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Is It Wrong to Love Microsoft? 1643

Posted by Zonk
from the love-comes-in-many-forms dept.
vd writes "Given most comments on Slashdot, it would appear that anyone with even a slight knowledge of computers hates Microsoft. An article on CoolTechZone, though, argues that not everyone should dismiss Microsoft outright. According to Varun Dubey, Linux is over-rated, Macs aren't worthy and Windows deserves respect and some love. From the article: 'What has Microsoft given us? It has given us Windows, sure, it was buggy earlier and a lot of things didn't work like they were supposed to (plug and play springs to mind) but it was a pioneering effort. No one was even close to the ease of use that Windows offered. Sure, Mac OS was a lot prettier but then it cost the moon and the stars along with both your arms and legs.'"
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Is It Wrong to Love Microsoft?

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  • by orion41us (707362) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:28AM (#13248780)


    2 almost pro-MS posts on /. in one day?

    someone please hit me...
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:34AM (#13248838)
      "...Mac OS was a lot prettier but then it cost the moon and the stars along with both your arms and legs."
      Good things cost more, it's a fact

      If you want a good car, you'll pay more than if you just want a cheap car...

      • by kaalamaadan (639250) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:48AM (#13249043) Journal
        Yes. But what if you want a cheap computer? That is better than nothing at all. I do not want the best computer, I want something that does bare minumum. When you look at this in this way, I think Microsoft is nobler (and less effecient) than Apple. Microsoft in a way made the PC revolution possible, with all its negative side-effects.
        • by alcmaeon (684971) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:50AM (#13249075)
          Computers that do the bare minimum are called fingers.
        • by IAmTheDave (746256) <basenamedave-sd.yahoo@com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:00AM (#13249192) Homepage Journal
          I'm a software developer by trade, but am I the only one who owns a Mac and runs virtual PC with Windows XP, 2000, and Linux (Ubuntu, in my case)??

          Or perhaps runs Windows XP and uses QEMU for Windows 2000 and Linux or runs Linux, and uses VMWare for Windows XP and PearPC for Mac OSX?

          My point is that all of these OS wars, and I use - actively - all three major flavors. And I know I can't be alone. Why use only a hammer to build a house when you have so many different tools in your toolbox?
        • by tsa (15680) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:07AM (#13249280) Homepage
          Certainly. Also keep in mind that Bill Gates et al. never intended to make good software. They saw an emerging market with a lot of potential and wanted to make mony fast. It just so happened that they were extremely good at it. The rest is history.
          • by gstoddart (321705) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:42AM (#13249695) Homepage
            Certainly. Also keep in mind that Bill Gates et al. never intended to make good software. They saw an emerging market with a lot of potential and wanted to make mony fast. It just so happened that they were extremely good at it.

            That's not really true. They were barely adequate at creating software in the early days.

            They started out with a bought copy of the base for both their OS and for BASIC. These weren't even the most advanced things going in the day, but they managed to acquire them.

            What they were exceedingly good at is signing a contract with IBM that said all PCs would have their operating system on it. As the PC marketplace grew, it gave them a pretty much locked in revenue stream.

            Once they had made a butt-load of money, they had the resources the hire a bunch of developers and actually start doing more.

            But make no mistake about it, they didn't get where they are due to the (initial) quality of their product offerings. They got there by locking everybody in to Microsoft as early in the PC industry as you could get, and growing with an emerging market.

            That's why we had to have court cases saying we're allowed to buy a PC which doesn't include a Microsoft OS on it and requiring they get paid for every single PC sold. Because people decided having to pay Microsoft for a PC which would run Linux was just plain wrong.
        • by halber_mensch (851834) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:42AM (#13249682)
          Yes. But what if you want a cheap computer? That is better than nothing at all. I do not want the best computer, I want something that does bare minumum. When you look at this in this way, I think Microsoft is nobler (and less effecient) than Apple. Microsoft in a way made the PC revolution possible, with all its negative side-effects.

          Microsoft Vista - It Just (Barely) Works!

          To revisit the car analogy, I think anyone that's ever been in a wreck in a Pinto or a Corvair will tell you the negative implications to such a philosophy.

          And the PC revolution was here without Microsoft. The IBM PC was not made possible by Microsoft, Microsoft only got a deal on OS licensing. If MS hadn't been around, the PC would still have hit the market with a different OS (CP/M perhaps, which by all accounts was the most successful OS of the day and of which QDOS - to be usurped and called MS-DOS - was a rough implementation), or perhaps ATARI would have stepped up in its place. Most probably Apple would have retained the PC throne. In any case, Microsoft did not make the PC possible, it only latched on to a market for profit. There was nothing noble about it, Bill Gates and his cronies made a deal with IBM to distribute exclusively a fictional OS that MS didn't have, bought QDOS from SCP, and gave it to IBM as their own. They used a cheap and dirty gamble to get their position and fortune, not a noble move on behalf of home computer users everywhere as you would pretend.

