the market with a new technology. Once they identify another group doing something lucrative or relevant they become very aggressive. Not just in marketing or strongarm tactics either, they can actually produce a better product. The latter is to the benefit of the consumer.

    Nevertheless, Microsoft can stagnate like none other.

    Without the aspect of competition MS tends to drop the ball on listening what the users want. Demanded features are not added as promptly, security wasn’t focused on. When this happens other options/companies7 will get the users attention.

    MS will then have someone to compete with and the circle of life is complete.

  16. technostradamus says:

    Microsoft not does good products, only does nice-looking for the masses, those big amount of dumbass people, the big majority that uses microsoft products, the majority in illegal form. But with that big number of users and companies, some of them buy their products (companies more because most cant do illegal things, more concerned to big companies…) and those OEM licenses.

    Windows XP is a bit better than predecesors because the microsoft operating system is having an increasing competence, but I still consider it crap.

    Im not a microsoft hater, but I dont like their products and attitude, companies arent good or evil (in a silly idea, a small company that develops competitive products its good, a small company that does crap and FUD is bad, a big company that does crap products and FUD, and has a very big important monopoly having the big amount of the market… is evil). I was a linux user since years, I was probed a large amount of platforms, and I dont use windows, I use other desktop operating system and some unixes in server tasks. I think that microsoft will change their company plans, finding more markets (they are actually doing this), using some not-too-legal techniques for still being the owner of the OS market… But other companies like these market, they can join the forces for kill the big one, and later they will fight for have the big market, but because al of them like the main enemy destroyed…

    Money gives a lot of power if used in smart manner, but others can join, remember the history, nothing is forever…

  17. Tyroon says:

    >Not just in marketing or strongarm tactics either, they can actually produce a better product.

    Well… Where’s that better product then?

    Look at the history. Other companies are surpassed and superseeded by Microsoft always with the use of market tactics (standards corruption, monopoly abuse, FUD, etc.), but when Microsoft is surpassed by its competitors it’s always due to simple and functional factors: better quality, more features, free licensing, cheaper support, contents focused on functionality and not in (MS) marketing…

    At the end the market is reacting to these factors. Microsoft is reacting later, of course (Longhorn makes me panic for several reasons). And maybe Microsoft will monopolize the market again, but don’t try to convince that it will be with a better product. History tells us it’s impossible.

  18. Another Google Desktop security issue to consider. I was forwarded a note of shock about someone who used Google Desktop and found it was caching his banking details (the same person, it should be said, failed to eliminate those details…

  19. Yo says:

    Esta bien, hijos de puta, trabajen todo lo duro que quieran, pero Microsoft va a caer y vamos a estar todos aca viendolo y cagandonos de risa. Aguante el Software libre.

    Muerte a micro$oft.

  20. Anonymous says:

    PulseToday.com Marketing Blog » Blog Archive » MS Employee loves Google!

  21. Anonymous says:

    Nectaroula’s ramblings » Google Desktop reviews

  22. loverty says:

    An honest man!Microsoft already gave us pleasure and enthusiasm of using computer,so we thanks for him!

  23. TCa157 says:

    ms is old now, is time to open source, in a few years (or months) will apear in the desktops a distribution of linux that gonna have the microsoft perfect emulation and be easy to use …

    trade your actions in microsoft for a bubble gum =)

  24. OrioN says:

    ajajaj "yo" 100% a fabor de lo que decis !

    bsd rulz

  25. Anonymous says:

    Rammi.cz » Google, google, google

  26. GOOG Kicks arse!


  27. justin says:

    I dont understand why Microsoft would want to actually compete with Google. Why bother?

    Why not focus on developing safer and more secure operating systems instead?

    Why doesnt Microsoft do something really ununusual and innovative. How about shocking us, with a Microsoft Linux distro?

  28. Anonymous says:

    artERNATIVO » Google le patea el culo a Microsoft

  29. jaybaz [MS] says:

    I’m sorry to see this discussion degrade so quickly. Windows & Linux both r0x0rz. So be it.

    What’s most interesting to me is great software. There’s lots of it, and there’s lots more coming, from all different angles.

    The competition means that everyone is even more motivated to excel. And you, the user, is the benefactor. Enjoy your more powerful & integrated computer experience that’s coming soon.

  30. "Sick the 50 or 100 developers that will be building the "answer to Google" on the problem of ensuring that the product you deliver today won’t require 2-3 security updates a month for the rest of its useful life."

    Greg: No software is perfect software. I wish people would really try to understand this. Every product I’ve EVER used has had updates. They may not come out and say "huge security risk, danger, danger" but looking at the code one could easily see that a LOT of open source projects do this.

