Monday, September 29, 2008

Farewell to a star.

Yes, he was a real star, but not only in Hollywood, he was greater as a man, and he was the man my mother in law was in love apart from his husband, and without my father in law being jealous (he also admired Newman). I will not include here his biography, I just leave here the link to Wikipedia.
We will miss you.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

John DellVorak attacks again

I've been reading this funny story written by John Dvorak ( or DellVorak from now on).
John, in a past post in my blog I asked you to stop having those things for breakfast, but I see you must have doubled the dose instead...
Please, John, don't oblige us to do the same we had to do in the past when you started saying nonsenses about Apple. I still have Jobso sore about you, and he just offered me to send Moshe again to pick you up, you know what I mean...

Maybe we, Sun, should enter in the consumer market -and not only with the Blu-Ray and Java-, as I read in an article in the blogosphere or in the private jet magacine, I'm not sure, I'll comment on that someday around here, but this is just ridiculous.

It is true that I always wanted Sun turning in a more "Dellized" company, as you can read in previous posts, but this means that customers could buy the iron (the small one over all, even the medium size), directly from our web, in the way Dell does it, instead of using 12 people to issue an offer of less than $5,000, as we do now (and analysts ask Jonathan where our margins are!!!!).

I didn't even considered Dell as a company that could buy us, they are not in the poll list!!!
Although they have the money to buy us.. Well, today even Caldera (are they keeping the name?) could try buying Sun according to the shares price...
John, again, reconsider your attitude...

Friday, September 19, 2008

A way to solve our crisis (if there is any at Sun)

I've order... I mean, asked, Jonathan to have a look to our legal situation to check if we can become a financial corporation instead of what we are. It seems that the government has plenty of money for saving that kind of business (and I thought that we were on the capitalist side of the Cold War, and now it happens that Bush acts like a Marxist! -and I'm not talking about Groucho, although some people think that all this plan is just a comedy-).

Anyhow, if Jonathan plan fails, I already have a B-Plan: We are going to sell mortgages as a way of paying the computers we sell to our customers. It's easy, we sell the iron, then the customer acquires a mortgage to pay the computer, using the very same computer and some other assets from the customer to assure the payment of the debt. Then, you may think 'what happens if the customer doesn't pay?' We get the computer back, and keep the money already payed by the customer.
Then again you may ask: 'What if the value of the computer has decreased and is lower than the debt of the customer? The customer may decide not to pay the debt and buy a newer computer to someone else -or even to Sun again- for less money then the remaining debt'. Yes, it is possible, and this is what assurance companies are for: we are launching immediately, together with Sun Finance, Sun Assurance, so we are going to assure our own mortgage and finance operations with customers. This way all the money remains at Sun at last.

You may then think: 'This is crazy, if customers stop paying, not only Sun would be in dire straits, also the new insurance company will be as they cannot fulfill the debt generated by customers that don't pay their debts. What are you going to do then?'
Easy: the same that Freddy Mac, Fanny Mae, AIG, Merril Lynch... That is why the Federal Reserve is creating that emergency plan for: to buy high risk mortgages and funds (those not payed by the customers, for instance), and assume the debt generated by those naughty (and sometimes even poor) customers. If they are doing it for the financial system, for those who won billions by doing risky business -that are leaving in exchange a black hole in debts-, why are they not going to do that for Sun or even for your mortgage or your medical debts? It would be unfair to rescue those that provoked the major crisis since 1929 and not to the rest of us who pay taxes (well, Jonathan and me do pay taxes in a remote island in the Caribbean, but this is another story).

Monday, September 15, 2008

New Corporate Drink

We are changing our cafeteria offerings and Corona will not be served any more. The reason is obvious, we are serving 'Cerveza Sol' (although I like Corona, Sol tastes similar and the name says it all by itself about the reason why we rather it !!!).
And not only is more corporate, it's cheaper...

Today Mike Lehman came to show me the results forecast for this quarter...
and I'm thinking if my decision is correct or if I should be offering something stronger to our employees (and myself...).
By the way, I've just realized of something about our CFO that is scaring me really bad: Is he one of the Brothers? Oh my Gosh!!!! We are screwed!!!

