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Billwatch Snippets Database – Part IV

Snippet: Recently, a Microsoft evaluation of the Linux OS mentioned lack of applications as a detrimental feature of this OS.

Linux
becoming mainstream removes the barriers for a sofar absent effect of
commoditization of the platform by java. Pure java applications running
on the expensive Windows platform can without modification run on the
cheap Linux OS. The same effect would help newly developed platforms,
such as BeOS today, to gain entry in the OS market. If a large suit of
applications were written in pure java, the primary barriers to
marketing a new OS would be removed and the market would be
commoditized.

On itself, Java removes technological barriers to
standardization. In combination with Linux, it provides a
cost-efficient alternative. There may not be a suitably fast JVM
available for Linux today, but Sun is now half-supporting the Linux
port of their JDK, Kaffe is gradually developing out of beta, the
TowerJ server side java compiler beats all JVM’s, and IBM – the creator
of the fastest JVM on the Windows platform – has already made its fast
jikes java compiler available for Linux.

Thus Microsoft has
good reason to use its hold over the largest development community -
that for Windows – to beat them into not writing pure java
applications. Their monopoly rents are at stake here, and they have
good reason to prevent standardization and the associated
commoditization in order to keep their markets free from competition
and their prices high.

The latest is that Microsoft is “opening” their java “interoperability technologies” by giving them for free to developers:

Microsoft
Corp. today announced the immediate, royalty-free availability of the
Developer Tools Interoperability Kit. This new kit provides development
tools vendors with specifications and test software to enable
Microsoft’s Java language interoperability technologies to be
incorporated into third-party compilers and virtual machines.

If
Microsoft were true to its embrace of openness and standards it would
have tried to cooperate with other companies and organizations to add
to the definition of the java standard in order to give customers the
benefits they perceived. As they did not bother with any such attempt,
it is clear that Microsoft does not underwrite the very process of
standardization.

As for wording, Microsoft’s “openness” has
nothing to do with the usual connotation of allowing third parties to
have a say in the direction and possibly implementation of the latest
developments, it merely means “royalty-free”. Their wording is
therefore misleading.

Microsoft Opens Java Integration Technologies
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/1999/May99/JavaIntpr.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-20 14:01:01

Snippet: The CEO’s invited to Microsoft’s third
annual CEO summit may be gullible where it concerns Microsoft’s
technology marketing presented at the occasion, but one can trust that
they do understand the idea of markets.

Therefore it is not
surprising that Gates felt he had some explaining to do about
Microsoft’s recent wave of investments in cable companies.

According
to Gates account, Microsoft’s sole purpose in investing is to help the
companies they invest in, to create the infrastructure that creates
demand for software later that Microsoft can then fulfill. Gates – in
one of his infamous memory lapses – forgot to tell that Microsoft made
it a condition of the investments that the telecommunications companies
now agree to buy Microsoft software later.

Gates Defends Telecom Investments
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/headlines/ap/technology/story.html?…

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-20 23:18:15

Snippet:

The Register
By Graham Lea

The
Microsoft PR machine claims that the CEO Summit hosted by Chairman
Gates would not serve as an occasion to hawk Microsoft products, but
this account of a Gates speech, with unfortunately no published text,
says otherwise. Besides the sales pitches, the speech aimed at sprucing
up Gates’ image as technological visionary along the lines of his
forgettable “Business @ the Speed of Thought” book published earlier
this year.

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-05-21 04:51:22

Snippet: When the biased Mindcraft benchmark was
released I predicted that we would see more reports like these. Now
this has become official: “I have now upped the focus on it. I’ve got a
performance team prepared to benchmark it every which way.” says vice
president Jim Allchin. Given Allchin’s past of bringing forged evidence
in the form of a video tape in court, there is little doubt about what
to expect when he says “every which way”.

Microsoft treatment of
the Mindcraft forgery is a case in point. Mindcraft’s numbers were dead
wrong as a result of mis-tuning Linux. When PC Week and PC Magazine did
benchmarks that proved Mindcraft’s numbers wrong but their estimate
which platform came out of the test fastest, Microsoft proclaimed that
these results corroborated Mindcraft’s test. If you read the Mindcraft
test again, you’ll notice that Mindcraft claims that their numbers
apply to the operating systems generally, and not only to the specific
hardware configuration they tested. Another false claim. According to
ZDNN, Microsoft claims that the four-way server Mindcraft tested is the
kind “used to run a small business”. Weird claim, given that NT servers
are especially prolific on one-processor departmental servers.

Yes, expect Microsoft do go against Linux “every which way”.

Linux draws Microsoft interest
http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,2263211,00.html

Hit team’ drives MS plan to bludgeon Linux with benchmarks
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990521-000006.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-21 17:26:10

Snippet: Microsoft has classified nearly all
documents in the Caldera case to confidential status to prevent the
press getting its hands on them. After a long fight in court, the
number of documents thus classified is now down to 40, and news
organizations have a better opportunity to report on the intentions
that were driving specific actions of Microsoft’s.

Earlier
situations in which Microsoft’s urge for secrecy turned out to be
unwarranted were the DoJ’s access to Windows and MSIE sales data (the
DoJ had to go to court three times to get them as Microsoft went so far
as to return – what judge Jackson called – “gibberish” the second
time), and the deposits that a court of appeals originally kept behind
closed doors at the request of Microsoft in spite of the letter of the
law.

Caldera 2, Microsoft 0
http://www.wired.com/news/news/politics/story/19809.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-21 18:25:05

Snippet: It is quite strange that Microsoft’s
lawyers and spokespersons tell us that “paradigm shifts” happen every
six months in the computer industry and that Microsoft’s position in
the PC market might in such a shift be cast aside from the center of
attention as were IBM’s mainframes, as Bill Gates thinks that the
market is steady and growing:

The PC's growing popularity
isn't surprising. Prices have fallen sharply while the power of the
hardware and software has kept increasing. Consumers and businesses
everywhere are rushing to get on the Web, and the PC makes that easy.
But what really sets the PC apart is the incredible empowerment and
flexibility it offers in a single, economical package.

...

For
most people at home and at work, the PC will remain the primary
computing tool; you'll still want a big screen and a keyboard to
balance your investment portfolio, write a letter to Aunt Agnes, view
complex Web pages, and you'll need plenty of local processing power for
graphics, games and so on. But the PC will also work in tandem with
other cool devices.

Gates latest book has been described as
“boring” by those who have taken the time to read it. I haven’t taken
the time to obtain a copy of the book, but reading Gates’ Newsweek
article I have an idea of how boring he can be.

Newsweek: Why the PC Will Not Die
by Bill Gates
http://www.newsweek.com/nw-srv/printed/us/st/sc0422_1.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-24 22:51:46

Snippet: I browsed a bit through the transcript
of Gates’ speech at the 3rd Microsoft CEO Summit. It may well contain
some nice quotes, but otherwise it merely presents the old “paperless
office” ideas in a form that allows for dropping the names of Microsoft
products. Waste of time.

1999 CEO Summit Keynote
Seattle, Washington
May 19, 1999
by Bill Gates
http://www.microsoft.com/billgates/speeches/05-19ceosummit.htm

The press release is more fun:

The
CEO Summit was established in response to business leaders growing
interest in IT issues. Many CEOs, while recognizing the business
benefits made possible through the deployment of complete IT solutions,
are also beginning to view technology as a strategic business tool. As
such, these leaders are looking to become more knowledgeable about IT
issues, so they can be empowered to take part in the technology
decisions that have the potential to shape the future of their
organizations. The CEO Summit provides these leaders with an
opportunity to expand their IT knowledge in the company of peers from
around the world. Gates, who recently authored "Business @ the Speed of
Thought," a book about success in the digital age, and his company's
shared mission has been to create technology that removes barriers
between information and people.

Bill Gates Envisions Strategy of “Knowledge Workers Without Limits” At Microsoft’s Third CEO Summit

press release:
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/1999/may99/CEOSummpr.htm

introduction:
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/05-19ceosummit.htm

When looking up the transcript of Gates’ speech, I noticed that the menu contained an entry “Philantropy”. When following the link I came at the home page of the “Bill and Melinda Gates Foundations”.

The
marketing organization that created the site had a pretty clear idea of
its goals: while waiting for the pictures to arrive I read that the
main picture had a tag "images of children". Always does it, doesn’t it?

The different images are to tell the story of the different foundations and there is only the following introductory text:

Bill
and Melinda Gates hope to make an enduring contribution toward
increasing access to innovations in education, technology, and world
health. More than six billion dollars in endowments have been set aside
for these causes.

As I doubt that Melinda has anything to
saw about Gates’ billions, I would attribute the whole setup to Bill
himself. On the whole, I would say that Gates campaign to make himself
loved isn’t executed subtly.

Highly recommended browsing!

http://www.gatesfoundations.org/

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-24 23:34:21

Snippet: Falling stock prices may have triggered
the painful awareness at Microsoft that their claims on ferocious and
powerful competitors and paradigm shifts every six months might be
believed by those that tend to believe their statements generally.
Gullible investors may suddenly come to consider why the company is
deemed to be worth sixty years of its present profits.

So now
they go in reverse gear and the present company line is to evangelize
the idea that the PC is here to stay. Nicely coinciding with Gates’
article in Newsweek, Microsoft published a Q&A session (haha) with
head of the Developer Group Paul Maritz.

Q: There has been a lot of speculation lately that the PC is dead. What's your view?

Maritz: The
PC will still be at the center of computing for most people, but it
will work alongside numerous companion devices and appliances. There is
an incredible investment in the PC today. Most businesses have them and
about half of all homes have them. We believe the future of computing
will include many different devices and multiple PCs, all connected and
working together. The term "personal computer," or "PC," as well as the
concept behind it, is morphing. It's not an "either/or" argument, it's
"either/and." Through our investments in Windows CE and WebTV, we are
helping to extend the PC into this new "PC-plus" world.

Uh
oh, this sounds as if Microsoft’s position in the PC market can be
transferred to emerging markets for intelligent peripherals. Not quite
the picture they painted while being in the courtroom.

One
effect of the trial delays is that Microsoft’s claim that AOL is
cooperating with the DoJ in holding back its support for Netscape’s
browser until they can unleash it after Microsoft is broken up gets
ever less likely. Another effect is that Microsoft spokespersons get
too much opportunity to contradict themselves and their company’s
witnesses in the press, thereby further reducing the credibility of the
company’s defense.

Q&A: Microsoft’s Paul Maritz Talks
About the Future of the Internet, the Evolution of Personal Computing,
and Microsoft’s Commitment to Software Developers

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/05-24maritzqa.htm

Update:

Re-reading Maritz’ statements, I found another one that is of interest:

Developers
face many challenges, but their need for comprehensive, integrated and
interoperable solutions are at the top of the list. They also have
incredible opportunities, greater than we've seen in the two-decade
history of the PC industry. The ability to turn their ideas into
reality and reach millions of end users has never been more real. But
to do that, they need an infrastructure, and they need leadership from
companies like Microsoft, which provide some of the building blocks
central to creating great products.

If you didn’t notice, I’ll make the anaphorical jump more explicit and add some emphasis: “Developers .. need leadership from companies like Microsoft.”

I
can understand the need for well-defined standards on which
“developers” can build, where I consider a “standard” something that
can not be unilaterally changed. But saying that developers need
“leadership”, sure pushes things towards an ideological interpretation
that I dislike. Think of what role the concept of “leadership” plays in
economic science, then think of what political movements emphasize the
role of “leadership”.

I admit cutting away some context, and will quote it here to make it easier for you to consider its truth in isolation:

Microsoft
is only one of the companies trying to provide leadership, and it is
this incredibly intense competition that helps drive the industry
forward at a pace it has never seen before.

Maritz is not talking about some “coming out on top” here, but about “providing leadership”. Brrr.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-25 23:26:07

Snippet: Microsoft-Caldera antitrust judge skeptical
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,0-37058,00.html?st.ne.lh..ni

Java Lawsuit: Judge Says Microsoft Infringed On Copyright
http://www.crn.com/dailies/digest/breakingnews.asp?ArticleID=5500

Split decision in tentative Java rulings
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,37017,00.html?st.ne.fd.gif.d

(Would you believe that the last two articles describe the same event?)

Update:

Win98 and IE broke Sun copyright – judge rules
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990526-000003.html

Think of this next time you hear a Microsoft executive speaking harshly of software piracy.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-26 09:33:05

Snippet: According to StatMarket, which monitors
over 25 million daily visitors to over 79,000 independent Web sites,
the Linux operating system has experienced 25% growth since the
beginning of 1999. The percentage of Internet surfers using Linux is
currently a whopping 0.22%, up from 0.16% in January of this year.

The
different Microsoft Windows operating systems together account for
nearly 95% of all OS’s with WebTV bringing the total of Microsoft OS’s
used to browse the Internet to above 96%.

Lots of Noise, but not Numbers on Linux
http://www.statmarket.com/SM?c=WeekStat

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-26 13:30:29

Snippet: Unlike earlier IBM witness John
Soyring, who spoke mostly of networking effects operative in making or
breaking an operating system, IBM witness Garry Norris is going to the
heart of the matter: Microsoft’s usage of its monopoly power to dictate
licensing conditions.

This is likely to become dirty.

The Register: IBM ‘dossier’ to detail MS Windows threats
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990527-000004.html

PC Week: MS-DOJ:
Did Microsoft threaten IBM? – IBM exec will allegedly testify that
Microsoft warned that it would deny Big Blue a Windows license

http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,1014829,00.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-27 13:46:20

Snippet: Here are some fragments from an article in the Washington Post (by an Associated Press writer):

Garry
Norris, the IBM manager who will be one of the government's final
witnesses in its antitrust trial with Microsoft, contended in sworn
testimony Thursday that Microsoft exerted pressure on IBM to cut its
sales of OS/2, the software product that competed directly with Windows
until the popularity of OS/2 waned in late 1994 and 1995.

He
also testified that major computer makers, such as Compaq Computer
Corp., agreed not to sell OS/2 on their machines because of threats
from Microsoft.

...

Norris said that weeks before the
August 1995 rollout of an important new version of Windows, Microsoft
threatened to end negotiations, which were at a standstill. The
companies finally reached an agreed price, ``15 minutes before the
launch of Windows 95,'' he said.

IBM had paid only $9 for
earlier versions of Windows, what it believed to be the lowest price
paid by any company. But Microsoft wanted about $46 for Windows 95 --
much more than IBM believed some other computer makers were paying.

``Microsoft
told us repeatedly, `Because you compete with us, you're going to get
unfavorable terms and conditions,''' Norris said.

Norris said IBM's costs rose from $40 million to $220 million.

The
Washington Post seems to have a publishing scheme whereby articles are
released under the same URL time and again. Unfortunately, I do not
know if they have a long-term URL and, if true, what it is. If anyone
knows a permanent URL of the article (and possibly also of the
Washington Post article that preceded this one about AOL/Netscape and
the rise of Linux undermining the DoJ’s case), I’d like to hear of it.

The Washington Post: IBM Executive Tells of Threat
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/business/longterm/microsoft/micro.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-27 22:34:39

Snippet: Reader grchism@dpc.net sent in the following:

http://www.microsoft.com/mac/news/applems.htm

"As
pioneers in the personal computing revolution, Bill Gates and Apple
cofounder Steve Jobs have often shared the spotlight in presenting a
new vision for the future of computing. Even so, it surprised many
people at the 1997 Boston MacWorld when they announced a broad product
and technology development agreement.

People talked about this
being the beginning of a great relationship when in fact, a great
relationship had been going on for years and years. For those of you
not familiar with this relationship, or for those who just want to
reminisce, here are several links to historical reviews."

It
also presents a list of things that Microsoft has done for Apple during
their “great relationship”. But it doesn’t mention any of Apple’s
contributions to the relationship. What is most irritating is the fact
on that on each page it claims to be “The whole story”.

Also http://www.microsoft.com/mac/news/years4.htm
covering Microsoft/Apple history between July 1992 and January 1997
returns a 404 error. Perhaps that was the period that Microsoft and
Apple was suing each other and trying to find a polite way to beat
their shoes on the table and yell “We will bury you”

Thought you might like this for your collection.

It
seems that the missing link is now fixed and you can now see at page
four of “Microsoft and Apple through the years” that no lawsuit (that
Paul Maritz called “patent terrorism”, apparently of significant
concern to Microsoft) seems to have taken place.

Now that I have seen the “Microsoft MacTopia home” I can’t wait to see how they are going to do the same to Linux.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-28 09:44:22

Snippet: Two articles by Graham Lea on MS’s present “embrace and smother” activities:

The Register: Maritz at TechEd – still embracing and smothering
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990528-000006.html

The Register: MS play the standards game with BizTalk
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990528-000005.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-28 10:15:22

Snippet: Apparently, ProComp – the
“pro-competition” action on behalf of several companies that consider
themselves cornered by Microsoft’s ability to abuse its monopoly – has
held a press conference May 27th.

The statement “Just the Facts
- AOL-Netscape is a diversion, not a defense” elaborates somewhat on
Microsoft’s puzzling claims that the merge of AOL and Netscape changes
anything in the relevant markets: Microsoft’s monopoly market on
desktop operating systems and the browser market. In the light of the
latter, one should think of the website visiting OS statistics
mentioned here a couple of days ago: nearly half the visitors were
using Windows98, that is, they MUST use Microsoft’s Internet Explorer
at least for some tasks. This is not changed by the deal.

Furthermore,
given that Microsoft includes the price of its browser functionality in
the price of its operating system, it makes no business sense for AOL
to release a competitive product providing browsing functionality, as
customers have already paid up for a Microsoft’s browsing functionality
by buying Windows.

The statement contains several quotes from
former federal judge Robert Bork and former director of the FTC Bureau
of Competition Kevin Arquit.

ProComp: Just the Facts AOL-Netscape is a diversion, not a defense
http://www.procompetition.org/xp/p-headlines/i-current/a-927835429/p_article.view

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-28 18:33:07

Snippet: Ever heard of “VHS Inc”? Windows has so
often been compared to VHS that we should expect to find such a
company. Both VHS and Windows satisfy a condition like the following:

The
establishment of an open standard gives customers confidence and allows
manufacturers to compete, innovate and differentiate their products
with less risk.