          • by Lodragandraoidh (639696) on Friday August 05, 2005 @12:14PM (#13250676) Journal
            In reply to the parent: the word 'leech' comes to mind.

            From the begining the Microsoft crew has ridden the back of the PC industry. Not only have they blood-sucked consumers, they have made life hell for developers by leveraging their monopoly on the desktop to suppress standards, maniacal attempts to bring all developers to a mediocre 'good enough' level of capabilities (considering they are competing directly with the same developers they support, this is not surprising).
      • by Zero to Hero (892254) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:51AM (#13249090)
        If you want a good car, you'll pay more than if you just want a cheap car...

        The real problem is I want a GREAT car but some company is out there trying to change the gas pumps so they only work with the cheap cars.

      • Macs were never THAT much more expensive than a comparable windows box. Blown way out of proportion.
    • by goombah99 (560566) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:10AM (#13249308)
      Pioneers get the Arrows, Settlers get the Land. Microsoft has always been a settler not a pioneer. Now one can lightly praise them for having to make a half dozen bioses, sound cards, video cards, keyboard types all work within their system. This is not a great feat these days. But back when, yeah it was an accomplishment.


      A good accomplisment? Probably not. Yeah it let in some innovation but not much. Mainly it sowed confusion and prevented the establishment of standards that would have moved the industry along faster. Where it did establish standards it mainly were undesirable ones. Witness all the legacy crap like parallel ports, old fashioned serial ports, and Bioses. How long did it take just to get something sensible like USB to be implemented?



      On the other hand apple was a pioneer, though not always the inventor of PC methods. First (working practical) use of dynamic memory. First widepread use of memory mapped video (yes we have gone back to graphics cards but for anyone who used CGA you now what I mean), first integration of post script, First affordable Graphical user interface, first affordable mouse system, cut and paste between applications, Firewire, first consumer freindly unix desktop. first extensible files system (HFS+), metadata in file system, long liberal file names, Application oriented message passing scripting language (apple script). Self discovering local networks (first appletalk, now bonjour) If we include NeXT then we can include an OS based on Object oriented programming, Display postscript, First use of optical drives...,

      Pioneering, but not settling. Not always inventing but perfrecting. They drove innovation by adopting it early and creating needs for it. Look at the first affordable desktop publishing. That required a Gui, and the ability to edit graphics as objects, and thus a mouse.

      Microsoft...hmmm what can we say... they did settle the land and run on cheap hardware. Of course Cheap is why it was also so shitty. Macs were all configured at a high level. You didnlt need a pile of add on cards or figure out the interrupts and ports the card conflicts created. When you did need cards they were autoconfigured by the OS. macs had true plug and play from the day the mac II came out. Windows never really mastered plug and play till the PXI bus.

      Linux on the other hand plays to a different market. Wheras macs were at the maximally configured end of the spectrum. linux allowed you to diassemble everything and configure it exactly how you wanted. Not a shrink wrapped solution like widows that tried to do it for you and consequently invented horrors like the registrtry, incompatible DLLs, and resource conflicts. Instead Linux is a tinkerer's toychest. Of course that's why it comes in third for desktop and ease of use. But it's also starting to become an innovator in software ideas as more tinkerers get linked together.

      • by Lussarn (105276) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:39AM (#13249652)
        Apple can move fast and change directions faster because they don't have an installed base that would hate them because they twist and turn. In PC land this can't happen because too much money is already invested in hardware and software. What do you think would happen to the world economy if Microsoft only would release longhorn for PPC?

        No, for the most part the PC isn't the early adopter but it does save lots and lots of money even if the system as a whole isn't as clean as Macintosh.

        Don't you think MS and everybody else would have liked to change the 8.3 filenames faster then what was happening. It couldn't be done becuase there was millions of programs people relied upon that wouldn't handle the change. Apple whipes the slate clean from time to time and start over. That wouldn't be possible if Apple had 95% of the market insted of 3%.
        • 8.3 (Score:5, Informative)

          by goombah99 (560566) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:52AM (#13249814)
          "Don't you think MS and everybody else would have liked to change the 8.3 filenames faster then what was happening."

          put down the crack pipe and step away from the keyboard. Are you kidding? Apple had long filenames on Windows disks long before Windows 95 did. How did they manage that? It was pretty easy, and in fact the same way windows 95 later copied. they just wrapped the old 8.3 names with a layer that looked up the short name as was actually stored on the DOS disk.

          What do you think would happen to the world economy if Microsoft only would release longhorn for PPC?

          Uh dude, apple has switched many times and many processors and never left their currentusers behind. I was playing crystal quest, a game from the mid 90's on my OSX computer, just yesterday. When apple switched to intel they are still going to be compiling apps for my present computer.

  • Freak (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dtfinch (661405) * on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:28AM (#13248789) Journal
    "most of the people developing Linux probably sit at night writing up malicious code for windows!"

