Bill tries to rally the troops — again

The hot topic on various tech websites and blogs is Microsoft’s attempt to rally its troops and attack the new Web services market — an attempt that comes 10 years almost to the day after Microsoft tried to turn its giant ship around and get religion with respect to the Internet, a campaign that began with the famous “Internet tidal ave” memo from Bill Gates. This one begins with two memos: one from Bill G. and one from his new chief technology officer Ray Ozzie, one of the co-creators of IBM’s Lotus Notes and co-founder of Groove Networks. Tech guru Dave Winer managed to get hold of the two memos and has posted the full text of them on his website.

They make for very interesting reading — even if, as Dave and John Battelle suspect, they were written with the expectation that they would be leaked (Shelley at Burningbird thinks so too and Good Morning Silicon Valley says it might as well have been a press release.). If nothing else, the memos make it clear that Ray Ozzie is the new visionary at Microsoft, as Nicholas Carr points out on his blog. Om Malik says that despite the vision, Microsoft still appears to be looking in the rear-view mirror and ignoring the move to mobile devices or non-PC devices in their new vision. Robert Scoble says Microsofties are calling the Bill G. memo the “birthday memo” in honour of their supreme leader recently turning 50. Happy birthday, Bill.

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