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  • As quite a lot of you probably heard, today the european court confirmed sanctions against a big american software company. Funny enough, i go this spam in a spam polluted mailing list am subscribed to:

     

    If you have your own business and require IMMEDIATE ready money to
    spend ANY way you like or need Extra money to give your business a
    boost or require A low interest loan

    ...snip...


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    This SF.net email is sponsored by: Microsoft
    Defy all challenges. Microsoft(R) Visual Studio 2005.
    http://clk.atdmt.com/MRT/go/vse0120000070mrt/direct/01/

     



  • @tchize said:

    As quite a lot of you probably heard, today the european court confirmed sanctions against a big american software company. Funny enough, i go this spam in a spam polluted mailing list am subscribed to:

     

    If you have your own business and require IMMEDIATE ready money to
    spend ANY way you like or need Extra money to give your business a
    boost or require A low interest loan

    ...snip...


    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    This SF.net email is sponsored by: Microsoft
    Defy all challenges. Microsoft(R) Visual Studio 2005.
    http://clk.atdmt.com/MRT/go/vse0120000070mrt/direct/01/

     

    VS 2005? Isn't that, so, 2005? 



  • the spam is from toady, but it seems sf.net is still being paid by microsoft to advertise on 2005 products.



  • That could well be because the next version is still in beta.

    There are still people around who swear blindly that VS6 was best. 



  • @tchize said:

    the spam is from toady,

    Who's toady? <g>



  • The real WTF is Europe's butthurt over the fact that people actually use Microsoft's products. I hope Microsoft makes the new version of XP without Media Player more expensive than the regular ones just to piss them off.

     





  • Consumer interest has been low, with roughly 1,500 units shipped to OEMs, and no reported sales to consumers

    Boy - they were all over that like a wet noodle eh?



  • @Sunstorm said:

    The real WTF is Europe's butthurt over the fact that people actually use Microsoft's products. I hope Microsoft makes the new version of XP without Media Player more expensive than the regular ones just to piss them off.

    You apparently have no comprehension of Microsoft's crime (yes, it's a crime) or what the EU commission is trying to accomplish.

    Imagine that you produce and sell a piece of software. It's popular, and you have tens or hundreds of thousands of users around the world, and you're making a reasonable amount of money from it.

    Then Microsoft creates their own software to do the same task. Rather than compete with you in the market, they embed it into Windows and give it away for free. Suddenly, you have no market, because all your customers already have the free version. Your revenue dries up, and you go out of business. Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    This is a criminal act. It is not an accident, it is deliberate and malicious on their part, and they knew that it was illegal when they did it.

    I am puzzled as to why you think it so strange that the EU commission should do something about it. I can only suppose that you are outraged every time a court convicts somebody of theft, property damage, fraud, or anything similar.


    It is unlikely that XP Edition N will be considered an acceptable measure by the commission as it currently stands. Microsoft have merely claimed that they have complied, the commission has not ruled on the subject. They would be well within their rights to fine Microsoft again for continued non-compliance and contempt of court, and to impose further conditions. You cannot evade a court ruling that you don't like by playing games with the wording - if this was a person rather than a corporation, they would be in jail by now.



  • @asuffield said:

    Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    Have they ever actually done this?  There were quite a few years between the death of Netscape and the rise of Firefox.  Would have been the perfect time for them to start charging for IE.  Even if they did start charging for Media Player, it would only be like 6 months until somebody came up with a reasonable alternative.

    Does the "free stuff is stealing my business" argument work against open source software too?



  • There is no sense in charging for IE or WMP. The money is on the other side. Can be best explained with a look at iTunes:

    Of course Apple could try to charge for the iTunes software - but obviously, they much more want to sell the content.

    MS could try a similar strategy with IE and WMP, but currently they obviously have to be carefull not to trigger anti-monopoly activities. 



  • @asuffield said:

    Then Microsoft creates their own software to do the same task. Rather than compete with you in the market, they embed it into Windows and give it away for free. Suddenly, you have no market, because all your customers already have the free version. Your revenue dries up, and you go out of business. Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    MS has lots of software that ships with the OS (Media Player, IE, Outlook, etc), I still use alternatives. Why? Because the alternatives are better. As long as the MS product is inferior the other products will always have a market. All the EU ruling did was force people to go download something, which means a lot of new users will have no idea how to do basic things on their machine. Way to stand up for the little people... slow clap



  • 6 months?  There are lots of non-WMP media players available today.  Take a look at VLC, MediaPlayer Classic, or even (dare I say it) ITunes and RealPlayer.