Ashok, tequila will not be strong enough... order something more appropriate.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Making money from free software!!!

We are the best, We are the best, We are best!!!!!!!!!
(Quoting Barbara Gordon in her last speech at Sun in front of hundreds of engineers, five minutes before running to Ballmer's company...). The good news are we have sold several million dollars (I know the exact amount, but I'm not allowed to say it; for sure it is more than one million, as it is a multi-million dollar deal).
It seems that the ERP leader company Stèsud S.A. (sorry, I guess the whole site is in French; I have to ask Jonathan when did he learn French, as it was a phone call he made to the CEO the one that closed the deal; I hope he didn't offer too much discount...).
I know what you are thinking, I didn't know that company before the deal, but if our press release says they are the leading ERP company in the world, I buy it (that's how we ERP in Belgium...).

Next step is sending hundreds of our sales reps to try selling our friggin iron into the customers' ERP installations sold by Stèsud. At last, this is why we are giving software for free, to turn it into a commodity, so we can sell expensive iron, the real added value we can provide in the business so far, not like Dell is doing. Mwahahahahahaha!

Town Hall Meeting questions: IBIS

As I promised, I'll regularly answer questions regarding the company sent by employees to my e-mail address (don't forget to include your SunID, just in case...) or by asking directly in spontaneous town-hall meetings (I always wondered why tey are called this way).
This is the transcript of our latest meeting, containing question regarding IBIS, the new ERP-CRM-Expenses-BUGTracker-SoftwareForEveryThingImaginable we are installing at Sun

-(Sun employee -soon to be ex-employee) What the Hell is this S@~T you are imposing us? Why are we doing it in the opposite way it would be done in a project at any other customer? It is ORACLE software and it doesn't work well!!!

(Memo to Ashok: Edit the previous question so it will appera in the following way in the blog):
So, the question is: What is IBIS and how is it helping Sun?

-(Scooter)The answer is easy: just look at the picture aside or check the Wikipedia...
Ok, I'm just joking, I'm so funny... I know what is IBIS at Sun.
We took a decision a long time ago, to substitute all our internal systems related to CRM, ERP, Travel and Expenses, thousands of applications (Siebel, SunTea, etc.), for just one integrated system that would allow us to know in real time the status of the company, of our customers, if we are making money or losing it and where. And, by using just a single system to integrate all, we save in hardware (don't need hundreds of systems doing similar things), save in workforce (less administrators needed...), and save in software support (remember, just one product to be maintained).
Besides, it is back in the 2005-06 when we signed the non-aggression pact with Oracle, so while they bought Bea to eliminate one of our competitors, we had to buy MySQL to do the same, and as we spend much less money than them, we had to compensate Larry by using their software inside Sun, quite fair.

Ok, with this the session is over, and now we are off-the-record.

-(Sun almost ex-worker) Mista Scooter, an additional question. The idea seems right but it is a pain in the ass for the people at Sun, we are suffering a lot until IBIS started working, and the substitute of SunTEA (the Travel and Expenses tool), seems to be designed to make you desist asking for your money!

-(Scooter) Hehehehe, very funny, yes, yes, indeed the idea is to save money to the company because you stop asking for expense reimbursement... Just joking!!! (Ashok, take a picture of this dumb-ass). Maybe you have troubles because you didn't read the wikis (we had manuals, but wikis are much more Internet 2.0). Have a look to this link and you'll have no problem.

-(Sun almost ex-worker) Mista Scooter, it is in Korean!!

-(Scooter) What's the problem? I thought in Bangalore you were taught to understand anything.

-(Another almost ex-worker) It is rumored that the deploying process was done in the reverse way it should be done, and that some GEMs have been a whole month unable to issue offers or to record billings and contracts from customers.

