Notes from the field Bobby threatens to raise the roof

Notes from the field Bobby threatens to raise the roof

Well, I've told my editors that they can forget about sending me on the road for a few weeks, because I've had enough travelling for 1998. Comdex just about finished me off.

And what was it with the wigs? I have no explanation for this, but the whole show seemed to be populated by people wearing incredibly bad hairpieces. Come on guys, this is Comdex - not Wigstock.

So when is the next millennium?

I hear that one of the biggest US corporations is finally waking up to the Y2K threat. And that company is . . . Microsoft. It has apparently reorganised its Y2K operations, naming Don Jones as lead product manager. Jones used to be with Microsoft's internal IT department and did all the evaluation, fixing, and testing on its systems for Y2K compliance, which he says will be complete by the end of the year. Jones and others spent four and a half hours last week briefing Microsoft's Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer on how each product will do when the new millennium comes. One product that they've decided not to fix: the Barney doll and software.

Still on the Microsoft front, I'm hearing disturbing reports of a widespread telephone survey currently taking place. Its purpose is to establish people's views on how the whole MS-DOJ thing is going, and is asking, among other things, what people would think if Microsoft was broken up a la AT&T into several companies, each of which markets a different flavour of Windows. No indication has been given that Microsoft is responsible for the survey, but the questions are apparently phrased in a way that encourages people to speak positively of the company.

Meanwhile, the raid on SAP goes on. The latest defector is Mike di Gioja, who as head of SAP's human resources applications team helped the company challenge HR behemoth PeopleSoft. And who nabbed him?

The PeoplePeople, of course. The only flaw is that di Gioja has a contract tying him to SAP until July.

Rose still isn't returning my calls, but I have high hopes for this weekend: one of my senior copy editors - whom I've admired from afar for some time - is having a party this weekend and I'm invited. Could it be Love?

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