Ray Ozzie, Microsoft’s chief software architect is to leave the company, the software giant has announced.
Ozzie was personally installed by Bill Gates as his effective replacement as head of software in 2005, and the resignation comes as a surprise. Ozzie was the driving force behind Windows Azure, the cloud based services platform that powers large corporate data centres and the consumer facing Live Mesh service.
The announcement was made by Steve Ballmer in an email to the company which read, "With our progress in services and the cloud now full speed ahead in all aspects of our business, Ray and I are announcing today Ray's intention to step down from his role as chief software architect."
However, Ozzie is not entirely out of the picture as Ballmer wrote that he would be focusing on Microsoft’s entertainment side of things.
Ozzie move is the latest in a series of departures from Microsoft. The head of Entertainment and Devices, Robbie Bach, will also be leaving this year, Xbox creater J. Allard has departed, while Stephen Elop has recently eloped to take the reins at Nokia.
It all casts some doubt on Microsoft future direction and strategy and after the good work on Azure, Windows 7, Office 2010 and Windows Phone 7, we’d hate to see the technology giant go off the rails again.