Home > In the News > Be’s Gassée Appointed Chairman of the PalmSource Board Be’s Gassée Appointed Chairman of the PalmSource Board Submitted by Kian Duffy 2004-11-02 In the News 40 Comments PalmSource today announced Jean-Louis Gassée has been appointed Chairman of the PalmSource Board of Directors. JLG was the CEO of Be in the ’90s and an Apple executive in the ’80s. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 40 Comments 2004-11-02 9:04 pm Could this mean that…? Is it possible that now…? Nah, I guess it doesn’t. 2004-11-02 9:09 pm …well, now he will conquer the world! 🙂 2004-11-02 9:11 pm Good to see Jean-Louis Gassée back on the mainstream computer scene. He used to write a really interesting set of articles for Liberation about life in Silicon valley a few years ago (in French). http://www.liberation.fr/page.php?Article=80718 Wonder what the future holds for Palm once they manage to get the new OS out? The older one is really starting to show its age. 2004-11-02 9:12 pm maybe mac support will return now? . . . probably not 2004-11-02 9:21 pm Ahh, Be’s secret takeover of Palm is finally complete! 😉 2004-11-02 9:28 pm …anything can happen. It’s not likely, but it’s possible that he’ll push for releasing parts of BeOS to the public. Eugenia might, by virtue of her husband, chime in here with some somewhat insiderish info, or, at the very least, an insightful thought. 2004-11-02 9:39 pm The previous leadership of PalmSource played safe and found reasons to bury the beos source code. Maybe JLG will be less defensive and will find reasons to open the box? Anyway worth dreaming a little! 🙂 2004-11-02 9:51 pm “Safe Harbor Statement CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties…” Ahh, brings me back to the day. After the first little bit all beos articles ended with such a line. forgot how much I liked them (Grin) 2004-11-02 9:52 pm “Safe Harbor Statement CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties…” Ahh, brings me back to the day. After the first little bit all beos articles ended with such a line. forgot how much I liked them (Grin) 2004-11-02 9:53 pm Now, I am not sure about his business abilities, to be honest, but I look forward to his humor once again. Check out his famous quotes: http://www.bedope.com/qjlg/ 2004-11-02 10:14 pm Maybe I’m wrong here, but as I recall, Be started out cool (“We <heart> developers”) but then soon began the downward spiral with actions that said: “anything for the shareholders! We must maximize shareholder value!!”. I always had the impression that JLG sold us (the BeOS user & developer community) out, then got the golden parachute when Be was bought by Palm. Well, I don’t know the guy — maybe he’s got an unimpeachable character,.. or maybe he’s just another suit going for the cash grab. Dunno. 2004-11-02 10:18 pm That’d be awesome, but I’m not going to hold my breath. A small, dedicated team working on a commercial product can really do great things, but such teams have a high mortality rate, and too often, really cool technology dies with them. I wish “open source after death” was more common, but unfortunately it’s not. 2004-11-02 10:18 pm Maybe he can “focus shift” Palm towards internet appliances. With his magnificent management skills, marketing savvy, and financial acumen, he can do for Palm what he did for Be, Inc. 2004-11-02 10:21 pm Let the law-suits begin … 2004-11-02 10:39 pm Welcome to reality. 2004-11-02 11:10 pm That’s exactly what I thought when I read this announcement. It would be so cool if PalmSource announced that they are no longer interested in the current PalmOS, because they will focus on making internet appliances from now on. 2004-11-02 11:12 pm His purpose is to see the end of Palm, Inc and sell it to Apple. Note: I have no proof of this. He is most likely to sell it to YellowTab :B 2004-11-02 11:16 pm I can’t wait to see the blinkenlights on the next Treo. 2004-11-02 11:21 pm This is the best news to me in a long time. Not because I will be much affected by this, but I’ve always kinda admired JLG even though he made a lot of mistakes. Even though he was a dreamer he kept his feet on the ground, more so than most “realistic” people. So I’m really happy that he is getting in a position where he might have the possibility to do what he likes to do. His previous job didn’t seem to be anything like that. Congrats to JLG and PalmSource. 2004-11-02 11:28 pm “golden parachute” ?! I think you’re mixing metaphores here. Just a litlle bit. 2004-11-02 11:55 pm I don’t know why you folks are happy … JLG was the genius who prevented Apple from licensing its software when it still made business sense and he failed to get the BeOS off the ground when it was at least five years ahead of anything technologically at the time. The man’s incompetence is ASTOUNDING! I personally know that JLG missed the opportunity to have the world’s first media center OS SIX YEARS AGO because I WAS THE ONE WHO PROPOSED IT TO HIM!!!!!!!! The BeOS could have been then what Microsoft’s Media Center OS is now. Some more incompetence from JLG … I requested a meeting with him to propose Be devoting resources to an x86 virtual machine project, which would have given him the ability to co-opt Windows by running it directly from the BeOS and a foothold in a potentially lucrative niche market. He ignored me. A year later, VMWare is created and brings its VM to the market a year after that. To make a long story short, the BeOS tanks and Be is sold for 11 million dollars, VMWare locks down the x86 VM market and is bought for 635 MILLION dollars IN CASH! The guy is no genius, he has a history of spectacular failures due to his arrogance. PalmSource is finished. 2004-11-03 12:37 am Put an egomaniac who already ran one company into the ground in a position of power. Thats real bright thinking. 