Microsoft flash mob – now are they cool?

Jun 16, 2010, 2:57 AM | Updated: Mar 28, 2011, 3:46 pm

One question seems to come up every decade or so as Microsoft evolves: Is Microsoft cool again?

The technology company Bill Gates and Paul Allen started in 1975 has had phases where it can do no wrong with soaring stock prices and young millionaires creating must have software. Remember when Microsoft was king in the 1990s and Apple was sour? Those times are usually followed by the “what were they thinking” years, when everything Microsoft attempts seems lame. Competitors raise the bar and then drop on Microsoft’s foot, leaving the company hobbling off to try something else.

We’re swinging toward another “Hey, Microsoft actually has some interesting stuff going on” cycle. It started in December of 2009 when a Zeta Interactive study for Brandweek called Microsoft the most buzz-worthy brand of the year. Jon Fortt, a senior writer for Fortune Magazine, noticed the “sudden Microsoft love” in February. Engadget and Gizmodo founder Peter Rojas observed in March that Microsoft has given themselves permission to be cool again. And when Kinect debuted this week at E3, even cynical techies said, “Wow.”

What else could Microsoft possibly do to show it’s hot, happenin, hip?

How about a flash mob? That’s where people practice a well-choreographed dance, appear to randomly be hanging out in some area, then burst into the routine in unison.

To celebrate the launch of Office 2010 yesterday, they staged flash mobs in New York at lunch time, and during the afternoon commute at Seattle’s Westlake Park. Microsofties dancing to “Feel Good.” BGSquared posted this on YouTube:

Does this help or hinder the “Microsoft is cool again” argument? All flash mobs make me smile, so I’m not one to judge.

If you’re really into this, you can compare Seattle’s flash mob to New York’s event at Lincoln Center.

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Microsoft flash mob – now are they cool?