However, where they differ is that there is
no open market for Windows. Windows pricing is secret and is determined
only partly on quantity. The additional commercial activities of the
buyer – e.g. using its own or third party software – also weigh in.

Furthermore,
VHS is standard not only by way of being a monopoly product, but also
in the way of not changing, whereas Windows is continually changed due
to a multitude of factors – e.g. bundling software for the latest
market Microsoft is determined to take over – and the hardware
companies have little or nothing to say about the software they bundle.
Phone appliance companies probably want the software to evolve, but
according to their own design, not that of some outsider that
subsequently forces it on them.

[W]hat motivates Symbian's
parents more than anything is that, as computing and wireless telephony
converge, they do not wish to end up like PC makers-low-margin
assemblers that are little more than a distribution channel for
Microsoft's intellectual property. As the mobile-phone firms see it,
Symbian should ensure that they stay in control of their future. And
the licence fees that will go to Symbian, rather than Microsoft, are a
nice way of keeping all that money in the family.

The Economist: Symbian’s friends
http://www.economist.com/editorial/freeforall/29-5-99/index_wb4468.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-29 08:09:24

Snippet: You can make Microsoft pay one dollar to Kosovo relief efforts by downloading a WMT file with Beastie Boys music.

Smart
action: Microsoft’s proprietary technology is pushed through charity
and because of tax reductions American tax payers are going to pay for
part of the marketing cost.

Microsoft: Free Beastie Boys Music Download to Aid Kosovo Relief Effort
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/05-26kosovo.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-30 23:55:09

Snippet: The head of Microsoft’s Research
Department and co-author of the book “The Road Ahead” – something that
is mentioned inside, but not on the cover – was apparently more
enthusiastic about his hobbies than Microsoft’s research, and that kept
him from the office a significant amount of the time.

At least, this would be understandable: escaping boring tasks and doing what one likes is what one gets rich for, right?

Time magazine: Microsoft technology chief departs
http://biz.yahoo.com/rf/990530/bg.html

Update:

The Register: MS dilettante research head ousted in Ballmer purge
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990531-000005.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-31 06:47:37

Snippet: From http://linux.de/ :

Die
Rheinland-Pf�lzische Landesregierung erh�lt Gelegenheit, zu dem
umstrittenen Kooperationsvertrag mit Microsoft Stellung zu nehmen. In
einer Podiumsdiskussion am LinuxTag werden sich die Verantwortlichen
dazu �u�ern.

Insbesondere bei den von Ministerp�sident Kurt
Beck vorgegebenen Ziele der Ausbildungs- und Qualifizierungsprogramme
f�r die Bereiche Schulen, Hochschulen und berufliche Ausbildung, bei
den Anwendungsm�glichkeiten in privaten Betrieben und Haushalten und
bei der Vernetzung von Dienststellen in der �ffentlichen Verwaltung
verspiele das Land gro�e Chancen, wenn es Linux ignoriere und seine
Zukunft in der Abh�ngigkeit von Microsoft-Programmen zu finden glaube,
erkl�rte ein LinuxTag Sprecher.

Earlier French Linux
enthusiasts informed their government of the cheap alternative to the
Microsoft monopoly. This resulted in a cooperation of the government
with the AFUL to introduce Linux, and open source software in general,
in the educational system: http://www.aful.org/presse/CP-MENRT.html

It
is about time that such voices are heard, as many European governments
are presently extending their embrace, and thereby ratification, of
Microsoft’s monopoly.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-31 14:41:55

Snippet: Microsoft president Ballmer expects
StarOffice to disappear, whereby the market for office suites, that is
already seriously dominated by Microsoft, will further grow towards
monopoly.

OEM’s can license StarOffice far cheaper than MS
Office and many Linux users such as myself have discovered that
StarOffice allows them to do everything they wish an Office suite to do
- which is often merely reading their managers’ documents or providing
simple documents themselves.

Naturally, Mr. Ballmer would gladly
see a package with such price/performance marks disappear so he
“predicts” that this will indeed happen. He effectively tells potential
customers to focus on the ability of StarDivision to withstand
Microsoft’s market power, rather than on product quality.

Mr.
Ballmer made his remarks when he followed in Mr. Gates’ steps to work
on European government leaders to make them adopt Microsoft’s monopoly.

You can read an account (in German) at: http://futurezone.orf.at/futurezone.orf?read=detail&id=1387

A slashdot discussion can be found at:
http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=99/05/31/1413221&mode=thread

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-05-31 18:12:13

Snippet: The Register: MS finalises Nextel stake
by Graham Lea
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990601-000001.html
By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-01 09:03:32

Snippet: It’s a sorry sight to see the display
of technological incompetence of Microsoft’s army of lawyers in court.
Clearly, these people don’t even grasp the fundamental difference
between file and function. One would think that someone among those
almost 30,000 employees must have been able and willing to educate
Microsoft’s lawyers since they questioned Felten for the first time,
but as their questions have not changed since last time, clearly nobody
volunteered for the task.

The following article extensively discusses the interrogation:

The Register: DoJ’s ‘Punch’ beats MS’ ‘Judy’
by Graham Lea
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990601-000017.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-01 20:13:45

Snippet: Releasing a stand-alone version of
MSIE, Gates declaring that the PC is not under pressure from appliances
- but the latter must be connected to, and are therefore dependent on
the former -, Gates writing in his latest book how advanced Microsoft’s
accounting practices are, contrary to what their apparently not very
informed economical witness Richard Schmalensee had come to believe,
and an IBM witness recounting that Microsoft told IBM to buy at retail
if they were so persistent in producing operating systems themselves to
co-exist with Windows.

As mentioned earlier, Microsoft’s lawyers
lack basic knowledge about software and Microsoft officials apparently
have not attempted to use the past couple of months to remedy this
situation.

Sarcasm isn’t pretty, but Microsoft seems to catalyse it in a lot of commentators today.

ProComp: What They Forgot to Tell You
(A “memorandum” to Microsoft’s lawyers.)
http://www.procompetition.org/xp/p-headlines/i-current/a-928267573/p_article.view

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-02 00:48:32

Snippet: Not only Linux firms like Redhat, VA
Linux Solutions, LinuxCare, and SuSE hire Linux experts, also service
and systems companies like HP, SAP, Oracle and IBM are hiring.

The latest company to jump on the bandwagon is Microsoft:

PRODUCT MANAGER
[Job Code: N05rc-e3 ]

Division:
Windows Marketing & Developer Relations

Primary
responsibilities include competitive analysis of Linux, both for
providing product planning for the development team and for technical
assistance to Microsoft's sales force. This is a key position within
Microsoft, and very high visibility, both within and outside the
company. Qualifications include very strong technical skills in both
Unix and Windows NT and excellent writing skills. Some PR and sales or
marketing experience would be helpful. A Master's or Bachelors in
business administration is desirable.

Job Location: Redmond, Washington

If you want to learn more, you can look up the job description.

Update:

Mark
Hinds informed me, that as of June 2, the link has been replaced with
list of over a thousand potential positions. As I found when Microsoft
twice “upgraded” their NT/Linux comparison without comment, it is a
good thing to archive what they publish as it tends to disappear
without notice when people find it odd.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-02 01:03:38

Snippet: Apparently, we are moving back to the
era when the phone companies determined what machinery one was allowed
to connect to the network and prohibited everything else.

I
guess, something like Bellsouth’s discrimination against Linux is what
Microsoft has in mind when globally buying into cable companies.

Vide
this account of a Linux user that was denied an ADSL connection as he
didn’t run an “approved” operating system, even though he didn’t need
any help from Bellsouth’s engineers to set up his system.

http://www.devzero.org/bellsouthadsl

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-02 15:20:47

Snippet: Probably due to a long time manic
obsession with destroying Netscape as a company – as witnessed e.g. by
the Ballmer quote on cutting their revenues – Microsoft today fails to
distinguish between markets – which is what antitrust is about, and the
well-being of specific competitors.

Government witness and
economist Franklin Fisher’s observed that given the price of other
portals, the price AOL paid for Netscape seems to be determined
primarily by the value of Netscape’s Netcenter, and the browser
apparently has little value. By the way, with the next version of
Netscape’s browser having become open source, this is exactly that
Microsoft’s ideologists on intellectual property should expect.

Mark Murray, Microsoft’s spokesperson for the trial, commented:

I long for the day that my four-year-old company is so irrevocably broken that it can only be sold for $10 billion.

Mr.
Murray here clearly displays his incompetence in dealing with the
relevant issues of an antitrust trial. Whereas the relevant matter is
the situation in – and relationship between – the OS and browser
markets, Mr. Murray seems to believe it is about Netscape’s
shareholders.

I got the quote from:

Netscape Loses Again, Despite AOL Purchase
http://www.32bitsonline.com/news.php3?news=news/199906/nb199906022&page=1

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-02 23:51:39

Snippet: Government witness Franklin Fisher
noted that Gates has recently publicly stated that the PC is going to
be at the center of a network of appliances, rather than being replaced
by them as was proposed by Microsoft’s defense in court.

Microsoft defense lawyer Michael Lacovara went over the edge by asking the question: "Isn't that exactly what you'd expect Mr. Gates to say, given what his business is?"

I
say over the edge, because if Mr. Lacovara is willing to dismiss Mr.
Gates’ public statements, he is not only further damaging Gates’
tarnished image, but also undermining a significant amount of
Microsoft’s defense exhibits. Many of the exhibits that were to show
that there is healthy competition in the software industry were
statements from competitors taken from websites and advertisements in
trade rags. What will be the effect of Lacovara’s demarcation criterium
on this part of the defense?

Second, Lacovara asked whether
Fisher’s expert testimony could be influenced by the possible interests
of possible clients of the consulting company of which he is chairman
of the board. Mr. Lacovara apparently hoped to connect Mr. Fisher with
Microsoft witness Gordon Eubanks who was found to have held a nice
e-mail conversation about his public support for Microsoft and who in
the process hoped that Microsoft would remedy the situation in which a
competitor of his was benefitted. The difference between the two
situations is that Mr. Lacovara rested with asking a rhetorical
question and didn’t bother to support the contention.

Bloomberg news: Government: Microsoft “grasping at straws”
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,37318,00.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-03 00:44:46

Snippet: The “Independent Institute of Oakland”
(I couldn’t find anything on this name through altavista) placed
near-fullpage adds in national newspapers to decry the government’s
treatment of high-tech companies it has accused of anti-trust
violations.

The institute claims to represent 240 economists. To
get an idea of what this means you may be interested in learning that
the institute is producing a book by Stan Liebowitz (an on- and off
Microsoft consultant) and Stephen Margolis titled “Winners, losers and Microsoft”.

Stan
Liebowitz recently made the news by claiming that having three Windows
source code licensees that are allowed to fork the code would cost the
software industry $30 billion. On the basis of his methodology, asking
some top level managers to estimate what the additional cost of
supporting three platforms would be, Mr. Liebowitz actually got another
number, but as that seemed high to him, he divided it by three.

Such
is the methodology of an economist that the 240 member economists of
the “Independent Institute” seem to value high enough to pay for having
his book published.

And yes, Microsoft is a paying member, but
the Institute won’t tell if they merely paid the corporate membership
due of $1000, or more.

32bitsonline.com: 240 Economists Slam US For Antitrust Actions
http://www.32bitsonline.com/news.php3?news=news/199906/nb199906026&page=1

Liebowitz’
presentation of his $30 billion calculation can be found in the
transcript of the second Appraising Microsoft workshop “Which remedies”:
http://www.appraising-microsoft.org/2nd-transcript.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-03 20:02:08

Snippet: Here follows an e-mail from tech support to a would be customer:

####################
We
don't have an external modem to give you. There is no possible way we
are going to install the Road Runner on your machine with Linux. The
tech. will NOT just drop off the modem, even if he could it would be an
internal because we don't have externals. Two-way service is NOT ready
in your
area, even if it was we will NOT do an install on Linux. We
have NO plans to install on Linux anytime in the future. If you ever
decide to use Windows 95/98 we would be glad to install the service for
you.

----------------------------------------
Technical Support, MediaOne Road Runner
Tel: (888)339-1688
Mailto:help@mw.mediaone.net
----------------------------------------

Original e-mail from Robert Miller, forwarded by Matthew Benjamin to the am-info (“Appraising Microsoft”) mailinglist:
http://lists.essential.org/am-info/msg03791.html

In 1998 Microsoft made a 10% equity investment in Road Runner.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-03 23:43:48

Snippet: June 3, the antitrust trial of Bristol vs Microsoft has begun. It is expected to last some six weeks.

The
witness is Bristol founder Ken Blackwell. As one of the exhibits is a
video-taped presentation of Bill Gates, which I believe was not made
specifically for the trial, Bristol considers Gates a witness too.

At
Bristol’s webpage on the trial, you can find some links to articles,
e.g. from Reuters and ZDNet, with some additional information.

Bristol Technology sues Microsoft Corporation for violation of antitrust laws
http://www.bristol.com/legal/index.html

Microsoft and Bristol Technologies, Inc.
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/bti/

Apparently,
marketing made Microsoft change the order of the parties in the lawsuit
and replace the “vs” with “and” to make it look less disturbing. They
haven’t recently updated the page, but its first line is still their
basic defense:

"Despite Bristol's claims, this case is
really about Bristol's attempt to use the courts to impose a
preferential contract for Bristol over one of its competitors."

Meanwhile, Bristol has pointed out that the not-mentioned “one of its competitors”, which is Mainsoft, signed a contract with Microsoft only after Bristol filed suit. Clearly, one cannot “impose a preferential contract .. over one of [one's] competitors” if that competitor didn’t have a contract at the time.

Furthermore, one should ask how Microsoft’s usage of Mainsoft’s “MainWin” Windows/UNIX library for the ports of Internet Explorer and DCOM to UNIX is related to Mainsoft’s licensing conditions.

For details, see Mainsoft’s website: http://www.mainsoft.com/.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 08:14:15

Snippet: "It is likely that Norris will find himself under personal attack from the Microsoft legal team during cross-examination."

MS, DoJ lawyers out in force for IBM witness
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000003.html

"Microsoft
is clearly seeking to show that there was some dissent within IBM, and
that the browser market was competitive (except that Microsoft does not
like to recognise the existence of a browser market, of course)."

IBM witness – MS probes for conflict within IBM
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000004.html

"We
were offered on several occasions, from time to time, offerings from
Microsoft, financial offerings, financial incentives, to stop shipping
products from time to time, or reduce or eliminate them."

IBM witness reveals MS OEM price threats and deals
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000005.html

"Pepperman
said that Microsoft had ended up taking $30 million for what was
claimed to be $50 million of under-reported royalties. Norris said he
was unaware of this. Pepperman then asked Norris if he knew that an
internal IBM audit had found that royalties were under-reported. Again,
Norris said he was unaware of this. Pepperman indicated that the audit
had taken ten months, and that a great deal of time had been taken up
by IBM in negotiating a non-disclosure agreement with the auditors."

MS OEM VP to IBM: dump Lotus and we’ll cut a deal
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000006.html

All articles by Graham Lea.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 09:39:12

Snippet: Highlights are:
  • Corel intends to
    create a GUI desktop for Linux and therefore Linux is a threat to
    Microsoft’s position in the desktop market (Fine, look forward to it,
    but it is not here now.)
  • Lotus Notes is being ported to Linux.
    That may be a server application, but Lacovara attempted to make Fisher
    admit that this will help Linux on the desktop. (False assumption: a
    port doesn’t change the protocols, so having the server run on Linux
    will change nothing wrt the clients. Of course, one can create
    protocols favoring certain client OS’s, but that is not at hand.)
  • Dell
    and IBM support Linux, even on some desktop lines (This shows there are
    cracks in the wall of OEMs pre-installing only Microsoft software, not
    that Linux has any “usage” share.)
  • “Linux is beating Windows”
    as Mr. Cole writes to James Allchin. Microsoft dug up some data
    intended to show that Linux (client+server) is beating Windows
    (client+server) in retail. As Mr. Fisher replied, Windows users buy
    their OS when buying a new computer, while Linux users must buy at
    retail (or download, but I’m sure not going to do that at home). It is
    interesting that Microsoft is now switching from their “usage” share
    unit to “market” share. A recent survey of OS’s (clients for sure) that
    visited tens of thousands of websites, showed the “usage share” of
    Linux to be 0.22%, while Microsoft was at 95%. Compare this with the “Linux is beating Windows” claim that Microsoft is defending in court today.

Mr.
Boies objected against having an e-mail from Microsoft’s David Cole to
Jim Allchin admitted as evidence as it was possibly created for the
purpose of being evidence. Mr. Lacovara vehemently argued that if the
DOJ valued internal e-mails so much they should admit this one to and
Judge Jackson denied the objection. A good thing, as we will now get
the opportunity to check exhibit 2479 once it appears at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/trial/exhibits/

Otherwise
Mr. Lacovara asked some questions about early adopters and whether Mr.
Fisher had done empirical research in this area. Mr. Fisher – who
didn’t do such research – failed to see the relevance of these
questions, and so do I.

transcript:
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/trial/transcripts/jun99/06-03-pm.htm

See also:

The Register: Linux is outselling Windows 98, says Microsoft
by John Lettice
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000009.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 12:07:24

Snippet: Mark Hinds forwarded a message from MediaOne tech support:

Subject: RE: Support for non-Windows platforms
From: "MediaOne Road Runner"
To: , "'Mark Hinds'"
Date: Thu, 3 Jun 1999 22:28:04 -0500

Thanks for writing.

We
are not able to provide technical support for non-standard operating
systems due to the lack of information we may have on those operating
systems.

We are able to provide only the following information about the Linux platform:

To
use the Linux operating system with your Media One service, you will
need to make sure your Ethernet card is installed and working properly,
and that you have a DHCP client installed.

For information about Ethernet and Linux, please consider the following URL:

http://metalab.unc.edu/LDP/HOWTO/Ethernet-HOWTO.html

For information about DHCP and Linux, please consider the following URL:

http://metalab.unc.edu/LDP/HOWTO/mini/DHCP.html

If
you have any future questions or problems, please feel free to E-mail
us again or contact our Technical Support line for further assistance.
When replying to this address, please include this message as well as
all previous correspondence regarding this issue.