2004-11-03 12:42 am Maybe he can “focus shift” Palm towards internet appliances. With his magnificent management skills, marketing savvy, and financial acumen, he can do for Palm what he did for Be, Inc. Brilliant! Shift Palm towards the exact thing that killed Be and in the end he can do the death dance all over again as Palmsource goes for a lame 10 million on the auction block. Business skill and marketing savvy ? This guy killed one company already and left a few investors out in the rain with their pants down. The guy is a bloody moron who should be flipping burgers on the corner and telling stories of the Be glory days to loser dropouts who will never make it anyway. 2004-11-03 1:49 am …dead cat bounce anyone ?! 2004-11-03 2:10 am Some of the posts are just hilarious even on such a big event. I wonder if they’ll change his title to “Fearless leader” and JLG does a monthly news letter? 2004-11-03 2:30 am Does anybody know how active the PalmSource BoD is? The last company I worked at had significant change in the BoD while I was employed there. I noticed no difference in day to day running or long term direction, so head of BoD might not have much influence beyond approving loans/financial stuff and maybe some product related bits. I hope that Palm (both parts) are okay. I really respect them for being one of the few companies to value good simple UI. 2004-11-03 3:17 am MoronPeeCeeUSR, check your browser — I don’t think the sarcasm tags are rendering properly for you. 2004-11-03 7:26 am Sorry if i look a bit angry but here’s my point of view : I really think JLG is really nice guy but i seriously think i’ve been screwed like many several tiny shareholders of Be,inc. I’ve invest on Be’s technologies, at the time when BeOS was more than a competitor to Microsoft product, then in BeIA, but all of this have been sold for 11$ million to Palm. Also the lawyers who defend the Be,inc sharholders interests settle for $ 23.25 million from Microsoft ! I can’t see any interest from an IPO of 6$/share to ~0.5$ a share ! It’s really hurt.. 2004-11-03 8:53 am If you really want some speculation fodder, AMD is pushing the Geode/IA platform again at a slightly increased speed and claiming to aim for 50% of the world connected in something like 5 years or some such. Not sure their target date. I personally don’t see JLG as much different than any others in a cutthroat industry except for a better than average sense of humor. I’d have to reserve judgement until I actually met and talked with him before I’d spout out uneducated opinions about him or anyone with the aire of an “expert” of human nature. 2004-11-03 11:40 am Well, this time he knows IAs are not profitable and instead he’ll spend 5 years turning PalmOS 5 into a full-blown desktop OS! Man, AT LEAST jlg is funny. Although this fun is bittersweet. 2004-11-03 2:06 pm This is bad karma. All the people from a failed company are now running a company which is in a difficult place. Heck the CEO of palmsource (nagel) is the guy who ran apple’s failed efforts to create a new OS. We all know the be story. I don’t blame JLG for be’s failure. When you try the impossible you inevitable fail. He made some mistakes, notably underestimating how determined MS was to squash them, but he did a respectable job with what he had. However, the similarities are concerning. Lets just hope that those at palm learned from their previous experiences as appple and be. 2004-11-03 4:24 pm “This is bad karma. All the people from a failed company are now running a company which is in a difficult place. Heck the CEO of palmsource (nagel) is the guy who ran apple’s failed efforts to create a new OS. We all know the be story.” Next failed when Apple bought it. And its CEO Steve Jobs now is the CEO of Apple… Oh yes, I’m sorry: Apple is going out of business! Ahahahahahah! X-D 2004-11-03 5:58 pm You bring up a good point. Maybe this will be time that JLG succeeds. Palm could proliferate in Laptops, cell phones, and embedded devices, PDAs, even a cheap computers for emerging markets. I wish them luck. 2004-11-03 6:23 pm JLG can’t start anything new and have credibility in the corporate world until he decide to go back in court and get is 3×6$ stock value from microsoft … 11 cent, what a JOKE! 2004-11-03 7:58 pm Wow. To reward a man whose entire resume consists of driving smart and innvoative companies out of business (even ones he founded!) with shortsighted and/or arrogant decisions with yet another CEO position is, to me, incomprehensible. Then again, perhaps all Palmsource is looking for is an easy slide into bankruptcy…who knows. All I know is that, with his record, I wouldn’t hire Mr. Gassee to run a Starbucks, much less a technology firm. He should stick to what he does well – writing mildly funny observations about the world of technology. 2004-11-03 9:12 pm Heh. Someone beat me to the focus shift line. I don’t wish harm off onto anyone. Especially the ‘workers’ in a company who produce PalmOS. I personally believe JLG did not create the magnificent product BeOS – the coders did. He was the funnel. It is sort of cheap to attack someone when we, as general users, were not there to see everything that went on or what the shareholders directed him to do. If Be Inc. was still producing BeOS, and I am keeping an eye on Haiku, I would still be using it. Maybe JLG will donate the BeOS code to the Haiku project under a BSD or open source license. Who knows. I can dream. 2004-11-03 11:02 pm he had an opportunity to sell beos to apple remember? when he worked at apple, he priced high. palmsource is screwed 2004-11-04 6:27 am “To reward a man whose entire resume consists of driving smart and innvoative companies out of business (even ones he founded!) with shortsighted and/or arrogant decisions with yet another CEO position is, to me, incomprehensible.” Jean-Louis Gassée, CEO of PalmSource?! Where did you get that one from? David Nagel is the CEO of PalmSource and Jean-Louis Gassée has been appointed chairman of PalmSource’s board of directors — relevant press releases here: http://www.palmsource.com/press/2004/110104_board.html http://www.palmsource.com/press/2004/081304_benhamou.html Please get the facts before you write. 2004-11-04 9:43 am Maybe YT can get the whole kernel source now? 2004-11-07 5:02 am He needs someone to make his sandwiches?