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March 12, 2005

The Rich Get Richer

Posted in: Main

I do not often tout software programs as I defer to my more IT savvy friend Tom, but in this case I will make an exception. Groove, a virtual office software, was bought by Microsoft and Bill Gates.

Groove is a tremendous virtual office software, which I obviously use, which is the brainchild of Groove’s founder and chief executive Ray Ozzie who is known as the creator of Lotus Notes.

Groove will be integrated into Microsoft’s ”information worker” business. Jeff Raikes, group vice president for that business, said Microsoft plans to retain Groove’s offices at Beverly’s Cummings Center, and its 200 employees. Raikes said he hoped to grow the operation and may use it as a base to attract technology talent in the Boston area.

Groove began in 1997 with a strategy of selling its collaboration software to businesses eager to communicate with their partners, suppliers, and customers. More recently, it has built a market among military and civilian agencies seeking to work together on projects such as rebuilding Iraq and coordinating homeland security

On a personal note I beg Microsoft not to change and ruin this program. It is the perfect virtual office software allowing multiple sites to share the same data and work/edit documents at separate office locations at the same time. The virtual office and real time sharing of information invaluable.

Microsoft and Groove executives said it was too soon to disclose their plans to integrate Groove into Microsoft products, though they hinted it could become a key feature of the next versions of Office and Windows, both under development. Some analysts suggested, however, those development projects may be so far along that it could be difficult to seamlessly integrate Groove’s collaboration offerings.

”Now that Microsoft owns the code for Groove, they’ll be able to bury it into Office and into Longhorn,” the code name for the Windows version due out in October 2006.

As Billy Joel sang, “Don’t Go Changing”.

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