In a week of big powwows for developers and gamers, the one item that mesmerized me the most wasn't a news story at all.

Fortune contributor Kevin Kelleher, dreaming out loud, is suggesting that Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) acquire Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) and install Netflix CEO Reed Hastings as a co-CEO to share the helm with Steve Ballmer.

It's highly unlikely to happen, but the scenario does make sense. Ballmer is coming under fire, given Microsoft's meandering ways during the software giant's lost decade, and Netflix would provide the sizzle and Hastings the vision that Mr. Softy appears to be running low on at the moment.

A Netflix buyout wouldn't come cheap, but this is also the same company that had no problem overpaying for aQuantive and, more recently, Skype. If shareholders continue to turn the heat up at Microsoft for change, this may just be the response that saves Ballmer's hide and reignites investor interest in Microsoft as the growth stock it used to be.

Briefly in the news
And now let's take a quick look at some of the other stories that shaped our week.

  • Pacific Crest raised its rating on eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY). It also has a $40 price target, but there's no reserve price set. (That last point's just a lame joke for eBay regulars.)
  • Online advertiser QuinStreet (Nasdaq: QNST) was caught jaywalking when it revealed that it expects flat year-over-year revenue growth for the next two quarters. I guess QuinStreet isn't keeping up with the market, since an eMarketer study pegs a 20% spike in online advertising growth this year.
  • XOMA's (Nasdaq: XOMA) once-promising 052 is dead as a potential diabetes treatment after an uninspiring clinical trial. There may be other uses for 052, but this one could've been -- and should've been -- huge.
  • Beauty retailer Ulta Salon (Nasdaq: ULTA) posted better-than-expected quarterly results, issuing upbeat guidance for the current period. Lookin' good, Ulta.

Until next week, I remain,

Rick Munarriz