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Amnon Govrin, Friday, 10-31-14 November 1, 2014

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Amnon Govrin, Friday, 10-31-14


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Guest:  Amnon Govrin.  Topics:  We discussed our guest’s op-ed, “Is Microsoft the NASA of Software Companies.”  Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See http://www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

We welcomed Amnon Govrin to the show to discuss his thoughtful op-ed, “Is Microsoft the NASA of Software Companies.”  You can read this op-ed at http://www.spacepirations.com/2014/10/is-microsoft-nasa-of-software-companies.html.  During the first segment of our 100 minute discussion, Amnon shared his background with us and what led him to write this article.  He listed attributes of both organizations that made them similar, plus he provided his own background as a space enthusiast as well as working in the software industry and in recent years for Microsoft.  To establish the groundwork for his article, he talked to the amazing things both organizations have done as well as the innovations they have brought to not just the industry but to humanity.  He was asked about differences with one being a private company and the other a government agency plus he addressed politics which he said were plentiful for both organizations though different.  He looked at historic big projects for both organizations & the innovation of such projects.  He suggested common traits including research and technology.  Amnon talked NewSpace, also he went back to the early days of our space program with rockets and hardware, then he did the same with some of the Microsoft early projects and products.  Another topic in this segment dealt with layoffs for both organizations, consolidations, and positioning their respective organizations for the future.  He said the verdict was out on the success in doing this for both organizations.  Our guest talked about and  identified what he referred to as Black Sheep, a section of his op-ed.  Black Sheep referred to products and projects that don’t make it for one reason or another.  He said both NASA and Microsoft had a history of many Black Sheep projects and products and he identified a few including Vista and Constellation.  Michael Listner called to talk about the denaturalized approach of both organizations.  Amnon and Michael has much to say about decentralization.  About this time, we started getting breaking news information regarding the Virgin SpaceShip2 accident. We continued to report breaking news on this story during the rest of our program.

In the second segment, in addition to the breaking news reports, we talked about both organizations becoming stale meaning irrelevant, heavy, and even wasteful.  Again, our guest cited many examples for both organizations.  More interruptions took place over the Virgin accident story and news, then we moved to the conclusion section of the last segment.  He talked about the difficulty for both organizations going into the future and what may impact the future of both Microsoft and NASA.  For NASA, he mentioned NewSpace.  Then we talked competition and for NASA, he mentioned the private sector launch industry as this competition may force changes in the way NASA does thing.  He questioned if innovation was in decline.  In the final minutes of the program, I asked our guest for his 5 year view for both Microsoft and NASA.  We also talked Astronauts for Hire as our guest was a co-founder of the organization.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog.  You can reach our guest through me or his own blog above.