I just got around to reading Kurt Eichenwald’s account of Microsoft’s decline in Vanity Fair. Microsoft has always held a grim fascination for me — when I first started writing this blog my number one topic was inveighing against Microsoft’s monopoly. Now Microsoft is just another information technology company. The article puts Microsoft’s drift down to two causes, a stagnation of its stock price that stopped the minting of Microsoft millionaires, and a stack ranking system that creates perverse incentives inside the company. My only criticism of the article is that it refers to Microsoft to being “cool” in the past more than once. As someone who was around at the time, I can guarantee that nobody ever thought Microsoft was cool.