Kevin Warnock

Entrepreneurship, ideas and more

Archive for the ‘Microsoft Word’ tag

The story of the Microsoft IPO, as told by Fortune

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Fortune Magazine cover from 1986 featuring Microsoft IPO

Fortune Magazine cover from 1986 featuring Microsoft IPO

Inside the Deal That Made Bill Gates $350,000,000 is the title of a story by Fortune that covers what happened behind the scenes with the initial public offering of stock in Microsoft. Yes, that was in 1986, but these kinds of stories are not commonly ever made public, to my knowledge, so I thought I would make note of it here. I certainly learned something. For example, Microsoft, Oracle and Sun all went public within days of each other. Wow.

I remain a big believer in Microsoft, and I use Visual Studio, Windows Server, SQL Server and their Office software to run my company’s website, gOffice. Microsoft’s products are unfairly derided, in my view. Sure, I have my unhappy moments with their products a few times a year. But no other company makes an office suite as rich and genuinely powerful as Office. There is no way to substitute any other programs for Word and Excel for really serious work, because the macro language in Word and Excel lets you do almost anything. Online office products are terrible by comparison, including my company’s own gOffice product. Microsoft has thousands of smart people working on this stuff constantly, and it shows. Sure, the products could be better, but they’re already quite good today.

I think Microsoft will be around longer than Google.

Google doesn’t hold the monopoly power afforded Microsoft by its ownership of Office and to a lesser extent, Windows. People other than advertisers and website owners can stop using all of Google’s products without too much pain. But who can not use Excel for serious corporate work with others?

I recognize these are remarkably unpopular positions to take, but my job here is to tells things as I see them, not recite the popular viewpoint.

By the way, Microsoft considers gOffice a ‘competitor.’ I find this humorous given our tiny market position relative to theirs, but it is nice to see your company name in Microsoft’s 10K annual report for the most recent 5 years in a row. Don’t believe me? Look it up on the Microsoft website here.

gOffice has been depressingly and uncharacteristically quiet for years now, but all that will change this year, and I have modest but wildly realistic plans to revive the brand and product. Stay tuned.

One final crazy point: I think the market value of Facebook will eclipse that of Google and Microsoft, but probably only temporarily. Facebook has a tremendous network effect advantage that will be tough to break, and people really can’t substitute any other site for Facebook, since that’s the only site where all your friends are nearly certain to be.

Friend me on Facebook at to help prove the market power Facebook holds.

Written by Kevin Warnock

March 20th, 2011 at 5:00 am

gOffice for iPhone makes it on

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The website of CBS News published a short review of gOffice for iPhone today.

gOffice for iPhone is the first word processor for the Apple iPhone. It’s a very simple web app, but it does create genuine high quality Microsoft Word output, since the app functions by running a real copy of Microsoft Word on a Windows 2003 web server in a datacenter.

gOffice for iPhone was launched 7/7/07. I personally programmed this web app.

Famous tech blogger Robert Scoble wrote about this app on his blog, which got the app a lot of attention.

Written by Kevin Warnock

September 7th, 2007 at 11:00 pm