    This guy really must not like open source developers.
    • Re:Freak (Score:5, Funny)

      by Virak (897071) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:32AM (#13248820) Homepage
      And he must really hate that pesky 'logic' thing.
    • Re:Freak (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Mind Booster Noori (772408) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:36AM (#13248879) Homepage
      Exactly...

      Most of the people developing Linux couldn't care less about windows, so why bother writing up malicious code for it when they can spen that time (if coding) coding to improove the tools they use and learnt to love?

      This article is written by someone who doesn't know nothing about OSS, and that quote shows it well.
    • Re:Freak (Score:5, Insightful)

      by schtum (166052) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:37AM (#13248892)
      This isn't an "article," it's a blog entry. And a really bad one at that. I say this as someone who uses Windows almost exclusively.
    • Re:Freak (Score:3, Insightful)

      most of the people that I know who develop linux software (myself included) don't know jack about writing windows software, let alone the ins and outs of writing anything more complex than a "Double Click for Pr0n.exe" trojan that simply wipes the HD.

      i tried to port one of my programs to windows, and it wouldn't even compile. I toyed around with it in visual studio at my friend's job and nothing I did would get it to compile. it kept complaining about compiled headers or something. and I was only using the
      • Porting to Windows (Score:3, Informative)

        by benhocking (724439)

        Turn off the compiled headers option, and watch out for "include" discrepancies in the header files you are using. For example, in some compilers might include , so when you are using functions from and you might mistakenly include only . This would then compile on the compiler you're used to, but would not compile on a different compiler. Neither compiler is broken in this scenario - it's your code that's broken.

        However, the compiled headers option in Visual Studio is a "bug", IMO.

        • That should have read:

          Turn off the compiled headers option, and watch out for "include" discrepancies in the header files you are using. For example, in some compilers <foo> might include <bar>, so when you are using functions from <foo> and <bar> you might mistakenly include only <foo>. This would then compile on the compiler you're used to, but would not compile on a different compiler. Neither compiler is broken in this scenario - it's your code that's broken.

          However, th

    • Re:Freak (Score:5, Funny)

      by darkmeridian (119044) <william.chuang@noSpAm.gmail.com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:52AM (#13249102) Homepage
      "most of the people developing Linux probably sit at night writing up malicious code for windows!"

      Actually, most of the people developing Windows probably sit at night writing up malicious code for Windows! Or is Internet Explorer a very successful third-party trojan?
    • Re:Freak (Score:5, Funny)

      by DenDave (700621) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:52AM (#13249108)
      This has got to be in the top ten of /. trollposts ever...

      whoever the author of this crap is, he had better crawl back into the slimy hole whence he came because he verges on libel and slander.
  • I'm confused... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kwatz (727726) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:29AM (#13248794)
    Why is this in apple.slashdot.org?
  • by rlp (11898) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:30AM (#13248799)
    Kool-Aid sales up substantially.
  • by It doesn't come easy (695416) * on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:30AM (#13248800) Journal
    Illegally destroyed competition in the OS space.
    Suppressed or destroyed competition in the app space.
    Dictated an artificial (e.g. unnecessarily expensive) software replacement cycle.
    Empowered unscrupulous businesses to spy on your every web surfing move.

    I hear people say that things aren't so bad with the current state of desktop computing. After all, Windows rarely crashes anymore and you can surf the web, play games, read email, etc. What else is there? To be quite frank, a lot. It is difficult to quantify all of the software development that hasn't been done because of Microsoft's oppressive control over the desktop. I estimate we are at least three generations of software development behind because most businesses would not risk competing with Microsoft. Just 5 years ago I can remember reading stories about companies that decided NOT to compete in a particular area because they feared Microsoft would crush them. Forget the companies put out of business or the people who had to find a new job. The loss of advancement in software technique is incalculable.
    • Summary (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mwvdlee (775178) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:42AM (#13248970) Homepage
      People don't hate Microsoft because of their products; they hate Microsoft because of their business practices.

      Microsoft isn't buggy, it's evil! ;)
    • Not to defend MS here in any way shape or form, but lets go nuts.

      Lets say tomorrow Bob 1 and Bob 2 invest some new uber fantastic computer program/hardware/whatever you pick. Now three years ago Bob 1 was working for small start up Company A while Bob 2 were working at Company B. Now Microsoft caused both companies to go out of business. So Bob 1 and 2 found each other at company 3.

      Now if MS didn't "crush them", we never would have whatever it is they invent. So while I hate MS and all it stands for, they a
  • by Ohreally_factor (593551) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:30AM (#13248801) Journal
    Are we, Zonk?

    Taco have you guys on some kind of a quota system? Or do you get bonuses for generating a certain amount of page hits?
  • by deaddrunk (443038) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:31AM (#13248803)
    It had all the features it took Microsoft ages to nearly get working many years before and at a far lower price. Shame Commodore were morons.
  • Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 1010011010 (53039) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:31AM (#13248805) Homepage
    No one was even close to the ease of use that Windows offered.