    One thing I HATE about open source is that there is no centralized model. On 98% of the applications my small business uses, I have to update them manually. What does that mean? Going to a website roughly once a month to check their version with the ones on each computer. A manual diff of sorts. I don’t do this for Microsoft products we use (though some you have to I believe). Windows/Office Updates catches 98% of all patches and fixes needed. I don’t need to download the ENTIRE APPLICATION again, uninstall the original and then update it. Hell most developers can’t even produce a decent patch system because there really aren’t any that are free.

    I say Microsoft is free to do whatever they want. I want competition with Google because it will keep BOTH Microsoft AND Google on the top of their game. It won’t be another IE where features and security will be stonewalled for upgrades. I think the whole IE/Netscape thing is going to leave a bad taste in everyone’s mouth for a while to come. Microsoft will need to redeem itself by having safe and fair competition. In the end, customers benefit from competition not the companies involved.

  31. justin says:

    "On 98% of the applications my small business uses, I have to update them manually."


    Ever hear of apt-get?

    Or Debian’s distribution model?

    What about Gentoo’s centralised "emerge" system?

    Or Mandrake’s centralised "urpmi" update system?

    " I don’t need to download the ENTIRE APPLICATION again, uninstall the original and then update it" – hmmm.. that’s weird. Just the other day I typed

    urpmi –auto-select

    on my Mandrake system.

    One reboot later (cos it also upgraded the kernel) and i had an entirely upgraded Mandrake 10 system (kde upgraded, postfix upgraded, mysql upgraded, php upgraded, gnome upgraded, xfce upgraded – oh, and about 1,500 other pieces of software on my desktop…)

  32. Julian says:

    M$ is going down and it is too late to stop that. Linux is taking over on desktops which was the last piece missing.

    Consumers have been way too patient with their lame (but shiny) products for years and they are now all eagerly awaiting for an alternative. The alternative is there for a big part of the users and will be ready soon for the rest of them.

    Just wait and see.

  33. CM says:

    Microsoft Search? that will be the day.

    Today I need Google to find things inside MSDN; you guys should hang you head in shame and work harder for that stock that you so proudly mention. Go get some Google stock instead.

  34. CS says:

    I’m not crazy about google’s desktop search. Here’s why: just like web searches you get information overload! Google will find 5,000,000 results but guess what! I’m looking for one piece of information.

    I use a tool called ESP (http://www.espsw.com) which searches for files on my desktop and LAN and presents the files I access most often first. It’s totally spoiled me because now I’m wishing that google could search as good as ESP!

  35. ha ash says:

    I too use Google for everything.

  36. Et says:

    And don’t forget Microsoft’s late entrance into the cellphone market… Look where they are now… No where! Yay!

  37. Vade O Sirius says:

    google ndizvo. have used google since its hey days. some of the stuff i search on google can’t find on msn search or yahoo. GDS is in my opinion the best thing on my desktop. M$ search/find feature is way too slow….

  38. Fred says:

    Microsoft is a programmers’ company providing tools for programmers. Some of whom misuse the power they are given to do things like browser hijacking. End users aren’t given the tools to control/correct that so, I end up hacking the registry and hunting down and deleting files manually. Most customers aren’t gpoing to do that. Isn’t that classic Microsoft? I effectively don’t own my computer. It is owned by Microsoft. They will let me use it within limits. I’m not really a customer. I’m a nuisance that Microsoft tries to work around.

    Contrast that with Google who provides tools for me, the end user / customer. They work. I don’t have to fight Google or any of its products. Never.

    Microsoft is hated, hated, HATED.

    Google is loved, loved, LOVED!

    Surpirse, surprise, SURPRISE!

    You poor bastards. Microsoft has created an autistic organization (on the model of its founder!) that has no capacity to understand or respond to human beings. You don’t see that Microsoft’s anti trust problems arose entirely from being blind to how human beings would react to Microsoft’s actions? Of course you don’t. Not even now.

    I got my first computer in 1978 from Ohio Scientific. I got my computer science degree in 1985. I have sixteen years of factory automation experience with products that run to over 2 million lines of code. I wrote my share of that. I am qualified to assess your coding practices.

    Microsoft STILL has buffer overrun problems?! That is a classic C coder mistake. It’s also a rookie’s mistake to leave a program vulnerable to bad input. Yet you keep doing this over and over.

    Microsoft has very bright people but, they keep hiring the same narrow kind of bright people. Microsoft is a mono culture and misses a lot because of that. Keep doing things as you have with the culture you have and you will get the results you always have.

  39. iigloo says:

    get out of the microsoft world, come over to apples

  40. jaybaz [MS] says:

    Fred: That’s actually some of the most interesting feedback I’ve seen on this post. Thanks for that.

