Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft’

Bold Predictions from Silicon Valley

Friday, September 9th, 2011

Is Microsoft doomed to fail? Does the LinkedInIPO signal a new bubble? Is Google  the model of success? Silicon Valley entrepreneur, writer, and professor, Steve Blanks, makes a number of bold assertions about the state of tech-based businesses in this Business Insider article.

For more information about Steve Blanks, visit his website.

Interview with Judy Estrin

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Judy Estrin, CEO of JLabs, is the co-founder of seven technology companies.  She was the Chief Technology Officer of Cisco Systems from 1998 to 2000 and has served on the boards of Rockwell and Sun Microsystems. Currently, she is on the Board of Directors of the Walt Disney Company and FedEx, the advisory board of Stanford’s School of Engineering and Bio-X interdisciplinary program, and the University of California President’s Science and Innovation Advisory Board. Most recently, she is the author of Closing the Innovation Gap (McGraw-Hill, 2008). We met with Ms. Estrin in Menlo Park, California to explore her thoughts on educating and managing for entrepreneurship and innovation.

Kaizen: What was it like growing up in a high-powered science-and-engineering family?

Estrin: That’s hard to answer because I don’t know anything but growing up steeped in science. A lot of the trips we took during the summer were to academic scientific conferences throughout the world. As I talk about in the preface of Closing the Innovation Gap, it wasn’t just that my parents were both academics, but both were Ph.D.s in electrical engineering — it was quite rare at the time for a woman to have a Ph.D. in electrical engineering. And so I just grew up in an environment where I was surrounded by academics and scientists.


“Microsoft’s Creative Destruction”

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

Microsoft was working on e-books and tablet PCs a decade ago. So why did it never get around to releasing them? Why, with so many intelligent and talented employees, is it falling behind Apple in innovation? Dick Brass, who was a Microsoft vice president for seven years, explains how Microsoft’s lack of systems that support innovation lead to risk-avoidance and internal struggles that crush great ideas before they ever make it into the marketplace.

Read the article at the New York Times.

What Have Venture Capitalists Really Done for Innovation?

Monday, September 28th, 2009

MoneyAn article by Vivek Wadhwa at TechCrunch explains why “VCs follow innovation, they don’t lead.”

The National Venture Capital Association claims in their Venture Impact report that companies like Microsoft and Google “…would not exist today without the funding and guidance provided during their early stages by venture capitalists.”

But what about the entrepreneurs who, as Wadhwa puts it, “risk their life savings, max out their credit cards and put their families in the back seat?”

Read the article here.

Interview with Anil Singh-Molares

Monday, October 27th, 2008

singh-molares-webAnil Singh-Molares is CEO of EchoMundi, an international consulting, research and product development company based in Bellevue, Washington. Prior to founding EchoMundi, he worked for twelve years at the Microsoft Corporation in Redmond, where he was Senior Director of Vendor Relations and a recipient of the Microsoft Achievement Award. He is also currently a member of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. We met with Mr. Singh-Molares in Bellevue.

Kaizen: You are a successful businessman—yet as an undergraduate you majored in Philosophy and English Literature. That might seem a surprising background. Has your undergraduate education been relevant to your success in business?

Singh-Molares: Yes, absolutely. Philosophy in particular. English certainly gave me the ability to express myself succinctly and technically. But philosophy taught me how to think and taught me to appreciate that there are many sides to an argument, but that you have to make some judgment about what you think is the correct judgment. It has to be well-supported, it has to be well researched, well thought-out, but it should be grounded in common sense. And that’s why I, like you, am a big fan of the Greeks, Plato in particular, and Aristotle as well. So, it’s been very helpful.