Recommended Readings: OLPC and Microsoft’s Financial Games

Posted in Finance, Microsoft, OLPC at 4:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

OLPC was left devastated by the corruption against it. Attempts to breathe life back into this project after the systematic sabotage have just got Ivan spilling the beans.

OLPC should be philosophically pure about its own machines. Being a non-profit that leverages goodwill from a tremendous number of community volunteers for its success and whose core mission is one of social betterment, it has a great deal of social responsibility. It should not become a vehicle for creating economic incentives for a particular vendor. It should not believe the nonsense about Windows being a requirement for business after the children grow up. Windows is a requirement because enough people grew up with it, not the other way around. If OLPC made a billion people grow up with Linux, Linux would be just dandy for business. And OLPC shouldn’t make its sole OS one that cripples the very hardware that supposedly set the project’s laptops apart: released versions of Windows can neither make good use of the XO power management, nor its full mesh or advanced display capabilities.

Read on because it’s an eye-opener. In other news, Naked Emperor Microsoft has Robert Cringely spilling some beans too.

This has everything to do with business and nothing at all to do with technology. Wearing my business reporter’s fedora, then, I’ll point you back a week or so to Microsoft’s most recent earnings announcement, which disappointed Wall Street. This is significant because it is hard to find a Wall Street analyst who remembers the last time Microsoft’s earnings were disappointing. It simply doesn’t happen. That’s because Microsoft has a myriad of tools for adjusting the numbers to look just right.

More about this here and here. Remember that Microsoft lost about 30 billion dollars in value after the Yahoo bid.

These are the truths you hardly find in the media, which typically has a separate agenda.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

This post is also available in Gemini over at:


If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one


  1. AlexH said,

    May 14, 2008 at 6:45 am


    I’m not convinced Microsoft “lost” $30B. “Cash balance” isn’t the same as “value”.

    If you want to look at value, look at price/earnings ratio or market cap. or something.

    The fact Microsoft’s cash balance went down is pretty easily explainable, e.g. buying Aquantive. Most people would not categorize acquisition as “loss”.

    To put this into perspective, Merrill Lynch wrote off almost $30B which helped trigger the global crisis in credit over sub-prime mortgages and is cutting thousands of jobs:


    Believe me, if Microsoft had made a loss anything like $30B, it definitely would not have been “ignored” in the media.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 14, 2008 at 6:58 am


    It was not ignored by the media. It was in the Wall Street Journal.

    To quote a recent response to it from a friend (a tad blunt):


    Welcome to the wacky world of trading, where a company’s perceived value
    is based on expectation, and that expectation can be manipulated with
    bullshit like Vapourware; dumping; profit forecasts based on wildly
    speculative (or downright dishonest) sales figures; buffering sales with
    “channel” partners (in crime); just the merest hint of a takeover;
    discrediting and sabotaging the competition; employing spin-doctors to
    artificially “sell” the idea that the company is thriving, through the
    use of marketing gobbledygook; or just plain old-fashioned lying through
    one’s teeth about a company’s future direction.

    That manipulation not only comes in many ways, but it comes from many
    places too, like right here in COLA for example. Witness how frantically
    DooFuS (in particular) flooded COLA with anti-Linux vitriol on the very
    day that the final OOXML votes were being cast. Coincidence? I think
    not. He may as well wear a badge that reads “Microsoft Shill”, it’s that
    obvious. Make no mistake, to him this is nothing personal, he’s merely
    doing his job, which is why he’s never discouraged, no matter how
    ridiculous or suspicious his behaviour, nor how decisively his vitriol
    is rebuked.

    What other possible motive could someone have for spending *years*
    sabotaging a group that exists to serve the purposes of an alternative
    to his chosen operating system? Surely he should be extolling the
    virtues of Windows in a /Windows/ group, not sleeping with the enemy.

