It was a busy day for Microsoft yesterday. A number of threads are starting to pull together into a single piece of cloth.
September 2nd: Microsoft acquires Teleo
September 9th: Microsoft’s Web Platform Under Construction (from the PDC)
September 20th: Microsoft Reorgs MSN into Platforms Group
And November 1, the MSN web services components are rebranded as the Windows Live platform.
The unfinished nature of much of the work suggests a strong similarity to December 7th 1995, as many others have commented. The fact that only Windows Live Mail, Live.com, Live Favorites, and Windows Live Safety Center are running really underscores that. This is the easy stuff. Who really needs another RSS reader at this point? And the idea that we’re all creating massive personal indexes of favorites is so… 1995. Where are the tags? Apparently the demo of Live Messenger really rocked. It sounds like an early instantiation of the many ideas being discussed around Voice 2.0. I would have liked to have seen that, and I can hardly wait for the beta.
In a lot of ways this isn’t reminiscent of December 7th 1995 Internet Day, though. At Internet Day, commitments were made to developers, and new APIs were rolled out. That didn’t happen here. True, Bill did talk about platforms. And when asked whether data would come out of Microsoft apps as well as being aggregated into them, he said that there’s no difference between syndicating out and syndicating in. It’s more than syndication which is needed, though, and I hope we see a lot more focus on the developer community.
I’m very hopeful, in fact. In particular, a Microsoft choice to open the Live Messenger presence cloud and identity mechanisms to other applications would create amazing opportunities.