@Ledswinger Re:"Bill Gates.........and as software architect responsible for W8"
That is a very interesting point. It would be fascinating to know whether it was in fact Gates that was the reason why Ballmer could not reign in Sinofski until it was too late for Win 8 and in the end had to fall on his sword as part of the price for ensuring that the former head of the Windows division was made to walk the plank shortly after the launch of W8. It is very difficult to believe that Sinofski could have gotten away with quite the degree of "fuck you" attitude towards the internal critics at Redmond (and they did exist, not everyone was exactly happy with his iPad obsessions - ie Surface 2 on ARM running Windows RT) without some very powerful backing from very high up in the company's hierarchy. Given that Ballmer and Gates had, apparently, been at loggerheads for years it is unlikely that it was both of them. So the question is, who was Sinofski's "sponser" - Gates or Ballmer?
Very good post by the way Ledswinger - well argued and logical.