Bonum Certa Men Certa

Bill Gates Refers to His Business as “Jihad” and Accuses Java of Being a “Religion” With “Rabid” Supporters

Gates, a hypocritical businessman and college dropout (he wasn't a particularly good college student), has turned computing into religious wars (or cults) rather than a technical (scientific) endeavour

Dahlia and rosesSummary: Peace disallowed by Bill Gates, as usual; to him, this is all just a religious war that strives to cull out and eliminate or convert the 'infidels' (those who reject his religion); the Bill Gates deposition tapes show his deep concerns and fear of Java APIs

THE Bill Gates deposition has material relevant to the Java API case that's going to SCOTUS and is already being discussed.

"Microsoft still treats GNU/Linux users in this way, equating geeks with fanatics."Transcripts are included, but we've cut aside the relevant bits, which exposed a deep attitudinal problem. The word “Jihad” was used a lot [1, 2, 3, 4]; if Bill Gates views his business as a “Jihad”, then why not resort to insulting projections, insinuating that people who like Java are "rabid" (his word) religious fanatics. Microsoft still treats GNU/Linux users in this way, equating geeks with fanatics.

The text below refers to Sun's NetPC (NC). For those who don't know what it's all about, check our wiki pages. Here we go: ("A" is Bill Gates, where "Q" is the interrogator, asking Questions)

24 A. I don't remember seeing it.
25 Q. The subject of this e-mail is "Overview

1 slides for Billg/NC & Java session with 14+'s on
2 Monday." Do you see that?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And I think you identified the 14+'s
5 as the -- some group of executives; is that correct?
6 A. No.
7 Q. What is the 14+'s?
8 A. It's people above a certain level,
9 primarily engineers. Also executives, but mostly
10 engineers.
11 Q. It's all the people in the company
12 above a certain level, the 14 level?
13 A. Which are mostly engineers and not
14 executives.
15 Q. How many people are there in the 14+'s
16 group?
17 A. It's a good question. I think around
18 200 to 300.
19 Q. And these would be the people in the
20 200 or 300 top rated jobs in the company; is that
21 correct?
22 A. If top means the best compensation,
23 yes.
24 Q. Now, do you recall the slides that are
25 attached to this e-mail?

1 A. I remember when I testified earlier
2 seeing these and saying that I was pretty sure that I
3 never presented these slides.
4 Q. Do you recall whether someone else
5 presented these slides in January of 1997?
6 A. I'm not sure. I remember looking at
7 the slides and thinking probably not.
8 Q. Let me ask you to look at the third
9 page of the exhibit, which is headed "Key Platform
10 Challenge." It is page 2 of the charts and page 3 of
11 Exhibit 383, in which it says "NC & Java are platform
12 challenges." Do you see that?
13 A. Uh-huh.
14 Q. Did you believe in January of 1997 that
15 Java was a platform challenge?
16 A. Not Java the language, but some of the
17 Java runtime APIs that were being promoted to ISPs in
18 the way that Sun and others were talking about
19 enhancing them were platform challenges.
20 Q. When reference is made here to Java, do
21 you understand that to refer to what you refer to as
22 Java runtime APIs?
23 A. I'm not sure.
24 Q. Are you aware of people asserting that
25 Java runtime APIs were a platform challenge in or

1 about January of 1997?
2 A. I just told you that we looked at what
3 was going on in terms of the plans of Sun and other
4 people with Java runtime APIs as being a platform
5 challenge.
6 Q. Are you aware of any other platform
7 challenge represented by Java other than Java runtime
8 APIs?
9 A. No.
10 Q. So would it be fair to say that you
11 believe that when reference is made here to Java, the
12 reference means Java runtime APIs since it asserts
13 here that Java is a platform challenge?
14 A. It's the best way to make sense of a
15 document that I haven't seen until my deposition, as
16 far as I know.

A little further down:

15 Q. And did Mr. Stimac tell you that he was
16 thinking about taking a job with IBM?
17 A. I think he did.
18 Q. And did he tell you that one of his
19 concerns was whether IBM's relationship with
20 Microsoft would be a problem?
21 A. I see that in the e-mail. I don't
22 remember it specifically.
23 Q. Do you remember people at IBM being
24 concerned about IBM's relationship with Microsoft
25 being a problem?

1 A. No.
2 Q. Do you remember Mr. Stimac telling you
3 that he was concerned about whether IBM's
4 relationship with Microsoft would be a problem either
5 here or -- or at any other time?
6 A. No, I don't remember that.
7 Q. In response to that you say that you
8 told him that "The Java religion coming out of the
9 software group is a big problem." Do you see that?
10 A. Uh-huh.
11 Q. Did you tell Mr. Stimac that?
12 A. I don't remember telling him that.
13 Q. Now, when you talk about the Java
14 religion coming out of the software group, you're
15 talking about IBM's software group; correct, sir?
16 A. I'm not sure.
17 Q. Well, this sentence immediately follows
18 Mr. Stimac purporting to be concerned about whether
19 IBM's relationship with Microsoft would be a problem
20 and immediately precedes a sentence in which you say
21 you told him that IBM refused to big anything related
22 to Backoffice.

