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Old Jan 10, 2013, 02:33 PM   #51
koruki
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Funny as I read this article, I have the track Outro - M83 playing from Cloud Atlas playing. Got me thinking of Steve Jobs effects in the future of silicon valley.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 03:16 PM   #52
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Do not simply look at HP's consumer products and think that is the extent of their talent and products. HP has an enormous Enterprise catalog and service sector. Thats where the real money is for them and where their real quality work is put in. I love Apple products but if I had to pick something else for the server farm, it would most likely be HP. I have thoroughly enjoyed their products and support.
Agree 100%. Just about all of their consumer products get a host of complaints (typically software/crapware related). However, I have a 2 LaserJets from a local university. They are the best printers I have ever worked with.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 03:23 PM   #53
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For some reason, I find that comparison completely absurd.
Some would say Steve was being a d!ck. Mark, on the other hand, couldn't control his d!ck. So kinda the same?
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 04:22 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by samcraig View Post
It's been known for awhile now



I don't believe theirs a "movement" in any such regard. I think, like with any person, place, thing - there are people that have differing opinions. That doesn't make them hateful or whatnot.
I guess you don't read the comments here on MacRumors or C|net, two of the biggest anti-Apple sites on the Internet in terms of user comments. There are no differing opinions, it's pure hate, pure vitriol, pure delusion.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 04:27 PM   #55
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 07:17 PM   #56
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I believe Steve Jobs' idea of HP being important to Silicon Valley was not in terms of technology or innovation but as a spiritual leader. In that sense, I do agree with Jobs' sentiment but otherwise HP is a zombie company kept alive by the voodoo of branding and market positioning protectionism ala Walmart. That strategy worked for Walmart and Costco's successes but I don't think it really works for tech.

I was with HP in their alleged "cash cow" enterprise software & services division (TSG) before Hurd's departure. None of us had wanted to work for HP - we were all acquired in, some had even left HP previously following the Mercury software acquisition. Before my product team all left within about a 9 month span, my coworkers and I were all in agreement that HP was doomed under Hurd's leadership. Hurd was also responsible for acquiring EDS after Opsware - both are basically failures under HP (but both were middling or shaky before HP bought them at inflated prices - Palm was the RIM of those years almost too). EDS has been a multi-billion writedown nearly the entire value of its acquisition cost. There is nothing HP's acquired in the past decade I can name that's helped the company improve growth in the manner the execs and program managers have outlined. HP is a Frankenstein monster company where maybe promising technology goes to die a life of utter mediocrity. Not exactly the sort of pattern that Google had to get Adsense. Good enterprise companies tend to buy promising companies cheaply and get business value several times the cost of the acquisition - HP's record is the opposite in the past decade (Compaq was a merger).

I'm not the usual disgruntled ex-employee either here - I wasn't laid off like so many unfortunate ex-employees. In fact, our software product was growing at 150%+ YoY growth and cited internally as an example of what they were hoping to see in the whole division. It was fantastically easy to sell in its market vertical, and we still had good, motivated engineers working on it. On the other hand, we all had our pay cut when the economy turned sour, but apparently they stayed that way once the recession was over (I left before that milestone happened). Can't say the same for other products though is the thing. Among customers, HP's reputation in enterprise software & services is completely terrible and exists to be the cheapest among the large vendors. In fact, one major reason why HP is typically sourced as a vendor for the US government is because their strategy has been to underbid everyone else. HP's overall compensation is below market average - don't look at Silicon Valley to compare though (that's where upper management exists primarily). Most of HP's rank and file employees aren't in Silicon Valley if they're in the US - look at Atlanta and Houston instead.

All of the above put HP in the market loser of tech companies for its segment. They do not see themselves competing with Google, Microsoft, Apple, or even Yahoo for employees - in software they consider themselves to be competing against tech dinosaurs like CA, BMC, Unisys, and defense contractors - value stock normally (hence, Hurd made good sense for an executive pick given his record at NCR). Market cap isn't everything when you're bleeding money and making write-downs.