  • @asuffield said:

    You apparently have no comprehension of Microsoft's crime (yes, it's a crime) or what the EU commission is trying to accomplish.

    Oh, boy. Andrew, you're talking out of your butt again, and your breath still stinks. You simply insist on continuing that practice, don't you?

    @asuffield said:
    Imagine that you produce and sell a piece of software. It's popular, and you have tens or hundreds of thousands of users around the world, and you're making a reasonable amount of money from it.

    Then Microsoft creates their own software to do the same task. Rather than compete with you in the market, they embed it into Windows and give it away for free. Suddenly, you have no market, because all your customers already have the free version. Your revenue dries up, and you go out of business. Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    Can you provide an actual example of MS having done this? A real-world, not out of your imagination example of MS actually destroying a company by shipping a free add-on to the OS, driving the company out of business, and then charging for that previously free add-on? Company names and software names, please. If not, STFU. 

     @asuffield said:

    This is a criminal act. It is not an accident, it is deliberate and malicious on their part, and they knew that it was illegal when they did it.

    The criminal act here is your continuing to spread FUD and BS. 

    @asuffield said:

    It is unlikely that XP Edition N will be considered an acceptable measure by the commission as it currently stands. Microsoft have merely claimed that they have complied, the commission has not ruled on the subject. They would be well within their rights to fine Microsoft again for continued non-compliance and contempt of court, and to impose further conditions.

    And you have proof that they haven't complied, have you? You must, because otherwise the statement @asuffield said:

    would be well within their rights to fine Microsoft again for continued
    non-compliance and contempt of court, and to impose further conditions.
    would be just more BS coming out of your posts. So, please provide citations where your proof can be found.




  • How will I download Firefox if I don't have a browser shipped with the OS?



  • Then
    Microsoft creates their own software to do the same task. Rather than
    compete with you in the market, they embed it into Windows and give it
    away for free. Suddenly, you have no market, because all your customers
    already have the free version. Your revenue dries up, and you go out of
    business. Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and
    starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by
    exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to
    stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they
    want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    The way I see it, since MS actually made an OS that the great majority of the public uses, it's in their deserved right to do whatever they like in it and with it (as long as it complies with whatever I agreed to when I bought and installed Windows). If
    I make a piece of software, I am in no means obliged to support every
    Dick and Harry that want to integrate with me. If my software gets
    successful, then I still don't have to support anyone else. I can, but I don't have to. If I do, it's only because I want to increase the value of my software.

    As far as what I think is fair, Microsoft could just as well simply block all other audio players off their OS. Microsoft will not do that though because doing that will substantially decrease the value of Windows and people wouldn't use it. You are not forced to use Windows. You have lots of compelling reasons to use Windows, but that's just because Windows is good in those particular aspects. If Microsoft wants to bundle a free media player with it, then so much the better! You don't have to use Media Player, and you don't have to use Windows. If Microsoft decides to charge for a product then, I am not required to buy it, and I won't buy it unless it's actually better than it's alternatives. Even if the alternative sucks, or if there is no other alternative other than not doing whatever, I still don't have to use anything anyone's offering.

    Yes, you might say, there are business pressures and all that. It's the business' own fault for lack of foresight if they made a decision they're going back on.

    In the case of Media Player, which is and always has been free with Windows (much like, hey, iTunes for OSX, which might not come bundled, but I've never heard of anyone using anything else on a Mac, but I don't see anyone bitching over that!), I actually feel insulted as a consumer. By forcing MS to remove Media Player, they're implying that, as a user of Windows, I'm a complete retard and don't even have the conscience of what software is on my computer. I'm perfectly aware that I have Media Player on my PC, and I have it because I like it. If you don't, then it's your fault, not Microsoft's.

    I like to believe that people won't use bad software if they don't have to. Which in this case, they don't. The EU lawsuit reeks of butthurt over the fact that people actually prefer MS's softwares to all the others. It's the others' fault for not making better software that people will prefer, not Microsoft's.



  • (Damn you, edit time limit!)

    Furthermore, this lawsuit is just encouraging mediocrity. "Hey, my software isn't good enough to step up against the competition! Let's sue the competition and force them to make it worse!"

    Not like I would ever pay for a media player, considering how many of them are free. But that's probably unfair too somehow.

