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CMPLAW-L  June 1998

CMPLAW-L June 1998

Subject:

Re: Microserfs

From:

Marc Tibbar <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Internet and Computer Law Association <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 15 Jun 1998 06:19:15 EDT

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (85 lines)

Responses embedded within the letters
In a message dated 6/11/98 9:32:15 PM, you wrote:

>Be as humble as you like, you're wrong. WRT the Windows metaphor, XEROX
>got there first. That's who MS and Apple both copied.
   While XEROX (at their Pablo Alto Research Center -- also known as PARC) did
 develop the first true non-modal windowing software (as well as the mouse,
 etc), there are a few things missed by your short explanation:
(1) XEROX was prohibited from using the technology coming out of PARC, as the
 research was funded by the federal government. This meant that the technology
 had to go into the public domain.
(2) Apple used the methaphor, but built their software to support it (the
 concept) from the ground up, without using the code developed at PARC. It made
 it to market in 1984.
(3) MicroSoft developed Windows using code that had been borrowed from Apple
 under the guise of writing MS Word from the Mac. MicroSoft, already a well
 known company at that point (although not the giant of today), agreed to port
 their very popular word processing software to the Mac, but wanted access to
 the core operating system code in order to maximize their word processor.
 After obtaining the code, they did use entire sections of it in Windows v2.x,
 v3.0, v3.x and a little bit in Windows 95 (and therefore in Windows 98).
So: PARC/XEROX created and thought out. Apple wrote it from the ground up with
 newer technology and created the standard for the interface. MicroSoft copied
 (note that even the menu orders are the same).


In a message dated 6/11/98 7:13:29 AM, you wrote:

>Microsoft Word is vastly inferior, model for model, to WordPerfect,
>at least in a law office.
   MS Word is a dog on most platforms. The advantage it has is supposedly
 guaranteed compatibility with the primary operating system on the market
 (originally DOS, now Windoze).

>The key to bringing Gates to his knees is not the Dept. of Justice but the
>Dept. of Consumers out here.
The consumers won't switch away from Windows because of how it marketed - the
 best operating system that will run well on cheap hardware without excessive
 user training. OK, so UNIX has more power and the Mac is both easier to use
 and cheaper to maintain on an annual basis. MicroSoft is a marketing company
 -- and it does that extremely well. That's why they are on top of the market.
 Not great stuff. Not cutting edge R&D and products, but an increadibly
 powerful marketing department.

>Microsoft is not the be all and end all of the Internet
    No, but is trying very hard to become it.

>will only get off Intel's back
>and people realize how really good Motorola hardware is compared to
>the imported crap.
Yes, Motorola does make better processors and hardware. But that doesn't mean
 that Windows runs on it. And in case you didn't hear, earlier this year
 MicroSoft met with all the major processor manufacturers (including Intel,
 Motorola, AMD, etc) and told them that to be in the Windows game in the year
 2002, they had to support a long list of specific routines and methodologies
 for operating system to hardware communications, a radical shift away from the
 current route that most of them were planning. Moreover, they had to comply
 inorder to have a "MicroSoft Endorsed/certified compatible" label on their
 stuff, which MicroSoft will push the consumers hard to demand (after all, who
 wants their machine not to be compatible?).
 Apple still has the best game in town (ask the FBI, who just switched all
 their field agents to Apple laptops). But that doesn't mean that the masses
 get it -- or even the corporations who really drive what most people by for
 their home unit (something that will perform the same tasks as their work
 machine, so they can go home and work instead of staying late).

'Nuf said.
-- Marc Glasgow
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| Technology Specialist |
| Contributing Technology Writer, XRAY Magazine |
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