MediaOne(r) Road Runner(tm) Technical Support Department 05
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
-----------------------------------------------------
help@mw.mediaone.net
(888) 339-1688
Online Helpdesk (Detroit area):
http://local.mediaone.rr.com/detroit/help/helpframe.html?http://edesk.rr.com
/edesk/edesk.asp?entity=8
Online Helpdesk (Cleveland area):
http://local.mediaone.rr.com/cleveland/help/helpframe.html?http://edesk.rr.c
om/edesk/edesk.asp?entity=43
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
-----------------------------------------------------

-----Original Message-----
From: zoro@halcyon.com [SMTP:zoro@halcyon.com] On Behalf Of Mark Hinds
Sent: Thursday, June 03, 1999 9:52 PM
To: help@mw.mediaone.net; Mark Hinds
Subject: Support for non-Windows platforms

It is my understanding that MediaOne has no plans to support
non-Windows PC platforms, in particular linux. Is this true?

Mark Hinds

##8##
ENUM::000000006AB5C619AED7D211AF3400105A9D758B64BE9F00

Of
course, this doesn’t answer the question whether the MediaOne folks are
even installing the hardware, but I guess such reasoning is the vestige
of lawyers, and that we may conclude that MediaOne is willing to offer
a service to their customers instead of telling their customers what OS
they should buy.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 17:23:00

Snippet: WSJ reports:

"Wink has been
marketing interactive TV services that work over conventional analog
cable lines. Under a joint development and marketing agreement,
Microsoft will blend Wink's technology with future versions of
Microsoft's WebTV, a rival offering that offers a form of interactive
TV based on a telephone connection to the Internet."

The deal gives Microsoft a 10% stake in Wink.

WSJ/CNetMS invests in Wink Communications
http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,2269906,00.html?chkpt=hpqs014

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 20:09:27

Snippet: Usually such lengthy articles come after the weekend, but here’s Graham Lea’s in-depth story on the Microsoft-IBM relationship:

IBM witness: the inside poop on MS and IBM killing OS/2
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990604-000029.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-04 20:22:40

Snippet:

In the US Department of Justice
anti-trust case against Microsoft, some more embarrassing Microsoft
internal e-mails have come to surface. Microsoft wanted to dig up some
numbers to show that Netscape market share is holding steady even as it
is well known to be declining. This could only be explained as a
desperation move.

See:

Microsoft E-Mail Shows Late Data Search
Washington Post
By Rajiv Chandrasekaran

Similarly,
Microsoft’s lawyers want to show that Linux and network devices are a
credible threat to its PC operating system monopoly even as Chairman
Gates says just the opposite. The DOJ’s economic witness Franklin
Fisher says that Linux has only niche market share as a desktop
operating system and needs to grow significantly to be regarded as a
true competitor:

“The last time I looked, it was no
more than about five per cent. It’s going to have to get up, I would
say, to well over 20 per cent and be seriously growing.”

Microsoft must have a much lower standard for true competition; they
claim Netscape is still a serious competitor in browsers even though it
is only distributed by about 25% of computer vendors and ISP’s with
that figure either flat or falling. As to whether network appliances or
handheld devices can displace the PC is a matter of speculation.

See:

Microsoft trial: Judge pursues `parallel universes’
Seattle Times
By James Grimaldi

and:

Microsoft Trial: Linux argument fails in court
VNU Business Publications
By Janice McGinn

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-06-05 05:24:58

Snippet: By accident I came across the following page:

Computerwire's
"on-location" coverage of the Microsoft trial has been acknowledged as
the most complete and insightful in the industry. Content from our
Computer Business Review magazine has even been cited in evidence at
the trial.

We have made it available to non-subscribers here,
through links with popular internet portals (PC Plus) so that readers
can judge for themselves and keep track daily with the most important
legal event in IT history.
At the same time this can provide a sense
of the quality of Computerwire's paid services and we invite you to use
the buttons on the left to look through our Knowledge Centre with a
view to taking a deeper look a our services. Trial coverage will
continue during the recess.

The page contains links to several ComputerWire articles with trial coverage each day.

ComputerWire: The Microsoft Trial
http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-05 09:45:04

Snippet: A federal judge upheld the decision of a local court that AT&T is to open its cable networks to competitors.

AT&T
has already started to auction off the doors edging on their roads,
e.g. by agreeing with part AT&T owner Microsoft to install Windows
CE appliances. When competitors are allowed to use AT&T’s cable
network, it seems that AT&T has been selling something it doesn’t
own.

ZDNN: Judge to AT&T — Free access for all!
http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,2270297,00.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-05 21:06:05

Snippet: IDG has listed the acquisitions and investments of Microsoft and Intel since the beginning of this year.

Is
all this spending a sign of maturing corporate entities spreading their
wings to converging technologies, or just simultaneous midlife crises?
Are Wintel’s investments in trendy networking and Internet companies
the equivalent of buying a shiny red sports car at the first sign of
gray hairs?

The one clear trend in these highly diversified
investments is a move toward networking and communications. For
Microsoft that means investments in cable companies linked to
agreements to use Windows CE in set-tops. For Intel, there’s a strong
move toward networking chip solutions as well as a surprising leap into
Web hosting.

IDG: Analysis: Wintel acquisitions on the upswing
by Eric Brown
http://cnn.com/TECH/computing/9906/03/wintel.idg/

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-07 11:21:55

Snippet: The computer industry has a pretty good idea of what constitutes an operating system and an application.
Microsoft wants to change the definitions, just as they often rewrite history, to suit their needs. However,
there are precedents. Stan Gibson gives his take on the fundamental issue of product tying.

Why Microsoft will not winPCWeek By Stan Gibson

By: Rick Fane
Date: 1999-06-07 19:08:44

Snippet: Microsoft executives are beginning to
be more explicit about their ideological preferences. Gone are concepts
like “price/performance” that belonged to the legacy capitalistic
system. The new focus is on “leadership”.

[Developers] need leadership from companies like Microsoft[.]
Paul Maritz, Head Developer Group, Microsoft http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/05-24maritzqa.htm

We have to lead – and we have to follow our customers.
Steve Ballmer
Seen on BBC World – World Business Report, June 7, 1999

What
a strange madness must have taken hold of Microsoft’s executives that
they do not see that people are generally distrustful of those that
tell them to be their leaders.

Update:

A recent article at ZDNet has yet another reference to “leadership” by Steve Ballmer:

"We
don't really need a company of 29,000 leaders," Ballmer told attendees,
according to documentation from the meeting. "That may be what we've
got, but it doesn't work very well if we're going to achieve any kind
of goals we've talked about. We need to do a better job of developing
leaders. Ballmer went on to acknowledge that "sometimes maybe our
ambitions outrun our ability to put in place the leadership teams
needed to run the projects."

Its a good thing that this is
not about leadership over third parties outside Microsoft, but it is
still interesting that the concept is drawing such interest from, in
this case, Ballmer.

Ballmer: Remaking MS in his own image
by Mary Jo Foley
http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,2270675,00.html?chkpt=hpqs014

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-07 23:08:12

Snippet: "It was no excuse in a
winner-take-all world for Microsoft to be allowed to do anything it
wanted to reach that position: only competition on merits was
permissible. Fisher launched into an analysis of predatory acts, and
how anti-competitive actions like giving away an expensive product free
- stand-alone IE - only made sense if it were done to protect a
monopoly."

MS economist gets fail mark from his old prof
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990608-000006.html

"More
substantively than that, what this does not tell you is that Netscape
is actually paying Compaq in order to get its browser on the desktop.
It was paying them advertising, something supposed to be worth over
$700,000."

Did Compaq and MS collude to ambush DoJ witness?
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990608-000007.html

"Microsoft yesterday announced its latest acquistion, Canadian software developer ShadowFactor Software."

MS shines light on ShadowFactor
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990608-000009.html

"Ballmer's
dream that Office Servers could come close to Web servers in
penetration meanwhile suggests that the old plan to get the Microsoft
formats out there (as expressed by Bill himself in subpoenaed documents
circa 1994-95) is by no means dead."

MS ‘Office Servers’ to rival Web servers – Ballmer
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990608-000015.html

Update: Additionally:

The
timing, the volume and the subject of Gates' phone call make it clear
that he was inextricably bound up in the whole matter. He'd mailed his
OEM sales chief Joachim Kempin in March 95 asking if SmartSuite "should
become an issue in our global relationship with IBM," and Kempin had
responded: "I am willing to do whatever it takes to kick them out."

The day Bill Gates screamed IBM’s house down
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990608-000020.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-08 13:15:46

Snippet: Microsoft had better hurry to get this trial over with, as the companies it can point at as competitors are running out.

Microsoft’s latest “alliance” acquisition is Inprise:

Microsoft
Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) and Inprise Corp. (Nasdaq: INPR) today announced
the completion of a set of strategic technology and licensing
agreements that will be the foundation for a long-term alliance between
the two companies. The announcement includes a $25 million purchase by
Microsoft of shares of Inprise preferred stock.
...
Microsoft
also paid Inprise $100 million for the rights to use Inprise-patented
technology in Microsoft products and to settle a number of
long-standing patent and technology licensing issues. The total value
of the investment and payment to Inprise is $125 million.

Will Inprise now do the following?
- drop CORBA standard for COM+ (Visibroker)
- drop Java standard for whatever we should call Microsoft’s proprietary language based on java (JBuilder)

INPRISE AND MICROSOFT CONFIRM COMMITMENT OF INPRISE TOOLS FOR THE WINDOWS PLATFORM
http://www.inprise.com/about/press/1999/inprise_ms.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-08 19:27:30

Snippet: IBM's experience is very familiar
to computer makers. Microsoft has a well-earned reputation of
threatening these customers into supporting Microsoft products and
punishing those who do not. Examine the record and you will see how
Microsoft uses its operating system monopoly to leverage its browser
and application software, stifle competition in many different markets,
and hurt consumers through higher prices, fewer choices and less
innovation.

What follows is an enumeration of how
Microsoft has forced each OEM to do its bidding and thereby harm
consumers. A bit over-enthusiastic at times (e.g. IBM’s total payment
for Windows licensing depended not only on price per license, but also
on the rising number of licenses), but I think this is the right
approach to go about this matter.

IBM Speaks Out For an Industry Bullied by Microsoft’s Monopoly
http://www.procompetition.org/xp/p-headlines/i-current/a-928776652/p_article.view

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-08 21:57:56

Snippet: We’ve heard it time and again: Digital
had to close down research on the “Shark” network computer it was
developing with Oracle in order to get access to Windows NT to run on
its Alpha processor, Intel had to close its NSP development in order to
keep Microsoft from collaborating with AMD and Cyrix to exclude Intel,
Apple had to drop cross-platform Quicktime in order to prevent
Microsoft from acting on its threat to stop supporting MS Office for
the Mac, and now we hear about how Microsoft sought to have IBM drop
support for its own software, and that of a party Netscape, in order to
get access to Windows to a degree one would expect them to have on the
basis of the quantity they were buying.

MSNBC: “MS held `secret meeting’ with IBM”
http://www.msnbc.com/news/277875.asp

The Register: “MS offered IBM Win95 source for ‘neutral’ PC”
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990609-000005.html

Meanwhile,
Microsoft is telling that it’s present buying spree has nothing to do
with taking control – as an interpretation according to economic theory
would explain it, but more along the lines of charity:

"Microsoft
acknowledges that it is spending billions to help companies within the
USA and internationally develop more reasons for people to buy
computers."

(USA Today, Email Edition Jun. 09, 1999 6:00 a.m. ET
Seen at: http://www.usatoday.com/email/mail5.htm#tech, but content is removed now.)

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-09 14:27:48

Snippet: After this evidence, there can be
no doubt that Microsoft should be prevented from ever again abusing its
dominant position by having to publish an OEM price list, with only
volume discounts allowed. It would also be necessary to ensure that the
prices are set at a fair level and not subject to discounts refereed by
Microsoft, as is the case with its so-called MDAs. The mechanism for
this would need to be worked out, but it should not be beyond the
capability of the courts.

IBM evidence shows how MS controls PC OEMs
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990610-000007.html

Some
of the conditions that Microsoft presented to IBM if it wished to get a
licence for Windows 9x or NT4 were: "adopt Windows 95 as the standard
operating system for IBM: $3 [discount per Windows 95 licence]";
"Windows 95 is the only operating system mentioned in advertisement",
to gain a $1 MDA reduction; and "reduce, drop or eliminate OS/2", which
would be worth a total of $8 in MDA reduction.

Secret deals MS uses to control PC companies
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990610-000006.html

From
about 20 July, IBM found it was completely cut off from access to
Windows 95 code, and could not continue with development of models
incorporating Windows 95. Kempin told Santelli that if IBM would agree
not to ship SmartSuite for six months to a year, the audit would be
settled. The judge asked at this point for Kempin's name to be
repeated, which seemed to indicate that he was concerned at this gross
abuse of power.

Cut a deal or you don’t get Win95 – IBM faces PC suicide
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990610-000005.html

When
Norris had to negotiate the1996 market development agreement, Microsoft
toughened its negotiating stance. It was "non-negotiable", since
Microsoft had decided it no longer needed IBM to help make a market for
Windows 95. Microsoft also turned the screw by telling IBM it could
only have a single licence agreement for Windows 3.11, MS-DOS, MS-DOS
tools, Windows 95, Windows for Workgroups, and NT 4.0 in a "Windows
desktop family agreement".

Screws went onto IBM at Gates’ bidding
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990610-000004.html

All articles by Graham Lea.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-10 11:52:22

Snippet: When, Why and How Windows CE Will Save Bill Gates? Butt
Jesse Berst’s AnchorDesk

Jesse’s
here to tell us that Windows CE is bound for glory. You might as well
make plans to support it because it is the obvious choice. Any other
platform is a dead end and you’d be wasting your time and money if you
don’t make plans to integrate Windows CE into your plans now.

I
can’t help but wonder exactly what the motivation is for this kind of
bald faced boosterism posing as journalism. Does Microsoft threaten to
quit advertising in ZD magazines if ZD doesn’t show enough enthusiasm?
I really wish that Microsoft would get confident enough to just buy
Jesse a new Lexus or pay for a Hawaiian vacation with the checks signed
by Bill himself. As it is ZD and their troops can pretend to be
unbiased. After all, Jesse said some nice things about Linux. But then
so has Microsoft, for the benefit of Judge Jackson. Probably just a
coincidence.

God forbid that the pointy headed managers of the
world would have to choose products on technical merits. As it is they
just have to point to articles like this to justify their choice of
Microsoft’s products. After all, resistance is futile.

By: Rick Fane
Date: 1999-06-10 15:49:19

Snippet:

In the US DOJ’s antitrust case
against Microsoft, the final rebuttal witness Princeton University
computer science professor Edward Felten is again on the stand. In
rehashing earlier assertions that Internet Explorer does not have to be
integrated into Windows, the trial took an unexpected twist when Judge
Jackson brought up virus prevention as a possible reason for having an
operating system without a browser. This is primarily a feature (or
lack thereof) security-conscious corporate users would want, but it
certainly is a valid concern with Windows users in general.

Trial focuses on security question
C|Net / Reuters

Update:
Microsoft “proved” once again yesterday that Felten’s Internet Explorer
“removal” program does not truly remove Internet Explorer:

Yesterday
saw what you might call a completely unabashed hopelessly unscientific
counter-attack. Microsoft attorney Steve Holley whipped out a Toshiba
notebook he claimed had just been bought, and demanded that Felten
install his program on it there and then. Felten protested that other
stuff that came preloaded on the Tosh might interfere with his program,
but the judge told him to go ahead anyway. He seems to have adopted
something of a patronising and indulgent tone: "Holley really wants to
run this program," he said, shaking his head.
He installed the program, 'removed' IE but then when Holley told him to press control/N, wham! Internet Explorer popped up.

Of course, this makes for a flashy display but completely avoids some key issues:

  1. Felten
    never claimed his program entirely removes Internet Explorer (and,
    possibly, the machine used for the demonstration was running a version
    of Windows ’98 for which he had never seen the source code)
  2. What
    are the benefits of welding the browser to the operating system that
    cannot be achieved with the browser as a separate application?

DoJ expert: there are 3,000 bugs in Win98
The Register
By John Lettice

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-06-11 05:09:45

Snippet: All over but the shouting
June 10

IBM plugs hole for government
June 8
BY RICH GRAY

Rich
Gray, is a San Jose attorney with 17 years of experience in
intellectual property and antitrust law. His trial commentary for the
San Jose Mercury has been an island of objective opinion in a sea of
slanted coverage. As you might expect, he has praised the efforts of
the Department of Justice and marveled at Microsoft’s blunders.

However, he has consistently avoided jumping to the conclusion that Microsoft could not win.

This
week he came to the conclusion that it’s time for Microsoft to run up
the white flag. He’s also confident that a ruling that Microsoft has a
monopoly will survive an appeal.

By: Rick Fane
Date: 1999-06-12 14:53:14

Snippet: Originally compiled by Roy Bixler, Billwatch has a page with OS prices: http://main.billwatch.net/background/os_prices.phtml

Unfortunately,
the page is not up to date and it shows $0 prices where information is
lacking (-cjr: I am to blame on both accounts).

As I wanted to
have the data presented in a diagram without having to do any
scripting, I used StarOffice to create it. Unfortunately, StarOffice
5.0 seemed unable to turn the result into HTML+GIF, so I have split the
result in a HTML page with the table, found at http://main.billwatch.net/background/osprices-19990612.html and a StarOffice file that includes the diagram: http://main.billwatch.net/background/osprices-19990612.sdw (for downloading if you have StarOffice)

From
the data we glance that Windows NT Workstation, OS/2, and Windows98 are
the most expensive options for the desktop. Anyone claiming that
Microsoft Windows is priced low has some explaining to do.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-12 18:12:29

Snippet: Some wierd glitch made Billwatch go
down yesterday. The magnificent Pentium 100 Mhz with 16 MB server on
which billwatch runs is graciously hosted by my ex-employer Euronet
Internet BV (http://www.euronet.nl/).

This
morning one of the Euronet’s fine engineers went above and beyond the
call of duty by going to the office at an untimely hour and resetting
the box. Thank you Niels Bakker :-) .

