Developer

Is Microsoft's legacy holding it back from being more innovative?

Microsoft has a huge legacy issue; even the slightest mistake in breaking backwards compatibility can make millions of people unable to work. Do you think Microsoft's legacy is holding it back from being more innovative?

Thanks to its continued success, Microsoft has an installed user base that is measured in the hundreds of millions. Between Windows and Office, I am sure that there are well over a billion licensed copies of Microsoft applications out there, and each product line has at least three versions that are supported at any given time.

Clearly, Microsoft has a huge legacy issue; even the slightest mistake in breaking backwards compatibility can make millions of people unable to work. I suspect that the need to not break existing applications, combined with not being able to "move the cheese" on the users, is severely hampering Microsoft's ability to innovate or do radically new things. What do you think?

J.Ja

Disclosure of Justin's industry affiliations: Justin James has a working arrangement with Microsoft to write an article for MSDN Magazine. He also has a contract with Spiceworks to write product buying guides.

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Justin James is the Lead Architect for Conigent.

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