AOL's Choice of Google Leaves Microsoft as the Outsider - New York Times: "'I thought Microsoft would pay just about anything to get this,' said David B. Yoffie, a professor at Harvard Business School. For Microsoft, he said, 'AOL was the single best way to gain market share.'
Yet Google found a way to trump Microsoft's hoard of cash, in part because losing to Microsoft was a strategic risk. Mr. Yoffie characterized the deal as 'crucial and purely defensive' for Google because it 'prevents Microsoft from being credible in search.' "