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A Microsoft Life

3.54  ·  Rating Details ·  191 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
With over 15 years at the Microsoft Corporation, Stephen "Stepto" Toulouse has been witness to some amazing and fun things. Enjoy a journey through the eyes of a geek working at one of the most important companies in the world as he walks you through events both large and small. Just don't get caught in the Redmond reality distortion field!

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ebook, 156 pages
Published December 6th 2010 by Stephen Toulouse (first published November 30th 2010)
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Jun 11, 2011 Toby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be a honest and poignant look inside the walls of that ever famous Redmond Campus. Stepto takes you on a journey on how one simple guy, through perseverance, was able to go from outsider to insider in one of the most powerful companies in our age.

The writing in the book was conversational and easy to follow along. I had the "voice" of Stephen Toulouse keep me company for my thirty hour journey as I flew to work half-way around the world. At the close of the book, I found
Meg Cassidy
Jan 04, 2014 Meg Cassidy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic! I decided to read this book because Stepto was on a nerdy cruise I went on and I'm so glad I had that motivation. I know sometimes I take on the "Microsoft is evil," "Google is evil," "Apple is evil," "okay, every big company is evil!" mentality, but I this book reminds me that the people working for these organizations are just as excited about technology as I am. Most of them don't want to ruin peoples' days. Laughter, tears (argh, I cried in a few places), and some really great inf ...more
Mar 29, 2011 Doug rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, memoir, kindle
This collection of blog entries starts out fairly strong, but began to lose my interest towards the second half of the book. I found the "behind the scenes" look at life at Microsoft much more interesting than the opinion pieces on security/tech/gamer culture.

The author repeatedly tried to reinforce his belief that Microsoft is not "evil", but I couldn't help but question why he felt the need to do so with such frequency. After a while it began to feel like he was a bit unsure himself and consta
Nov 06, 2011 Andrew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure how best to describe A Microsoft Life. It's a collection of essays, recollections, speeches, and other written content of Stephen 'Stepto' Toulouse, all loosely relating to his time spent as an employee at Microsoft.

It's not a long read, but a very enjoyable one. Stepto really sucks you into each experience and describes it in vivid detail (some may argue too much at times) and leaves you laughing or smiling or crying by the end.

I really can't recommend this enough if you're a geek
Jim Heivilin
Sep 03, 2012 Jim Heivilin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a collection of stories from his blog. The stories are great and I found myself thinking of similar events from my own life. It doesn't portray Microsoft as "The Great Evil" that some people believe it to be, it shows what life is like within a large corporation, similar to any other large organization.

It's a fairly quick read and his writing is easy to read and understand. There is some tech lingo but he explains it sufficiently for non-tech people to get his meaning.

I recommend this
John Girgis
Interesting book. A little of it was written in a very cringe-worthy way, and I'm not sure I got a lot more out of it than I would have just reading StepTo's blog. That said, it's an interesting look at the progression of life inside a corporate career at Microsoft, than it is an exploration of what makes Microsoft Microsoft.
Jorge Pinto
Queda claro cuando un libro lo escribe alguien que no es escritor. Esto se siente como una compilacion de blog posts amateur (que de hecho creo que lo es). Anécdotas y chismes que parece que no tocaron el escritorio de un editor. Vanity press, casi. Algunos pedazos interesantes de información sobre la vida y filosofía de Microsoft, pero nada que valga la pena.
Apr 21, 2011 Maria rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finished this in three days and enjoyed it largely due to Stephen Toulouse's conversational voice. Sometimes I felt like he was being diplomatic, but I'm not sure if that's because it's his nature or if it's because so much of his writing focuses on Microsoft, where he still works. The book, like its author, is genuinely likable, if not life-altering.
May 28, 2016 Ashley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was one of those blog turned book sorts of things, which was okay. I mean the stories were decent, but also like 10 years old in most cases, which made it a lot less appealing. If you already read his blog there is not really anything new here.
Taylor Fisher
Aug 30, 2011 Taylor Fisher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting look in side Microsoft from a man who's worked in the trenches there for years. I haven't really read Stepto's blog, so this was all new material to me and I enjoyed it. It is pretty short and a very quick read for a short trip.
Ali Maggs
Aug 30, 2011 Ali Maggs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really fun look at life inside Microsoft. The Xbox stuff was the most interesting element but there's a lot of good, funny and sometimes inspirational stories.
Jason David
I read this right after reading GATES. It's a great follow-up book. You get a clear window into Microsoft from the bottom up. Like GATES, it's very sympathetic to the man and the company.
John Walkenford
Mar 25, 2011 John Walkenford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Geek credentials certified. Got misty-eyed during the PAX chapter. Great book about 15 good years at Microsoft.
Oct 09, 2011 Ed rated it liked it
A compilation of often isolated stories following Stepto's progression through Microsoft. has some funny anecdotes and insight into the company.
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Stephen Toulouse, also known as Stepto, is the Director of Xbox LIVE Policy and Enforcement at Microsoft. He frequently represents Microsoft and Xbox Live in various media, including on Larry Hryb's "Major Nelson Radio" Xbox-related podcast, to discuss security and policy issues.

Prior to joining the Xbox team at Microsoft, Toulouse was the head of communications for security response with the Micr
More about Stephen Toulouse...

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