And separately (much later)

11 The next paragraph you say, "Overall we
12 will never have the same relationship with IBM that
13 we have with Compaq, Dell and even HP because of
14 their software ambitions. I could deal with this
15 just fine if they weren't such rabid Java backers."
16 Now, when you refer in that sentence to
17 "they" as in "I could deal with this just fine if
18 they weren't such rabid Java backers," you're again
19 talking about IBM; correct?
20 A. Parts of IBM. It's important to
21 distinguish different groups in IBM.
22 Q. And the different groups in IBM would
23 include perhaps, among others, the software group as
24 one and the PC group as another; correct?
25 A. That's right.

1 Q. At the end of that you say that you are
2 willing to take some risk in improving the
3 relationship and you think that steps ought to be
4 taken to approach them, and you end by saying "We
5 should position it as let's do some things that are
6 good for both of us but which require some of the
7 rhetoric to be lowered on both sides. On their side
8 I mean Java and NC."
9 And "their side" you're talking about
10 IBM's side?
11 A. I think so.
12 Q. And what you're saying is that you want
13 a message conveyed to IBM that in order to improve
14 the relationship, you want some of their rhetoric
15 lowered on Java and NC?
16 A. No.
17 Q. No? Did you want IBM to lower their
18 rhetoric on Java?
19 A. I actually explain in this message that
20 I thought the rhetoric was actually hurting IBM
21 itself, independent of Microsoft.
22 Q. Did you think it was hurting Microsoft?
23 A. I wasn't sure. In terms of specifics,
24 I wasn't sure.
25 Q. When you say that you could deal with

1 IBM's relationship just fine if IBM wasn't such rabid
2 Java backers, weren't you saying that you thought
3 that IBM's rabid backing of Java was bad for
4 Microsoft?
5 A. I know at this time we thought some of
6 the claims around Java were just plain false and
7 weren't doing customers any favors by leading them
8 down a belief that certain things were solved that
9 were not solved.
10 Q. My question, Mr. Gates, is in October
11 of 1997, did you believe that what you refer to here
12 as IBM's rabid backing of Java was something that was
13 hurting Microsoft?
14 A. I can't point to any particular hurting
15 that it was doing. We didn't think it was accurate
16 in terms of what technically could be achieved with
17 Java.
18 Q. Let me put the question this way. In
19 or about October of 1997, did you want to stop IBM
20 from being what you refer to here as a rabid Java
21 backer?
22 A. We thought some of the rabidness was
23 hurting IBM as well as the industry as a whole.
24 Q. Did you believe it was hurting
25 Microsoft, or were you just doing this as sort of a

1 public spirited company to try to help IBM from
2 hurting itself?
3 A. I can't point to any particular damage,
4 but we certainly would have preferred if the more
5 extreme statements we didn't think were true, if they
6 weren't pushing those forward.
7 Q. Mr. Gates, let me put it this way. In
8 October of 1997, were you trying to get IBM to reduce
9 its public support for Java?
10 A. I say in here that under some
11 circumstance the rhetoric should be lowered on both
12 sides and that I think that's -- you know, that makes
13 sense in certain circumstances.
14 Q. I don't think you actually say in
15 certain circumstances, do you, sir? You may have
16 meant that, I'm not saying you didn't mean it, I'm
17 just saying those words don't appear here, do they?
18 A. No. It's all about "I am willing to
19 take some risk in improving the relationship and
20 think you should approach them on steps for
21 improvement." It's in that vein that I talk about
22 rhetoric being lowered on both sides.
23 Q. And then you go on to say that you mean
24 on IBM's side they lower the rhetoric on Java and NC;
25 correct?

1 A. The rhetoric.
2 Q. And by rhetoric, you were talking about
3 public rhetoric?
4 A. Definitely public rhetoric.
5 Q. And is it fair to say in October of
6 1997 you were trying to get IBM to reduce its public
7 rhetoric in support of Java?
8 A. I don't know what you mean "trying." I
9 talk about a circumstance in which both sides would
10 lower their rhetoric.
11 Q. You were offering to lower your
12 rhetoric if they would lower their rhetoric; is that
13 fair? Isn't that what you say right here?
14 A. In the context -- this is about
15 improving the overall relationship, which is not
16 focused on the rhetoric. It says in the context of
17 that improved relationship, I think both of us should
18 lower our rhetoric.
19 Q. Indeed you say that the improved
20 relationship will "require some of the rhetoric to be
21 lowered on both sides."
22 A. That's a statement about human feelings
23 that if our rhetoric is so high, it will be hard for
24 them to do their side of improving the relationship
25 and vice-versa.

1 Q. You then go on to say on their side,
2 IBM's side, you mean Java and NC.
3 A. That's part of the rhetoric I'm
4 referring to.
5 Q. Part of their rhetoric?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. That you wanted them to lower; isn't
8 that true?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Okay. Let me ask you to look at
11 Exhibit 401. This is a message from you to
12 Mr. Ballmer and Mr. Chase with a copy to Mr. Maritz
13 and some other people also given copies dated
14 August 15, 1997 at 4:07 p.m. on the subject of IBM
15 and Netscape; correct?
16 A. Uh-huh

22 years have passed. Mr. Maritz took over a serial GPL violator at one stage, Java is still around, and Oracle goes hardball over Java APIs (after more than a decade of lawsuits it reaches the highest court). Microsoft is still fighting against Java, but it's mostly a losing battle. Many developers abandoned the Microsoft 'religion', so Microsoft bought GitHub with malicious intent.

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