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-13 11:19:26

Snippet: Microsoft has closed a deal with
minister-president Clement of Nordrhein-Westfalen, one of Germany’s
states, to the effect that Microsoft is to provide the informational
infrastructure for the state at the cost of NRW’s taxpayers (see: http://www.ffii.org/clem/pm99-069.txt)

This
year Gates and Ballmer have been quite successful in making extensive
deals with European governments, e.g. to have them subsidize the buying
of Microsoft software.

The government support for Microsoft’s monopoly has not gone unnoticed and protest is mounting.

June 13, a conference takes place in K�ln titled “Informationelle Monokultur und die Alternativen”. (See: http://kongress.ffii.org/) (Yeah, that’s today, if I had known earlier I might have gone there :-( . )

Aside
from agitating against the NRW’s support for Microsoft’s monopoly – and
not considering any alternatives before embracing Microsoft as a
partner – a theme of the conference is the EU’s soon to be accepted
laws concerning software patents, without having bothered to
investigate whether such laws are beneficial for any party at all.
(See: http://www.freepatents.org/)

It
is interesting to see that French and German open source activists are
starting to collaborate to educate the governmental officials that -
probably unwittingly – raise barriers for competition by partnering
with Microsoft.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-13 12:48:43

Snippet:

Web Publishing the Microsoft Way
Wired
By Oscar Cisneros

Now
that Office 2000 has been released and it supposedly is oriented to
publishing documents on the Internet, there is much concern that
Microsoft has not fully implemented the existing Web standards while
introducing their own competing proprietary methods. Here are some
relevant sections of the article:

  • "They have this sort
    of weird hodgepodge format -- but the document is neither valid HTML,
    nor is the document XML conformant," [independent programmer and
    technical editor for xml.com Tim] Bray said.
  • "If
    you want to do stuff beyond the standards, that's fine. But just
    implement the existing standards before you go tearing off with the new
    stuff," said George Olsen, leader of the Web Standard ProjectHis comment alluded to a recent statement made by the project about Internet Explorer 5.0's standards compliance.
  • After
    analyzing a test document created using Office 2000, Olsen said
    Microsoft was on the right track in making sure that its proprietary
    extensions did not interfere with standard tags and languages. But he
    did note some overlap that caused him concern.
    "There do seem to
    be a number of tags that do seem to duplicate W3C's CSS standards," he
    said. "If it's duplicating that standard, then it's fragmenting that
    standard."

Microsoft chimes in with this comment:

  • "With
    Office 2000, we're saying that HTML is on the same level as our file
    formats," said Andrew Dixon, group product manager for Office 2000.
    "We've done a lot of work in implementing Web standards."

The
above could mean that Microsoft regards HTML/XML as being subject to
proprietary change at any time. Additionally, the collaboration
features introduced with Office 2000 can only be used with a Windows NT
server with Office 2000 extensions. Along the lines of
“de-commoditising Internet protocols” outlined in the infamous Halloween memos, it definitely smells like Microsoft’s embrace-and-extend attempt at controlling the Internet.

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-06-13 16:29:08

Snippet: I think the affidavit of Richard N.
Langlois is interesting reading as it concerns the effects of
Microsoft’s monopoly in an area that was already touched several times
in DoJ v Microsoft but with a new player and a slightly different
vocabulary. Wind/U is described as an adapter, or converter, or
“gateway technology” that reduces network effects and thereby softens
the power of the owner of dominant technology.

54. Wind/U is
a gateway technology, since it reduces the cost to ISVs of supporting
UNIX and thus attenuates the network effects of Windows's dominance of
the personal computer market. The reduction in switching costs that a
gateway technology permits enhances welfare by increasing the extent to
which consumers can choose operating systems according to dimensions of
functionality other than network benefits. Moreover, by reducing the
significance of compatibility issues, Bristol's product helps increase
innovation both by creating a larger stable institutional environment
and by reducing the resources ISVs need to divert away from innovation
and toward duplicating software for multiple standards. In this
context, a gateway technology like Bristol's product helps create some
of the benefits of a single standard environment without reducing
competition.

I have no idea whether Bristol will or should
win its antitrust case, but it sure brings up good reasons for
Microsoft to suppress its technology.

Bristol Technology v Microsoft Corporation
Affidavit: Richard N. Langlois

http://www.bristol.com/legal/affidavit_langlois.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-13 22:09:18

Snippet: I can’t add much to the title: basic arguments of Fisher, Norris and Felten are listed in this article.

Summary of government’s rebuttal case
http://www.procompetition.org/xp/p-headlines/i-current/a-929364638/p_article.view

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-14 23:48:04

Snippet: Microsoft attorneys made questioning
David Colburn about strategic matters the main part of their
interrogation. As Colburn had little or no knowledge of these matters,
he seemed to be the wrong witness, the exercise seemed like a waste of
time and effort.

http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt2-990616.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-16 08:09:57

Snippet: Charles Fitzgerald, director of
business development at Microsoft, declared in the context of
Microsoft’s paying Transvirtual to create open source software:

Open
source is hard to ignore right now. We looked at the real customer
benefit. We don't want to do something like Netscape, making a big
fanfare to see it end in complete failure.

Two things are
relevant here. First, as Microsoft is paying Transvirtual, there is
apparently money to be made by creating software and distributing it
under an open source license. Microsoft’s insistent claims that open
source is not viable because programmer’s would rather be payed than
not is therefore ignoring a relevant fact. Thus Microsoft’s repeatedly
presented selection of facts with regard to payment for open source
programming efforts leads to the false conclusion that these efforts
are not ever payed for.

Second, if Netscape’s distribution of
its browser as open source is a “complete failure”, then what does this
mean for Netscape/AOL as a competitor in the browser market? Microsoft
has repeatedly claimed that releasing software under an open source
license will have detrimental effects on the financial state of the
creator of the software. If “mozilla” is a failure and given that there
is no way back to a more restrictive license for what is distributed
now, I can’t think how Netscape can possibly at the same time be an
ardent competitor in the browser market. Let alone, that he competitive
landscape of the software industry at large has tilted to
AOL’s/Netscape’s advantage.

The following article contains
factual mistakes about Transvirtual and the kaffe JVM. I refer to it
for the quotes that I consider damning to Microsoft’s position in court.

Wired
MS Kaffe-Maker Swallows Java
by Leander Kahney
http://www.wired.com/news/print_version/technology/story/20225.html?wnpg=all

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-16 10:01:28

Snippet: we would have been hearing how cars
provided competition for Standard Oil because these could also run on
oil provided by other vendors (even though none had relevant market
share or production capacity at the time, so no choice was available to
buyers).

Furthermore, we would have heard that the
alleged monopoly on oil could fall apart at any moment, as a multitude
of people were digging in the earth with the purpose of striking oil.

And
lastly, they would have told that oil was about to be overtaken by
nuclear and solar energy (and one shouldn’t bother about questioning
whether these can provide energy for cars) so, despite Standard Oil’s
market share, the company wouldn’t have market power at the moment of
investigation.

It takes the absence of principles leading to a
consistent belief system to set store on Microsoft’s vapor ware
announcements of competition in the future that are supposed to undermine its monopoly today. MSNBC is one organization that lacks such principles as it heartily evangelizes the claims of its part-owner Microsoft.

MSNBC
AOL’s epic aim: to slay Microsoft
By Elliot Zaret & Brock N. Meeks
http://www.msnbc.com/news/280218.asp

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-17 00:17:43

Snippet: From ComputerWire:

Eubanks'
interview in the book, "In The Company of Giants - Candid Conversations
With The Visionaries of The Digital World," which the government
produced as evidence, suggested that Symantec had good reason to stay
in Microsoft's good books. In the interview, Eubanks had said of the
Norton Utilities suite, "We have a tremendous infrastructure that works
closely with Microsoft. This is a tremendous barrier to competition."
Boies had already brought out a San Jose Mercury News article in which
Eubanks admitted that Microsoft was "a natural monopoly," although
Eubanks insisted that monopolies would always be "eclipsed" by the pace
of technology. However, the damage was done, and at the end of his time
on the stand, Eubanks looked more like a man who had been mugged by the
digital age rather than a visionary.

ComputerWire
DOJ Crushes Credibility of Digital Visionary Eubanks
by Dan Jones
http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt2-990617.html

Addendum:

In a reaction to this item, Rick Fane wrote:

The
Washington-Post story on Eubank’s testimony refered to his taking a
Palm Pilot out of his pocket as an example of a threat to Microsoft’s
monopoly. If only the DOJ had introduced the box that the Palm Pilot
comes in as evidence. Mine lists, under system requirements: Windows95
or Windows NT 4.0 — They support the Mac but that kit is sold
separately. Some big threat.

Well, this supports Bill Gates’
description of the situation in Newsweek and undermines the arguments
of Microsoft’s attorneys in court. A product that makes it a condition
of its usage to obtain another product is most certainly not competing
with that other product.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-17 08:57:01

Snippet: Microsoft banks on ClearType to spur electronic books InfoWorld

For
those of you who aren’t familiar with ebooks let me give you a little
background. The term ebook, which is short for electronic book, can
apply to book in the form of a computer file such as ASCI, HTML, PDF or
proprietary format that’s available online that can be read on your PC.
A newer definition of the word refers to a class of portable reading
devices which are specifically designed to make reading these files
more convenient. About a year ago the first three products in this
market were announced by NuvoMedia, EveryBook and SoftBook. The first
of these, the Rocket eBook from NuvoMedia started shipping last
November. SoftBook started shipping last January. In the meantime
several other companies have also announced products and shown
prototypes. So far there are over a half a dozen compaines that have
developed products although, as far as I know, only the two I’ve
mentioned have actually shipped yet.

A few months ago all these
interested parties and Microsoft got together to plan an Open eBook
standard so that a single uniform file format could be supported by all
these devices.

So today, I just read a story from InfoWorld
about Microsoft’s expectations for ClearType. Perhaps I’m reading too
much into it, after all it wasn’t written by anyone from Microsoft, but
I do find a lot to dislike in this article.

Starting with the
reference to the proposed Open eBook standard as being Microsoft’s.
Then Dick Brass, Microsoft mouthpiece, proceeds to tell us how
Microsoft’s new technologies will “launch a lot of new areas such as
eBooks, tablet PCs, ePads and ePaper, with eBooks to come out of the
gate first with ’major announcements’in about six months.” As if I
haven’t owned an ebook for 8 months, as if there weren’t haven’t been
several tablet PCs on the market for years.

(This pronouncement
comes from a company that hasn’t shipped any products in this market
yet. But they’ve staked their claim. This is in the finest Microsoft
tradition of announcing vaporware. For those of you who don’t know what
you’re supposed to do, here’s your part. . . don’t buy anything until
Microsoft’s products are available. After all, they will own the entire
ebook market eventually so any purchase you make from these
fly-by-night companies like NuvoMedia or SoftBook is a waste of money.)

In
the next paragraph the esteemed Mr Brass admits that these concepts are
not new. But apparently, until Microsoft does it, it doesn’t count.

The
article ends on this note: “Brass also hinted that Microsoft may be
interested in doing more than delivering the technologies to enable
people to read online books; it might also be interested in delivering
the books themselves. When asked if Amazon.com and such retailers would
be the likely distributors of eBooks, Brass said he would prefer people
to get the books through Microsoft, but that Amazon.com would probably
have them as well.” It should come as a comfort the the stockholders
and employees of Amazon that Microsoft has given them permission to
sell books, at least for the time being.

Anybody want to buy a used Rocket eBook?

If you’re interested in ebooks, check out:eBookNet

By: Rick Fane
Date: 1999-06-17 20:10:01

Snippet: Reading between the e-mail snippets
InfoWorld by Mary Jo Foley

Once
again, Microsoft’s internal email contradicts the claims that they’ve
made in public and in court. In this article Mary Jo Foley provides
some very interesting examples of Microsoft’s real policies in
providing API information and supporting cross platform capabilities.
Perhaps these will also be produced by David Boies when Richard
Schmalensee is on the stand again.

By: Rick Fane
Date: 1999-06-17 20:49:02

Snippet: Another glance at Microsoft’s “vision”
of the world to be: it attempts to leverage its market power to urge
its customers to take political action to save Microsoft from the laws
of the land. Just watch that Active Desktop once Gates goes for the
presidency.

The Register
MS pushes write to congress campaign via Windows Update
by John Lettice
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990618-000006.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-18 13:50:28

Snippet: The FFII has sent a letter to the EU competition commissioner on software patents.

It
is good that some action has followed on Richard Stallman’s call some
weeks ago to act upon the EU’s planned introduction of software patents.

The
letter ties the planned introduction of software patents to Microsoft’s
strategy to replace Internet standards with proprietary technology.
Although that is the first thing that comes to my own mind, I must say
that I imagine that this is not the kind of argument that helps against
the introduction of software patents generally.

Anyway, I consider this initiative a Good Thing.

Letter to the EU Competition Commissioner
http://swpat.ffii.org/miert/indexen.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-20 22:54:46

Snippet: A Macintosh user sent me a fax from a
page of Dutch Macintosh magazine MacFan of an interview with Diego
Piacentini, general manager of Apple Europe. Here are some – translated
- fragments:

If the Dutch government persists in its refusal
to create a tax entry application that is suitable for the Macintosh,
Apple will file suit against The Netherlands at the European Commission.

...

We
talk with the EU to make sure that all member governments guarantee
that they won't discriminate against Mac-users. These talks have been
going on for quite some time now; they take a lot of time. In all of
Europe some five million Macintoshes are used. So there is a potential
of five million people running the risk of being discriminated against,
because they can't file their tax entry in a simple way through their
computer.
The Dutch government cannot refuse to make a tax entry
aplication for the Mac if it produces one for Windows. And if it
persists, we will put the problem before Karel van Miert, the European
commissioner for competition. We would rather refrain from doing this,
but if we are forced to, we will fight it in Brussels. This form of
discrimination may not continue.

Of course, I sympathise
with Mac users on this matter, but unlike Apple I don’t believe that a
port of the application to the Macintosh is the way to solve it. Just
as European governments should not make buying a product from one
vendor a condition for filling in a tax entry on a computer, they
shouldn’t make buying products from one of two vendors a condition.

One
way to solve the problem is to use open standards and write the
application in java. Java JVMs are available for a large number of
platforms, and those platforms not supported can at least create a port
of the JVM based on the java specifications.

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-21 11:10:06

Snippet: In his latest testimony Dr. Schmalensee
suggested that competition should be sought between specifications for
non-homogeneous products (in his words, in “platforms”), rather than
between homogeneous – interchangeable – products. By the standards of
Dr. Schmalensee Standard Oil was under competition from coal companies.

With
Sun, IBM, Novell, Oracle, Microsoft and even open source JVM’s being
available, one would think that competition would be between these
products, where price and performance are chosen by customers. Not so
according to Dr. Schmalensee. He claims that the JVM is in competition
with Windows because essentially Windows is not a product but a
“platform”. An implication of Dr. Schmalensee’s claim would be that if
all applications were written for WORA java, Microsoft would have
completely lost to the competition, even if it would still provide the
OS for 96% of the desktop computers. Things would end up even stranger
if we remember that Microsoft distributes a JVM: if all applications
were written for WORA java and Microsoft would have, say, 96% usage
share here, Schmalensee would see competition with Windows. Such are
the results of an economic analysis in terms of specifications instead
of suppliers and products.

LACOVARA: SO BASED ON YOUR REVIEW OF THE GOVERNMENT'S COMPLAINT,
15 OF THE TESTIMONY OF THE GOVERNMENT'S WITNESSES, AND OF YOUR
16 REVIEW OF ALL THE MATERIALS THAT YOU HAVE REVIEWED, WHAT DO
17 YOU THINK IS THE APPROPRIATE ARENA OF COMPETITION TO ANALYZE
18 AND TO ASSESS FROM A CONSUMER WELFARE PERSPECTIVE?
19 SCHMALENSEE: PLATFORMS.

Otherwise the testimony is full of little word tricks like the following:

LACOVARA: HAVE YOU SEEN ANY ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OR EVIDENCE
2 THAT SUPPORTS THE PROPOSITION THAT THE BROWSER WARS ENDED
3 BECAUSE, UNDER PROFESSOR FISHER'S VIEW, MICROSOFT HAD 50.01
4 PERCENT?

Charming straw man, right? Actual economic analyses don’t say that it is over “because” of some usage share percentage – this would be a limit, not a cause.
Rather they are in terms of possible revenues, and there we find that
Microsoft can charge for MSIE as part of the price of Windows, whereas
Netscape has to go so far as to pay Compaq to ship its browser.
The war is over because Netscape is no longer able to create revenues
from its browser to justify and continue its development effort.

As
an aside, before the session started judge Jackson read up the old joke
on “girlfriend 1.0″ updating quietly to “wife 1.0″ and in the process
disabling a couple of favorite applications and monitoring all others.

transcript Schmalensee testimony 21 June am session
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/trial/transcripts/jun99/06-21-am.htm

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-22 10:14:34

Snippet: Once more Microsoft has provided us with an interesting example of statistical propaganda.

Of
course, doing a price performance comparison of a server operating
system when the competition is free is likely to look bad. The solution
- rightly – is to compare the total cost of a system, that is, hardware
plus software. To reduce the price difference, the hardware has to be
as expensive as can be found.

And yes, this works! Windows NT comes out well – on a four-processor machine.

But
who cares about a system that doesn’t suit one’s own needs? Why would
one use a web server that spits out more data than a company’s
bandwidth can transfer? Who needs a file server able to handle over 20
clients simultaneously (up to 20 all OS’s tested by PC Week have about
the same performance, and, what’s more, cheaper hardware can do the
job).

Things get even funnier when Microsoft notes that Linux
doesn’t use part of the hardware. Eh, wouldn’t that mean that it could
get the same performance with cheaper hardware, thereby driving down
the embraced total cost of ownership measure?

Aside from these
main points concerning misrepresentation through ignoring relevant
information, there are minor, but nasty points such as measuring the
production of dynamic web pages under Linux through slow CGI instead of
faster mod_perl, mod_php, or mod_jserv technology. Clearly, the
benchmarkers didn’t bother with optimizing Linux.