    In what universe is that true?
  • Yes, it is.

    Next on the agenda: is genocide really that bad of an idea?
  • by Keebler71 (520908) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:32AM (#13248814) Journal
    Given most comments on Slashdot, it would appear that anyone with even a slight knowledge of computers hates Microsoft

    You obviously don't read at threshold: -1.

  • by timster (32400) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:32AM (#13248815)
    What a worthless article. If it were a Slashdot comment, it'd be moderated to -1, Overrated.
  • Poor guy. (Score:3, Funny)

    by fuchsiawonder (574579) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:32AM (#13248817)
    I think it's safe to say that Mr. Dubey is afflicted with Stockholm Syndrome.
  • Terrible article (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DreadPiratePizz (803402) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:32AM (#13248818)
    First of all, the writing is less than stellar. Second, all of it is opinion based without any sort of facts to back it up, or in depth explanation of his point.

    And then there's this: Lets be fair and honest about this. Here is a company that single handedly created the market for Personal Computers, brought computing to ordinary folks like you and me, made it affordable by encouraging mass acceptance and constantly strives to provide us ease of use in every sphere it touche

    Gee, I remember something called the Apple II doing this long before microsoft was the force it was. What a maroon.
    • by ScentCone (795499)
      Gee, I remember something called the Apple II doing this long before microsoft was the force it was

      Now, be reasonable. The Apple II never saw the penetration into (especially small) businesses that even the earliest, crudest PCs immediately had. The PC, running DOS even, was hugely successful. When Windows hit, it made word processor users out of millions of people that had never even heard of the Apple II or had any inclination to spend Mac sort of money.
    • by Ohreally_factor (593551) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:51AM (#13249095) Journal
      First of all, the writing is less than stellar. Second, all of it is opinion based without any sort of facts to back it up, or in depth explanation of his point.

      I think you're being too kind. The writer comes across as a not too bright 12 year old. In other words, I think we may have just witnessed the birth of India's version of Rob Enderle.
  • wrong (Score:5, Informative)

    by tomstdenis (446163) <tomstdenis@@@gmail...com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:33AM (#13248830) Homepage
    Windows is NOT easy to use *correctly*.

    This "ease of use" includes people running as Admin with all the services running and basically wide open to the universe. That's "ease of use".

    I won't pretend that Linux or BSD is any easier but I really don't think this "ease of use" label is meaningful.

    "Chainsaws are easy to use!" -- Said the current reigning king of the one armed people.

    Tom
  • Heh (Score:5, Funny)

    by mogrify (828588) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:33AM (#13248831) Homepage
    I think it's the most over rated piece of software ever built and survives simply out of spite and not because it is terribly good at doing something because it is not!

    This is the greatest sentence ever written in the history of man. Thank you for your penetrating insight.
    • Heheh, kidding.

      But seriously, I've thought this for a long while. True, it's free, and (arguably) good as a server platform. But hugely overrated - Linux nuts often (not always) seem to consider it a viable replacement to Windows or OSX for *everyone*, which it is not...especilly when you consider that users don't care about the "morals" behind their software, just whether they can share files with others and keep working the same way that they're used to.
      • Yeah, it's true that Linux has yet to pass the Grandma test. But I can think of many things that Linux is terribly good at. Even things that are incredibly easy.

        The thing is that I want to do more than just use my computer. I want to love using my computer. And I never quite have that with Windows as a whole. But I love using Linux.

        I also don't dismiss Microsoft products out of hand... I like using Windows XP although it would not work for me exclusively. Two MS products in particular I consider t
  • by ReformedExCon (897248) <reformed.excon@gmail.com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:33AM (#13248834)
    Yes, absolutely it is wrong to love Microsoft. For that matter, it is wrong to love any company that you are not directly a part of, and even then loving a company is fraught with pitfalls. Love is something that must be reciprocated in order to have any meaning. It is a shame that English has evolved to the point where we "love" or "hate" things that we enjoy or dislike.

    Microsoft has done a lot of things, some good, some bad, some neither. Businesses are just that way. Is Microsoft worthy of respect? Sure. They have done something that other computer companies only dream of: they own several of the markets that they are part of. But does that mean we should hate them? Does it mean we should love them? Of course not.

    People who feel strong emotions towards companies that they have very little part in (having neither worked there nor been part of the founding and building of it) are misdirecting their emotions. Save your love for your neighbor, don't waste it on Microsoft.
  • by Akito (222802) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:33AM (#13248836) Homepage
    From the story:
    ...(plug and play springs to mind) but it was a pioneering effort. No one was even close to the ease of use that Windows offered. Sure, Mac OS was a lot prettier but then it cost the moon and the stars along with both your arms and legs.

