No soda for Steve

Steve Ballmer was asked by a student if Microsoft would ever create an open-source version of Windows in the future. He responds, I guess in an attempt at humour, with this:

We wouldn’t be hosting Minority Student Day if we open-source Windows because we wouldn’t have enough profit to pay people, let alone invite in people from the community. I’m not saying open-source is a bad thing, but it doesn’t pay the bills in this company, so we can’t embrace that way of doing things. … We give out free soda pop to everybody who works here. We make our stuff free, people gotta give back the soda pop — it’s just inconsistent with what we do around here.

I’m not going to go into depth on all the reasons why he’s wrong, but since he mentions inconsistencies… if free software is so unprofitable, why is Microsoft so determined to pay $44.6 billion (with a B) for Yahoo!, a company build largely on free and open-source software?

I can’t take this man seriously.

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