I just saw a video of Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, arguing why closed-source is better than open-source. One of his reasons was that Microsoft takes responsibility for the problems with their products to their customers and said that any customer “knows where to find him” and they can email him at steveb@microsoft.com. So I took him up on his offer and emailed him:

To: steveb@microsoft.com
Subject: Windows XP problem

I just watched the video of you being interviewed at the Gartner Symposium and you mentioned that you take responsibility for problems in your products (as opposed to open-source products where you say that no one is responsible) and that your customers can email you at steveb@microsoft.com. So that's what I'm doing...

My Windows XP crashed this morning (it said something about an error in "0x800000EA03BC0A" or something like that) and I lost some work I was doing in Office 2000. Assuming what you said was true, can you take responsibility for this problem that one of your customers is having and fix Windows XP and/or Office 2000 so that it doesn't crash anymore?

Your customer,
Troy Hakala

Let’s see if he was telling the truth.

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