The New York Times > Technology > Amid Belt-Tightening, Microsoft Talks of a Bright Future "In a telephone interview yesterday afternoon, Mr. Ballmer said he was more optimistic about Microsoft's prospects than at any time in the last three years. He noted the strength and upward trend in its mainstay desktop software businesses, server software, and the encouraging improvement in emerging businesses like its MSN Web sites and Xbox video game consoles and games.
Mr. Ballmer also added that Microsoft was more confident about competing against the rising challenge of open-source software like the Linux operating system, which is distributed free. Microsoft's competitive response is to emphasize what it contends is the lower total cost of owning, maintaining and supporting its Windows operating system."
A factoid from the article: Microsoft now has 57,000 full-time workers.