    I wish I could boycott the EU, but the bastards aren't selling anything. Microsoft should just buy the whole god damn continent of Europe and be done with it.



  • @asuffield said:

    Then Microsoft creates their own software to do the same task. Rather than compete with you in the market, they embed it into Windows and give it away for free. Suddenly, you have no market, because all your customers already have the free version. Your revenue dries up, and you go out of business. Microsoft then stops providing their software for free and starts charging money for it. They've taken over your business by exploiting their pre-existing monopoly, and you could do nothing to stop them - they can obliterate any other software company that they want to. Note that only people with a monopoly position can do this.

    I would say it's even a bit more cleverer then that. Instead of starting to ask money for it (because that would probably even get them sued in the USA), they start creating new file types that only their application can really use, and ask licensing cost for the use of that encoding. When you have a monopoly on a type of application, you can easily define the de facto standard. Since it's a de facto standard you can bloody well do with it as you like.

    And since people seem to scream for real world examples, i would say IE & IIS. (first hit on google for it: http://grotto11.com/blog/slash.html?+1039831658 )
    Also of course MS office.
    And apple (ipod, itunes,  airport) ( http://gregarius.dropcode.net/demo/feed.php?channel=60&iid=114795&y=2007&m=09&d=15 )

    Stuff like that is just bad for innovation and interoperability, i'm glad the EU is seeing at least some of this stuff and finds it important enough to try and stop it.

    That some of you find the fact that a goverment body tries to protect the consumer and the overall market, "unfair" for the big mega-corp, fine. But i rather live in a place where the goverment protects the consumer instead of the mega-corp.

     



  • I would say it's even a bit more cleverer then that. Instead of starting to ask money for it (because that would probably even get them sued in the USA), they start creating new file types that only their application can really use, and ask licensing cost for the use of that encoding. When you have a monopoly on a type of application, you can easily define the de facto standard. Since it's a de facto standard you can bloody well do with it as you like.

    People don't have to use the application. Let me repeat, you do not have to use the application! Do you need the governament to explain you that?



  • @Sunstorm said:

    I would say it's even a bit more cleverer then that. Instead of starting to ask money for it (because that would probably even get them sued in the USA), they start creating new file types that only their application can really use, and ask licensing cost for the use of that encoding. When you have a monopoly on a type of application, you can easily define the de facto standard. Since it's a de facto standard you can bloody well do with it as you like.

    People don't have to use the application. Let me repeat, you do not have to use the application! Do you need the governament to explain you that?

    Your point is ... wel pointless, since it's not MY choice that effects this.

    If because >80% of the world uses product A,  it doesn't matter what the other 20% are using because product A can slowely eat up that 20% by making sure the most dominant file standard for that type of application can only be reliably used by product A. Thus users of product B are forced to use product A, because otherwise they can't open files.

    Now by giving away there program for free, they can easily archieve that amount of market penetration, and thus create a monopoly on which they can create a vendor lock-in. 

    Choice, has very little to do with it. 

     



  • If because >80% of the world uses product A,  it doesn't matter what the other 20% are using because product A can slowely eat up that 20% by making sure the most dominant file standard for that type of application can only be reliably used by product A. Thus users of product B are forced to use product A, because otherwise they can't open files.

    A product obtains 80% market share because people choose the product. It doesn't just pop out with 80% market share. It's not Microsoft's fault that so many people chose, and continue to choose to use their product.

    Furthermore, you have the choice of not using those file types if you don't want to use a certain vendor's products. I don't like Apple's AAC, I won't use an iPod. Apple has one less customer, their loss. Simple as that.



  • @stratos said:

    they start creating new file types that only their application can really use, and ask licensing cost for the use of that encoding.  When you have a monopoly on a type of application, you can easily define the de facto standard. Since it's a de facto standard you can bloody well do with it as you like.

    So then content producers switch to something cheaper or free?  Sure, it's up to users to switch players at that point, but they'll do it as long as they don't have to pay.  Even despite the fact that WMP comes bundled with Windows, I've still got a crapload of other players installed because of this.  Getting rid of a defacto standard just clutters up a consumer's hard drive even more.

     



  • @Sunstorm said:

    The way I see it, since MS actually made an OS that the great majority of the public uses, it's in their deserved right to do whatever they like in it and with it (as long as it complies with whatever I agreed to when I bought and installed Windows). If
    I make a piece of software, I am in no means obliged to support every
    Dick and Harry that want to integrate with me. If my software gets
    successful, then I still don't have to support anyone else. I can, but I don't have to. If I do, it's only because I want to increase the value of my software.

