Are you really a programmer?
"The reason they take so long is because one change affects thousands of developers, who's code then affects thousands more end users, so the QA has to be rediculously high, including regression testing to make sure a patch will not somehow break someone else's codebase."
Handling changes is not new. Especially for the open source world. I get updates daily. Never had an update mess something up. Which is incredible considering all those 10 thousands of developers changing a lot of lines of code.
As a programmer you must have heard about modular system design, interfaces and that kind of stuff. That makes it possible to change code without affecting the work of other people.
I really want to read that article now. How is it possible, if you design software the right way, that a single line of code can affect 10*10^4 other developers? Surely Microsoft must have some design goals, preventing this scenario.
I understand that there are QA procedures, but this is a bit far fetched.