Another
interesting aspect of Microsoft’s representation of the tests performed
by PC Week and PC Magazine is that it doesn’t tell about Solaris
outperforming Windows NT and that at a lower price. So, if you need a
four-processor machine, use Solaris! If you merely need a
single-processor system – guess what, that’s that vast majority of all
systems shipped – these tests won’t help you as OS’s behave differently
there.

Industry Benchmarks Show Windows NT Server 4.0 Outperforms Linux
http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver/nts/exec/compares/ntlinux.asp

Update:

Microsoft
propaganda as refered to above often evokes the idea of having a site
or set of pages defending Linux against it. It appeals to me too, but I
prefer to remain OS agnostic. (Do you believe this?)

I am happy to see that Linux Orbit is expecting barrages of Microsoft FUD and are preparing to deal with it: http://www.linuxorbit.com/fud/

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-23 20:08:20

Snippet: I haven’t yet formed much of an idea
about Richard Schmalensee’s claims concerning Linux and open-source,
but for my own benefit and that of others I have placed the relevant
fragments together.

To get an impression of how relevant Linux
is in Microsoft’s defense, you see how Linux is claimed to have already
broken through the lack of applications support:

So, it starts with a small base of users, starts
with almost no applications, and is difficult to use, frankly, in its early versions, and still it doesn't have
the simplicity of Windows.

It
shouldn't be able to grow under the applications programming barrier to
entry. Users shouldn't use it because there aren't applications. ISV's
shouldn't write to it because there aren't users. It's far from the
most--it was, a few years ago, far from the most popular platform.
Fewer users than Apple, certainly.
Why did it manage to grow? It
managed to grow because ISV's write for promising platforms where there
are profit opportunities. There is no inevitable chicken-egg problem.
There is certainly no evidence of it. And Linux, it seems to me, is a
counter example.

I won’t underestimate the role of ISV’s -
the one application I have been using for years is Netscape’s Navigator
and I like StarOffice -, but the real growth for Linux does not come
from ISV’s as Schmalensee claims. It comes from the availability of
other open-source products. As Schmalensee admits, the very existence
of open-source software surprises him, thereby of course disqualifying
its place in his argument. He can’t explain how Linux can even exist,
so it can’t fulfill the place of an example in his economical model.

I
am generally adverse to analogies, but well…if an application running
on a web server – Schmalensee could think of exactly one example when
the judge asked – can provide a “threat” (surely not an economical
concept) to Microsoft’s OS monopoly, I guess a CD can provide a threat
to General Motors, as it can be played not only in a car but also at
home. The lesson: sure I can play the CD at home, but that doesn’t
reduce the need for a car. No threat.

http://main.billwatch.net/trial/schmalensee_on_linux.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-24 02:46:42

Snippet:

Judge Rejects Microsoft Call to Dismiss Bristol Case
By Siobhan Kennedy
Computerwire

The
judge in the Bristol anti-trust case decides she wants to hear
Microsoft’s defence before ruling. The defence opens up with testimony
from VP Jim Allchin.

Government Destroys Microsoft Chief Economic Witness
By Jo Maitland
Computerwire

The
testimony phase of the US-DOJ and 19 states’ anti-trust case against
Microsoft closes with a fizzle. That Microsoft stands to lose the case
is not much in doubt, but remedies are months away and the form they
take is anybody’s guess.

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-06-25 05:35:00

Snippet: In order to get rid of its competition
in the market for Korean language word processors, Microsoft is dumping
a localized version of Word at about $9, or just above three percent of
the English version.

Aggressive Marketing Plan for New MS Word 2000
http://www.chosun.com/w21data/html/news/199906/199906230581.html

The link comes from LinuxToday that also has some links to past dumping actions by Microsoft in the Korean market:
http://linuxtoday.com/stories/7085.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-25 09:37:25

Snippet: From ComputerWire:

At one
point, Lynch produced an email entitled "NT server technology that we'd
prefer not to see on Unix." In that note, Allchin had given
instructions to two members of his team, Dan Neault and Morris Beton,
to come up with a list of technologies that should be removed from the
Wise program so that ISVs would no longer be able to write server-based
applications. "You did instruct Neault and Beton to change Wise into a
client-side program, not a client/server program, that's right isn't
it?" Lynch asked. "I wanted the Wise thing to focus on clients,"
Allchin admitted to the courthouse.

That was at the end of
summer 1997, yet Allchin had earlier testified that the first time he
had read the Wise program was in March 1998, prior to his deposition in
the Bristol case. It was also in the same time frame as Bristol was
trying to renegotiate the terms of its contract with Microsoft, which
Redmond has professed, on numerous occasions, that it was more than
happy to do.

ComputerWire
Microsoft VP Allchin Discredited by Bristol Attorney
by Siobhan Kennedy
http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt1-990625.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-25 21:00:45

Snippet: The good: Billwatch is now hosted by my
present employer on a 24×7 Solaris machine. Old news is searchable now
(case sensitive only!) and the same goes for quotes. Pages all have a
random quote now.
The bad: The last few days of news are missing, all features and most
links are missing, and the forums have gone.
The buggy: Testing has taken place to the level that the programmer has
had a “Gosh, this works!?” experience on several components. Except for
the home page, search and quotes, none of the visible functionality
works.
Clearly, this move is premature, but I would rather expose you to the
alpha site (and thereby putting up the pressure on my coding efforts)
than port the old site to a different database and PHP version.
Suggestions and comment welcome.
Case Roole
cjr@xs4all.nl
By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-06-30 10:28:59

Snippet: Judge Denies Four Microsoft Motions in
Caldera Case

http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt1-990630.html

Judge denies first MS motions in Caldera case

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990630-000021.html

Judge Benson has denied the first of Microsoft s motions for Partial
Summary Judgement with rulings on the rest to come later. Microsoft is
pursuing a divide-and-conquer strategy of breaking the case up into
components in hopes of arguing, for each component, “this piece does
not, by itself, constitute an anti-trust violation.” If the case can be
taken as a whole, which is looking more likely, then Caldera has a much
better chance of proving its anti-trust case.

By: Roy Bixler
Date: 1999-06-30 17:24:55

Summary: Feds investigate MS over accounting ‘irregularities’
by Graham Lea
Snippet: The Register
Feds investigate MS over accounting ‘irregularities’
by Graham Lea

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990701-000011.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Feds investigate MS over accounting ‘irregularities’
Date: 1999-07-01 14:53:52

Snippet: According to a study by the Business Software Alliance software piracy has lead to $11 billion revenue losses in 1998.

You can find the conclusions at:
Software Piracy Facts

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/06-29piracy2.htm

The latest news from Microsoft is that it will contribute half of what
is retrieved from piracy to charity. This is to amounts to a whopping
$5 million per year.
The big question is: why link charity to piracy proceeds?
Microsoft to Donate Anti-Piracy Proceeds to Community Outreach

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/06-29piracy.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft to Donate Anti-Piracy Proceeds to Community Outreach
Date: 1999-07-01 15:56:40

Snippet:

“PC Week Validates Mindcraft Results. And Then Some”

"Validating the original Mindcraft findings, the results of these
tests show that Windows NT Server outperforms Linux under every
configuration and test."

Microsoft never was known for its modesty and their claim of
complete victory is exaggerated. First, the latest set of benchmarks at
the PC Week labs did not exactly validate the Mindcraft results as NT’s
margin of victory was smaller in the latter set of tests. This can be
attributed to recent improvements in Linux and Mindcraft’s admitted
“mistakes” in tuning Linux in the initial tests. (See the Mindcraft’s “Openbenchmarks FAQ”.)

Also, a different set of benchmarks done by the German c’t magasine
show that NT server does not outperform Linux “under every configuration and test.”
Specifically, Linux compared well to NT when one network board was used
and Linux actually outperformed NT in a test where dynamic Web pages
generated with CGI scripts were used. The c’t test did confirm that, in
the rather outlandish Mindcraft test scenario where a server which
serves static Web pages with multiple network boards is used., NT
indeed outperforms Linux. In this case, NT is a definite win but in the
former more realistic cases, Linux competes well with NT.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: PC Week Validates Mindcraft Results. And Then Some.
Date: 1999-07-03 19:56:01

Snippet:

InfoWorld
Don’t look now, Microsoft might be spamming you
By Ed Foster
http://www.infoworld.com/articles/op/xml/990705opfoster.xml

“Microsoft is now resorting to spam as a call to action in its fight
for the freedom to inundate (oops ‘innovate’),” Mr. Smith wrote. “I was
spammed by Microsoft, and then told that by reading the message I
agreed to a EULA — I am stunned by the arrogance.”

The article comes to a rather amusing conclusion:

An interesting side note is that Microsoft’s spokesperson also said the
company has now dropped the Freedom to Innovate page from its Web site.
In a way, I think that’s too bad, because while I don’t like seeing
Microsoft spamming customers to rally political support, I think it is
perfectly within its rights to do so on its Web page. Besides, it would
have been interesting to see whether the ability to drum up a huge show
of support would have proven an effective way of demonstrating you
don’t have a monopoly.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Don’t look now, Microsoft might be spamming you
Date: 1999-07-03 19:59:40

Summary: “Microsoft today announced that it
will acquire Sendit AB, a Swedish company that develops software
solutions for digital cellular providers. Sendit, a worldwide leader in
Mobile Internet technology, will continue to develop as a business unit
within Microsoft’s Server Applications team, and Microsoft will use
Sendit’s skills and experience to establish its first product
development center in the Nordic region.”
Snippet: "Microsoft today announced that it will
acquire Sendit AB, a Swedish company that develops software solutions
for digital cellular providers. Sendit, a worldwide leader in Mobile
Internet technology, will continue to develop as a business unit within
Microsoft's Server Applications team, and Microsoft will use Sendit's
skills and experience to establish its first product development center
in the Nordic region."

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/07-01sendit.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft to Acquire Sendit
Date: 1999-07-03 20:02:40

Summary: By John Lettice
The Register
National Economic Research Associates (NERA) is a private organisation
which employs Richard Schmalensee, who appeared in the DOJ trial, and
Richard Rapp, who appeared in the Bristol trial. NERA was paid $6
million over an 18 month period for this type of service. Of course,
Microsoft’s continued retention of one organisation to provide economic
witnesses in its defence poses credibility problems in its trials.
Snippet: http://www.theregister.co.uk/990704-000006.html
By John Lettice
The Register
National Economic Research Associates (NERA) is a private organisation
which employs Richard Schmalensee, who appeared in the DOJ trial, and
Richard Rapp, who appeared in the Bristol trial. Of course, Microsoft’s
continued retention of one organisation to provide economic witnesses
in its defence poses credibility problems in its trials.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: MS paid economist witness’ company $6 million in 18 months
Date: 1999-07-05 16:56:07

Snippet: The most compelling historical analogy
of the opensource phenomenon I have seen so far is the Reformation.
Martin Luther cum suis broke the Church’s monopoly on reading the Bible
through translations to the common vernacular and by encouraging people
to deal with the book directly instead of through interpreters that had
an interest in interpreting it to support the power of their own
organisation.
The Salon article by Thomas Scoville in which the analogy was worked out it worth a second read:

Martin Luther, meet Linus Torvalds

http://www.salon.com/21st/feature/1998/11/12feature.html

An analogy that has came up more recently is that of a peasant revolt. It comes from China, where there are historical precedents.

Andrew Leonard of Salon reported on his reading of a China Youth Daily article:

Linux is like a Chinese peasant uprising

http://www.salonmagazine.com/tech/log/1999/07/06/linux_china/index.html

Unfortunately, the analysis of the analogy is very superficial.

I think a good comparison can be made with the peasant situation under the New Economic Politics of the Soviet-Union in the 1920s. But that’s something I’ll elaborate on some other time.

By: Case Roole
Reference: Linux is like a Chinese peasant uprising
Date: 1999-07-06 17:24:36

Summary: Exclusive: We reveal Gateway exec’s secret MS evidence

Secret trial evidence II – how MS brought Gateway to heel

Secret evidence III: ‘give in or we’ll audit you’ – MS

Secret evidence IV: the ‘MS Product Leverage Model’

All articles by Graham Lea.

Snippet: Exclusive: We reveal Gateway exec’s secret MS evidence

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990707-000004.html

Secret trial evidence II – how MS brought Gateway to heel

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990707-000016.html

Secret evidence III: ‘give in or we’ll audit you’ – MS

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990707-000017.html

Secret evidence IV: the ‘MS Product Leverage Model’

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990707-000018.html

All articles by Graham Lea.

By: Case Roole
Reference: Secret trial evidence: Gateway deposition
Date: 1999-07-07 13:57:23

Summary:

Microsoft loses another round to Caldera

U.S. District Judge Dee Benson denied Microsoft’s claim that
Utah-based Caldera did not have standing to bring claims for alleged
violations outside the United States.

Snippet:

Microsoft loses another round to Caldera
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,38873,00.html?owv

U.S. District Judge Dee Benson denied Microsoft’s claim that
Utah-based Caldera did not have standing to bring claims for alleged
violations outside the United States.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft loses another round to Caldera
Date: 1999-07-08 15:44:02

Snippet:

Microsoft Wanted to Kill Java and Unix Courtroom Hears
http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt1-990708.html

Once again, e-mail poses a problem for Microsoft in an anti-trust case:

“If our COM model wins then Windows wins. It is
not about making Unix a better operating system to build apps on. It
is about killing Java and then Unix.”

As it happens, part of Bristol’s business is to “make Unix a better
operating system to build apps on.” It is difficult to reconcile this
with Microsoft’s claims that they were and are willng to negotiate in
good faith with Bristol.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft Wanted to “Kill Java and Unix” Courtroom Hears
Date: 1999-07-08 16:12:54

Summary: by Graham Lea
Snippet: by Graham Lea

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990709-000007.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: MS case totters in Caldera action – $1.77bn damages?
Date: 1999-07-09 11:24:27

Summary: Writer Gary Rivlin wrote an entertaining piece for Salon about getting to put two questions to Bill Gates for his forthcoming book “The Plot to Get Bill Gates”.
Snippet: Writer Gary Rivlin wrote an entertaining piece for Salon about getting to put two questions to Bill Gates for his forthcoming book “The Plot to Get Bill Gates”.

http://www.salon1999.com/tech/feature/1999/07/06/bill_gates/index.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: “My five minutes with Bill Gates”
Date: 1999-07-09 11:44:40

Snippet: On the one hand, Microsoft is dumping
the Korean language version of Word on the Korean market for some $9.-
to eliminate revenues of Korea’s domestic word processor software
producer.
On the other, it raising the price of Windows and intensifying actions
against software license violations (called “piracy”
by software industrialists, but not in any way resembling the ancient
acts of looting ships and nailing the crew with their ears to the decks
when the ships were sunk).
With retailers protesting in the streets against Microsoft pricing and
government and educational institutions finding that their software
budgets were not realistic as they have to pay hard to Microsoft now
they have been found out to have violated its software licenses on a
grand scale – mark that I think this is unjustifyable – Koreans seem to
have noticed that depency is both expensive and wrecking their native
software industry. Good reasons to look for alternatives.
Info Ministry to Discussing Linux Support Aggressively
Korea Times

http://www.hk.co.kr/14_5/199907/t455115.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Info Ministry to Discussing Linux Support Aggressively
Date: 1999-07-10 11:49:51

Snippet: Roy Bixler wrote to the am-info (for Appraising Microsoft) mailinglist:

Yesterday, for some compatibility testing purposes, I
went to Microsoft's Web site to download the latest version of Outlook
Express mail client which comes with Internet Explorer. The package,
even though nominally 'free', comes with an End-User Licence agreement
saying "without a valid licenced copy of Windows, you have no rights."
Free only if one has already paid for Windows? Of course, this also
means that running Internet Explorer or Outlook Express under an
emulator like Wine or some hypothetical alternative OS (PetrOS?) which
runs Windows binaries is not allowed.
It would certainly be a great technical feat to come up with an
emulator or OS without any Microsoft licenced code that can run
Microsoft's own Windows apps, but I guess they want to cover all the
bases to make sure no one can profit from 'innovating' in such a way.

Mitch Stone, of Boycott Microsoft (http://www.vcnet.com/bms/) answered:

This started sometime in late 1996, as bast as I can
tell. Try this link:

http://www.infoworld.com/cgi-bin/displayNew.pl?/rcringe/rc121696.htm

Used to have an article dealing with licensing issues (this one
included) on BMS. Maybe it needs to come back. The relevant text from
this old article:
Microsoft's new software products also now include an "End User License
Agreement." A tiny clause in this "agreement" states that the software
you purchased is licensed only "to run on an authorized copy of a
Microsoft operating system." Naturally, Microsoft reserves the right to
determine what constitutes "authorization." According to InfoWorld,

Effectively, that means you are not allowed to run Word, for
example, using OS/2′s Windows emulation or any other system that
emulates the Win32 API, including Insignia’s SoftWindows 95 for the
Macintosh.

[InfoWorld: 16 Dec 1996]

ethical@1of1.net added:


The WIN-OS2 code is authorized: IBM pays Microsoft for each and every copy.

This interaction brings the following to light:

  • Microsoft’s talk of a “Windows standard” is void. Not only because
    standards are defined at the level of protocols or APIs of functional
    components such as HTTP or IMAP, but also because they explicitly
    forbid using alternative implementations of what they claim is a
    standard when using their products, even if these are “free as in
    beer”.
  • Although not relevant while there are no alternative
    implementations of Windows, the MS EULA ties the use of its application
    products to buying a Windows implementation from nobody but Microsoft.
    I expect this condition to be in violation of EU laws against product
    tying.
  • Microsoft Windows is the most expensive desktop OS with one
    exception: IBM’s OS/2. Microsoft partly owns the OS/2 code and IBM has
    to pay Microsoft for every copy they ship of this OS. This decreases
    the competitive threat OS/2 constitutes to Microsoft’s stranglehold
    over desktop operating systems: if OS/2 does well, Microsoft gets rents
    for past programming efforts. You might remember that SCO had to drag
    Microsoft to court to rid UNIX from some obsolete Xenix code that
    Microsoft had requested to be put in UNIX and that SCO had written for
    Microsoft in the first place. Microsoft didn’t allow them to drop the
    useless code and stop paying the license fees. As Microsoft wrote much
    more code for OS/2 than they owned of UNIX, I expect IBM to bleed hard
    for OS/2. (I’d love to get to know numbers on this. Would Microsoft
    get, say $3 for every copy of OS/2 shipping? Or $30?)
By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-07-11 10:36:39

Summary: Caldera update: MS condemned by its own emails
by Graham Lea

Bristol update: MS lawyers muzzle Compaq witness
by John Lettice

Snippet: Caldera update: MS condemned by its own emails
by Graham Lea

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990712-000005.html

Bristol update: MS lawyers muzzle Compaq witness
by John Lettice

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990712-000006.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Caldera update: MS condemned by its own emails
Date: 1999-07-12 10:54:34

Summary:

Microsoft invests in Rogers
Canadian Broadcast News Online

Microsoft has made yet another investment in a cable TV firm,
Canada’s Rogers Communications. As with Microsoft’s other cable TV
investments, Microsoft buys market share for its software and Rogers
agrees to use “Microsoft’s television platform” (whatever that may be.)

