A disturbance in the force
I sense a disturbance in the force similar to what I felt back in the 90’s when Computer Associates was riding a bit to high and of course the dot-coms were out of control. Today the disturbance seems to be emanating from less then healthy competition between some of the big tech players like Oracle, HP, Google Apple and Microsoft. Competition is good and I think we have seen some healthy competition between Apple, Microsoft and Google. Oracle and HP have been had been partners more then competitors. So why do I feel a disturbance in today’s technology force. The competitions and partnerships seem to be moving toward war and law suits are starting to spring up. Reminiscent of EDS suing CA back in the early 90’s and a sense that CA could do what ever they wanted. That turned into SEC problems and CA has never been the same.
I think the more aggressive competition between Google, Apple and Microsoft just stems from how critical it is to control this new era of mobile and social computing. But I think the evil that has been surfacing from HP and Oracle in recent years is where the disturbance is coming from. We can point to the passing of Hewlett & Packard’s control to HP’s problems, and unfortunately greed is probably the root of that change. And I think Oracle’s Ellison is reengaging for another run at tech emperor. Larry has always been arrogant and powerful, but I think the change comes from his main nemesis, Microsoft falling on hard times. I’m not sure why Oracle would ever mess with the advantageous relationship with HP, but it sure has gotten ugly. From hiring Mark Hurd to dumping Itanium development, Oracle and HP sure do have a strained relationship. And yes, Oracle’s acquisition of Sun is a problem. So how is this going to play out. Some talk about another tech bubble similar to the dot-com bust in 2001. And there are some similarities, but my caution would be thrown at these companies who seem to have thrown out integrity in favor of greed. Be careful, giants do fall.