Microsoftian Ponders Turning Tables On The Press

John Montgomery muses “Every day members of the press get to write about their interactions with Microsoft -- often interactions with me. What would happen if I blogged about my interactions with them?”

Naturally, as a potential target for his evaluations, I’m against it.

Actually, I [wish]{style="font-style:italic"} there were more criticism of the software development press (as in critiquing, not as in “MSDN sucks because it doesn’t cover Linux!” or the knee-jerk reaction from one of John’s commentors that “The press is a bunch of liberal hacks!” – a criticism that really doesn’t seem very relevant to a discussion of InfoWorld, eWeek, and DDJ). You would be amazed at how rare it is to receive a thoughtful consideration of an article, or an editorial theme, or a direction. For instance, those who read my blog know how much I love the Tablet PC. Although I don’t write about the Tablet PC very much in my SD Times column, when I have, I’ve been over-optimistic about its reception. But no one’s ever written a letter to the Editor saying “Come on, Tablet PCs won’t dominate laptops! They’re too expensive, there’s no software, and they don’t have the marketshare to support independent development!” Too bad.

But what a lot of people don’t understand about the press, even the very insular world of the SD press, is that certain things that look stupid are part of the process. For instance, I had a conversation with Jack Greenfield last month about Software Factories where I pushed him to define what he [undoubtedly]{style="font-style:italic"} considered fundamental concepts while he clearly wanted the conversation to be at a higher level. I suspect that if he were to blog my astuteness, I’d come in fairly low. But I’m very comfortable with the questions I asked him, because industry-wide advances in software productivity don’t come from grandiose schemes, they come from details. Similarly, if I were to discuss COmega, I’d definitely circle around the details of “chords” quite a bit, while another journalist might breezily accept “Cù makes concurrent programming easy!” [ … snip an entire rant on concurrency, type systems, and other insanely important areas where there’s a huge gap between platitudes, academic theory, and industry practices…]