    Plug and play was by no means a pioneering effort by Microsoft, the Macintosh has had it forever, so long in-fact that it had no name on Mac OS, not until it was a new feature in Windows did Microsoft give it a name. We Mac users just knew it as "stuff working when I plug it in just like it should"
    Also I would argue (and I know there are many on both sides) that the Mac OS was prettier, cost more, and was easier to use as well.
  • by colin_young (902826) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:34AM (#13248846)
    ...that was some god-awful writing. I think cool tech zone needs some editors.
  • Fatuous nonsense. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Concern (819622) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:34AM (#13248848) Journal
    What they "pioneered" was using feedback and network effects to force a marketplace to accept an inferior product at monopolist prices, costing the world trillions in lost productivity and lost opportunities.
  • by hcdejong (561314) <hobbes.xmsnet@nl> on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:35AM (#13248857)
    Dubey doesn't get why MS is hated, that much is obvious from the "article". Rather than providing arguments, he publishes a load of fanboy drivel that's as inane as any Linux or Mac zealotry I've seen.
    IOW: Nothing to see here, move along.

    Okay, if you insist:
    FTA: It is about time we stopped being hypocritical and appreciated a job really well done.
    But it isn't. Popular or not, most of their products are mediocre hack-jobs that thrive despite their quality, not because of it.
  • by crimsonclear (905392) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:35AM (#13248864)
    Finally, an article that actually gives Microsoft an objective look not skewered by the linux and mac trolls on the net
  • by kulakovich (580584) <slashdot@@@bonfireproductions...com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:36AM (#13248866)

    To say that Windows was a "Pioneering" effort is like saying Columbus "Discovered" America, when there were already people living here.

    Give me a break. Why do people insist on re-writing history?

    kulakovich
  • by theotherlight (904426) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:36AM (#13248875)
    Is this just me? I really think he's missing what Linux is all about. It's not supposed to be the most user-friendly environment. There are people that WANT to have to "recompile the kernel if [they] want to so much as change your modem" because they're looking for that kind of option and flexibility.

    I'm not even a hardcore Linux user (I've had Fedora Core for only a few months now) and even I can see this. Am I entirely wrong?
  • by Phil246 (803464) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:37AM (#13248895)

    It has given us Windows, sure, it was buggy earlier and a lot of things didn't work like they were supposed to (plug and play springs to mind)

    Did anyone else just remember back to that lovely lovely video of good 'ol Bill , and that scanner :)
    'Plug and play' *grin*

  • by Mr_Silver (213637) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:38AM (#13248903)
    I'm assuming this should be in the "It's funny, laugh" section since the user hasn't a clue about why Windows makes it easy to run viruses (everything can be executable) and what the DOJ investigation was about (monopolistic practices).

    Having said all that, there is nothing wrong (as such) with loving Microsoft. If you like a product, find it easy to use and it allows you to do what you want to do, spend less time doing boring stuff and generally make the time you spend with it enjoyable then good for you. Some people can't stand it, some people love it.

    Personally, I don't have a problem with Windows. I know it inside out (well, reasonably), can troubleshoot the few problems I have and so I'm reluctant to change to something else. Yes, the shell is a bit crappy, but XP+Cygwin in my mind is better and easier than Linux especially when under the latter my modem, sound card and network all fail to work.

    Finally as for the "loving" comments, I find it odd that anyone could love an operating system. For me, the majority of the added value are the applications than I run on top of it. Sure the OS may have some neat tricks and features but I spend more time tinkering and using the apps than the OS directly.

    But then I'm probably not your average Slashdot reader.

  • by mrRay720 (874710) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:42AM (#13248969)
    I (personally) find Windows to be around the right level of trade off between the "I want to be consumer electronics" Mac ethos and the "compile your own damn Kernel, biatch" way in the Linux world.

    We all know Win9x stunk like hell. NT was too lacking inuser friendliness. Win 2k and XP really are solid and useable for a lot of people, though. The last time I say the fabled BSOD other than through overclocking and shitty drivers - probably 2001 or something.

    Office is a slick bit of kit for people like me who can make a tidy sum developing and selling (cha-ching!) custom solutions centred around it. Word surely sucks but Excel is top notch and Access being good for smaller projects.

    At the risk of sounding like an astroturfing troll, mainstream MS software just gets the job done and if you know what you're doing - with the minimum of fuss. OSS is all well and good, and a wonderful concept, but until it's got those Ts crossed and Is dotted, Microsoft just offers a more compelling option for those wanting to run a business that don't have the resources of someone like IBM.

    In 5-10 years maybe I'll be singing the praises of a Linux/OO.o/xSQL solution, and I hope so too - I like the concept and theoretical freedom.
  • by sphealey (2855) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:47AM (#13249040)
    One small flaw in the argument: Microsoft wasn't always hated. During the 1980-1990 time period (approximately), they were seen as one of the "good guys". In particular, during the movement of PCs into large corporations in the 1984-1990 period, Microsoft was viewed by many as a strong supporter of personally-directed computing resources against the tyranny of the Data Processing Department. While their technology was never the best, it had its good points (MS-DOS 3.3; even Windows 3.1), and as Steve Gibson has pointed out its openness allowed a huge industry of improvements to spring up, which formed the basis for today's software industry.

