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File under ‘Duh’: Microsoft meeting to stress software

Today is Microsoft’s big company meeting at Safeco Field. The usual occupants, the Mariners, are off doing battle on the road–not too successfully—against the Yankees. But I digress.

Insiders say that 20,000 employees have signed up—the event usually takes 14,000. The bigger number no doubt due to the fact this is seen as something of a Bill Gates swan song

Aside from Gates, COO Kevin Turner, chief software architect Ray Ozzie are on tap to yak. Steve Ballmer will go last so attendees will somehow leave fired up and drained simultaneously.

Expect a lot more of the “people ready” message and yet another “Surfaces” demo. Insiders day Gates’ prime message will be about software being at the center of Microsoft’s business.

No kidding.

(Although if he doesn’t delve into the services delivery module, expect a bunch of speculation that the whole SaaS push is being re-evaluated.)

Barbara Darrow, a Boston-area journalist, can be reached at badarrow@comcast.net. 

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