    I'm sorry to be that harsh, but this is complete bullshit. For very good reasons, there are laws that prevent a company that dominates one market to use that power to take over another market. If MS integrates features into their software that can be used to take over another market, anti-trust authorities must become active. That's the burden a highly successful company like MS has to carry; they simply cannot do what less successfull companies, like Apple, can do.

    Imagine what happened if there were no such laws. MS could, for example, buy AMD and make the next version of Windows so that it runs better on Athlons than on Intel CPUs. A few years later, Intel is out of the market. MS could - like apple - build it's own PCs and push Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo etc. out of the market. Obviously not desirable.



  • @vt_mruhlin said:

    Getting rid of a defacto standard just clutters up a consumer's hard drive even more.

    True. The best cure for that: Real standards (ISO, W3C etc.) instead of defacto standards. 



  • @ammoQ said:

    I'm sorry to be that harsh, but this is complete bullshit. For very good reasons, there are laws that prevent a company that dominates one market to use that power to take over another market. If MS integrates features into their software that can be used to take over another market, anti-trust authorities must become active. That's the burden a highly successful company like MS has to carry; they simply cannot do what less successfull companies, like Apple, can do.

    Imagine what happened if there were no such laws. MS could, for example, buy AMD and make the next version of Windows so that it runs better on Athlons than on Intel CPUs. A few years later, Intel is out of the market. MS could - like apple - build it's own PCs and push Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo etc. out of the market. Obviously not desirable.

    And yet again, you don't have to use the next version of Windows. If Microsoft pushes out some widely used technology, then they're decreasing the value of their software, and therefore will lose a slice of their user base. The other parts of the user base will be market share for other solutions. Microsoft's loss.



  • @Sunstorm said:

    have to use the next version of Windows. If Microsoft pushes out some widely used technology, then they're decreasing the value of their software, and therefore will lose a slice of their user base. The other parts of the user base will be market share for other solutions. Microsoft's loss.

    Of course it's not that the new version of Windows works worse than the old one on Intel. It's just that some new features work slightly better on AMD.



  • @Sunstorm said:

    If because >80% of the world uses product A,  it doesn't matter what the other 20% are using because product A can slowely eat up that 20% by making sure the most dominant file standard for that type of application can only be reliably used by product A. Thus users of product B are forced to use product A, because otherwise they can't open files.

    A product obtains 80% market share because people choose the product. It doesn't just pop out with 80% market share. It's not Microsoft's fault that so many people chose, and continue to choose to use their product.

    That argument works at first, but doesn't account for the total of Window's market share. By now, people would use windows because everybody else uses it, not because it's that good.


    To quote from some forum along time ago:

    What's so good about IIS?

    Nothing.

    Bit black-n-white though.



  • By now, people would use windows because everybody else uses it, not because it's that good.

    This isn't true.  Everyone used to lots of different things that no one uses anymore.  For example, most people used to use Lotus - they don't now.  Then everyone used Word Perfect - they don't now.  Your presumption basically states that once something becomes popular, it must remain popular over other options.  Unless there's something I've missed that's pretty dang huge, I don't think there's anything to prove that true.  Everyone uses Windows because it is, and continues to be, the best option.

    And since people seem to scream for real world examples, i would say IE & IIS. (first hit on google for it: http://grotto11.com/blog/slash.html?+1039831658 )

    I've never seen IIS run "impossibly fast" or "incredibly slow" and I strongly doubt that saving 2 entire requests is the entirety of the reasoning there.  Plus IIS caching isn't exactly much of a secret.  Plus their own admission on that topic describes that their claims are entirely unsubstantiated on newer versions of OS's and have nothing to do with real world metrics, even in 2002:

    <FONT size=-1>UPDATE: Since this post got Slashdotted, I've been getting a pretty fair amount of e-mail, suggesting that the behavior we observed here might be anything from T/TCP to HTTP/1.1 pipelining to delirium tremens. Well, I should point out that this phenomenon was something we observed in 1997, before HTTP/1.1 was in wide use; both the client and server were using vanilla HTTP/1.0. As it turned out, it was actually the NT stack that was causing this to happen-- it didn't matter what client or server software you used. It even happened with our home-grown network test tools.

