Do some research
Oh come on.
"Name one *successful* product they've put out in the last 10 years that wasn't an evolution of their own product (Win7) or a me-too of someone else's product (XBox)?"
Everything is a "me-too" of someone else's product. Hell, HTC released a touch phone, working better than anything else, months before Apple released their iPhone. Linux is a copy of Unix. Etc.
Have some standards. The Xbox was a good product, it was powerful, and it had some great games on it. It had a different shape to other products, even the controllers were different. I'm one of those people who liked their controllers too, never owned an Xbox, and I don't have big hands, but the PS2 controllers seemed small. Yes, it was a gaming platform, but that isn't in and of itself enough to make it a "me-too" product.
"Very true, but that's also the author's (and Ozzie's from my reading of it) point... you can also write a web app that can run on any Windows/Mac/Mobile device."
Lies, Java and Flash are meant to be able to do that, but Java has been rewritten enough times so that's a fail. And Flash isn't supported on an iPhone. So define "web app"? If you mean a bit of JS, HTML and CSS, then.. Wait, not all standards are supported by all browsers, Firefox for example. So this isn't just a rant against Apple.
MSFT can't win market share, they're not allowed to. :P Which is their main problem. If they make a product, people will hate it, then go buy an identical (worse from a sys spec point of view but like that counts for anything) product from someone else a few months later. MSFT have several problems.
One: Everyone hates them
Two: See one
Three: If they gain too large a market share, IE for example, then they start getting anti-trust lawsuits
Four: Google is pushing cloud computing. No country has the features in place for it to work, but that isn't stopping them. And MSFT is still primarily not cloud. Desktop/Server. Business and home, not cloud
Five: They're a software company. That's a big problem. Because they don't control every part of the manufacturing process for the hardware their products are installed on, they can't maximize their products efficiency. They let web devs do whatever they want, make dodgy as HTML markup and it would still run. Hence why IE got such a big market share. But as Google is finding, broadening out has it's downsides. Android is installed on how many phones? Quite a few last I checked. And there's what.. 3 main versions difference? So an Android phone isn't an Android phone, it's a phone that has some form of Android on it yes. But it isn't as advertised by Google. Not all phones have the same functionality, not all phones are released on the same day, not all phones are updated. And that contributed massively to consumers disliking Android phones. It wasn't the phones fault, the user just thought they'd get a different phone than what they got.
Six: They have a problem with their reputation, as per one and two, but more specifically they have a problem with security. Browsers like Firefox and Safari are getting attacked more nowadays, OS's like Apple's OS* and random *nix distro's are getting attacked more than Windows, and patched less, but they still have that reputation. Why? Because it's cool to hate MSFT.
They're definitely not dying, businesses will always use a Windows computer more than an Apple computer assuming current standards hold because Windows is cheaper, is established, and unlike Apple pays attention to security. Same goes for FOSS, which actually isn't F, and isn't OS, just S with a hippy reputation. MSFT will guarantee their software, MSFT Server failed? Call them up, they'll walk you through fixing it, or if that fails then there''ll be a techy to swing by in an hour. "Open source" won't do that. I know, I know, you can buy support for X $ and that's how open source stays in business, but it isn't included. And techies know MSFT, we grow up on it, we can make it do whatever we want. We don't know every single *nix distro and product.
Off topic here, open source can't compete with MSFT till there's one product for each category, one OS, one DB, one GUI, etc. Till then there's no standards so businesses will hate you. Canonical is trying to take over with Linux Equals Ubuntu messages everywhere, but they've got a ways to go yet.
So the problem with MSFT is that it's MSFT. They can't win simply because it's them trying. I've had the same experience with friends, I recommend a product which would suit them perfectly, they ignore me, another person recommends it, they go on and on about how much it's just _them_. And that isn't fixable. Fortunately MSFT has the business world to tide them over. And Xbox, good product. Also Windows, you can't game on any other product no matter what you hear. Mac is using Nvidia cards that went out of production on Windows gear years ago, also Intel procs. Which makes them an expensive PC with the entire markup due to the OS. And *nix.. What can I say, come back in ten years with working graphics and sound. :D
Heh, long rant and I don't even like MSFT. I liked Vista Ultimate, and 7 isn't too bad. I like IE, but only because it doesn't crash randomly on me like Opera and gets less drivebys than Firefox. I like Office, but only because the competitors are freaking terrible. Open Office was.. I last tried it a year ago, it took 5mn to load, the scripting kept crashing, it was.. Really terrible. Not at all polished, and I like polished. I like working. I also like it when I can hit open and 30 seconds later I'm typing. May have changed, I'm due for updates on all my random *nix gear. And Slackware needs some sort of application on it. If only so I don't need to boot Windows.
MSFT has good products but is hated because it's MSFT. But is far from dead for the same reasons. It has good products and it's MSFT. Business like standards, gamers like working components.
Apple PC's use Intel procs, Nvidia graphics. Same build as a Windows PC, with two differences. That being the sys specs are much lower, and there's a stupidly high markup. Which is due to.. Take a wild guess.
Hint, it's the OS.
No fee for it... In your wildest dreams :P
All that time defending a company I dislike.. I need to go shower -.-