Subject: Re: IP: Wal-Mart PC, Operating System *Not* Included: $399 (fwd)
To: Greg A. Woods <email@example.com>
From: paul <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 02/24/2002 17:06:07
can we keep this in -advocacy, please?
Greg A. Woods wrote:
> [ On Friday, February 22, 2002 at 14:19:29 (-0800), David Lawler Christiansen (NT) wrote: ]
>>Subject: RE: IP: Wal-Mart PC, Operating System *Not* Included: $399 (fwd)
>>I didn't ask whether the practices to which you refer have been
>>"proven". I asked which ones.
> I meant exactly those ones documented by the courts. No more, no less.
>>As I've said in the past, hardware companies don't take software
>>terribly seriously. Why would they? They're more interested in
>>crafting nifty gizmos and in their eyes, "anyone can be a good coder,
>>right...?" This means they're usually understaffed to maintain even
>>drivers for Windows, let alone for the gazillion-odd free unixes there
>>are out there.
> Perhaps you're forgetting Apple, Sun, IBM, DEC, Pyramid, HP, Cray,
> Sequent, Tandem, and so on and so on and so on. They've all been
> innovative on the hardware side, and they've each also taken their
> systems software very seriously, to the extent that some people have
> even come to like them more for their software than their hardware.
> Most of the above have even innovated in some areas of systems software
> (well maybe not Apple, at least not without counting NeXT as part of
> them :-), and sometimes more than once!
> There are those people who will even argue that M$, a software-only
> company, hasn't innovated anything on its own except marketing. I
> wouldn't go quite that far, though I would say that the kinds of
> technical innovations coming out of M$ over the years have been rather
> on the small scale, and more of the type that can inevitably be produced
> by a million monkeys.... It seems to me that only recently has M$ been
> able to use its very significant monetary resources to attract
> significant people in computer research circles.
> In terms of business practices I'd tend to suggest M$ is not doing
> much more than what the railroad barons of the past had perfected long
>>Now we get to the heart of the issue-- you're complaining because
>>someone provided for your needs before, but no longer does. For some
>>reason, rather than blaming the company whose service has regressed, you
>>hop on the bandwagon and blame that darn Microsoft.
> I continue to blame M$ because it has been shown unequivocally that M$
> either engineered market conditions which unfairly forced their
> competitors out of existance, or where that wasn't possibly simply
> bought them outright. I blamed M$ long before the courts collected
> evidence to substantiate what were previously just my personal opinions.
> I'm not saying the Netscapes and Oracles of the world have been any
> better either, mind you.
>> How exactly is it
>>that MS prevented that company from providing you with non-Windows
> Read what your courts have told you. I don't need to rehash it all again.
>>>The only cost that's fair to hide in the bundle price
>>>is the cost of performing the bundling service (pre-install
>>>of the customer's chosen software, configuration, etc.).
>>"fair" is an interesting term. Fair to whom, out of curiosity?
> Fair to the customer, obviously. The very fact you've asked such a
> question is revealing in and of itself. If you don't understand who
> such regulations are intended to protect, and implicitly accept the
> correctness of such protection, then what exactly do you think would be
>>Fairness isn't even the issue.
> It sure as heck is! Indeed some have claimed it is the fundamental issue.
>> Many hardware manufacturers negotiate
>>prices on a bulk rate that may be variable... RAM's a great example,
>>because the prices sometimes change by the hour. Think Best Buy is
>>going to go reprint labels just because Dell got a better price for RAM?
> RAM is a commodity. The OS is not. (everyone's RAM adheres to publicly
> documented engineering specifications -- however M$'s OS does not work
> (from the user's P.O.V.) like mine and cannot run all the same
> applications as mine, even though they both work on the same hardware
> and they both may claim to implement some common APIs)
> Are you trying to say that the hardware manufactures have negotiated a
> bulk rate on M$ OS software and they're not going to (be able to) stop
> buy from M$ even though they can now use an OS with no licensing costs
>>Even if this were possible, it's NMF-- you should take it up with the
> I suspect if Bill Gates were to have his way then nothing at all would
> ever be Micro$oft's fault -- not even bugs of his own making. Your
> rhetoric not uncommonly mimics much of his, whether you claim to be
> towing the company line or not.