Windows Of Opportunity

Microsoft has a new vision for the Net. Will it get it right this time?

Steven A. Ballmer, Microsoft Corp.'s effervescent CEO, steps outside company headquarters in Redmond, Wash., smacks his meaty hands together, and looks to the skies. "What a great day," he booms. Except it's not. June gloom is in full force, and the Northwest is under a blanket of gray. It takes a bit of optimism to believe there's actually a sun on the other side of those clouds. Optimism, though, is something Ballmer seems to have in excess.

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