Kara Swisher

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Microsoft's Stephen Elop Speaks!

stephenelop

In BoomTown’s ongoing series, “Microsofties on Parade,” I spent some time earlier this week with Stephen Elop (pictured here), president of Microsoft’s Business division.

Reporting directly to CEO Steve Ballmer, Elop is a newbie, having gotten to Microsoft (MSFT) only a year ago.

Which is why he is enthusiastic in his determination to tell the world that the software giant has gotten the open religion and is becoming “the most interoperable company in the world.”

Elop said that humdinger earlier this week, when he was in San Francisco for an onstage Q&A with Tim O’Reilly at the Web 2.0 Expo.

The statement was met by a show of “no” hands, after O’Reilly asked who in the audience thought that was true.

Still, Elop pressed on, also hinting that Microsoft’s Office products–Excel, PowerPoint, Word–could even be coming to the Apple (AAPL) iPhone.

“Not yet, keep watching,” said Elop, whose portfolio has purview over Office, as well as the Dynamics business applications division and Unified Communications products.

I suppose Elop can be that cheeky, after a lot of Silicon Valley experience as COO of Juniper Networks (JNPR) and CEO of Macromedia, which was acquired under his tenure by Adobe (ADBE).

Or, it could be that he knows from having five kids–including triplet 10-year-olds–that patience is a virtue and that there might be a day when more hands might shoot up.

In any case, here is a video interview I did with Elop, where he talks about making Microsoft a more open and innovative place, the changing business model of software and more:


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik