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Gates Discusses The Future Of Software

David Utter
Expert Author
Published: 2005-05-19

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The Chief Software Architect, philanthropist, and author also discussed his new book at the Microsoft CEO Summit.

Mr. Gates, author of two previous books, has a third book in the works, but no details have been forthcoming about it yet.

And that's ok. The Microsoft chairman had over a hundred CEOs on hand to listen to him discuss other topics. Like the future of software. Specifically, Microsoft software.

The next version of the company's signature productivity suite, called Office 12, will debut late in 2006. That's the same timeframe the Longhorn 64-bit operating system should be available as well.

Microsoft envisions a New World of Work for future office workers. Said Mr. Gates: "I really think we are at a big change point in terms of how we think of information.

"We're really moving from having provided tools that were really great at the individual level, if you wanted to author a document or a spreadsheet or a presentation, and we have in Microsoft Office some wonderful tools."

Mr. Gates discussed linking products like Excel to back-end data, not a surprising topic in light of Microsoft partnering with SAP on just this issue. He mentioned pivot tables, a powerful Excel feature, and how many businesses haven't been able to get it to talk with the back-end data that can make those tables truly powerful.

There is a great deal of information, to the point where it overloads people, a point Mr. Gates noted. But he thinks it is really information under load.

"(Y)ou have to seek the information out, it's not in the right form, it's still split across different systems, and as soon as you hit any boundary, even a division boundary, not to mention a company boundary, you get real loss of information there," he said.

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About the Author:
David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.

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