    So, my question to Microsoft fans is, what happened between 1990 and 2000 that turned Microsoft from hero to goat? You be the judge.

    sPh
    • Why the change? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by NickFortune (613926) on Friday August 05, 2005 @11:06AM (#13249944) Homepage Journal
      Lots of things. Win95 is where I presonally mark the change/ it was a marketing lead rollout that persuaded lots of people to shell out money for an OS that would not run well on their current machines, and that even if it did, their current apps would run slower. Up until that point I'd though MS was about the best solution to the problem.


      W95 was also the debut of the Registry with all it's attendant obfuscations and encrypted entries. No more of this human readable .ini file malarkey. We'll have a binary format that can only be read using our software.


      Then there were the help files. I taught myself how to use Win3.11 to quite a high level purely from the bundled helpfiles. W95 seemed a lot less helpful. However I think the nadair was reached with WinME when I was tryng to troubleshoot my wife's PC and suddenly though "all these halp files are, are a lit of reason's why the problem is not MS's fault".


      Then there was Stacker - where MS bough out just enough of the company to squash the product. Everyone has their favourite MS unfair competition story - that was the one that made me realise these guys were not playng fair


      And there was the chap on USENET - demon.local - who posted a message subject "Bastards! Bastards! Bastards!". Apparently he'd found a bug in 95, reported it and was told he'd be given 30 days free credit while they looked into it. He was outraged - he spent his own valuable time tracking down a bug for Microsoft to improve their product, and in return they threatened to charge him money if they couldn't replicate it in 30 days. How to alienate your techically adept userbase in one easy lesson...


      The final straw for me, was finding that getting a copy of office for my dad's new XP machine doubled the cost of the computer (which we'd already bought) and that we'd need a new printer and scanner. None of which was advertised, of course.


      These are some of the landmarks on the journey from me as a MS enthusiast c.1990 to a Linux evangelist in 2005. It's not that I woke up one day and thought "linux looks cool", MS had to work long and hard before I started to think of them as the enemy.


      There's a line, arguably a subtle one, between wrtiting novice-friendly software and treating your users as idiots. Further on in the same directin there's another one markign the start of treating the user with contempt. As far as I'm concerned, MS crossed first one, then the other, and have not so much as looked over their shoulder the whole time...

    • by poot_rootbeer (188613) on Friday August 05, 2005 @12:16PM (#13250694)
      So, my question to Microsoft fans is, what happened between 1990 and 2000 that turned Microsoft from hero to goat?

      It was around 1990 that Microsoft decided to abandon its partnership with IBM in developing the powerful next-generation OS known as OS/2 and instead go solo with a lightweight GUI layer for DOS called Windows 3.0.
  • by dirtydamo (160364) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:49AM (#13249063)
    and this article is an absolute disgrace to our cause.

    Clearly there are flaws in windows, including security, which this guy just brushes under the carpet. And he clearly hasn't used linux in a while -- I can't remember having to recompile my kernel too recently to get things working.

    This isn't even an article! I've seen slashdot posts that are more insightful (and better structured).

    There are pros and cons to both OSes, and I personally feel there are more pros on the side of Windows. But this article is the kind of drivel that gives us windows fanboys a bad name.
  • Stockholm Syndrome (Score:3, Interesting)

    by OwlWhacker (758974) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:51AM (#13249094) Homepage Journal
    I love Microsoft. Absolutely adore it and what's more, I hate Linux. I think it's the most over rated piece of software ever built and survives simply out of spite and not because it is terribly good at doing something because it is not!

    It's funny to think that somebody would willingly make themselves look like a doofus.

    Is it wrong to love Microsoft? Do some research, like the rest of us.

    This guy sounds as if he has Stockholm Syndrome, where he has become sympathetic to his captor.
  • I'm Confused? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by doomicon (5310) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:55AM (#13249141) Homepage Journal
    "In a nutshell, it's not so much as that the software is secure; it's simply that no one is interested in spending sleepless nights writing a virus that won't give them the satisfaction they get from causing havoc. "

    From the latest Netcraft survey I've read, Apache still show's %70 Market Share. So according the the Author's logic, we should be seeing CodeRed, et al. for Apache NOT IIS. According to the authors logic why would someone spend "sleepless nights" focusing on the %29, instead of the %70?

    How come we don't see the same type of devestating worms that we've seen directed at IIS, being written and directed at Apache?

    Seriously, I would like to see such authors as these explain that to his readers.

  • by jiushao (898575) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:55AM (#13249147)
    I don't dislike Microsoft nearly as much as most of Slashdot does (as evidenced by some of my earlier posts), but this article has no meaningful content and is as such pointless.

