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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 24x7 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


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"Staff representation has previously pointed this out to management, and the career system has been the reason for several industrial actions and litigation cases initiated by SUEPO."
Forget About India's and Pakistan's Nuclear Weapons and Armament Race, They Need to Abscond Windows and Microsoft (Security Swiss Cheese)
Both countries would be wise to remove Windows as soon as possible, irrespective of the local party politics
statCounter: GNU/Linux Rose From 0.2% to Over 3% in Pakistan
GNU/Linux "proper" (i.e. not ChromeOS) has the lion's share
 
In the Pacific (Mostly Islands Around Oceania) GNU/Linux Grew a Lot
Microsoft cannot compete fairly
A Toast to Tux Machines
Food ready for the party, no photos yet...
IBM/Red Hat Failing to Meet Its WARN Obligations in NC (STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA), or Perhaps It's Constantly Delaying the Layoffs
IBM isn't named even once
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, May 25, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, May 25, 2024
GNU/Linux in Greenland
The sharp increases for GNU/Linux started last summer
[Meme] Productivity Champ Nellie Simon: It Takes Me 3+ Weeks to Write 6 Paragraphs
Congrats to Nellie Simon!
It Took EPO Management 3+ Weeks to Respond to a Letter About an Urgent Problem (Defunding of EPO Staff)
The funny thing about it is that Nellie Simon expects examiners to work day and night (which is illegal) while she herself takes 3+ weeks to write a 1-page letter
Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO) in The Hague Taking Action to Rectify Cuts to Families of Workers
they "are active in challenging this measure via the legal system"
Links 25/05/2024: Microsoft Adds More DRM (Screenshot Blocking), Another Microsoft Outage Takes Down Everything
Links for the day
Gemini Links 25/05/2024: "Bill Smugs" and OpenBSD Mirror Over Tor / I2P
Links for the day
Microsoft #1 in Gaming Layoffs, Laid Off Workers Receive Another Insult From Microsoft
Many of them never chose to work for Microsoft
In New Caledonia Windows is Now Below 30% (It Used to be Over 90%)
Microsoft's Windows absolutely collapsing and the measures are relatively stable
Red tape: farmer concerns eerily similar to Debian suicide cluster deaths
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Galway street artists support social media concerns
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 25/05/2024: Section 230 and Right of Publicity Violations by Microsoft (Which Attacks Performance Artists)
Links for the day
[Meme] No Microsoft
For fun!
Microsoft Windows Falls to New Lows in Poland
It may mean people delete Windows from relatively new PC
A 3-Year Campaign to Coerce/Intimidate Us Into Censorship: An Introduction
The campaign of coercion (or worse) started in 2021
The "D" in Debian Stands for Dictatorship That Extends to Censorship at DNS Level
Of course the registrar, which charged for domains until 2025, just went along with it
Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Getting Stacked by Microsoft
it lets Microsoft write policies
The Parasitic Nature of Microsoft Contracts
Stop feeding the beast
Gemini Links 25/05/2024: Emacs Windows 2000 Screenshots and Little Languages
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Friday, May 24, 2024
IRC logs for Friday, May 24, 2024
Ireland Exits Microsoft's Vista 11
Microsoft can't be doing too well in Ireland because Microsoft had tons of layoffs in that country last year
A Recognition for Hard Work
Running this site is a lot of work
The Web We Lost...
Vintage War Censorship Poster...
Daniel Pocock (IND) in European Election Debate
In this segment he speaks of the effects of social control media and phones on children
[Meme] Next Target: Sub Domains
Deb.Ian.Community
In Republic of (South) Korea, as of This Month, Android Climbs to Record High of 48%
Judging by statCounter anyway
"Linux" is Second-Class Citizen at IBM
sends the wrong message to Red Hat staff and Red Hat clients
Links 24/05/2024: More Software Patents Invalidated (US), New Fights to Protect Free Speech
Links for the day
"You Touched the Wrong Lady"
What Rianne wrote more than 8 months ago
Links 24/05/2024: Layoffs at LinkedIn and Election Interference Via Social Control Media
Links for the day
Getting a 'Thank You' From Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC) Will Cost You $5,000 to $30,000 (Same as Last Year)
Right now one of their associates (SFC) tries to spend money to censor us
KDE Neon Weirdness
Reprinted with permission from Ryan Farmer
Congratulations to Sirius Open Source, Still Claiming to Employ People Who Left Half a Decade Ago (or More!)
What signal does that send to con men?
[Meme] Bluewashing
Cent OS? No more.
IRC Proceedings: Thursday, May 23, 2024
IRC logs for Thursday, May 23, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Tenfold Increase for ChromeOS+GNU/Linux in Brunei
Brunei Darussalam is a country most people don't know about and never even heard about
Coming Soon: Another Round of 'Cancel Stallman' Chorus
The series required a great deal of patience