    It's entirely possible that Microsoft has changed the NT stack in recent iterations so that this doesn't happen anymore. But if you're trying to reproduce the behavior, use NT 4.0 machines for worst results.
    </FONT>

    Apple has had a long standing procedure of locking people out, but they can do that.  They don't have a monopoly.  If they did, things they do would be illegal.  But they don't.  So they aren't.  So your 2nd link is basically pointless.

    But i rather live in a place where the goverment protects the consumer instead of the mega-corp.

    Me too, but that's not the case either.  Shutting down Virus entry points in to the Windows Kernel is good for the consumer but bad for the mega-corp.  How did that go over?

    Imagine what happened if there were no such laws. MS could, for example, buy AMD and make the next version of Windows so that it runs better on Athlons than on Intel CPUs. A few years later, Intel is out of the market. MS could - like apple - build it's own PCs and push Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo etc. out of the market. Obviously not desirable.

    I assume this is hyperbole to just demonstrate your distaste for monopolistic practices?



  • Maybe using Microsoft is the best option at the time for a certain mass of people. BUT being the de facto standard - wether it's good or not - is a HUGE factor in determining this. I'm using OpenOffice by the way... and someday I'll have Linux, and Windows XP rotting in a VM, resp. on a PC dedicated to gaming. Just haven't got the time to get in-depth with Linux atm, and that's what you have to, otherwise - as you said - it's just not the better option.



  • @ShadowWolf said:

    By now, people would use windows because everybody else uses it, not because it's that good.

    This isn't true.  Everyone used to lots of different things that no one uses anymore.  For example, most people used to use Lotus - they don't now.  Then everyone used Word Perfect - they don't now.  Your presumption basically states that once something becomes popular, it must remain popular over other options.  Unless there's something I've missed that's pretty dang huge, I don't think there's anything to prove that true.  Everyone uses Windows because it is, and continues to be, the best option.

    Well happily not everyone is using windows, but to address your examples, both lotus and WP made the mistake to not get a windows version out quick enough, this would be one of the main reasons people made the "final" switch. ironical this is probably also why IE is loosing some pretty big grounds, there not innovating fast enough, and firefox seems to be the better product at the moment. However market change is gradual until some critical point get's reached. So MS still has some time to get IE back in the game. But i digress.

    The other reason excel and WP lost out was because you could read and write lotus & WP documents, which also is a critical point. This is only strengthens my point that files are the crucial key to vendor lock-in. 

     

    And since people seem to scream for real world examples, i would say IE & IIS. (first hit on google for it: http://grotto11.com/blog/slash.html?+1039831658 )

    I've never seen IIS run "impossibly fast" or "incredibly slow" and I strongly doubt that saving 2 entire requests is the entirety of the reasoning there.  Plus IIS caching isn't exactly much of a secret.  Plus their own admission on that topic describes that their claims are entirely unsubstantiated on newer versions of OS's and have nothing to do with real world metrics, even in 2002:

    <font size="-1">UPDATE: Since this post got Slashdotted, I've been getting a pretty fair amount of e-mail, suggesting that the behavior we observed here might be anything from T/TCP to HTTP/1.1 pipelining to delirium tremens. Well, I should point out that this phenomenon was something we observed in 1997, before HTTP/1.1 was in wide use; both the client and server were using vanilla HTTP/1.0. As it turned out, it was actually the NT stack that was causing this to happen-- it didn't matter what client or server software you used. It even happened with our home-grown network test tools.

    It's entirely possible that Microsoft has changed the NT stack in recent iterations so that this doesn't happen anymore. But if you're trying to reproduce the behavior, use NT 4.0 machines for worst results.
    </font>

    I don't care about the specifics, however what is clear is that the move was made to give the products a edge. Which was what the example was illustrating.

    Make sure your products work best with your products, and preferably make other products work worse with your products. 

     

    Apple has had a long standing procedure of locking people out, but they can do that.  They don't have a monopoly.  If they did, things they do would be illegal.  But they don't.  So they aren't.  So your 2nd link is basically pointless.

    I would say that apple is beginning to get a monopoly in mp3 players.

    However on a personal note, i disagree with your statement that "they can do that", but on the other hand if i would have lived in the USA i would probably have been lynched a long time ago for being a commie bastard or whatever. It is my belief that companies should not strive for profit, but strive to create a product that helps consumers.

    While market theory/supply and demand should take care of that; I don't think that it does. Now i'm not a economics guy, but i see what i see and i don't like it. 