    Personally I started respecting Microsoft a whole lot more when the developers started blogging [msdn.com] on a large scale. Few people can possibly have missed Raymond Chen's excellent blog Old New Thing [msdn.com] which really explains a lot of the things that Slashdot would consider "cruft" and "archaic design" in Windows. For those who missed it I would recommend the post about file-system tunneling [msdn.com]. On one hand it is a downright revolting workaround to make old apps work and behave as one would expect, but on the other hand one has to respect the obviously huge amounts of thought and effort that went into it.

    To some part this also goes back to a bit of a reaction against Slashdot and similar places obsession with hating Microsoft. They are a lot better than they were in say, 97. With NT under the hood Windows is an a lot more agreeable operating system. Slashdot may scoff at Microsofts security effort, but in all honesty it seems to be going fairly well form my perspective. Updates are quicker and more plentiful (also most vulnerabilities seem to be announced because the fix showed up on WindowsUpdate than because an exploit was found). Recompiling large part of the system with automatic buffer checks (where possible, this is C/C++ we are talking about) has helped the severity of a lot of exploits. The new low-rights IE seems to be a good approach to insulate any problems further (borrowed from UNIX daemons granted, but the OS-level security infrastructure is sound, and applying it in a useful way to desktop applications really is a new thing), check out the IE teams blog for information about that work by the way: IEBlog [msdn.com]. They may not have had the best place to start from, but it does seem to be going the right way (I mean, hey, just getting a working software firewall in place was a huge leap forward), which I would think everyone can agree is a good thing.

    Another popular blog is Michael Kaplan's blog [msdn.com] dealing with internationalization stuff like character encoding and input support.

    Overall I could link blogs for quite a while, pretty much all major Microsoft products have developers blogging. It can be interesting to have a read, they are often well written, have a nice technical content and give a bit more understanding for how things work (and may help cure some of the more irrational hate for Microsoft :).

  • by eno2001 (527078) on Friday August 05, 2005 @09:56AM (#13249153) Homepage Journal
    Wow. Talk about your flamebait. Posting a pro-MS story on /. is just asking for trouble. But posting it in apple.slashdot.org is really over the top.

    Now... addressing the , "is it OK to love Microsoft" question. It all depends on who you are and what your point of view of technology is. Let me explain:

    1. There are people who love certain company/technology just because they are told the technology is good. Non-technical Sun Microsystems fans tend to be an example of this. They are told that Sun Microsystems is a good company to buy stock in, so they assume that the products Sun produces are good. But this is not the case. Trust me, I've worked with a few really bad Sun products for the past five years and I welcomed HP-UX with open arms where support and reliability are concerned.

    2. There are people who love a technology because of it's status symbol ranking. Notable in this arena is Apple. Apple produces decent products, to be sure. But they are extremely expensive for what they are. They've been making a break with this as of late, so this isn't the ideal example, but there are plenty of products out there that fall into this realm. Think Adobe Photoshop vs. everyone else. Depending on your needs, Adobe Photoshop might be financial overkill. In many cases Paint Shop Pro or even GIMP might be enough. Especially where you don't need professional print features. But there are people out there who won't touch anything but Adobe Photoshop even to the extent of pirating it.

    3. There are the people who actually know technology well. They might be programmers or engineers. To them, there are two possible divisions. The first one are the people who came up with the technology first. I know quite a few people who worship the DEC Alpha. Even to the extent of passing around unsubstantiated rumours that Itanium 2 is really a DEC Alpha in disguise. They hate everything else that has come along since the Alpha because their battle cry is that they had 64-bit RISC processing back in 1992.

    4. The second group are those who know even more about technology than the people in example 3 above. These people usually have a really good clue about what constitutes good technology. They've usually been around a long time and have seen fads come, go and return as "new" again. They usually quitely shake their heads and take the more pragmatic view of choosing the most well designed technology. (They tend to be OpenVMS and Unix users)

    5. Then there are the retarded suits who base what makes a technology company good on their stock portfolio. This group is the least well informed and are the most likely candidates to love Microsoft. When they get mailings from various tech companies, they'll ditch anything from smaller companies (even if the technology is superior to larger companies) and only go with big name brands. Dell, HP, Oracle, Sun, Microsoft, IBM, etc... To them, these are the only options. They even tend to eschew companies like Epson, Gateway, Corel, Redhat even though there might be some very good technology coming out of these companies.

    So, the question, "is it OK to love Microsoft" is really a non-starter. Security and reliability issues aside, Microsoft has done very little in the way of creating new and useful technologies. They just buy up technologies rather then developing them from the ground up. The company is not run by engineers, it's run by businessmen. The approach is to do just enough to make their technology usable, but not to make it superior. Where they want real performance is in their profits. And that is completely counter to excellent software engineering. For someone like me, I can't love a company that doesn't engineer things properly. Of all the companies I've had to deal with, DEC was probably THE best technology company out there with a real eye on great engineering. When they got taken over by Compaq, a good deal of that got shitcanned. When HP took over Compaq even more got given away, sold off and
    • by payndz (589033) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:33AM (#13249569)
      But there are people out there who won't touch anything but Adobe Photoshop even to the extent of pirating it.

