viernes, febrero 01, 2008

Microsoft avanza sobre Yahoo: dos opiniones

De la oferta de Microsoft sobre Yahoo se ha hablado suficiente; aquí se anotan dos observaciones críticas sobre la posible absorción: las de Dare Obasanjo y la de Scott Rosenberg.
El primero más bien reproduce un comentario en, poniendo el acento en la importante contribución de Yahoo a Open Source, que será seguramente reemplazada por tecnología Microsoft:

A consolidation of the Microsoft and Yahoo networks could shift a massive amount of infrastructure from open source technologies to Microsoft platforms.Microsoft said that "eliminating redundant infrastructure and duplicative operating costs will improve the financial performance of the combined entity." Yahoo has been a major player in several open soruce projects. Most of Yahoo's infrastructure runs on FreeBSD, and the lead developer of PHP, Rasmus Lerdorf, works as an engineer at Yahoo. Yahoo has also been a major contributor to Hadoop, an open source technology for distributed computing. Data Center Knowledge [] has more on the infrastructure implications.

Scott Rosenberg, por su parte, destaca dos aspectos: por un lado, la probable aniquilación de la fuerza innovadora de Yahoo; por otro lado, la confirmación por parte de Microsoft de que su propio proyecto de construír un negocio online:

To understand what the takeover would mean for Yahoo, just look at the fate of the previous company to end up in this circumstance. When Netscape, then a dominant portal site and purveyor of a declining but still widely used Web browser, got bought by AOL a decade ago, we heard all the usual pieties about the strength of the brand and the value of its franchise. But AOL’s acquisition of Netscape meant its doom: the remaining talent headed for the exits, and its assets were quickly cannibalized. AOL itself entered another disastrous merger a couple of years later, and today it is a shadow of its former importance — while Netscape isn’t even a phantom.

Similarly, if Microsoft wins Yahoo, you will see most of Yahoo’s smart people depart, and its customers gradually parceled out to attempt to bolster Microsoft’s ever-faltering efforts to build an online business. Much of the talk in the business press surrounding this deal will be about Yahoo’s ad business, and it’s true that Microsoft will find it useful, but it’s hard to see what new power a combined Microsoft and Yahoo business will have to challenge Google that the two companies didn’t have as separate entities.

For Microsoft, this move is a final admission of the utter failure of the company’s effort to build an online business for itself over the past decade — in services, advertising or content. Winning Yahoo would surely bolster Microsoft in this area in the short term. But in the long term, these efforts at lashing together two failures in hopes of sparking a success have never prospered. For Google, the target of Redmond’s chess move, there is really no danger here. Google today needs to worry about the drag on its stock from the broader market troubles, and the drain on its brainpower by the lure of new startups. Microhoo is hardly a threat.

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