    But i rather live in a place where the goverment protects the consumer instead of the mega-corp.

    Me too, but that's not the case either.  Shutting down Virus entry points in to the Windows Kernel is good for the consumer but bad for the mega-corp.  How did that go over?

    ???

     

    Imagine what happened if there were no such laws. MS could, for example, buy AMD and make the next version of Windows so that it runs better on Athlons than on Intel CPUs. A few years later, Intel is out of the market. MS could - like apple - build it's own PCs and push Dell, HP, Acer, Lenovo etc. out of the market. Obviously not desirable.

    I assume this is hyperbole to just demonstrate your distaste for monopolistic practices?

    In contrast for your love for it, or what? 

    He's just exaggerating the point, to show the people whom seem to think that companies should be able to get away with everything because the consumer can "vote with his wallet" or whatever crap, that monopolies are just that, because it takes away choice.  



  • I understand that they can't make artificial barriers (like not allowing OEMs to install other browsers), but that's not the case here, is it?

    I'm sure some company makes calculator software, at what point do they make MS remove calc.exe?



  • When someone starts whining about it. The governing laws on these things aren't meant to benefit the consumer primarily, they're ment to benefit smaller companies that try to take on the big ones, can't produce something good enough to replace the original, and then go to court trying to tell that it would be best for the consumer if they were to choose their software instead.



  • Nice trolling, there, Sunstorm. Really got the replies going. Distinct lack of Godwin's law etc, but still. I give it a 7.8/10.



  • @dhromed said:

    How will I download Firefox if I don't have a browser shipped with the OS?

     

    You have it faxed to you. 



  • @Cap'n Steve said:

    I understand that they can't make artificial barriers (like not allowing OEMs to install other browsers), but that's not the case here, is it?

    I'm sure some company makes calculator software, at what point do they make MS remove calc.exe?

    Still not getting it. It's not a monopoly abuse to ship a tool. It is a monopoly abuse to deliberately and maliciously destroy the business of another company by exploiting your monopoly. Microsoft were not convicted of shipping Media Player, they were convicted of deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks.

    This is a rather bizarre thread. It's like a serial murderer has been going around stabbing dozens of people, and you guys are all screaming about how his rights were infringed - after all, it's not illegal to own a knife, and the courts are being oppressive for taking his knife away from him.

    Has somebody been handing out some bad crack?



  • @ShadowWolf said:

    By now, people would use windows because everybody else uses it, not because it's that good.

    This isn't true.  Everyone used to lots of different things that no one uses anymore.  For example, most people used to use Lotus - they don't now.  Then everyone used Word Perfect - they don't now.  Your presumption basically states that once something becomes popular, it must remain popular over other options.  Unless there's something I've missed that's pretty dang huge, I don't think there's anything to prove that true.  Everyone uses Windows because it is, and continues to be, the best option.

    Agreed that Windows isn't a "bad" option, and there's no quality penalty for choosing it. I didn't mean to imply that "once something becomes popular, it must remain popular". But this effect, once a certain markeyt share has been attained, is completely real. Market share makes people choose things.

    Windows' competitors, most notably OSX and (to a small extent), Linux packages such as Ubunutu, have the more secure, more reliable and more true-to-protocol OS. Windows isn't bad per se, and like any big package, it has its share of features over the other OSs, but it's not the best. So why choose Windows? Because everybody else uses it. A lot of software is there for Windows. A lot of developers are there for windows. A lot of experts and consultants are there for Windows. The choice is not fully based on quality.



  • @asuffield said:



    This is a rather bizarre thread. It's like a serial murderer has been going around stabbing dozens of people, and you guys are all screaming about how his rights were infringed - after all, it's not illegal to own a knife, and the courts are being oppressive for taking his knife away from him.


    Who died?



  • @asuffield said:

    Still not getting it. It's not a monopoly abuse to ship a tool. It is a monopoly abuse to deliberately and maliciously destroy the business of another company by exploiting your monopoly. Microsoft were not convicted of shipping Media Player, they were convicted of deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks.

    Deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks? I wouldn't use iTunes (on Windows) or RealPlayer at all. Ever. If I was paid to. If you want market share then go make a good product, neither iTunes (again, on Windows) nor RealPlayer is a good product.



  • @asuffield said:

    It's not a monopoly abuse to ship a tool. It is a monopoly abuse to deliberately and maliciously destroy the business of another company by exploiting your monopoly. Microsoft were not convicted of shipping Media Player, they were convicted of deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks.

