Today I had breakfast with Steve Ballmer. Very cool. He is a great guy and was incredibly thoughtful – as you might expect – across a wide range of topics. He was in Boston for a series of important initiatives and was gracious to sit with a few of us for breakfast.
There were a couple of items from our discussion which I thought were particularly notable:
- Steve was very excited about the future of scientific computing which he thought was particularly strong in New England
- Natural language interfaces and entertainment/gaming are very big near-term initiatives for Microsoft
- One of his overarching themes is the transformation from a “one screen, one server” paradigm to “three screens and the cloud”
- Steve warned us not to overlook the enterprise space
- He thought hospitals in Southeast Asia were particularly efficient given the prevalence of the “medical tourist” industry
- Steve was excited about personal health devices as the approach to populate all of the medical data required to drive a connected health model
Microsoft has done great things recently for the innovation eco-system in Boston – I kid you not. The Microsoft New England Research and Development (NERD) center in Kendall Square has been a great contributor to the resurgence of vitality in the local market. If you have not seen the space, make a point of stopping by and hanging out.
The conversation over breakfast was so compelling I am not even sure what we ate.