FORMER DOCTOR EVIL at Microsoft, Steve 'I love this company' Ballmer, has changed his mind about Linux.
The major shareholder and basketball magnate famously described Linux as "a cancer" in the early noughties, but said at a recent dinner that the threat was "in the rear view mirror", according to Reuters.
In fact, Ballmer's stance has changed so much that he is said to have "loved" the recent announcement that Microsoft's SQL Server database will now come in a Linux-friendly version, and even emailed incumbent head of evil Satya Nadella to tell him so.
Ballmer did, however, reiterate that he doesn't believe that Microsoft's accounting practice of not properly reporting revenue for software, hardware and cloud enterprise transparently is appropriate.
He first pointed this out on a shareholder call last year when he also said that the world would be a lot better if there was more Android compatibility in Windows devices rather than trying to reinvent the wheel from behind a moving sports car.
Ballmer's tenure was marred by significant drops in the value of Microsoft stock, which recovered only when Nadella was in place. He dismissed this, however, as being down to a change in personality rather than leadership. "Personality change leads to market perception change," he said.
Ballmer was always a bit excitable, and his temper was raised on the aforementioned earnings call, but he's apparently a lot more chilled now and that could be down to his new hobby. He's taken up yoga.
"You get a lot of time to work out, meditate, take it easy," he said. "It's a wonderful thing to do."
We wonder what Ballmer makes of the current chapter in the Updategate saga which has seen personal customers plagued by a nagware payload hidden in a security update, and a U-turn on the decision not to send adware propaganda to corporate customers. µ
Plus the cost of ambition as moonshots eat into the coffers
Spoiler alert: it's probably VeriSign
Did we say cuts off? We meant traps them inside their own home