While Apotheker wasn't the best fit necessarily for HP, the legacy left by Hurd's policies (the "strategy" that he had was pretty much textbook "cut costs and inflate stock value through short-term wins" that you could probably execute with a freshly minted 2nd-tier MBA grad) set up HP to fall even if he hadn't been taken out. HP's board of directors appointed Carly Fiorina before him, whom tried similar policies but just didn't have the political capital somehow, yet she tried to run for governor after her legendary firing? Wat?


I don't wish ill upon HP but they've consistently failed to do anything notably well for so long in an industry defined by innovation that it's difficult for a rational person to expect a recovery. Hence, their market cap seems to be worth less than what prominent marketing firms value the HP brand at. Even if a recovery happens, it'll probably be nearly a decade for it to recover back to where it was in 2005 given how unless they miraculously turn into the successor to Apple by redefining or creating a market.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 08:03 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Hakone
"Steve Jobs, we miss you."

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Originally Posted by saud0488 View Post
This is dumb
How is missing Steve Jobs dumb exactly??? I used to get excited about seeing one of Steve's keynotes "wow wonder what he's bringing out now". No offense to Tim, Johnny or Phil but they don't have that little twinkle in their eyes and that excited "I can't wait to show this" attitude that Steve had.

I definitely miss him. And I assure you, I am very far from being dumb.
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 08:42 PM   #58
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After Hurd came Apotheker, who wasted one year at enormous cost to the company. If they had hired me as CEO and paid me $100 million for playing Minesweeper the company would have done better. Just publishing the idea that HP could leave the PC hardware business cost them gazillions. (You can't go and tell people that you think about leaving a business. You either do it, or you don't do it. I would have been worth the money compared to Apotheker just by playing Minesweeper and not talking about leaving the PC business).
I worked at HP and tried to convince Apotheker to do something awesome with Palm/WebOS and spent my own time doing it. It went no where, the Palm guys I as in touch with all left, and I work for someone else now too, and am much happier about it. But Hurd had his downsides for sure, and I don't know if anything he would've done, if he ignored Palm the way Leo did, would've done any good for HP. Though I doubt he would've ever tried to split up the company, that was just idiocy. Additionally, I tried again to pass my ideas along to Meg Whitman and she poopooed them, I suspect since HP has this massive Microsoft partnership deal with Win 8 and junk like that they no longer have interest in doing stuff with WebOS, but I tell you what, HP's sales staff can't seem to get out of their own way lately and their stock numbers show it.

Really sux cause I liked to work for them when I was there, but it seems the time for burnishing HP's former glory is growing short.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 02:57 AM   #59
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I miss the guy. Never knew him personally. Do know his products, speeches, books.... I like his style of running and doing business. There should be more people like him in the world!
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 04:05 AM   #60
Subu
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I would have agreed with that had I not known how far HP has fallen since then. Since Hurd left, HP hired a software guy to run a hardware company, exited the smartphone and tablet markets (Palm purchased under Hurd) and threw away the $1.2 billion it cost to acquire them, flirted with exiting the PC business, fired the software guy, hired Meg Whitman as CEO who, as an HP board member approved the bonehead moves Apotheker made, laid off 27,000 employees after posting a profit decline of 31%, wrote off $8.8 billion from their purchase of Autonomy and increased the number of pay offs to 29,000.

I bet the HP board wishes everyday, check that, multiple times a day, that they didn't fire Hurd.
so one woman' complaint ...[god know how true that was] cost a company , cost the silicon valley and probably cost the world a third good mobile OS

Long live women's rights
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 04:17 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by djk29a View Post
.....but otherwise HP is a zombie company kept alive by the voodoo of branding and market positioning protectionism ala Walmart. That strategy worked for Walmart and Costco's successes but I don't think it really works for tech.

I was with HP in their alleged "cash cow" enterprise software & services division (TSG) before Hurd's departure. None of us had wanted to work for HP - we were all acquired in, some had even left HP previously following the Mercury software acquisition. ................

.......

what / who killed the "cash cow " ? = enterprise software & services division

- Oracle ?
- Apothekar ?
- Dell ?
- ...new technology changes ....

Because HP did not only get killed in their consumer tech biz, they also got killed in enterprise software & services ? right ?



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Old Jan 11, 2013, 04:40 AM   #62
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I was involved with HP since the 60s and always thought it a wonderful company. Had the honour of meeting David Packard twice, interviewed John Young a couple of times—I always remember his "we have no plan B" when talking about the company's move to RISC technology. More latterly had lunch with Lew Platt who was a real gentleman.