    But that’s the way thugs and gangsters operate. They don’t play by the
    rules, they extort; threaten; bribe; manipulate; lie; attack and destroy
    to “succeed”, and then bray about it like a pack of hyenas, overwhelmed
    with “pride” in their path of destruction, too busy slavering over the
    spoils to worry about trivialities like morality. The Microsoft shills
    in this group are merely another arm of the Microsoft crime syndicate.

    And that’s exactly what Sweaty the Impaler does to further Microsoft’s
    cause, which is of course greed, so what better place to manipulate
    people than at the stock exchange, where greed blinds people against the
    menacing advances of manipulators like Ballmer.

    Basically the only difference between the stock market and the dog track
    is that, generally speaking, down at the track the dogs don’t trying to
    win by lying or ripping each other’s throats out.

    Sweaty the Impaler tried to fscking kill Google by attempting to eat
    (what he thought was) one of the weaker dogs in the race (cowards always
    attack the weak, just like hyenas), to become bigger and stronger, and
    eliminate some of the competition (typical of the “Embrace, Extend and
    Extinguish” paradigm). The ravenous punters got too excited and bet
    heavily on the Vole to win, but lost it all when Yahoo unexpectedly bit
    back, and sent the Vole whimpering back to the kennels, leaving Google
    to streak across the finish line. Poetic justice.

    That won’t stop the Vole, of course, much like the pesky lack of money
    doesn’t stop a drug addict from getting a fix. They’ll just keep mugging
    other innocent victims until they get what they want. The only way to
    “cure” that rabid dog, is to put it down.

  3. AlexH said,

    May 14, 2008 at 7:18 am


    Can you cite a specific WSJ story where they state that Microsoft have lost (specifically “lost”) $30B?

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 14, 2008 at 7:28 am


    Yesterday’s early relief rally reversed, and Microsoft’s value has now fallen by more than $30 billion since it unveiled its bid for Yahoo on February 1.


    Compare with what I wrote: “Remember that Microsoft lost about 30 billion dollars in value after the Yahoo bid.”

    I was actually wrong. It was *more* than 30 billion dollar. Mea cupla. :-)

What Else is New

  1. Five Years of António Campinos Coverage in Techrights (We Correctly Predicted His Presidency in March 2016)

    We've warned about António Campinos since March of 2016; well, António Campinos isn't just EPO President right now but he's also an oppressor who demonises the union of the EPO's staff

  2. In 2021 the EPO Works for Parasites Instead of Scientists (and It Cannot Even Hide That Anymore)

    Europe's second-largest institution is working for those who attack instead of create (or those who attack actual creators, with lousy and sketchy patents as ammunition)

  3. Links 1/3/2021: Manjaro ARM 21.02 and First Linux 5.12 RC Released

    Links for the day

  4. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, February 28, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, February 28, 2021

  5. On Gangstalking and Victim-Blaming

    Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock

  6. If the Web Can Be Increasingly Replaced (or Complemented) by Gemini and IPFS Etc., Then Large Monopolists Will Try to Dominate Those

    Monopolists and sociopaths won't be clapping and cheering for whatever stands a chance of replacing the Web (or Big Banks); if they ever embrace those replacements, it'll be to dominate and in turn undermine these

  7. Links 28/2/2021: Nitrux 1.3.8 and Kraft 0.96

    Links for the day

  8. Techrights Over 3 Internet Protocols and From the Command Line, Using Either Curl/Wget/Text Editor (Over WWW) or IPFS or Gemini

    A quick demo of how Techrights can be accessed without a browser, either over gemini:// or over http://

  9. The Command Line for Weather and Football Scores, Among Other Stuff

    A lot of stuff can be done from the command line and productivity (not to mention privacy) enhanced by automation and scripting over the Web (or even Gemini, as we shall show in a future video)

  10. You Know Gemini Space is Getting a Lot Bigger When You Need to Implement DDOS Protection

    Techrights is currently working on tools or programs that help detect and respond to DDOS attacks (or abusive over-consumption of pages) over gemini://

