Robert Cringely posted
yet another
baffling article
in his pulpit column.  While some of his points
make sense, most of the article is littered with very questionable
observations, such as:

It was only when those companies decided to pay attention to Microsoft and
decided to compete with Microsoft that they got in trouble.

Robert is observing the right phenomenon but interpreting it wrongly. 
What got these companies in trouble is not that they started caring about
Microsoft, it’s that Microsoft entered their space.  And when this happens,
ignore Microsoft at your own peril.

Another company that is competing with Microsoft by ignoring them is Google.

Oh Google is certainly not ignoring Microsoft.  Microsoft has a search
engine of its own, so they are definitely competing.  Why does Google have
the upper hand right now?  Because their product is superior to
Microsoft’s.  It’s as simple as that.

The key to beat Microsoft is not by ignoring them but simply by offering
better products before they enter your space.  And when they do finally
enter your space, you need to keep offering better products, because at this
point, simple technical excellence will not last in front of billions of dollars
and a company that has such a stellar track record at executing.