It all started to go wrong with Fiorina and the abandonment of the HP Way.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 07:36 AM   #63
djk29a
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Originally Posted by Subu View Post
what / who killed the "cash cow " ? = enterprise software & services division

- Oracle ?
- Apothekar ?
- Dell ?
- ...new technology changes ....
I used "cash cow" to mean that it's a myth - the business produced less than 5% of HP's total profit. HP's enterprise software portfolio primarily came from Mercury software and Peregrine Systems - both of which were acquired in the late 90s / early 2000s way before Hurd. Opsware was acquired during Hurd's reign as well as EDS - EDS was a huge write-down that's manifested now (customers were looking to dump EDS upon HP announcing the acquisition and were asking me for some guidance for MSPs of that scale). The way they "grew" the business basically was they charged customers more and more for services (consultants) they didn't need or got cheaply instead of paying 3x as much for a major technology consulting firm (EMC, Accenture, or even IBM). But the customers didn't want to keep the software itself typically because they were expensive to maintain (it was basically all completely outdated and prohibitively difficult to scale by the time the proof of concept had cleared and the sales guys had made their commissions).

Whatever money these companies were making after HP's had ownership for about a year or two tends to disappear. I wish I could make the sort of money these people in charge of mergers & acquisitions do for failing again and again. To be fair though, failure is the default for technology acquisitions in this space. Most of Silicon Valley tends to acquire companies that are growing rapidly though to capitalize upon momentum - none of the companies that were bought had that sort of quality to them.

The companies that think they compete against HP in the enterprise software realm aren't even Dell and Oracle like you mention - they're the ancient mainframe technology companies that I mentioned. Oracle hasn't lost its way like HP has. HP's heart has been hardware for a long time while Oracle's was software, and attempting to repeat the success of IBM from the mid-90s (IBM almost collapsed in the mid-90s and spun off its consumer hardware business successfully). From a business strategy perspective, HP has been a follower, not an innovator, and that's what they need to keep their head above water.

I suppose HP does have one sort of "enterprise" software that makes alright money that could be considered successful - OpenCall, which is used in almost every 911 call made in North America.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 09:17 AM   #64
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Just thinking about the possibility of Steve being right about the importance of HP to silicon valley is scary.
Considering HP is failing fairly quickly, I guess Steve knew something we all did not.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 10:09 AM   #65
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what / who killed the "cash cow " ? = enterprise software & services division
Their own stupidity.

To get the full picture, if you go back one-two decades, they had the worlds fastest processor (Alpha), used to leader in super computing sector and best clustering software which even IBM used to envy. Here are few thing they did to clean up.

-Killed Alpha tied up with Intel and sank 3+ Billion in Itanic.
-Killed Clustering software (Tru64/OpenVMS) tied up with Veritas for clustering file system. Never sold in large volume.
-Purchased Palm. 3 Billion down the drain. Killed it.
-Purchased Atonomy. 11 Billion down the drain.
-Hurd took the "invent" part out.
-Oracle put the final nail in highend server sector. Eventhough court ruled in favor of HP and Oracle has to support v12 on Itanium, damage is already done.
-PC is almost dead. Don't have a tablet.
-Not sure what is going on with printing division.
-Commodity server hardware sector is the only thing doing better. But because HP never seriously tried to port their highend software like ServiceGuard/MetroCluster/Continental Cluster, they have to depend on third party software to make the sale.

On top of it Meg supported Mitt Romney. While IBM CEO is partying at White House she is counting chickens.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 04:16 PM   #66
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As a side note I've often wondered what would happen to Agilents devices if Apple acquired them and added iOS to many of their instruments. We would enter into the age of smart DVM and O'Scopes with all sorts of apps. If there is one thing I hate about Agilent, and the other big instrument makers, is the unbundling of software enhancements and the general gouging for those enhancements. Imagine a DVM, or O'Scope API like the current APIs for things like the accelerometer on iOS devices.
Would certainly be interesting. My main experience with Agilent is for HPLC and other LC equipment. Compared to GE their software and customer support is a godsend. If anyone's ever ordered from GE or used an Akta... you know exactly what I'm talking about.
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