    Exactly how was their business destroyed by Microsoft updating Media Player? RealPlayer ended up sucking horribly, QuickTime has always suffered under having massive file sizes for their native format and generally not being much more flexible than the original Media Player anyway, and iTunes is just growing stronger thanks to iPods. Two of those three have failed (to at least some degree), but they did so of their own accord, not because Microsoft updated WMP.



  • Windows' competitors, most notably OSX and (to a small extent), Linux
    packages such as Ubunutu, have the more secure, more reliable and more
    true-to-protocol OS. Windows isn't bad per se, and like any big
    package, it has its share of features over the other OSs, but it's not
    the best. So why choose Windows? Because everybody else uses it. A lot
    of software is there for Windows. A lot of developers are there for
    windows. A lot of experts and consultants are there for Windows. The
    choice is not fully based on quality.

    Of all of the OSes, regardless of to-protocol and to-spec and to-all-those-things-that-we-programmer-types-care-about, in my experience, Windows is still the best platform for "everyone else". It has the lowest barrier for entry, it's easy for a newbie to pick up and and use without having to learn all sorts of things that people that aren't into computers don't want to (although I admit I don't know the current state of Mac OS in that matter since I haven't used it in a while), and unlike Linux, it actually behaves as expected most of the time. Just the troubles I've had trying to explain to someone why do two programs look and behave completely differenty in Linux, just because they use two different window toolkits.

    Windows' popularity is just another quality point that it gets in a customer decision. It's by no means the only one, and it's still not the only choice a customer has. Another good point for Windows is that it's been much longer in the consumer market. Linux has only relatively recently started making good ground in the direction of a stable desktop OS for "the rest of us". I accept that many people here might not think the same.

    If Windows really sucked half as much as most people like to believe it does, and the competition actually sucked less (again, from the average customer's perspective), then Windows wouldn't have as much of a market share. With this suit, iTunes or RealPlayer are trying to justify the lack of sales on Microsoft's "unfair" practices. I personally don't use them because they plain suck. RealPlayer is on the level of computer raping spyware to me, and Quicktime is on the level of computer raping annoyance for me (because every once in a while, a .mov comes along). iTunes doesn't look half bad when running on a computer that isn't mine, and I'm not sure if it still runs a dozen threads of SETI@Home when you're not looking, but I still wouldn't take it over WMP (or Winamp). This is not Microsoft's fault.



  • It's as bad as anti-virus companies getting pissed off because of the tighter security in vista.

    Vista might be buggy, but I haven't heard of any real viruses spreading in ages (mostly social-manipulation worms nowadays).

    It can be hard to convince someone that an email that says "run this to see me on my webcam" might just not be genuine. The weakest link in a computer is quickly becoming the user.



  • @Sunstorm said:

    Of all of the OSes, regardless of to-protocol and to-spec and to-all-those-things-that-we-programmer-types-care-about, in my experience, Windows is still the best platform for "everyone else". It has the lowest barrier for entry, it's easy for a newbie to pick up and and use without having to learn all sorts of things that people that aren't into computers don't want to (although I admit I don't know the current state of Mac OS in that matter since I haven't used it in a while), and unlike Linux, it actually behaves as expected most of the time. Just the troubles I've had trying to explain to someone why do two programs look and behave completely differenty in Linux, just because they use two different window toolkits.

    Windows' popularity is just another quality point that it gets in a customer decision. It's by no means the only one, and it's still not the only choice a customer has. Another good point for Windows is that it's been much longer in the consumer market. Linux has only relatively recently started making good ground in the direction of a stable desktop OS for "the rest of us". I accept that many people here might not think the same.

    Many people don't know that any other operating system but Windows even exists.
    Most PCs come with Windows pre-installed. Most Consumers do not actively decide to use Windows. They simply keep what they got.
    Many people must use Windows, because they need to use some software that is only available for Windows.

    Windows is not successful because it is inherently better than, say, Linux or OS/X.

    If people were confident in the quality of Windows and were actively deciding to use it, you should expect that a lot more people buy the boxed version of Vista. Currently, it looks like Vista is mostly sold along with new PCs. And still a lot of people choose XP over Vista, despite all the problems that Vista is supposed to fix.



