Ummm... could I have what's behind door #2 instead?
In the webcast, Gates made it very clear that he has 100% confidence in Ballmer as CEO. In his words, Ballmer has done a:
...fantastic job on every measure.
On every measure Bill? What about the only one that ultimately matters to shareholders - the stock price? Comments like this are unfortunate because they reinforce the perception of a management team that doesn't place any importance on the stock. A reporter did ask Ballmer about the apparent "disconnect" between results and share price in the Q&A that followed - judge for yourself if you find the answer compelling.
On a brighter note, I'm encouraged to see Ray Ozzie take over the role of chief software architect. Ray seems to have a good handle on where computing is going and what MSFT needs to do to successfully manage the transition. His elevated role may also keep him from succumbing to the 2-3 year maximum career expectancy that has typified most other senior-level transplants to Redmond.
Various media reactions: