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Date:      Mon, 17 Apr 2000 17:36:27 -0500
From:      "G. Adam Stanislav" <adam@whizkidtech.net>
To:        <chat@FreeBSD.ORG>
Subject:   RE: M$ anti-trust case
Message-ID:  <3.0.6.32.20000417173627.0089d490@mail85.pair.com>
In-Reply-To: <000001bfa8a9$33133760$021d85d1@youwant.to>
References:  <Pine.NEB.3.96.1000417130556.66799B-100000@shell-1.enteract.com>

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At 13:12 17-04-2000 -0700, David Schwartz wrote:
>	Actually, anything MS does to make Windows worse, less competitive, or less
>useful helps the consumer as it encourages other companies to develop
>alternatives and superior products.

Then why isn't everybody using FreeBSD?

The whole point of the anti-trust case is that Microsoft used dirty tricks
to undermine competition. MS success is not based on a superior product. It
is based on exclusive contracts with major computer manufacturers to
include "free" Windows on the system.

How many times have I asked local people here who call for help why they
are using Windows? "You mean there is something else?"

How many times have I asked computer science students of the local
technical college if they were taught Unix and got a blank stare ("What's
Unix?")!

And, even, how many people think that Bill Gates wrote DOS? That he is some
kind of a programming genius!

Nothing Microsoft does encourages other companies to develop alternatives
or superior products. Microsoft has always thrived on creating *inferior*
products. The true progress in computing does not come from being a better
programmer: It comes from developing a new and original idea for a new and
original product. That is the hard part. Anyone (well, almost anyone), for
example, can write another Photoshop, but it took Adobe to write the first
one because they had the vision for it. It was easy for Microsoft to then
write their Picture Publisher and sell it cheaper. They did not have to
spend any effort in coming up with the idea, they just had to copy the
idea, and create an *inferior* product which then they could sell cheaper
(luckily this is actually a poor example because they were unable to unseat
Adobe).

Where Microsoft literally hurt and keeps hurting consumers is not in
producing superior products but by taking other people's ideas and
producing a similar product cheaper (since they did not have the costs of
developing the product, only the cost of emulating it).

Consequently, companies stopped bothering coming up with new and original
ideas because they knew that when they introduce something revolutionary,
M$ would undercut them. Hence no more new ideas. There has been no
revolutionary software developed in the last ten years. Only bug fixes, and
perhaps some new features to the same old stuff.

Instead of coming up with new things, all we get is software that tries to
integrate many old things into one product, resulting in software that is
too complex to maintain and debug, software that requires megabytes of
memory instead of kilobytes. Software no longer does one thing and does it
well. Instead it does it all, and does it poorly.

Take, for example, the software I am using at this very moment (since I am
in Windbloats right now): Eudora. It is an "integrated" piece of crap. It
receives email, it sends email, it displays email, it has a built-in
editor. And it crashes a lot several times a day.

What it should be doing is let some other software handle the receiving of
the email. It should let yet another software send the email. It should
probably display the email on its own, but it should let me use any editor
I want to write what I am writing right now. That's how mutt does it when I
am in FreeBSD.

This kind of integration stifles productivity and competition. It just
takes too many resources to develop software that does it all. Unix has
pine, and mutt, and many others, simply because their developers can
concentrate on doing one thing and one thing only.

M$ has robbed us of KISS and replaced it with KILL (keep it large, lumpy).

Adam
-----------------------------------------------------------
"I think, therefore I am."
                    - Seventeenth Century Philosophy

"I publish what I think, therefore I have."
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