-(Scooter) (Ashok, who the hell has come to this meeting? IBM Global Services!!!!) Well, when you sell a project to install a product, you usually learn the way the customer works, you analyze the internal processes of that customer and then you adapt the product to the customer's processes. But this costs money, and we don't want to waste it, so we decided to it the opposite and cheaper way: we installed the software as-is, with no customization (we even maintained the Oracle logos), and we are adapting our internal processes to be the ones used by default in the tool, so we are teaching our 40,000 employees to the new way we are doing business, the Oracle way. Clever, uh? If you want to know the exact method we follow, Scott Adams was there when we took the decision and illustrated it here.

Ok, the session is over, I have to go to have a little talk to Jonathan on account of an unauthorized use of my parking lot with a Prius he wasn't able to turn on... (we had to bring his wife to do it...again).

(Ashok, rememeber not to publish the later part of the meeting, it is highly confidential; and find out the IDs of the two guys making the questions).

Update1: Ashok was fired this morning and his back was painted in yellow for treason.

Update2: Ashok entered five minutes ago asking why he had so much troubles entering into the office today. It seems that his cousin Vidyacharan impersonated him in the town hall meeting (he is working indeed for HP). I re-admitted Ashok, after all I need someone to write this blog... (I find their faces all the same!!!)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Software downloads at Sun

I've just received a summary of the top ten software downloads at Sun (for hardware-like downloads, as Jonathan says in his blog, check here).
I have fun with the software, although I don't really know what it is for so, I'll enclose the list here:

1.MySQL Database (well, this is not surprising at all, I think we bought them to generate traffic to our site).

2. xVM VirtualBox 1.6 (somebody is getting tired of paying licences to VmWare when they can get it for free).

3. Solaris 10 Operating System (This should be the number one, this is the Jewel of the Crown, after Sparc)

4. Sun Download Manager 2.0 (To manage the previous downloads, cool decision).

5. Sun Studio 12 (of course, the best choice to build software for Sparc -and Solaris- and other systems too).

6. Solaris Express Developer Edition (We are confusing customers: they want to download, and pay support, for the genuine Solaris 10, not this. I'll send a memo to Jonathan tomorrow).

7. Services Tools Bundle (STB) 3.1 (Of course, the set of tools that our Sparc -and Solaris- customers need).

8. Sun Device Detection Tool 2.0 (I laugh at the plug-n-pray capability in Windows, this is cool!!!).

9. Directory Server Enterprise Edition (Of course, the place to authenticate your Solaris users in your huge platform! Now seriously: this is the best software product we had ever, and the corner stone and the best-selling product in the software area. You'll be amazed if you knew how much money we still do with this product compared to Identity Manager and Role Manager!!!).

10. Web Server 7.0 Update 3 (I don't get this... We even distribute Apache in our Solaris -all versions-, we push very hard for SAMP, and we still were not able to kill the Web Server, users still download it... People are strange!).

'Sunning' Dell

Well, I have been saying for a while that Sun should imitate Dell's model in many ways (I'll come back to it later, I have to explain it _AGAIN_ to Jonathan this afternoon), but what we have now is Dell imitating Sun's way of manufacturing computers. They are even planning to be more aggressive than us, as we have some factories yet, but we don't do the microprocessors. They are planning to sell all their factories, like IBM did with Lenovo, but instead of selling the brand too (well, what else would they retain...?), they expect to have the PC manufactures fighting each other to be the supplier of cheaper and cheaper PCs. We'll see if this pays out at last... The PC market is quite hard, IBM decided to step out, and now it seems that Dell is struggling to keep the margins.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The truth about Jonathan Schwartz's silence

Many people comes to my office asking me about Jonathan and the possibility of him stepping down from the post of CEO.
The truth is that he has been very busy with all the LinkedIn stuff, I mean, he has been updating his resumé in LinkedIn, but not because he is thinking in going someplace else, no, he is just promoting the deal between them and us, that's all.
Apart from this, as Jonathan posted in his private blog, he has been ill lately and this is why he posted so little lately. What makes me sick is his latest joining to Twitter: would you mind stopping loosing your time and going back to work? (Well, what pisses me off is that he got the idea before than me!!!)