    I certainly am disappointed when I see buffer overruns in our code; even more disappointed that we haven’t updated our coding practices beyond 1979 practices, which would easily protect us from these kinds of mistakes. However, I also see that non-Microsoft software is having a lot of trouble with security vulnerabilities, and it actually looks like we’re doing a better job than the rest.

    I hope that our efforts to reach out to customers via blogs, newsgroups, etc. will help us get the connection that you describe as missing. We need to see the humans using our software, and want you to see the humans making it.

  41. Anonymous says:

    Mr LB’s Marketing Blog » Blog Archive » MS Employee loves Google!

  42. virginia says:

    you aaaare sooo fired….

  43. virginia says:

    you aaaare sooo fired….

  44. Romulognomo says:

    Tell us sincerely. Do you really use IE for browsing the web? Have you ever tried firefox? I like the linux OS, I think KDE is very beaultiful but I´m definetly not an enthusiast.

    But as you said google is far ahead from microsoftin that aspect, I believe ozilla Firefox is far far ahead from IE. IE is completely insecure, I used IE for too many time and when I first installed firefox I wasn´t very sure about what I was doing buty I just couldn´t stand crazy Pop Up opening all the time (mostly because of spyware and the horrible Browser Helper Objects, in my opinion the worst thing MS have ever done compared only with ActiveX).

    PLease tell me if anyone those days really can use IE without having spybot, adaware and many other similar programs intalled.

    I think most of people who understands anything about the software they use (don´t like one hundred toolbars installed randonly in their browsers) will answer no, there is no way for using IE.

    And why microsoft just said recently that there will be no more updates to IE in this versions of windows.

    That really pissed me off man. I´m using firefox and installed firefox in the computers of lot´s of people who can´t stand all the security flaws in IE.

    Good bye to you!

    To Microsoft in general:And make better software, because I need it to play games, and have some nice japanese games on the X-BOX2, or no one will buy it!

  45. ALT1040 says:

    Traducción de unas interesantes declaraciones de un empleado de Microsoft en su blog (traducción por Microsiervos): Resulta que ahora tengo GMail, la Toolbar de Google, la Deskbar de Google y Google Desktop. Para buscar en la ayuda de MSDN uso Google. En casa, todos mis ordenadores tienen Google como página de inicio. Y cuando quiero navegar por la Web desde mi teléfono, utilizo Number Search de Google. ¿Alguien ve una…

  46. jaybaz [MS] says:


    Yes, I really use IE, and I have never tried firefox. I liked Linux a lot back when I used it (I was a pre-1.0 user), but it has been a while.

    I don’t understand why you think IE is insecure. While there have been security vulnerabilities in IE, I think we’ve done an excellent job of providing patches. I’ve never had spyware or anything else successfully attack me via IE.

    However, we recognized that many users don’t keep up with windows updates. In Windows XP SP2 things are even better. That includes a host of improvements to IE security. Now even users who don’t pay much attention to security are protected.

    If you haven’t tried using IE since XP SP2, I think you should give it a go.

    I hadn’t heard that we’re not updating IE any more. I don’t know why we would say that. I’m sure we will continue to update for any security vulnerabilities that appear. Beyond that, I’m not sure what updates you’re hoping for beyond security, and why you’d be pissed off to not get them.

  47. Shawn B. says:



    I hadn’t heard that we’re not updating IE any more. I don’t know why we would say that. I’m sure we will continue to update for any security vulnerabilities that appear. Beyond that, I’m not sure what updates you’re hoping for beyond security, and why you’d be pissed off to not get them.


    I think he’s referring to a new an update to a now 3-year antiquaited web browser, not security updates.

    What kinds of features would we like? better standards supports, bug fixes, additional features if need be, modernization with standards that have appeared since 2001… MS has annouced indeed that there won’t be a new version of IE (for example, IE7) except for Longhorn and won’t be seperately installable on previous versions of Windows.

    This means, that when we develop on Win2003/XP with VS.NET 2005–/++ we, by default, preview (in the designer) against the antiquainted IE6, but have to seperately open the site in a different browser to preview compatibility and quality. This means that we are initially designing our software against, what many would consider, an obsolete browser, and thats out-of-the-box. Personally, I like IE6, but I would like to see some modernization and standerdization and bug-fixes (beyond the status-quo security updates). SP2 was a good start, but not what everyone is looking for, compared against other alternatives.

    Anyway, this isn’t the topic at hand, but thought I’d answer your question.



  48. This is getting scary. Google is everywhere. Next thing you know they’ll be inside my head.


  49. I guess MSN Search does pull Google off.

  50. Google Desktop security issues as they apply to secure pages, such as those you view to do online banking or transactions, the issue of whether people are aware of exposing their private interests via search (ANY type of search), and someone who apparently works for Microsoft worrying that he’s getting so tied to Google that "Google is kicking our butt."