Just Say No to Microsoft an Interesting Read

    January 8, 2006

Publishers occassionally ask me whether they can send me books so that I can review them.

Increasingly I’m turning them down (it makes me feel guilty when I don’t write about them).

But, I met the publisher, William Pollock, of NoStarch Press at BarCamp over the summer and liked him and his books sounded interesting, even if they were mostly about tech topics I wasn’t that interested in.

Anyway, they asked a while back if I’d like some books and I said sure. So, today when I get back from CES I found one waiting for me titled “Just Say No to Microsoft.”

Now, on first reading, you might think I should be offended by such a book. After all, the basic premise of the book is to live life without Microsoft. Switch to a Mac or a Linux machine and all that. The subtitle of the book is “How to Ditch Microsoft And Why It’s Not as Hard As You Think.”

But, I find that I learn more from contrarian approaches than from the “everything is hunky dory” approach and this one hasn’t disappointed yet.

Every Microsoft engineer and product planner should read it.

Why? It’s a great specification for where our products fall short and demonstrates very well how our products and company are being perceived on the street.

If that was the extent of it (to be a bible to people who hate Microsoft, and to be a spec for Microsofties for how to improve our products) then that’d be a fine reason to have this book, but there’s more.

I actually am learning how to do stuff on Microsoft’s products that I didn’t know before. There’s a ton of tips in this book about how to use Microsoft stuff. Which, is sorta funny, given the title and premise for the book.

Oh, and John Dvorak says he isn’t getting paid attention to by Microsoft’s PR folks anymore in the foreward. Oh, John, I thought you were a blogger now and Christopher Coulter keeps telling me not to pay so much attention to bloggers (and particularly to ones that don’t seem to write much about tech)! Just kidding, you know you can just write me an email if you aren’t getting good info from us anymore. I’ll go shoot a video and get all the answers you need.

And, to Tony Bove, you never expected an endorsement for your book from a Microsoft employee, did you?

Robert Scoble is the founder of the Scobleizer blog. He works as PodTech.net’s Vice President of Media Development.

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