Jonathan: Stop pretending the iPhone is dropping my calls!!! And stop bothering Greg P., he is preparing the dinner tonight. By the way, you should hop by to greet my guests. Don't forget to bring the white wine, please.

Shares down to a historical minimum: Why Worry?!!

Hey, you'd think that this is a very bad news for us in Sun, the shares plunging at $8.50, but it isn't at all, indeed this is great news!
Oh, you may think that I'm furious because I own a lot of Sun shares and that I'm loosing money, but I truly know something you don't know... hehehe. The truth about this is that we are indeed making money, and in particular storage people are quite happy about their results (oh my God, so many time saying that nasty things about the ink that HP was selling, and now I'm happy selling so much magnetic-tape on my own!!!). So, sooner or way much more sooner the shares will boost up again. So, what is happening now? We have about $5billion in cash we don't know what to do with. We are trying to buy some more companies, but after MySQL there seem to be no more options, at least not by now. And there is the risk of being bought by someone (see my poll aside).
This is why we decided to repurchase some of our own stocks, and we need them to be as cheaper as possible to take the most out of the billion we are spending -we'll resell everything as soon as we got again to $50, and our stakeholders will swim in money-. So, there you have it, it is a planned schedule, so if you are smart, you'd all be buying Sun's shares like crazy (Jonathan, don't worry, I won't call to your freaking iPhone to tell you how silly you are, so stop pretending it is not working and answer my calls, I need you to bring some of your white wine stuff to my house right now; we have some executives from a company we are negotiating the selling of Sun; keep it secret, by the way).

Well, maybe this post is just fake and I want you all to rush buying Sun's shares to bring the actions up... Time will say...

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Sun and Mitel (not Mittal)

If you wanna see me with the CEO of Mittal Steel corporation, you can access here to a presentation we did the other day at our headquarters. Hey, I look pretty good next to Stan Lee. I am a Stan Lee fan, but I never figured out that he was into the steel business. I guess this is why we are partnering with them, to use their steel in our servers at a nice price. I didn't read the briefing my secretary prepared as I was coming after playing golf with some customers and I was a little late to the event, but what else would we partnering with a steel maker? In some part of the talk I showed Stan my computer: my id card and my old Palm (I always do the same speech, it comes out automatically...), and he seemed pretty impressed.
Correction: Ah, Ashok came to tell me that I was slightly wrong... the presentation was with Mitel, a VoIP and communications company that just integrated our SunRay with one of their phones (see photo above)... so now it makes sense why they asked me to do the badge number... but I still am surprised that they coudl hire Stan Lee as their chairman, we shoud do something like that and hire some icon like Britney Spears or Lindsay Loohan (I heard Seinfeld is alredy hired... ;-) ).
He is even wearing his classical leather jacket as the one in his "official" Wikipedia picture. I love this man.

Chrome: The Network IS The Computer

I'm quite excited to see that Google is about to launch their new browser. It is true that they were for long demonstrating everybody that our motto at Sun -thanks John Gage- is more valid that ever: The Network Is The Computer (although they are not quite used to buy our gear, they rather to build their own one... nasty boys...). Now, with that half-browser/half-network-Operating-System, they are going a step further into this philosophy. Maybe this way we can sell more SunRays...

What makes me really happy about this is that they are reviving the browser wars we lived in the '90s with Netscape and Microsoft. Why I'm so happy? Back then our shares were about $200, so I truly expect history repeating!!!!

By the way, I really loved the comic explaining the features of this new browser. If it does what they promise, it is going to be a really great stuff (Ballmer, you should be really worry if it proves right, I'm eager to test it). This is one of those days when I really feel proud of having let the car industry for the computer industry. Kids, you did a great job so far, I expect to keep on saying the same after trying the beta.

By the way, Sergey, Larry, as we agreed the meeting is tomorrow evening at my house. I guess we could discuss the financial terms of the fusion at dinner (Jobso recommended an excellent Chardonnay I'm eager to try). Oh, and keep it secret, please.