Snippet:

Microsoft invests in Rogers
Canadian Broadcast News Online

Microsoft has made yet another investment in a cable TV firm,
Canada’s Rogers Communications. As with Microsoft’s other cable TV
investments, Microsoft buys market share for its software and Rogers
agrees to use “Microsoft’s television platform” (whatever that may be.)

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft invests in Rogers
Date: 1999-07-13 16:06:11

Summary: Microsoft also will make a CDN $600 million (approximately $400 million U.S.) investment in Rogers.
Snippet: From Microsoft’s press release Rogers Communications and Microsoft to Bring Advanced Television Services to Canada:

The agreements announced today include the licensing of
Microsoft TV and Microsoft TV Server to support at least one million
set-top boxes, and the development of Rogers branded e-mail and
Canadian-specific content services powered by the Microsoft Network
(MSN) network of Internet services and other Microsoft properties.
Microsoft also will make a CDN $600 million (approximately $400 million
U.S.) investment in Rogers to further demonstrate Microsoft's
commitment to Rogers success in developing and rolling out new digital
services.

What a joke on economic reasoning: Microsoft and Roger's strike
agreements on the latter party forcing MS technology down the throats
of its clients, and than it is said Microsoft also will make a CDN $600 ... investment in Rogers to further demonstrate Microsoft's commitment to Rogers success in developing and rolling out new digital services. They present this as if the agreements are unrelated to the investment and the investment is primarily symbolic.


Microsoft has a long history of
working with cable companies to help accelerate the availability of
broadband access and features, such as advanced television services, as
evidenced by its previous agreements with Comcast, TCI, AT&T,
United Pan-Europe Communications, NTL, and TVCabo.

Rogers Communications and Microsoft to Bring Advanced Television Services to Canada

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/features/1999/07-12tvpak.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Rogers Communications and Microsoft to Bring Advanced Television Services to Canada
Date: 1999-07-13 16:16:05

Summary: Overview of Microsoft’s investments and acquisitions, going back to 1994.
Snippet: Overview of Microsoft’s investments and acquisitions, going back to 1994.

http://www.microsoft.com/msft/invest.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft Investments + Acquisitions
Date: 1999-07-13 20:51:04

Summary: “(..) the licensing programme wasn’t
about making Unix a better OS for application development (this is what
Bristol thought it was about) but “killing Java and then Unix.”
Snippet: (..) the licensing programme wasn’t about
making Unix a better OS for application development (this is what
Bristol thought it was about) but “killing Java and then Unix.” by John Lettice

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990714-000008.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Bristol demands $263 million as MS trial goes to jury
Date: 1999-07-14 13:33:47

Summary: While on the one hand claiming that
Bristol’s owners sought to get rich quick by sueing Microsoft, the
latter’s lawyers claimed on the other hand that Bristol sought to put
all of its competitors out of business.
Snippet: While on the one hand claiming that Bristol’s
owners sought to get rich quick by sueing Microsoft, the latter’s
lawyers claimed on the other hand that Bristol sought to put all of its
competitors out of business. by Siobhan Kennedy

http://www.computerwire.com/msoft/mt1-990714.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Redmond Says Bristol Sued to “Get Rich Quick”
Date: 1999-07-15 02:21:15

Summary: I’ll be boarding the train to Berlin in a couple of hours to attend the Wizards of OS”
conference Friday and Saturday. The conference will bring together
people from different diciplines to discuss the social-economical
aspects of open source software.
See: http://www.mikro.org/wos/
Snippet: I’ll be boarding the train to Berlin in a couple of hours to attend the Wizards of OS”
conference on Friday and Saturday. The conference will bring together
people from different diciplines to discuss social-economical aspects
of open source software.
See: http://www.mikro.org/wos/
By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-07-15 18:09:14

Summary:

MS: From Partner to Litigant
by Kristen Philipkoski
Wired

Microsoft has just sued a partner, Timeline, with the contract
between the two only a month old. In a statement, Microsoft said

“All users of SQL Server 7,
Office 2000, and any other Microsoft products that utilize
this type of technology are unencumbered by Timeline’s
patents.”

Clearly, contrary to Microsoft’s insinuations about Bristol and
Caldera, Microsoft is not above suing when a dispute about a contract
arises.

Snippet:

MS: From Partner to Litigant
by Kristen Philipkoski
Wired

Microsoft has just sued a partner, Timeline, with the contract
between the two only a month old. In a statement, Microsoft said

“All users of SQL Server 7,
Office 2000, and any other Microsoft products that utilize
this type of technology are unencumbered by Timeline’s
patents.”

Clearly, contrary to Microsoft’s insinuations about Bristol and
Caldera, Microsoft is not above suing when a dispute about a contract
arises.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: MS: From Partner to Litigant
Date: 1999-07-15 20:27:54

Summary:

Official: it’s legal to screw Unix – MS beats Bristol rap
By John Lettice
The Register

Bristol jury find Msoft not guilty, awards $1 in damages
By Siobhan Kennedy
Computerwire

The court rejected anti-trust charges against Microsoft (ruling they
do not have monopoly power with the Windows NT product in dispute)
while agreeing that Microsoft was guilty of deceptive business
practices under Connecticut state law. With the mock $1 “damage award”,
even that ruling ostensibly in Bristol’s favour is meaningless.
However, the outcome of this case should have little effect on the
federal, state and Caldera anti-trust cases against Microsoft.

Snippet:

Official: it’s legal to screw Unix – MS beats Bristol rap
By John Lettice
The Register

Bristol jury find Msoft not guilty, awards $1 in damages
By Siobhan Kennedy
Computerwire

The court rejected anti-trust charges against Microsoft (ruling they
do not have monopoly power with the Windows NT product in dispute)
while agreeing that Microsoft was guilty of deceptive business
practices under Connecticut state law. With the mock $1 “damage award”,
even that ruling ostensibly in Bristol’s favour is meaningless.
However, the outcome of this case should have little effect on the
federal, state and Caldera anti-trust cases against Microsoft.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Bristol Jury Finds Msoft Not Guilty; Awards $1 in Damages
Date: 1999-07-17 17:48:59

Summary: “A nice little business took it into
an alliance with Microsoft, then it got sucked in deeper, and then the
carrots started to disappear, replaced by the stick.”
Snippet: “A nice little business took it into an
alliance with Microsoft, then it got sucked in deeper, and then the
carrots started to disappear, replaced by the stick.”

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990718-000005.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Analysis: How MS used the WISE Trojan Horse against Unix
Date: 1999-07-18 22:47:00

Summary: “Bristol’s antitrust claim against
Microsoft appears to have foundered at the first hurdle, with the jury
deciding that there was no “relevant market” for operating systems for
either technical workstations or departmental servers. If there’s no
relevant market, then there’s no monopoly, so there’s no antitrust case
to answer.”
Snippet: “Bristol’s antitrust claim against
Microsoft appears to have foundered at the first hurdle, with the jury
deciding that there was no “relevant market” for operating systems for
either technical workstations or departmental servers. If there’s no
relevant market, then there’s no monopoly, so there’s no antitrust case
to answer.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: Bristol case: how MS escaped the guilty verdict
Date: 1999-07-19 10:57:38

Summary: “Nobody seemed to be saying that the
results were excellent evidence of monopoly profits, but it may not
escape Judge Jackson when he decides whether Microsoft has competed
illegally.”
Snippet: “Nobody seemed to be saying that the
results were excellent evidence of monopoly profits, but it may not
escape Judge Jackson when he decides whether Microsoft has competed
illegally.”

by Graham Lea

By: Case Roole
Reference: Glittering MS financials mask declining trend
Date: 1999-07-20 13:22:55

Summary: … the WSJ quoted Mary Meeker at
Morgan Stanley as saying “It’s good to see that Microsoft might be
finally trying to monetise its Internet assets.”
Snippet: … the WSJ quoted Mary Meeker at Morgan
Stanley as saying “It’s good to see that Microsoft might be finally
trying to monetise its Internet assets.”
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: MS to remove Sidewalk from Road Ahead
Date: 1999-07-20 15:41:11

Summary: On Microsoft’s purchase of Suffolk, England-based STNC: “This further demonstrated Microsoft’s commitment to, and focus
on, evolving a wireless telephone platform that will enable our
customers to access information anywhere, any time, from their
cellular phones,” said Harel Kodesh, vice president of Microsoft’s
productivity appliances unit.
Snippet: On Microsoft’s purchase of Suffolk, England-based STNC: “This further demonstrated Microsoft’s commitment to, and focus
on, evolving a wireless telephone platform that will enable our
customers to access information anywhere, any time, from their
cellular phones,” said Harel Kodesh, vice president of Microsoft’s
productivity appliances unit.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft buy adds to wireless plans
Date: 1999-07-21 18:26:37

Snippet:

Win95 lives – companies are slow to shift to 98
http://www.theregister.co.uk/990721-000018.html
By John Lettice
The Register

John Lettice’s article shows some numbers which indicate an
astonishing resiliency for Win ’95 compared to a relatively weak demand
for Win ’98. This is also taking into account that the major OEMs
generally do not give individuals the choice of installing Win ’95.
Since Win ’98 is primarily a bug-fix release (and who wouldn’t want bug
fixes?) plus the introduction of the tightly integrated Internet
Explorer Web browser, this is an indication that a significant number
of users either want a free choice of Web browser without a built-in
one to bloat the system even further or at least want the choice of no
Web browser at all. In turn, this is yet another contradiction to
Microsoft’s assertions at the US DOJ’s and states’ anti-trust trial
that the Web browser was hard-wired into Win ’98 because of customer
demand.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Win95 lives – companies are slow to shift to 98
Date: 1999-07-22 16:13:59

Snippet: As Microsoft investor relations site crashed my browser, I rely here on John Markoff’s report on Microsoft’s meeting with financial analysts.


Ballmer appeared frustrated today that analysts did not appear to be
accepting the company’s attempts to lower financial expectations for
the coming fiscal year. When the company polled the analysts in
attendance, 44 percent said they believed the company’s revenues would
grow by more than 25 percent this year. “Come on. It’s outlandish and
crazy,” Ballmer shouted at the audience. “We have more competion than
ever before. We have the law of large numbers to contend with.”

Earlier Ballmer stated with regard to UNIX and Linux:


“The Unix phenomenon is scary,” he said. “It doesn’t go away. Linux is
a serious, albeit crazy, implementation of Unix on the Intel platform.”

Furthermore, Markoff noted that:

At times, Microsoft’s presentations appeared to
contradict each other. Both Ballmer and Raikes repeatedly said that the
company was facing its fiercest competition in many years. Yet other
Microsoft executives cited industry data indicating that the company
was handily vanquishing its competition.

Analysts predict future profits on the basis of present profit centers
and expected competition, which is against predicted on the basis of
present competition.
The analysts understanding their jobs know that Microsoft has not ever
lost a market in which it was once dominant due to its ability to use
its power in other markets and to shift financial resources to invest
more in some product than any competitor could ever do.
Microsoft has given no reason why this situation should have changed.
Microsoft does claim to be suffering from fierce competition, but the
prices of its products remain flat or rise, market shares are rising in
all markets including those newly entered, such as the market for
copiers, telephones and refrigerators.
Meanwhile, PC’s are bought for the first time even by those who barely
touch them and they are replaced more rapidly than ever, and for every
one of those a new copy of Windows is bought. Furthermore, the US
government is waging a war against software license violators. As
actions in e.g. Korea have shown in the past, Microsoft’s revenues tend
to grow greatly from such government support.
Ballmer’s appeal to some “law of large numbers” doesn’t do any good
either: why would this suddenly become applicable after the present
record profits and not during the past two decades?
So, as a number of analysts are unwilling to believe Ballmer’s
unsupported claims of competition and prefer to base their expectations
on, er, analysis instead, Ballmer did what he is best at: he shouted at
them that their well-supported expectations are “crazy”.
Microsoft Tells Analysts the Future Is Good, Sort Of
by John Markoff

http://www.nytimes.com/library/tech/99/07/biztech/articles/23soft.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft Tells Analysts the Future Is Good, Sort Of
Date: 1999-07-24 11:22:21

Snippet: Nothing much changes on the Net between
Friday night and (European) Saturday morning. The latter is therefore a
good moment to visit Microsoft’s presspass website to find out what
their latest acquisitions are and what their vision of the day is.
This time I found a link to an article by Richard “Dean Dicky”
Schmalensee, allegedly published in the Boston Globe.

Apparently, the article was only in the paper edition, as the link unexpectedly led me to http://208.29.31.65/NERA/oped.html

While the title on the page is “The government’s soft case against Microsoft”, the header title is: “NERA and the Microsoft antitrust litigation: Summaries of Schmalensee rebuttal testimony”.
Going to the root directory, the IP number was resolved:
http://www.clmweb.com/, which is Cooper Leder Marketing, Inc. Guess who
is paying for this article?
As usual, Schmalensee’s claims are quite hilarious:

What’s more, AOL, Netscape and Sun still seem to be on
a collision course with Microsoft, creating Web- based applications
software that can run on any computer.

Where is the competition? Does anyone see a rising
market share for an OS or Office suite from AOL or Sun? Given
Microsoft’s market share this “running on any computer” goes for any
Windows application, minus some 4% margin for the present and
decreasing usage share of non-Microsoft operating systems. Schmalensee
is talking about some application business that doesn’t seem to compete
directly with anything Microsoft has on offer, and most surely not with
any of Microsoft’s core markets.

Start with Linux, a free operating system that can
already boast 15 million users and a burgeoning supply of applications
software.

So what’s the source of this number? A survey over
web site usage over some 78,000 websites found a Linux usage share of
0.22% and many seem to be used in dual-boot with Windows. These numbers
are mutually exclusive and most surely the former has been compiled
with the least trustworthy methodology. And, if servers are included in
these 15 million, Dean Dicky shouldn’t have said “users” as servers
don’t have them in the same way as desktop systems.


Add a myriad of Windows- independent portable devices like the Palm
Pilot that can access e-mail and surf the Web. Move on to a new
generation of home entertainment systems, notably the Sony Playstation
II, that don’t use Windows, yet could be easily adapted to
bread-and-butter home and small business applications.

So what have we here? Microsoft doesn’t have over 90%
market share in some emerging markets that Microsoft is entering while
the players in those markets are not entering Microsoft’s monopoly
markets. Even though CEO Gates has explained how appliances are
functionally dependent on PC’s to which they are additions, Schmalensee
claims competition. Whereas I learned in high-school that one calls
something competition only if it pertains to functionally equivalent
products or services, Dean Dicky adheres to a demarcation principle of
there being some functional overlap.
By this principle, the fact that people have two legs on which they can
walk would make the car industry extremely competitive, even if there
was only one car manufacturer in the world.

And whatever Microsoft’s motive in selling Windows for
a bargain price or giving away Internet Explorer, there is no evidence
that competitive threats to Windows are evaporating.

As there is no actual competition to be pointed at by
Microsoft and those it pays to defend it in court and in public, they
have to seek refuge in the notion of “competitive threats”.
If ever there was a “soft case” it is that of the clinically insane
paranoiacs that perceive “threats” from all directions where there none
touching reality.

By: Case Roole
Reference: THE GOVERNMENT’S SOFT CASE AGAINST MICROSOFT
Date: 1999-07-24 12:52:19

Summary: Microsoft’s Windows, Office and Internet Explorer programs already
dominate the personal computer software business. But founder Bill
Gates fears increasing availability of high-speed Internet access over
cable TV networks could open a door for competitors in a new world
combining the Internet and TV.
Snippet: Microsoft’s Windows, Office and Internet Explorer programs already
dominate the personal computer software business. But founder Bill
Gates fears increasing availability of high-speed Internet access over
cable TV networks could open a door for competitors in a new world
combining the Internet and TV.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: ZDNN: Microsoft: Europe’s cable guy?
Date: 1999-07-26 20:28:04

Snippet: Concerning Microsoft’s entry in
Internet Messaging, for the time being using the protocol AOL
developed, Eric Raymond observes that:

  • AOL will run out of blocking options quickly, as it has to retain compatibility with its installed base.
  • Microsoft’s present brouhaha on open standards stands in stark
    contrast to its own behavior in keeping technology proprietary, e.g. as
    with the Exchange mail protocol.

Microsoft is right, for once
by Eric S. Raymond

http://linuxtoday.com/stories/8134.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Eric S. Raymond: Microsoft is right, for once
Date: 1999-07-28 11:42:07

Summary: “Gates sold more stock in the first
half of 1999 than any other executive – $2.523 billion – but the
significance is not great since he still holds around 980 million
shares worth about $88 billion.”
Snippet: “Gates sold more stock in the first half of
1999 than any other executive – $2.523 billion – but the significance
is not great since he still holds around 980 million shares worth about
$88 billion.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: Gates tops share sale list, but foundations are shallow
Date: 1999-07-29 11:39:43

Summary: Microsoft’s breakup is being
studied by the Justice Department, which has sought advice on the
matter from at least two unnamed technology investment banks in recent
days, according to reports.
Snippet: Microsoft’s breakup is being studied by
the Justice Department, which has sought advice on the matter from at
least two unnamed technology investment banks in recent days, according
to reports.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: DOJ studies Microsoft breakup
Date: 1999-07-29 15:03:54

Snippet: Following standard operating procedure installing Microsoft’s Messenger will destroy the installation of the AOL Messenger.


