Liberty vs Passport (read: Ballmer vs McNealy)
by Rael Dornfest
Scott McNealy and Steve Ballmer took to the stage (separately, mind you) at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2001, continuing their all-too-familiar game of dis and dismiss.
Ballmer: "I think the Sun [Liberty] thing has absolutely zero probability of mattering to the world...and that's my non-emotional view of the topic." McNealy: ".NOT, er, .NET -- there are _so_ many terms out there."
Responding to Ballmer's claims that Microsoft was not invited to participate in the Liberty Alliance, McNealy countered they were indeed invited by United Airlines' CIO Eric Dean but "may have some email down situation or whatever." As for AOL's conspicuous absence from the Liberty roster, McNealy's response was bumbled avoidance at best.
News.com video has the blow-by-blow.