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High Noon: The Inside Story of Scott McNealy and the Rise of Sun Microsystems (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 10. September 1999

3.9 von 5 Sternen 11 Kundenrezensionen

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Sun Microsystems is the type of company that most new startups hope to become: massively profitable, astoundingly innovative, and supremely adaptable. But as Karen Southwick's engaging narrative High Noon makes clear, there were many bumps along the road to Sun's $25 billion market valuation. In fact, when Sun started out in the early '80s as a spinoff of the Stanford University Network (SUN), there was barely a road at all.

It's hard to remember a time when there wasn't a computer on every desktop, but in 1981, engineers had to stand in line to use their company's mainframes. Sun's business strategy was to sell a desktop workstation for each employee who needed a computer. On top of that, Sun allowed those workstations to exchange data via an intracompany network, and used graphical interfaces to make them easier to navigate. Standard stuff now, but a radical series of concepts back then, and it was inevitable that Sun would clash with Microsoft. Sun CEO Scott McNealy's enmity for the software colossus is well-known--he was a key player in the U.S. government's antitrust action against Microsoft in the late 1990s--and it temporarily scattered the company's focus, leading to a major reorganization.

The conclusion to the Sun story is, of course, unknown. Southwick ends her book with a peek into the future, speculating on what will become of promising computer languages like Java and Jini. But it seems like it'll be a long time before Sun sets. --Lou Schuler

Synopsis

In 1982, a little upstart named Sun was making waves in the high-tech industry with its groundbreaking workstation technology, even as early competitors dismissed the company as not worth losing sleep over. Since then, Sun Microsystems has become a formidable presence in the industry, making its own rules and taking no prisoners, and is currently poised to reach the highest point of its ascendancy - the challenge of Microsoft's dominance over the future of computing. The driving force behind this once fledgling company is a man who has been described as brash, unconventional, ambitious, forward-looking, and sometimes even his own worst enemy. Scott McNealy turned Sun into the multibillion-dollar success it is today - a developer of innovative software like Java that is revolutionizing the computing landscape. High Noon is the inside story of Sun's rise to power, from its shaky start in Silicon Valley through its transformation under the aggressive and inspirational leadership of McNealy. Karen Southwick reveals the behind-the-scenes maneuverings of McNealy and Sun, with candid interviews from the key players and insights into the inner workings of the high-tech industry.

This book examines how scrappy underdog Sun overcame its larger and supposedly tougher competitors, combining hard work, tenacity, and talented people to build a more innovative and flexible company. You'll learn how McNealy moved Sun up the industry food chain, challenging more established companies like Hewlett-Packard and Digital Equipment by expanding Sun's product line and refocusing the business. High Noon expertly chronicles McNealy's triumphant history with Sun, from his early days as vice president of manufacturing to a CEO known for shooting straight from the hip without regard for the consequences. You'll discover how "Javaman" - as Fortune magazine dubbed McNealy - prompted Sun to take risks that ultimately allowed it to survive, thrive, and dominate - making Microsoft stand up and take notice. And you'll see how Sun's looming showdown with this industry giant promises wide-reaching implications for businesses and consumers alike.

Among High Noon's revelations: A new perspective on how the complex, contradictory McNealy shaped his company and fashioned its strategy Insight into central issues facing the high-tech industry, such as network computers and the future of the Internet An insider view of the maneuverings of industry powerhouses, including Microsoft, Oracle, Netscape, IBM, and Intel Both entertaining and instructive, High Noon offers valuable lessons for taking charge of your destiny and succeeding in a fast-paced, unpredictable, and even hostile environment. Advance Praise for Karen Southwick's High Noon "High Noon captures the electricity and drama of one of the most important high-tech sagas of our time. Rich with insight as well as previously undisclosed stories." - Jim Moore, Founder, GeoPartners Research, Inc. Author of The Death of Competition "High Noon reveals the inside story of one of the companies Microsoft fears most, Sun Microsystems. Southwick uses her keen insight to tell the story of how four twenty-somethings created a company that has grown from a small seller of scientific computers to one of the most dominant high-tech firms in the world."