“[AOL spokeswoman] Brackbill noted that unless a user changes the
original settings on the Microsoft product, it will automatically take
the AOL software’s place as the featured messaging service on the
computer. And from there, the Microsoft product persistently fights any
effort to run AOL’s messenger.”

“Once you make MSN Messenger the default service, it logs on
automatically whenever you go online. And if you try to use the AOL
service after that, even if you log off from MSN Messenger, the
Microsoft software will keep logging itself back on every few minutes
– knocking the AOL software out of commission.”

Mercury Center: Instant message battle heats up
by John Healey

http://www.mercurycenter.com/business/top/020229.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Instant message battle heats up
Date: 1999-07-29 18:39:05

Summary: But that’s not the end of the
matter …
At the end of November, there will be a WTO ministerial conference in
Seattle. It should come as no surprise that Gates and Philip Condit of
Boeing are the co-chairmen, that Gates’ father’s law firm is the legal
advisor, and that Microsoft is providing the media and public
relations. That Microsoft gave money for a teacher seminar on trade to
raise awareness, and that the WTO now uses Microsoft software is just a
minor development.
Snippet: But that’s not the end of the matter …
At the end of November, there will be a WTO ministerial conference in
Seattle. It should come as no surprise that Gates and Philip Condit of
Boeing are the co-chairmen, that Gates’ father’s law firm is the legal
advisor, and that Microsoft is providing the media and public
relations. That Microsoft gave money for a teacher seminar on trade to
raise awareness, and that the WTO now uses Microsoft software is just a
minor development.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: World trade body declares MS profits illegal
Date: 1999-07-30 05:19:18

Summary: Since what Bill Gates says he plans to
do with his fortune has all been said before, this story would not be
news except that it comes hot on the heels of leaks that the DOJ is looking into breaking up Microsoft should it win its anti-trust case.
Snippet: Since what Bill Gates says he plans to do with
his fortune has all been said before, this story would not be news
except that it comes hot on the heels of leaks that the DOJ is looking into breaking up Microsoft should it win its anti-trust case.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Gates to give away fotune
Date: 1999-08-02 04:42:18

Summary: The purpose and the timing, we
believe, was an attempt to soften American public opinion and to put
pressure on Judge Jackson to deal with Microsoft leniently, in view of
this charitable intention.
Snippet: The purpose and the timing, we believe, was
an attempt to soften American public opinion and to put pressure on
Judge Jackson to deal with Microsoft leniently, in view of this
charitable intention.
By: Case Roole
Reference: Gates’ charitable foundation: gift or PR gambit?
Date: 1999-08-02 22:20:28

Summary: “Microsoft says its own research
does not find any erosion in its public image, and claims its
favourable ratings hold steady at 75 per cent. Probably Microsoft is
using the same methodology it demonstrated to Judge Jackson.”
Snippet: “Microsoft says its own research does not
find any erosion in its public image, and claims its favourable ratings
hold steady at 75 per cent. Probably Microsoft is using the same
methodology it demonstrated to Judge Jackson.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: Master-slave Microsoft ratings drop
Date: 1999-08-03 22:13:13

Snippet: I am not interested in reporting bugs
in software and the same goes for security flaws.
What does matter to me, is how vendors deal with them. I see no reason
why Microsoft would not be able to remove the bugs and security flaws
from its proprietary ActiveX technology. However, instead of being
committed to deal with such issues, Microsoft is clearly preferring an
approach of security through obscurity
in not admitting issues.
Microsoft’s justification is that it doesn’t want to have the issue
published until it has fixed it, so prevent malice.
This reasoning is faulty. If there would not be a problem until a bug
or security flaw is widely published, there would be no reason to fix
it anyway: Microsoft could rely on obscurity.
Microsoft’s strategic silence with regard to bugs and security flaws
happens to coincide with a marketing desire to send out nothing but
positive reports on the company’s software. Microsoft’s problem is that
it is perceived that the marketing angle may well be more important
than the security-through-obscurity angle.
From Microsoft’s attitude one could easily get the impression that
Microsoft is not taking the fixing of bugs and security flaws
seriously. If one additionally considers that only new features justify
Microsoft’s asking money for “upgrades”, one could imagine that
Microsoft is more interested in having its programmers work on such new
features, than on supporting its present installed base. Of course,
Microsoft upgrades are generally also the channel for bugfixes, so
storing bugfixes and security fixes up until the bugfix may give
customers an additional incentive to buy the upgrade.
If Microsoft were truely interested in supporting its present
customers, and if Microsoft had any faith in the capability of its
programmers, it would admit to bugs and security flaws and have them
fixed the next day.
Anyway, the above is purely opinion. For some details on such matters:
The Register
Hackers exploit MS design flaws
by Graham Lea

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990803-000027.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Hackers exploit MS design flaws
Date: 1999-08-04 08:45:24

Snippet: Microsoft’s company policy to never admit being responsible for failures can lead to silly excuses:

If it was meant as a publicity stunt, the Microsoft
security challenge may have backfired. As soon as the site went online,
Microsoft ran into technical difficulties with the test server. Early
visitors reported problems with the home-page HTML and Javascript, some
serious enough to prevent them accessing the page at all. Posted status
logs indicate that the server had to be rebooted at least once because
the system log was full, and some services were unavailable at reboot.
Most significantly, the server was offline for most of Tuesday due to
what Microsoft described as “router problems”. Though intermittently
available Wednesday morning, the site was down at press time, and
appears to have been pulled from DNS servers entirely; ping tests
indicated the MS router was functional. Some Slashdot contributors
reported seeing a notice that the site had been withdrawn, but no such
notice is currently posted on any publicly accessible MS server. A
Microsoft spokesperson attributed some of the difficulties to
thunderstorms in Seattle on Tuesday, but had no comment on the site’s
status at press time.

Smart Reseller Online
Microsoft to Hackers: Crack This!
by David Raikow

http://www.zdnet.com/sr/stories/news/0,4538,2309474,00.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft to Hackers: Crack This!
Date: 1999-08-05 11:39:20

Summary:

In this case, of
course, Microsoft isn’t just any taxpayer. Rather, it is a company with
more than $17 billion in reserves that has gone to court to sue the IRS
over a comparably minuscule $16 million.

The tax deduction at issue is allowed for the entertainment industry
- for films, music tapes and compact discs. Microsoft argues that
software is just like films and music – and in some cases
indistinguishable – and should be eligible for the deduction.

The amount in question is comparably small because the dispute covers only tax returns filed in the early 1990s. …

Snippet:

In this case, of course,
Microsoft isn’t just any taxpayer. Rather, it is a company with more
than $17 billion in reserves that has gone to court to sue the IRS over
a comparably minuscule $16 million.

The tax deduction at issue is allowed for the entertainment industry
- for films, music tapes and compact discs. Microsoft argues that
software is just like films and music – and in some cases
indistinguishable – and should be eligible for the deduction.

The amount in question is comparably small because the dispute covers only tax returns filed in the early 1990s. …

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: The other Microsoft trial: software giant vs. IRS
Date: 1999-08-05 15:27:07

Summary: The next important step in the government’s
antitrust case against Microsoft Corp. happens early this week
(Tuesday) when the judge receives hundreds of pages of documents largely
summarizing months of courtroom arguments.
Snippet: The next important step in the government’s
antitrust case against Microsoft Corp. happens early this week
(Tuesday) when the judge receives hundreds of pages of documents largely
summarizing months of courtroom arguments.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft Case Summaries Expected
Date: 1999-08-09 03:03:52

Summary: And we have a new ludicrous claim,
apparently peddled to the press by a “company attorney,” for the first
surfacing of the notion of integrating the browser into the OS – in
1992, apparently.
Snippet: And we have a new ludicrous claim, apparently
peddled to the press by a “company attorney,” for the first surfacing
of the notion of integrating the browser into the OS – in 1992,
apparently.
By: Case Roole
Reference: MS filing claims browser plans started in 1992
Date: 1999-08-09 09:57:21

Summary:

“Plaintiffs may have succeeded
in portraying Microsoft as an aggressive company that occasionally
engages in tough tactics, but their burden was much higher,”
Microsoft’s brief argues. “Absent some showing that Microsoft’s actions
have actually prevented other companies from creating new software
products and getting those products into the hands of consumers, the
antitrust laws are not implicated.”

While the above is from Microsoft’s actual findng of fact, it is also worth checking out Procompetion’s remarkably accurate prediction of today’s court filing.

Snippet: “Plaintiffs may have succeeded in
portraying Microsoft as an aggressive company that occasionally engages
in tough tactics, but their burden was much higher,” Microsoft’s brief
argues. “Absent some showing that Microsoft’s actions have actually
prevented other companies from creating new software products and
getting those products into the hands of consumers, the antitrust laws
are not implicated.”

While the above is from Microsoft’s actual findng of fact, it is also worth checking out Procompetion’s remarkably accurate prediction of today’s court filing.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Feds: Antitrust trial showed Microsoft abuses
Date: 1999-08-11 04:55:04

Summary: On 3 December, a petulant and
self-important Gates emailed Shaw, Paul Maritz, Tod Nielsen and Mich
Mathews saying: “I am really surprised that we restricted distribution
of this [1 December email] so much. My comments are the best tool we
have to shift the dialog and get people to understand who gave
consumers the fair price [ie. a 'free' predatory price] for browsing.
Just putting it in AP doesn’t have much impact I don’t [sic] think. At
least we should give it to the MAGAZINE people also.”
Snippet: On 3 December, a petulant and
self-important Gates emailed Shaw, Paul Maritz, Tod Nielsen and Mich
Mathews saying: “I am really surprised that we restricted distribution
of this [1 December email] so much. My comments are the best tool we
have to shift the dialog and get people to understand who gave
consumers the fair price [ie. a 'free' predatory price] for browsing.
Just putting it in AP doesn’t have much impact I don’t [sic] think. At
least we should give it to the MAGAZINE people also.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: Behind Bill Gates’ ‘cooked’ email
Date: 1999-08-11 15:05:08

Summary: Since the end of 1998, DELL has been selling PCs without an operating system
(i.e. without Microsoft Windows) for a discount, to our satisfaction.
Hence DELL was not aimed at on the international Windows Refund Day
(February 15, 1999).

But recently this changed: it’s no longer possible to buy a PC from DELL
without Windows
! This is a form of compulsory conditional sales,
which is an infringement of both Belgian and European law.

Snippet: Since the end of 1998, DELL has been selling PCs without an operating system
(i.e. without Microsoft Windows) for a discount, to our satisfaction.
Hence DELL was not aimed at on the international Windows Refund Day
(February 15, 1999).

But recently this changed: it’s no longer possible to buy a PC from DELL
without Windows
! This is a form of compulsory conditional sales,
which is an infringement of both Belgian and European law.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft forces DELL to deliver Windows
Date: 1999-08-11 19:08:15

Summary: The DoJ document is shot through
with embarrassing internal documentation from Microsoft which lends
support to these claims. Faced with this Microsoft’s defence has taken
an intriguing (some might say, desperate) approach.
The company’s own finding of facts relies heavily on the written
evidence provided by its witnesses. This was fairly comprehensively
dismantled by the DoJ in cross-examination, and the subpoenaed MS
documents played a major part in undermining it. Microsoft, however,
argues that all of this can be categorised as mere courtroom theatrics,
and should therefore be discounted.
Snippet: The DoJ document is shot through with
embarrassing internal documentation from Microsoft which lends support
to these claims. Faced with this Microsoft’s defence has taken an
intriguing (some might say, desperate) approach. The company’s own
finding of facts relies heavily on the written evidence provided by its
witnesses. This was fairly comprehensively dismantled by the DoJ in
cross-examination, and the subpoenaed MS documents played a major part
in undermining it. Microsoft, however, argues that all of this can be
categorised as mere courtroom theatrics, and should therefore be
discounted.
By: Case Roole
Reference: DoJ files on MS: ‘broad pattern of unlawful conduct’
Date: 1999-08-12 10:09:21

Summary: Programmer used ruse to discredit AOL’s Instant Messenger defense
Microsoft Corp. acknowledged Thursday that one of its programmers
apparently masqueraded as an independent computer consultant earlier
this week in an effort to discredit America Online’s tactics in the
companies’ quarrel over instant messaging.
Snippet: Programmer used ruse to discredit AOL’s Instant Messenger defense
Microsoft Corp. acknowledged Thursday that one of its programmers
apparently masqueraded as an independent computer consultant earlier
this week in an effort to discredit America Online’s tactics in the
companies’ quarrel over instant messaging.
By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft caught in `dirty trick’ vs. AOL
Date: 1999-08-13 15:10:20

Summary: The trial testimony, exhibits and
company “Findings of Fact” also point up a core belief Microsoft is
institutionally convinced that someone else’s distant dream amounts to
a clear and present threat to Microsoft’s survival, no matter how tiny
a market share an erstwhile competitor may enjoy. Prior bad acts are
therefore legitimate because someone, someday, may threaten the
business.
Snippet: The trial testimony, exhibits and company
“Findings of Fact” also point up a core belief Microsoft is
institutionally convinced that someone else’s distant dream amounts to
a clear and present threat to Microsoft’s survival, no matter how tiny
a market share an erstwhile competitor may enjoy. Prior bad acts are
therefore legitimate because someone, someday, may threaten the
business.
By: Case Roole
Reference: The `Findings of Fiction’ in Microsoft trial
Date: 1999-08-13 15:12:43

Summary: “The current fight between AOL and Microsoft over instant
messaging shows how the public loses when companies produce
similar but incompatible products. The same
ridiculous situation exists for browsing the Web because browser
makers have failed to implement the common set of standards. If
Microsoft wants to argue that common standards are needed for
instant messaging, they should be prepared to implement existing
Web standards in their browser.”
Snippet: “The current fight between AOL and Microsoft over instant
messaging shows how the public loses when companies produce
similar but incompatible products. The same
ridiculous situation exists for browsing the Web because browser
makers have failed to implement the common set of standards. If
Microsoft wants to argue that common standards are needed for
instant messaging, they should be prepared to implement existing
Web standards in their browser.”
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: WEB STANDARDS PROJECT CALLS ON MICROSOFT TO FULLY SUPPORTSTANDARDS …
Date: 1999-08-13 15:50:30

Summary: I wish Redhat Software the best, but I
can’t help expecting that the stock of this company is going to reflect
that fact that it operates in a crowded commodity market.
It is hilarious that the company’s market capitalization is now
calculated to be $5.69 billion.
Anyway, read about it in The Register:
Red Hat stock shoots past Microsoft’s

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990814-000005.html

Snippet: I wish Redhat Software the best, but I can’t
help expecting that the stock of this company is going to reflect that
fact that it operates in a crowded commodity market.
It is hilarious that the company’s market capitalization is now
calculated to be $5.69 billion.
Anyway, read about it in The Register:
Red Hat stock shoots past Microsoft’s

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990814-000005.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Red Hat stock shoots past Microsoft’s
Date: 1999-08-14 21:22:04

Summary:

Government lawyers have
maintained that Microsoft illegally combined its Internet browser and
desktop computer operating system to protect its monopoly power in the
market for desktop computer operating systems. They make the point that
by not allowing users the option of removing the browser, the company
has in some instances increased a user’s exposure to security risks,
such as computer viruses.

In its own set of documents, Microsoft states that consumers receive
substantial benefits from the combination. But the software giant does
not appear to address the security issue — and such omissions could
prove critical to the outcome of the case. For instance, the security
claim is important because it involves the question of whether
combining the operating system and browser actually benefited consumers.

Snippet:

Government lawyers have
maintained that Microsoft illegally combined its Internet browser and
desktop computer operating system to protect its monopoly power in the
market for desktop computer operating systems. They make the point that
by not allowing users the option of removing the browser, the company
has in some instances increased a user’s exposure to security risks,
such as computer viruses.

In its own set of documents, Microsoft states that consumers receive
substantial benefits from the combination. But the software giant does
not appear to address the security issue — and such omissions could
prove critical to the outcome of the case. For instance, the security
claim is important because it involves the question of whether
combining the operating system and browser actually benefited consumers.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Potential security risk is key issue
Date: 1999-08-15 02:52:19

Summary: “In private acknowledgment that it
wasn’t winning the public-image wars in its DOJ battle–Microsoft
launched a concerted campaign to change the public image of the company
this past spring.”
Snippet: “In private acknowledgment that it wasn’t
winning the public-image wars in its DOJ battle–Microsoft launched a
concerted campaign to change the public image of the company this past
spring.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: The Trials Of Bill Gates
Date: 1999-08-16 19:18:42

Snippet: The Register
(http://www.theregister.co.uk/) published a Special Report on the
Findings of Fact in the Microsoft antitrust trial by way of a series of
articles by Graham Lea.
Special report: Trial truth according to Microsoft

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990818-000004.html

Special report: Microsoft’s pitch on antitrust

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990818-000005.html

Special report: MS on the threat to its position

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990818-000006.html

Special report: MS on the Netscape-AOL deal

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990818-000007.html

Special report: MS on the threat from Linux et al

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990818-000008.html

By: Case Roole
Reference: Special Report on Findings of Fact in Microsoft antitrust trial
Date: 1999-08-18 12:26:36

Summary:

Microsoft, on learning that their “secure” audio format had been cracked, spins the story
so as to minimise the work of the crackers. Here is the rebuttal from
the original source of the story, MP3 site Dimensional Music.

To protect ourselves, and the integrity of our reports,
we feel the need to respond to Microsoft when they say unfuck.exe is no
different from a program named audiojacker or total recorder which
takes audio from your sound card and converts it to a WAV file. This
has nothing to do with what UNFUCK.EXE does! UNFUCK.EXE actaully breaks
the protection on any file. There is no loss in quality, the file isn’t
re-recorded or captured in some way.

Snippet:

Microsoft, on learning that their “secure” audio format had been cracked, spins the story
so as to minimise the work of the crackers. Here is the rebuttal from
the original source of the story, MP3 site Dimensional Music.

