It's amazing to read about this story and see the different spins that certain groups have about Robert's depature. But I think the best way to read about it is to to check out Robert's blog. No simple story, Robert is balancing the needs of his family, the demands of his career, and his own personal goals.
Robert has long been one of my heros. I looked forward to his participation on the internal Microsoft Blogger alias as much as I enjoyed his posts. I just want to share Robert's comments to the alias this morning:
"You are all the best.
The power of blogging is just starting.
Just pay attention to the customers and everything else will work its way out.
The way this story spread internationally within hours demonstrates the PR power you all hold in your hands.
Use it for good, not for evil."
I'm not sure that there is an heir apparent but I know there are over 3000 other Microsoft bloggers to help carry on Robert's tradition. Cheers Robert and best wishes for you and your family.