I’ve been talking to coworkers about what I learned in Silicon Valley last week and I swear that venture capitalist Rick Segal is listening in. Particularly his second observation. That’s going to be the hardest for Microsoft to compete with because of how we setup our business units internally (and because we hire lots of entrepreneurial people from other companies that think deeply about how to build businesses). We don’t grok Google’s ability to ship stuff that won’t make them any money (or why they’d do that). Like Orkut, or even Google’s Maps (they don’t yet have any advertising on them). Microsoft is up against a brilliant Google strategy — one that’s aimed at disrupting all sorts of things that came before and one that’s aimed at our weaknesses (and at others too, all at the same time). Internally here at Microsoft each team has its own business interests to look after and considers itself accountable to shareholders to show same. We’re very decentralized. Google looks at its business holistically, not part by part like Microsoft does – it is very centralized compared to how Microsoft is run. Google tells its engineers to go and come up with cool services without thinking about monetization strategies — they say they’ll figure that out later. That’s disruptive.