      Woah, wait - you mean there are people out there who've actually bought Photoshop? Next you'll be telling me that there are people who paid money for Word instead of just copying it from their machine at work!

  • by TangoCharlie (113383) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:04AM (#13249240) Homepage Journal
    What a load of tosh! It would appear you get a
    story submitted on slashdoty now simply by stating
    an option which is controversial!

    What's next?
    "SCO's a really great company!"
    "Osama bid Laden's a really nice guy!"
    "The Twin Towers needed to be demolished!"
    "Windows Viruses are a good thing!"

    Anyway, as a Windows programmer... the reason why Microsoft should be hated is because:
    1) Microsoft's anti-competitive (illegal) practises.
    2) Windows over complicated and badly designed architecture(s).

    There's no doubt that Microsofts office suite is currently unriveled (Sorry OOo lovers!), but that's mainly becuase Micosoft have squashed all the opposition.

    P.S. I recently bought a Mac mini for my mother-in-law. Wow! What a really lovely little computer! And MacOS X is _really_ nice. I've just bought some books on programming Cocoa... just got to buy a Mac now :-) Lets see...
  • by WillAdams (45638) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:04AM (#13249244) Homepage
    Where's one's sense of history and perspective?

    Berkeley Systems' GeoWorks was in many ways much nicer than Windows, ``run(ing) with a crispness Windows can only dream of on a 386'' (and was quite usable even on a lowly 8086).

    http://members.fortunecity.com/pcmuseum/geos.htm [fortunecity.com]

    VisiOn was tracking quite nicely as well, but was undone by MS FUD.

    PenPoint was way cool as well.

    and of course, while MS was busy w/ Windows 3.1, NeXT had NeXTStep.

    William
  • by sysadmn (29788) <sysadmn.gmail@com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:16AM (#13249379) Homepage
    I find it oddly appropriate that the ads served up by Google for the second page were for Anti-psychotic drug ambulance chasers.
    Even Google could detect that Dubay's meds aren't working.
  • by QuietLagoon (813062) on Friday August 05, 2005 @10:38AM (#13249630)
    1) the illegal leveraging of a monopoly that has stifled innovation.

    2) the lowering of expectations for the reliability of computers.

  • by NatteringNabob (829042) on Friday August 05, 2005 @12:56PM (#13251048)
    Sure, occasionally they break a few kneecaps, and torch a few buildings, but most of them are probably real good to their faimlies, and to winows and orphans, even the ones that they helped create. Your honest, local, neighborhood business man is highly over rated anyway, and mostly exists to spite the mega corporations.
  • by FFFish (7567) on Friday August 05, 2005 @01:13PM (#13251202) Homepage
    Sure, Mac OS was a lot prettier but then it cost the moon and the stars along with both your arms and legs.

    Macintosh cost more in initial cash outlay, but did it increase productivity?

    I think back over the endless days I've spent fixing Windows problems, the loss of data when Windows has bluescreened, the loss of billable time and the loss of my hair... ...and I think, hey, if MacOS puts an end to that sort of bullshit, I'm actually coming out far ahead of the game.

    The cost of an operating system and applications is one helluva lot more than merely the sticker price.
  • by yagu (721525) * <yayagu.gmail@com> on Friday August 05, 2005 @01:21PM (#13251283) Journal

    I love Microsoft. Absolutely adore it and what's more, I hate Linux. I think it's the most over rated piece of software ever built and survives simply out of spite and not because it is terribly good at doing something because it is not!

    I think that quote from your article says almost all. You adore Microsoft. Good for you. You hate [L]inux (it's not capitalized). Good for you. That's really about the only objective part of you article. You don't think linux is good at doing something? You're opinion... It's misguide at best, but it's really wrong. Did you know at Microsoft for the longest time their e-mail servers were Unix machines? That was because their e-mail applications weren't up to the task. This I know because I worked there. Haven't checked recently, so I don't know if they're still using unix for e-mail.

    Also, some of the world's largest, most complex, and savviest applications are running on linux platforms. Do you ever use Google? Google (last time I checked) is up over 40,000 linux servers running the show. Ever shop at Amazon? Amazon runs almost exclusively on linux and Solaris (Sun) boxes under the covers.

    This reminds me of the bundled issues with the antitrust lawsuits being slammed on it. It's just sad, unfair and uncompetitive. Basically what the stupid courts in Europe said was, hey, you're doing a great job, and you must pay for it! This coming from a bunch of people who couldn't even agree on a constitution!

    Sad, unfair and uncompetitive? Maybe you're only fifteen years old. If you were older and had any sense of history and knew what Microsoft has done in the past you'd understand better. Microsoft has gotten where it is, become what it is, with blatant disregard for fair and competitive business practices. (Not sure what "agreeing on a constitution" has to do with anything in your thesis.)

    Continue to love Microsoft, it's a warm fuzzy world from your view. You obviously are part of the target demographic.

    You're probably going to get hammered for your column. You deserve it.

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