Drop the Ballmer | Tech Talk Today 46

Drop the Ballmer | Tech Talk Today 46

Steve Ballmer officially steps down as a board member at Microsoft, we speculate about the real motivations. Facebook Tests “Satire” Tag & are people really being fined for the Ice Bucket challenge?

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Steve Ballmer steps down as board member at Microsoft

After leaving his position as CEO of Microsoft a year ago, Steve Ballmer has still held a position as a member of the board of directors for the company. Now, he is leaving the board, explaining why in a letter to fresh Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “I have become very busy,” Ballmer explains. “I see a combination of Clippers, civic contribution, teaching and study taking up a lot of time.” Despite his departure, the former-CEO is still invested in the company’s success, and he spent most of the letter encouraging Nadella and giving advice. Nadella shot back a supportive, equally optimistic response, promising that Microsoft will thrive in “the mobile-first, cloud-first world.”

It’s not surprising that former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer abruptly gave up his board seat some six months after leaving the top job, and the move should help cement the regime and strategy of his successor Satya Nadella, according to several industry observers.

“I think it’s a classy move by Ballmer,” said analyst Frank Scavo, managing partner of IT consulting firm Strativa. “It shows Ballmer has confidence in Nadella, allowing Nadella to move forward without worrying about what Ballmer thinks.”

Ballmer may have also been smarting from decisions Nadella has made, such as the 14 percent staff reduction last month that focused largely on workers who came aboard through Microsoft’s $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia’s mobile phone business. That deal was driven vigorously by Ballmer, who reportedly struggled to gain buy-in on it from Microsoft’s board.

Microsoft board meetings may not have been especially fun for Ballmer anyway, according to Rob Enderle, principal analyst at Enderle Group. “Once you step down as CEO like Steve did, being on the board and being reminded that you had to step down is like coming to a party after you’ve been asked to leave it.”

Some large institutional investors may be glad to see Ballmer leave the party for good, according to Wes Miller, research analyst with Directions on Microsoft. These players “would like to move beyond the era of Steve Ballmer,” he said. “They’ll view this as a checkpoint for the new Microsoft.”

Facebook Tests “Satire” Tag To Avoid Confusion On News Feed – Slashdot

“In an attempt to keep you from having to explain to your crazy relatives that despite what they read, Vice President Biden *didn’t* get a grow light delivered to the White House under a fake name, Facebook is testing a “satire” tag on news feeds. A Facebook representative issued the following statement to Ars Technica: “We are running a small test which shows the text ‘[Satire]’ in front of links to satirical articles in the related articles unit in News Feed. This is because we received feedback that people wanted a clearer way to distinguish satirical articles from others in these units.”

California Fining ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ Participants for Wasting Water

In Los Angeles, which is living through its worst drought in generations, the Department of Water & Power and the Police Department have long been cracking down on unnecessary water usage.

At first there were simple restrictions, such as limiting the watering of landscapes, boats, aircrafts etc. But now the “Water Police” have targeted people participating in the Ice Bucket Challenge, a viral campaign meant to raise awareness for the rare neurological disorder Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

“We’re saving a lot of time since people are posting their crime directly to social media,” said Chip Masters, the president of the Department of Water and power. “One day, my entire Facebook feed was filled with these attention hungry morons pouring gallons of ice water over themselves. I couldn’t believe it.

As of Aug. 15, any person or persons who are participating in the ice bucket challenge will be fined $500, as part of the Water Conservation Act.
Within seconds, Masters saw a USC sorority post a video of the entire 50-person chapter standing on their house steps in bikinis, as they took turns pouring roughly 5 gallons of ice cubes over their heads. The video is about 20 minutes long as each sister goes on to nominate their “BFFAEAEs (Best Friends For Ever And Ever).”

The sorority was fined $500 a person for their Ice bucket challenge video. Totaling in about $25,000 in fines, roughly a third of the tuition for the University. The sorority is expected to have wasted over 250 gallons of water, which is almost enough to fill a hot tub.

22 People Who Should Have Definitely Not Taken The Ice Bucket Challenge

By now you’ve seen it EVERYWHERE. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has taken over the internet, spreading awareness (and raising millions) for ALS research. It’s great.

But that doesn’t mean things always go as planned.

Ignition: A Social Retro Gaming OS for the Raspberry Pi by Alex Stubbs — Kickstarter

Ignition is a Social Retro Gaming “OS” for the Pi with features such as Gaming Achievements, Gamer Profiles, Online Play, more..

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