  11. The Fall of The Register

    A word of caution about The Register, a British publisher that nowadays does a lot of reputation laundering for Microsoft and Bill Gates (instead of news about actual technology, as opposed to clown computing, big brands, and oligarchs)

  12. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, February 27, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, February 27, 2021

  13. Links 27/2/2021: IPFS 0.8, OnionShare 2.3.1, and New Stuff in KDE

    Links for the day

  14. The Internet After Social Control Media (and Maybe After the World Wide Web Too)

    There seems to be a growing trend of protests and backlash against centralised Internet disservices; there's also growing dissatisfaction over bloat and spyware, which the Web rendered a 'norm'

  15. SCO's Darl McBride is Finished (Bankruptcy)

    Some news about the site and about the long-forgotten SCO, whose infamous old (and sacked) Darl McBride (responsible for decade-long attacks on Linux) loses everything, based on fresh legal documents

  16. IRC Proceedings: Friday, February 26, 2021

    IRC logs for Friday, February 26, 2021

  17. Links 26/2/2021: Wine 6.3, Genode OS Framework 21.02

    Links for the day

  18. Links 26/2/2021: GNU Poke 1.0 is Out and Rocky Linux Leaves Microsoft GitHub

    Links for the day

  19. Microsoft's Status in Web Servers is So Bad That It Has Fallen Off Charts, is Now Partly Delisted

    In several categories or criteria Microsoft is no longer even listed by Netcraft; the share has become rather minuscule during the pandemic, which convinced more companies to explore expense-cutting moves

  20. We Take Away Your Freedom for Your Own Safety...

    People are herded like cattle and protest/dissent will be demonised as part of the new norm; what will be the cost of the pandemic and will resistance to the status quo ever be permitted to resume?

  21. EPO President Pushes Illegal Software Patents in South America (Over the Telephone With a Misleading New Puff Piece)

    The EPO's "news" section has become worse than a form of distraction (from the EPO's internal rot); it celebrates illegal and unlawful practices, spreading them to other continents

  22. The Free Software Foundation Warns Against Using Twitter

    Richard Stallman said Twitter was OK because it was possible to use it without proprietary software; that's no longer the case, so the Free Software Foundation (FSF) speaks out against it. It speaks about it more than 3 months after the problem became a known one and also an irreversible one (maybe Twitter would have reversed the decision if the media or the FSF actually spoke about it early enough).

  23. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, February 25, 2021

    IRC logs for Thursday, February 25, 2021

  24. Stéphane Bortzmeyer Explains Gemini Protocol (February 2021)

    A recent talk from Stéphane Bortzmeyer about Gemini and what it is for (or why)

  25. Links 26/2/2021: Istio 1.7.8 Announced, Blender 2.92, Firebird 3.0 Language Reference, FSF Against Twitter

    Links for the day

  26. Special Thanks to Mogz

    Credit where it's due to Mogz

  27. Modifying WordPress to Include Gemini Links in All Articles (Assuming a Canonical URL Form)

    In order to promote the departure from the World Wide Web (where possible and suitable; sites with text don't typically need Web-like features) one can promote the analogous pages in one's Gemini capsule; we suggest a way of doing so in WordPress (the most widely used CMS)

  28. Links 25/2/2021: RHEL for Open-Source Infrastructure, GNOME 40 Beta, LXPanel 0.10.1

    Links for the day

  29. IBM and Qt Don't Understand Free Software and They Now Impose Terms and Conditions on Who Qualifies for Use of Free Software Free of Charge

    IBM and Qt Don't Understand Free Software and They Now Impose Terms and Conditions on Who Qualifies for Use of Free Software Free of Charge

  30. Techrights Gemini Capsule, Now With Over 35,000 Pages and Files

    Blog posts combined with static (plain text) files are now 36,000+ in number, just for Gemini protocol alone; that number keeps growing as our conversion proceeds and evolves (our software will be released under terms of the AGPLv3)

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts