Satya Nadella: the new president in Microsoft’s Server & Tools Business

News today: we have a new president in the Server & Tools Business: Satya Nadella, a respected technical leader here at the company (as noted here: Satya moved from MBS to the Online Services Division to head up the engineering division there, which includes Bing, MSN and AdCenter (our advertising platform).

Satya Nadella hasn’t blogged in quite a while – I’ll suggest that he pick this back up ;)  You can check out his old posts at In particular I enjoyed one of his last posts on “making complex things simple” mantra, with observations from the book "The Laws of Simplicity" by John Maeda…

"I recently read The Laws of Simplicity by John Maeda. He has a cool web site as well. In the Dynamics group there is a lot of passion around this subject.

"John’s first rule – REDUCE: Simplicity through thoughtful reduction…strikes me as the most critical, when it comes to software design.

"I remember going to for my first meeting with the technical team at Navision before the acquisition. Their entire presentation was around how little code they have in their application. Mind you this was before we had settled on price!!

"This spirit of “minimalism” has helped us a ton as we have looked to evolve our apps and make them modern both in terms of user experience, runtime infrastructure and design time tools."

This reminds me of another discussion: Tony Scott, our CIO, asked Steve Ballmer (as noted on the Microsoft CIO Network site) about the biggest lessons he has learned over the ten years Steve has been CEO.

"… there’s a quote from a college basketball coach who just died here in the U.S., a guy named John Wooden, who was the coach at UCLA for many years.  But his writing on this sort of stands out to me.  He used to tell his players, "Be quick, but don’t hurry."  In our business more than any, you’ve got to be quick, but don’t hurry.  You can hurry things and you get a bad outcome if you try to rush, rush, either half-baked, not forward-looking enough.  But if you just take your time, you’re slow, you’re not in the market, you’re going to fail too.  And so really being thoughtful about — it doesn’t mean — there’s no implied algorithm of how you be quick but don’t hurry, but I know that a lot of the bad decisions I made, I made when I did hurry or when I took too much time to make a decision.  One or the other.  And so those are sort of my principles that I’ve learned.  I mean, I can also tell you I’ve learned a lot of things from specific projects."


Tags: announcements, Microsoft, Windows Server.

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