  • Many people don't know that any other operating system but Windows even exists.
    Most PCs come with Windows pre-installed. Most Consumers do not actively decide to use Windows. They simply keep what they got.
    Many people must use Windows, because they need to use some software that is only available for Windows.

    None of this is the fault of Microsoft. No one must use some kind of software. In this case, the need is simply a high value of want.

    You state that a lot of people choose XP over Vista. That points out active decision right there. And if they're informed enough to understand why they want XP over Vista, they've most certainly have heard of other alternatives.  



  • @Sunstorm said:

    Many people don't know that any other operating system but Windows even exists.
    Most PCs come with Windows pre-installed. Most Consumers do not actively decide to use Windows. They simply keep what they got.
    Many people must use Windows, because they need to use some software that is only available for Windows.

    None of this is the fault of Microsoft. No one must use some kind of software. In this case, the need is simply a high value of want.

    Well, some contracts MS forced on the PC manufacturers made it highly unlikely that those manufacturers would ever preload anything but Windows, even if there was demand for e.g. Linux, at least it would not have made the PC cheaper if they had preloaded Linux instead of Windows.



  • Well, some contracts MS forced on the PC manufacturers made it highly
    unlikely that those manufacturers would ever preload anything but
    Windows, even if there was demand for e.g. Linux, at least it would not
    have made the PC cheaper if they had preloaded Linux instead of Windows.

    A contract implies that the manufacturers agreed to the terms. It's not something that Microsoft forced on them. I think before, the problem really was lack of demand because Linux still just wasn't ready to be shipped as a consumer OS. Nowadays this has changed, and you've got tons of vendors shipping Linux, even big names like Dell.



  • @Pidgeot said:

    @asuffield said:

    It's not a monopoly abuse to ship a tool. It is a monopoly abuse to deliberately and maliciously destroy the business of another company by exploiting your monopoly. Microsoft were not convicted of shipping Media Player, they were convicted of deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks.

    Exactly how was their business destroyed by Microsoft updating Media Player?

    Attempted murder is still a crime. Attempted fraud is still a crime. Attempted monopoly abuse is still a crime.

    They don't have to succeed to be criminals. They just have to act maliciously, in bad faith, and in breach of the law - which is precisely what they have been convicted of doing.



  • @Sunstorm said:

    Well, some contracts MS forced on the PC manufacturers made it highly
    unlikely that those manufacturers would ever preload anything but
    Windows, even if there was demand for e.g. Linux, at least it would not
    have made the PC cheaper if they had preloaded Linux instead of Windows.

    A contract implies that the manufacturers agreed to the terms. It's not something that Microsoft forced on them.

    In the US, Microsoft have been convicted of forcing contracts onto the manufacturers (also a crime, distinct from monopoly abuse).



  • @Kemp said:

    @asuffield said:

    Still not getting it. It's not a monopoly abuse to ship a tool. It is a monopoly abuse to deliberately and maliciously destroy the business of another company by exploiting your monopoly. Microsoft were not convicted of shipping Media Player, they were convicted of deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks.

    Deliberately attacking Apple and RealNetworks? I wouldn't use iTunes (on Windows) or RealPlayer at all. Ever. If I was paid to. If you want market share then go make a good product, neither iTunes (again, on Windows) nor RealPlayer is a good product.

    I suppose that you are also favour of legalising theft of undesirable items and murder of undesirable people.

    The law as it currently stands does not work that way. The value of the victim is not considered when determining whether a crime has been committed.



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  • @stratos said:

    Your point is ... wel pointless, since it's not MY choice that effects this.

    If because >80% of the world uses product A,  it doesn't matter what the other 20% are using because product A can slowely eat up that 20% by making sure the most dominant file standard for that type of application can only be reliably used by product A. Thus users of product B are forced to use product A, because otherwise they can't open files.

    Ok. Your argument makes no sense. 

    "It's unfair for Honda to be in business. They are the only ones in the world that use the parts that are made specifically for installation in their Accord, and more people drive Accords than Ferraris. People who drive Ferraris are being <b>forced</b> to drive Accords."

    Same logic, right? Except it makes no sense either way.

    Bottom line here is that, if I release a program that's the only choice for opening .KenW files (the new graphics format I invented that supports 99.9% compression with no loss of quality), you can still opt to use .JPG. The only reason <b>you decide</b> to use my software is because you want those features.

    I think the new iPhone is pretty nice, and has some great features. I don't have one, though, because to me those features aren't worth the price Apple is charging. 


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