- Eric Nee, Editor, Fortune "Scott McNealy is one of the most complex, fascinating individuals in high tech. Karen Southwick captures the contrarian spirit of Sun Microsystems and the intriguing personalities that run it." - Howard Anderson, President, The Yankee Group "High Noon takes us on a straight path to the future." - Dr. Eric Schmidt, Chairman and CEO, Novell, Inc. "High Noon illustrates how a company can succeed in the technology industry through a delicate balance between drive, talent, and timing." - Carol Bartz, Chairman and CEO, Autodesk

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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
High Noon reveals the inside story of a world-class IT company. It provides an insider's view at the business strategies of Sun Microsystems and its gutsy leader, CEO Scott McNealy. Sun Microsystems (creators of the Java programming language) is now in a position to challenge high-tech's most powerful players over the future of computing. This is due in large part to its practical, ambitious, and forward-looking CEO.
High Noon is a thorough case study of this successful company, from its birth as the brainchild of Indian immigrant Vinod Khosla in 1982, through its rise under McNealy's brash and unconventional methods, to its current battle with Microsoft, which will undoubtedly change the landscape of the computer industry. This entertaining and instructive book reveals the behind-the-scenes maneuverings of McNealy and Sun, with candid interviews from the key players that provide insight into the inner workings of the high-tech industry.
High Noon will appeal to managers interested in applying Sun's innovative tactics to their own companies, as well as anyone intrigued by the compelling success story of this unique Silicon Valley company.
Karen Southwick of San Francisco, California has been writing about technology and Silicon Valley for more than a decade, first with San Francisco Chronicle, then Upside magazine and most recently, Forbes ASAP. She also authored Silicon Gold Rush.
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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I found this book interesting, and for the most part factual, or at least consistant with my knowledge of the industry and Sun's history. I was hoping to get more biographical infomation on Scott McNealy. I felt mislead by the cover as the book doesn't really give any "inside story" of Scott McNealy. While the book does tell an interesting story on "the rise of Sun Microsystems", I think the book comes across as biased against Sun in regards to its struggles against the competition. The industry changes quickly and prehaps things have changed since this book was written. It appeared to me that the author was implying that Sun was standing still with Solaris and trying to buy time until NT overtook Solaris. It is my professional opinion that Sun is improving the Solaris operating system and the Ultra Sparc hardware at a faster rate than Microsoft is getting NT ready for prime time. I don't see Sun facing much competition from Compaq or Dell, even when and if the Merced chip arrives. The author states in the final pages of the book that Sun needs to focus on beating IBM. I have worked in a large IBM Mainframe shop for 15 years. What I see is more and more work being offloaded from the IBM mainframes to the Sun/Solaris servers. I think IBM will beat itself as far as competing with Sun goes. Their mainframes running MVS are too expensive to purchase, too expensive to operate and don't offer the variety of database and ERP software that can be found on Unix. If IBM had a decent offering in the Unix world, they wouldn't have just gone out and accuired Sequent Computer Corp.I think it is IBM who must play catch up in order to be a major player in the internet world. I think the author could have painted a more objective and less subjective view of Sun's chances for survival in the industry. All, in all, I would still recommend the book. I found it interesting, just a bit too biased toward Microsoft and IBM.
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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
High Noon provides an insider's view at the business strategies of Sun Microsystems and its gutsy leader, CEO Scott McNealy. Sun Microsystems' success is due in large part to the leadership of its practical, ambitious, and forward-looking CEO.
This entertaining and instructive book will appeal to managers interested in applying Sun's innovative (and often brash and unconventional) tactics to their own companies, and those intrigued by the behind-the-scenes maneuverings of McNealy and Sun.
Karen Southwick of San Francisco, California has been writing about technology and Silicon Valley for more than a decade, first with San Francisco Chronicle, then Upside magazine and most recently, Forbes ASAP. She also authored Silicon Gold Rush.
Reviewed by Azlan Adnan. Formerly Business Development Manager with KPMG, Azlan is currently managing partner of Azlan & Koh Knowledge and Professional Management Group, an education and management consulting practice based in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. He holds a Master's degree in International Business and Management.
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Von Ein Kunde am 2. September 1999
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
What I really liked about this book was its objectivity about the subject. It would have been easy to just bash Microsoft and say 'Sun was King'. But this book focuses fairly on both the strengths and shortcomings of McNealy and Sun, making it a true history of a really remarkable company.
It seems like the author talked to everyone who was anyone involved with Sun and the high-tech computer industry to write this. It gets deep inside the motivations of the people without resorting to the kind of salacious "star-gazing" someone like Albert Goldman, Kitty Kelly or Victor Bockris would inject into their prose. Consummately professional. The April's Fool's jokes alone are worth the price of the book!
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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This is more of a business biography about the company and its present CEO. The age old feud against Microsoft and SUN's active role to bring the big brother to book have been narrated like a novel. Technology takes the back seat when dramatics take over. The concepts of "Network is the computer", Java, "Openness" and the paradigm shift in the world of computing that has taken place during the last two decades, the major players and the not so ethical ways of competing do get some attention.
The dot in the dot com deserves a much better book that can bring out its real strengths and contribution to the world of cyberspace.The SUN never sets over this small planet !
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