James Governor's Monkchips

Six Degrees of Super-ation: Closer to Bill?

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Anyone that spends time with Microsoft employees will have noticed they use the word “super” a lot. This comes right from the top. But did you know there is a new scientific theory behind it?

Bill Gates is definitely a “super”-node.

“The networks have a still super-interesting position, but it won’t be like it is today.” link

“Now why are people finally shifting away from super-expensive Unix systems?” link

Sometimes though, Bill gets really excited and goes for what I call the “double super”

“Web services are super, super important.” link

Its not just Bill that goes for full “double supers”. Steve Ballmer is a master of the art.

How about:

“Super.Super. I appreciate it very much”

“Well, we’re super, super excited.”

“Then we start to put the Itanium processor, 64-bit, wonderful floating point performance, huge, huge databases, then you have seamless scalability, capability, any app., 32-bit, 64-bit, front to back, and super cost effective.”

All of the above are from one speech, which contained at least four more “supers”…

Other MS senior executives are close to super too. Eric Rudder? Jeff Raikes?

Gates and Ballmer though are the masters of super.

At a recent conference one of the senior execs from MS UK, unusually for an Englishman, said something was “super important”. Then it It dawned on me.

There is a relationship between a MS exec’s position on the org chart and their use of super. The closer to Bill and Steve the closer to the super source, the more they use the word.

It’s a network effect, kind of a six degrees relationship. I call this effect Six Degrees of “Super”ation. (thanks JC!)

I must admit I far from immune:

“My point is that Google is super powerful already and has the potential of multiple new revenue streams to really hike up the cash generation.” link

So how close are you to Bill? Count the times….

So far I have only worked out a theory, which still needs testing. Next time you meet someone from Redmond see how long before they use “super” – you will find out how close to the top they are.

I wonder if Scoble will begin to show a super correlation? Will he use super more the closer he gets to the borg, I mean org? Will the super cool aid start to have a super effect? In case you’re wondering why call out Scoble its because he is a public experiment in cool-aid drinking. Will he or won’t he? Will he maintain his independence? Or get super super enthusiastic about all things Microsoft?


  1. hahaha – this is priceless 🙂

  2. Further supporting your theory, Microsoft CFO John Connors at this past week’s shareholder meeting: “Don’t forget to check out the demonstrations of some super cool products that are out in the foyer.”


  3. Noted. Execs are never simply “excited” to announce something, they’re always “super-excited”. It’s something that seems to stay in the realm of the exec, thankfully.

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