To protect ourselves, and the integrity of our reports,
we feel the need to respond to Microsoft when they say unfuck.exe is no
different from a program named audiojacker or total recorder which
takes audio from your sound card and converts it to a WAV file. This
has nothing to do with what UNFUCK.EXE does! UNFUCK.EXE actaully breaks
the protection on any file. There is no loss in quality, the file isn’t
re-recorded or captured in some way.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft’s response to UNFUCK.EXE
Date: 1999-08-19 05:51:01

Snippet: Sometimes news is not so much what is said, as rather who says it and where.
One only has to see how Jesse Berst is crucified in the Talkback
section to appreciate that he dares to write what he did about the
strategy behind Microsoft’s investments and acquisitions.
Following the Microsoft Money Trail
by Jesse Berst

http://www.zdnet.com/anchordesk/story/story_3756.html

The only exceptions to the spending spree have been a
game or two and a token payoff to Inprise (formerly Borland). For a
full list of Microsoft acquisitions and investments, click to Page 2.
But don’t be fooled. Microsoft doesn’t really want to be in the access
business. By investing in these areas it accomplishes three things: Jump starting broadband and wireless growth. Slow deployment is holding Microsoft (and everybody else) back.

Buying its way into markets where Microsoft products aren’t good
enough to make it on their own. For instance, it invests in cable
companies in return for getting WinCE on those companies’ set-top
boxes. Blockading enemies. By partnering with companies early and
writing exclusive deals, Microsoft blocks out rivals. If that’s the
reason for the investments in access, then why the lack of investment
in the software business? Simple — because the company is now in the
“milk the market” phase, a strategy perfected over two decades by
Computer Associates and now being put in place by Microsoft. Computer
Associates would buy a company (often a database company), fire most of
its employees and then pillage the customers for years. It knew those
customers had huge investments in applications running on top of the
database and wouldn’t switch unless they absolutely had to. Microsoft
knows the world has a huge investment in Windows and won’t switch
unless forced. So it will continue to drain as much money from
customers as possible, while using that money to finance forays into
the Internet era.
Microsoft is putting its enormous sums of money where all our futures
are. The result? You can expect prices of Windows, Windows applications
and Windows support to creep upwards, not downwards like all other
technology products.

By: Case Roole
Reference: Following the Microsoft MoneyTrail
Date: 1999-08-21 15:13:19

Summary:

The appellate decision made it possible for both sides to claim victory.

Sun said that it thought “Judge Whyte will make the necessary
findings to sustain the injunction.” Microsoft said it is not
anticipating making any “substantial product changes” as a result of
the appellate court decision.

Sun and Microsoft are not discussing any settlement, but Sun said yesterday it would welcome any interest by Microsoft in talks.

Snippet:

The appellate decision made it possible for both sides to claim victory.

Sun said that it thought “Judge Whyte will make the necessary
findings to sustain the injunction.” Microsoft said it is not
anticipating making any “substantial product changes” as a result of
the appellate court decision.

Sun and Microsoft are not discussing any settlement, but Sun said yesterday it would welcome any interest by Microsoft in talks.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: MS wins Sun appeal – but it’s probably only temporary
Date: 1999-08-25 14:47:10

Summary:

Graham Lea has written a series which summarises the DOJ’s findings of fact.

Snippet:

Graham Lea has written a series which summarises the DOJ’s findings of fact.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: DoJ trial summary damns MS with facts
Date: 1999-08-25 15:32:02

Summary: Steven Levy deserves credit for finding
a way to write a highly positive article on Bill Gates. As Gates being
nice to his children and being enthusiastic for an entire weekend about
the “ClearType” the developers in his pay came up with doesn’t undo any
monopolistic practices of his company, the article contributes nothing
to the evaluation Microsoft’s alleged monopolistic actions.
The following fragment – actually the concluding paragraph – indicates
the degree to which the 8 page long article bores Newsweek’s
readership:

That’s another part of Being Bill Gates: confounding
our impressions of what the richest guy in the world must be like by
simply being a human being. We’ve heard and assimilated the tales of
amazing business acumen, icy competitiveness, unnerving genius,
uber-nerdness. What we find amazing are details that would be
unremarkable in, well, mere mortals: a solid family life, a rich sense
of humor and an affinity for a good movie. “His brain operates
different,” says Seattle businessman and Gates friend Seth Landau, “but
the rest of him is just like us.” Now that’s an innovative concept.

“Behind the Gates Myth”
by Steven Levy

http://newsweek.com/nw-srv/printed/us/st/ty0109_1.htm

Snippet: Steven Levy deserves credit for finding a way
to write a highly positive article on Bill Gates. As Gates being nice
to his children and being enthusiastic for an entire weekend about the
“ClearType” the developers in his pay came up with doesn’t undo any
monopolistic practices of his company, the article contributes nothing
to the evaluation Microsoft’s alleged monopolistic actions.
The following fragment – actually the concluding paragraph – indicates
the degree to which the 8 page long article bores Newsweek’s
readership:

That’s another part of Being Bill Gates: confounding
our impressions of what the richest guy in the world must be like by
simply being a human being. We’ve heard and assimilated the tales of
amazing business acumen, icy competitiveness, unnerving genius,
uber-nerdness. What we find amazing are details that would be
unremarkable in, well, mere mortals: a solid family life, a rich sense
of humor and an affinity for a good movie. “His brain operates
different,” says Seattle businessman and Gates friend Seth Landau, “but
the rest of him is just like us.” Now that’s an innovative concept.

Behind the Gates Myth
by Steven Levy

http://newsweek.com/nw-srv/printed/us/st/ty0109_1.htm

By: Case Roole
Reference: Behind the Gates Myth
Date: 1999-08-27 23:11:03

Snippet: AT&T and Bristol fought Microsoft
in court to retain their rights to the Windows sources which they
needed to produce portability and interoperability products.
For a consumer the meaning of the word Windows is clear: whatever is
the latest version of the operating systems that Microsoft allows OEMs
to sell. Today this is effectively Windows9X and NT. For the law,
things are different. Any contract with Microsoft mentions specific
version of the operating system and Microsoft can terminate any such
contract by renaming the OS. If they call it Windows9X with Service
Pack Y, it is Windows9X, but if they call it Windows0A it is a
completely different product contractwise.
The same approach helped Microsoft escape from having to support java
in as far as it was heading for standardization.
Compaq was caught in this trap too. It paid Microsoft for the honor to
produce Windows NT code, but got no IP from it. No doubt Compaq has
become aware by the mentioned lawsuits that Microsoft could at any time
pull the rug from under Compaq’s porting efforts by nullifying the
contract, thereby destroying the value of Compaq’s investment in the
NT/Alpha platform.
Compaq has now jumped ship from this unfavorable situation. Three
things thave have come up are interesting:

  • It has become very clear that Microsoft is unwilling to support
    non-Intel platforms, unless being paid for handsomely. This is what
    Compaq essentially did by developing the NT/Alpha product for
    Microsoft.
  • Compaq claims to expect Linux to “drive Alpha volume”, so
    apparently Linux is more attractive for Compaq than Windows NT wrt the
    Alpha platform. Could Microsoft be too expensive? Unsupportive? Unable
    or unwilling to offer a long-term roadmap for this platform?
  • Whereas news reporting emphasis was on the doom that was to
    come over the processors Microsoft abandoned NT support for in the past
    (MIPS and PowerPC), the present emphasis is on Microsoft’s inability to
    support a 64-bit platform and the apparent unportable nature of Windows
    and Microsoft application software. This will trouble Microsoft when
    hardware development makes leaps.

Leaked Compaq Q&A shows level of 64-bit NT Alpha chaos

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990826-000016.html

How a leaked Pesatori Alpha NT customer letter reads

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990826-000026.html

MS trashes own 64-bit plans by killing Alpha NT

http://www.theregister.co.uk/990827-000021.html

No maybes about it, Win2k will ship this year
by Mary-Jo Foley

http://www.zdnet.com/sr/stories/column/0,4712,2321830,00.html

The Retreat: The Loss of the Portability Battle
by Paul Ferris

http://linuxtoday.com/story.php3?sn=9262

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-08-27 23:59:46

Summary: If Microsoft feels it has to
offer MSN free, it is hard to see how it will be able to recover its
costs – and the European Commission may decide to investigate
whether Microsoft is abusing its dominant position by leveraging its
dominance in other markets.
Snippet: If Microsoft feels it has to offer MSN
free, it is hard to see how it will be able to recover its costs – and
the European Commission may decide to investigate
whether Microsoft is abusing its dominant position by leveraging its
dominance in other markets.
By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft to relaunch MSN in Europe
Date: 1999-08-30 15:51:23

Summary:

In addition to some serious spin
upon reports of of the MSN/Hotmail security breach, Microsoft avoid
taking responsibility by blaming the hackers for the breach. The notion
of “security through obscurity” is thoroughly discredited in the
security community. Blaming the problem on the hackers conveniently
ignores the fact that the potential for a security problem would still
exist without the hackers.

See:

Snippet:

In addition to some serious spin upon
reports of the MSN/Hotmail security breach, Microsoft avoids taking
responsibility by blaming the hackers for publicising the breach. The
hackers’ only fault may have been in not notifying Microsoft of the
breach first, but the notion of “security through obscurity” is a
thoroughly discredited one in the security community. Blaming the
problem on the hackers conveniently ignores the fact that the potential
for a security problem would still exist without the hackers.

See:
MS failed to spot Hotmail hack threat
and
Hotmail hole exposes free email accounts

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: MS failed to spot Hotmail hack threat
Date: 1999-09-02 07:11:05

Summary:

The government, for its
part, says that Microsoft advances ‘the remarkable argument’ that
‘because Microsoft felt it necessary to act to crush potential
competitive threats, this means that Microsoft could not be a
monopolist since a monopolist would not face competitive threats in the
first place.’ “

Snippet:

The government, for its part,
says that Microsoft advances ‘the remarkable argument’ that ‘because
Microsoft felt it necessary to act to crush potential competitive
threats, this means that Microsoft could not be a monopolist since a
monopolist would not face competitive threats in the first place.’ “

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft/DOJ file blistering rebuttals
Date: 1999-09-11 04:21:46

Snippet:

When you look at the hype versus the reality today there is a big disconnect.”

Aubrey Edwards, group product manager for Microsoft’s forthcoming Windows NT upgrade Windows 2000, referring to Linux


[The Linux hype has already peaked.] Cold hard reality is coming to bear.

Charles Fitzgerald, director of business development in Microsoft’s
software development unit,
While Microsoft’s executives proclaim the end of Linux to the press, as
is found in the Boston Globe September 1999 article from which the
above quotes were taken
(http://www.boston.com/dailyglobe2/250/business/Lesson_s_of_a_waylaid_giant_slayer_+.shtml),
its lawyers go out of their way to tell a different story to the judge
presiding over the antitrust trial against Microsoft. Unable to base a
defense on the evidence introduced during the depositions, Microsoft’s
lawyers keep grasping every straw. The market capitalization of Redhat
is supposed to indicate that Linux competes with Microsoft’s desktop
monopolies. But referring to financial valuation is not sufficient to
indicate strength specific markets.
Once more those in Microsoft’s service attempt to escape the burden of
giving relevant evidence and seek refuge in speculations regarding the
future. And once more their is a “big disconnect” between the claims of
different Microsoft workers.
Once one accepts contradiction in one’s system of logical axioms, no
claim is less true or false than another. Microsoft has accepted this
new axiom long ago.

By: Case Roole
Reference: Lesson’s of a waylaid ‘giant-slayer’
Date: 1999-09-13 17:58:34

Summary: There is nothing like central ownership
if central control is your goal. Earlier this year Microsoft entered
into an “alliance” with Allaire, and nothing has been heard of
Allaire’s intentions to port its ColdFusion server to Linux. More
recently, Borland become owned to a significant degree by Microsoft and
now Visio is wholly acquired. The days of the independent software
producers are numbered.
Snippet: There is nothing like central ownership if
central control is your goal. Earlier this year Microsoft entered into
an “alliance” with Allaire, and nothing has been heard of Allaire’s
intentions to port its ColdFusion server to Linux. More recently,
Borland become owned to a significant degree by Microsoft and now Visio
is wholly acquired. The days of the independent software producers are
numbered.
By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft buys Visio for $1.3 billion
Date: 1999-09-15 20:19:10

Snippet: Perhaps the United States have not yet
reached the level of monopolisation once present in the Soviet-Union,
but the political results of the demise of the market-system are
already coming to light.

The Soviet-Union had its “spontaneous outbursts” of popular outrage
in the form of parades organized and payed for by the state. Of course,
this happened covertly as the truth of the matter would have a negative
impact on the spontaneous character of the event.

Similarly, in the United States today, we find popular outrage
to be nothing but a staged event, where the participants have been
carefully selected and all expenses have been secretly paid by the
party for which they are demonstrating.

When Microsoft’s secret plan to start a “grass-roots” political
campaign to defend the company’s actions last year, the company
admitted that they made plans, but they told the public that these were
not to be implemented. Did you believe Microsoft’s claim?

Microsoft Admits Deception Firm paid for institute’s ads backing its antitrust position

By: Case Roole
Reference: Microsoft Admits Deception – Firm paid for institute’s ads backing its antitrust position
Date: 1999-09-21 18:51:48

Summary:

Bill Gates’ share of
Microsoft has dropped from 19.8 per cent to 15.3 per cent since 29
January, according to Microsoft’s proxy statement released yesterday.

Snippet:

Bill Gates’ share of Microsoft
has dropped from 19.8 per cent to 15.3 per cent since 29 January,
according to Microsoft’s proxy statement released yesterday.

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Gates’ stake in MS drops 4.5 per cent
Date: 1999-09-29 11:45:54

Snippet: Microsoft’s Linux hit team is continuing its work to undermine the statements of Microsoft’s witnesses in court.

What do you think of the following:

Myth: Linux can replace Windows on the desktop
Reality: Linux Makes No Sense at the Desktop

The article “Linux Myths” consists of claims that
are mostly essences of truth wrapped in lawyers of claims that lead to
untrue conclusions. Exactly, what we have learned to expect from
Microsoft.
See:

http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver/nts/news/msnw/LinuxMyths.asp

By: Case Roole
Reference: Linux Myths
Date: 1999-10-06 10:15:15

Summary: Mr. French thinks that the U.S.
Government should not extract its pound of flesh from Microsoft.
Instead throw them to the dogs — let every injured party sue
individually.
Snippet: It’s an interesting notion. If Judge Jackson
does rule that Microsoft has a monopoly the floodgates will open and a
flood of law suits will begin. Given access to the evidence that the
government has collected, some of these suits are bound to succeed. If
nothing else it should keep all of Microsoft’s executives so busy
testifying in various courts that they can’t do much more harm.
I suspect that this will occur no matter whether the government manages
to apply any kind of remedies at all.
By: Rick Fane
Reference: The Government Shouldn’t Be the One to Make Microsoft Pay
Date: 1999-10-09 14:31:14

Summary:

The catch is this:
E-wallets are only effective if many online retailers adopt them. So
Microsoft is trying to get as many retailers to sign up for Passport
with the possible goal of creating an e-wallet standard, said Barry
Parr, an analyst at research firm International Data Corporation.

“My belief is that ultimately [Microsoft] wants to take a percentage of every transaction,” said Parr

Snippet:

The catch is this: E-wallets
are only effective if many online retailers adopt them. So Microsoft is
trying to get as many retailers to sign up for Passport with the
possible goal of creating an e-wallet standard, said Barry Parr, an
analyst at research firm International Data Corporation.

“My belief is that ultimately [Microsoft] wants to take a percentage of every transaction,” said Parr

By: Roy Bixler
Reference: Microsoft unveils e-wallet service
Date: 1999-10-11 19:34:35

Snippet: Rick Moen wrote an interesting account
of how Microsoft produces trade news through “independent”
organizations. This time its front is Gartner, that wrote on the coming
demise of Linux.
See:

http://www.egroups.com/group/svlug/21219.html

By: Case Roole
Date: 1999-10-16 21:27:19

Summary: “The meeting between 8 Eurolinux
representatives and 3 members of the European Commission’s Directorate
General 15 took place on 1999-10-15 16-17 in Brussels in the DG XV
office.”
Snippet: “The meeting between 8 Eurolinux
representatives and 3 members of the European Commission’s Directorate
General 15 took place on 1999-10-15 16-17 in Brussels in the DG XV
office.”
By: Case Roole
Reference: EUROLINUX meets EU legislators
Date: 1999-10-22 01:44:22

Snippet: Aside from its immediate legal significance, Microsoft’s Revised Findings of Fact
is relevant because it presents a bottom line of accepted claims that
other Microsoft publications cannot contradict without the possibility
of serious legal repercussions.

Microsoft’s claim that the Windows “platform” is better kept pure
and completely under Microsoft’s control, in combination with the claim
that java is a competing platform and hence like Windows, contradicts
Microsoft’s stance in the Sun’s lawsuit over java.

Similarly, claims in Microsoft’s Linux Myths document contradict claims made in Microsoft’s Revised Findings of Fact.

Wider knowledge of what Microsoft has claimed as being true in
court, will help those defending against wild allegations by Microsoft
and will ultimately help making Microsoft a more honest company.

In order to help those interested in the fate of Linux defend
themselves against publications like Microsoft’s “Linux Myths”, I have extracted all fragments from Microsoft’s Revised Findings of Fact containing the word “Linux”.

By: Case Roole
Reference: Revised Findings of Fact
Date: 1999-10-24 23:45:00

Summary: “Microsoft’s bald attempt to cut
funding for its adversary, in the middle of litigation, isn’t normal
politics — even by our current debased standards.”
Snippet: “Microsoft’s bald attempt to cut funding
for its adversary, in the middle of litigation, isn’t normal politics
– even by our current debased standards.”
By: Case Roole
Reference:
Print Edition Today’s Editorials Sunday Outlook Front Page Articles On
Our Site Talk Central Editorials Hardball and Windows
Date: 1999-10-28 02:27:18

Summary: I have extracted those paragraphs from
Judge Jackson’s findings of fact in the antitrust case against
Microsoft that contain the word “Linux” or “open-source”.
Snippet: I have extracted those paragraphs from Judge
Jackson’s findings of fact in the antitrust case against Microsoft that
contain the word “Linux” or “open-source”.
By: Case Roole
Reference: “Linux” and “Open-Source” in Microsoft Antitrust Judge’s Findings of
Fact
Date: 1999-11-06 23:52:09

Also see:

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An invade, divide, and conquer Grand Plan

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