I Call That a Real Supply Chain Train Wreck …

Courtesy of Ryder Daniels, I came across this article in PC World that describes a literal and figurative supply chain train wreck. According to the story, "Microsoft is suing U.S.-based cargo-delivery service DHL Express for allegedly losing 21,600 Xbox game consoles because of a train derailment in Texas … The Xboxes were en route from a Microsoft office in McAllen, Texas, to Long Beach, California, for eventual delivery to Hong Kong at the time of the loss, which occurred on Oct. 13, 2007, according to court papers. Flextronics Industrial in Hong Kong was the intended recipient." This reminds me of the various pictures of container ship accidents that make the rounds every so often (e.g., "your order has been bumped" -- literally off the ship). But on a more serious note, I can see how an accident like this could be extremely disruptive to Microsoft. After all, when you're shipping such a junker of an operating system as Vista, it's critical that you carefully manage operating cash flow elsewhere in the business. And on that note, I'm happy to say that all the posts you've read of late have been typed on my new MacBook, which is causing a Vista machine that cost three times as much -- and is more than three times as slow -- to gather dust.

- Jason Busch

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