Microsoft Fires CIO

The position of chief information officer is demanding by definition. It requires a masterful blend of technological knowledge, business acumen and political savvy. When you hold that position for the world's largest technology firm, it must be even more demanding.

Details are scant, but we do know that Microsoft has just fired its CIO. The official reason was a "violation of company policies," according to a written statement released by Microsoft. Until the company names a permanent CIO, General Manager Shahla Aly and Vice President Alain Crozier will cover Scott's duties.

Scott served as Microsoft's CIO since joining the company in 2005. He held the same position at General Electric.

Are you on the CIO track? What elements of your skill set are you working on to move up the food chain? Do you work closely with the CIO of your organization? Let me know at llow@redmondmag.com.

Fill 'Er Up? Check the Oil? Check the Map?
Google is coming to the rescue of guys who're loath to ask directions. Now, besides choosing between regular or premium and debit or credit, gas station customers will soon be able to check directions.

In a partnership with Gilbarco Veeder-Root, a company that manufactures and distributes gas pumps, Google will provide access to its mapping service at gas stations. Customers will be able to check a small screen for directions and scroll through local spots, including restaurants and hotels. After selecting their destination, drivers will be able to print out directions along with their receipt.

That kind of added service should help take the sting out of skyrocketing gas prices. The mapping service should initially be available in 3,500 locations as early as next month.

What do you think about being able to check directions as you fill up? Google is getting into the phone business and now the gas station business -- savvy spreading of its talons or slowly spreading itself too thin? Find me at llow@redmondmag.com and let me know.

Sun Shines, But Not Too Brightly
Sun Microsystems just reported an $89 million profit for the first quarter, which marks its fourth consecutive profitable quarter.

While profits are certainly better than losses, investors were disappointed it wasn't a higher margin. Still, the corporate cost-cutting initiatives Sun announced earlier this year seem to be taking effect. Last year, Sun checked in with a $56 million loss for the first quarter.

Of Sun's worldwide operations, India and China showed the strongest growth. Domestic sales are somewhat lackluster. Sun executives are focusing on its higher-end products, identity management software and its Solaris 10 operating system as the greatest revenue generators.

Do you have any Sun systems in your organization? Let me know at llow@redmondmag.com.

About the Author

Lafe Low is the editorial liaison for ECG Events.

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